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Showing posts from 2013
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When my husband complains about the Circle of Death, I'm like:
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My fiancé trying to get back into school mode:

The Business September 4, 2013: Windy City Of Angels Edition

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This week, The Business welcomes four, count 'em, four great guests. Two hail from the greater Bay Area, and two come from Los Angeles, though by way of very different places. Fight your post-Burning Man depression, or continue your Bay Bridge jubilation this Wednesday with all your pals at The Biz.

FROM THE WILDS OF LOS ANGELES

We have Brandie Posey and Brendan McGowan. Ms. Posey is a standup comedian, podcaster, and karaoke jockey extraordinaire. She's originally from Annapolis, Maryland, but lives in LA, where she does her podcast Lady to Lady, which also has a live show at the prestigious UCB Theatre. She also once played Brody Jenner's sister on MTV's Bromance.



(Twitter: @Brandazzle)

Brendan McGowan is a standup comedian and the walking embodiment of the city of Chicago. He's a audience butcher, joke maker, stacker of premises, player with language, and the nation's freight handler. His comedy is stormy, husky, and brawling - truly, he's witty, with big sh…
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Witnessing my husband's behavior at the Bus:
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How most women are with their men by this age: How it is with my MBA boyfriend and I:
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First year students and partners always look at second years like:
*But next year when they have jobs and some of the best friendships of their lives, they'll understand.
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When people ask me if I'm looking for a job while my husband is in B-School:

The Business August 28th 2013: The Back to Business Edition

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Get your Trapper Keepers and your troll doll pen toppers, The Business is back in session.

We’ve picked a few teacher’s pets to celebrate with, like Kevin O’Shea!



Established in 1984 following the mergers of Steven and Cathy O’Shea, Kevin O’Shea has been one of San Francisco’s leading manufactures of mirth, laughter, hilarity and all around good times! Kevin has been commonly described as clever, absurd, awkward but in a funny way and too smart for his own good. He has been seen on the Independent Film Chanel and ComedyCentral.com. He is a favorite of comedy festivals such as: The SF Sketch Fest and the Bridgetown Comedy Festival. Go see him now as his 4th quarter productivity has never been higher!

From the Far East, Joe Alfano!

Based in New York City and proud native New Yorker, Joe produces “Thunderbird”, a monthly comedy show. He performs at The Broadway Comedy Club, New York Comedy Club, and Laughing Devil Comedy Club. In 2012, Joe was featured on James Holeva’s “Let’s…

The Business August 21st 2013: The Wizard from the Far North Edition

This week’s show promises to be magical.

Seattle is full of wonderous creatures, Emmett Montgomery is a prize among them.

Utah born, Seattle based comedian Emmett Montgomery found the comedy stage in late 2004 and has been failing beautifully ever since. Emmett has been involved in a lot of things including critically acclaimed comedy collectives, post apocalyptic variety shows, underground wrestling leagues and family friendly comedy nights in pizza restaurants. Mr. Montgomery has been featured the film “Seattle Komedy Documentary”, the coffee table book “Seattle 100: a portrait of a city” and the Bumbershoot, Bridgetown Comedy and Sasquatch festivals. In addition to wandering the country telling jokes he currently curates and hosts a love letter to Seattle in the form of variety show/sharing party entitled “Weird and Awesome with Emmett Montgomery” at the beloved Annex Theatre and is a member of the Seattle chapter of the Bushwick Book Club, a collection of musicians and…
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When I show up for a B-school event that I really didn't want to go to, I'm like:
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How I feel as a partner at B-school events:
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What these two years feel like:
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After a 3 month hiatus...It's back to our regularly scheduled programming...

Five minutes into any conversation with an MBA:

Five minutes into a conversation with another partner:

The Business August 14th, 2013: The Between New Breaking Bads Edition

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SURE this week won’t feel like a never-ending yawn of time stretching through the ages into the infinite as we wait for more Hank and Walt, but just in case, we put together an excellent mid-week distraction.

We are delighted that our guest for this whole month will be back, the delightful Anna Seregina. She will be joined by the HIGHLY ADDICTIVE Kate Willett.


Kate Willett is a San Francisco based comedian and actress. She recently appeared as a performer in SF Sketchfest, and regularly performs at clubs and theaters all over CA. As an actress, she has performed throughout the United States with companies such as Shakespeare and Company, Word for Word, Woman’s Will and the Samuel Beckett Theater in Dublin, Ireland. She is the host of a weekly radio show, called The Mission Position on radiovalencia.fm. She’s also the co-producer of the weekly Mission Position show in Lost Weekend Video’s famous Cine Cave, Comikaze Lounge, and Comedy at Deluxe.

