What are “Brass Tacks”?

The phrase “get down to brass tacks” means to focus on facts or essential details. Although the origin is debated, the most sensible meaning seems to be related to cutting cloth. A yard of cloth used to be inaccurately measured by holding it at arm’s length.  At some point, tacks were placed on a cutting table to mark the true length of a yard. Measuring cloth using brass tacks resulted in the purchaser receiving the exact length of cloth desired. (Source)

Happy Inconvenience Yourself Day!

February 24 is Inconvenience Yourself Day. While the origins are unknown, the spirit of the holiday is to go out of your way to do something nice. This is the perfect day to shovel your neighbor’s driveway, give up your seat on the bus, or visit an elderly relative. (Source)

How to write about Inconvenience Yourself Day:

  • Describe the nicest thing someone has done for you.
  • Share something special you’ve done for someone else.
  • Explain how your community could benefit from more appreciation.
  • Tell someone how much you appreciate them and write about their reaction.

Reviewed – Turning Pro: Tap Your Inner Power and Create Your Life’s Work

I have many friends who include The War of Art among their favorite reads. I’ve never read it, but the praise made me curious about the Steven Pressfield’s latest book called Turning Pro. I really wanted to like this book, which is intended for artists and entrepreneurs. The book is about facing your fears, following your dreams, and living as your authentic self.

Although there are a few nuggets of wisdom, I did not enjoy this book at all. Thankfully it’s short (132 pages). The chapters are usually only a paragraph or two in length; the shortest chapter had only six words. Instead of inspiring me, I felt like I was too stupid (or shallow) to understand the author’s esoteric writing style. He seems to believe that both creating art and avoiding art involve torturing yourself. I can see this book possibly being beneficial for a blocked artist, but otherwise I would skip it.

What is a “Straw Poll”?

A straw poll is an unofficial vote, used to get an understanding of attendees’ feelings toward a certain issue. Straw polls use the honor system and are non-binding. The name refers to a straw (a thin plant stalk) that will bend based on the direction of the wind. In the same way, groups make future decisions based on the direction of the members’ opinions. (Source)