Networking: the top activity for business success.

I’ve noticed that summer associate season is in full swing — not only because clients are mentioning their summer programs, but because I’m seeing more and more summer associate-related searches that people have entered before landing on the Life at the Bar blog.  So, it’s time for me to trot out my favorite topic not just for summers, but also for new associates and even long-time lawyers: networking.

Why is networking my favorite topic?  Because no other single activity has the potential of networking.  A network is a resource for business development, for future employment, for getting the help you need from other professionals, for developing an ad hoc advisory board for your career, for plugging into the grapevine for business news, and for fun and social activity.  (I met my husband at a networking event, as a matter of fact.)  Many people hate the idea of networking because it has a reputation for requiring pushy behavior, but the great news is that good networking is about meeting people, developing relationships, and seeking to serve.  And the key point is that a network must be cultivated over time.  There’s no time like the present to start building your network — and if you wait until you need the resources a network can offer, you’re too late.

Bruce Allen of The Marketing Catalyst blog has a terrific 7-part series on networking.  Start with his Idea #1 and follow the consecutive days to read the whole series.  My favorites are #3 (how to handle the lull when standing alone at a networking event, with no one to talk to, and facing the desire to flee the event) and #7 (how to make sure to do the follow-up that creates the opportunity for a networking meeting contact to grow into a business relationship).

If you’re interested in some of my previous posts on networking, they’re collected here.

Think multitasking is beneficial? Think again.

I’ve been intending to post about a New York Times article I read a few months ago, and today’s the day.  I have noticed recently that I’m receiving a lot of emails informing me that the sender is now limiting the number of times she checks email in the course of a day, and to contract her by phone for pressing matters.  (More on why that is on another day.)

And yesterday, I happened upon a provocative — if rather old — article on reporting on a test run by a London psychiatrist.  The study tested three groups in completing an IQ test: the first group worked only on the test; the second group worked on the test while receiving emails, phone calls, and text messages; and the third group worked only on the test but had smoked marijuana.  The first group, of course, performed the best; the pot-smokers came in second (down 4 points); and the distracted test-takers came in last by 10 points.  According to the researcher, juggling incoming messages has an effect equal to missing an entire night of sleep.

The article Slow Down, Brave Multitasker, and Don’t Read This in Traffic reports consistent results.  Neurobiological evidence indicates that the human brain simply can’t do two tasks at once, if the tasks require any mental processing.  In other words, we can walk and talk at the same time (most of us, anyway) but, as reported in the article, when study participants were asked to see an image of a vowel and then say the vowel and to hear a sound and press the correct key on a keyboard, participants experienced up to a second’s delay.  As the researcher who performed that test notes, a second usually isn’t a big issue, unless it’s a second’s delay in hitting the brakes while driving at 60 mph.  The researcher doesn’t use his cell phone while driving.

Another Study I’d seen reported elsewhere that reveals surprising effects of interruptions.  Observing “information workers” in high-tech companies showed that interruptions occur about every 10-and-a-half minutes.  (I found another source that, regrettably, I’ve misplaced suggesting that interruptions occur every 3 minutes — and my experience indicates that to be a much more believable number.)  On average, workers take 23 minutes to get back to the interrupted task, including a tour through two other unrelated tasks; and about 20% of the time, workers never do get back to the original work.

Now, what does this all mean?

1.  We work better when we avoid interruptions.  If you’re trying to get something accomplished, close your door, put your phone on do-not-disturb, and don’t check email.

For those of you who are hyperventilating now, try it.  It’s a big change, but it’s effective.  You can always ask you assistant to watch your email (consider, of course, that you’re creating an inefficiency there…) while you get accustomed to this idea.

2.  Work in focused blasts and build in recovery time.

Studies indicate that the ideal “focus” period is 45 minutes, with 15 minutes left for recovery.  Even if you choose to check email repeatedly throughout the day, consider checking it instead during your 15-minute recovery time.

3.  Devise methods to keep your place during interruptions.

Sometimes interruptions are unavoidable, and that tends to be more true for those lower on the totem pole.  Keep a pad nearby and make a fast note when you’re interrupted to remind you of where you left off.  Perhaps you can’t choose not to be interrupted, but everyone can say, “Hang on, let me finish this note so I won’t lose it.”

Are you busy — Or productive?

