Contact: (415) 350-8104

3/5 Salon + News: NextNow 3/14 + “Organs-On-Chips” + Barcelona Salon visitors + Millennium Project + More

You’re invited to the FocusCatalyst Brainstorming Salon 

March 5th, 2015

Note: You do not have to read this whole long email. Ever.

(See the fine print below if you want to know why.) All you really ever need to know is: Drop by any time between 5-8pm at 695 5th St. #2, San Francisco. For details like directions, what food & drink to bring, etc.,scroll past the full News & Announcement section below the summary.

The Salons have been every first Thursday of every month since February 2004.

SUMMARY

MARCH 2015

NEWS & ANNOUNCEMENTS

(Scroll down for the full News & Announcements below this summary.)

1.  Bill Daul & Jim(Sky)Schuyler:

Invitation to 3/14 NextNow Networks Afternoon

2.  Geraldine Hamilton:

Emulate’s amazing “Organs-On-Chips” platform

3.  Doug Engelbart Event:

4/1 & 4/2, Stanford, celebrating Doug’s “Mother of All Demos”

4.  Jerry Glenn:

Millennium Project’s #6 place world ranking

5.  Valerie Landau:

Bringing Barcelona creative lab, Domestic Data Streamers, to Salon

6.  Chip Conley:

Fast Company article about Chip’s Airbnb and FEST300 work

7.  Examples of the:

Salon’s “Interesting people, interesting conversations” 

8.  Alan Abrams’

Alan’s Wine Cellar Wine Tasting Notes for the March 2015 Salon

Feel free to forward this invite to anyone you think would enjoy the Salon.  If you’d like to be on the list to receive invites, email me at bb@focuscatalyst.com. Thanks!

The fine print:  For more details than you’ll ever need (plus who comes to the Salons and lots of comments about them) just keep on scrolling.  All the details are just here for folks who like ’em.  (You know who you are…)  Also, the Salon is not a “networking” group or a place to promote products or services or to look for a job.

NOTE: All the people/places/things in the News & Announcement section are from/about my own personal friends and connections.  (The rule is pretty much if you need to ask to be in the Salon invite you likely won’t be. I end up being the one to ask friends if I can put info about them or their companies in it, not the other way around.)

I’ve only emailed this list with one invite and one reminder a month ever since the Salon started in 2004. So you won’t be getting a flood of emails.   And, if you don’t live in the SF Bay Area you can still participate.  See below for details.

Also, why is this email invitation so, um, ugly?  Well…it’s a qualifier because the Salon is in my home. And I’m only looking for folks to come to it who are interested in interesting conversation with interesting people. If you take a look at this very plain Jane (um, ugly…) email and get excited about the descriptions of who comes to it and how it works (and you don’t care that it’s free of snazzy graphics :), then the Salon’s for you!

MARCH 2015

NEWS & ANNOUNCEMENTS

1.  3/14/15,1-5PM, SF: You’re invited to the 1st of 3 NextNow Network afternoons

of interesting people, interesting conversations with the NextNow Network on March 14, April 18, and May 16.

The Salon is where NextNow folks get together most regularly so if you like the Salon, you’ll enjoy these afternoons!  (For more info about NextNow, scroll down this invite.)

Each afternoon we’ll have a light lunch starting@12PM and wine@4PM. $40 each. Scholarships available. All will be at NextSpace, a coworking space in downtown SF with easy access from around the Bay Area. To register, go to Eventbrite here.  To view the full invitation with details about the speakers, go to http://red7.com/nextnow

ABOUT THE NEXTNOW NETWORK AFTERNOONS 

The NextNow Network brings together smart, interesting people from a wide array of fields in what NextNow co-founder, Bill Daul, describes as a “super-collider for people–a fusion reaction where you get more energy out of it than you put in.”

Our friend Doug Engelbart,* was a member of NextNow from the beginning and he continues to inspire us today. Doug was one of the leading thinkers of the 20th Century and he challenged the world not only to improve collective performance, but to seek to improve the improvement process itself. That continues to be a core theme for NextNow.

We’ve designed each NextNow Network afternoon so it’s easy and fun for us all to get to know one another, inspire each other and make great connections. We’ll be using a similar format NextNow used when it started in the early 2000’s–one that helped many of us create a lot of the close professional and personal friendships we still have to this day.

To get the conversations and connections started, each afternoon will feature three 10-minute talks on three wide-ranging topics. Each talk will be alternated with time for us to get to know each other, inspire each other and make great connections.

