I met a woman once and, as our conversation went to what we do for work, I told her that my background is marketing and so a lot of my time with dignify is spent doing marketing-types of things. She replied, “Oh, yeah, I get it. Trying to convince people who wouldn’t want it to buy your stuff. I have a relative who breeds dogs and she works so hard trying to find and convince people to buy her dogs.” Ummm… No. I am not interested in convincing anyone to buy something that they do not want or need!
A 7-months-long Bangladeshi wage board finally, recently announced the new minimum monthly salary for garment workers in that country. Coming in at half of what workers had asked for, the response has been: protest, locked-out factories, and police open fire.
This week, I finished the book Lessons in Chemistry (Bonnie Garmus) & I loved it. I also read news stories of horror & atrocity. I watched basketball games. I set up a playpen. I took down the playpen. I went for walks. I laid on my office floor in despair. I wrote. I deleted. I cringed. I cheered. In these complicated times where we know so much, how do we respond? How do we make sense of it all?
"Pumpkin Spice" — introduced in 2003 by Starbucks as a limited-run, seasonal latte flavor — has expanded far beyond even food & drink to a completely pervasive, mostly-loved, theme of North American, autumnal culture. To celebrate "National Pumpkin Spice Day", I wanted to reflect on: Why is this flavor/smell/experience so popular?! And, what can we learn about ourselves as shoppers and consumers from the mighty impact of the PSL?
I have long embraced & advocated for seeking out products with longevity & versatility. Buy once, buy to last, don’t be tricked by trends or fast consumption. This is not an innovative concept and I am far from a trailblazer of minimalism! Blogs, Tiktokers, & courses abound on capsule wardrobes & all manner of conscious shopping.
I’ve just finished reading the marvelous book Unreasonable Hospitality, by restauranteur and hospitality enthusiast, Will Guidara. The book is part foodie memoir, part management/business manual, and fully inspiring to creativity & connection. One of the concepts that he discusses is “The Rule of 95/5”: Manage 95 percent of your business down to the penny; spend the last 5 percent “foolishly”.
If you buy something in a store, there is a cost to get there: in time and in gas (or other transportation expenses). If you purchased something to be delivered, there are costs there, too — hidden costs, perhaps, but costs (to somebody) nonetheless. When we think about it all too much, it can get our heads spinning. What is the “true cost” of every dollar I spend, every item I buy?
When I travelled to Bangladesh in January 2020, most of my time was in Dhaka — the capital city and home office location for our production partner, Basha. For two days of the trip, however, I planned to travel to another production centre in another, smaller city. During this time, a Friends of Basha manager and I would visit the local Salvation Army office and go with the leader to “tour” the brothel across the street.