Thursday, January 13, 2011

Defining "Think Sideways" by giving you two blog posts in one!

Blog 1: What is Thinking Sideways?

You may have noticed over the past weeks these posts have really been all over the place subject matter wise. That's fine with me. These really are supposed to be random musings. This is a sandbox for future cleaned up publications. But why did I use the name "Think Sideways"?

I have used the motto "Think Sideways" for many years. It means, when you approach an issue or a problem, look at it from a different perspective.

To think sideways is also known as lateral thinking, although I hate the term "thinking outside the box". Thinking sideways is the opposite of linear thinking and involves looking at conventional problems and conventional ideas in unconventional ways.

To think sideways means you needs to embrace alternative problem solving methods. Logic dictates that if you walk a straight line from point a to point b you will get there in X seconds. Thinking sideways allows you to look at the larger picture. For example, if you walk from point a, away from point b, you may find a bicycle resting against a tree that will get you to point b in X-20 seconds. Solutions are not always immediately obvious and may require additional observation and communication. Sometimes you need to combine two apparently different ideas to come up with a unique solution.

Thinking Sideways shouldn't be confused with "Thinking outside of the box". That's an overused term that has really lost all meaning these days. Thinking outside the box, in my opinion, really only means doing something that is outside of your comfort zone. Thinking Sideways, by comparison, involves an entirely fresh perspective on an issue.

That is what I mean by "Thinking Sideways"

Blog 2: Who are you and what are you hoping to achieve here?

I mentioned that in the last blog, this is a sandbox for me to work out some random musings. There will be a lot of recipes, but there will be some advice on podcasts, movie reviews, an occasional piece of fiction, maybe a script or two. The idea is that since this is a sand box, I can work out the kinks here, solicit feedback and the take my polished work and publish it later.

My job it to write it down and publish it here. Your job is to read it and critique it. I will try to write it daily, please read it daily and comment daily. If it's good, tell me so (THANKS RICHARD!!!) and if it isn't good, tell me so. That's the only way I can improve.

As for who I am, why don't you throw a few questions at me.

[TS] OK. What is your Idea of a fun evening?

[DL] That would be sitting around trying to imagine what Daft Punk would sound like if they sung Gilbert and Sullivan’s “I am the Very Model of a Modern Major General”

[TS] Uh huh. What is your greatest accomplishment?

[DL] Other than raising two amazing kids with my wife of almost 20 years? Memorizing the screenplay to the Blues Brothers.

[TS] What do you want to be when you grow up?

[DL] I don’t want to grow up. I hear it's overrated. I prefer to be tall for my age.

[TS] How tall are you?

[DL] 8'9" in most fun house mirrors. I get nose bleeds and can't ride the ponies.

[TS] Sounds tragic.

[DL] It has it's benefits. The grocery stores give me a 10% discount because I can change their light bulbs without a ladder. So I've got that going for me.

[TS] Any career aspirations?

[DL] I have far too many careers as it is! In addition to working for a Fortune 50 company telling people to reboot their PC's, I teach people how to reboot their PC's at the local community college, and I do freelance computer work on the side rebooting other people's PC's. Occasionally I cater weddings and parties and play with food. Then once in a while, like about every 24 hours, I put out a blog about the whole thing.

[TS] What was the last great meal you had out to eat?

[DL] In Blacksburg, VA, at Green's Grill, hands down. Some of the best food I’ve had in ages, great sushi - wonderful service and reasonable prices. I will definitely be posting a review very soon.

[TS] What about the last great drink you had out?

[DL] I don’t mean to sound like a hipster or a snob, but when the drinks are free and strong and good, you tend to like them. So I have a special place in my heart for the Mojitos at Mix at the top of THE hotel at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas. Mojito is not normally my drink of choice.

[TS] What is your drink of choice?

[DL] Good Russian vodka, room temperature, neat, three fingers, in a water glass. If you don’t know what that means, don’t attempt to serve it to me.

[TS] Why did you start blogging?

[DL] I thought it would be an easy way to pick up chicks, and then when they grew up we could use the eggs.

[TS] What do you hope to accomplish with “Think Sideways”?

[DL] I want people to make their chiropractors rich because they will all need adjustments from leaning their heads to far to one side.

[TS] Where do you think you’ll be in twenty years?

[DL] Outside of a Denny’s in Memphis, TN, wearing a pink tutu, bunny slippers, and a gorilla mask because I’d lost a bar bet the night before. Or it might be Tuscon, AZ, I’m not sure which yet.

[TS] What are you listening to right now?

[DL] The droning hum of 5 vending machines and 3 refrigerators (I forgot the headphones for my blackberry at home today).

[TS] What is your deepest darkest secret?

[DL] The cake... is a lie.

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Thanks for your indulgence today... I needed a little silliness. Things back here at the ranch got a little serious, and highly disappointing. To use a racing metaphor: the fastest car at the race didn't win tonight and tomorrow, we're going to go ask the officials "Why?"

Until tomorrow though, I wish you Peace, Love, and Hollandaise Sauce!

Photo Credit: Bike Leaning Against Tree, Dennis Flood

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