The speakers for March 14th are: 

Gayle Karen Young 

Chief Talent and Culture Officer, Wikimedia Foundation 

Speaking on “Being a Chief Culture Officer”

Valerie Landau

Co-author: “The Engelbart Hypothesis: Dialogs with Douglas Engelbart” Director of Assessment at Samuel Merritt University

Valerie has extensive knowledge of Cuba and lived there in her youth

Speaking on “The Cuban Paradox”

Sam Hahn 

VP of Engineering at eGain Communications

Co-Author: “Leading & Managing in Silicon Valley”

Speaking on “Three Engelbart Ideas”

This meeting is sponsored by Red7 and the NextNow Collaboratory.  For detailed speaker bios, as well as links to Doug Engelbart’s work, go here.

We hope you can join us! To register for one or more of these afternoons, just go to Eventbrite here. Advanced registration is required so we can plan the food and have enough seats! For a scholarship, please click “Contact the organizer” on the Eventbrite page.

To view the full invitation and details about the speakers online, go here.

2.  Thanks to my friend Yrmis Barroeta, co-founder of the wonderful Berkeley restaurant, Mission Heirloom, I recently had brunch with Yrmis and her friend, Geraldine Hamilton.

Geraldine is the President and Chief Scientific Officer of Emulate

It was beyond fascinating to learn about Emulate from Geraldine! I highly, highly recommend you watch her wonderful TEDxBoston Talk here.  It’s so powerful, TED editors ran it on their home page.

Below are excerpts about Emulate from its site.  Truly amazing!

“We’re creating a new living platform to emulate human biology.

Emulate launches to commercialize automated human Organs-on-Chips platform to accelerate drug development, detect toxicities and advance personalized medicine.

Company founded by Organs-on-Chips pioneers; secures $12 million in Series A financing to develop innovative products that emulate human physiology.

[Emulate’s] advanced technology is the beginning of a revolution in the way we study human biology and disease, as Emulate sets a new standard for products to be aligned with a complete picture of human biology,” said Geraldine A. Hamilton, Ph.D.

The company’s founding team carried out their ground-breaking foundational research, engineering and technology translation at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University.

Emulate’s Organs-on-Chips allow living human cells to interact with other cell types within the authentic physical context of living tissues and organs as they would normally in the human body.

This ability to bioemulate the human organ microenvironment through microengineering – combined with automated instrumentation that permits molecular scale analysis in real-time – allows us to replicate, analyze and predict human responses in a truly unique and powerful way.

Human Organs-on-Chips are miniaturized devices created with microchip manufacturing that contain tiny hollow channels lined by living human cells and tissues cultured under continuous fluid flow and mechanical forcing regimens, such as cyclic breathing and peristalsis, which effectively recapitulate organ-level physiology and disease responses.

In Emulate’s automated platform, different Organs-on-Chips, such as lung, liver, intestine, kidney, skin, eye, and blood-brain-barrier, can be linked together by flowing liquid containing living human immune cells that simulates blood to form a “Human-Body-on-Chips” to more closely replicate whole body-level responses.

About Emulate:  Emulate, Inc. is a private company focused on commercializing Organs-on-Chips as an automated human bioemulation platform that achieves a new standard for mimicking true human physiology so that responses to medicines, chemicals and diseases can be accurately predicted. Through co-innovation with collaborators and internal programs, Emulate is advancing product innovation, design and safety across a range of applications in drug development, personalized medicine, agriculture and chemical-based consumer products. For more information, visit www.emulatebio.com.”

3. 4/1-2 @ Stanford: A two-day celebration of Doug Engelbart.  And a conversation with Jaron Lanier and Sebastian Thrun.

As many of you know (and per #1 above), Doug Engelbart was a fellow member of NextNow.  This event at Stanford celebrates Doug’s “The Mother of All Demos” in a very unique way.  (If you’ve never watched The Mother of All Demos on YouTube you must–you will be blown away.)

This April event also includes a conversation between Jaron Lanier and Sebastian Thrun.  I’ve known Jaron for over 35 years, all the way back to when he rented the cottage behind my Palo Alto house for 2 years!

About the event:

On April 1 and 2, Stanford Live presents the world premiere of The Demo, a multimedia performance piece based on the historic 1968 demonstration of early personal-computing technology by the Stanford Research Institute’s Douglas Engelbart, which among other things introduced videoconferencing, networked collaboration and a little device called the mouse. 

