Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thought for food

With our national day of thanks here once again, it's a good time to take note of things of note.

Like "The 10 Most Tweeted Moments of all Time." I won't give away the most tweeted event in human history, but No. 3 was the indelible moment when the Brazilian national soccer team was eliminated from Copa America. Who could forget?

What I want to know, though, is the moment in this twitter time when the pound sign (#) became the hashtag (#). Could someone tweet me the answer during Thanksgiving dinner? Thanks.

Or, consider the musings of Daniel Kahneman in last week's Time Magazine. Kahneman, as we all know, won the 2002 Nobel prize for economics for his "prospect theory" in behavioral economics.

Anyway, he was asked about experts and if we should trust their instincts. 

Kahneman said: "There are domains in which expertise is not possible. Stock picking is a good example."

I think believers in Warren Buffett and a few other stock pickers would dispute that notion.

Kahneman also offered his thoughts on happiness: "When you analyze happiness, it turns out that the way you spend your time is extremely important. Decisions that affect how much time you spend with people you like are going to have a very large effect on how happy you are  -- not necessarily satisfied with your life -- but happy."

That's good to know when breaking bread with in-laws on Thanksgiving.

It also helps to show a bit of gratitude. A New York Times story reports that "Cultivating an 'attitude of gratitude' has been linked to better health, sounder sleep, less anxiety and depression, higher long-term satisfaction with life and kinder behavior toward others, including romantic partners."

Then, naturally, we get another story that says "two studies out this week indicate that negative comments can have health benefits."

So when a considerate sibling turns to you while passing the candied yams and helpfully suggests that "you get a life!" you should show some gratitude and say thank you.

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