Saturday, May 31, 2014

Sparks fly..............................................

The Eagles.................................................Witchy Woman

Well, there is that....................................














"People who count their chickens before they are hatched act very wisely because chickens run about so absurdly that it's impossible to count them accurately."
-Oscar Wilde

Uh-oh................................

An essay on faking cultural literacy can be found here:

"It’s never been so easy to pretend to know so much without actually knowing anything. "

thanks

Conformity...........................























“I think the reward for conformity is that everyone likes you except yourself.” 
-Rita Mae Brown

About that "single payer" pivot.................

"Apparently, reports of the VA’s success were extremely premature."

Via Meadia says, "It seems that the entire system may be rotten."  Full post is here.  Aren't we about due for some good news on the health care front?

Fifty years ago.............................

What's My Line?............................................Liberace

I'm certain he is correct.........................


The Dog























“You think those dogs will not be in heaven! I tell you they will be there long before any of us.” 
-Robert Louis Stevenson

About those "best sellers"........................

"Popular is not the same as important, or often, not the same as good."
-Seth Godin, as excerpted from here

Thank you.....................................















“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” 
-Gilbert Keith Chesterton

What is the dog thinking......................?




















source and larger image here

Friday, May 30, 2014

It's all right...........................................

The Beatles.....................................Here Comes The Sun

 

Works too.....................................


Be the change..................................























thanks hugh

Flow.....................................

































"In every part and corner of our life, to lose oneself is to be a gainer;  to forget oneself is to be happy."
-Robert Louis Stevenson

photo via

Fifty years ago.........................

The Reflections.........................Just Like Romeo and Juliet

From the Archives..........................
































































From the Archives, which now contain more than eight years of wondrousness

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

In the summer of 1850, in Hyde Park in London, there arose a most extraordinary structure:  a giant iron-and-glass greenhouse covering nineteen acres of ground and containing within its airy vastness enough room for four St. Paul's Cathedrals.  For the short time of its existence, it was the biggest building on Earth.  Known formally as the Palace of the Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations, it was incontestably magnificent, but all the more so for being so sudden, so startlingly glassy, so gloriously and unexpectedly there.  Douglas Jerrold, a columnist for the weekly magazine Punch, dubbed it the Crystal Palace, and the name stuck.
-Bill Bryson,  At Home:  A Short History of Private Life

Two interesting paragraphs....................

    "So the risks were considerable and keenly felt, yet after only a few days of fretful hesitation the commissioners approved Paxton's plan.  Nothing - really, absolutely nothing - says more about Victorian Britain and its capacity for brilliance than that the century's most daring and iconic building was entrusted to a gardener.  Paxton's Crystal Palace required no bricks at all - indeed, no mortar, no cement, no foundations.  It was just bolted together and sat on the ground like a tent.  This was not merely an ingenious solution to a monumental challenge but also a radical departure from anything that had ever been tried before."

----------------------------------------------------------------

     "Allied with this was the timely abolition of two long-standing taxes:  the window tax and the glass tax (which, strictly speaking, was an excise duty).  The window tax dated from 1696 and was sufficiently punishing that people really did avoid putting windows in buildings where they could.  The bricked-up window openings that are such a feature of many period buildings in Britain today were once usually painted to look like windows.  (It is sometimes rather a shame that they aren't still.)  The tax, sorely resented as 'a tax on air and light,' meant that many servants and others of constrained means were condemned to live in airless rooms."

Paxton's Crystal Palace.........................

Paxton's first sketch




Thursday, May 29, 2014

Sunlight to moonlight.............................

The Marmalade........................................Reflections Of My Life

 

The not-so-Simple Village Undertaker.......

..............takes steps to undo his powerlessness on a regular basis.  One of the proven successful ways of doing this is to share, in a safe environment, stories of experience, strength and hope.  Back story here.  Excerpt here:

Allow me to introduce myself, I’m the disease of addiction, cunning, baffling, powerful…that’s me. I have killed millions, and I’m pleased. I love to catch you with the element of surprise. I love to pretend that I am your friend and lover. I have given you comfort, have I not? Wasn’t I there when you were lonely? When you wanted to die, didn’t you call me? I was there. I love to see you hurt. I make you so numb you can neither hurt nor cry. You can’t feel anything at all. This is true glory.

Mindfulness............................































"We are addicted to the constant digital stream, often peering gape-mouthed into the sordid details of other people’s lives; in the process we have checked-out of reality, neglecting our own life so pregnant with potential and meaning."
-excerpted from this post on David Kanigan's Thrive, channeling Brendon Burchard

Another wonder...........................

..........of the Intertunnel:  the Radiating Blossom tumblr.



































thanks david

Beyond my capacity................................


















via

Fifty years ago.......a twofer.........................

Brenda Lee...............................................................More




Frank Sinatra..............................................................More

Careful what you wish for ....


















Too much scheduling makes Jack a dull boy.  Balance please.

A bridge too far...........................

"People go to great lengths to avoid paying tax.  One popular trick in the Middle Ages was to become a monk;..."
-as excerpted from this essay on "behavioural economics" boosting tax compliance in The Economist

Focus....................................part two


Eventually............................

