Saturday, February 28, 2009

Great Depression Cooking

Friday, February 27, 2009

customer experience

"A willingness to fail, a willingness to be misunderstood, and a willingness to be long-term oriented."
- Jeff Bezos [born 1964] explaining Amazon's success.


Nissan has announced plans to cut its Sunderland, UK, workforce by 1,200. Thousands of unsold cars are stored around the factory's test track. Photograph: Nigel Roddis/Reuters

More images here.

"Don’t be afraid and don’t expect approval"

Thursday, February 26, 2009


Hans Hoffman [1880-1966] identified Elysium [top image] as his own favorite work.

Hofmann came into his own when he was in his 70s and 80s. Robert De Niro's parents met at a Hofmann class. Hoffman's considered by some as the most important artist/teacher of the last several hundred years. Push-Pull. Space. Plasticity.

An earlier reference to De Niro's father here.


Allan Bloom [1930-1992] YouTube page here.

Non-profit founder Jimmy Wales [born 1966] talks about his for-profit website here.

spare change

American West

- Karl Bodmer [1809-1893]

success secrets

One of Turner's 45,000 bison. Image source here.

"[In addition to having high energy], I also keep my sights set on the future and don't spend much time dwelling on the past. I've had some tough experiences as a child and have had my share of business and personal setbacks, but sitting around thinking about them isn't going to change anything. Someone once said that I was a good winner but a better loser. When I have a set back, I put it behind me as fast as I can and keep moving. I don't play golf but I compare the way I respond to disappointments to the way a golfer does after he hits a drive into the water. He doesn't walk down to the pond, dive in, dig out his ball, examine the ball, and ponder what happened. Instead, he takes another ball out of his bag, tees it up, and keeps on playing. After a disappointment I always try to bounce back and I've no doubt that this helped me tremendously. I also have a strong work ethic. From my earliest days pulling weeds in the yard to working for my dad out at the billboard company, nothing was handed to me."
- Ted Turner [born 1938], Call Me Ted, pp. 259-260

An earlier reference to Turner here.

stand up

"Go back far enough in any great man's life, and you will eventually get to the stuff he did or said before he was great or even a man ... Trying to define a person's current self by their past self is the worst kind of gotcha. Our mistakes from the past are just that—mistakes, and most of the time it was necessary to make them in order to become the wiser person we then became ... Yes, if only hindsight could come without having to mess up first. And believe me, I have the platform shoes to prove that one."
- Bill Maher [born 1956], New Rules: Polite Musings from a Timid Observer, p. 170

scattered showers

An earlier reference to Putin here.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Italian Pavilion, Epcot®

Tutto Italia, Walt Disney World

An earlier reference to Disney here.

Major World Indices

... melting down here.


Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona: $30 billion worth of mothballed fighters, bombers, surveillance aircraft, helicopters.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Glacier Street Art

The Epic of Black Gold

Part III - 1/5

Yves Saint Laurent's private art collection auctioned

Reputation Index

RIM ranks 2625 out of 5787 in a Vanno algorithm monitoring companies in the press. 

An earlier reference to RIM here.

Monday, February 23, 2009

social climber

"There is no man, however wise, who has not at some period of his youth said things, or lived in a way the consciousness of which is so unpleasant to him in later life that he would gladly, if he could, expunge it from his memory."
- Marcel Proust [1871-1922]

medieval beverage

Farewell Salute To President Bush

An earlier reference to Bush here.


An earlier reference to Dharavi here.

Sunday, February 22, 2009


Image source here.

why some are better at math than others

"Take a look at the following list of numbers: 4, 8, 5, 3, 9, 7, 6. Read them out loud. Now look away and spend twenty seconds memorizing that sequence before saying them out loud again.
      If you speak English, you have about a 50 percent chance of remembering that sequence perfectly. If you're Chinese, though, you're almost certain to get it right every time. Why is that? Because as human beings we store digits in a memory loop that runs for about two seconds. We most easily memorize whatever we can say or read within that two-second span. And Chinese speakers get that list of numbers— 4, 8, 5, 3, 9, 7, 6 —right almost every time because, unlike English, their language allows them to fit all those seven numbers into two seconds."
- Malcolm Gladwell [born 1963], Outliers: The Story of Success, pp. 227-228

An earlier reference to Gladwell here.

where the princes party

London’s Boujis

View Larger Map

100 Years of Comedy

last song played on the Titanic

Nearer My God, to Thee

Saturday, February 21, 2009

on the fringe

M Boileau Au Cafe, 1893

Disabled Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec [1864-1901] died depressed and paranoid, alcoholic, unmourned, unappreciated at the age of thirty-seven. His work depicts 'la belle époque.'

Carte Grandes Découvertes

Image source here.

trouble solver

"Each problem that I solved became a rule which served afterwards to solve other problems."
- René Descartes [1596-1650]

An earlier reference to Descartes here.

