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The Experts' Guide to 100 Things Everyone Should Know How to Do Hardcover – Deckle Edge, September 21, 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
When it comes to changing a tire, scrambling eggs, telling a joke or doing laundry, Ettus is no expert. (Shes just the president of a brand-management firm.) But for this guide, she tracked down people who are, and asked their advice on everyday tasks. So former White House social secretary Letitia Baldrige explains how to shake hands; make-up guru Bobbi Brown teaches how to apply lipstick; New York Times Company chairman Arthur Sulzberger Jr. gives tips on reading a newspaper; and three-time U.S. Open winner Jennifer Capriati instructs readers on hitting a tennis ball. For better or for worse, Ettus seems to have allowed each contributor to insert some personality into his or her offering. Accordingly, the explanation on how to make a bed, from Tracey R. Henderson, the Holiday Inn Select Executive Housekeeper of the Year 2003, ends with a hokey "Show someone else the job youve done so that they can pat you on the back," while the lesson on tying a bow tie, from Tucker Carlson, co-host of CNNs Crossfire and an avid bow tie enthusiast, concludes, "Consider whether you really want to do this.... When you wear a bow tie, people will make assumptions about you." The result is a guide thats alternately lighthearted and serious, a coffee-table book of the most practical sort. 30 line drawings.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Let's face it: most of us are never going to be in a position to get advice from Arthur Sulzberger, Bob Vila, Donald Trump, Larry King, Howie Mandel, and Suze Orman, now are we? That's why we need this book. These experts and 94 more show you how to read a newspaper (New York Times publisher Sulzberger), tell a joke (comedian Mandel), save money (financial guru Orman), and, well, pretty much anything else you can think of. Not sure how to tie your necktie? It's in here. Can't quite get the hang of just hanging out? Dr. Dean Ornish has some advice on relaxing. Some of the advice here is practical (making a bed, ironing a shirt, doing laundry), and some of it is of a more abstract nature (delivering bad news, making an educated guess, remembering names). The authors call the book "Cliff Notes to life," and that about sums it up. It's more fun than Cliff Notes, though. David Pitt
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Top customer reviews
The author's approach reminded me of "mindfulness," a practice that to which I recently became acquainted. In order to develop a calm awareness of one's body feelings and consciousness, it is useful to practice certain exercises such as awareness of our thoughts while we are doing all sorts of tasks. The subject matter experts featured in this book appear to have done that at least with respect to their areas of expertise.
I learned from this book even though it didn't come easily or quickly. For example, an expert on hair and hair products explained how to shampoo one's hair. One should use only a little shampoo, mix it around in one's hands and only then apply it to the hair. One should not work the shampoo too hard into one's hair or especially the scalp, and it's good to quickly rinse it out. Another example is shaking hands when greeting somebody. The idea of a handshake and what it entails is connected to exactly what happens in an optimal handshake. Other subject areas are more general, such as how to negotiate a deal. There's no expectation of being perfect, just to strive for something better and to concentrate on what we're doing with purposefulness.
The Expert's Guide to 100 Things Everyone Should Know How to Do is divided into the following parts: Morning Life; Work Life; Home Life; Weekend Life and The Big Life (everything else). Most of these things are routine. Most of us have done most of these things. But probably we haven't done any of them to the level of the experts that provided the advice. It makes sense to listen to experts explain how to do the basic things in which their success has earned them high status.
I'll use a lot of advice in this book but not all. For example, I won't try to perfect the art of making a great Martini. The point is that everything is done somewhere by somebody at a world class level, and we can achieve a higher level of attention to what we're actually doing by putting to practice methods outlined in this book.