Mojo Mickybo — go and see it!

My friend Lilli is producing the play Mojo Mickybo by Owen McCafferty which is about to open in the West End. It’s on at the Trafalgar Studio between 27 June — 21 July and you can book tickets here. If you quote “Strawberry Vale offer” you can get tickets for £15 for the shows before July 6th. I heartily recommend going along — it’s a wonderful show. I saw it when it was on at the Arcola theatre a couple of months ago.

And even theatre-land has clocked the power of YouTube — here’s the trailer.

Mainstream Green

I went along to Grand Designs Live yesterday in a very big shed in London’s Docklands. It was amazing to see how mainstream eco-living is becoming. I remember when the only place you could really see renewables demonstrated was CAT in Wales, but now there are hundreds of companies getting in on the act.

The funny thing is that alongside the stands selling solar water heaters and wind turbines, you still have people selling gas-fired patio heaters and energy guzzling hot-tubs. It’s all very strange. I’m writing a bit about it at the moment because I think we’re only just at the beginning of climate change confusion.

Anyway, I did come away with a very cool toy. Bye Bye Standby

basically makes it really easy to turn off all those gadgets that sit on stand by in one go. Seems to work really well.

Bye Bye Standby

Among the swans

If you want a good insight into what being a first time entrepreneur is like, Nassim Taleb gets it spot on in this short passage from his book The Black Swan

(the first book I’ve read in months by the way — when I was at Demos I read about one non-fiction book cover-to-cover per week):

“Many people labor in life under the impression that they are doing something right, yet they may not show solid results for a long time. They need a capacity for continually adjourned gratification to survive a steady diet of peer cruelty without becoming demoralized. They look like idiots to their cousins, they look like idiots to their peers, they need courage to continue. No confirmation comes to them, no validation, no fawning students, No Nobel, no Scnobel. “How was your year?” brings them a small but containable spasm of pain deep inside, since almost all of their years will seem wasted to someone looking at their life from the outside. Then bang, the lumpy event comes that brings the great vindication. Or it may never come.”

It’s been the strangest roller-coaster of a year for me. The emotional ups and downs have been more extreme than anything I’ve ever experienced before. I’ve bounced out of investor meetings, laughed myself silly with the team, surprised myself at how angry I can get and, on one occasion, found myself crying uncontrollably in a pub. I’ve been lucky and had an amazing amount of support from my co-founders, family and friends. I don’t know how people who don’t have that support manage it.

And I still can’t say whether it’s going to work or not. On paper — like any other start-up — the chances of us succeeding are tiny. We’re also trying to do something ridiculously ambitious that nobody has ever tried before. But somehow, I know deep down that we’re going to succeed. Don’t ask me how — I just know.

The funny thing is that now I’ve started, I can’t imagine doing anything else.