The Paperweight
Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Like a lot of people with a lot to do, my desk is never clean. I keep everything where I can see it, in piles that could bury me if a strong wind blew by. Through the jumble, there’s one thing I keep my eye on: a paperweight given to me by my wife Edye back in 1954, inscribed with a quote from George Bernard Shaw. It reads: 

“The reasonable man adapts himself to the world. The unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”

I owe much of my success over the last sixty years in the worlds of homebuilding, financial services, and philanthropy to the philosophy contained in that quote. It inspired me to write my book, “The Art of Being Unreasonable,” which will be released on May 8. I hope you’ll read it.

Not a day goes by when I don’t think and act unreasonably. I approach every encounter—news of the day, meetings with colleagues, events around the world—through the lens of unconventional thinking, relentless curiosity, and unwavering focus.

Writing a book was a new experience for me—in much the same way as writing this blog will be. I’m often asked for my advice and perspective, and I hope to share that with you at this site. In short weekly posts, I’ll offer my take on the market, politics, current events, Los Angeles happenings, contemporary art, philanthropy, and my day-to-day life—events I attend, people I meet, and how I spend my (rare) downtime. By sharing this with you, I hope to show you what it means to live each day unreasonably, how you can apply the approach to your own life, and why the unreasonable way comes with great rewards.

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