‘Of course I can. I’m an expert.’

I must admit, I’ve had a few meetings like this (and sat in on others which I suspect were going like this from the expert’s perceptive).

Funny business meeting illustrating how hard it is for an engineer to fit into the corporate world!

I love how he starts catching on and adapting to the situation. Pretty funny.

’29 Dumb Things Finance People Say’

Morgan Housel for The Motley Fool:

My job requires reading a lot of financial news. It’s one of my favorite parts. But it gives me a front-row seat to the downside of financial journalism: gibberish, nonsense, garbage, and drivel. And let me tell you, there’s a lot of it.

Here are a few stupid things I hear a lot.

This is classic.

(I should do one of these for technology journalists and/or technologists.)

Fixing a Business Relationship With a $30 Cake

Resolving a billing dispute with big companies can take some creativity. Robert Kaye, of the MetaBrainz Foundation (operator of MusicBrainz), shares his breakthrough, and the adventure that went along with it, as he worked to get a three year old (!) outstanding invoice taken care of by Amazon.com:

For the last 6 months I’ve stepped up my pestering to get this resolved. I’ve been assured progress for the past 6 months, but nothing has happened. Promises of progress, then nothing. Again and again. I finally had an idea how to make change happen: Send Amazon an anniversary cake and post a picture of it publicly!

I even told my Amazon contacts about this idea, but it didn’t really catalyze anything. Then I finally set a deadline of Dec 2nd. The deadline came and went with more unfulfilled promises, so on December 2nd I picked up the phone and ordered a cake.

Only the Freshest Chilies for the Sriracha Rooster →

A bit of a puff piece, but I learned a couple things and was moved enough that I stood up, grabbed the bottle from the cupboard, and enjoyed a spoonful.

Roberto A. Ferdman writing for qz:

If David Tran were a more conventional CEO, he would be a fixture at conferences, a darling of magazine profiles, and a subject of case studies in the Harvard Business Review. Sriracha hot sauce, made by Huy Fong Foods, which Tran founded 33 years ago in Los Angeles, is one of the coolest brands in town. There are entire cookbooks written to celebrate Sriracha’s versatility; memorabilia ranging from iPhone covers to t-shirts and all sorts of other swag; a documentary in the works to chronicle its rise; and innumerable imitators. Sriracha sales last year reached some 20 million bottles to the tune of $60 million dollars, percentage sales growth is in the double digits each year, and it does all this without spending a cent on advertising.

Yet Tran shuns publicity, professes not to care about profits, hardly knows where his sauces are sold, and probably leaves millions of dollars on the table every year. His dream, Tran tells Quartz, “was never to become a billionaire.” It is “to make enough fresh chili sauce so that everyone who wants Huy Fong can have it. Nothing more.”

Power Is Intoxicating →

Allie Brosh in this humorous cartoon essay:

The feeling had been slowly intensifying ever since I put the costume on that morning, and, as I stood there in the middle of the classroom, staring off into the distance in an unresponsive power trance, it finally hit critical mass.

I had to find some way to use it. Any way. Immediately.

This also explains why anonymity and pseudonyms encourage Internet trolls.

An Illicit Methodology →

Alan Weiss:

A new boy in the neighborhood, five years old, met another new boy.

“How did you get here?” asked the first.

The second explained that his parents told him it was an act of love and intimacy which he could not yet fully understand, but their behaviors created him in his mother’s body where he spent nine months before coming out.

The first said, “We drove from Portland.”

Moral: Never lead with methodology.

I’ve never known a technologist to behave this way.