Weekend Inspiration – Failure leads to your Reinvention (Conan O’Brien’s 2011 Dartmouth College Commencement Address)

(Money on my Mind) McDonald’s will close 700 stores this year – What do you think their mistakes were? Will they survive?

2

mcdonalds and golden krust*304

McDonald’s closed 350 stores in the first three months of 2015 and is planning to close an additional 350 by the end of the year.

The struggling fast food giant recently announced it was closing 350 poorly performing stores this year, but on Wednesday McDonald’s admitted it had closed a previously unannounced 350 stores in the U.S., Japan and China.

“Earlier on Wednesday, McDonald’s reported an 11% decrease in revenue and a 30% drop in profit for the first three months of year, a continuation of its troubles in the last two years as it has struggled to compete with new U.S. competitors, a tough economy in Europe and a food safety scare in Asia,” Fortune reported.

McDonald’s started falling into a steep decline after customers began seeking healthier alternatives, a decline which may prove terminal for the world’s largest fast food chain.

920x920

It was definitely a sign of the times when Hillary Clinton stopped to eat at Chipotle while campaigning in Iowa earlier this month, two decades after her husband famously stopped at a McDonald’s while jogging.

“The world is starting to ask what they’re truly eating in their food — and the new conglomerate of natural grocers and restaurants are trailblazing the way into an entirely new economic environment,” Anthony Gucciardi wrote. “In other words: people are simply tired of shoveling garbage into their bodies, and they’re not going to put up with it anymore.”

And price conscious consumers aren’t just limited to McDonald’s nowadays: natural food outlets such as Whole Foods are offering organic foods at the same price as a Big Mac with fries.

The Truth Hurts – Give them a Reason to Hate

2

image

Money on my Mind – Stay Ready to Get Ready

image

MONEY ON MY MIND – WAYS TO SAVE MONEY

3

financial-wellness

1. Shave some extra cents off your gas costs by checking out GasPriceWatch.com to find the cheapest offerings in your area. For example, you’ll find that the Chevron on Olympic Boulevard in Los Angeles is selling gas for 22 cents less than a Mobil station a few blocks down the road. 

2. Nix name brands and start buying generic toiletries and cleaning products in bulk. Better yet, take shopping trips with friends to Costco so you can all split that bulk pack of toilet paper.

3. Join your local library. You might be shocked to find that its DVD collection is stocked and up-to-date (not to mention totally free). If you normally rent one movie per week from the video store or Netflix, you can save over $200 in a year!

4. Unplug your appliances like coffee pots, toasters, hair dryers, and computer cords when you leave the house. According to Energystar.gov, it costs you $100 per year to power appliances in standby mode (especially ones with features like clock displays). When you go on vacation, it’s a good idea (both for your wallet and the environment) to unplug large energy consumers like entertainment centers. 

5. Cliché as it may sound, skip your morning Starbucks latte. You’ll save about 190 calories and $3 per day. You can still make your homemade coffee feel special by adding a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg.

6. Get cash back on your clothing purchases. It sucks when you buy a piece of clothing full-price, then see it on sale a week later. Hang on to your receipts, because larger chains like the Gap, Banana Republic, and Old Navy will refund you the difference on items that go on sale as long as you present a receipt within 14 days of the original purchase.

7. Need new furniture? Before heading off to Ikea, check out Freecycle.orga site where users list things they don’t want anymore. Or, try your local Craigslist.com listings for moving sales (oftentimes people are in a pinch and will sell items for “best offer” just to get rid of them).

8. Work out for free. Look up donation-based yoga studios in your area so you can pay what you can (instead of a normal $12-$20 per class). Similarly, many yoga, dance, and Pilates studios offer new student incentives such as two weeks of classes for only $20. Can’t afford a personal trainer? Check out iTrain.com,where you can download personalized workouts for your iPod for as little as $7.99 a session. Other cheap options: Go for a hike in the fall foliage, jog outdoors, or organize a game of touch football with friends (a great excuse to get them to invite single guys!). 

9. Think about your cash. Always know exactly how much money you have on you. It will prevent mindless spending (and the shock when you realize you’re out). Also, plan out your day so you withdraw the money you need from your home bank, avoiding ATM fees.

