Summary of “Sitzfleisch: The German concept to get more work done”

Literally translated, sitzfleisch means ‘sitting meat’ or ‘sitting flesh’ – in other words, a term for one’s behind or bottom.
To have sitzfleisch means the ability to sit still for the long periods of time required to be truly productive; it means the stamina to work through a difficult situation and see a project through to the end.
When someone says you have sitzfleisch, it’s usually a professional compliment: it means they believe you’re capable of focusing long enough to complete a tough project or finish whatever work needs to be done.
Sitzfleisch is a great example of how these compound words can pack in additional meaning just through juxtaposition.
A recent article about the most recent Star Wars film notes that, at 152 minutes long, the movie “Certainly strains the sitzfleisch of the average movie-goer.”
How do you go about cultivating a bit of sitzfleisch? Robert Hogan, a fellow with the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology in the US, says the first step is recognising you need to work on it in the first place – and having the desire to improve.
Although sitzfleisch is still fairly universally considered as a positive quality – and the lack of it a sign someone is professionally lacking – the word may take on different connotations in a work world that’s more flexible and no longer 9-to-5.
Hogan, underlines however that it really doesn’t matter whether you’re sitting at an office desk or working less regular hours remotely: you can still have sitzfleisch wherever you work.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Realistic Magic of Hal Ashby, the Greatest Director of the 1970s”

More so because Ashby had a way of making his movies about weighty ideals and real-seeming people, neither of which have aged much in the past 40 or so years.
Of Ashby, Jack Nicholson once said that when friends referred to him, it’s “Like we’re writing a recommendation for a college scholarship.” When Ashby won the Oscar for Best Editing, he delivered one of the shortest and most precise speeches in the ceremony’s history: “To repeat the words of a very dear friend of mine last year when he picked up his Oscar, I only hope that we can use all of our talents and creativity toward peace and love. Thank you.” He walked off the stage without another word.
I realized through more research that the mythology about Hal Ashby being this burnout hippie wastoid that couldn’t do anything was just not accurate.
The director Norman Jewison adopted Hal Ashby as a kind of mentee and became a father figure to the hardworking but nomadic Southwestern refugee.
The Ashby we talk about now was a late-blooming creative talent who spent the first 34 years of his life slowly nosing his way into the upper echelon of the movies.
No matter the genre-lace-curtain thriller or Cold War satire, social-issues drama or sleek caper-Jewison and Ashby pushed the style and structure of movies, toying with jump cuts, pans, close-ups, insert shots, and particularly multiframe formats that would subtly reinvent the visual language of Hollywood movies.
Shampoo is the second Ashby film made from a Robert Towne script, after The Last Detail, and you can feel the director locking into the deep, idiosyncratic material.
Ashby was the original director chosen for Tootsie, getting so far as to shoot screen tests with Dustin Hoffman in character and costume.

The orginal article.

Summary of “What’s Your Type? The Myers-Briggs Test and the Rise of the Personality Quiz”

In 1943, a failed mystery novelist named Isabel Briggs Myers started a career in the new field of personality testing.
Myers had something far more radical in mind, a schema to unearth a person’s true character called the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, which offers a questionnaire that divides test-takers into 16 different possible personality types based on the results.
There were no bad personality types, only bad combinations of personality type and employment.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is simple, a 93-question forced-choice test, loosely based on personality types outlined by Swiss psychoanalyst Carl Jung in his 1921 book Psychological Types.
During the 1940s, the Myers-Briggs test was used by Station S, the nation’s first personality assessment center for spies, as a way to figure out who could handle the pressure of international wartime espionage.
Briggs first started her research into the world of personality types after noticing that her daughter Isabel’s fiancé had a markedly different personality from the rest of her family.
“The administration of personality tests is frequently presented as a gesture of corporate goodwill, a generous acknowledgement of employees’ uniqueness. Under this banner of respect for individuality, organizations are able to shift responsibility for employee satisfaction onto that obliging culprit, ‘fit,'” Annie Murphy Paul wrote in The Cult of Personality Testing, a 2004 book that explores the rise of various personality testing schemas, including Myers-Briggs.
Myers-Briggs resembles earlier stabs at personality divination, like the Woodworth Psychoneurotic Inventory, which was used to evaluate potential soldiers during World War I, and is often cited as the first widely used personality test.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Metabolism and weight loss: debunking myths in the metabolic chamber”