We’ll also get a little bump…

The Business August 6th, 2013: The From Russia With Jokes Edition

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JUST ADDED: Special guest Sheng Wang! You know Sheng from his half-hour special on Comedy Central, and from generally being the funniest dude in the world. We're glad to have him back at the Biz.

This week, and every week in August, we welcome friend of The Business and super cool lady, Anna Seregina.


Anna Seregina is a San Francisco-based stand-up comic and performer. She was born in Moscow, Russia, which could explain her deep-rooted cynicism. It could also explain nothing. After being involved in theater and improv for nearly a decade and being funny for nearly a lifetime, she decided to take the plunge into stand-up comedy. Her style can nearly be defined as vocal and un-lady-like, drawing heavily on what little life experience she has. She has been described as having the "worst aura." She has performed in the 2013 & 2012 SF Sketchfest, the inaugural SF Comedy & Burrito Festival, the 2012 SF Comedy Day Festival, and the Bruise Cruise Festival. She…

The Business July 31st, 2013: The Summer Fun in the Sun (or maybe fog) Edition

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Come join us for hot fun in the Summertime before its not summer anymore and we have to have fall time fun. What I’m really saying is, let’s kill some time together before the return of Pumpkin Spice lattes!!

YOU KNOW WE GOT GUESTS.


George Chen has finally found a proper outlet for his brand of sarcasm and self-deprecation. These traits were ill-suited to the other worlds he has occupied as a musician, writer, and filler of 1099 forms. As a promoter he has organized comedy shows on a moving bus, at a still-life drawing session, and inside a comic book store. Of these attempts to put on comedy in unlikely locations, the best thus far has been the weekly showcase Cynic Cave at Lost Weekend Video (organized with Kevin O’Shea). He also co-produces the monthly multimedia show Talkies.
As a performer he has appeared at Holy Fuck, Venice Underground Comedy, The Business, and the Porchlight Storytelling Series.

Bart Freebairn is a stand up comedy comedian. He has been doing comedy …

The Business July 24th, 2013: The Put Your Hand In Your Mouth Edition

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This week The Business welcomes a home town hero and co-host of one of our favorite shows, Hand to Mouth, the indomitable James Fluty!

James Fluty is a San Francisco comic and co-creator of Hand to Mouth a monthly, topic-based comedy show. He was described by tonegazer.com as “funny and intellectually stimulating” and described by the New York Times as part of a “shockingly high percentage of adults without health insurance”. He has performed at major clubs including the San Francisco Punchline, the Purple Onion and Rooster T. Feathers. He’s appeared on Current Television and KOFY TV and in the award-winning short film Tiger Cop which can be seen at Funnyordie.com. He also co-wrote and starred in the mockumentary Awareness of the Outer World which became a You-tube featured video.

Plus we are making new friends! We have two guests this week in town from New York ON BUSINESS.

Amaya Perea writes for Cracked, Hahajk, Hello Giggles, Funny or Die and her own bio. She’s perfor…

The awful Zero Hours Contract

This eminent and good friend has often remarked that I have turned into a socialist (even a communist) in my old age. He claims my writing in this blog is veering constantly to the left. Other readers of my blog ,might wonder, if this is left leaning then what will the true loony left be called. But I know I am going to get a mouthful from him for this post, which is admittedly leftwards tilting.
On matters relating to labour and worker law, I have often argued that countries have brought excessive legislation defending the existing worker and making it expensive to employ any more.Who in his right mind will employ a worker in France, for example. All this misguided legislation only keeps out a large portion of the young out of the workforce. Companies need some flexibility to ramp their worforce up or down based on conditions of their business and marketplace. Minus this flexibility, no modern company is going to hire.
But companies have gone to the other extreme and misused the flexib…

What the Washington Post and Boston Globe Sales Tell Us About the New Breed of Owners

The sales of the Washington Post to Jeff Bezos and the Boston Globe to John Henry raise the question why people would want to own newspapers if they aren’t doing so for obvious financial gain. There are clearly people who want to own papers for political purposes so they can directly influence debate and policy.This is certainly the case for the ultra-conservative Koch brothers, who have been trying to buy the Los Angeles Times this past year. But Bezos and Henry don't seem to fit that mold. Bezos’ purposes for buying the Post are not the pursuit of profit. He certainly would produce better returns putting more effort into Amazon or another commercial firm. John Henry can expect far more returns from effort in his investment firm or his sports empire than the Globe. So why are they buying legacy media?  The answers lie in human traits.All of us need diversions. We need toys to play with; things to spark our interest and imaginations.  Bezos can clearly bring ideas and expertise gained…

This is not a lascivious post !

