Fire, Fire: How does it work?

Eli did the majority of the work to build the fire at the cabin tonight. The fire had come alive after we got it started with a spark. "What happens to make fire?" he asked. I should have known he was going to ask, it was bound to come, and of course as the father i should know answers to questions like his. But "how does fire work" is outside my wheelhouse. Fundamentally, i know that there's a chemical reaction, but exactly what happens and how it works was beyond me. So, of course, when Eli asked, i just made some stuff up. Something about heat and the dry wood having molecules and some other stuff. Combustion, elements, heat-creating-heat, energy getting released from the moleculs and some other gibberish that almost/kind of made sense. He bought it. Kind of. "When i get home i'm going to check Wikipedia" he said,as he worked on the marshmallow at the end of the stick.  

As far as i know, the only energy that really got released was imagination and curiousity. Eli was away from the screens, away from the games that he's long since decoded to the point where he's always winning. He was in a place that he didn't fully understand, couldn't game, and it made him wonder. He was asking questions that were tough to answer, but he wasn't giving up.

Thats what nature always does for me, and i was glad to see i've passed on a little curiousity to the next generation. I get energized by learning, and evidently so does he. Nature makes us better. By sparking good questions, by helping us get outside our normal routines, by reminding us we're part of a larger scheme, we get revitalized bit by bit, question by question, spark by spark. 

Levi’s: Brand in Action

The nationwide tour by the jeans and apparel company will visit six cities, beginning Aug. 6th in Portland, Ore. It’s being run to launch the brand’s bike-commuter clothing line for this fall.

via gearjunkie.com

I love what Levi's is doing here with their Bike Shop tour. For a lot of reasons, it's a worthy creative effort. I like the fact that they are really targeted in their audience (urban bike commuters) for their product AND their marketing. I like the way they are actually doing something useful (vs. simple ads) to get their message out. And, i like the execution of the trailer; it's tuned to the style and aesthetics the audience will appreciate.

If You Want to Raise Prices, Tell a Better Story – Ty Montague – Harvard Business Review

Walker's experiment reminds us in a clear and extremely tangible way how the concept of value works in the human brain: a can opener is a can opener is a can opener until it is a can opener designed by Michael Graves and a part of the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. A shoe is a shoe is a shoe until it is a pair of TOMS shoes. For every pair that I buy a child who has never been able to afford shoes gets a free pair as well. Suddenly, these objects are part of an inspiring narrative — one that I can use to reveal something meaningful about myself to others. That's something I am willing to pay for.

via blogs.hbr.org

Great anecdotes from Ty Montague. Read the book "True Story", by the way. It's worth it.