They’ve furthered our understanding of obesity, metabolic syndrome, and diabetes – diseases that are now among the greatest threats to health worldwide – by letting researchers carefully track how individual bodies respond to the calories they’re offered.
Over the years, researchers probing the mysteries of the metabolism figured out that the amount of oxygen we take in, and carbon dioxide we let off, changes depending on how quickly we’re using calories and the type of calories we’re using.
The debunking machine The metabolic chamber – also known as a whole-room calorimeter – is the most precise tool available to track this gas exchange minute by minute.
Studying thousands of subjects in the metabolic unit – the chambers plus NIH hospital wings for patients with diabetes and obesity – has helped researchers show how adaptable the metabolism is, and how it works with our appetite, body composition, and physical activity levels to adjust the calories we’re burning at any moment.
In a remarkable study of Biggest Loser reality TV show participants with obesity, researchers showed that crash dieting can permanently slow a person’s metabolic rate, leading them to hang on to the calories they were eating for longer, though this isn’t true for everybody who loses weight.
“If I knew how the brain is aware of how much the body weighs, and how to regulate how many calories it burned off, I could change that setting and help an overweight person burn more calories through an increase in metabolic rate,” NIH metabolism and brown fat researcher Aaron Cypess told me over the phone before my stay.
How the metabolic chamber actually measures metabolism Halfway through my morning in the metabolic chamber, I had eaten and rested at prescribed intervals, and hit the exercise bike for 30 minutes.
Doubly labeled water can only detect a 5 percent change in metabolic rate over seven to 10 days, more than double what the metabolic chamber can see.

The orginal article.

Summary of “California: San Francisco, rich and poor, turns to simple street solutions that underscore the city’s complexities”

At the same time, the city has banned the use of another plastic item: the drinking straw.
The streets of San Francisco – hilly, curvy, cinematic and, in recent years, a bleak showcase for the mentally ill and economically displaced – have long reflected this eccentric city’s governing priorities and many civic contradictions.
Breed is the first African American woman to run San Francisco, emerging from a close election in June that was largely about how the city is changing and what should be done to preserve its character.
“You begin to wonder about all the tax dollars and whether they are being spent in the right way,” said Jeffrey Ouyang, a 10-year city resident who works for the tech start-up Zumper, a real estate search site.
Among Breed’s first decisions was to deploy a five-person Public Works crew to do nothing but clean the streets of human feces – it was dubbed the “Poop patrol” – as the city has received more than 14,000 reports about human waste this year alone.
Under a measure before the city government, new tech companies would not be allowed to open on-site cafeterias, long a lure to would-be employees, hoping to better spread the wealth from within the city’s insular tech offices to the local restaurants and lunch trucks just outside.
It is not just Breed and city employees working on those streets.
“This is all kind of new to me – homelessness, the drug use, people living in BART [transit] stations,” said Piña, who came to the city from the San Joaquin Valley city of Tracy.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Ditch the almond milk: why everything you know about sustainable eating is probably wrong”

“But what people don’t know is the environmental damage almond plantations are doing in California, and the water cost. It takes a bonkers 1,611 US gallons to produce 1 litre of almond milk,” says the Sustainable Restaurant Association’s Pete Hemingway.
According to Crystal Market Research, the US reusable water bottle market will be worth $9.62bn by 2023, up $3bn in a decade.
Phone, purse/wallet, water bottle – make it part of your daily routine.
In reality, says Friends of the Earth’s Emma Priestland, weirdly designed or coloured bottles are likely to be sifted out at recycling sites and will end up in landfill: “Robinson’s Fruit Shoot bottles are made of easily recycled Pet, but because is solid purple, it’s difficult to recycle. If separated, opaque colours can be recycled by chemical recycling, but that increases the cost, effort and energy required,” she says.
The European Pet Bottle Platform, which advises the bottling industry on design, recommends the use of clear Pet if possible.
One Water is no ordinary bottled water: the company is carbon neutral and its profits fund clean-water projects in the developing world.
As for the plastic waste, there is a robust market in recycled Pet bottles.
An earlier version quoted Pete Hemingway as saying to make 1 litre of almond milk, it takes 1,611 litres of water.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Don’t Underestimate the Power of Women Supporting Each Other at Work”

