3

THE 30/30/30 RULE

For every creative thing you do: 1/3 will love you, 1/3 will hate you, and 1/3 won’t care.

Fear creates anger, frustration, feelings of inadequacy and lack of accomplishment. Which manifests as self-anger. Which can be manifested as self-hatred. Which is difficult to own, so is taken out on others.

Altucher, J. (2014, March). The Ultimate Cheat Sheet for Dealing With Haters. Retrieved from http://www.jamesaltucher.com/2014/03/the-ultimate-cheat-sheet-for-dealing-with-haters/

💺

Sell it Back to Them

The business model of the air travel industry is to strip passengers of comfort and convenience, and then sell it back to them. You will find the comfort you seek at a price, at the airlines’ membership lounges.

Holbrook, C. (2016, April 6). Airports, Designed for Everyone but the Passenger. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/10/travel/airport-architecture.html?contentCollection=weekendreads&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=c-column-middle-span-region®ion=c-column-middle-span-region&WT.nav=c-column-middle-span-region&_r=0

Immense Hypocrisy

I practice part time in rural TN and can attest to this article. An entire generation of uneducated white people is self-destructing in an orgy of narcotics, alcohol, and illicit drugs. They are all politically conservative and never miss an opportunity to denigrate the federal government. The immense hypocrisy that most of them are on Medicare disability for their addictions and self-induced illnesses is completely beneath their awareness. They rail against immigrants who come to America to work in their place because they can’t be bothered by manual labor. The academicians can analyze this phenomenon and ascribe many societal factors, but at the end of the day, it comes down to personal responsibility and hard work. I have way more sympathy for inner city African-Americans who at least can complain of a legacy of discrimination.

FL Doc (2016, April 10 6:48 PM CDT). Re: A new divide in American death [Reader Comment]. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/national/2016/04/10/a-new-divide-in-american-death/

Stubborn Pride

These rural folks with their wrong-headed attitudes are indeed a sadness to behold; proud of their ignorance, shunning education, science, healthcare and clinging to a deadly stubborn pride.

809212876 (2016, April 10 2:03 PM CDT). Re: A new divide in American death [Reader Comment]. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/national/2016/04/10/a-new-divide-in-american-death/

🌅

Illusions Fell Through

Most of the folks this effects were generally low intelligence voters anyway, easily swayed by right-wing religion into believing that if they’d just support the godly Republicans in their fight against the evil gay loving abortion promoting godless heathen Democrats, and give all your money to Oral Roberts or Benny Hinn or Cephelo Dollar, that God would just take care of you. When all of those illusions fell through, and these folks were left rotting in poverty, they then had to resort to welfare, food stamps, Medicaid, and food banks…..all things they’ve despised as being the life of those worthless welfare black people of the inner city.

Reader Response (2016, April 10). Re: A new divide in American death [Reader Comment]. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/national/2016/04/10/a-new-divide-in-american-death/

📣

Authentic Voice

Your Authentic Voice is also someone the mammoth tends to ignore entirely. A strong opinion from a confident person in the outside world? The mammoth is all ears. But a passionate plea from your AV is largely dismissed until someone else validates it.

But in today’s large, complex world of varying cultures and personalities and opportunities and options, losing touch with your AV is dangerous. When you don’t know who you are, the only decision-making mechanism you’re left with is the crude and outdated needs and emotions of your mammoth. When it comes to the most personal questions, instead of digging deep into the foggy center of what you really believe in to find clarity, you’ll look to others for the answers. Who you are becomes some blend of the strongest opinions around you.

Losing touch with your AV also makes you fragile, because when your identity is built on the approval of others, being criticized or rejected by others really hurts. A bad break-up is painful for everyone, but it stings in a much deeper place for a mammoth-run person than for a person with a strong AV.

AVs lead. Mammoths follow.

