Trump Bumps? An Election Night That Will Go Down In History?

Trump Bumps? An Election Night That Will Go Down In History?

 

All over Manhattan – even at my co-working space – all I see are pregnant women. And I know this is not supposed to be happening:

  • New York’s birth rate is supposedly declining according to 2016 census
  • HOWEVER – based on all the baby bumps I am seeing, lots of babies were created last November
  • Could this have something to do with Donald Trump’s election?
  • And if so, how did couples decide this was the “right time” to get pregnant?
  • Were couples drowning their election sorrows and creating accidental pregnancies?
  • Or are these “disaster” babies like we saw after Hurricane Sandy?

In researching the topic, I found the documented events that caused spectacular baby booms in the past including Wars (WWII), sporting events and natural disasters. Read on below.

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Restaurant Roundup: Five Top Trends On My Radar

Restaurant Roundup: Five Top Trends On My Radar

 

Here’s what I’m keeping an eye on – starting with my biggest disappointment:

Poke: Still going strong but increasingly unsatisfactory.

  • In NYC, the two best continue to be Seamore’s and Wisefish Poke. Highly recommend both.
  • However, I’ve tried many others including Chikarashi and Sons of Thunder. All underwhelming, some simply bad.
  • Everywhere I’ve traveled this year, poke places are springing up: Atlanta, DC, Philadelphia.
  • In Dallas, there’s a lot of buzz around Pok the Raw Bar, which has a former Nobu chef at the helm. Fingers crossed they get the formula right.

What’s next on the raw fish front?

  • I’m putting my money on ceviche which is showing up on more menus. One of my favorites, at the moment, is the ceviche verde at ATLA, Enrique Olvera’s new casual spot.

Read on below for 4 more trends including the huge generational differences I’m picking up between millennials and those of us over 50 when it comes to our expectations for dining out.

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Knitting: Great for Stress Relief, But So Much More

Knitting: Great for Stress Relief, But So Much More

 

Everywhere I look, there they are: Knitters (men and women!).

  • On the subway – YES!
  • At art events – YES. Yarnbombers covering trees, motorcycles, trashcans.
  • On TV – YES. Norway’s Slow TV has a National Knitting Evening with 4 hours of knitting for binge watching. Another reason to love Norway! Available on Netflix.
  • On Youtube – YES. Almost 3MM videos on knitting.
  • Memes – YES. Knit Club is my favorite.
  • Even Vogue is on board: German Vogue editor, Christiane Arp is often seen with her knitting needles.
  • Wool and the Gang, a super cool knitting company, has created a kit that builds 20 minutes of meditation into your daily schedule via knitting a scarf.  Their “Me Time” Scarf comes with striped yarn in two different shades. Every day, you’re supposed to knit rows of a single color then stop when the color of yarn changes. Each stripe of color on the scarf should take about 20 minutes to knit, which is just enough time to relax and meditate about your day.

Read on below for more on knitting including a great video on why people knit, and some first hand examples from Franklin Habit, the renowned writer, illustrator, and knitter, on the connection between knitting and yoga.

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Why Robots? Because There Are Not Enough Qualified Workers

Why Robots? Because There Are Not Enough Qualified Workers

 

In the manufacturing sector, there are currently two job openings for every qualified worker. CRAZY!

  • Bringing jobs back to America has been a top initiative under President Trump but the data suggests the problem is a lack of qualified workers more than a lack of jobs.
  • And to be a qualified worker in manufacturing these days requires more tech skills than brawn.

Here are the top tends for manufacturing per Wisconsin’s SVA Consulting Services:

Labor Shortages

  • Over the next five years, most manufacturers will have two job openings for every one qualified individual. As baby boomers retire, the demand will increase even more.

Advanced Manufacturing & Automation

  • More advanced equipment is being installed on shop floors to increase worker efficiency. Those types of investments are expected to continue indefinitely.
  • Workers will need to develop the skills to work in this environment, moving from a pure manual labor role to overseeing the new technology.

