What I learned this week, September 28, 2012


‎”When I came into your life your life was over. It had a beginning, a middle, and an end. This is the end.”

–Anton Chigurh, No Country For Old Men (Cormac McCarthy)

Read even more good great evil lines here:

30 most evil lines from books



I’m still excited about the Cloud Atlas movie – be sure and read the book!

Putting Words in Halle Berry’s Mouth

Cloud Atlas author David Mitchell tells the New York Times what it was like seeing his novel come to life: “Wherever the ‘Cloud Atlas’ screenplay differed from ‘Cloud Atlas’ the novel, it did so for sound reasons that left me more impressed than piqued.”


It was a quarter-century ago today that the world was introduced to Inigo Montoya, Fezzik, Miracle Max, the albino dungeon keeper with a frog in his throat and an impressive clergyman with a speech impediment. To celebrate we bring you 25 Great Quotes from ‘The Princess Bride.’
 
 
“Life is pain, Highness, anyone who says differently is selling something.”

Why You Hate Cyclists

Partly because of jerks like me. But it’s mostly your own illogical mind.


Walter Russell Mead is one of my favorite political writers. He is very wise and his columns are well written and thought out. He has a point of view, but is not overly dogmatic about it. For example – this column on student college loans is burdened with a very provocative title, but has a lot of truth within:

Obama’s War On The Young

From the column:

The student loan program is a shining example of the blue social model in the midst of decay. It’s a program that used to work pretty well, but over time has morphed into a nightmare. Conceived at a time when college costs were low, a relatively limited number of mostly pretty qualified young people went to college and full employment made the transition from college to the workforce a straightforward process, the student loan program helped a generation of young people to a good start in life.

….

A sensible and helpful initiative gradually turned into a devouring beast. ….. They borrow more money than they can repay, or their school experience goes bad and the credential doesn’t work or they fail to earn it and President Obama’s hired debt collectors are turned loose on them to hound them into the grave.

Those who get in trouble, by the way, are disproportionately from poor and minority families, are immigrants, and are the first in their families to attempt higher ed. The young people that President Obama’s debt collectors are hounding most relentlessly are exactly the kind of people he hoped most to help.

Read the whole thing….


The Top 5 Best Uses of Hall & Oates’ “You Make My Dreams”


No Shades of Grey – Black & White Book Covers


The Icebergs is leaving! I am going to miss that painting. I’ve spent hours looking at it – even wrote a (very bad) short story about it.

Bon Voyage to The Icebergs


I was talking the other day about slide rules – I was a freshman in college when the switch from slide rules to calculators occurred. For my first… say, three semesters I always carried a slide rule to exams in case my calculator failed. A lot of strong, pleasant memories of my youth are associated with slide rules. I must not have gone out much.

Here’s a nice collection of the things.

Slideshow: Slide rules and charts – a personal collection

I think I had one of these


There is a workshop coming up in October on how to build a cargo bike.

Cyclesomatic 2012: Cargo Bike Build Workshop, October 13th – 14th

Put on by Tom’s Cargo Bikes… it looks really interesting.

What I learned this week, January 27, 2012

Did you miss(skip) the State of the Union Address? Don’t worry, John Stewart has it all for you.

You Opened With “I Killed Bin Laden”?  

“Does Rick Springfield open with ‘Jessie’s Girl’?”


Writing Tips from Coloumbia University

•Break Writing #1 – Write Every Day

•Break Writing #2 – Schedule Your Writing

•Break Writing #3 – Crappy First Drafts

•Break Writing #4 – The Last 5 Minutes

•Break Writing #5 – Resolve to Be a More Productive Writer (Happy New Year)

•Break Writing #6 – Reduce Distractions

•Break Writing #7 – Time Management for Writing

•Break Writing #8 – Time Management, Part 2

•Break Writing #9 – Writing with a Deadline

•Break Writing #10 – Binge Writing

•Break Writing #11 – Your writing environment

•Break Writing #12 – Are you writing the perfect dissertation?

•Break Writing #13 – Keeping yourself motivated

•Break Writing #14 – Making yourself accountable

•Break Writing #15 – Writing versus revising and editing

•Break Writing #16 – Stuck?

I can say with confidence that I didn’t learn anything in my college writing courses. But then, I didn’t go to Colombia.


Upcoming stuff to do:

Sunday, January 29 – Rollerderby!

Saturday, January 28 – Estate Sales

March 2-4 Bridge Opening

February 15, Dallashenge

February 18-19, Mardi Gras in the Bishop Arts

Suggestions accepted.


48 hours in Dallas, what to do.


A great method from “Developing Story Ideas” by Michael Rabiger. I don’t play CLOSAT as a game, but filling in all the items is a crackerjack method for building a story. 

CLOSAT

The Game called CLOSAT

Journal observations, your bank of ideas from which to write, will become playing cards for an instant story-making game called “CLOSAT.” To speed retrieval, tag each item in the margin with one or more of these CLOSAT categories:

  • C = description of Characters who could be used in a story.
  • L = interesting and visual Location.
  • O= curious or evocative Object.
  • S = loaded or revealing Situation.
  • A = unusual or revealing Act.
  • T = any Theme that intrigues you or that you see embodied in life.

