Rita Levi-Montalcini “What you do you should do well”

Q: So I am also wondering what advice would you give young people now. Many young people are not interested in science, and it’s a very exciting time, as you mentioned.

142-92-rita-levi

Levi-Montalcini: I’d say, as I always say, that nothing is beautiful as to work on something scientific or social, to be very invested in what you do. I mean, not [to] be afraid, but knowing that you never will go ahead if you don’t do it very seriously and then, as you say, the important [thing] is to be very engaged. What you do you should do well. I will say that it is not as important as scientific or social [work] because I’m also working on social problems, as you know, in Africa. So it is important to know what it is important in life, not just only very simple and stupid things, like being beautiful and successful, this is nonsense.

I always say so, and I have many followers you know. I work here, and I am delighted because excellent people work here, Antonino Cattaneo, Pietro Calissano, I mean, many people, not too many, but some people still understand the importance of being invested in important problems, not in futility.

Source :

https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/full/10.1146/annurev-physiol-021909-135857

Rita Levi-Montalcini won the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1986 with Stanley Cohen, decades after her groundbreaking work in Italy and the United States. The theory she developed was quite elegant and simple. Competition of nerve cells early in development for limited amounts of growth factors produces winners and losers. The winners are nerve cells that made the correct connections with their targets, and the losers undergo death, which explains the massive amount of programmed cell death that occurs in the peripheral nervous system.

Salvador Dali:”chastity represents the force of spirit”

WALLACE: Chastity is one of the most powerful symbols of modern times?

salvador-dali

DALI: In my opinion it is the more… urgent and the more dramatic because the chastity represents the force of spirit…. chaste in any religion, you know because of promiscuity, the people make love, there is no more the spiritual strength, no more the spiritual thoughts.

Source: http://www.hrc.utexas.edu/multimedia/video/2008/wallace/dali_salvador_t.html

Anthony Bourdain:”There are always delusional people who thought it would be a great idea, who decided to “follow their passion.”

Q: There are so many cooking and food-travel shows now Do you feel like these shows have created a false impression of what it’s like to work in a kitchen?

08-anthony-bourdain-no-reservations.w710.h473

Bourdain: Yeah, sure. But anybody who goes in laboring under the assumption or thinking it’s going to be easy or glamorous is going to be very, very quickly dissuaded. They were not going to last. But that was always the case. There are always delusional people who thought it would be a great idea, who decided to “follow their passion.” This was always a lethal instinct. Or almost always a lethal instinct. And I think the genuine problem is that there are a lot of cooking schools around the country who, in a predatory way, have contributed to or have essentially knowingly encouraged people who, in good conscience, should not be encouraged, and leading them to believe that, at 35 years old, they will be able to roll out of this third-tier cooking school, saddled with a huge and often punitive debt, and somehow ever get out from under.

I mean, they’re not telling them that, if you’re 35, you’re going to be grandpa in the kitchen. You’re going to be, chances are, the oldest person in the kitchen. That it is physically hard, and that you’re going to be getting paid shit, if you’re lucky, for the first few years. And if you want to be really good, then you will insist upon getting paid shit, because what you should be doing is working for somebody really, really good for as close to nothing as they’re willing to give you, in return for the experience. So that’s something that I think it would be useful to point out. That if you have a good job, you’re 35 years old, and you think it’s going to be easy, or that you’re going to make a good living, you at least need a realistic picture of what the business is really like before you make a jump or a commitment like that.

I mean, I admire anyone who wants to cook and knowingly enters the field. It’s a hard thing. But, you know, look before you leap. Because I’ve seen that so many times, kids coming out of cooking school and working in my kitchens, and literally two weeks in, you see it. You look behind the line, and you can just see the dream die. This terrible information sinking in, like, “Oh my God, this is nothing like they told me it was going to be.”

Source : https://www.thrillist.com/entertainment/nation/anthony-bourdain-interview-appetites-cookbook

Philip Roth:”Fluency can be a sign that nothing is happening”

INTERVIEWER

How much of a book is in your mind before you start?

philiproth

ROTH-

What matters most isn’t there at all. I don’t mean the solutions to problems, I mean the problems themselves. You’re looking, as you begin, for what’s going to resist you. You’re looking for trouble. Sometimes in the beginning uncertainty arises not because the writing is difficult, but because it isn’t difficult enough. Fluency can be a sign that nothing is happening; fluency can actually be my signal to stop, while being in the dark from sentence to sentence is what convinces me to go on.