Leadership is natural for most AVs, because they draw their thoughts and opinions from an original place, which gives them an original angle. And if they’re smart and innovative enough, they can change things in the world and invent things that disrupt the status quo. If you give someone a paintbrush and an empty canvas, they might not paint something good—but they’ll change the canvas in one way or another.
Mammoths, on the other hand, follow—by definition. That’s what they were built to do—blend in and follow the leader. The last thing a mammoth is going to do is change the status quo because it’s trying so hard to be the status quo. When you give someone a paintbrush and canvas, but the paint is the same exact color as the canvas, they can paint all they want, but they won’t change anything.

Urban, T. (2014, June 13). Taming the Mammoth: Why You Should Stop Caring What Other People Think. Retrieved from http://waitbutwhy.com/2014/06/taming-mammoth-let-peoples-opinions-run-life.html

🚄

The Teen Years

Anyone who knows 9 to 23-year-olds knows that they tend to detract more value from the world than they add, but as you can see on this graph, the teen years, and especially ages 12 to 16, are a full train wreck.

Urban, T. (2014, December 23). The Teen Years: 9 Cringe-Inducing Realizations. Retrieved from http://waitbutwhy.com/2014/12/the-teen-years-9-cringe-inducing-realizations.html

🌌

Unconscious Fog

On a day-to-day level, one of the greatest challenges facing most humans is the quest to avoid living in an unconscious fog—this fog is where you are when you make big life decisions for small-minded reasons, when you short-sightedly side-step your own integrity, when you continually prioritize the wrong things over the right things, settle for mediocrity out of fear, or waste huge amounts of your precious time procrastinating.

Urban, T. (2014, October 10). How Religion Got in the Way. Retrieved from http://waitbutwhy.com/2014/10/how-religion-got-in-the-way.html

Smallest Bit Upwards

There are no hard problems, only problems that are hard to a certain level of intelligence. Move the smallest bit upwards [in level of intelligence], and some problems will suddenly move from “impossible” to “obvious.” Move a substantial degree upwards, and all of them will become obvious.

Quote from Eliezer S. Yudkowsky appearing in Chapter Two. Kurzweil, R. (2005). The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology (1st ed.). The Viking Press.

Inflated View

Paul Harvey, a University of New Hampshire professor and GYPSY expert, has researched this, finding that Gen Y has “unrealistic expectations and a strong resistance toward accepting negative feedback,” and “an inflated view of oneself.”  He says that “a great source of frustration for people with a strong sense of entitlement is unmet expectations. They often feel entitled to a level of respect and rewards that aren’t in line with their actual ability and effort levels, and so they might not get the level of respect and rewards they are expecting.”

Urban, T. (2013, September 9). Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy. Retrieved from http://waitbutwhy.com/2013/09/why-generation-y-yuppies-are-unhappy.html

🍹

Biggest Dick

You’re then asked for your ID by someone who may not have been the biggest dick in your high school—but he was the biggest dick in someone’s high school.

Urban, T. (2014, May 27). Why You Secretly Hate Cool Bars. Retrieved from http://waitbutwhy.com/2014/05/secretly-hate-bars.html

💬

No Middle Finger Button

Our friend Daniel’s post was quite a feat—in one simple paragraph, he sliced through my soul, accomplishing nearly every terrible status type and motivation discussed above.  The thing is, though, that if you looked right below his post, all you saw were likes and a couple friendly comments.

And that’s why insufferable Facebook behavior will never go away—there’s no dislike button or eye-roll button or middle finger button on Facebook, and it’s bad form to be too much of a dick in the comments below a status. So annoying statuses are just positively reinforced, and people remain un-self-aware that they regularly bring down the quality of everyone else’s life.

Urban, T. (2013, July 8). 7 Ways to Be Insufferable on Facebook. Retrieved from http://waitbutwhy.com/2013/07/7-ways-to-be-insufferable-on-facebook.html

housefly

Popularity

You think a piece of shit feels popular because it’s surrounded by flies?

Max Payne. Dir. Sam Lake. Remedy Entertainment, 2001. Video Game.

2

torn-map

Timeless Poverty

After scouting locations with Walon Green and John Box, the production designer, they chose La Altagracia village as the main location. Friedkin described the place as “a prison without walls” with a “sense of timeless poverty and persecution.”

