This morning, my team at FiftyThree published an open letter to Facebook to request that they change the name of their new app, Paper, which is causing confusion among our customers and press who recognize FiftyThree for our award-winning app of the same name. Read our letter here.
Sometimes when I think about my job I become totally overwhelmed by emotion knowing how lucky I am to work at a place like FiftyThree. The feeling is beyond thankfulness. It’s a sense of relief and wonder inspired by being part of something that I thought was irretrievably lost or nonexistent: a fast-growing small company with heart that’s free of ego and small mindedness.
In a city like New York where everyday inconveniences like a frustrating commute or unpleasant interaction can blemish your day and eat into your productivity, FiftyThree is, as much as possible, a place where you can step back from life’s more trivial pursuits to view the bigger picture. It’s a sandbox where the other kids share their plastic shovels and buckets, inviting you to build the castle with them.
Guess this is the long way of saying thank you, Georg, and all my coworkers at FiftyThree.
Happy Birthday, Georg! Thanks for your optimism, your insight, and, above all, for helping make FiftyThree the space to create.
The wall is painted!
After spending most of the holiday season working on my laptop, I have been making a concerted effort to spend more time offline. My kitchen is getting painted today, a project that I’ve been putting off for over a year. I am not even doing the painting myself. It literally took me fifteen months to get past procrastination to pick a color and hire a painter to come paint…
I bought this beautiful line-free notebook in the fall and am slowly filling its pages. I realized that I haven’t used my hands to make anything in a long time so, last night after dinner at Char No. 4, I picked up Elmer’s glue from a Rite Aid so that I can glue stuff together. I have been drinking coffee, sending actual mail, reading books. Trying to make the best of hibernation season until spring returns.
Lovely video card made by Mixtape Club. Sure, I may be biased but it’s definitely the best company card I’ve received this holiday.
slow food holiday market
I’ve been a fan of Slow Food NYC for a while but have not done quite enough to support them. This Sunday, December 8th, they’re hosting a holiday market featuring local food entrepreneurs. The bonus? It’s all happening at Astor Center which is also the home of Astor Wines & Spirits where Chris and I go to stock up on delicious, affordable wines.
If you’re in town this Sunday, stop by!
This week my team is celebrating 100 million pages that have been created with our app, Paper. Because much of my job involves telling stories of normal people doing extraordinary things, I feel very lucky to be the bearer of good news time and time again.
I hope to make some time this Thanksgiving weekend to write about everything that’s been happening in life lately. And maybe convince Chris to be my date to see that new Rachel McAdams movie.
100 Million Thanks
In March 2012, we released Paper with the hope of creating a place where ideas can live and thrive. Since then, over 100 million pages have been made with Paper by creators around the world.
Collectively, creators have spent one millennium with their ideas in Paper. These moments add up. Moments like an ex-elephant trainer drawing wildlife, a former painter who’s now teaching digital art to kids, a developer sharing inspiration from Startup School. It’s time spent preserving recipes, capturing life in a new city, designing homes, performing on stage, thinking clearly, and thanking customers. We all create, and this is something to celebrate.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we recapped a few highlights from the past 20 months. This week we’ll also showcase the work of creators old and new. Share what you’re working on and we’ll feature our favorites on Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook and in the in-app Made With Paper stream.
Get inspired, celebrate with us. Here’s to all the ideas that are yet to come.
Looking back on the week in Paris, I realize there’s a lot to reflect on and to process. Guess spending every minute with your mom in a foreign country for six days without reprieve will do that to you.
new pok pok cookbook + event tonight
The Strand, my favorite bookstore from childhood days in New York City, is hosting Pok Pok owner Andy Ricker tonight to talk about his new cookbook.
I had a once-in-a-decade chance to interview Andy and dine with him at Pok Pok earlier this year so I’m very excited to see his book finally in stores.
Still, I can’t cook if my life and awesome YouTube show depended on it, but I know enough people who can and who love Pok Pok from coast to coast, so I’ll be picking up a few copies tonight. See you there!
parents, paper and paris
I’m in Paris with my mom this week to celebrate her 60th birthday. It’s the most time we’ve spent together in over five years. On the flight from New York, I introduced her to Paper in an effort to 1) show her the product that FiftyThree created which we pour our hearts into making better every day, and 2) to keep her entertained when I can’t give her my full attention…cause I’ve been working at night. On holiday. I’m a little embarrassed to even admit it; it’s a fact of my life. I have a hard time disconnecting.
But, you know, c’est la vie as the French would say.
After dinner, my mom and I have been returning to our hotel to rest up for the next day (or at least that’s the plan). Instead, while I’ve been catching up on emails, she opens Paper on my iPad to write letters to her friends and siblings in Chinese, completely unprompted by me.
My mom speaks little English and had never used a tablet up until last Tuesday. Seeing her writing, doodling and sending emails around the world from Paper without my help, acting like a happy kid who’s wholly engrossed in a fun game, has been an unexpected but gratifying reminder that I’m staying up for the right thing.
Unforgettable pistachio cream dessert at Manger. Rainy afternoon spent in charming Colorova cafe. The Champs–Élysées at dusk viewed from the top of the Arc de Triomphe.
Lastly, for one reason or another, I have been using Instagram more often than usual. Follow me @amycao for tiny square photos.
first night in paris
Rainy reflections on Avenue de New York. The Eiffel Tower all lit up.