Trend watch: HR, texting, needlepoint

I am in NYC with no money. This used to happen all the time. When my company was running out of money, I would go to San Diego to give a speech and stay at a four-star hotel and not have a cent. And no credit card, of course. I would fly first class, stash all the extra treats they offered, and eat them until I could charge room service to the organization I was speaking to.

I am an ace at traveling without any money, but I'm sick of it. I thought it would never happen again. After all, I have a company credit card.

But I think Ryan Healy canceled my card. Or put a hold on it. I think this is maybe because I charged a ton of garden supplies on the card last weekend. I couldn't find my own card, so I thought I'd just charge a few things and then write the company a check. But then I charged a bunch of roses. Twenty. I mean, the farmer can just dump a bunch of dirt in a pile and dump a bunch of stones around the pile, and voila — I have a huge garden plot. So now I have a sun garden that needs a little more spunk.

I discovered the credit card problem while innocently buying a Bluetooth headset in NYC so I could do the gazillion conference calls we do at Brazen Careerist with a CEO in DC and me on a farm and Ryan and Ryan in Madison. I mean, every meeting is a conference call and I'm getting a neck ache.

Also, I'm getting fat. The conference calls are hard for me. They bore me. I like big ideas, I like hypothesizing and predicting and synthesizing. The job of actually getting stuff done is not that interesting to me. But we are in execution mode at the company, and I need to stay focused. So I eat when I’m on the conference calls. On a good day, I eat ten apples. Cut into halves, then quarters, then cookie cutter shapes like stars. On a bad day it’s one apple and ten apple pies.

So I am needlepointing, to stay focused on execution instead of food.

I remembered about needlepointing from when I was a kid, bored out of my mind in Miami with my grandma, when I spent summers at the Doral, where every evening was black tie, and kids ate dinner alone, in pajamas. I learned to needlepoint there. In between getting sunburned and getting spanked. And the needlepoint was the highlight of my trips. Well that, and my diary, featuring entries like, “Granma hayts me. I hayt Auntie. I want to dye.”

So I thought, maybe I should needlepoint to calm myself down now, so I don't have outbursts on the phone. I am trying to be a more amicable co-worker. I am not sure if it's possible, but I know that to achieve my goal of amicability, I have to stop getting angry on the phone, which comes not out of passion but rather out of boredom.

So now I needlepoint. And then it was so effective that I started needlepointing everywhere. I did it while I had dinner with my mom. She told me I was crazy. I did not say pot calling the kettle black.

I stopped following the color pattern exactly by the time I was so addicted that I was needlepointing while getting a Brazilian. And by the time I was doing needlepoint in the board meeting, I was disregarding the whole pattern in favor of a completely free-form approach, (which, by the way, strikes me as the future of all needlepoint — less rigidity).

Now I'm convinced I need beads for my needlepoint, and I'm actually super happy thinking of spending my days threading beads. The problem is that I don't have any beads. There is a bead store near the farm, but they are not interesting beads, and I knew I was going to New York City, which must be home to many amazing beads. I was thinking that even though I don't know where my bank card is, I have the company card. And now that I've charged garden stuff, the beads won't get anyone any more annoyed.

But now I'm cut off from the credit card. I'm going to have to ask Ryan Healy, or even Ed, our CEO, why. They will say, “Have you been using it for anything weird?” They will ask innocently maybe, although they constantly worry about me and weird. They worry that weird will overshadow all the good about me.

But just because I am not able to charge beads while I'm in NYC with no money does not mean that I am out of good ideas. Don't underestimate my workplace trends genius.

Like, I'm thinking that the future of all writing is short, twitter-like stuff, based on traits we see in Generation Z. This group only uses phones, and very few use phones for email. For Generation Z, email is for diatribes and texting is for communication. There are few laptops in our future. Laptops will be for dorks, and keyboards will be too small for big typing sessions, so only dorks will write long form.

Here's another idea: The future of human resources is death. Good managers will do their own recruiting by having their own great network. (Great article from ERE about how Brazen Careerist will be a part of this revolution.) And RPO companies will take over the legal part of HR. So there won't be a reason for HR. Which is good because it's a cost center, which means there are no line manager positions in HR, so it's a dangerous career move for everyone.

