Saturday, May 19, 2012

"The Sentimental Gentleman of Swing"......

Tommy Dorsey....................................Marie

On brain-deadedness.........

Stuart Schneiderman opines on the dangers of political correctness as a thinking model -here.  Excerpt here:
"To function effectively the human mind needs the proper nourishment. It needs to receive a steady diet of good writing and good thinking. Otherwise it will atrophy and die."

A layman's guide to beer.............

Personally, it is all about re-building bone mass.  Enjoy.

(Blogger doesn't seem to handle these larger images very well.
Double clicking will send you to a more readable space.)

Beer Infographic

Source: FrugalDad.com







...the known irrational characteristics................

Feynman offers a short discourse on flying saucers:

Bullish on America............


From Ben Casnocha, who travels more than most, comes this essay on culture and entrepreneurialness.
Excerpt here:
"The single best reason to be long on the future of the U.S. is it has a culture of entrepreneurship. It was born this way. Contra Umair Haque — who thinks “it was the American way of life that ate America. And America’s real bankruptcy is a bankruptcy of the soul” — in fact it’s the American way of life and the American soul that are one of the redeeming and enduring attributes of the country’s DNA in this time of uncertainty. The free wheeling spirit, the self-reliance, the fearlessness, the celebration of youth, the permanent fresh start: these things remain, independent of the meltdown of our governance system."

Opening paragraphs.................

     "The last time I'd eaten at the Water Grill I sat across the table from a client who had coldly and calculatedly murdered his wife and her lover, shooting both of them in the face.  He had engaged my services to not only defend him at trial but fully exonerate him and restore his good name in the public eye.  This time I was sitting with someone with whom I needed to be even more careful.  I was dining with Gabriel Williams, the district attorney of Los Angeles County."
-Michael Connelly,  The Reversal

Testing, Testing, Testing.......


Richard Wiseman...................World's Quickest Personality Test

 

Opportunities.................



"Unplanned opportunities may be your best chance of creating a great strategy so you need to be constantly looking for them. Evidence supports the idea that the most successful entrepreneurs and leaders are fantastic at noticing opportunities. And the greatest opportunities come from reactions to unplanned events."
-Max McKeown

Friday, May 18, 2012

Fun with voices............................................or, lyrics are just so overrated................................

from the newer stuff..............



from  Barry Mann and the older stuff.................




or, from the Witch Doctor....................




or, from the voice master, Bobby McFerrin...............



thanks Craig for pointing the way

The individuality of uniformness................


Baruch....................



Bernard Baruch was the rare kind of investor who gives speculation 
a good name.  Wiki here.  More information  here. A few quotes here:

"Old books that have ceased to be of service should no more be abandoned than should old friends who have ceased to give pleasure."

"The art of living lies not in eliminating but in growing with troubles."

"One of the secrets of a long and fruitful life is to forgive everybody everything every night before you go to bed."

"Vote for the man who promises least; he'll be the least disappointing."

"The greatest blessing of our democracy is freedom. But in the last analysis, our only freedom is the freedom to discipline ourselves."

"Always do one thing less than you think you can do."

"The main purpose of the stock market is to make fools of as many men as possible."

"A speculator is a man who observes the future, and acts before it occurs."

"Age is only a number, a cipher for the records. A man can't retire his experience. He must use it. Experience achieves more with less energy and time."

"During my eighty-seven years I have witnessed a whole succession of technological revolutions. But none of them has done away with the need for character in the individual or the ability to think."

"I made my money by selling too soon."

"I never lost money by turning a profit."

"Most of the successful people I've known are the ones who do more listening than talking."

For all you Scrabble players...........


As a public service, here are a few words (no formal names)
beginning with "Q" that do not require a "U".  Score well my friends:

Qadi       n      a judge in a Muslim communitywhose decisions 
                        are based on Islamic religious law.


Qanat     n.    An ancient system of tunnels and wells built to
                       channel water.

Qat         n.   Alternative spelling of Khat:  A plant whose fresh
                       leaf is chewed for its stimulating effects

Qintar     n.   A monetary unit in Albania

Qasida    n.   An Arabic poem, usually in mono rhyme, that may   
                       be satirical,elegiac, threatening, or laudatory.

