On Guilty Pleasures

January 26, 2007

Everyone has guilty pleasures.

Whether it’s an extra scoop of chocolate ice cream, or checking out the page three girls, we all have certain things we do.

On Fridays, I’ll admit to two.

First comes gratis with my morning paper, the weekly Fry’s Electronics ad. Even though I 1. don’t need anything, 2. can’t afford anything, 3. hate dealing with Fry’s employees, I still can’t wait to look through and see all the things I don’t need, can’t afford, and probably couldn’t find in the store.

Second costs something.

Every Friday, a newsletter called “Client Server News” shows up in my email. Maureen O’Gara has been leading and writing this for a while now, and it easily is the the one thing to read if you really want to know what happened, and what’s going to happen, delivered with style and humor.

In my press training classes, oh so long ago, O’Gara was the example used to describe a true investigative reporter, one you would only feel comfortable talking to if you were on the top of your game. I’ve seen CxOs blanch when told she was on the list, and I’ve heard CFOs thank a diety or two that she wasn’t a financial analysis.

O’Gara has a writing style all of her own. Somehow she manages to make it all fascinating. Not many people could work the “Peace of Westphalia” (the ending act of the Thirty Years War) into a discussion on the Sun-Intel accord.

I got hooked on the insight and obvious straight up information through a newsletter called “LinuxGram”. She didn’t pull punches, and the interesting effect that I usually knew what was happening (and the back story) days before my bosses gave me great creditability in my job.

At my last start up, I insisted that we get a subscription to CSN. The CEO is now equally hooked, and refers to it during executive staff meetings, which means everyone else needs to read it as well.

Anyway, give it a look. Even when it doesn’t pertain to my job (or yours), it’s still something I read every week (and you should too).

And yes, I will have another scoop of that cherry chocolate chunk ice cream.

As always, comments welcome.