Time magazine’s Joel Stein has an entertaining and insightful column this week on personal branding.

When faced with the challenge of coming up with a “brand” for himself, Stein initially recoils:

“…I realized that I was sometimes funny, sometimes serious and a lot of the time staring at the television. This was not a brand.”

But he eventually embraces the reality that branding is, in actuality, something we all do every day:

“…in the age of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr, putting out an exaggerated version of your personality is necessary. Sure, we want the people in our lives to have a full understanding of us, but controlling our shorthand is a good idea. It’s like our superhero costumes, only not necessarily supergay. If you don’t give your brand some thought, you become the guy whose funeral is all about how much he loved the Mets.”

With this advice in mind, Pittsburgh readers may want to consider that they could always be remembered as the guy who really loved the Pirates.