Qi           n.    A variant of chi

Qwerty   adj.  of, or pertaining to,a keyboard having the keys in  
                         traditional typewriter arrangement.

Commencement addresses..........

    Spring is a great season for many reasons.  One of them being it is the time for commencement addresses.  Some of the all-time great speeches have been given at graduation ceremonies.  I'd like to tell you that I remember the one delivered when I graduated from Dension (1973, since you asked), but I don't.  Too much going on.
     Aaron Sorkin graduated from Syracuse in 1983.  He was invited back to speak to this year's graduating class.  His full, excellent and read-worthy, address is here.  A few excerpts here:

"I ran into a woman who'd been a senior here when I was a freshman.  I asked her how it was going and how she felt Syracuse had prepared her for the early stages of her career.  She said, "Well, the thing is, after three years you start to forget everything they taught you in college.  But once you've done that, you'll be fine."  I laughed because I thought it was funny and also because I wanted to ask her out, but I also think she was wrong."


"I've made some bad decisions.  I lost a decade of my life to cocaine addiction.  You know how I got addicted to cocaine?  I tried it.  The problem with drugs is that they work, right up until the moment that they decimate your life.  Try cocaine, and you'll become addicted to it.  Become addicted to cocaine, and you will either be dead, or you will wish you were dead, but it will only be one or the other."


"Don't ever forget that you're a citizen of this world, and there are things you can do to lift the human spirit, things that are easy, things that are free, things that you can do every day. Civility, respect, kindness, character."


"Rehearsal's over. You're going out there now, you're going to do this thing. How you live matters. You're going to fall down, but the world doesn't care how many times you fall down, as long as it's one fewer than the number of times you get back up."

An exchange....................


Happiness is never "just around the corner".........

















my apologies - i forgot where this one came from, but thanks

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Paul Desmond................Wow!

Dave Brubeck........................................Take Five

About laws...............

"Probably all laws are useless; for good men do not want laws at all, and bad men are made no better by them."
-Demonax

Demonax................


I probably would have followed his blog.  Here is what Wikipedia has to say.  Here is what Lucian had to say. Here is an excerpt from Lucian:

"He was no half-baked enthusiast either; he had lived with the poets, and knew most of them by heart; he was a practised speaker; he had a knowledge of philosophic principles not of the superficial skin-deep order; he had developed and hardened his body by exercise and toil, and, in short, had been at the pains to make himself every man's equal at every point. He was consistent enough, when he found that he could no longer suffice to himself, to depart voluntarily from life, leaving a great reputation behind him among the true nobility of Greece.
Instead of confining himself to a single philosophic school, he laid them all under contribution, without showing clearly which of them he preferred; but perhaps he was nearest akin to Socrates; for, though he had leanings as regards externals and plain living to Diogenes, he never studied effect or lived for the applause and admiration of the multitude; his ways were like other people's; he mounted no high horse; he was just a man and a citizen. He indulged in no Socratic irony; but his discourse was full of Attic grace; those who heard it went away neither disgusted by servility nor repelled by ill-tempered censure, but on the contrary lifted out of themselves by charity, and encouraged to more orderly, contented, hopeful lives."

Speaking of laws.....................



thanks swissmiss

Liking the recent looks of this trend line..........
















thanks bill

About those choices............

"I am not what has happened to me.  I am what I choose to become."
-Carl Jung

On why the Spartans hated philosophers.....

Ryan Holiday on the false bravado of philosophy - here.  Excerpt here:


"Remember, all the preparation and philosophy and clever sayings in the world are no guarantee of strength under duress. In fact, it may foreshadow the opposite. Why? Because they lead us to think it will not be so hard."

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Gandhi on truth..................

“When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it--always.”
-Gandhi



Dostoyevsky on truth..............

“Above all, don't lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.” 
-Dostoyevsky

Hesse on truth..................

“Three things can not hide for long: the Moon, the Sun and the Truth.” 
-Hermann Hesse


photo courtesy of

Rand on truth.........................