One more trend. This one is for all the investors that my CEO will be worrying about when they read this post. Bloggers will rule the world. They will own advertising, because it's so effective to target audiences through blogs. And blogs have the best content, because if someone writes great content, why would they do it for someone else? They should build their own brand.

Okay. So, look. My career as a workplace genius is not over. And anyway, my career was never built on me being conventional. I think my company is going to have a fit over the gardening charges. I wish I were scared about what will happen. But I am feeling fearless, thinking that if I am simply honest about what's happening, I'll be fine. Or, at least I'll have a blog post.

146 replies
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  1. lcg
    lcg says:

    lol! nice. say a few things to piss them off. then remind them why they keep you around. just remember to have a plan for when that’s not enough! ;)

    • Srini
      Srini says:


      Wow, sounds like you are at your craziest today :). Slow down, try “Art of Living” classes may be ;). You are TOO good – inspiration to me and thousands of your readers, to let the weird overshadow your good…

  2. Casual Surfer
    Casual Surfer says:

    I don’t mean to rain on your parade, but if your company pays for non-work-related expenses for you (such as rose bushes or beads) they have to track that and report it as income they paid TO YOU. It’s a huge PITA for the finance guys to deal with. So, as you work on being less annoying to work with, consider the folks who track expense reimbursements and have to reconcile it all with the company’s tax filing.

    This is one reason I won’t carry a corporate credit card. If I’m in China or Singapore on business, I don’t want to say, “Oh – let me pay for the taxi with *this* card since it’s a shopping trip, and not related to the job I’m doing here.” It’s easier just to have a couple personal cards & use them. It probably annoys my SO, since he can’t know if the massive AmEx bill is due to airfare or a ton of extra spending. But it’s easier for me on a daily basis (and since I do all the sorting out, I’m not burdening anyone else).

  3. DShan
    DShan says:

    I agree with you on the shorthand writing; I’ve been adament about this for a while now. Within my company culture I am considering setting word limits on everything; documentation, basic guidelines, etc. We try to move forward with as little friction as humanly possible and you realize that the first thing to go is internal diatribes via email. If you have an idea spend some time trying to test it…talk about it afterwards and even then keep it brief.

    Blogger will rule the world; that’s an easy one.

  4. Jessica
    Jessica says:

    Penelope, you sound absolutely nuts in this post. I’m concerned.

    For the last six months, you haven’t sounded like someone dishing out great career advice, you’ve sounded like someone losing their already tenuous grip on reality.

    Maybe its time to talk to work about how you feel. Time to redefine your role or something.

    Because charging gardening supplies using the corporate credit card is not only a bad example for the people who read this blog for career advice, it’s just plain stupid.

    You’re not living on the poverty line. Exercise a bit of self control.

    I still love your writing but this blog is getting crazy

    • Tyler Hurst
      Tyler Hurst says:

      Um, yeah. Sounds either spoiled or entitled. Where is her money going? Surely she’s getting paid, right? The San Diego story would piss me off if I was a firm that hired her. That’s not unconventional, that irresponsible.

      What’s next, how to steal followed by panhandling? Maybe a pyramid scheme?

      • Cary
        Cary says:

        I’m not particualry bothered by the San Diego story. She never mentioned charging the company for anything untoward just things like food and air fare. Things they are meant to pay for if they invite someone to speak.

  5. Ari Herzog
    Ari Herzog says:

    I did a doubletake when you wrote you’re “on a farm and Ryan and Ryan is in Madison.”

    I suppose you intentionally left out a comma after the first Ryan, to force your readers like me to get dirty?

    I love your train of thought.

  6. pfj
    pfj says:

    Blogs are long form writing.

    If you REALLY believe that only short-form, Twitter-style writing will do … then why are you writing blog entries?

    Answer: obviously, because saying a lot of stuff takes a lot of words.

    Forget about “only short form.” It’s an interesting idea, but until mind-meld really works, it won’t do the job.

  7. A Campbell
    A Campbell says:

    P – I will love when you are proven right about HR. I just heard a ridiculous story about a company with an HR system which allowed a candidate to be interviewed by 3 different departments (who all loved her) without a hire because of the sign-offs and CV pooling and bureaucratic messiness that is their HR. Such a waste of time and resources.