Don’t underestimate the power of women connecting and supporting each other at work.
Senior-level women who champion younger women even today are more likely to get negative performance reviews, according to a 2016 study in The Academy of Management Journal.
According to a 2016 McKinsey report, Women in the Workplace, white men make up 36% of entry-level corporate jobs, and white women make up 31%. But at the very first rung above that, those numbers change to 47% for white men and 26% for white women – a 16% drop.
For women of color, the drop from 17% to 11% is a plunge of 35%. People tend to think that whatever conditions exist now are “Normal.” Maybe this explains men’s blind spots: at companies where only one in ten senior leaders are women, says McKinsey, nearly 50% of men felt women were “Well represented” in leadership.
I hope it lowered the attrition rate of women working at my company – rates that are, across all corporate jobs, stubbornly higher for women than men, especially women of color.
What are women in the workplace to do, when research shows that we’re penalized for trying to lift each other up? The antidote to being penalized for sponsoring women may just be to do it more – and to do it vocally, loudly, and proudly – until we’re able to change perceptions.
There are massive benefits for the individual and the organization when women support each other.
I’m thrilled by the rise of women’s organizations like Sallie Krawchek’s Ellevate Network, a professional network of women supporting each other across companies to change the culture of business at large.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Elaina Plott: The Bullet in My Arm”

If people in Tuscaloosa talked about gun violence at all-in the wake of a mass shooting, or after the rare hunting accident-it was as an unfortunate but explicable bit of collateral damage: Occasionally cars hit people, but we still drive.
Did the person who shot me buy the weapon there? How long did the sale take? I pictured him-he is faceless in my mind, but always a man-selecting a gun, and then tossing in a pack of Dentyne Ice, because it was right there by the cash register, and why not.
Knee-jerk calls for gun control didn’t resonate with me.
Back in Washington, I’d spent months talking with Republican lawmakers who bristled at the notion of “Commonsense solutions” to gun violence.
“There’s a certain maturity level required for guns, in general, and especially with something like [an AR-15]. Some people probably shouldn’t have them.”
In all the times I’ve talked with GOP lawmakers about guns, why have they never mentioned that age restrictions are, for many conservatives, a worthwhile starting point? Better question: Do they even know?
Earlier in the trip, I’d watched as the guys in the store had handled guns.
We were comfortable in the ATV, talking about our 10-year plans-I didn’t have one; he thought that was risky-the gun and the Labrador resting between us.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The End of Neutrality”

The very idea of value neutrality that rose to prominence after World War II-the idea that individuals or institutions can fairly arbitrate among competing values in a pluralistic society-has fallen on hard times, leaving us unsure of where to turn for a reliable account of the world.
The importance we place on neutrality in our institutions is actually somewhat new.
From both sides, one heard the same charge: that the ostensible neutrality of the government and other public institutions masked an ideology-one that was either aggressively liberal or cravenly conservative.
Still, these early doubts about the professed neutrality of our knowledge-forming institutions did not fatally undermine them.
Conservative shops like the Heritage Foundation might have fancied themselves right-wing counterweights to “Liberal” ones like the Brookings Institution, but Brookings, like the network news shows, adhered to a neutral scholarly ideal.
Under Trump, neutrality has become a difficult position for any individual or institution to maintain.
The collapse of neutral institutions also feeds a vicious cycle of polarization and extremism.
Some long-standing neutral institutions, particularly in journalism, seem to be feeling pressure to abandon their historic role in order to please their audiences.

The orginal article.