The Things We Say

They aren't always the things we mean

I wrote another newsletter for today, but to riff on James Corden's monologue last night .. I am pretty sure that not one of you woke up this morning and thought ... I wonder what John Philpin thinks about everything that is going on.  Not only that, but the current news cycle of 'ALL People First'  rapidly drifts into politics, which I do attempt to stay away from. Instead ... please enjoy today's 'pause'.

Time Is What Keeps Everything From Happening At Once.

Ray Cummings (according to Quote Investigator)

Maybe, but let me tell you that if true - then time is starting to break.

Salvador Dali - The Persistence of Memory - 1931

Just last week I was talking to a long time friend (he doesn’t like to be called an ‘old friend’) and he commented how he enjoys reading my “blog .. newsletter .. whichever it is …” each week. We explored the definitions a little bit, agreed that this was indeed a newsletter, moved on and I n’er gave it another thought until I read this from Robin Rendle the next day.

I think the weird thing about newsletters is that they’re so...formal. It would make for a cruel and unusual punishment if I sent an email out to a bunch of people that was nonsensical, doesn’t conclude properly, doesn’t have some sense of progress or I-don’t-know-what. But with a blog post? I don’t care!

In fact, that’s the graceful thing about blogs and personal sites. They can be just for you; scribbling down notes in a public but non-important way. It doesn’t have to lead anywhere, and there doesn’t have to be this big pretense that you’re the smartest person in the room.

A blog post can start in the middle of nothing, go nowhere, and then just...

… a little ‘weBlog’ humor there. And it got me to thinking about language again. How we use words and phrases without thinking.

Sometimes we get so caught up in working out how to communicate across national boundaries, we forget that we can barely communicate within them. That’s why language is one of the eight tenets of People First. You might recall a couple of earlier pieces here and here. And in light of that, we all know that this newsletter is nothing to do with ‘news’. Most newsletters are nothing to do with news. It’s not even a ‘letter’ … another word that goes back to when a ‘phone’ was used to ‘telephone’ people and was connected to a wall by a wire.

A long way round to remind you that beyond this newsletter, People First does have a blog, a Podcast is on the horizon and a community discussion is already runing. What you might not know is that I also have a book coming out shortly and in anticipation of that, I have launched a campaign to build my newsletter list. New people are joining the community that haven’t been part of this past year’s journey. This then is my opportunity to provide some detail. Take that as done. A warm welcome to my new readers.

And to conclude, this from the ‘mighty Rushkoff’ and Team Human. A reminder of how language is so ingrained in us, and that it would serve us well to take stock of where we are and check-in from time to time.


“In the Industrial Age, as mechanical clocks dictated human time and factory machines outpaced human workers, we began to think of ourselves in very mechanical terms. We described ourselves as living in a “clockwork universe,” in which the human body was one of the machines. Our language slowly became invested with mechanical metaphors: We needed to grease the wheels, crank up the business, dig deeper, or turn a company into a well-oiled machine. Even everyday phrases, such as “fueling up” for eating lunch or “he has a screw loose” for thinking illogically, conveyed the acceptance of humans as mechanical devices.

As a society, we took on the machine’s values of efficiency, productivity, and power as our own. We sought to operate faster, with higher outputs and greater uniformity.”

~ Douglas Rushkoff

Douglas Rushkoff | The Damage We Do to Ourselves When We Try to Function Like Computers.

“conveyed the acceptance of humans as mechanical devices” … that idea remains ingrained two centuries later!

As always my thanks and appreciation for your continued support, comments and attention. Please like the postshare through your social channels of choice and forward the email to colleagues, friends and family that want to join us on this journey and don’t forget to send me your thoughts. Inspired? Why not comment on the post itself (like here).