    I agree with Jessica, though, that you aren’t sounding like your well-thought-out-and-clever-insight-delievering self. You sound panicky rather than fearless. Are you reacting to their judgements or is this the exit strategy?

  8. melanie gao
    melanie gao says:

    No one I know counts on HR to do recruiting for them. For the most part they’re well-intentioned but hopelessly unable to find serious candidates. Even when they’re just screening they can do serious damage by filtering out great resumes. The typical pattern is: applicant applies via website, HR filters out their resume, applicant gets ‘regrets’ email, same applicant contacts me through a mutual friend, I get their resume, we interview, we hire them.

    So I don’t think HR is going to become irrelevant when it comes to hiring. They already are.

  9. @TheGirlPie
    @TheGirlPie says:

    Eons late to the party the infamous Penelope Trunk’s been hosting, I have fallen hopelessly in Respect with this blog, this writer, her mission for her company, and her remarkable talent for (and skill at) all of it.

    There is sooo much to learn from just the dozen or so posts I’ve read here in the last 24 hours… dating back to a 4th break-up with The Farmer.

    “Truth in all its glorious mucus” is a fine and rare thing, offering uncut gems that we mine for ourselves. (One girl’s uncut gem is another girl’s booger, if Jessica is not teasing — I can’t tell.) Last time I felt such a useful blog-crush was upon meeting Naomi’s work back in 2/08… her is also a keen resource with a beating, occasionally bloody, sometimes skipping, heart.

    Having run my own firm for 13 years now, I find so much to learn from this post. So rich and creamy (like buttah!) it goes down smooth; only a story chef can make that look easy.

    /end mash note

    Rock on,

  10. NEA
    NEA says:

    Needlepointing…..well, yes it is relaxing and will keep your hands busy (so you don’t have to eat). I think the eating part is out of frustration, not boredom. The concept of becoming an amicable coworker, does not work, because you have to be YOU….and the rest need to accept your leadership(or as you call “passion”).
    I love your blogs.

  11. Polly noonan
    Polly noonan says:

    Hi Penelope,
    if you are going to be in new York this week (June1-5), I want to invite you to Sarah ruhl’s passion play, in ft greene, Brooklyn. I can arrange a for free ticket. Yes, FREE! No credit card needed. Do you like plays or dislike plays? I love your blog.
    Thanks, Polly Noonan

  12. Jess @OpenlyBalanced
    Jess @OpenlyBalanced says:

    I like that you say that those of us who still choose to use keyboards and write long form will be dorks. I am resistant to touchpads and thought that I was just (at 26) getting old and outdated. That bummed me out, but I am happy to embrace my inner dork, use a keyboard, and continue to write long form.

    Also, you should post a photo of your free-form needle point once it’s finished.

  13. A
    A says:


    This mash-post kind of sounds like you, but kind of not. Like in an “I’m off my meds” kind of not. I’m guessing the wedding (& aftermath) is freaking you out, as weddings (& the aftermath) tend to do. Needlepoint (cross-stitch in my neck of the woods) is a most excellent venting tool, surely, but no substitute for meds or whatever else you had in place before to deal with the situation(s).

    BTW, charging personal stuff on company cc’s = easy way to get the big ones ticked off. Next time, “oops, I forgot my card. Be back tomorrow.” Delayed gratification, baby. Sure, asking for forgiveness is easier than asking for permission – until you publicly admit it on your super-public blog.


    • Jess @OpenlyBalanced
      Jess @OpenlyBalanced says:

      Obviously I can only speak for myself, but generally speaking, other people’s crazy doesn’t bother me too much. Particularly when that “crazy” is based on just a small glimpse of the whole that a person chooses to share via their blog. It’s their life – who am I to judge them?

      • Gerald Boraks
        Gerald Boraks says:

        In my humble oponion,I have had more success at getting jobs when the hiring was left up to the dept that was needing people.Then hr was more ispired to accept the hiring.
        As for the death of faxeing, that will only happen when everyone has an internet connection so as to directly sign papers on the other website.
        Good luck to that…

  14. Cary
    Cary says:

    Your comments about the death of in house recruitment made me think about all the times I’ve been hired through recruitment firms. So I’m pretty sure your on to something there.

    I’m definitley behind the death of email. Any chance you could predict the death of voicemail and tell us how faxing will finally die.