One of the most important pieces of coaching rests in illuminating distinctions.  I have several favorites that come up in the course of a great many coaching engagements: reaction vs. response, hearing vs. listening, assertion vs. assessment, interesting vs. purposeful, and so on.  One distinction is particularly relevant to effective action: busy vs. productive.  My favorite definition of busy is “full of or characterized by activity.”  Another definition of busy (often used as in a pattern or design, but still relevant here) is “cluttered with detail to the point of being distracting.”  Hmmmmmm.  Productive is, of course, derived from the verb to produce, and my favorite definitions of to produce are “to create by physical or mental effort” and “to bring into existence; give rise to; cause.”

As I’ve written before, I think we live in a culture that embraces busyness and has made it a virtue to be busy.  And yet, I’m taken by the idea that being busy can mean being “cluttered with detail.”  I’ve certainly found myself there: researching something that’s of tangential relevance to what I’m doing, so that at the end of the day I’ve worked hard all day long and accomplished… Well… Not much.  But it’s an easy trap to slip into, because it feels good to be busy.

I once had a conversation with a colleague about billing.  He said that he’d spent an entire hour staring out of his office window and thinking about a case, and he came up with an approach and strategy that simplified a difficult issue, one that substantially increased the client’s chances of success.  His conundrum?  How to bill for time spent staring and thinking — as well as how to find more of that time and how to protect it since he didn’t appear to be “busy” but he was in fact very productive.

The law actually recognizes this distinction in billing rates.  A 1st or 2nd year associate is billed at a lower rate than a more senior associate or partner because (among other reasons) experience teaches a lawyer how to use her time most productively; the work accomplished in an hour by a senior associate is almost certainly more useful (i.e. more productive) than that accomplished in the same hour by a new associate.  And yet, both may appear to be equally busy.

When someone describes working a lot without getting the results he wants, I often suggest he ask, “Am I busy, or am I productive?”  The question is an adjunct of the Quadrant II time/priority management system that Stephen Covey teaches, and it takes that system to the next level because the question makes manifest the danger of working on an important task without being productive.

This question is particularly appropriate for practice/career management issues.  For example, in the course of a job search, is it busy or productive to spend hours reading ads on a job board?  The answer likely depends on the board and on whether there’s follow-up to an ad of interest.  It’s also appropriate in substantive practice at times, to question whether certain activities are productive or whether they’re just generating work.

So, consider devoting a few minutes today to checking over your task list, or to reflecting on how you spent your time last week, and ask… “Am I busy, or am I productive?”

How can your practice become known?

Do you ever feel that you’re just one small lawyer in a large sea?  New lawyers often begin their practices wondering how to distinguish themselves from the hundreds or thousands of other lawyers occupying the same niche.  And that feeling isn’t limited to new lawyers, by any means.  Though the question may fade, it certainly re-emerges when a lawyer is preparing to grow her practice or is considering some shift in substantive areas.  Clients are necessary for maintenance of a profitable practice, obviously, and differentiation can help to attract clients.  So, how can you differentiate yourself?

Blog (but check your state’s ethics rules first).  My background is in patent litigation, and I often referred to the Patently-O Blog by Dennis Crouch.  Patently-O is known for, among other things, its full coverage of every patent case decided by the Federal Circuit.  It became the go-to reference for what’s going on in patent law, and I’d venture to guess that an amazingly high number of patent lawyers and “civilians” who are interested in patent law read the blog on a near-daily basis.  I was astonished when I learned that Dennis started the blog less than a year after being admitted to practice.  He’s since moved on to academia, a move that was quite likely assisted by his blogging efforts as well as his other credentials.

A number of lawyers who blog boast that they attract clients largely through their blogs, and Kevin O’Keefe (a lawyer who has turned to assisting other lawyers with Internet marketing through lexBlog) is known for the trademarked assertion that “Real Lawyers Have Blogs.”  (And, of course, Kevin has a blog as well.)  Perhaps it’s a bit of overstatement to say, “blog it and they will come,” but it isn’t a bad starting point since blogging provides a platform through which a lawyer may share resources, analysis, and enough personal content to become known to readers.  How to do that is, of course, well beyond the scope on this blog.

A word of warning, though: ethics rules absolutely apply to blogging, and some states (most notably New York, amidst much controversy) consider blogging to constitute lawyer advertising.  If you’re going to blog, get educated about the ethical issues first.