“The truth is not for all men but only for those who seek it.” 
-Ayn Rand


Bohr on truth.......................

“The opposite of a correct statement is a false statement. But the opposite of a profound truth may well be another profound truth.” 
-Niels Bohr















image courtesy of

Aurelius on truth..............

“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we 
see is a perspective, not the truth.” 
-Marcus Aurelius

Elvis on truth....................

“Truth is like the sun. You can shut it out for a time, but it 
ain't going away.” 
-Elvis Presley


photo courtesy of

Churchill on truth..........

“Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened.” 
-Winston Churchill













Steinbeck on truth..................


“There's more beauty in truth, even if it is dreadful beauty.” 
-John Steinbeck





Orwell on truth....................

“In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” 
-George Orwell















photo courtesy of

Lennon on truth....................

“The more I see, the less I know for sure.” 
-John Lennon


Twain on Truth...............

“Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged 
to stick to possibilities; Truth isn't.” 
- Mark Twain




Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Speaking of clarinets..............

Benny Goodman......................................Sing, Sing, Sing

Be wary...............

Be wary of the man who urges an action in which he 
himself incurs no risk.
-Seneca


He probably wouldn't be a dean today...........

"The right to be left alone is the underlying principle of the Constitution's Bill of Rights."
-Erwin N. Griswold

About the Parable of the Talents.....

"Many people are not very happy with the way this story ends.  After all, it does not seem fair to take the little that the third servant had and give it to the servant who had ten.  But remember, life is not designed to give rewards in proportion to our need, it gives them in proportion to our level of deserve.  The moral of this story is that whatever life has handed to us, whether it is one talent or a hundred, it is our responsibility to do something with what we have been given!  That is how we change pennies into fortunes and obstacles into opportunity - by taking all that we have and all that we are and putting it to work."
-Jim Rohn,  The Five Major Pieces To The Life Puzzle

A picture of a bubble forming........

From the Sober Look blog comes a post suggesting that the recent revival of consumer credit isn't all that it is cracked up to be.  I believe that the Red Line represents mortgages.  The Green Line represents student loans.  Hope the kids are getting their monies worth out of college:
Legend:
1. Black: Nonrevolving consumer loans owned by commercial banks - these are mostly car loans
2. Purple: Nonrevolving consumer loans owned by finance companies - also car loans and leases
3. Red: Securitized consumer nonrevolving credit - this is mostly ABS.
4. And finally Green: Nonrevolving consumer loans owned by the federal government - student loans

thanks tyler

Truly personal finance..............

From Chris Guillebeau's The Art of Non-Conformity:

"1.  I happily exchange money for things I truly value.

2.  As much as possible, I don't exchange money for things I don't value.

3.  All things being equal, I value life experiences more than physical possessions.

4.  Investing in others is at least as important as my own long-term savings."

".....the key is to be deliberate in your own value judgments."

"There is no such thing as good debt.......Even the so-called good debt locks people into decisions that they may not be comfortable with for all the years they hold the debt."

"Instead of making the accumulation of wealth (capital) my goal, I decided to focus more on building my income in a manner that would allow me to do almost anything I wanted without the confines of a day job."

How to flow...............or, "all right doing is accomplished only in a state of true selflessness"

".....there is one scarcely avoidable danger that lies ahead of the pupil on his road to mastery.  Not the danger of wasting himself in idle self-gratification 'for the East has no aptitude for this cult of ego' but rather the danger of getting stuck in his achievement, which is confirmed by his success and magnified by his renown:  in other words, of behaving as if the artistic existence were a form of life that bore witness to its own validity.
     "The teacher foresees this danger.  Carefully and with the adroitness of a psychopomp he seeks to head off the pupil in time and to detach him from himself.  This he does by pointing out, casually and as though it were scarcely worth a mention in view of all that the pupil has already learned, that all right doing is accomplished only in a state of true selflessness, in which the doer cannot be present any longer as 'himself.'  Only the spirit is present, a kind of awareness which shows no trace of ego-hood and for that reason ranges without limit through all the distances and depths, with 'eyes that hear and ears that see.'
     "Thus the teacher lets his pupil voyage onward through himself."
-Eugen Herrigel,  Zen In The Art of Archery

thanks Jeff

The word for the day.................