  15. Alisa Bowman
    Alisa Bowman says:

    Maybe I understand the using the wrong credit card thing because we have two businesses and three different cards. Because I fear the IRS, I usually err on the side of using the personal card for business and then paying myself back, but I can totally see the reverse happening.

    Anyway, I was thinking about this line:

    They will say, "Have you been using it for anything weird?"

    Perhaps, you might answer, “You mean like a 12 inch battery operated boyfriend?”

    They would say, “um” or perhaps just silence.

    Then you say, “Oh, no I didn’t buy anything like that. I would only pay cash for something like that. This? Just garden supplies.”

    And since you wrote about the gardening supplies here, perhaps it is now justified a business expense. I’m not sure. Your accountant would know better.

    • Penelope Trunk
      Penelope Trunk says:

      IRS tidbit: I’ve been audited. And I have to say that the IRS was pretty nice. As long as you file every year, they are decent. If you make a mistake, and pay make up for what you owe, they are nice. They don’t care. You pay penalties, they get their money, everyone is decent.


  16. Margaret Goerig
    Margaret Goerig says:

    So THAT’S why my dad never taught me German. He’s a first gen immigrant.
    Glad to have you back. Here’s a few ways you might consider earning extra pocket change, so you don’t have to charge the company credit anymore:
    **Posing for a sketching class (it’s art, so it’s not sleazy; right?)
    **Selling your needlepoint works on Etsy (or Regretsy. Not sure where they fit.)
    **Selling your rose stems
    **Selling your laptop, as you won’t need it anymore
    **Needlepoint classes on video conference. (Assuming you don’t sell your laptop. And it’d be helpful if you had a Bluetooth headset, too.)

  17. Wooden U. Lykteneau
    Wooden U. Lykteneau says:

    This just in… As long as there are human beings acting as managers, there will ***ALWAYS*** be a need for HR. Thinking otherwise would be downright hilarious if it weren’t so patently ignorant. Managers do and say stupid things and it’s HR that saves them from themselves. Think attorneys will do this with the same skill and efficiency as an HR professional without a higher cost? Let’s put it this way, if you find such a beast, let us know. Because (s)he will be the first one.

    • A Campbell
      A Campbell says:

      This is EXACTLY why recruitment will no longer be handled by HR in the future. HR depts are too busy limiting liability and handling contractual administration to worry about (or have time for) hiring good people. Perhaps it will simply be that in the future no one is under the illusion that assigning recruitment to HR is an effective method of business organization.

  18. Mary Budge
    Mary Budge says:

    I agree with Tyler – why are you condoning the crazy? I mean come on, this is Penelope, this is why we all love to read her blog. It is always going to be thought provoking if not a little off center.

    All I can say is Penelope I wish you would get back to blogging more. I miss your regular posts.

  19. hsg
    hsg says:

    Penelope, I’ve been reading your blog for a long, long time now – but this is the first time I’ve ever commented.

    I just clicked through from RSS because I have to tell you that this post concerns me. Even at your wildest, your most eccentric, your most freeform, your most unconventional – your writing still makes sense. But what you’ve written today doesn’t make sense, and it doesn’t sound like you.

    I’ve become really familiar with your writing cadence, and this post is setting off all sorts of alarm bells. I’m no psychiatrist, but your post makes me wonder if you’re experiencing mania? I shouldn’t really hypothesise or diagnose… but please go see your doctor. You may not be the best judge of your own mental health at the moment.

    When I came here to comment I was not surprised to see that others people had already made similar suggestions. The difficulty is, of course, that a certain percentage of your audience tell you you’re crazy no matter what you post! But please don’t dismiss the comments this time. I really think there’s something not quite right with you today. Please see your doctor.

