The resident faculty left a gift box outside the mail room. In the box was a note reading “Take this.” We hope it was a clue. (More)

First our thanks to last week’s writers:

On Monday, you shared your stories of offline political activism in Things We Did This Week, addisnana considered Headlines vs. the Details of the Story in Midday Matinee, and winterbanyan saw how Clouds Helped Greenland Melt in Our Earth.

On Tuesday, Winning Progressive shared Comments on Austerity, Marriage Equality, Syria, and More in Morning Feature, we reflected on Our Best and Our Worst in Furthermore!, readers helped tell Tuesday’s Tale: The Fluffernutter Bandit in Midday Matinee, and winterbanyan spotted A Slimy Mess of Invaders in Our Earth.

On Wednesday, Winning Progressive asked us to Support the Robin Hood Tax in Morning Feature, the Squirrel ranted on Ancient Aliens, the Supreme Court, and Boston in Furthermore!, addisnana shared The Central Park Five in Midday Matinee, and winterbanyan warned that Invasive Species Threatens Reefs in Our Earth.

On Thursday, we paused as A Hard Week Gets Worse in Morning Feature and triciawyse offered Fursdai Furries in Midday Matinee.

On Friday, we offered a Liveblog of Boston-Watertown News in Morning Feature and triciawyse brought us Frieday Critters in Midday Matinee.

On the weekend, we celebrated Applause in Watertown in Saturday’s Morning Feature, Ms. Crissie was asked about An Excel-lent Error? in Sunday’s Morning Feature, Winning Progressive offered Weekend Reading in Furthermore!, and winterbanyan brought our weekly Eco News Roundup in Our Earth.

Note: Please share your stories of offline political activism in Things We Did This Week.

Thus we return to the gift box left outside the mail room by the resident faculty, as they made their way from the wine cellar library where they spent the weekend drinking thinking on our motto of Magis vinum, magis verum (“More wine, more truth”) to the hot tub faculty lounge for their weekly game where the underwear goes flying planning conference.

The box contained a note reading “Take this,” which the staff quickly decided was a clue. Chef searched the box and even turned over and gave it a shake, but she found nothing else inside. Pootie the Precious thought the ribbon was pretty, and decided the box was her new playhouse. While she entertained herself, the rest of the staff attempted to parse the clue without the help of the Squirrel, who was preparing his response to an online rumor for today’s Furthermore!.

“Well, they gave it to us,” the Professor of Astrology Janitor said. “And we took it.”

“That’s true,” Chef agreed, “but they didn’t give us anything except a note that read ‘Take this.'”

The Professor of Astrology Janitor shook his head. “No, they also gave us a box.”

“Good point,” Chef agreed. “And we gave the box to Pootie the Precious.”

“And the box amplifies her purring nicely,” your lowly mail room clerk noted. “Although we’re no closer to knowing what this week’s clue means.”

The Squirrel huffed and tapped at his Blewberry. “Okay, okay, I’ll stop working to clear my good name and tell you. This week the resident faculty will discuss Adam Grant’s new book Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success. Now can I get back to what I was doing?”

We apologized for disturbing him and perused the book’s overview:

For generations, we have focused on the individual drivers of success: passion, hard work, talent, and luck. But today, success is increasingly dependent on how we interact with others. It turns out that at work, most people operate as either takers, matchers, or givers. Whereas takers strive to get as much as possible from others and matchers aim to trade evenly, givers are the rare breed of people who contribute to others without expecting anything in return.

Using his own pioneering research as Wharton’s youngest tenured professor, Grant shows that these styles have a surprising impact on success. Although some givers get exploited and burn out, the rest achieve extraordinary results across a wide range of industries. Combining cutting-edge evidence with captivating stories, this landmark book shows how one of America’s best networkers developed his connections, why the creative genius behind one of the most popular shows in television history toiled for years in anonymity, how a basketball executive responsible for multiple draft busts transformed his franchise into a winner, and how we could have anticipated Enron’s demise four years before the company collapsed-without ever looking at a single number.

So that’s what the resident faculty will discuss this week, unless they get boxed in. If so, we’ll give them a hand. And they’ll probably take it.


Happy Monday!