Steven Johnson on Serendipity

An oldie but a goodie:

I find vastly more weird, unplanned stuff online than I ever did browsing the stacks as a grad student. Browsing the stacks is one of the most overrated and abused examples in the canon of things-we-used-to-do-that-were-so-much-better. (I love the whole idea of pulling down a book because you like the “binding.”) Thanks to the connective nature of hypertext, and the blogosphere’s exploratory hunger for finding new stuff, the web is the greatest serendipity engine in the history of culture. It is far, far easier to sit down in front of your browser and stumble across

When something suddenly goes terribly wrong

Here’s what airplane pilots are told to do when something suddenly goes terribly wrong with the plane: Don’t do anything. Just sit there and think about what’s happening. Whatever you think is going on, and whatever you feel like doing right away in response, you’re probably wrong. Take your time, and it will make sense soon enough, and you’ll know the right thing to do.

How to Pack for Two Years, One Bag at a Time

Over the next two years, I’m going to be on the road.

A lot.

Entering the world of the road warrior, I frequented the Flyertalk forums, among others, and discovered the cult of One Bag. Remember George Clooney’s character in Up in the Air? (If not, go watch it right now.) As a frequent business traveler, he offered some practical advice to his rookie co-worker, who’d packed way too much. He glided through the airport as though a champion on ice; she stumbled, carrying too many things, losing a battle with her high heels and oversized luggage.

The Neuroscience of First Impressions

Getting a single job in the voice over business is a question of patience and playing the odds. But just one moment or role can make a career. In Dave Calabrese’s case, it came when he visited Edge Studios to record an online tutorial for a corporation.

“He thanked us for bringing him in. Then he did a great job. And when he left, he thanked us again,” explains Dave Goldberg, the owner of Edge Studios, one of the entertainment industry’s leading agencies of voice overs. “After he left the studio, the receptionist” (who had been working at Edge Studios

Ready to get lucky?

Joan Didion

To free us from the expectations of others, to give us back to ourselves—there lies the great, singular power of self-respect.

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Can You Learn to be Lucky: Why Some People Seem to Win More Often Than Others by Karla Starr

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