My Dinner with Malcolm Gladwell (Epilogue)

Making a Living

Bounty hunter #1: You’re wanted, Wales.
Josey Wales: Reckon I’m right popular. You a bounty hunter?
Bounty hunter #1: A man’s got to do something for a living these days.
Josey Wales: Dyin’ ain’t much of a living, boy.

- The Outlaw Josey Wales

TUESDAY: I had to come up with a plan. It had to be fate that Malcolm “Blink”ing Gladwell rolled up next to me at the Catalina having what appeared to be a cappuccino while looking nervously at his computer screen. I could leave him alone, or I could see what he was all about. This is Texas, and we are nosy, chatty, and very much want to tell people about ourselves; therefore, if I just start a chat it will either become a legitimate chat, or possibly one of the suicide scenes from Airplane. I took a shot of Rwanda to instill some bravery and —–I quickly decided that if it was fate I would indeed see him here again and we might even have a meaningful chat.

[Read more...]

My Dinner with Malcolm Gladwell (Part 3)

“and now…the rest of the story”

Paul Harvey

Scared to Death

As soon as Gladwell was gone I took a big swig of my now very cold Rwanda and gazed up at the barista. He must have seen the stupid grin on my face because he gave me a “why the hell are you so happy?” look.

Me: Do you know who that was?

Barista: No, should I?

Me: That was Malcolm Gladwell, one of the most important American writers in the world (realizing that was totally sycophantic before it left my mouth)

Barista: Cool, I have seen him in here a few times before

Me: Yeah, I think he is researching here (like I knew something)

Barista: I always thought he was pretty weird-looking.

Me: (Thinking Barista not exactly the picture of normalcy) Yeah, he is amazing..one of my idols…..I decided to announce that I am becoming a writer today and then he appears here man, and I am like, wow this is fate man, this the real fucking deal..seriously Malcolm Gladwell..wait man..wait

Barista: (confused) excuse me?

Me: Sorry dude, gotta get out of here, Gladwell’s coming to dinner (as I am hustling out) [Read more...]

My Dinner with Malcolm Gladwell (Part 2)

…he smiled to himself, adjusted his laptop screen downward hiding his work, turned his chair in my direction and told me…

Just Threw this Together

MG – I find it curious how often I am asked that question..uhm…uh..

Me – Michael…(beat) don’t worry man I am sure you forget quite a few names

MG – (cutting me off) No I don’t. I forget very few names and even fewer faces

Me – Would you say you had spent 10,000 hours getting to that level of mastery with names? (smiling to myself as I knew I had him on that one)

MG – Yes, for sure. Imagine that I have been writing for the New Yorker since 1996 and imagine the number of interviews I have conducted; with and without the assistance of recording equipment

Me – What are you drinking?

MG – Excuse me?

Me – What kind of coffee drink are you drinking?

MG – Oh, this is a cappuccino with a little less textured milk, so really it is more like a latte’ without so much milk…

Me – Or a cappuccino without schiuma

MG -What was that?

Me – Schiuma, the Italian name for the foam. Italians don’t go down the path of naming things cutely just to make a menu sound better. I mean, an Italian will use many words to describe something, but taking license with the structure of the language seems pretty Anglo [Read more...]

My Favorite 5 Blog Posts – Kind of My Greatest Hits EP

The Artist Looks at 40 - Through A Glass of 1970 Dom Perignon

After the really wonderful response I have gotten lately and some very sweet comments from new friends I have decided to re-introduce some of my favorite pieces since this Adventure began in 2010. I will post a link to the piece and some “director’s notes” about what I wanted to do or with the piece or why my grammar sucked or the reason it was verbose.

Keep in mind most of these are much longer pieces than what you have come to know from me and if you have a little time I am hopeful you will take something home with you.

Without further to do (as my old boss would say) :-) [Read more...]