Create a unique experience for your clients.

What can you offer clients that other lawyers don’t?  The opportunities vary widely by practice area, but any value-added service is a good step toward differentiation.  Don’t overlook the basics that may set you apart (though they shouldn’t): quick responses to phone calls and emails, regular case updates, or offering educational resources as necessary (i.e. on how to prepare to give deposition/trial testimony, what to consider when getting ready to make estate plans, etc.).  And consider introducing your client to every member of your legal team who will be involved with the representation.  Even something as quick as an introductory letter identifying other lawyers, paralegals, and office assistants that is signed by each can offer a client comfort when contacting your office.  Consider, of course, what is appropriate for your practice: what will impress a personal injury client may be radically different from what will impress the CEO or general counsel of a multi-million dollar corporation.

Be active and visible in the community.

I’ve written about networking in the past and explained that networking is really about building relationships.  Being active in the community — volunteering, serving on boards, working with non-profits in other capacities — is a terrific way to become known.  It provides a context for networking that often makes it more comfortable for reluctant networkers, and it may present you the opportunity to offer guidance and suggestions that will reflect well on you as a lawyer.  Moreover, you may have opportunities to speak or write through these channels, both of which will raise your profile.

Be clear about what makes you different.

If you want to differentiate yourself from other practitioners, it’s imperative to connect with an internal compass that will point to what does indeed make you different.  If you don’t know what that is, you certainly won’t be able to convince anyone else.

When the words just won’t come.

Have you ever had the experience of sitting down to write something important, having a rough idea of what you wanted to say, and yet finding yourself so tired or so distracted that you have significantly reduced ability to get the writing done?

I’m not talking about ordinary writer’s block or waiting for a muse to rest on your shoulder — that’s a luxury rarely available to lawyers.  What I’m describing is the temporary inability to draft something that’s reasonably straightforward in a way that accomplishes a workmanlike goal.  What can you do to jar the words loose?

1.  Take a break.  Get up from your desk, get the blood moving, get a change of scenery.  There is little more disheartening or un-motivating than staring at a blank screen (or pad) and searching for the words you need.  I strongly suggest not reading or trying to write, because that’s just more of what’s challenging you in the moment.  Get a cup of coffee, walk around the block (or at least around your floor), or close your eyes and listen to music that energizes you.

2.    Map your approach.  Sometimes the problem is having an idea that’s not yet sharp enough to reduce it to paper.  In that instance, try creating a map.  Write the core issue in the center of a blank piece of paper, then write related words or symbols around it and connect them to the main issue with a line.  Wikipedia has a good description of mind mapping, including a picture of a sample map.  Mind mapping encourages non-linear thought and easy organization, and it will create a path for you to follow as you begin writing.

3.  Begin in the middle.  Pick some part of your final product and start there.  Although a conclusion is a nice place to begin because it will define your approach and may thus make the rest of the writing easier, the important thing is to write some part of your draft.  Even if it’s a paragraph of illogical, emotional argument that you’ll cut from the second draft, just starting will move you forward.

4.  Just start writing.  Many lawyers have an internal critic who comes out to play at inopportune times.  You may start a sentence six times and scrap it each time because it just doesn’t sound right, and the result is verbal paralysis.  So give yourself permission to write something, anything, no matter how bad it may be.  Even if you end up with the legal equivalent of “it was a dark and stormy night,” at least you’ll have a start and something to edit.

5.  Try something unconventional.  When all else fails, turn what you’ve been doing inside out.  Try dictating instead.  Using a different mode of communication can be enough of a change to access the inchoate concept floating around in your mind.  If you don’t want to dictate, try talking out loud, whether to yourself or to a colleague.  Or write in another setting.  Though it may be heresy to some, there is actually no law that requires you to write in your office or even your home office.  Maybe writing at Starbucks or in a park would help.  Maybe you’d be more effective sitting cross-legged on your bed.  Give it a try.  Or write in longhand instead of typing, or vice versa.  Try writing like someone you admire (how would [insert an esteemed lawyer here] phrase this?) or writing like a pirate.  If you get to the point of trying something unconventional, make it as wacky as need be — laughter can also help to break the verbal jam — and then consider whether or how to bill your client for this “out of the box” experiment.

