Dinner with Edward Snowden

There are many people with whom I’d like to have dinner. My list includes mostly celebrities and a few politicans. But unlike most of those people, Edward Snowden has been in exile from the United States, so he has been almost inaccessible to the U.S. public. Unlike most of those people, Edward Snowden is considered an enemy of the United States. What I’m most interested in, is what possessed him to leak information about the government. Undoubtably he is a brilliant computer genius and could’ve been really successful, instead he is spending his entire life on the run in between Russia and China.

Our dinner would have to be in one of the few countries that give immunity. First I’d ask him about his current life in comparison to the one he used to live in the United Staes? Has he been able to keep in contact with his family? But then I’d ask the real questions that everyone has been wondering, why did he do it? That would be my first question for him. What was the process that lead up to the point where he decided to leak government information? Does he regret it? There must been so much more to the story than the media lets on. Also, he must have felt like it was his duty to the world…otherwise why else would he give up his entire life in order to publicize this top secret government information?

There is a lot of insight that Snowden could give me that I could otherwise not get from the media and newspapers. It seems that there is a lot that we still do not know as citizens, whether it is our best interest to know about things I don’t know. However, many people felt betrayed after Wikileaks. Edward Snowden could potentially clear this negative image he has during this dinner and I would like to give that chance.

A mentor to guide you

Finding the right person to have dinner is a tough choice. But Dan Friedman, who is the cofounder of Thinkful, would be someone I would be interested in taking out to dinner. Thinkful is an online programming school for grown ups. People who sign up for the course spend 7 to 10 hours weekly on course load costing from $1,200 to $1,500 and weekly one-on-one coaching from mentors, who are industry experts. The courses range from web development to data science in various skills levels.  Continue reading A mentor to guide you

Dinner with Bill


This post is a response to the question: “What living person would you have dinner with if you could choose anybody?”

I ruled out current role models I already look up to because to use my magical summoning power to have dinner with someone I already know seemed wasteful. My final choice was not the most famous person I considered; nor the most talented; nor the smartest; he is not even the most difficult to actually get in touch with among the dinner partners I considered (that would be you, Dalai Lama). If I could have dinner with one person, I would chose Bill Simmons: Editor and columnist for Grantland.Com, former ESPN columnist, author, and host of many sports related podcasts and talk shows.

I chose Bill Simmons over my other finalists (Malcolm Gladwell, Desmond Tutu, Dalai Lama, Donald Glover) because he has been a large part of my life for many years. he has been my undisputed favorite sports writer for as long as I can remember (Stephen A Smith’s days as a writer for the Philadelphia Inquirer were always a close  2nd place). He is passionate about his work. He has amassed an incredible amount of information and stories about the sports world, specifically the NBA, which I am very passionate about. He continues to be on the forefront of creating new types of content (ESPN’s 30 for 30 series), and more than anything he is entertaining, thought provoking, and has been my favorite read on the internet my whole life.

I imagine Bill and I would dine at a steakhouse in LA or Boston: a meal that should give us plenty of time to talk. I would want to hear anecdotes about Magic and Bird, about Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson, and Pedro Martinez. I’d want to hear about the times he’s had with Jimmy Kimmel that they can’t joke about on air. I’d trade opinions with him a wide range of topics from sports, to movies, music, and general theories on life. I’d want to hear what he’s working on next.

As much as I would enjoy the dinner itself, I would be happiest if I were able to translate our meal into a continued relationship. I would love to enter Bill’s inner-circle: to learn what he is working on next, to be able to be a fly on the wall and hear about the time he spends with superstar athletes and personalities, to be able to shoot him a text or an email when I see something on TV that I have to tell somebody about immediately.

growing up just the right amount

In a New York Times article about him, Shane Smith, CEO and co-founder of Vice Media, was quoted, saying he wanted to be just like Tom Freston, “Tom Just flies around everywhere, gets to make movies, gets to start TV shows, hang out with cool people and do whatever he wants.” Tom Freston was a top executive at Viacom and was instrumental in the success of MTV and is now an advisor to Vice. Just like Shane Smith, I want to be just like Tom, and since Shane Smith is now just like Tom, I want to be just like Shane Smith for the same reasons he wants to be just like Tom.

Continue reading growing up just the right amount

I’ll Have the Rata-Louie

Louis CK is by far my favorite stand-up comedian.  His sense of humor is extremely sarcastic (and very dark at times), and it is centered around questioning and satirizing the many socially accepted conventions of modern Americans.  He plucks out common every day situations that most people ignore and accept and really lays out in great detail why they are so ridiculous.  Not only is he unbelievably effective at delivery of humor, but his material is also both completely universal and exceptionally accurate.   Continue reading I’ll Have the Rata-Louie

The Best Friend I Want

I have a small list of celebrities that I would one day like to be friends with. Maybe that’s not okay to admit, but it is the truth. On that list are the likes of Jennifer Lawrence, Adele, Sam Heughan, and quite a few others, including the wonderful Mindy Kaling.

Beginning with The Office and following her to The Mindy Project,  I have admired Kaling’s sense of humor and work ethic for years. I love that she tells it likes it is and writes characters that are lovable and flawed. The opportunity to have dinner with a role model like Mindy Kaling would be both hilariously fun as well as inspirational.


Continue reading The Best Friend I Want

The Realities of College

I had the opportunity to go and see the play “101” last weekend. The play was performed by Bucknell’s very own Department of Theatre and Dance.  To be honest, I had a pretty negative outlook going into the play, thinking it’d be a musical about a story I would have no interest in. To my surprise, I really enjoyed the story. It captured many prominent elements and phases a college student encounters during their college experience.

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Wait, I Thought That Was an Egg!

Being a huge foodie myself, I can talk about, write about and eat food 24/7 and I am always open for trying new and “different” types of foods. Having said that it’s no surprise that I chose Heston Blumenthal, one of the top chefs in the field of molecular gastronomy, as the person I would want to go to dinner with.

To better explain what molecular gastronomy here is a small question: What do you think is represented in the picture below?     Breakfast_MoleculeR_551 Continue reading Wait, I Thought That Was an Egg!

The Glory Days

I actually wrote one of these blog posts earlier in the semester and picked French soccer international, Thierry Henry. The close second on my list of people was the one and only Sir Alex Ferguson, Manchester United’s most celebrated coach of all time. Most of you are probably unaware of who this is. To give you a little background on Sir Alex Ferguson, he the Coach K of Duke basketball or the Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots(A little more respectable might I add).  In other words, he is an absolute legend. During his 26 years of coaching at Manchester United, he won 38 trophies including 13 Premier League Championships and 3 Champions League trophies.

Continue reading The Glory Days