Created and performed by composers Mikel Rouse and Ben Neill, the piece uses music, light and sometimes hallucinatory video projections to re-create Engelbart’s mind-bending demo and the Bay Area gestalt of the 1960s, and to reflect on how those now-ubiquitous technologies have developed and been put to use in ways he may not have envisioned or particularly liked.

A highlight will be a public conversation on April 2 at Bing with the celebrated technology

writer Jaron Lanier, known for his humanistic vision, who will engage in what should be a lively discussion with Sebastian Thrun, the Stanford research professor and former Google-meister who founded the firm’s Google X, which brought forth the self-driving car and Google Glass.”

4.  This in from Jerry Glenn, CEO of The Millennium Project Think Tank:

“On January 22, 2015, the University of Pennsylvania released its “Go To Think Tank” Index Report (see page 20).

The Millennium Project maintained its 6th place world ranking for “Best New Idea or Paradigm Developed by a Think Tank.”  Here’s the top ten list:

1. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (United States)

2. Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE) (United States)

3. Chatham House (United Kingdom)

4. BRICS Policy Center (Brazil)

5. Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) (United States)

6. Millennium Project (United States)

7. Third Way (United States)

8. Fraser Institute (Canada)

9. Brookings Institution (United States)

10. European Policy Centre (EPC) (Belgium)

 Also, Jerry added in another note:

The World Economic Forum has created a new global futures group and published series statements from each member. As one of the members, I wrote short personal statement, The Age of Conscious-Technology.

5.  Salon regular, Valerie Landau, is bringing the co-founders of Domestic Data Streamers, a Barcelona based creative lab, to the Salon next week.

Their work looks fascinating.  I’m sure a lot of Salon folks will love to meet them.

For an impressive list of their installations, awards & grants, talks/lectures/workshops, and press, go here.

And here’s an excerpt about them from Adobe’s Behance blog: 

“Domestic Data Streamers’ projects include various forms of data visualizationart installationssculptures, and even handmade cards. We spoke with them about their project “Voting System Behance Reviews,” a voting system that allowed attendees at their Behance Review to visualize the popularity of projects they voted for.” 

6.  I’ve known Chip Conley since we went to a conference outside Vienna in 2006 called The Waldzell Meeting that was chaired by our friend Alan Webber–co-founder of Fast Company magazine (and candidate for Governor of New Mexico in 2014).

Fast Company did a recent great article about Chip and his FEST 300 that I wanted to share with you. Here are some excerpts:

WHY AIRBNB’S INNOVATION GURU IS BUILDING AN EXPEDIA FOR FESTIVALS

HOSPITALITY LEGEND CHIP CONLEY REALLY LOVES FESTIVALS. 

AND HE THINKS HIS YEAR-OLD STARTUP CAN HELP PEOPLE DISCOVER THAT LOVE TOO.

“Hospitality legend Chip Conley is best known for starting the Joie de Vivre hotel chain and for, more recently, being Airbnb’s head of global hospitality and strategy

But his day job isn’t the only thing Conley is passionate about. He has a side gig running Fest300,

a site dedicated to curating the world’s best festivals, and creating a new kind of travel guide in the process.  “We’re creating a movement here,” Conley says, “the idea that people make a pledge to go to one festival a year as a means of becoming more culturally curious.”

Fest300, which, as the name implies, spotlights 300 festivals a year, connects with Conley’s passion for “cultural curiosity” and “collective joy.”  Thirty of the events on the list were crowdsourced from 50,000 of the site’s users, and the rest were selected by Conley and his team. 

“Experiential-driven travel is the fastest-growing component of travel, and we need a website that’s a world authority.”

While it’s unclear how exactly Fest300 plans to make money (and in an interview with Forbes, Conley didn’t discount the idea of Airbnb collaborations), they have positioned themselves in a unique space: Promoting hundreds of hand-picked events globally, many with extremely limited web presences, to an audience with money to burn. It provides numerous monetization opportunities in the future; in the meantime, Conley continues to underwrite the site.”