Sorcerer (film). (2017, June 19). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 20:31, June 19, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Sorcerer_(film)&oldid=786489978

leaf-book

Unburdened

young (adj.): Unburdened by the knowledge that it would be better to never have been born.

Sottek, T. (2015, April 5). The New Devil’s Dictionary. Retrieved from https://www.theverge.com/a/new-devils-dictionary

small-television-retro

Ideally Psychotic

Reality TV is about placing dumb and ideally psychotic but physically attractive people in ridiculous, contrived situations and feeding them alcohol and scripted lines until they fight or sleep with each other with commercials in between for energy drinks, diet pills and tanning products featuring people from other reality shows. It’s a glorious feedback loop in which entertainment becomes even more mean-spirited and shit. Yes, I hear you say, but isn’t that a bad thing? Well, not if you’re making money out of it, hand over fist. Production companies love reality TV because it’s cheap. A few shirtless douchebags, a fresh batch of yeast-infected sluts, a few bottles of bottom shelf liquor and you’ve got yourself a show.

From Grand Theft Auto V in-game parody website: www.therealitymill.com/about

🔃

Disappointed

Repeat until disappointed in mankind.

Rio, C. (2016, June 1). 6 Bands Who Followed Up Their One Hit With Drooling Insanity. Retrieved from http://www.cracked.com/blog/mmmbop-to-aliens-insane-songs-albums-one-hit-wonders/

3D-factory

Nail Cutters

Marx might have called this kind of work “estranged labor,” but the phrase isn’t quite right. My experience working in fine dining was marked by hard, repetitive and often meaningless work. But it wasn’t completely “estranging,” not at first. To the contrary, I found that hard, repetitive work, however “estranged” in some abstract or theoretical sense, could be incredibly affirming. Executing the same tasks with machine-like precision over and over and over again, like one of Adam Smith’s nail-cutters, offered a special kind of enjoyment. There was no reflection, no question about what my job required of me, and I could indulge, for hours, in the straightforward immediacy of action.

Frame, E. (2015, August 22). Dinner and Deception. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/23/opinion/sunday/dinner-and-deception.html?ref=opinion&_r=0

book-stack

Of What Use Would I Be?

At the time of the story, the region was largely agrarian and peasant, and many were skilled craftsmen, artisans, and laborers. I thought, ‘I’m also an intellectual. Of what use would I be in the forest?’ The film works in a way as a cautionary tale. Most of us live in a precarious balance above the bedrock of physical labor.

Ebert, R. (2009, January 14). Review: Defiance (2009). Retrieved from http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/defiance-2009

police-cruiser-retro

Motel Shootout

The class clown, the guy that gets up and sets the clock ahead twenty minutes, that guy always dies in a motel shootout.

The Howard Stern Show. (2015, February 25). Sirius XM Radio.

file-cabinet-with-files

Lawsuit Avoidance

The videos seem well-made and valid, and I wish we did far more unpacking of bias in our lives. Perhaps I am being uncharitable, but this (at least in a vacuum) feels more like corporate lawsuit-avoidance than it does a meaningful set of resources. I’d personally think that a proper treatment of biases in decision-making would be a little broader than this list, if only because it feels like “these are some lawsuits we keep getting hit with because we could be doing better in this space.”

(2015, July 28). Managing Unconscious Bias. Comment posted at 9:44 AM by Phyltre. Retrieved from http://www.metafilter.com/151616/Managing-Unconscious-Bias

🎥

Rails of Celluloid Cocaine

Sex was okay—so was an R rating. Adults were treated as adults rather than as overgrown children hell-bent on enshrining their own arrested development.

Then came Top Gun. The man calling the shots may have been Tony Scott, but the film’s real auteurs were producers Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer, two men who pioneered the “high-concept” blockbuster—films for which the trailer or even the tagline told the story instantly. At their most basic, their movies weren’t movies; they were pure product—stitched-together amalgams of amphetamine action beats, star casting, music videos, and a diamond-hard laminate of technological adrenaline all designed to distract you from their lack of internal coherence, narrative credibility, or recognizable human qualities. They were rails of celluloid cocaine with only one goal: the transient heightening of sensation.

