Sunday, May 30, 2010

bipolar disorder insight

Hemingway in Madrid, 1960

"Mania takes away reasoning. Depression makes life pointless."
- Julie A. Fast

Saturday, May 29, 2010

The last great garden

Powerscourt, Ireland

Friday, May 28, 2010

noisy mind

On Winston Churchill's 40th birthday, Margot Asquith, the wife of British Prime Minister Herbert Asquith, wrote the following entry in her diary:
Winston Churchill was 40 today. I wrote and congratulated him on his youth. He has done a great deal for a man of 40. When I look round and see as I do a few young men of 35 with amazing brains and see how much less they have done knowing that superiority of character pure and simple is not exactly what Winston has got 'I put myself the question' ... What is it that gives Winston his preeminence? It certainly is not his mind. I said long ago and with truth that Winston has a noisy mind. Certainly not his judgement—he is constantly very wrong indeed ... and roughly speaking he is always wrong in his judgement about people. It is of course his courage and colour—his amazing mixture of industry and enterprise. He can and does always—all ways put himself in the pool.
- William K. Klingaman


"Living in South Africa at the age of 40, Mohandas K. Gandhi often walked to and from his village home to the capital of Johannesburg, 21 miles away, in a single day. Arising at 2 A.M., Gandhi ate breakfast along the way, then had dinner upon his return at 5:30 in the afternoon before retiring early in the evening. His diet consisted largely of raw bananas, lemons, peanuts, oranges, and olive oil; he avoided all cooked foods entirely."
- William K. Klingaman

notable correspondence

Thursday, May 27, 2010

a mogul on happiness

Russell Simmons Speaks to Homeless Men

where gord downie eats

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The Famous Indian Cuisine
1437 Gerrard Street East,
Toronto, ON M4L 1Z7

Image source here.

Twain's Autobiography

Mark Twain, the "father of American literature" (according to William Faulker, at least), spent the last decade of his life working on a brutally honest autobiography. Before he died, he stipulated that it shouldn't be published for 100 years. That was in 1910.

The University of California, Berkeley, which has been holding this 5,000-page memoir in a vault, will publish the first volume this November. The autobiography details his romantic relationship with his secretary, Isabel Van Kleek Lyon; his doubts about God, American foreign policy, and Theodore Roosevelt; and criticisms of supposed friends. The inflammatory content is one reason people think Twain wanted to delay the autobiography by a century.

As Robert Hirst, the man editing the text, says, "he was certainly a man who knew how to make people want to buy a book."

Via Good.


Survey: People uncaring to mentally ill
Published: May 26, 2010 at 1:55 AM

WASHINGTON, May 26 (UPI) -- Twenty-two percent of U.S. adults say people show caring and sympathy to those with mental illness, a government survey indicates.

The national survey by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration of the estimated 9.8 million U.S. adults living with serious mental illness, found the prevalence of serious mental illness is highest in the 18-25 age group.

The HealthStyles Survey, by SAMHSA and Porter Novelli, indicates 72 percent of young adults ages 18-24 say a person with mental illness would improve if given treatment and support. However, only 33 percent say a person can eventually recover from mental illness.

Forty percent of the survey respondents say a person with mental illness can succeed at work and 65 percent say treatment can help people with mental illness.

SAMHSA and The Advertising Council are beginning a national public service announcement campaign aimed at encouraging, educating and inspiring young adults to support friends and family experiencing a mental health problem.

"We know that people can recover from mental health problems," Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of Health and Human Services, says in a statement. "Today we are getting the word out that support from friends and family can make a difference in helping people overcome these illnesses."

No survey details were provided.

© 2010 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

show and sell your art for free

"The great majority of artists around the world don't have dealers to represent or show their work. It makes it pretty well impossible to get your efforts seen, with most dealers too busy or too lazy to visit studios—and who can blame them ... By allowing artists unfettered access to create their own pages to present their work free on the site, communicate with other artists, sell their work without commission direct to buyers, we want to break the deadlock ... The site is helping to get lots of artists' work out of their studios and onto collectors' walls."