7.  For folks new to the Salon invite:  

For a taste of just what the Salon descriptor, “Interesting People. Interesting Conversation,” can mean, below is a wildly divergent list of topics one Salon attendee sent me the day after a Salon: 

“I had a great time at your salon. In a trip down memory lane, I recall conversations about:

·         Categorical and topographical mapping

·         London, Tokyo, Bay Area underground systems

·         Harry Beck  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Beck

·         Edinburghians vs. Glaswegians

·         Blind Man’s Bluff http://tiny.cc/Wlz9G

·         Scuba driving

·         Bali

·         Web site design for the challenged

·         GoDaddy

·         Hogmanay

·         Wine tasting and hosting events

·         Bill & Melinda Gates and Hewlett Foundations

·         Hippocampus.org

·         Learning Chinese and ballroom dancing deep in China

·         Air pollution in Shanghai and Hong Kong

·         Colorforms  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colorforms

Alan’s Wine Cellar Wines at the Salon: Tasting Notes 

Background: As many of you know, Alan is the husband of FocusCatalyst Advisory Board member and Dwell Media CEO. Michela O’Connor Abrams.  Alan is a real expert on wine and folks who come to the Salon love finding out more about it by chatting with him. Alan’s Wine Cellar does wine tastings (including charity fundraising ones), wine cellar design, wine courses, cellar stocking and wine search.

Below are Alan’s tasting notes for the March 5th Salon

As always come early if you want to taste these. They can go fast! 

Special Note:  

The last one below, Halleck “3 Sons Cuvee” pinot, is from a friend of mine’s winery. (And the mother of the 3 sons!)  Really wonderful wine!

Campagnola

Pinot Grigio

Vintage: 2012

Varietal:  100% Pinot Gris

Origin:  The Veneto region of Italy (near Venice)

Reviews

Wine Library: “Incredible for the money!  Clean, crisp and refreshing, this is an excellent value and a must try for anyone who loves Pinot Grigio.  The soft citrus flavors and the creamy long finish make this our top choice for under $10 P.G.”

TheWineCountry.com: If you’re looking for a wine to bring to an outdoor party this is the one; pure expression of fruit and what a value wine should be.

Tasting Notes

“Light straw color.  Fine, elegant, clean and intense aroma, dry flavor with pleasant green apple aftertaste.  Lively, and easy to drink.”

Production notes:  fermented and finished in stainless steel (no oak)

Alan’s Tasting Notes

Truthfully, many of the Pinot Grigios imported into the U.S. have about as much taste as glass of water.  This wonderful Pinot Grigio is dry, but still delivers a wonderful, crisp fruitiness.  Perfect with salads, chicken or fish dishes, and many lighter Italian foods.  It’s also wonderful all by itself.

Spy Valley

Sauvignon blanc

Vintage: 2012

Varietal:  100% Sauvignon blanc

Origin:  Spy Valley is a small New Zealand estate sourcing grapes from the sunny southern side of Marlborough’s Wairau & Waihopai Valleys.

New Zealand makes some of the best Sauvignon blanc in the world.  Marlborough, on the south island, is the most famous wine region.

Review

Wine Spectator – 88 points “The succulent green apple, passion fruit and lime peel flavors are showcased here, with mineral and floral details matched to a light and extremely refreshing body.”

 Winemaker’s Notes

Bouquet: Classic Marlborough aromas of grapefruit, elderflower and a fusion of tropical fruits”
Palate: Crisp and fine with a silken mouthfeel. Pure fruit flavours that persist through to a dry finish.”

Halleck “3 Sons Cuvee”

Pinot noir

Vintage: 2008

Origin:  Russian River Valley

Vineyards: “Three Sons Cuvee” represents a blend of the best Russian River fruit from two boutique vineyards in Sebastopol: The Farm and Hallberg Vineyards.

Cases Produced:           800 cases

Production Notes

  • Grapes picked at night, hand sorted and de-stemmed.
  • 9 months in 100% French oak barrels

Winemaker’s Notes

“This is a very well structured wine, a perfect blend of earth and fruit flavors.  Deeply cherry notes lead, optimally ripened and decked-out with complementary oak. Mid palate expresses with cinnamon and cloves with fine tannins and hints of forest floor. It ends with black pepper spice and a long silky lingering finish.”

* A NOTE ABOUT NEXTNOW (and Doug Engelbart**)   

A lot of people who come to the Salon are in a group I’ve been involved with pretty much since its inception in 2003, NextNow. It’s a small, relatively loose affiliation of interesting folks started by Bill Daul, who Doug Engelbart (fellow NextNower and who in the 1960’s was the inventor of the mouse and a whole lot of personal computing in general–see Wikipedia.  Sadly, Doug died on July 2, 2013) calls “human glue” and James Burke (from the UK, known for the TV series “Connections”), calls “the world’s greatest social networker.” NextNow members include Buckminster Fuller’s archivist and the CTO for the Dalai Lama, among a lot of other very interesting folks.

The FocusCatalyst Brainstorming Salon is where NextNowers get together most regularly. But the Salon is not a NextNow function per se and you sure don’t have to be in NextNow to come to the Salon!