Data-Driven Processes

  • Manufacturing companies of all sizes are beginning the transition to advanced analytics, data management and data storage as those technologies become less expensive.
  • Companies realize these processes improve efficiency, agility and decision time.

Re-shoring

  • The current administration is helping drive this initiative, but it’s not the only reason manufacturers are trying to bring production back to the U.S.
  • For the past few years, there’s been a renewed focus on “American-made” with companies identifying efficiencies and cost cuts from manufacturing Stateside.
  • For companies to achieve this, however, they will need a much larger pool of skilled workers than is currently available.
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The Most Valuable Brands In The World: Tech Dominates and Brands Get Younger

The Most Valuable Brands In The World: Tech Dominates and Brands Get Younger

 

Here are some key takeaways from this excellent brand study from Kantar Millward Brown:

  • Only three brands that appeared in the Global Top 10 in 2006—Google, Microsoft, and IBM—remain in the Top 10 in 2017.
  • Google is #1 for a second year in a row.
  • The average age of a Top 10 brand in 2017 is 42 (started in 1975). That is less than half the average age of a Top 10 brand in 2006, which was 88 (started in 1929).
  • Amazon achieved the highest dollar value growth of all brands, increasing by $40.3 billion (+41%) to $139.3bn to take the #4 position.
  • Retail was the fastest rising category, increasing +14% driven by Amazon (and Alibaba).
  • The value growth of pure online retailers has increased +388% since 2006, while traditional retailers dropped -23%.
  • Adidas leads in Top Risers, up 58% in value year-on-year.
  • Moutai, the Chinese white alcohol, was the #2 Top Riser, increasing by 48%.
  • The number of brands worth more than $100bn increased from six to nine.
  • The Top 10 in 2017 are worth almost as much as the entire Top 100 in 2006 ($1.42tn vs $1.44tn).
  • Heritage brands are being surpassed by emerging brands, affecting almost every category, from luxury to spirits to auto. What consumers want, what they value, and where they choose to spend their dollars have all evolved.
  • The balance of power has tipped towards consumer-focused technology brands that develop ecosystems that cater to many needs, simplifying an increasingly complex world.
  • More than half of the Top 100’s total brand value is contributed by technology-related brands (includes telcoms and online retailers), up from a third in 2006, and these have grown +16% in the last year compared with +4% for non-tech brands.
  • All seven of the newcomers to the Top 100 are technology-related brands: XFinity, YouTube, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Salesforce, Netflix, Snapchat and Sprint.

Read on below for more, including two of their findings with which I disagree.

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Hey, Joe Kernen! I Give Up, I’m Switching To Bloomberg

Hey, Joe Kernen! I Give Up, I’m Switching To Bloomberg

 

Joe Kernen, anchor at CNBC’s Squawk Box, has long been too overtly political – on air – for my liking.

  • But now with Trump’s win, Kernen feels he’s been given carte blanche to make his political rants the centerpiece of the show.
  • It appears he is trying to turn Squawk Box into the TV version of Trump’s tweets. Who knew that was even possible?
  • As many of you know I have been a longtime fan of Squawk Box. This switch to Bloomberg definitely puts a crimp in my early morning routine.
  • That said, I’m over cringing every time Kernen goes on one of his rants – or starts badgering guests who are not to his political liking.
  • And don’t get me started on his anti-tech stance or his myopic America-first view of the world. All backward-looking and jarring on a business show.

Last week, after I had hit the mute button one too many times, I made the decision to switch to Bloomberg Surveillance and Bloomberg Daybreak. It’s not been an easy shift.

  • I already miss SquawkBox. Their guests and the setup of the show are vastly superior to anything Bloomberg is currently offering.
  • So odd that the Bloomberg early morning shows are so lackluster when the rest of their programming is so stellar and among my favorite TV viewing e.g. David Rubenstein Show, Brilliant Ideas, Studio 1.0, Charlie Rose.
  • Perhaps they will read this and up their game!
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Why Blog And Why Keep At It? Because It Makes You Smarter

Why Blog And Why Keep At It? Because It Makes You Smarter

 

Just read an excellent piece by Mark Schaefer on why you must keep blogging even when it seems nobody gives a damn.

