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Home > Blog > The Search for Meaning. . .
Out of Our Minds
Monday, August 29, 2005 8:11 AM
The Search for Meaning. . .
Anita Sharpe on Culture

is everywhere, even at Barneys New York. Julie Gilhart, fashion director for the tony clothing retailer, compares her desire for meaningful clothing (which essentially means apparel created by neighborhood designers) to Leonardo DiCaprio's choice of a car. 'He can buy any car he wants,' Gilhart says in a New York Times story,'but he may choose to buy a hybrid for what it stands for.'

'I want something that stands for something more than a lot of marketing,' Gilhart says. 'It has to have more depth to it. It has to have some meaning.'


5 comments

gulliver - 9/1/2005 11:10:51 AM
>...purpose and passion on the same plane as profit

That's probably the central issue and why Sam, like I, 'struggles' with some of the stuff here.

Doesn't truly-madly-deeply 'engaged' activity demand a 'to hell with the money, we'll do it anyway' mindset?

And, as long as money is a main issue (don't get me wrong - it has to be in a commercial enterprise... ['Profit is fine - a sign that the customer honors the value of what we do'] but to me it should be 'a' not 'the' reason) there'll always be an eye toward delivering what's expected. And, that'll often displease some of us 'harder' types.

Encouraged by the promise of Worthwhile, I'm thus-far disappointed by the execution. I haven't seen hardcopy since issue one (can it be that difficult to serve the UK? - no, of course not) so base my view on the site.

That I find it a bit sappy isn't the issue - are the low comment counts an accurate reflection of interest and is the print mag suffering the fate of many other 'not quite interesting enough' publications?

Whatever, nobody makes me read it and my critique is constructive... 'I wish it were better'.
sam - 8/29/2005 2:33:27 PM
Although some of my comments are made in jest, I do think we need to curb the addiction we have to celebrity watching. I never said don’t pay them any attention etc. and ignore them completely. My thought is that worthwhile is a respected mag, with the likes of WSJ, NPR and the times, in my view.. As I stated in another blog, I love how Peter Jennings stated that he deplored the fact that they had to cover the celebrity garbage and if you want one readers perspective it depends where you want to fall among these readers values.

WSJ, the times, the daily news, the star, the enquirer, the economist, fast company, of course there are hundreds of levels of journalism. Either way I feel it deteriorates your brand and whether or not you care is not the matter. If I am a NPR, history channel, elitist snob, then so be it…although I don’t read playboy at all or watch much history channel, I do enjoy NPR and they do not cover celebrity gossip and I enjoy that fact. If I need a does of gossip I turn on Stern and that is fine. Worthwhile is in the stages of identifying its brand. I guarantee will detriotate your brand if you continue to talk about, compare or call out any celebrity related junk in your jouranlisic coverate of the workplace. If this is the mission statement, then I am missing where celeb comparisons fit in…, my opinion is they don’t. thank you for the healthy conversation about worthwhile’s future.

The editorial mission of WORTHWHILE is to put purpose and passion on the same plane as profit. WORTHWHILE offers a roadmap for business success that is more personally fulfilling and socially responsible. We live by the motto that it is impossible to have a meaningful life without meaningful work.
We hope that this site can be a place where you'll come to discuss, to learn, to share your experiences, to find solutions in your worklife.
Frank - 8/29/2005 12:25:51 PM
I agree with Curt. I don't read celebrity rags, but celebrities set trends and if we are ever going to be a society of hybrid-car drivers, the trendsetters will pave the way.

One other comment: those who argue for ignoring celebrities on principle strikes me the same way as people who claim they read Playboy for the articles, only watch the History Channel on TV or listen to NPR on the radio. It's a bit elitist (and, for my taste, boring.)
Curt Rosengren - 8/29/2005 11:32:27 AM
Sam, while I too find our cultural fascination with celibrities mystifying, I wouldn't call something slop merely because it references them.

Like it or not (and personally I don't much care for it), celebrities are an important part of the American culture. As I see it, including them in the discussion is relevant because a) celebrities set trends and b) celebrities reflect trends.

In this case, the reason I find it interesting what DiCaprio drives isn't because I think his celebrity status makes anything he does or says worthy of attention. I think it's interesting because of what it reflects of the larger trend. And because the message he (or any celebrity who gets a great deal of media exposure) can telegraph simply in the choice of his vehicle will, in fact, have an influence on some people's thinking, which in turn contributes to the trend.
sam - 8/29/2005 11:08:33 AM
Why the constant references to celebrities? i just don't understand, please help me get it because I don't. Why are we constantly calling out or comparing ourselves to celebrities? I could give a flying leap about what Leonardo drives, wants to drive or wants to drive to make an impression because he has lots of money and supposedly power and influence? The fact that designers are local to the neighborhood is referenced back to Leo’s choice of a car? Come on…is this an MTV bog or a blog of intelligent, reasonable professionals. If I want slop, there is plenty of it….keep up the good work, just be careful with the slop.

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