Another take on what constitutes work/life balance and why it matters

I’ve been rereading First Things First, by Stephen Covey, A. Roger Merrill, and Rebecca Merrill recently, as I’m creating my list of “must read” books for clients concerned with time management, work/life balance, and the like.  This book was first published in 1994 and I read it then.  Perhaps the best accolade I can give it is to say that I’ve remembered many of its principles and still apply them today.

While reading the section entitled “The Main Thing Is to Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing,” I started thinking about work/life balance and how “the main thing” may vary from person to person, and how work/life balance is often so poorly understood because the phrase suggests that there is a perfect balance between work and life that everyone should attain.  That view is (in my mind) so fallacious as to be dangerous.  And last night, I ran across two paragraphs in First Things First that address the issue beautifully:

We live our lives in terms of roles — not in the sense of role playing, but in the sense of authentic parts we’ve chosen to fill.  We may have important roles at work, in the family, in the community, or in other areas of life.  Roles represent responsibilities, relationships, and areas of contribution.

Much of our pain in life comes from the sense that we’re succeeding in one role at the expense of other, possibly even more important roles.  We may be doing great as vice-president of the company, but not doing well at all as a parent or spouse.  We may be succeeding in meeting the needs of our clients, but failing to meet our own need for personal development and growth . . . Balance among roles does not simply mean you’re spending time in each role, but that these roles work together for the accomplishment of your mission.

(Emphasis mine.)  We each choose the roles we want to live, and we define how we want to live them through a mission statement or similar expression of values and intentions.  Outside forces may impact the roles we live (the law, for instance, provides a minimum standard of care for parents) but generally speaking, we determine how to perform in and through each role.  For instance, one person’s mission statement might open by saying, “I am a lawyer who….” Another could read, “I am a parent who….”  And yet another might write, “I am a person who….”

I hold that the mission statement that revolves around the person, not the roles that person seeks to fill, stands the greatest chance of success because the statement recognizes that a variety of attributes and skills will create the life that the person wants to live.  The same is true, I believe, for career success.  We bring our whole selves to work.  As Judge Tuttle put it, “[S]ome specialized and highly developed techniques may be included, but [the professional’s] mode of expression is given its deepest meaning by the personality of the practitioner. In a very real sense his professional service cannot be separate from his personal being. He has no goods to sell, no land to till. His only asset is himself.”

Work/life balance is necessary to replenish the self and to keep the asset fresh.  The balance supports the work.  And so (as I continue to seek a different descriptor) work/life synergy renews and sustains the resource that accomplishes the work.  Just as some of us need 6 hours of sleep a night and some need 9, the source of renewal will vary in quality and quantity from person to person.  What’s more, the synergy goes both ways: just as “life” facilitates “work,” “work” may facilitate “life.”  A lawyer may carry out the duties of her work in part to teach her child of what it means to be a professional, or perhaps she may use her work to further her political beliefs.  And quality and quantity will vary in this direction as well.  What matters is the recognition that each part of a lawyer’s life, each role that he chooses to assume, will either support or undermine his overall effectiveness in life — recognition that exists in concert with appropriate action.  And that’s why “work/life balance” and “work/life synergy” matter.

I challenge you today to consider what roles constitute your life.  And then, search for the synergy among the roles that creates the whole.  How can you strengthen your performance in each role in a way that will strengthen the whole of your life?

Anger: Managing the amygdala hijack

One of my clients (“Bob”) has had numerous bad experiences with opposing counsel.  Over the last few years, he’s felt more and more worn down by angry phone calls, disingenuous arguments, and general incivility.

(A sidenote: a question we addressed is whether Bob is really surrounded by opposing counsel out to gain some advantage by making him and/or his clients miserable.  Viewed with a dispassionate perspective, the answer was no.  The lesson?  Always step outside your own life and observe.  This perspective will let you recognize whether your day-to-day judgments are well-founded or whether they’re being colored by something else.)

One opposing counsel (“Fred”) was particularly nasty.  Bob had been litigating against Fred for just over a year, and he had recognized that Fred’s strategy was to make him angry.  So, each time he had to interact with Fred, he braced himself and prepared for something outlandish.  But there was one particular tactic that really drove Bob over the edge.  The tactic itself doesn’t matter — let’s say it was being accused of unprofessional conduct — and each time Fred would use this tactic, Bob would become enraged.  To his credit, he was able to manage that anger reasonably well, but enough was revealed that Fred knew he’d found the “right” weapon.  All Fred had to do was use a few choice words, and Bob would become ballistic.  He described a tingling sensation throughout his body, the awareness that his blood pressure had spiked, and great difficulty with remaining engaged on the topic at hand.

