Year end trip and reading
Tuesday, January 4th, 2005
We had a great trip to NYC last week. Lines were horrendous as furners lined up to blow cheap $s. But the touristic cliches — Statue of Liberty and Empire State Building — were worth it. Breakfast every morning at the 3 star coffee shop on 86th street. We each loved Slava’s Snowshow and brought home lots of confetti. We snuck into MOMA, the Met, the Museum of Natural History and the Guggenheim. (Does anyone but me think its creepy to celebrate the beauty of art of Aztec culture, which is one of history’s most methodically brutal?) Dinner with the Gages. Overheard a 8-year-old’s comment about a 17 year old: “Jesse has attitude… what’s attitude?” And this comment about a 87-year-old: “She drives badly, but she drives fast.
New year’s reading:
Finally, I’ve been rereading the Loyalty Effect, one of my favorite books. The book is all about how profitable, fun business depends on customer longevity, which depends in turn on intelligent, long-term staff, which (interesting but obvious once you think about it), in turn, depend on very patient owners (not public shareholders!) Owners/staff/customers sticking around 10 years rather than 5 makes a company 3 to 20 times more profitable. Basically, the idea of accrued interest applies in all three cases — a little growth every year adds up and everyone in the chain gets smarter, easier to deal with and more profit-generating.
(I’ve just realized that one of the fundemantal problems with volatile inflation is that it disrupts this long-term planning, tempting people to grab today’s dollar rather than wait patiently for a hard-to-value $1.13 next year.)