  20. Mark W.
    Mark W. says:

    Most everything changes at varying degrees and rates. We have control over some of it but it is always important to know what we have control over and what we don’t. Needlepoint or other art including writing (professional or recreational) allows us to assume control and do it on our own terms (without rigidity).
    HR, texting, or any other of the various workplace trends that you write about can’t be controlled but they can be monitored and watched for trends. I think it always comes down to trends because you have to know both the start and end points to make some sense of the general direction and possibilities.
    I think these statements from this post form your current concerns – “I like big ideas, I like hypothesizing and predicting and synthesizing. The job of actually getting stuff done is not that interesting to me. But we are in execution mode at the company, and I need to stay focused.” You’ve identified a dilemma at BC which is an important first step. I’m hoping you’ll find your focus at BC regardless of its mode. I know the community over at BC likes your big ideas and advice.
    So back to changes and trends. Things can get complicated when changes happen and we lose all the control of something that we previously enjoyed. I’m thinking specifically writing vs. webinars. Penelope, your true and accomplished voice at this time is writing. One of a few trends for you to master may be webinars but it will require work and focus. I think you can do it because you are capable of adapting to varying conditions and are flexible. I’m looking forward to your webinars and other doings for BC in the future.

  21. SharonG
    SharonG says:

    It was great to read you are addicted to needlepoint. I have that same problem. I became so addicted that it turned into a business for me. Yes, it is relaxing. Next time you are in NYC, stop off at Annie’s or Rita’s for a fix and tell them SharonG said hello.

  22. Gretchen
    Gretchen says:

    I love that you posted about using needlepoint to keep calm and focused. I use knitting like that all the time, sneAking it in on long boring conference calls. I like knitting better than needlepoint because if you do it long enough you can do it without looking and then you can sneak it in to long boring meetings and knit under the table. Or when your mother in law is talking at you.

    There is much discussion of knitting in places where you are supposed to be PAYING ATTENTION so it’s nice to hear that needlework keeps you focused.

  23. Carolyn C.
    Carolyn C. says:

    This longtime reader has very much enjoyed this post. I like the spirit of breaking rules and nonconformity here. Sometimes it pisses clients off, sometimes it concerns blog readers, and sometimes it’s how people build cool companies. Yay for roses and needlepoint!

  24. Bourbon
    Bourbon says:

    I think you were struggling in this post. I agree that there are certain things that HR is not needed for but if you look to major companies that are interested in the bottom line – they have a strong HR department. I really don’t think your needle point conversation has anything to do with career advice or career guidance. Maybe write up these points in a separate blog. Maybe you need to devote some time to the farmer and kids so that when you come back refreshed you won’t be writing blogs that lack credibility and thought.

  25. Brad
    Brad says:

    To those who think PT has gone wacko – are you new here? This post barely moves the needle on her crazy meter.

    • JR
      JR says:

      Oh I don’t know. You have to be pretty scatter-brained to misplace a personal credit card. And most people would immediately call to cancel a card once it’s discovered missing. With Penelope, it’s no more serious than misplacing her kid’s left shoe.

  26. Amanda
    Amanda says:

    How can the future be all short-hard written things AND bloggers rule the future? Blogs are certainly not shorthand. And bloggers must be the dorks, becuase they’ll need those full-size keyboards. I don’t understand how you can prophesize both of these futures in the same post without addressing their contradiction. That is, unless blogging and Twitter-like correspondence live in totally unrelated and separate worlds? If they don’t, then I’d like to hear some musing on their co-existence in the future.

  27. Thomas
    Thomas says:


    I liked this post–it’s about the realities of being an entrepreneur. Writing helps us process things so well, thats why I started my blog.

    Just graduated from college, still looking for a job. I joined your website a while back.

    I’m going to Seth Godin’s Boston conference on the 17th. Looking forward to that.

    Stay well.

  28. poppygirl
    poppygirl says:

    The needlepoint is kind of ugly, and you are using your coroprate card to buy garden supplies. Where i’m from that’s a step up (or down) from embezzlement.

    AND you saw your mom.

    Might be time to up your dosage, things don’t sound too good.

    HR’s been dead for years, thanks for catching up.

  29. lisa
    lisa says:

    Penelope – i appreciate your raw honesty and bravery.

    Be yourself. You’ll receive critiques and support, but do what works for you. Trust your gut instinct.

    People out there need to get over the fact that humans are NOT perfect, rational beings who can constantly conform to society’s expectations.

    Take good care and good luck resolving the credit card situation with your bosses.

  30. Allison
    Allison says:

    Your point that HR may not be the primary vehicle for recruitment in the years to come is well taken – though I agree with many of your readers that this is already the case. It’s impossible for someone in HR who doesn’t live and breathe the specifics of the job they are recruiting for to find the “perfect person” for it – particularly when the definition of the “perfect person” will vary significantly depending upon who the hiring manager is.

