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Monday, May 20, 2013

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres


"Ever since Marissa Mayer’s new job as CEO of Yahoo and her pregnancy were announced nearly simultaneously last July, every one of her personal and executive decisions has been picked over by a million rubberneckers. First, there was the statement: “My maternity leave will be a few weeks long and I’ll work throughout it,” which spawned a thousand frothing blog posts for her and against her. Then she followed through on that promise and took only two weeks off and it sparked another spasm of praise and fury. After that, news broke that she built a nursery next to her office at the same time as she was putting an end to Yahoo’s telecommuting policy, which led to widespread criticism of Mayer as anti-family and out of touch; then she announced that Yahoo was expanding maternity leave to 16 weeks and paternity leave to eight weeks, which inspired mostly cheers. Now people are complaining that her new acquisition strategy will destroy employee morale. Whatever one thinks about Mayer, it’s undeniable that no other current CEO, male or female, is scrutinized in the same nitpicky, ad hominem way. Are there articles about how much maternity leave Sam’s Club CEO Roz Brewer took? Or what parental leave policies Pepsico CEO Indra Nooyi has instituted? Brigid Schulte at The Washington Post points out that numerous male CEOs—including Best Buy’s Hubert Joly and Bank of America’s Brian T. Moynihan—have scaled back their company’s telecommuting policies with no public blowback. It is Mayer’s job to do what she believes is best for her company and her board, not what the peanut gallery thinks is best. So is this kind of obsessive tracking of Mayer’s decisions going to affect her tenure as CEO? And, worse, is it also bad for the women who hope to follow in her footsteps?" (TheDailyBeast)


"Is waking up to Charlie Rose on CBS This Morning and ending a hectic weekday by watching Mr. Rose’s interview show just not enough Mr. Rose? Good news: starting in July, PBS viewers will be able to kick off their weekends with the well-respected newsman. Charlie Rose Weekend , a new 30 minute series hosted by Mr. Rose, will air on Fridays at 8:30, the non-profit public broadcasting service (funded by 'viewers like you') announced this morning. 'PBS is my first broadcast home and I’m excited to embark on a new project that, while distinctly different in nature from Charlie Rose, will build on its history and harness the possibilities of the future by a full use of technology and social media,' Mr. Rose said in a statement. 'We will offer a fresh look at the people shaping our lives and the questions that demand answers and context. By bringing together top newsmakers each week and engaging the audience in innovative ways, we will invite viewers to start their weekends on Friday with PBS.' The show, which will draw on Mr. Rose’s nightly news show, will focus on 'the events and conversations shaping the week and the week ahead'  in politics, science, business, culture, media and sport." (Observer)


"Society is swirling with word that Leonard Lauder, the billionaire chairman of the Estée Lauder company who lost his beloved wife, Evelyn, in 2011 after 52 years of marriage, may not be a single man for much longer. Page Six revealed the 79-year-old has been dating Linda E. Johnson, the 54-year-old president and CEO of the Brooklyn Public Library. Now we are told, 'They are very happy and are talking about marriage.' The news will devastate some socialites, who view Lauder, who is worth nearly $8 billion, as a huge catch. But Johnson, an attractive brunette, is rather distinguished in her own right. A Lauder rep said, 'We do not comment on executives’ personal relationships.'" (PageSix)


"Last week in New York. Women in the news. Looking over the myriad events and activities, I noticed there were many women prominent on the calendar. Wednesday night over at 583 Park Avenue, generationOn whose mission is to 'inspire, equip, and mobilize youth to take action that changes the world and themselves through service,' honored Bank of America, Chelsea Clinton and Julie Fisher Cummings for their commitment to youth service ... Silda Wall Spitzer introduced me to this organization several years ago when she founded Children For Children – an organization that has since merged into what is now generationOn. Their objective is two-fold: empowering children and young people to make decisions, take responsibility and become leaders through service to their community and to their contemporaries in the communities. Aside from inspiring the children who participate, their works potentially inspires all of us. In her acceptance speech, Chelsea Clinton pointed out that 'GenerationOn helps to empower young people by providing the tools they need to become compassionate leaders, community activists and change agents, a mission that is crucial to the future of our country' ... There were 350 attending the evening which helped raise more than $797,000. The evening was hosted and co-chaired by longtime generationOn advocates Kevin Arquit, Brian and Barbara Goldner and Silda. Among those attending were Deborah Roberts and Al Roker, Andrea and Maurice DuBois, Amy Carlson, and Lauren Bush Lauren." (NYSocialDiary)



"The Bushwick drag scene is positively on fire right now, and promoter Trey LaTrash's Dizzyland, a monthly underground party and its venue, The Spectrum are right in the middle of the blaze. In addition to the usual nightlife accompaniments, Dizzyland's flyer also lists a credit for "Vibe Assistance" (that's by Kerry Farias, if you're wondering). We checked out these vibes Saturday night (and well into Sunday morning -- we left just before sunrise, at which point the dancefloor was still going strong). " (Papermag)



"I’m a physician in my early forties. I make $450-500K. I read a lot about finance and I know that technically I am in the 1%, but I don’t feel rich at all. I don’t know if it was the way I was raised or because for a time I was living paycheck to paycheck or if it’s because I have three kids (and hence, eventually will have three tuitions to pay), but I don’t feel wealthy yet. Maybe it’s because I live in an affluent suburb of a big city and most of my neighbors seem to be doing really well. I don’t know. Have you run across other folks like this?" (TheBillfold)


"In 1968, Donald Judd — the artist known for his boxy, implacable sculptures and wall pieces — paid $68,000 for 101 Spring Street, a graceful but dilapidated five-story cast-iron building, and began his renovation by hauling out truckloads of trash. Over the years, he kept installing art and modifying the architecture in pursuit of an ideal balance. After his death in 1994, the building sat, stilled. Starting on June 3, after a three-year, $23 million restoration, the Judd Foundation will open 101 Spring to the public for guided tours in groups of eight by reservation. Art critic Jerry Saltz and architecture critic Justin Davidson walked through it together." (NYMag)

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