Harris, M. (2011, February 10). The Day the Movies Died. Retrieved from http://www.gq.com/story/the-day-the-movies-died-mark-harris

🍝

One Way to Feel Special

The narcissism of minor differences finds expression in the food-intolerance explosion: Having a special dietary requirement is one way to feel special in the prevailing “me” culture. But I don’t want to show the intolerance of the omnivore for faddish food particularism, however overblown it may be. There’s a lot that’s good in food fetishes.

Cohen, R. (2015, October 19). This Column Is Gluten-Free. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/20/opinion/this-column-is-gluten-free.html?action=click&contentCollection=Books&module=MostPopularFB&version=Full®ion=Marginalia&src=me&pgtype=article&_r=0

🚥

Blur of Traffic Passing On the Highway

sonder, n. the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own—populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness—an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.

Johnny Wallflower (2016, April 3). Re: Haters gonna hate, baby. Retrieved from http://www.metafilter.com/158345/Haters-gonna-hate-baby#6468195

👺

Lazy Excuse

The term “hater” is just a lazy excuse to avoid having to address any criticism. It ends up hurting yourself, too, because if you refuse to engage with any criticism you’re never going to get any better.

Sangermaine (2016, April 3). Re: Haters gonna hate, baby. Retrieved from http://www.metafilter.com/158345/Haters-gonna-hate-baby#6468083

👋

I am right and have always been right because I’m a member of a victimized sex/race, and therefore hold no responsibility for my actions.

Amazom.com customer (2001, January 18). Re: The way forward is with a broken heart (1st ed.). Random House. Retrieved from https://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-reviews/R2STFIIZ9IP5IA/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_viewpnt?ie=UTF8&ASIN=0345407954#R2STFIIZ9IP5IA

🐺

Hear it Panting

The wolf isn’t at the door, but you can hear it panting out there in the woods.

Garner, D. (2016, April 5). ‘Disrupted,’ a Tech Takedown by Dan Lyons, a.k.a. Fake Steve Jobs. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/06/books/review-disrupted-dan-lyons-fake-steve-jobs.html?action=click&contentCollection=Book%20Review&module=RelatedCoverage®ion=EndOfArticle&pgtype=article%3E

🔫 🔫

Permanent War

The movie offers no answers to the problems it presents—rampant street crime in poor neighborhoods; a gun-worshiping American culture tied to capitalist rapaciousness that’s hooked into the country’s culture of Permanent War; the lure of machismo, which makes violent confrontation seem “sexier” than negotiation and de-escalation.

Seitz, M. Z. (2015, December 2). Review: Chi-Raq (2015). Retrieved from http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/chi-raq-2015

📑

Impeccable Mediocrity

Into his classroom every autumn come several dozen would-be Harvard law graduates, who fall into the categories we all remember from school: (a) the drones, who get everything right but will go forth to lead lives of impeccable mediocrity; (b) the truly intelligent, who will pass or fail entirely on the basis of whether they’re able to put up with the crap; (c) those with photographic memories, who can remember everything but connect nothing; (d) the students whose dogged earnestness will somehow pull them through; and (e) the doomed.

Ebert, R. (1973, October 16). Review: The Paper Chase (1973). Retrieved from http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/the-paper-chase-1973

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👠

 Too much temptation. Too Little wisdom.

LIKE classic French cooking, the best American crime fiction relies on a limited number of simple ingredients (which may be why it’s so popular in France). Too much temptation. Too little wisdom. Too many weak, bad men. Too few strong, good ones. And spread over everything, freedom. Freedom and space. The freedom (perhaps illusory) to make poor choices and the space (as real as the highways) to flee their consequences — temporarily, at least. Corny and crude in the way of all great folk art, the intrinsically pessimistic crime novel — as opposed to the basically optimistic detective novel — is not about the workings of human justice but the dominion of inhuman time. As devised and refined by James M. Cain, Jim Thompson and their gloomy paperback peers, the crime novel aimed its cheap handgun at the heart of America’s most prized beliefs about its destiny: that the loot we’ve scooped up will belong to us forever and that history allows clean getaways.