    That aside – there’s no way HR is going away – unless you are also suggesting that we are removing all the “H”s from the workplace. HR is a lot more than recruiting. Without HR, how do you suggest people (particularly in large companies) will be trained? promoted? paid? protected? informed? onboarded? Etc etc? It’s a lovely thought to think that line managers will do all this… but let’s be honest… most line managers aren’t going to start taking 20 hours of their week to pick up all the various functions that HR fulfills – and nor should they given that most don’t have the skills to do it.

    So while I may agree that investing in a career in recruiting isn’t a wise choice… I couldn’t disagree more with your statement that investing in a career in other HR areas is dangerous.

    • KateNonymous
      KateNonymous says:

      This is true if you have a good HR department. We do where I work now, but I’ve never seen a useful HR department in my prior private sector jobs. It’s funny that the most useful HR department I’ve encountered is in the public sector. They’ve been great.

  31. Rebecca Gonzalez
    Rebecca Gonzalez says:

    The main thing I got out of the post was negative comments on conf calls. That is actually my goal for June. It never occurred to me that the con calls are driving me crazy and I do I do it for sheer entertainment. But none-the-less it is a good goal. In the corporate envrionment, it would look a little weird if I brought in needlepoint so I need to work on a P.C. alternative.

  32. Kathleen
    Kathleen says:

    Howdy, PT. Speaking as a needlepoint addict myself, I can appreciate how it helps you quiet your mind so you can actually be present and focus on the call at hand. Me, too! BUT – I have not reconciled that truth with the feedback I’ve received from family and friends – that me sitting there doing needlepoint makes them feel as though I’m not fully there with them. Little do they know that if I weren’t doing needlepoint I’d be even LESS present with them because I’d be so distracted by the chaos in my mind. I have not yet reconciled the two perspectives.

    BTW, I have a favorite needlepoint shop in almost every city. Call if you ever need a recommendations.

    Cheerios, Kathleen

    • Penelope Trunk
      Penelope Trunk says:

      I have that problem, too — that people think I am not with them if I am needlepointing. It has been interesting to discover which people have said they don’t mind the needlepointing and which are offended if I do it while I’m with them. And, Kathleen, you and I have spent so much time together — think of all the needlepointing we could have gotten done!


      • Maureen Sharib
        Maureen Sharib says:

        The bigger theme here Penelope, and correct me if I’m wrong…seems to be about working offsite. At least that’s what I’m picking up – they can’t see you working – they don’t know what you’re doing – they’re maybe feeling out of control. There’s a reason partner desks were designed so one could look across and see the other (working). I don’t agree with those here that say you’re the one out of control – I think you feel like the world’s your oyster and you’re comfortable sitting like a pearl in it. The problem is you’re missing the fact that you’re upsetting the status quo. That’s what’s making them crazy – A WOMAN IN CHARGE – A WOMAN IN CONTROL.

        By the way, that person who said you don’t want to be there anymore: think about it.

  33. KateNonymous
    KateNonymous says:

    I do think that the recent rambling nature of your posts suggests that something’s up. I’m not sure that something is “crazy,” but you certainly have made a lot of big changes in the last year. Maybe it’s time to pause and take stock, and look at where you are now? It sounds like you could use a break.

    As for the credit card, you’re lucky you don’t work for my last company. I never had any trouble with how I used my card, but our department assistant told me once that someone went on a trip and her luggage got lost. She had a big meeting the first day and her luggage hadn’t arrived, so she had nothing to wear to the meeting. She used the company credit card, which was the only one she had on her, to charge a dress or jacket or something so that she would be appropriately dressed.

    And they fired her for misuse of the card.

    Could be apocryphal. Could be exaggerated. But there’s probably something in there that’s true, and that something is probably misuse of the card.

    • Maureen Sharib
      Maureen Sharib says:

      Sounds like maybe a clause in employment contracts that covers (spells out) use (and misuse) of company funds (including credit cards, when issued) would be appropriate. That story your dept asst told you Kate happened to me too – only I’m self-employed and my husband is my partner. He had a fiscal hissy fit too. Makes one think twice about traveling for business.

      • KateNonymous
        KateNonymous says:

        Possibly there was one–it’s been a while, and I don’t remember. Plus I hardly ever used my company card, so I didn’t run into any problems.