For the Discerning Chiropractor

Available for US $59.95 on eBay.


- Raoul Dufy [1877-1953], Le Grand Orchestre, 1942

observe and normalize


Call Him Ted

"When I suffer a setback, I don't think of myself as losing, I'm simply learning how to win." [Call Me Ted, p. 149]
- Ted Turner [born 1938] whose accomplishments include winning the America's Cup when he was thirty-nine, donating $1 billion to the U.N., owning the most land of any private citizen in the United States.

ancient laughs

Photo by Gembledine

What made ancient Greeks laugh here.

Friday, February 20, 2009


Alec Leamas
What the hell do you think spies are? Moral philosophers measuring everything they do against the word of God or Karl Marx? They're not! They're just a bunch of seedy, squalid bastards like me: little men, drunkards, queers, hen-pecked husbands, civil servants playing cowboys and Indians to brighten their rotten little lives. Do you think they sit like monks in a cell, balancing right against wrong?
From the 1965 screenplay adaptation of John Le Carré's The Spy Who Came in from the Cold.

I need a chief financial officer

Why do you want to be President?

He didn't.

hockey puck

More concert riders here.

Japanese Bug Fight

Thursday, February 19, 2009

How cooking made us Human

The evolutionary role of cookery postulated here.

Credit Crisis

strategic thinking

"A military analogy is to turn the map around to look and see how the enemy views the problem and to attack the enemy's strategy rather than the enemy's tactics."
- Military Advisor to President Obama Craig Mullaney

American Awareness

Gangster Al Capone and his son having baseball autographed by player Gabby Hartnett [Charles Leo Hartnett] from Capone's front row seat at Cominsky Park stadium on September 10, 1931.

"I don't even know what street Canada is on."
- Al Capone [1899-1947]

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Where to eat in Hamilton, Ontario

Shakespeare's; technically English Tudor Renaissance not Medieval.

View Larger Map

best carver in british history

St. Paul's Choir, London

- Grinling Gibbons [1648-1721] was discovered as a chippy [carver] in the dockyard of Deptford by Sir Christopher Wren’s friend John Evelyn [1620-1706].

An earlier reference to Wren here.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Moral Hazard

If you bail someone out of a problem of their own creation, what incentive will they have to behave properly in the future?

first billionaire athlete

unveils brand-extending tower in Dubai.

Ranking of U.S. Presidents

65 Presidential Historians rank the Presidents; complete results here.

5 Most Overrated Blogs

Time lists them here.

Monday, February 16, 2009

difficult life

Vincent van Gogh [1853-1890] in a letter to his brother:
Dear Theo,

Thank you for the money, the paints and the canvas. With your help, I go forward. I feel the force to work growing daily within me. Do you realize, Theo, that what I'm doing is new? And the paintings of the Old Masters—do you ever see a man or woman at work? Do they ever try to paint a laborer? Or a man digging? They didn't. And for good reason, because work is so hard to draw.  To paint these people means to be with them in the fields day after day and by their firesides at night. Since the rains came, I became absorbed in the weavers;  they make such good subjects. The old oak wood darkened by sweating hands and the shadows of the looms and the grey mud walls. All these months I've been trying to find a pattern, trying not so much to draw hands as gestures. Not so much faces as the expressions of people. Men and women who know the meaning of toil. I want to make clear that these people sitting round a meal of potatoes in the evening, have turned the soil with the very hands they put in the dish. That they have honestly earned their food. I want to paint something that smells of bacon sloot and steam. Something that is the good dark color of our Dutch earth. 
From the 1956 screenplay adaptation of Irving Stone's 1934 novel Lust for Life

Vincent van Gogh's Psychiatric assessment here.

Fallingwater, Pennsylvania

An earlier reference to Fallingwater here.


a voice for nature

Dr. Steven Pinker argues that significant innate behavioral differences exist between individuals and between men and women. Discussing child-rearing, he says that children's characters are shaped by their genes, by their peer group and by chance experiences; parents cannot mold their children's nature, nor should they wish to, any more than they can redesign that of their spouses. Those little slates are not as blank as they may seem.
Hundreds of studies have measured correlations between the practices of parents and the way their children turn out. For example, parents who talk a lot to their children have kids with better language skills, parents who spank have children who grow up to be violent, parents who are neither too authoritarian or too lenient have children who are well-adjusted, and so on. Most of the parenting expert industry and a lot of government policy turn these correlations into advice to parents, and blame the parents when children don't turn out as they would have liked. But correlation does not imply causation. Parents provide their children with genes as well as an environment, so the fact that talkative parents have kids with good language skills could simply mean that and that the same genes that make parents talkative make children articulate. Until those studies are replicated with adopted children, who don't get their genes from the people who bring them up, we don't know whether the correlations reflect the effects of parenting, the effects of shared genes, or some mixture. But in most cases even the possibility that the correlations reflect shared genes is taboo. In developmental psychology it's considered impolite even to mention it, let alone test it. [Source: Edge]

Why do people believe that there are dangerous implications of the idea that the mind is a product of the brain, that the brain is organized in part by the genome, and that the genome was shaped by natural selection?
- Dr. Steven Pinker [born 1954] on the ways genes shape human behavior. More here.

