(a country song)

I didn’t know you left me
I thought you were in the bathroom
You’ve been constipated lately
Spending your time in the bathroom.

I didn’t think you’d ever leave me.

Maybe you weren’t suffering
Or suffering another kind of suffering
Maybe you were plotting
Spending your time in the bathroom.

I didn’t think you’d ever leave me.

Did you kill Uncle Joe?
Maybe that’s what you were plotting
While you pretended constipation
Spending your time in the bathroom.

I didn’t think you’d ever leave me.

Uncle Joe was my favorite uncle
He bought me the best presents all…

It’s true. I just remembered. I even had a blog. I wrote in it just recently because I felt bad. The post was mostly about guilt and neglect. That’s not a good way to feel about something you created and nurtured and pay for, annually. I mean, someone has to host it.

My site was created to house news about my writing, and, yes, to blog (I continue to hate the word; why did we need to create a new word for “journal” or “diary” — why does tech insist on rewriting language every step of the way?), and to…

Not to make light of suffering

But I was feeling it and I said it:

Why did I say it? Why not? I present to you, THE WORLD. Exhibit A:

It might seem Afghanistan has always been this way, and you might be right, and there are a lot of stupid reactions to what is happening (and of course those reactions are by the very people who got Americans into this mess in the first place), but that land sure has lived up to its reputation as an empire killer. If the Americans check out what happened to…

Because business is business

Many of you know me as a writer. And many of you also realize, probably, that writing doesn’t always pay the bills. The little ones and the big ones. That’s why I am in the midst of announcing my new consultancy. This is the website if you want to cut to the chase. And this is what I’ve been writing to people as I launch:

Hi there,

I wanted to introduce you to a new consultancy: arbaStrategies. I founded the company to bring my 20+ years of expertise in content, brand, marketing, strategy and business development…

This is, quite obviously, a pandemic-related problem. Plus due to the fact I haven’t worked a “real” 9–5 type job since March 2020. And then due to the fact that days just melted into each other, weekends stopped making sense, the news was similar almost every day. I met the announcement of every day, every month, with surprise. When the calendar changed to 2021, I met the announcement of that with surprise as well. With wonder almost.

It used to be that you’d write a few cheques with the previous year on it, your bank would tell you, and the…

A bit of professionalism on my part

In the coming weeks, I will launch arbaStrategies, a strategic consultancy/advisory that aims to help brands navigate content, messaging and branding in a complex, noisy world. Every brand has a story waiting to be told. Better. My goal is to help brands do exactly that. My areas of expertise are in aviation, tourism, hospitality, luxury, and associations, among other things. My interests include the aforementioned as well as the environment, non-profits, data, cities and all the issues under the ESG umbrella. I believe in simplicity, authenticity and quality. Years ago, I said “content…

A list where want and need combine

Go to a bar. Preferably my local.

Go to a restaurant and sit at the bar and eat and drink and talk shit.

Not talk about the plague.

Not having to hear the phrase “in these challenging times” until the next plague. And hopefully not then either.

Forgetting my mask at home and not running back to retrieve it.

Get an ice cream and share it with the person who looks like they would enjoy a lick of my ice cream because it’s hot out and ice cream cures everything.

Same with the…

My thinking exactly. I try and ignore all reviews. I avoid the thrill of the good ones and the valleys of the bad ones. I do, however, seem to find the "unfair" ones - mostly people saying "I can't believe they said that" or "It's like they didnt read the book" and then my instincts are out the window.

Yesterday I thought of doing something and instead I took a walk, met up with friends for a coffee, bought some things I’d need to cook and came home. I had a scotch with a friend on the sidewalk in front of the house. Then I had another one on the back deck (by myself). Then I thought about starting to cook.

The scotch is a single malt made under the imprimatur of The Scorpions. Yes. The Rock You Like A Hurricane guys. German pop-metal dudes. It is distilled by Swedes. My friend bought me the bottle because he hasn’t…

Building a media brand (where trust lies) is difficult at the best of times, but even more difficult when the media brand itself is a sub-brand, and where the umbrella brand is so strong itself. Is the reader loyalty to publication or the larger brand? And if there is so much "other" content housed within the larger brand do the sub-brands have a chance (hope?) of building the kind of loyalty that leads to true engagement? This is a problem, too, with custom publishing (a larger one) but the problem created here is unique. One could say that the Medium umbrella is more powerful than, say, Condé Nast's (for example), and the push-pull of where to build is ingrained within Medium. And, probably, part of its own attraction. DNA is hard to change. Gravity harder yet.

Arjun Basu

Writer. Complainer. I drink bourbon. I edit and create media, and work in content, branding and strategy, @arjunbasu and @arbastrategies.

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