Snoring in Europe (Part 2)

Near Montecucco

This is part 2 of my existential piece on snoring in Europe and how it enlightened me on Friendship, duty, and following my passion. Keep in mind I was living in Tuscany at the time this was written. Some fine work by my colleagues Alfonso Cevola and Jeremy Parzen have brought the subject of DOCG wines from the Montecucco appellation in Tuscany to light this week, and as I was embarking on a job in this area at the time I penned this, I thought it an appropriate piece for the week. [Read more...]

Puglia in May

View to the Road

Ca’ del Fico is available in May!

Since I have been involved in Puglia my dear friend Antonello’s stunning villa (Ca’ del Fico)in the hills outside of FASANO in Puglia has never been available in May. As my readers know I fell in love with this amazing property in 2006 when I set eyes upon its’ acres of olive trees, orchards of figs, and view of the Adriatic. Now, my first year removed as owner of Southern Visions Travel, I am more enamored than ever by the region and by this stunning piece of property. [Read more...]

My Dinner with Malcolm Gladwell (Epilogue)

Making a Living

Bounty hunter #1: You’re wanted, Wales.
Josey Wales: Reckon I’m right popular. You a bounty hunter?
Bounty hunter #1: A man’s got to do something for a living these days.
Josey Wales: Dyin’ ain’t much of a living, boy.

- The Outlaw Josey Wales

TUESDAY: I had to come up with a plan. It had to be fate that Malcolm “Blink”ing Gladwell rolled up next to me at the Catalina having what appeared to be a cappuccino while looking nervously at his computer screen. I could leave him alone, or I could see what he was all about. This is Texas, and we are nosy, chatty, and very want to tell people about ourselves; therefore, if I just start a chat it will either become a legitimate chat, or possibly one of the suicide scenes from Airplane. I took a shot of Rwanda to instill some bravery and —–I quickly decided that if  it was fate I would indeed see him here again and we might even have a meaningful chat. [Read more...]

My Dinner with Malcolm Gladwell (Part 3)

“and now…the rest of the story”

Paul Harvey

Scared to Death

As soon as Gladwell was gone I took a big swig of my now very cold Rwanda and gazed up at the barista. He must have seen the stupid grin on my face because he gave me a “why the hell are you so happy?” look.

Me: Do you know who that was?

Barista: No, should I?

Me: That was Malcolm Gladwell, one of the most important American writers in the world (realizing that was totally gay before it left my mouth)

Barista: Cool, I have seen him in here a few times before

Me: Yeah, I think he is researching here (like I knew something)

Barista: I always thought he was pretty weird-looking.

Me: (Thinking Barista not exactly the picture of normalcy) Yeah, he is amazing..one of my idols…..I decided to announce that I am becoming a writer today and then he appears here man, and I am like, wow this is fate man, this the real fucking deal..seriously Malcolm Gladwell..wait man..wait

Barista: (confused) excuse me?

Me: Sorry dude, gotta get out of here, Gladwell’s coming to dinner (as I am hustling out) [Read more...]

My Dinner with Malcolm Gladwell (Part 2)

…he smiled to himself, adjusted his laptop screen downward hiding his work, turned his chair in my direction and told me…

Just Threw this Together

MG – I find it curious how often I am asked that question..uhm…uh..

Me – Michael…(beat) don’t worry man I am sure you forget quite a few names

MG – (cutting me off) No I don’t. I forget very few names and even fewer faces

Me – Would you say you had spent 10,000 hours getting to that level of mastery with names? (smiling to myself as I knew I had him on that one)

MG – Yes, for sure. Imagine that I have been writing for the New Yorker since 1996 and imagine the number of interviews I have conducted; with and without the assistance of recording equipment

Me – What are you drinking?

MG – Excuse me?

Me – What kind of coffee drink are you drinking?

MG – Oh, this is a cappuccino with a little less textured milk, so really it is more like a latte’ without so much milk…

Me – Or a cappuccino without schiuma

MG -What was that?

Me – Schiuma, the Italian name for the foam. Italians don’t go down the path of naming things cutely just to make a menu sound better. I mean, an Italian will use many words to describe something, but taking license with the structure of the language seems pretty Anglo [Read more...]