Chuck Close on making art during a recession

An earlier reference to Chuck Close here.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Five Stages of Grief

1. Denial
2. Anger
3. Bargaining
4. Depression
5. Acceptance

- a model developed by Psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross [1926-2004] 

An earlier reference to Denial here.

a young revolutionary


If i can't do
what i want to do
then my job is to not
do what i don't want
to do

It's not the same thing
but it's the best i can

If i can't have
what i want . . . then
my job is to want
what i've got
and be satisfied
that at least there
is something more to want

Since i can't go
where i need
to go . . . then i must . . . go
where the signs point
through always understanding
parallel movement
isn't lateral

When i can't express
what i really feel
i practice feeling
what i can express
and none of it is equal

I know
but that's why mankind
alone among the animals
learns to cry

- Nikki Giovanni [born 1943] 

Financial Crisis for Beginners

Youtube Download

How to Easily download YouTube movies via Safari here.

Evolution Acceptance

Saturday, February 14, 2009


Overdiagnosis of bipolar common in substance abuse

January 17, 2009, NEW YORK, NY—Many people who abuse substances and experience mood instability may be overdiagnosed with bipolar disorder, new research suggests.

Researchers with the Mount Sinai School of Medicine said that among people with substance abuse disorders, mood instability and high-risk behavior may suggest the presence of bipolar. But they said active substance abuse makes it more difficult to diagnose bipolar among people with mood complaints.

The study looked at people admitted to a private inpatient clinic for substance abuse and mood disorder problems and found that only a third of those with suspected bipolar actually met the criteria for diagnosis. Those who did were older, were more likely to have past suicide attempts, and abused fewer substances.

The researchers concluded that caution must be exercised when attempting to diagnose patients.

The study, which appeared in The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry electronically ahead of print, was titled “Over-diagnosis of bipolar disorder among substance use disorder inpatients with mood instability.”

Mr. Burns has a radio show

observational one liners

A February 6, 2009 radio interview with Demetri Martin here.

How to Make Mashed Potatoes

Bon Appétit's approach here.

a star is torn


Data Source: 2004-2005 Ontario University Graduate Survey


Daniel Lyons concludes that while blogs can do many wonderful things, making huge amounts of money isn't one of them:
Last year the total spent on blog advertising in the United States was a mere $411 million, according to researcher eMarketer. That represents only a sliver of the $23.7 billion spent on U.S. Internet ads last year, which is itself only a fraction of the $276.8 billion spent on all forms of advertising in the U.S. By 2012 blog ad spending will reach $746 million, while overall online ad spending will hit $32 billion, eMarketer says. More money was spent on e-mail advertising last year than was spent on blog advertising—yet you don't see anyone touting e-mail as the next big billion-dollar media business. Technorati, a blog researcher, estimates that bloggers who run ads earn an average of $5,060 per year. Don't call the Ferrari dealer just yet.
The entire article is here.

Shocker: Unethical Doctor

TAMPA -- A University of South Florida dean is being investigated after surveillance video captured him taking a red bike from the loading dock of the Johnnie B. Byrd, Sr., Alzheimer's Center and Research Institute.

Dr. Abdul Rao, senior associate vice president for research at USF College of Medicine, said he took the bike on Monday to help a "nearly homeless'' friend and intended no harm.

The story continues here.

Friday, February 13, 2009

wealthy trees

"Everybody says I'm a genius, but I don't have any money and it's all a mess."
- Cambridge University educated Nick Drake [1948-1974] who was on antidepressants and living with his parents. 

bullfights and bistros

Mike Campbell
I should have thought you'd have loved being a steer, Robert.
Robert Cohn
What do you mean, Mike?
Mike Campbell
Well, they lead a sort of quiet life. They never say anything important, and they're always hanging around. I should have thought you'd have enjoyed that. Aren't you going to say anything?
- Peter Viertel's 1957 screenplay adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's 1926 novel The Sun Also Rises.

Steer: a young ox, especially one castrated before sexual maturity and raised for beef.

An earlier reference to Hemingway here.


Wise advice from Hall of Famer Lawrence Taylor [born 1959].

History of the Internet

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Irritable insides?

That need to evacuate your bodily innards immediately? Perhaps you have some iteration of Crohn's disease.


Frank Stella [born 1936], Hyena Stomp, 1962

"The title Hyena Stomp comes from a track by the American jazz musician Jelly Roll Morton. Stella was thinking about syncopation while working on the painting."
- From the Tate Modern display caption, September 2004