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David has been writing and publishing since 2006.  

Issue 370 – 03/27/2020

Mar 27, 2020 | Fifteen on Friday

Spousal Work Mode, H.E.B and the Pandemic, Modern Day Hat Making

Issue 370

by David Wells – Nashville TN

From the Editor
Last week, we discussed the disruption in life from COVID-19.  And while that is certainly on-going, I thought it worthwhile this week to highlight the creativity that our newfound constraints is cultivating.  Here are just a few things I have seen in the last week:

  • E-sports mixing pro’s and amateurs – Formula 1 and Nascar alike both hosted races streaming over the web with a mixture of drivers at the helm…Honestly, the photo finish from the Nascar race was pretty gripping TV- even more so in a the competition vacuum we are living in
  • New models for restaurants –  While restaurants are no doubt hurting – there is a wave of innovation going on.  In Nashville, one restaurant has gone to pre-sold family style meals with great success.  Another is doing a robust take-out business – certainly helped by the ability to offer to-go alcohol.  The common denominator – passionate fan bases.  Those that are surviving knew and were communicating regularly with their customers prior to this. 
  • Online concerts – From EDM DJ’s pinning sets online to performing artists streaming their new work, music is being performed.
  • Kids content galore – From kids workout videos with Joe Wicks “The World’s PE Teacher” to educational content are helping parents navigate homeschooling.  Any one else feel like we’ve all become Montessori educators now?
  • Zoom Zoom Zoom – Zoom, the videoconferencing service, has enabled all sorts of new types of human interaction.  From Zoom dates, to virtual parties, prayer groups, etc. – people are seeing just how many forms of everyday human interaction can move online

Original content:
  • Don’t Fear the Reaper? – Where are We and What’s Going On?  Obviously, the world has changed a lot in the last few weeks. Because there are so many moving pieces currently, I thought it worthwhile to summarize at a high level where markets are currently and what is going on.
  • My Favorite Family Office Saying The mentality of “if you aren’t the best, you are the worst because its you” can help serve as an Occam’s Razor for families as they evaluate various paths of action.
All the best,


Food for Thought


  1. TexasMonthly – Inside the Story of How H-E-B Planned for the Pandemic – Credit MB – This is fantastic and should be an inspiration to all boards and management teams – The grocer started communicating with Chinese counterparts in January and was running tabletop simulations a few weeks later. (But nothing prepared it for the rush on toilet paper.)
  2. Oaktree – Howard Marks Weekly Update
  3. NYT – A Boom Time for the Bean Industry  “It’s just shocking,” one bean supplier said. “I used to be the loneliest man at the farmer’s market.”
  4. CapitalAllocators – Systemic Risk in a Crisis


  1. TheAtlantic – The College President Who Simply Won’t Raise Tuition
  2. Jalopnik – Professional NASCAR Drivers Competed In A Virtual Race And It Was Pretty Epic
  3. Pocket – The Unique Science of Left-Handedness
  4. Permanent Style – The quality and style of Wellema hats – Love seeing a true craftsman at work


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Nashville, TN