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Does man (and woman) have a foot fetish ? I think so. What is it about feet that makes people get completely bowled over by the marketers and pamper and cosset it. No I'm not talking about the ridiculous pedicure. I'm talking about footwear and the amounts we splash on it.Each one of us is an Imelda Marcos - before you snigger, go and count the footwear in the shoe rack.
Hyperbole dominates the footwear marketing industry. To think that by wearing "LeBron Zoom Soldier", I'll be able to dunk a basketball is pure fantasy, but it appears I am willing to buy the dream for $299 or thereabouts.  The sight of a Rajalakshmi tottering on high heels on the mistaken assumption that it makes her a 6 footer is equally humorous - I don't have the heart to tell her that her width is somewhat more than her height ! But surely the game has been taken to an altogether new level by Under Armour.
Under Armour is a sports outfit company. They mostly make sports clothing, shamelessl…

Ambient news: All the news most people want

Ambient news is proving a significant challenge to news organizations trying to serve readers on multiple digital platforms and maintain their print and broadcast news operations.

Contemporary technologies all around us are now delivering breaking news, sports scores, and market updates on electronic screens and displays in elevators, taxis and buses, bars and restaurants, on the sides of buildings, through smartphones, and via social media.
In years past, we all had to deliberately turn to newspapers or radio and television newscasts, or at least glance at headlines at news stands, to get a quick overview of major events. That era is past.
Today news is free and ubiquitous and, unfortunately, provides all the news that most people want. This is bad news for those trying to provide news commercially.
In the past, newspapers and newscasts filled their space and time with non-news features and information designed to attract audiences that wanted only a little news. Most newspapers, for exa…

The Business July 17th, 2013: The Beauty Bar and the Beast Edition

Can you do the CanCan at Cannes?  You can ask this week’s guest that question and many more* as we welcome the fabulous Anna Seregina!

Anna Seregina is a San Francisco-based stand-up comic and performer. She was born in Moscow, Russia, which could explain her deep-rooted cynicism. It could also explain nothing. After being involved in theater and improv for nearly a decade and being funny for nearly a lifetime, she decided to take the plunge into stand-up comedy. Her style can nearly be defined as vocal and un-lady-like, drawing heavily on what little life experience she has. She has been described as having the "worst aura." She has performed in the 2013 & 2012 SF Sketchfest, the inaugural SF Comedy & Burrito Festival, the 2012 SF Comedy Day Festival, and the Bruise Cruise Festival. She is a regular performer at the Porchlight Storytelling series, and has been picked as one of six emerging stand-up acts in the Bay Area comedy scene by Bold Italic. Most facts about he…

The Business July 3rd, 2013: The Drenndependence Day Edition

Before we all take flight on bald eagles into the night’s sky, ablaze with spectacular fireworks (made in China), to celebrate the breech birth of this pretty bitch Amurrica let’s get together and celebrate our greatest national tradition, Business.

With Drennon Davis!

From his elaborate characters and sketches, to his provocative songs and animation, Drennon has made a name for himself as one of the most innovative minds in today’s comedy scene. His live performances of the Imaginary Radio Program combine live music and beat-boxing with one-man sketches into a show
that the Los Angeles Comedy Bureau writes "not only lives up to its name, but exceeds expectation in what you could possibly think it is." Drennon was featured on NBC's Last Call and was a semi finalist on Last Comic Standing.

And THE FUTURE: Kelly Anneken!

Kelly Anneken is the co-founder & artistic director of East Bay feminist sketch comedy troupe Femikaze, sketch writer for SF talk show "A Funny Nigh…

The Business June 26, 2013: The Business: The League of their Own Edition

This week, it just so happens that we get to laugh at a buncha Peaches.  Who knows, maybe we’ll even be managed by Tom Hanks!!  THERE’S NO CRYING IN BUSINESS.

This week’s line up is full of heavy hitters like Colleen Watson!

Colleen may be perceived as cynical, but that’s just because life is crap. She’s the kind of girl you’d get drunk with at a bar because she was sitting next to you, you’re both drinking, and she won’t leave. She is a rising comic in the San Francisco comedy scene and was a part of the 5 Funny Females tour. She’s a regular at Rooster T Feathers and the San Francisco Punch Line. She has worked with acts such as Dave Attell, Doug Benson, Chris Kattan, Laurie Kilmartin and Arj Barker. You can see on stages nightly through out the Bay Area.

The infectious (in a good way) Shanti Charan!

Shanti Charan’s bubbly personality and contagious smile lure in audiences and her comedic abilities keeps them laughing. She is a fast-rising fresh face in the Bay Area comedy scene. Her abi…

Knock Knock ; Who's there ? Nobody !