Kirn, W. (2005, July 24). ‘No Country for Old Men’: Texas Noir. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/24/books/review/no-country-for-old-men-texas-noir.html?_r=0


🐢

 A Kindness Set Point

My resistance was based, in part, on the fact that compassion meditation was a little annoying–but more significantly, it stemmed from a deep-seated suspicion: that we each have a kindness set point, the result of factory settings that could not be altered, and that mine may not be dialed particularly high.

Harris, D. (2017). 10% happier: how I tamed the voice in my head, reduced stress without losing my edge, and found self-help that actually works: a true story. London, England: Yellow Kite.


toilet

Falling Down

As a description of our collective recession-era funk, “Falling Down” is to the early ’90s what “Network” was to the late ’70s. Written by Ebbe Roe Smith, the movie appraises the state of our national disease in a manner that goes far beyond what economic indicators tell us. If the last election was about change, the soul sickness shown in “Falling Down” reflects precisely why that change was essential. It’s the grim chart at the end of our hospital beds.

Hinson, H. (1993, February 26). Review: Falling Down. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/movies/videos/fallingdownrhinson_a0a7f7.htm


Civil Despair

Falling Down is not meant to be seen as the anatomy of a madman, but as a spectacle of civil despair in which some people give in to galvanizing self-pity and others cope as best they can.

Canby, V. (n.d.). Review/Film; Urban Horrors, All Too Familiar. Retrieved February 26, 1993, from http://www.nytimes.com/movie/review?res=9F0CE0DC113FF935A15751C0A965958260


forlorn-man

All That Messiness

And it feels like self-esteem presaged many of these other simple, straightforward stories; it feels like today, it’s increasingly common for academics to sell — often onstage at a TED Talk — simple, one- or two-sentence accounts of human nature that supposedly are the key to solving problems that have been around for decades or centuries or millennia.

[…]

Like self-esteem, grit scrubs away so much of the complexity and inequality that determines who gets what, and who succeeds and who fails, replacing all that messiness with a clean and memorable storyline that can be summed up in a sentence or two.

Singal, J. (2017, May 30). How the Self-Esteem Craze Took Over America. Retrieved from http://nymag.com/scienceofus/2017/05/self-esteem-grit-do-they-really-help.html?mid=facebook_nymag%3E


Cabin-Chimney-Smoke

Need to Believe

But I also know as a reader, when the writer gets sentimental, you drift because there’s something fishy going on there. You recognize a moment that’s largely about the writer and the writer’s own need to believe in something that might not in fact exist.

Avni, S. (2003, February 11). No way out. Retrieved from http://www.salon.com/2003/02/11/leblanc


beer-mug

Very Dumb Things

“The reason men from 18 to 25 die is because they do very dumb things,” Crossmon said. “I’ve seen this for 30 years. It’s generally alcohol related. During that time in my life, I should have died a hundred times over.”

Smith, M. L. (2017, June 19). With his son lost at the bottom of the river, a father turns to one man who might find him. Retrieved from http://www.startribune.com/with-his-son-lost-at-the-bottom-of-the-river-a-father-turns-to-one-man-who-might-find-him/429133433/


corporate-cogs

Quest for Truth

How dare you not consult a for-profit brand’s public relations department in your quest for Truth.

Feinberg, A. (2015, August 11). Tinder to Vanity Fair: Fuck You, North Koreans Love Us. Retrieved from http://gawker.com/tinder-to-vanity-fair-fuck-you-north-koreans-love-us-1723547611


🌀

 Perfect Storm

This seems to have been the first use of ‘‘perfect storm’’ in the sense in which it typically blows through the news cycle today: as a tool for backward-looking exoneration. A single error in judgment might merit consequences. But if enough people are implicated in it, it becomes not a mistake but a phenomenon: something to be explained rather than punished.

