A beautiful word: saudade.

Posted on October 30th, 2014

I think the most beautiful words are those with no English equivalent. Perhaps it’s the fact we have to conjure them without familiarity that makes them more alluring. More creative. More ephemeral.

IMAHR Saudade (1899), by Almeida Júnior

Saudade (1899), by Almeida Júnior

For me, though, it’s the fact that these words generally point to a moment so potent yet subtle that no single English word can possibly sum it up. It’s the potency and subtlety, of course, that I find beautiful.

Hygge is one word. It’s the art of creating intimacy. So it’s an act as well as a feel – a verb and an adjective. Hygge is also something you consciously strive for…it’s about connecting in a cosy, elegant, unfussy way. It’s about weaving friendship and intimacy with ease.

Mamihlapinatapai (from the language of the people of Tierra del Fuego) is another. It points to a look shared between two Read more

How you should drink your coffee (and it’s not about butter!)

Posted on October 29th, 2014

I drink coffee. I love the stuff. But I have to say I’ve been wondering how mindful I’ve been about it lately. I decided to dig around a bit and get informed. I’ve adjusted my habit accordingly. Feel free to do so too because every little bit of care counts.

We have more than one kilo of undigested plastic in our systems from ingesting our foods via bourgeois accoutrements...

We have more than one kilo of undigested plastic in our systems from ingesting our foods via bourgeois accoutrements…

1. Piff the coffee pods

These things – despite George Clooney’s mug being attached to them – are ghastly suckers. Thanks to George’s thumb’s up (in part) billions of coffee pods are ending up in landfill each year. Last year, Choice reported Nespresso alone had sold 28 billion such pods worldwide – about 28 million kilograms of aluminium. Sure, they’re recycle. But in practice they rarely are, particularly the plastic ones, which are the more common, cheaper version. Plus this: hot water passing through the pod essentially “cooks” the plastic and the substances in the pod’s lining is leaked into your coffee. This may or may not bother you.

2. Give up your takeaway cup habit…the lids are poisoning you

Disposable cups are a travesty. When the hot liquid passes through the plastic lid as you drink your coffee, it has been shown BPA is drawn out of the plastic by the acidity levels and the heat. BPA is a known thyroid/endocrine disruptor, a tedious Read more

Fire up, then lighten up.

Posted on October 28th, 2014

My wonderful assistant Jo sent this to me over the weekend. She sends me things like this when she thinks I need it. By the way, turns out Jo and I celebrate four years working together today. There you go.

IMG_7817

This is not about “finding your passion and giving everything to it”. It’s about giving everything to everything. “Finding your passion” suggests you might only have one or two. But all of life needs to be plunged into.

I guess I expand on the above by adding that once you’ve gone all the way, you can then release and lighten up. There’s no need for rigidity or force, just meaningful intent. Dive in deep, then float.

As I like to say, where the mind goes, the energy flows.

Do it like you mean it. Eat like you mean it. Love like you mean it.

Start everything like you mean it because this says to the Read more