And I know there is a difference between bloggers who are doing it to generate income vs. ones, like me, who are doing it to keep their personal brand relevant.

Here are the top reasons to keep blogging :

Learning and growing.

  • Having a blog forces you to always be on the lookout for what’s new and what’s changing.
  • I am much more on my game on the three topic areas that I cover because I am consistently researching what’s new in those areas: business/work, restaurants/food and art/culture.

You’ll become a better writer.

  • I cringe when I read some of my early blog posts. Yikes! So bad – but I at least I got the junk out of my system.
  • One of the most important things I’ve learned is how different writing for a blog is versus writing for a magazine or newspaper.
  • With blogs, you only have a nano-second to capture your reader’s attention. You get two chances to hook them: headline, first sentence. If that doesn’t grab them, they’re gone.

It’s a great way to dial up your skill set.

  • If you’re over 40, and whether you think you will be looking for a new job or not, you might want to consider creating a blog about whatever passion project you’ve got – dogs, street art, eating vegan – whatever turns you on, get a blog going on the topic. It will make you much more interesting to potential employers.
  • I’m always shocked at how out of date people’s skill sets are when it comes to tech and social media.  Doubly shocking when you realize those people are in the throes of career change.
  • The person reviewing your resume is probably under-30. The first thing they will do is google you.  Finding a small digital footprint is not a good thing.
  • Blogging is helpful not only for developing subject matter expertise but also for keeping your tech skills sharp – wordpress, mailchimp, minimal coding, Instagram Stories vs. Snapchat – in today’s world, you must have it all covered.

Feedback from readers

  • There is something incredibly satisfying about getting feedback from readers (whether it’s one email or hundreds).
  • Hearing from people who you’ve touched, or helped in some way,through your writing, is extremely gratifying.
  • For me, those emails come most consistently when I reveal my vulnerabilities and write about something very personal that resonates with many. Providing insights and tips on how to deal with particularly challenging situations is valuable.
  • Bottom line: the feedback is what keeps me going!!
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Virtual Romance Among The Herbivores Of Japan

Virtual Romance Among The Herbivores Of Japan

 

One of the most fascinating conversations I had while in Kyoto was with our guide about the changing dating, marriage and sex habits of young Japanese men (and women).

  • According to the guide, a new breed of man called an “herbivore” has emerged. He has no interest in having a real girlfriend or real sex. The term was first coined by writer Maki Fukasawa in 2006.
  • Herbivore men stand in marked contrast to the “carnivore” or “beastly” man who our guide suggested was like a typical macho “bro” or frat boy i.e. overly loud and always talking about himself.
  • Herbivores are frequently “otaku” i.e. deeply immersed in their own fantasy worlds of manga, anime and computers and that includes having relationships with virtual girlfriends e.g. through smartphone apps as well as with Sex/Love Dolls.
  • They have little interest in dating 3D women (i.e. real women) who they see as being too difficult and demanding.
  • Some herbivore men are, however, married but keep their virtual girlfriends hidden from their wives. Some say they would hate to have to choose between the two.

But it’s not just young Japanese men who are into virtual girlfriends, older married men are buying sex dolls and falling in love with them – over their wives’ and kids’ objections.

 

  • The dolls have become more popular as they’ve upgraded to more realistic silicone material.
  • They start at $6,000 and are customizable with different heads and body parts.
  • Some men have multiple dolls who they take out for picnics and other social activities – generally in wheelchairs!
  • The future of sex dolls is bright as researchers develop next-generation sexbots who are able to talk, laugh and even simulate an orgasm.

Read on below for more information including govt. data and a link to a US-based site for luxury silicone sex dolls.

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