[…]

This kind of ‘‘perfect storm’’ is seductive because it speaks to the unnerving condition of living in a time when much of our well-being is tied up in vast, convoluted systems that few people comprehend. There is a paradoxical comfort in seeing the failure of these systems as a kind of apocalyptic metaphorical weather rather than as the conscious failure of the regulators, executives, and politicians who have been entrusted with power over our lives. It casts them, and us, as noble casualties, like the crew of the Andrea Gail.

Homans, C. (2016, January 20). How the ‘Perfect Storm’ Became the Perfect Cop-Out. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/24/magazine/how-the-perfect-storm-became-the-perfect-cop-out.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&version=Moth-Visible&moduleDetail=inside-nyt-region-2&module=inside-nyt-region®ion=inside-nyt-region&WT.nav=inside-nyt-region%3E


 The Other Half

Half of America is furious at the other half, unable to agree on even previously uncontroversial topics like the weather.

Lyall, S. (2017, June 9). Paying a Price for 8 Days of Flying in America. Retrieved from https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/06/09/business/what-its-like-to-fly-for-a-week-straight.html?smid=fb-nytimes&smtyp=cur&referer=http://m.facebook.com


 Not Have to Fail

The increasing inability of many readers to construe fiction as anything other than roman à clef, or the raw material of biography, is both indulged and encouraged.

[…]

There are arresting glimpses here and there, fragments shored against what the writer must have seen as his ruin, and a sympathetic reader might well believe it possible that had the writer lived (which is to say had the writer found the will and energy and memory and concentration) he might have shaped the material, written it into being, made it work as the story the glimpses suggest, that of a man returning to a place he loved and finding himself at three in the morning confronting the knowledge that he is no longer the person who loved it and will never now be the person he had meant to be. But of course, such a possibility would have been in the end closed to this particular writer, for he had already written that story, in 1936, and called it “The Snows of Kilimanjaro.” “Now he would never write the things that he had saved to write until he knew enough to write them well,” the writer in “The Snows of Kilimanjaro,” thought as he lay dying of gangrene in Africa. And then, this afterthought, the saddest story: “Well, he would not have to fail at trying to write them either.”

Didion, J. (1998, November 9). Last Words: Those Hemingway wrote, and those he didn’t. Retrieved from http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/1998/11/09/last-words-6


♰✡ Chest Thumping

A recent poll conducted by religious researcher Barna Group found that U.S. Christians identified more with the Pharisees than with Christ. This squares nicely with what we plainly see – that U.S. Christians wield their god as nothing more than a justification for chest-thumping self-righteousness.

Yancy, G. (2017, June 19). Is Your God Dead? Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/19/opinion/is-your-god-dead.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-left-region®ion=opinion-c-col-left-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-left-region%3E


💂

LDN

It is easy to be impressed by such a sight, but no one could be seduced by it. Awe is what despots seek because they cannot nurture affection. Intimidation breeds obedience and even a craven kind of attachment, but never tenderness. London used to win people with charm; now it controls them with fear.

Behr, R. (2015, June 29). Goodbye London: why people are leaving the capital. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/jun/29/goodbye-london-moving-to-brighton-house-prices


🏭

 They Cost Too Much

Hire them at 20, they’ll be keen and will work for peanuts. Keep them at 30, they’ll cost you more but still have a lot of energy and experience and something to prove. Get rid of them at 40, they cost too much and they’re resting on their laurels. They’re done.

Source Unknown


💨

 Flood of Effluvia

Howard Stern: Today, with electronic media and social media, can you imagine starting out, you come up with a joke, they put it on the Internet, and it’s kind of like over, the material’s been used up, it spreads so fast.”

Jerry Seinfeld: No, but it doesn’t because there’s such a larger flood of effluvia from everybody, yapping and tweeting and Internet that no one can pay attention to anything so things get less attention.”

The Howard Stern Show. (2013, June 26). Sirius XM Radio.