What Bob experienced is an “amygdala hijack.”  The amygdala is the “fight or flight” and emotional memory part of the brain. Its job is to protect by comparing incoming data with emotional memories. An amygdala hijack occurs when we respond out of measure with the actual threat because it has triggered a much more significant emotional threat. For instance, the amygdala will react similarly to the threat of being eaten by a tiger (physical threat) and the threat of an ego attack (emotional threat) by bringing on the fight or flight reaction.

When one experiences an amygdala hijack, the amygdala overtakes the neocortex (the thinking part of the brain) and there’s little or no ability to rely on intelligence or reasoning.  The effect is that energy is drawn exclusively into the hijack.  The immediate result of a hijack is a decrease in working memory.  Adrenaline is released and will be present and effective for 18 minutes, and other hormones are released into the bloodstream that will take 3-4 hours to clear.

Randy Chittum, an executive coach on the faculty of Georgetown’s leadership coaching program, has recommended the following steps to deal with an amygdala hijack:

Stop.  Stop whatever you’re doing.  Bob’s strategy was to put the call on hold or to step out of the room for a minute; if that was impossible, he would go silent for a moment and identify for himself what had just happened.  (“Ah, Fred just said again that I’m unprofessional.”)   This step keeps the neocortex engaged and can prevent the amagdala’s takeover.

Oxygenate.  Breathe deeply, with intention and purpose.  This step also keeps the neocortex engaged.

Strengthen appreciation.  It’s difficult to have two emotional experiences at the same time, and appreciation counters the hijack.  While it’s especially effective to appreciate the source of the hijack (i.e., for Bob to appreciate Fred as a person, to appreciate his zealous representation of his client, etc.), any appreciation of anything will be helpful.  Not surprisingly, Bob found it difficult to appreciate Fred, so he would instead think about his family and bask it his appreciation of his wife and children.

Survey the landscape.  After the hijack, spend some time exploring what happened and why.  Recognizing the trigger will allow you to avoid being triggered in the future.  After a recognizing that Fred tended to trot out the accusation of unprofessional conduct when he didn’t get an extension or some other accommodation, Bob was prepared.  He knew that his work had been successful when Fred one day expressed his surprise at Bob’s lack of professionalism, and Bob was able to laugh and respond, “Come on, Fred, we both know that isn’t true and isn’t the point.  Feel free to make your motion, but I can’t consent to another delay in this case.”

Women in law firms

The WSJ Law Blog has an interesting post asking whether women lawyers are reaching a crisis point.  The MIT Workplace Center has issued a report titled “Women Lawyers and Obstacles to Leadership,” which states that of the 1000 Massachusetts lawyers surveyed, 31% of female associates and 18% of male associates had left private practice, as had 35% of female associates with children and 15% of male associates with children.  As might be expected, the report criticized heavy billable hour requirements, inflexible schedules including the lack of real part-time options, and “a lack of appreciation for the need to balance work and family.”

The WSJ Blog then goes on to ask whether readers would encourage their daughters to enter the law and whether readers agree with the report’s summary that “nothing is changing” concerning women’s role in law.  And as is often the case, much of the fun of the post lies in the comments.

Steve Seckler of the Counsel to Counsel blog has a different take on the report in his post Women Are “Staying” in Droves.  Reviewing the same report, and having attended a presentation on it, Steve leads with the statistics that almost 80% of women who leave law firm practice stay in or return to the workforce and more than 50% stay in the legal profession.  The issue, as Steve sees it, is focused on women’s decisions to leave law firms, resulting in the much-quoted statistic that only 17% of large law firm partners are women.   (Robert Ambrogi treats the issue similarly in his post The Uneven Partnership Track.)  Fascinating to me is the email attached at the end of Steve’s post from Sheila Statlender, a clinical psychologist who is a member of the Boston Bar Association’s Standing Committee of Work/Life Balance, in which she fantasizes about women and their “male supporters” walking out of their firms for a couple of hours or a day to protest current conditions for women and to support/brainstorm/educate around strategies to address those conditions.  Good reading, though I’m not sure I’ll be holding my breath for enactment.