        But since people may be using a card long after the initial contract is signed, it would be smart to check with someone who knows before using it.

  34. matt murray
    matt murray says:

    good god.

    it’s like reading tori spelling goes to hell. i would shit in a can if you were needle pointing in my conference call. PITA is an understatement.

    i’ve been subscribing for awhile hoping to get something useful. your “laptop diatribe” reminds me of the spaghetti slurry on my 4 year old. a thumb swipe and a passing sense of oregano. the best was the abortion article, which blew me away. this is only sad. like chris farley falling on another table.

    your out of money not b/c of the roses but because brazen careerist is out of money.

    it would have been awesome to see you blog about careers and significance rather than your side show masquerading as HR is dead.

    count us a couple of thousand less fans.


  35. Linda
    Linda says:

    I recall arriving in Johannesburg ready for a couple of days of retail therapy after spending a pretty full on week doing work in Nairobi on my way home when my credit card was refused at the hotel. I had forgotten to pay the ridiculously small balance. I hadn’t brought my other cards because I had been in such a rush to get to Nairobi. All of a sudden I felt reduced, panicked and furious. Mostly with myself. In the end, it all worked out. After reading your post, I thought that the reason that these things happen is that we are out of balance. We struggle to get the kids up and fed, get to work, deal with people there, fight with our partners about nothing, so that things which should be really easy like remembering your credit cards become complicated and then everything gets complicated. This is not a matter of smarts, it is a matter of becoming overwhelmed. I missed you when you were gone and am glad you are back. By the way, I like cross stitch too – however,I am conventional enough to like to follow the patterns. Cheers.

  36. Nowgirl
    Nowgirl says:

    P –

    Don’t make them fire you. You don’t want to be there any more. Quit. The next thing will happen. You have your own platform. Make the break.


    • Sonjia
      Sonjia says:

      definitely lack of boundaries, taking things for granted, not really caring…could be a case of sabotage…take time to explore what’s really going on…then act!

  37. Tina Portis
    Tina Portis says:

    I read this post as I was in World Market and my son was counting the number of pictures on the wall. I vaguely remember him reaching 200 when I began to become so engrossed with your life that I barely noticed I was in the store. Sounds like you’ve hit the brick in the wall of reality. Simply put, I think you’re brilliant.

  38. Linda B
    Linda B says:

    I envy you your fearlessness! I’ll admit this post is a little farther out there than some of your past ones, but I’m really not sure what some of the folks above are so concerned about. You sound perfectly sane to me. So you goofed on the credit card thing. Meh. By tomorrow it will probably all be worked out.

    I also envy you your ability to needlepoint everywhere. My projects require a big frame that I can’t really be lugging around everywhere. I *will* try it for staving off my bad nighttime eating habits though…thanks for the idea!

  39. Liza
    Liza says:

    Odd post. While I think Twitter is very popular now, it won’t advance into the business world. Look at Facebook begin to decline in popularity and trust from its consumers.

    Businesses need to use actual sentences that everyone will understand in order to conduct business. International business will become more popular with lines separating countries being dissolved. Your ideas just don’t add up to how business is done around the world.

    Blogs are great for promoting and advertising, but TV is still more popular.

    Great ideas, not a lot of concrete information to prove that what you think will actually happen (and I do agree with most other comments that you sound a little crazy in this post).

  40. jrandom42
    jrandom42 says:

    Is it my imagination, or is Penelope just begging for an IRS audit of the way she’s been using company accounts for personal business?

  41. L.Hernandez
    L.Hernandez says:

    Shorter form: poor impulse control symptomatic of entrepreneurs and ADD. Farmer has nothing but free time so he can save me from all my problems, I’m misusing the word commodity as its antonym

      • Chris M.
        Chris M. says:

        Me three! “Commodity” use here is wrong, wrong, wrong.

        Penelope, I love you as a blogger, wish you the best, and have to agree with other comments who think it’s time for you to go do something else (writing and inventing the future?).

        Execution is definitely not your strong point, and clearly this is what Brazen Careerist needs now. I think it will be both in their and your best interest if you leave your current executive role. Become a blogger who sends traffic to the company, but doesn’t actually have to be in any conference calls that bore you!

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