SALON INFO:

WHAT:  Interesting people. Interesting conversation. Bring food and drink to share.  

[Note to all you cooks out there: Please do not bring items that need heating up in a microwave, stove or oven. Also, bags and boxes are just fine to serve what you bring. But if you feel you need a serving dish, please bring one and take it home afterwards. Many thanks!] 

Optional: Write what you want brainstormed on the sheets provided. Put them on the wall. Others add their ideas with Post It notes. Then you take your sheet home with new ideas and contacts.  (But also, you don’t have to have anything you want brainstormed or put any sheets on the wall to participate and have a great time)

This isn’t a meeting or a place to sell your services or products.  It’s an informal, fun, and relaxed get together.

The end game isn’t even brainstorming as much as it is “interesting people/interesting conversation.”  To tell you the truth, most people get too involved in conversation to write on people’s brainstorming sheets–but that’s the point. The brainstorming technique works as a catalyst to help move the conversations beyond just the usual “Hi, how are you?  What do you do?”

WHEN:  First Thursday every month.

Drop by any time between 5 and 8PM for as long, or as short, a time as you’d like.

WHERE:  San Francisco: 695 5th St. #2 (5th & Townsend).

 Alas, parking meters have finally arrived in my neighborhood. The good news is there’s now more parking available.  But please note: they can sometimes be in effect until 10pm.  So make sure you check all that out if you use them.   They do take take credit cards.

There’s also a parking garage a block away, underneath the Safeway at 4th & Townsend.  You enter the garage on Townsend, between 4th & 3rd Streets.  You can get 90 minutes of free parking there if you spend at least $5 at Safeway. (But if you stay longer than 90 minutes it can cost you up to $30.)

Note to Peninsula Folks:  My loft is one block from the CalTrain Station.  So, very easy access by train.  Bill Daul comes to virtually every Salon via the train from Palo Alto. If you’d like to join him, just let me know at bb@focuscatalyst.com.

Note to East Bay Folks:  It’s easy to take the MUNI light rail at the Embarcadero station (located a level up from the BART Embarcadero station)  to the Caltrain station.  (Take the MUNI light rail trains to “Caltrain/Ball Park” or “Sunnydale”.  Both will get you there.) My loft is a block from the Caltrain station.

HOW MUCH?  Just drop on by. No need to RSVP. And feel free to forward this email to anyone you think might enjoy the Salon.  This invite is in Constant Contact so you can forward it with the link at the end.

Scroll down for comments from Brainstorming Salon attendees.

One comment that’s been made by a lot of the Brainstorming Salon first timers is how easy it is to participate even if you don’t know anyone there. You can start by reading the brainstorming requests on the wall and from there it’s easy to strike up a conversation with the person next to you reading the same request.

Other comments:

“Your salons offer another benefit besides brainstorming and snacking: they’re a place to practice the (almost) lost art of conversation. Madame de Stael, who ran a famous salon in 18th century Paris (and who said, “Wit lies in recognizing the resemblance among things which differ and the difference between things which are alike”) would approve.”

“Thank you so much for inviting me to the salon. It truly was like the old salons of Europe with smart, interesting people and a lively exchange of ideas.” 

“At the salon I talked to so many diverse and all fascinating people from different professions with different perspectives but I think what really “makes” the Brainstorming Salon is the warmth and openness among everyone because after all we’re all FOB (friends of Betsy).”

“I developed some alliances and client relationships in a natural way just through conversation. There is a great flow of energy at these salons! “

“I really enjoyed your brainstorming event last week. What a wonderful group of fascinating people!

“What a wonderful evening! The brainstorming salon was interesting, dynamic, and loads of fun. Not only did I enjoy meeting a number of bright, fascinating men and women, but it inspired me in new directions.” 

“Bravo! You are one creative individual. I look forward to the next Thursday salon at your loft. Thank you, thank you.”

“I had so much fun and met such interesting people. Thank you!”

“Great Salon party. I enjoyed myself immensely. 

“I LOVE these events. Even in the short time I was there, I connected with so many great people. There are starting to be “regulars” which is great since there is never enough time to get to know all the people at one event.”

“I had a terrific time at yesterday’s Brainstorming Salon. Thanks so much for hosting it. What an interesting group of people. So many good conversations. And then the serendipity of seeing Beatrice Wood’s ‘I Shock Myself’ and Christine Walker’s ‘A Painter’s Garden’ on your coffee table. Downright spooky.”