This issue presents a variety of challenges: opportunities for women vs. men in career and family; biological imperatives and societal response to them; sociological stereotypes; law firm economics; family economics… The list could go on and on.  Looking at the questions raised on the “big picture” level, it seems to me that what we’re seeing is the challenge that arises whenever someone takes on a one-dimensional role that is (or is expected to be) all-encompassing.  It’s the perception that a lawyer who’s a Big Firm Partner (or Associate) can’t also be a Mother, because those two roles conflict.

Perhaps I’m feeling unduly idealistic today, but I wonder whether demoting these roles to being aspects of an integrated, whole person might be a step in the right direction — with a hefty dose of reconciling the whole person to the realities of law firm and personal economics.  Not to say that finding that integration is an easy process or without challenges and trade-offs, but most questions tend to move toward solution when posed as A and B rather than A or B.  I also will take a stand for the proposition that working fathers are as entitled to the same personal/professional integration as working mothers, and the “societal stare decisis” that holds otherwise (to quote a brilliant turn of phrase by a “2L Woman” commenter on the WSJ Law Blog) deserves to be overturned.

But, when the measuring stick for so many is profits per partner, doesn’t the dollar determine the destiny?

Ultimate guide to productivity: My tip

Cristina Favreau, The Savvy Entrepreneur, has tagged me to participate in The Ultimate Guide to Productivity, started by Ben Yoskovitz of Instigator Blog.  The rules are as follows:

  1. Write a post on your best productivity tips. Challenge yourself by picking your single best productivity tip (although this isn’t a requirement; you can give us more if you want!)
  2. Include links to other people that have written posts, or include their tips in your post with proper attribution.
  3. If you use Technorati Tags then tag your post “ultimate guide to productivity”.
  4. Tag others in your post to spread the meme. Tag as many people as you like!

Other responses are collected in another Instigator Blog post titled A Bonanza of Productivity Tips.  I’d love to read through the other tips before offering my own, just to be sure that I’m not duplicating someone else’s submission, but productivity dictates that I not take the time to do that right now!  Instead, I’ll offer my 3 top tips, in hopes that at least 1 will be new to the mix.

1.  Work for 45 minutes each morning before checking email.  I admit that I do cheat a smidge on this, by checking my BlackBerry before I get started working.  But that allows me to check for any urgent messages without getting caught up in “reading through quickly” and, worse yet, “just taking a second to respond” before I get started working.  I love email and rely on it for both business and personal communication, but it can really suck the time out of my day.

2.  Get up from my desk at least every 90 minutes.  I discovered that a change of scenery and some movement will refresh my energy.  It also keeps me from feeling like I’m 90 years old when I finally do stand up.  I don’t do much — sometimes just a few quick stretches, sometimes a run for water or other necessities — but my mind is always clearer when I sit back down.

3.  Think energy management before time management.  Ok, so I lifted this verbatim from the time management workshop I presented on Friday.  Energy management is critical, because if I don’t make sure to keep my energy up, I can’t make the most effective use of my time, nor can I be maximally productive.  I use what I learned in The Power of Full Engagement to keep my energy up physically, emotionally, and mentally, and I stay connected to the purpose of what I’m doing (which the authors of Full Engagement refer to as “spiritual capacity”) by asking, “For the sake of what am I doing [this]?”  While I am careful to use my time as productively as possible, I do so in the context of managing my energy first.

Rather than tag anyone in particular, I’d like to open this up to others generally.  What are your top productivity tips? Please comment or post on your own blog.  I’m looking forward to learning some new gems!

Just for fun: Time management skills

Time management has been on my mind this week, since I’m delivering a workshop tomorrow on that topic.  It often figures in coaching, sometimes as a key presenting issue and often as a secondary issue that comes to light in the course of the engagement.

Procrastination is always a big one.  It’s especially challenging for lawyers, I believe, because procrastination really can pay off.  There’s little point in preparing for a meeting too far in advance, since dates very often change.  Same goes for hearings, depositions, on and on.  I’ve identified tactics to deal with this kind of well-motivated procrastination, but that’s another post for another day.

To illustrate a different kind of procrastination, I’ll be sharing this YouTube video tomorrow.  (This was my first foray into the YouTube world.  I’m staggered at the number of videos there and the amount of time that people must spend making and watching videos.  But, this is from the woman who doesn’t own a TV, so perhaps I’m just out of step.)