10. Do your holiday shopping on the cheap by hunting down cool stuff at thrift and vintage shops where you can find heartwarming items for less than 20 bucks. Think music boxes, quirky costume jewelry, vintage postcards to frame, or collectors’ plates. 

11. Bring the party home. Ask friends to come over with a bottle of wine for a game night on Saturday. Offering a simple, homemade dessert like cookies or a pie won’t cost more than a few bucks if you already have the basic ingredients on hand. If you absolutely have to get out, then organize a get-together at a bar with a happy hours special. Make the occasion more festive by creating a Facebook invite with a quirky theme like “International Talk Like a Pirate Day!” One more tip: check out Myopenbar.coma site that lists events at bars with free booze in several cities including New York, Miami, and Chicago.

12. Do more research. It might be painful to actually look at the breakdown of your expenses, but it’s the best way to cut down on costs.  (Hint: you can probably get both used or at your local library instead of paying full price).

Credit: Cosmopolitan

Poetry Mondays – Meta Me by Ryan Fu

3

FunnyPart-com-the_internet_has_spoken

When did the online

version of me

become better than

the real me.

There’s something wrong

with the world 

when people want to hang out 

via Skype.

Where we spend half our lives

looking at nugget porn

&

grumpy cats

watching untalented people

making a fool of themselves

to extend their 15 mins of whoring.

Don’t I have enough pixels,

aren’t I better than HD quality? 

Didn’t I receive enough 

likes on my page?

How many followers do you need

to be consider someone to like? 

Fuck your LEFT

&

RIGHT swipe

The Oracle was right 

we’re all trapped 

in cyber purgatory 

permanently signed on

for whole world to judge

as our footsteps gets traced,

documented

&

collected

without us even knowing

or

consenting to it.

Building a case

that the real you

    sucks

    &

      the virtual you 

is much better

because they can

     control you.

Sooner

or

later 

the real me

will disappear 

into Matrix

leaving behind 

my digital footprint

&

my Google searches

for Carrot Top.

RYAN FU

Unknown

THE HATED ONES

Buy it on Amazon.com

Be Like Bacon (Francis Bacon) Knowledge is Power

4

image

Weekend Inspiration – “If today were the last day of my life” (Steve Jobs)

WOMEN CRUSH WEDNESDAY- THE WOMEN OF GAME OF THRONES (What are you’re thoughts on last week’s episode?

game-of-thrones-618x400

WRITTEN BY: RYAN FU @FU_BEATZ

Game of Thrones is an American fantasy drama television series created for HBO by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss. It is an adaptation of A Song of Ice and FireGeorge R. R. Martin‘s series of fantasy novels, the first of which is titled A Game of Thrones.  The series, set on the fictional continents of Westeros and Essos at the end of a decade-long summer, interweaves several plot lines. The first follows the members of several noble houses in a civil war for the Iron Throne of the Seven Kingdoms; the second covers the rising threat of the impending winter and the mythical creatures of the North; the third chronicles the attempts of the exiled last scion of the realm’s deposed dynasty to reclaim the throne. Through its morally ambiguous characters, the series explores the issues of social hierarchy, religion, loyalty, corruption, civil war, crime, and punishment. It is the most recent big-budget work to have contributed to the popularity of the fantasy genre in mainstream media.

Game of Thrones has obtained an exceptionally broad and active international fan base. It received widespread acclaim by critics, although its use of nudity and violence has caused controversy. The series has won numerous awards and nominations, including a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Drama Series in all three seasons, a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Television Series – Drama, a Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation in Long Form, and a Peabody Award. Among the ensemble cast, Peter Dinklage won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series and the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Series, Miniseries or Television Film for his role as Tyrion Lannister. Filmed in a Belfast studio and on location elsewhere in Northern IrelandMaltaScotlandCroatiaIceland and Morocco, it premiered on HBO in the United States on April 17, 2011. The series was renewed for a fourth season, to debut in the United States on April 6, 2014.

I have loved the show since the beginning because of the great story lines but I love the women in the show because they are equally strong as the men. Plus, all of them are totally sexy even Brienne, I’m into it!