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By any reckoning, this should be an extremely successful business. You have a fantastic distribution set up - reaching every nook and corner of your geography that nobody else can - in what is essentially a distribution business. You have an envious relationship with the consumers. In many places your representative was a trusted friend and confidante. People looked forward to his arrival. You had a state sanctioned monopoly. You have a significant price advantage. You enjoy innumerable fiscal benefits that no competitor enjoys. You have a great brand , so great that collection of your merchandise was a major hobby with an English word specifically only for this. Songs have been written about you that have reached the top of the charts - here (this is the first version - the Beatles and the Carpenters came later) , in case you are musically inclined. 
With such advantages. you should be roaring away to glory, shouldn't you ? And yet you are a colossal failure and a sitting duck in …

Reorganisations - the last refuge of the incompetent

There is one ritual that happens in all companies periodically without fail - an organisation restructuring. Old structures and divisions are thrown out of the window and new structures are announced. HR types take great pleasure in redrawing organisation charts, rewriting job descriptions and the like. Communication types have an orgasm designing communication packs and writing words like "restructuring to stimulate growth", "bringing the organisation closer to consumers" and such other waffle. CEOs like to stand up to the press and announce the change , to make up for lack of anything else to say about their companies. MIcrosoft did just that today, the trigger for this post. Steve Ballmer's version of the blah blah is "We are ready to take Microsoft in bold new directions". Balderdash. I have never seen a more futile activity than an organisation rejig. And yet companies do it all the time.
The pattern is all too predictable. If the current organisa…

Backstretch Health Care & the Affordable Care Act

The recent federal government announcement that employer responsibility for providing health insurance to their employees under the Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”) will be delayed for at least another year is not good news for backstretch workers.
In most of the US, grooms and hotwalkers – the lowest-paid workers on the racetrack – have no health care coverage at all. If they’re injured on the job, they get workers’ compensation payments – and may or may not have a job to come back to when they’ve recovered. And in some states, jockeys and exercise riders who are injured on the track are covered under separate workers comp. pools, like New York’s Jockey Injury Compensation Fund, paid for with a combination of trainer per-stall charges and a percentage of owners’ purse winnings.
But, apart from those job-related injuries, backstretch workers are pretty much on their own when it comes to health care. And, if they have spouses and children, their families are out in the cold as well.…

No men please

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Apparently men are heavier than women.  Did you know that ?  In many parts of the globe, that is probably true, but in India ?? Can you believe that Rajalakshmi, she of the considerable proportions, is inferior to Ramamritham, when it comes to the weight stakes ?? I somehow, seriously doubt that. But not, it appears GoAir, an India based airline.  This is the news from GoAir, that set off this post.
Cabin attendants, flight attendants, stew, whatever name you wish to call them, are predominantly women, everywhere in the world. It all started in the initial days of flying. A pretty young air hostess was part of the decor of the plane. Nervous travelers, usually pot bellied men, could relax by looking at a smiling pretty face. As the years went by, the pot bellied business traveler remained the same, at least pot belly wise, but the nervousness disappeared. The flight attendants meanwhile aged, and age discrimination laws in the US and Europe ensure that these days its a matronly woman g…

I want to be a garbage collector

The story that two garbage cleaners in New York were fined and forced to retire after being caught accepting a tip of $ 5 caught my eye.  Not for the reason you might think. This story would provoke hoots of laughter in my country where nothing happens in the public service without a gratuity.  Even in NY, this must be an incredulous story - every man and a dog demands tips shamelessly for just existing in the same space as you. But the real reason this story has prompted this post was buried somewhere in the middle. The two garbage men apparently netted $100,000 each, including overtime. Granted that they had put in long years of service. Granted that they probably earned lots of overtime. But still a wage of $ 100,000 for a garbage collector shows everything that is wrong about the United States. No wonder they lose jobs by the droves to India and China. No wonder unemployment is a stubborn problem. But this post is not to highlight the completely unrealistic pricing for labour in the…

Inquilab Zindabad ? No ! _____ (fill in the blanks) Murdabad .

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What is common between a park demolition and a raise in bus fares. Well, something profound , I believe. Because in the last one month, I dare suggest that these were the two most important events in the world (NSA be damned ; as if that was a surprise)

The park issue was the first and it happened in Istanbul, Turkey.  The government had planned to demolish the Taksim Gezi Park and use the space to reconstruct the historic Taksim military barracks. About 50 environmentalists occupied the Park in protest. The police , predictably evicted them. That snowballed into massive nationwide protests and a huge Occupy Taksim Square movement started.  The issue of demolition of the Park has now given way to a protest against all sorts of unrelated issues and drawing crowds numbering in the tens of thousands. It is now an anti government protest without a coherent theme or leaders. A big section of the population is just protesting without a clear understanding of what they are protesting against …

The Business June 19th, 2013: The Birthday Bash Edition

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