Here again are my five favorite things of the past week, my personally recommended must-read & must-watch list. Take 'em or leave 'em.
IN THIS EDITION:
5. What it was like inside Sony during the North Korean hack; 4. Will Ferrell sings Frozen; 3. How many people don't love their jobs; 2. How Larry David Got Started; 1. A movie you HAVE to see
5. An Exclusive Look at Sony’s Hacking Saga | Vanity Fair
Unlike a lot of the world, I didn't follow the Sony hack real-time. There was so much hoopla and noise I found it frustrating to get the real story. Here now Vanity Fair gives a holistic inside look at how the North Koreans took down one of the biggest studios in Hollywood. From Seth Rogan arguing The Interview is a free speech issue, to the elite hacking unite of the North Korean military, to Obama's snub and subsequent critique of Sony, this tells it all. North Korea published the salaries of top execs, the screenplay for the new James Bond movie, cuts of the Annie movie pre-release. Like many of us, I have more and more of my life in the cloud so I can't help but be afraid of the risks that entails. Great read to get a sense of the danger.
4. Lip Sync Battle with Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart
This segment is consistently fun. My previous favorite was with Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Stephen Merchant. This one probably tops it. Great stuff. I'd have to give the award to Fallon for his second number. Going all out for laughs.
3. 70% of Americans are Unhappy at Work
Gallup recently published the results of a survey that says 7 out of 10 U.S. workers are either disengaged from their work or actively hate their work. Yeah, yeah, so what? No, this is HORRIBLE. Work is the thing most of us do with most of our time for most of our life and only 30% of people like what they are doing? How can this be? I had lunch with a friend this week and he asked if I thought it was because the jobs were actually bad or if people had bad attitudes about it. There's no way to know, I guess, but my bet is that three things are at play: 1. Some jobs are really bad - bad managers, uninteresting work. 2. Some people have the wrong attitudes - they have unrealistic expectations about what their work should be and aren't realizing they have it pretty good. 3. A lot of people are in the wrong jobs. They should be doing something else, something they'd be excited to do, but are doing something else because they feel trapped. Trapped either by expectations of others or by their own financial need. I wouldn't mind if my life's work were about helping people do good work - work that meant something to them and that was good because it helped people. More thoughts on that later
2. Sitting Shiva with Larry David
So a few weeks ago I posted about how Jerry Seinfeld got his start. Now here's a great article from New York Magazine about his writing partner, Larry David. The famous curmudgeon has written a Broadway Show, Fish in the Dark, about a family funeral for the patriarch. (By the way if that's a genre you're interested in, I highly recommend the new play Wyoming written by Brian Watkins and directed by Danya Taymor.) The picture created of David is of a man who is constantly in two places at once: he is with you in the moment (kind of) and then he is above the moment, noticing it, commenting on it, looking for the awkward humor in it. Exactly the kind of mind that would create an entire half-hour Seinfeld episode about waiting in line at a Chinese restaurant.
1. Trailer for THE DROP BOX
Every once in a great while, you come across a story that stops you in your tracks. Every year hundreds of babies in Seoul, South Korea are abandoned to die by their mothers. This is the story of a man who built a "dropoff box" to take them in. My words won't do it justice at this point. Instead, just watch. As my friend Matt said, I challenge you to watch this without a tear in your eye.