Feeling pretty good about yourself for knowing that one, right?

Here’s another one: On your mark. Get set. ____.

Two in a row. You’re on a roll.

Humpty Dumpty sat on a _______. Great job, three in a row.

For many of us, the last one wasn’t as fun as the first.

The first one felt great.

The second one felt easy.

The third on was a mix of too easy, too silly and, “What’s going on here?”

You are thinking right now, “What’s your point Pete?”, and, ironically, so am I.

I’m thinking ‘out loud’ as I write first about how and why we remember these ridiculous patterns, and second about why we felt good on the first one for knowing the answer without any context, and then third how we walk right into the trap of the second, and then finally...but weirdly not sooner...we start asking questions about why I’m musing about such nonsensical things.

I’m asking myself the same thing.

Right now I’m wondering why you’re still reading, and am tempted to stop right here for no good reason.

“And leave us all hanging?”

Hanging on to what exactly? Hanging on to find out why I started this in the beginning?

I don’t know why. I really don’t.

It is, however, making me think that this may be the same roller coaster of emotions that the new-style TV series put us through.

What is that roller coaster? What is the pattern of those emotions and is it possible to replicate them to create this “don’t leave me hanging” feeling.

I’m not a language or journalism professional but I bet they would know.

But before I go there, I have found a point to make that will wrap this whole thing up for the time being. This entry came out of my brain as a stream-of-consciousness thought about how challenging unstructured data is to understand.

It’s a revelation of how incredible the task is to create artificial intelligence.

The nuance of learning the millions of patterns that humans experience every second without really thinking means exposing learning machines to random entries like this one and to make some sense of them even when for some of you this is literally non-sense.

That closure feels good for me even if I don’t take the time to write out the pattern.

That said...

“Live! From Detroit it’s _________!”

Doesn’t work right?

How do we know that?

Winning is not everything. Speed is optional. Pregnancy is relatable.


I have to believe that a very large portion of runners today are not paying attention to podium finishers' footwear, but I'm not in that business. I could be wrong. But what kind of math does it take for Nike and Asics to treat pregnancies like injuries and reduce or suspend pay during that time?

If pro athletes are still willing to represent the brand in the press and on the sidelines, are they not just as valuable? In this age of celebrating vulnerability, I'm betting that Altra's gut is right. Runners are human. Runners take breaks. Runners are loyal to those who understand them. If a brand is willing to drop our running heroes that quickly, I wonder how they feel about us common people?

All the more reason to love my Altras.

Parenting is hard. Nearly everyone's a rookie. We read some stuff. We observe others. We go with newly-informed gut and hope for the best.

When it comes to handing out compliments they often sound like this, "You finished your homework super fast!", "I barely noticed you left and your back already!""Wow, you cleaned your room quickly."

In the workplace we find ourselves saying, "Great turn around on that, thanks." Day in and day out we are bombarded with rewards for speed. It's the compliment of choice. It's a measurable reality. It's also micro suggestion that speed matters more than other things.

As modern parents and employers we can't help ourselves--despite the chatter to the contrary--we reward children and employees for finishing tasks quickly even if the task was not about time. I suppose most of our parents did the same thing, and our respective bosses still do.

For better or worse and for the love of one-click next day delivery, we've come to expect speed as a given.

But what are we willing to give up if we must?

There's an old saying that suggests that there are three things that we can expect from a person doing a task for us: speed, affordability and quality, but that we can only pick two at a time.

If we want it fast and cheap, don't expect quality. If we want it cheap and high quality don't expect it to come quickly. If we want it fast and high quality it won't be cheap.

Is that saying now outdated or has the bar been lowered on cost and quality?

I'm going to take some time to think about that . . . because no one is really expecting an answer any time sooner . . . or ever, really.