Pictures-Women-Game-Thrones-Emilia-Clarke

Ygritte is a major character in the third and fourth seasons. She initially appeared as a recurring character in the second season and debuted in “The Old Gods and the New.” She is played by Rose Leslie. Ygritte is a woman of the Free Folk who lives north of the Wall. She is part of the force under the leadership of Mance Rayder, the King-Beyond-the-Wall.

ygritte-1024

Sansa Stark is a major character in the firstsecondthird and fourth seasons. She is played by starring cast member Sophie Turner, and debuts in the series premiere. Sansa adopted a direwolf she named “Lady“, but Lady was executed following a dispute between Joffrey and Sansa’s sister,Arya. Sansa was once betrothed to King Joffrey Baratheon. She was initially thrilled at her betrothal, but later experienced Joffrey’s cruelty and watched the execution of her father, Eddard Stark, on his orders. Joffrey has since set aside his betrothal to her in favor of Margaery Tyrell, but Sansa remains a captive of House Lannister in King’s Landing. Sansa is now the lady wife of Lord Tyrion Lannister, following an arranged marriage by his father, Tywin.

Sansa-Stark-game-of-thrones-20742588-1600-1066-1024x682

Cersei Lannister, rarely called Cersei Baratheon, is a major character in the firstsecondthird and fourth seasons. She is portrayed by starring cast member Lena Headey and debuts in the series premiere. Cersei is the widow of King Robert Baratheon and Queen Regent of the Seven Kingdoms. She has installed her son Joffrey Baratheon on the Iron Throne under the false claim that he is a legitimate son from her marriage but he is actually the product of her incestuous relationship with her younger twin brother Ser Jaime Lannister. While acting as the regent, she has troubles controlling King Joffrey’s erratic behavior.

1364584182_lena-headey-game-of-thrones-review-467

Arya Stark is a major character in the firstsecondthird and fourth seasons. She is played by starring cast member Maisie Williams, and debuts in the series premiere. Arya is the younger daughter of Lord Eddard Stark. She is fiercely independent and is often mistaken for a boy. She wields a sword named Needle, a gift from her half-brother, Jon Snow, and she has been trained in the Braavos style of swordfighting. She adopted thedirewolfNymeria, but they have since been separated.

Maisie-Wiliams-as-Arya-Stark-Game-of-Thrones-Garden-of-Bones-590x331
Daenerys Targaryen, sometimes called Dany by her brother Viserys, is a major character in the firstsecondthird and fourth seasons. She is played by starring cast member Emilia Clarke, and debuts in the series premiereShe hatched three dragons by having her petrified dragon eggs placed on Drogo’s funeral pyre, before she walked into the flames to claim them. Her dragons are the first seen in the world for hundreds of years, earning her the sobriquet Mother of Dragons
game-of-thrones-womenthe-true-power-in-westeros--the-women-of-game-of-thrones-k7me5afg
Brienne of Tarth is a major character in the fourth season. She initially appeared as a recurring character in the second and third seasons. She is played by Gwendoline Christie and debuts in “What is Dead May Never Die.” She is a warrior of House Tarth, vassals to House Baratheon. After winning a tournament melee, she is made a member of King Renly Baratheon‘s new Kingsguard, shortly before his assassination. She becomes the sworn sword of Catelyn Stark and vows to avenge Renly’s death. She is charged by Catelyn Stark to return Jaime Lannister to King’s Landing, in an attempt to exchange him for her two daughters she believes are held hostage there.
79lfbH-brienne-of-tarth-actress-gwend-uLRM
Margaery Tyrell, legally Margaery Baratheon, is a major character in the secondthird and fourth seasons. She is played by Natalie Dormer and debuts in “What is Dead May Never Die.” Queen Margaery Tyrell is the widow of King Renly Baratheon, a claimant to the Iron Throne in the War of the Five Kings. Her father Lord Mace Tyrell is the ruler of the Reach. She is betrothed to King Joffrey Baratheon after the Battle of Blackwater.
Margaery-Tyrell

Melisandre, often called Melisandre of Asshai, is a major character in the secondthird and fourth seasons. She is played by starring cast member Carice van Houten and debuts in “The North Remembers.” She is an eastern priestess and a close advisor of Stannis Baratheon.

red-witch

Credit: WikiPedia

The Truth Hurts – Come as you are

3

image