Woke up in Paris after a great Saturday doing not much of anything that was really work beyond email and some thinking about the next few weeks ahead. I shared some thought on my Paris Saturday over on WineScene.
My morning started with news that rocked my world. One in a great way, the other with a touch of sadness. The great news is that pal Joanna Stern, most recently of The Verge is on her way to ABC as Technology Editor. Huge news. Many will recall how Joanna and I had a voice call on GoGo with her on the plan when they said it couldn't be done. It garnered press coverage from many outlets including USA Today...HA!
Then the sad news hit, found from Joanna's Twitter feed. Whitney Houston had died. A few weeks ago it was Etta James, who if you don't know her music, you're missing out on the woman may have been the living version of Janis Joplin-both in lifestyle and soulful, stomach belting R & B. I won't get into the speculation as to why, but over time Whitney was without a doubt a musical talent who came from the Gospel church chiors all the way to the pop mainstream. She was a chanteusse, model, actress, but above all she was a performer who turned heads, made you look up and listen. Her style was souful, and yet she could be a pop diva. The world is losing our idols with too much frequency these day. The lifetyle of the world is of pop rock and sports, brought on by endless pressures to perform, to be better the next time out than the last time and most of all to see the kind of burn out/flame outs we're seeing are not ending here. Michael Jackson, Elvis, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison (who is buried just up the hill here in Paris) Janis Joplin and how many others all died too young. Somewhere there's a chior up in heaven. Janis and Etta got a new singing partner yesterday, but for those of us who have either lived in or around the worlds of sports and entertainment, and now technology with gamers and so called "rock star" programmers, we're going to see these "before their time" departures happen in technology too. It doesn't matter that the past few years of Whitney's career were wrought with the downers and troubles. All those people who she was employing should have known better.
Lesson to be learned. Look after those who look after you.
I'm off to lunch with colleagues and friends here in Paris...a glass of wine is in order. A toast to Joanna and a moment of silence with Whitney.