PFB - Five Media Things: Baseball Heats Up and Why Businesses Exist

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Feb 17, 2018
It’s been a frenetic few weeks for me, and I haven’t had time to bang out this column. As spring football hurtles toward its end and baseball really gets cranking, I’m fired up to close out another school year (especially if Mike Boynton is going to keep landing fish). Here is what’s upcoming this week and what I’ve been thinking about and reading in general.

What I’m Excited About

That feeling when you get done with the Masters and look up to see that there are only a couple handfuls of college baseball games left on the schedule.

In a perfect world we would cover baseball like we do football, but the economics of it just don’t make sense. However, I’m thoroughly looking forward to the last month of the regular season and the postseason for a team that all of a sudden finds itself tied for first in the Big 12.

Waking up with a case of the Monday’s
but then
your name atop the Big 12 standings
#GoPokes #okstate

— Cowboy Baseball (@osubaseball) April 16, 2018

OSU baseball this week: April 17 — vs. ORU | April 20-22 — vs. Kansas

A Media Thing I Think I Believe

My wife has sometimes asked me what I would do if somebody came along and offered me $1 billion for PFB. I have thought about this question (because everyone has thought about this question), and my legitimate answer is that I would probably play a lot more golf but that I would also struggle to not continue doing some variation of what I’m doing right now for work.

I thought of this again when I read this excerpt from last week.

Business owners do not normally work for money either. They work for the enjoyment of their competitive skill, in the context of a life where competing skillfully makes sense. The money they earn supports this way of life. The same is true of their businesses. One might think that they view their businesses as nothing more than machines to produce profits, since they do closely monitor their accounts to keep tabs on those profits.

But this way of thinking replaces the point of the machine’s activity with a diagnostic test of how well it is performing. Normally, one senses whether one is performing skillfully. A basketball player does not need to count baskets to know whether the team as a whole is in flow. Saying that the point of business is to produce profit is like saying that the whole point of playing basketball is to make as many baskets as possible. One could make many more baskets by having no opponent.

The game and styles of playing the game are what matter because they produce identities people care about. Likewise, a business develops an identity by providing a product or a service to people. To do that it needs capital, and it needs to make a profit, but no more than it needs to have competent employees or customers or any other thing that enables production to take place. None of this is the goal of the activity. [Kottke]​

That quote is not from Kottke. It’s from a man named Charles Spinosa in a book called Disclosing New Worlds: Entrepreneurship, Democratic Action, and the Cultivation of Solidarity. But either way it resonates with me.

I love writing. I love it more now than I did 10 years ago or even seven years ago when I started this site. I love words, and I love trying to manipulate them to make other people (and myself) feel emotions.

I also love the way news and information functions in a culture and society like ours. The entirety of my profession revolves around trying to get these two things to coexist in a palatable manner. It’s (still) a thrill, and the success of PFB provides a vehicle for this thrill, this work that I am quite grateful for.

What I’m Reading

On my trip to Augusta, I started Artemis and the Emotionally Healthy Leader and finished Pirate Hunters: Treasure, Obsession, and the Search for a Legendary Pirate Ship. I love reading when I travel, but I’ve never really done audiobooks. I checked out (?) Pirate Hunters from the library on audiobook and listened to it on long drives from Atlanta to Augusta and back. I couldn’t get enough! Audiobooks are the greatest thing ever! Welcome to 2004!

But yeah, Pirate Hunters was terrific, Artemis is solid (though not as good as the Martian) and the Emotionally Healthy Leader is convicting and challenging.

Contribution And Site Updates

We are at 320 contributors. That’s awesome. I’m looking forward to even more of you joining in the future.

Site Growth

Pageviews through April 15, 2018: 3.7M
Pageviews through April 15, 2017: 4.4M
Most popular post of April: Gundy goes shirtless in OU tribute video
Most popular post of 2018: Spencer out as DC

Website Refresh Update

We have made progress here. Our developer has started reconstruction on a new site, and we are starting to put the pieces into place. I’m fired up for something that 1. works better than this one has been working, 2. sorts and distributes #content in a way that makes more sense and 3. has a few additional features that folks have asked for.

The post Five Media Things: Baseball Heats Up and Why Businesses Exist appeared first on Pistols Firing.

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