Source : https://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/2957/philip-roth-the-art-of-fiction-no-84-philip-roth

Ed Catmull:”Fear is built into our nature”

The Quarterly: It sounds as though you think a lot about fear and how to counteract its corrosive effects.

ed-catmull

Ed Catmull: Fear is built into our nature; we want to succeed and we respond physiologically to threats—both to real threats and to imagined threats. If people come into an organization like ours and they’re welcomed in, what’s the threat? Well, from their point of view, they’re thinking, “this is a high-functioning environment. Am I going to fit in? Am I going to look bad? Will I screw up?” It’s natural to think this way, but it makes people cautious.

When you go to work for a company, they tell you something about the values of the company and how open they are. But it’s just words. You take your actual cues from what you see. That’s just the way we’re wired. Most people don’t talk explicitly about it, because they don’t want to appear obtuse or out of place. So they’ll sometimes misinterpret what they see. For example, when we were building Pixar, the people at the time played a lot of practical jokes on each other, and they loved that. They think it’s awesome when there are practical jokes and people do things that are wild and crazy.

Now, it’s 20 years later. They’ve got kids; they go home after work. But they still love the practical jokes. When new people come in, they may hear stories about the old days, but they don’t see as much clowning around. So if they were to do it, they might feel out of line. Without anyone saying anything, just based on what they see, they would be less likely to do those things.

Meanwhile, the older people are saying, “what’s wrong with these new people? They’re not like we were. They’re not doing any of this fun stuff.” Without intending to, the culture slowly shifts. How do you keep the shift from happening? I can’t go out and say, “OK, we’re going to organize some wild and crazy activities.” Top-down organizing of spontaneous activities isn’t a good idea. Don’t get me wrong—we still have a lot of pretty crazy things going on, but we are trying to be aware of the unspoken fears that make people overly cautious. If you’re just measuring yourself by your outward success, then you’re missing a huge part of what drives people.

 

Source : https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/organization/our-insights/staying-one-step-ahead-at-pixar-an-interview-with-ed-catmull

Piotr Anderszewski:”there is no such thing as a good piano in the absolute sense”

Do you not find this paradoxical, in a world which is becoming more and more standardized?

maxresdefault

Piotr Anderszewski: It’s less standardized than you think. At the end of the day, I think I would prefer pianos to be identical everywhere (although I’m sure that would actually make me crazy!). Before, there were more piano makers on the market, and their instruments had more unique traits. Today, if Fazioli tries to gain ground, for example, it’s faced with a quasi-monopoly by Steinway on the concert circuit. But Steinway remains a house of high fashion, which makes hand-sewn products: every one of their pianos has its own personality. The tuning, maintenance, storage, the general state of the piano makes each one different – a Steinway from Hamburg is different from one from London, New York, or Tokyo. That said, I hate nothing more than talking with technicians who come to ask you if you want a piano with a ringing sound or a more muffled one, rich or brassy, heavy or light action. That doesn’t make any sense! I want it to ring and be muffled, I want brassy and rich, I want heavy and light! The worst is when a technician assures you that, if you don’t like the regulation, they can “have it all fixed in 5 minutes” – nothing is impossible, they can change everything – in 5 minutes! That makes me scratch my head. I prefer technicians who tell me outright, “You’re looking for something that this piano cannot do.”

The same thing goes for sound engineers: we don’t speak the same language. I just express my point of view (the idea being of course that I be able to recognize my playing), but this kind of conversation seems rather vain to me. I don’t understand anything, really nothing at all, regarding the changes they say they have made on the tracks. For me, in any case, it’s just as bad as it was when they started! I don’t know a thing about all this business of spacing, placing, positioning mikes. I’m not an expert in instrumental mechanics. Is that wrong? Should I be more like my compatriot Krystian Zimerman? Whatever the case, there is no such thing as a good piano in the absolute sense: you always have to account for the space around it that you have to fill with sound. That’s why I don’t think traveling with my own piano would solve anything. At times, I’ve chosen a piano to record an album in a warehouse or in a backstage room, then once the piano is in the recording studio, I think there’s been a mistake: I’ll check, realize that the serial numbers are the same, but nonetheless I don’t recognize it any more, not the touch nor the sound.

Source : http://www.iplaythepiano.com/piano-mag/piotr-anderszewski-interview.html

Lewis Hamilton:”We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us”

Q: Do you think your belief in God helps you in your sport and your job?

racer-lewis-hamilton-mst

HAMILTON: I used to be insecure about the fact that I’m Catholic and that I have a relationship with God. It wasn’t until I got to Formula One that I really started to embrace it and feel comfortable showing it. There’s a quote from Marianne Williamson: “There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you.” I have that tattooed on my chest. She goes on to say, “We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Source : https://www.interviewmagazine.com/culture/lewis-hamilton