Consulting Mr. Webster's New World College Dictionary wasn't
much help,  so turning to Dictionary.com we find:


psychopomp   n.   a person who conducts spirits or souls to
                                 the other world, as Hermes or Charon.

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Roaring Twenties.................

Bix Beiderbecke................................Clarinet Marmalade

About risk....................


"The torment of precautions often exceeds the dangers to be avoided.  It is sometimes better to abandon one's self to destiny."
-Napoleon Bonaparte



101 buts........................

No excuses accepted.  Nicholas Bate shows us how.
Full post here.  Excerpts here:

But: if only I were more creative; Mmmm: stop saying that about yourself and write every day. Ideas will appear.
But: I don't have enough time; Mmmm: you never will have: you have to make (often tough) choices. That's leadership. 
But: there's a recession on; Mmmm: your goal is get a greater slice of a shrinking pie. Do that by offering extraordinary value and by being different. 
But: what if I get it wrong; Mmmm: you'll learn. 
But: my share portfolio has collapsed;  Mmmm: forget it for a while. It will no doubt bounce back. The universe tends to work in cycles. Do not attach happiness nor a vital plan to stock prices

On noble boldness.............

It is better by noble boldness to run the risk of being subject to half the evils we anticipate than to remain in cowardly listlessness for fear of what might happen.
-Herodotus

"What kind of people do they thing we are...?"

Winston Churchill speaking to the U. S. Congress in 1942

I must have skipped class that day.....


Sunday, May 13, 2012

Sublime.......................................

Artie Shaw.................................Begin the Beguine

Great Speeches....................

Robert Kennedy, in Indianapolis, April 4, 1968, the night of Martin Luther King's assassination:

Two boys..................

"Two young boys were raised by an alcoholic father.  As they grew older, they moved away from that broken home, each going his own way in the world.  Several years later, they happened to be interviewed separately by a psychologist who was analyzing the effects of drunkedness on children in broken homes.  His research revealed that the two men were strikingly different from each other.  One was a clean-living teetotaler, the other a hopeless drunk like his father.  The psychologist asked each of them why he developed the way he did, and each gave an identical answer, 'What would you expect when you have a father like mine.'"
-Earl Nightingale, paraphrasing a story told by Hans Selye

...unmoved by the crowd......

".....These exceptional CEOs were known not for their flash or charisma but for extreme humility coupled with intense professional will.  In his influential book Good to Great, Collins tells the story of Darwin Smith, who in his twenty years as head of Kimberly-Clark turned it into the leading paper company in the world and generated stock returns more than four times higher than the market average.
     "Smith was a shy and mild-mannered man who wore J. C. Penney suits and nerdy black-rimmed glasses, and spent his vacations puttering around his Wisconsin farm by himself.  Asked by a Wall Street Journal reporter to describe his management style, Smith stared back for an uncomfortably long time and answered with a single word: 'Eccentric.'  But his soft demeanor concealed a fierce resolve.  Soon after being appointed CEO, Smith made a dramatic decisions to sell the mills that produced the core business of coated paper and invest instead in the consumer-paper-products industry, which he believed had better economics and a brighter future.  Everyone said this was a huge mistake, and Wall Street downgraded Kimberly-Clark's stock.  But Smith, unmoved by the crowd, did what he thought was right.  As a result the company grew stronger and soon outpaced its rivals.  Asked later about his strategy, Smith replied that he never stopped trying to become qualified for the job."
-Susan Cain, as excerpted from Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

There are about fifty ways to interpret this....

choose your own......................
cartoon by Fernando Krahn

On teaching................

"He would tell the kids to write whatever they would and could, and he'd edit their work, suggestions, really, kindly offered, and give them back and they'd have at it again. Not much of the kids' work was very good, but it was all a lot better at the end than at the beginning. That's teaching." 
-Sippican Cottage   full post is here

Sunday's verse.............

10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. 


11 Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. 


12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing,and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 


13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.


1You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.


The Holy Bible
New International Version
John 14:10-14