CLOSAT Definitions and Examples

C (character) is anyone whose appearance, mannerisms, occupation, or activities suggest potential for a character in a story.

L (location) is any place that suggests a setting for something to happen.

O (object) is any that is worth recording because it is eloquent of place,time, situation, or owners. Examples:

S (situation) is a conjunction of circumstances or a predicament that puts its characters under some special pressure.

A (act) is any human deed or action that seems freighted with meaning or potential.

T (theme) is the central or dominating idea, seldom stated directly, that underlies the subject of a story and that comments on it.


There was a time when we all dreamed of flying. Now we are reduced to an addiction to watching other people flying on YouTube.


Want To Lose Weight For The New Year Of 2012 ???

1: The most simple tip to lose weight EVER is “Eat less and move more” – Common sense I know but it’s what every single weight loss plan is based on, TRUST ME !

2: Control the AMOUNT you eat at each meal time – make sure your meals are low in fat. This is not set in stone for instance you might want to also think about calories or portion control.

3: Get weighed – Measure your body, hips, thighes, chest, arms, neck……what can be measured can be managed. Always weigh-in on the same day in the same clothes on the same scales at the same time of day.

There is no point starting on a weight loss plan unless you get weighed first. This is very important. You need to be able to monitor your progress to know how well you are doing and that any changes in your lifestyle and eating are reaping the rewards or where you are making mistakes.

4 Keep a food diary – write down what you eat and what exercise you have done. Make sure you look at Calories n vs Calories out and try to ensure that Calories out is MORE than Calories in – If it helps you write down your feelings.

5.Smarter Shopping The golden rule here is to NEVER EVER go food shopping hungry. You make the decision to eat biscuits and crap food’s when you buy them in the shops, not when you take them from the cupboard. Don’t buy them in the first place.

6, Make a Goal list – write down achievable goals.



I like pens… but this is too much.

What I learned this week, August 12, 2011

Life is full of ridiculous obstacles to ordinary pleasures.


Here’s another didactic little story. There are these two guys sitting together in a bar in the remote Alaskan wilderness. One of the guys is religious, the other is an atheist, and the two are arguing about the existence of God with that special intensity that comes after about the fourth beer. And the atheist says: “Look, it’s not like I don’t have actual reasons for not believing in God. It’s not like I haven’t ever experimented with the whole God and prayer thing. Just last month I got caught away from the camp in that terrible blizzard, and I was totally lost and I couldn’t see a thing, and it was 50 below, and so I tried it: I fell to my knees in the snow and cried out ‘Oh, God, if there is a God, I’m lost in this blizzard, and I’m gonna die if you don’t help me.'” And now, in the bar, the religious guy looks at the atheist all puzzled. “Well then you must believe now,” he says, “After all, here you are, alive.” The atheist just rolls his eyes. “No, man, all that was was a couple Eskimos happened to come wandering by and showed me the way back to camp.”

——  David Foster Wallace

This is the comencement address he gave to the graduates of Kenyon College in 2005. Please, Read the Whole Thing. Just for me.


I learned
_ I wanted to buy one of these when I was a kid. I couldn’t afford it.


Ten Ways to Create a Plot Twist


Then and Now

Then

Barak Obama, 2008– Because if we are willing to work for it, and fight for it, and believe in it, then I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal; this was the moment when we ended a war and secured our nation and restored our image as the last, best hope on earth.

Now

Jay Carney, White House Spokesman, 2011–  He is working very closely with his senior economic advisors to come up with new proposals to help advance growth and job creation. He is working with members of Congress to help advance growth and job creation. And he will continue to do that. There are things that Congress can do now to create jobs, and they should; there are things that Congress will be able to do when they return from recess to help create jobs and spur growth, and they should. And he looks forward to working with Congress to do that.

There is no silver bullet and I have not heard one proposed by anyone in Washington or beyond that there is a silver bullet to help our economy grow faster or create jobs.”


They say that cabbage first sprang from the sweat of Jupiter, some drops of which fell on the earth. That bit of Rabelaisian trivia is not helping me enjoy my coleslaw at all.


TED talk – Jill Bolte Taylor’s stroke of insight

Jill Bolte Taylor got a research opportunity few brain scientists would wish for: She had a massive stroke, and watched as her brain functions — motion, speech, self-awareness — shut down one by one. An astonishing story.


Working for a rise, better my station
Take my baby to sophistication
She’s seen the ads, she thinks it’s nice
Better work hard – I seen the price
Never mind that it’s time for the bus
We got to work – an’ you’re one of us
Clocks go slow in a place of work
Minutes drag and the hours jerk
“When can I tell ’em wot I do?
In a second, maaan…oright Chuck!”
Wave bub-bub-bub-bye to the boss
It’s our profit, it’s his loss
But anyway lunch bells ring
Take one hour and do your thanng!
Cheeesboiger!
What do we have for entertainment?
Cops kickin’ Gypsies on the pavement
Now the news – snap to attention!
The lunar landing of the dentist convention
Italian mobster shoots a lobster

News Flash: Vacuum Cleaner Sucks Up Budgie

—-The Clash, Magnificent Seven