Saturday, November 28, 2009

Romania and powerlessness

I'm in Bucharest for a few weeks because of the Tuck Global Consultancy. I was really excited for the trip mostly because I've never been to a former communist country before and I'm fascinated by the cultural battle that is waged between the old centrally planned and largely bland architecture/television/movies and the newer market types. Preparing for the trip I watched a few Romanian films to try to see what kind of art the country creates.

The most overwhelming feeling I got from the films was a profound sense of powerlessness and frustration. The Death of Mr. Lazarescu brings this powerless home in the overburdened and overwhelmed health care provided by the state. Watching the plot unfold, you realize there is no quick fix to the devastation done to this country over during their 44 years under communist rule. I felt the same thing when I was watching 12:08 East of Bucharest, a film which discusses whether or not citizens of a small city on the outskirts of the capital participated in the 1989 revolution. It seems that the film's characters are desperate to have participated because it will mark some sense of control in the matter. We are given the overwhelming indication that no such revolution took place in the town. Lastly, Childern Undergroud is a profound movie detailing the absolute hopelessness of the homeless child population in the city. Often blissfully unaware of the absurdity of their existence, the children in the film are as young as eight. The culprit is once again found to be the devastation left by the communists.

All of the films were wonderful, and the artistic quality gave shape to the sense of Romania's uniqueness as an island of Latin in a sea of Slavic. I wonder if Romania will be able to channel this uniqueness into the sort of energy we've seen out of the other recent admits into the EU. I'm confident that something along these lines will happen, and I think it will be fun to watch over the next decade.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Diversity Confernce

Coming up this weekend.

As a signaling mechanism, I think the conferences is efficient and adequate. Tuck has done a great job in this area and it isn't always captured in in a single visit. Putting out significant resources to show dedication to diversity sends a signal that not every MBA program can or will follow.

I'm excited for the Around the World Party.

Friday, October 30, 2009

As Time Goes By is the best song in a film of all time. Listening to it again, it captures the whole mood of the film so well, that I'm not sure another song compares in this regard.

I think the Entertainment, Sports and Media club should host a panel on song and film. The business model of having a hit song to go with a hit film is a winner and I wonder if studios really put the full effort into the music side of the equation. In my experience, the soundtrack has been a mere afterthought.

Monday, September 14, 2009


Top 10 Patrick Swayze Movies

1. Road House
2. The Outsiders
3. Red Dawn
4. Point Break
5. Next of Kin
6. Donnie Darko
7. Ghost
8. Dirty Dancing
9. Three Wishes
10. Too Wong Foo

Monday, August 31, 2009

Pass on Post Grad

Predictable, and unintertaining fare. I found my self checking my watch at the one-hour mark, which is early even for me. Not a good look for Fox Searchlight.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Recruiting early

I'm out in LA right now meeting with a few firms for recruiting. If there is one thing that I would definitely stress to business school students, it is the value of early recruiting.

In terms of signaling, it shows that you are interested early, that you are willing to give up some marginal leisure time, and that you are knowledgable about the industry and firms before they do their company briefings, which can add quite a bit of difference at the margin.