Friday, May 21, 2010


"The Incas developed the potato, which is a tasty hybrid of poisonous plants."
- Dan Cruikshank

Image source here.

what bill gates is thinking

Image source here.

Thursday, May 20, 2010


"Sometimes it's a paragraph or sometimes it's six pages."
- Scott Turow on his writing process

what is a derivative?

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"There is no luck without preparation meeting the moment of opportunity."
- Oprah


"Generally chefs who yell at their cooks are expressing their own self-loathing for not having prepared their staff for the job they knew was coming at them."
- Mario Batali


Red, Orange, Tan, and Purple, 1949

With Mark Rothko's paintings, people say that they evoke 'infinity.' Do you see it this way?

My understanding of infinity goes something like this: every 100 years a sparrow flies to the top of a large mountain, and cleans its beak by scraping it on the highest rock. By the time the mountain has been scrapped away to a small pile of dust, that would be the equivalent of the first second of infinity. 
     I thought of that the last time I stood in front of a Rothko and neither felt an overwhelming sense of infinity, nor had a mystical experience of any kind.
     Maybe I've just seen too many Rothkos and they don't pulsate with ethereal splendour for me anymore. Or perhaps I never quite got the wonder of Rothko.

- My Name is Charles Saatchi and I am an Artoholic, p.18

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

good old Georgians

The first curry house in London opened in 1811.

purpose motive

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

denounced as a snitch

Shutter moment.

Monday, May 17, 2010


"If I was not a physicist I'd be a musician."
- Albert Einstein


"Greatness lives on the edge of destruction."
- Will Smith [born 1968]


Birthday, 1938

"What a man does before forty does not matter." ... "Almost all enduring success comes to people after they are forty. For seldom does mature judgement arrive before then."
- Henry Ford, who founded the Ford Motor Company six weeks before he turned 40.

Sunday, May 16, 2010


"If you try that with an automatic the shell will eject straight back to your head. You can't aim properly and a gun will not fire properly on its side axis. But it certainly looks cool."
- Kiefer Sutherland [born 1966]

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Thursday, May 13, 2010


"The best museum in America is New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art."
- R.W. Apple, Jr. [1934-2006]


Mangosteen is a fruit the size of a handball that the California Fruit Lobby won't allow into California, but which is widely available in Vancouver.




Wednesday, May 12, 2010


"The fastest amputation in medical history was performed by Dr. R. Liston in 1801 without an anesthetic. It took 33 seconds and cost the assistant three fingers by his Master's saw."
- Colonel Potter

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

military strategist

"Never engage an enemy for too long or he will adapt to your tactics."
- Carl von Clausewitz [1780-1831]

Monday, May 10, 2010

not painted in a studio

The Impressionists freed art from 1000 years of tradition.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

rolls royce

"It's not possible to enjoy success without experiencing failure. It's not realistic. The issue is purely how you handle failure."
- Peter De Savary [born 1944], Property Developer


"My religion is kindness."
- Dalai Lama

Saturday, May 8, 2010

never give in

"If this long island history of ours is to end at last let it end only when each one of us lies choking on his own blood upon the ground."
- Winston Churchill in Into the Storm

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Sunday, May 2, 2010


Evelyn Waugh in his study, 1949

"In London he had regularly lain in till midmorning. At Chagford he is up at 8:30 and at work by 10. By dinnertime on that first Tuesday, he has written and re-written 1,300 words. By “close of play” on Wednesday the score is “3,000 words odd.” Through the ensuing weeks he works steadily at the rate of up to 2,000 words a day, occasionally more. He revises arduously as he goes. In the end it takes him closer to five months than three, but the book that he knows in his heart he has to write is completed."
- Excerpt from Waugh and Brideshead


"The most wasted day is that in which we have not laughed."
- Nicolas de Chamfort [1741-1794]

Saturday, May 1, 2010


"The comic says funny things; the comedic actor says things funny."
- Carol Burnett [born 1933]


Compare the world's skyscrapers here:
The SkyscraperPage Diagrams began in 1997 with a mission to create the world's most comprehensive collection of skyscraper diagrams. Today, with over 25,000 structures drawn by over 660 illustrators, our collection of diagrams is the largest and most comprehensive skyscraper diagram database in existence.