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Many great venues make the mistake of resting on their laurels.

I won’t name names but we all know some that the limelight has set on — the popular venues that have had their day and died out.

When service gets sloppy and dress codes relax, chipped corners and stained tables lose their reminiscent charm and instead turn into an ugly reminder of an impending fit-out, necessary to reinvigorate the space (visually, at least).

Ill-motivated or poorly-qualified operators become hinges on which this turn takes place. They starve the cash cow and milk it dry.

The public wonders why — what happened to the business. …


Our finite arsenal of words attempts to convey a sensory experience, unique to the individual.

This collision of two abstract worlds magnifies communication error.

Despite the flexibility of language, it’s not robust enough to adapt to this personal and intimate envelopment of the senses.

Language is beautifully metamorphic and powerfully applicable but still bounded.

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There are an incredible number of factors involved to effectively communicate flavour: idea conception, protocol knowledge (each party’s understanding of the chosen communication language), breadth and depth of flavour experience (and recall of such) and synthesis of protocol and recall to correctly articulate what the participant wants to — the choice of language matters. …


The hospitality environment we live in is diverging.

There are those who appreciate the in-person nature of our craft and those who would rather get their meal delivered to their couch. The shortest path to sustenance is cutting out the art of our industry and distilling it into a pure science, where robots serve for the purpose of meal delivery and patrons sit, undisturbed, on social media.

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May we consider that technology, in all it’s magnificence, is in itself a tool — a powerful tool of humanity that must be harnessed appropriately — carefully applied.

I’m not suggesting we fear technology’s impact and ability to disrupt, but rather that we steer it in a direction that we’d like — a direction that proliferates more important ideas than those possessed by simple minds. …


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The difference between curiosity and ignorance is the choice to explore.

Do you see an unfamiliar object and reject it or embrace it?

What if the entity scares you — and what if it’s intangible?

What if it’s a complex idea that you don’t fully understand?

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‘Balance #8’ by Jeremy Blake

If we’re presented with something unfamiliar, it’s disturbing — it’s confronting and confusing.

The unknown has forever killed us, or propelled us into greatness (with the full spectrum in between) — the fear of the unknown, hinging discovery. …


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Through a combined medium that speaks to an inner ear and deeper layer of existence, I want to convey meaning that surpasses language itself — ideas, concepts and symbols of the highest-order.

This undertaking attempts to communicate core components of life, as we understand it to be, and utilises every tool in our current arsenal.

As you read this, please don’t take my words literally — that is indeed why I’m putting the colloquial pen to paper (ironically so — for, potentially, a futile attempt to inspire greater thought)

There’s been an evolution occurring, to convey reality — and ultimately, to control it. …


We’re pushed to chase.

What happens when we ‘close’? What happens when we achieve the goal? What happens next?

The greyhound that catches the rabbit has no idea what to do with it.

The culture of now, of on-demand and hedonistic addiction plagues us.

No one, group or individual, can be blamed though, it’s just the shortest path between two points — the least energy required to achieve a task.

As a result, we become ‘task achievers’ — incredible ones because our culture rewards us for being so. It rewards us for being myopic. …


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As thoughts tend to drift on the long drive home, they inevitably shift to postulations on the human condition.

This time, starting from systems theory, they morphed into the human desire for escapism and (what I’ve come see as our) ‘requirement’ to leave a legacy.

I’ll signpost a couple of points that I came to and would love to elaborate on them further in a future piece — you may choose to skip these for the content of this article:

  1. Only the system itself can establish an emergent property of the system — it dictates where growth directs itself — it guides it. …

The black mirror illuminates with my wallpaper of choice and like the electronic nodes, my brain fires up with a dopamine rush.

Alongside the time, there’s an exciting new taste of digital intimacy — an oxymoron at best. And I say ‘taste’, but the word is really too strong — it’s a subliminal tease, emergent as social disorder. Like window-shopping, you may wet your lips but never be sated.

Reminders of Internet friendships inflate feeds and notifications and our expectations recalibrate to a new baseline.

This addiction to constant stimulus and consumption on demand, makes a larger statement on the regression of society to that of a small child. How often do we feel hurt by a lack of popularity of our content? We’ve become so entrenched in this new norm, that we are disappointed with the absence of digital activity. …


‘The world is just as lonely among men’

The words ring on, long after reading The Little Prince, when our small friend spoke with a wise (and mildly ominous) snake, trekking across the vast emptiness of the planet.

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‘Road of Blues’ by Robert Motherwell. America, 1939

More crudely (but appropriately) put by Good Charlotte, that at the end of life you’re, ‘old, cold, covered in blood, right back to where you started from’.

We are truly alone.

No matter how much we want to believe otherwise.

Your partner is here temporarily, just like you. …


A man who taught me of right and wrong (he was a Legal Studies teacher) – my English teacher, back when I was learning the ropes, would speak of an idea of wearing our thoughts and opinions, our ideas, as a badge – to display to the world, who we are – an almost-frictionless method of conveying ideas.

This social transparency requires a deep honesty and confidence in ourselves. To wear a badge of our most personal thoughts would restructure us. It would revolutionise us.

Changing intent and purpose within conversation, we’d eliminate a great deal of meaningless drivel. …

About

James Henderson

Behavioural Economist, Host of The Hospopreneurs Podcast and Accidental Festival Owner

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