.......................there will be no place to hide from "Big Data."

     "Monsanto's prescriptive planting system, FieldScripts, had its first trials last year and is now on sale in four American states.  Its story begins in 2006 with a Silicon Valley startup, the Climate Corporation.  Set up by two former Google employees, it used remote sensing and other cartographic techniques to map every field in America (all 25m of them) and superimpose on that all the climate information that it could find.  By 2010 its database contained 150 billion soil observations and 10 trillion weather simulation points.
     "The Climate Corporation planned to use these data to sell crop insurance.  But last October Monsanto bought the company for about $1billion - one of the biggest takeovers of a data firm yet seen.  Monsanto, the world's largest hybrid-seed producer, has a library of hundreds of thousands of seeds, and terabytes of data on their yields.  By adding these to Climate Corporation's soil-and-weather data base, it produced a map of America which says which seed will grow best in which field, under what conditions."

-Here is Schumpeter's full essay, "Digital Disruption on the farm"

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Dream music..............................

The Rippingtons........................................Black Diamond

A new release from one of our favorites, the house band at Sippican Cottage.......

Unorganized Hancock..................................Minor Swing




Back story here.  A few excerpts here:


" ... so I decided to teach him swing drumming. I cannot play the drums properly, but that doesn't matter. I'm his music teacher."

"What possessed the big one to try Django Reinhardt in the first place is beyond me. I think he got tired of people asking him if he could play Sultans of Swing. I think this is his way of offering proof that yes, he could; and no, he won't."

Seems like the boys could use some upgrades in equipment.  One of the neatest things is, if you hit the tip jar and send them some spare change, in a few days the post man will deliver you a hand-written thank you note from the boys.  Try it, you'll like it.  Trust me.

On asking right questions.....................























"Computers are useless;  they can only give you answers."
-Pablo Picasso

cartoon via

The future IS bright........................

Here's one way to end all the fuss about commencement speakers:






















cartoon via

Hmmm...............................






















thanks jonco

Computer operator error...............

............caused the absence of the daily "Fifty years ago" posting yesterday.  In atonement, we double up today and bring you this The Atlantic.com pictorial essay of 1964.  There are, appropriately enough, 50 photos.  Via their selection, the editors would have you believe it was quite the special year.  I was only twelve, but since the epic collapse of the Phillies in the fall of 1964 scarred my psyche for years, who am I to argue.
...the unfinished Verrazano-Narrows steel suspension bridge
 over New York Harbor on January 6, 1964.

Fifty years ago...........................

The Animals.....................................House of the Rising Sun

Listen..................................

When a man whose marriage was in trouble sought his advice, the Master said, "You must learn to listen to your wife."
     The man took the advice to heart and returned after a month to say that he had learned to listen to every word his wife was saying.
     Said the Master with a smile, "Now go home and listen to every word she isn't saying."

-Anthony de Mello,  One Minute Wisdom, as channel through The Spirituality of Imperfection

Uh-oh......................................

"The world is a scene changing so rapidly that it takes every bit of intuitive ability you have, every brain cell each one of you has, to make the sensible decision about what to do next. You cannot rely upon what you have been taught. All you have learned from history is old ways of making mistakes. There is nothing that history can tell you about what we must do tomorrow. Only what we must not do."
-Edwin H. Land (1909-1991)

Extremism..........................

"If you wish to go to extremes, let it be in sweetness, patience, humility and charity.”  
-Saint Philip Neri

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

It was more important.......................

Eric Burdon and the Animals.......................When I Was Young

Today's discussion question.................

..............can humans be happy living lives without problems?



Fair......................................



















“The problem is not that there are problems. The problem is expecting otherwise and thinking that having problems is a problem.” 
-Theodore Rubin


cartoon via

Ungovernable...........................
























“Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.” 
-Groucho Marx

cartoon via

Get up.......................................



















“Sometimes life knocks you on your ass... get up, get up, get up!!! Happiness is not the absence of problems, it's the ability to deal with them.” 
-Steve Maraboli


cartoon via

All night..........................................

























“If a problem is fixable, if a situation is such that you can do something about it, then there is no need to worry. If it's not fixable, then there is no help in worrying. There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever.” 
-14th Dalai Lama

Disguised...........................
























“We are continually faced by great opportunities brilliantly disguised as insolvable problems.” 
-Lee Iacocca

Books............................................

























“Generally speaking, books don't cause much harm. Except when you read them, that is. Then they cause all kinds of problems.” 
-Pseudonymous Bosch, The Name of This Book Is Secret


cartoon via

Change course..............................



















“Every problem is a gift - without problems we would not grow.” 
-Anthony Robbins


cartoon via

Just for today............................



















“The key is this: Meet today's problems with today's strength. Don't start tackling tomorrow's problems until tomorrow. You do not have tomorrow's strength yet. You simply have enough for today.” 
-Max LucadoTraveling Light: Releasing the Burdens You Were Never Intended to Bear

cartoon via

Only answer...............................

























“I know that love is ultimately the only answer to mankind's problems....” 
-Martin Luther King Jr.