“Hey, last night’s Salon was just great! Both Mike and I enjoyed ourselves thoroughly and got some good ideas. We were so jazzed that we went out for a “bar dinner” at Absinthe. We talked and talked about everyone we had met at the Salon and how energized we were. Thanks so much for inviting us.”

“Great gathering last night. I really enjoyed it. And I love your swingin’ bachelorette pad, it’s the perfect party palace.”

“That was a blast.  Wonderful people.”

 “It was terrific and I had a splendid time.”

“Thursday’s Brainstorming Salon was a hit! I really appreciate you opening your home and ideas to so many of us. I look forward to the next one!”

“Having the chance to get objective input from people of this caliber is wonderful.”

“Looking at the brainstorming requests is good way of ‘meeting’ people in a way that is beyond the first introductions social interaction.”

“I felt energized by the level of intelligence and curiosity of the people there.”

“I really enjoyed the people and ambiance.”

“I couldn’t tear myself away from the conversations.”

“I always feel energized and empowered after spending time with you. Thanks so much. I look forward to the next one!”

“I thought it was wonderful to meet interesting, witty people and to talk on a range of subjects. The most complimentary way to show my appreciation is to say, ‘I look forward to the next meeting.'”

“I had a great time. Just being around persons from different walks of professional life rubs off on us, and we take what we want from that. It is invaluable! Thanks for including me.”

“I loved it.”

More Information About FocusCatalyst Brainstorming Salons

I’m not a big fan of linking to web sites or attachments. I’d rather scroll than link. So, scroll below for more information about the FocusCatalyst Brainstorming Salons for any of you who’d like a lot of details.

For those of you who haven’t seen this invitation before, you may be asking yourself, “What in the world is a brainstorming salon?”

A brainstorming salon is an informal, drop in get together of interesting folks at my loft in San Francisco, South of Market. Come by for as long or as short a time as you’d like.

It’s a salon because it’s meant to foster some interesting conversation.

And it’s for brainstorming, too. But the brainstorming is totally optional and in many ways quite unobtrusive.

I love brainstorming with folks. It opens up whole new ideas. I love the infusion of creativity and solutions that a good brainstorming session can give. But I don’t want to require everyone to show up at a specific time, sit in a circle and brainstorm and then all go home at the same time

So here’s how it works:

Everyone who wants to (and you can certainly come to the Salon and not participate in the brainstorming part at all) when they arrive at the salon, takes a sheet of paper and writes on it something you’d like others to brainstorm about for you.

It can be on any topic and you can ask for any kind of feedback you’d like.  You can do it anonymously or you can sign their name to it. Then you put your sheet on a wall in my loft.

Everyone else at the salon can then look at your sheet and if they have a brainstorm idea for you, they can write it on a Post It note and put it on your sheet. Those Post It ideas can be anonymous, too. Or not. It’s up to you.

When you’re ready to leave, after 15 minutes or after 3 hours or any time in between, just take your sheet home with the Post It ideas people have put on it.

You’ll probably also have fun brainstorming ideas for others. And you may meet other folks dealing with similar situations to yours.

Another feature of the Salon is the big round table in the middle of it piled high with books, many written by friends of mine, including many by Salon regulars, and others that are just books I love.  It’s an eclectic assortment on a wide variety of topics. Often people connect over the books, too.

And, for those of you who can’t come at all but would like your Brainstorming Sheet on the wall, just send me an email with what you’d like folks to brainstorm about for you, ideas, suggestions, leads, anything, and I’ll put it up on the wall and mail it to you afterwards. I can keep it anonymous or not. Your choice.

Please bring something to eat and drink to share. And the Salons also feature Alan’s Wine Cellar wines for tasting, for drinking, for enjoying!  

 Alan and his wife Michela are old friends of mine. (They even got me going to the Napa Valley Wine Auction for years.) Michela is on FocusCatalyst’s Advisory Board and she’s the president and publisher of Dwell Magazine. (Great magazine.)

Alan has been involved with the wine industry since 1984 when he began advertising and marketing major wine brands. Since then he has become an avid wine collector. He does fabulous wine tasting parties for corporations, for charity fundraising, and in people’s homes, as a great way to learn about really interesting and inexpensive wines from around the world. And it’s also a very fun party. He also teaches an in depth wine tasting course and provides cellar stocking advice. On top of all that, he designs gorgeous wine cellars.

Hope you can make it.  If you think you might be able to, you can shoot me an email and let me know. Though really, just come on by.  No need to RSVP.  Even if you won’t know until the last minute if you can come, it’s fine for you to come on by anyway.

Betsy