March 22, 2005

Smile. Tomorrow will be worse

When I was younger my personal motto was "Smile tomorrow will be worse". This strip captures my emotion very accurately.

Posted at 09:56 AM

March 14, 2005

NY Architecture

View from the hotel Roosevelt (45th and Madison) where I usually stay in NYC. The contrast in architectures is very well expressed in this image.

Posted at 09:11 PM

February 11, 2005

Weltschmerz

I've often marveled at the ability of German words to capture complex emotional, organizational concepts. But this morning I realized that I do in fact live weltschmerz on a daily basis. This phenomenon has been going on for at least 3 months now and there remains dim hope of it dissipating.

Posted at 09:41 AM

January 25, 2005

Squeaky Shoe Solutions

Home shoe repair: how to fix squeaky shoes

The web is a nice place!

Posted at 03:12 PM

June 07, 2004

A note about notes

Ask MetaFilter | Community Weblog

Posted at 02:48 PM

February 06, 2004

Pericoronitis

It started the Monday before last. A sharp pain arrested all my senses and brought my attention to bear on the right quadrant of my lower jar. Somewhere, beneath the pink gumscape a third molar was battering my teeth and gum, seeking exit. All thoughts failed to compute. It was amazing how pain tunes out every single competing thought in my mind and my attention span suddenely increases.

I nursed my cheek with a hand, as though that would make a difference. When the meeting recessed for 15 minutes I scrambed through my organizer searching for my dentist's number. As the phone rang, I reasoned with myself. "C'mon don't be a wuss. You don't have time for this now. Put it off. You've lasted this before" - Back in college, my lower left molar had attempted the same attention grabbing. I drowned off the pain with Tylenol as I trudged through the semester, knowing fully well I couldn't afford a dentist. When the phone was answered I had an appointment for next Tuesday.

I continued through the week occasionally being tormented by sharp spasms of pain. The days were ok. The nights were terrible. If I went to bed without sufficiently numbing myself then I would awake, with alacrity. My eyes wide open, body crouched expecting another sharp spasm to send me convulsing off the bed. I would shuffle nervously downstairs to the kitchen to seek a chemical combination that would stave off the pain. While chewing I favored my left side. The meetings ended on Friday. The pain got worse and more frequent.

I only had to last the weekend. I was sure it would be no problem. Sat morning, the articulation of my jaw was limited. Funny, I mused, noting how my index finger fit snugly between the front row of my teeth. At lunch I tore pieces of bread and squished them into small cubes so that I could squeeze them through the opening. My left teeth chewed gratefully.

Sun morning, the movement reduced. There was now only enought space for a spoon. The lower right side had stiffened considerably. I made myself a smoothie for lunch. I scooped out some yoghurt into the blender and attempted to lick the spoon in a time honored tradition of waste-reduction. My tongue was entrapped between calcite gates of hell, beating futiley. I had to wash the spoon, yoghurt still dripping off it.

Mon morning. The entry for a spoon was now barred. Amazingly, I could still speak. The dentist finally saw me at 2pm. I told the assistant who was trying to gain access to my mouth, that I could only open my mouth "so much". She waited for a minute, before realizing the full potential had already been reached. A painful setup for an external X-Ray began. I had to bite between my teeth and piece of plastic that set the reference for the machine. Parting the two rows of teeth was an ordeal.

The dentist came by. He tried an examination that concluded rapidly. He prescriped Clindamycin (300mg) 4 times a day and Vicodeine (for pain when required).

I waited at the grocery store while my prescription was filled. I walked aisle after aisle of food not averting my eyes from any food item. Suddenely, being in the grocery store was no different than walking the women's section of a department store. I was curious purely for academic reason. The merchandise no longer applied to me.

Armed with advice from the pharmacist to always ensure my stomach was not empty at medicine intake I returned home. As it turned out pushing a capsule between my teeth was much harder than the dinky aspirin tablets. By the evening I had trouble swallowing as well, making it harder for me to eat. I caved in and took a Vicodeine. It took a little while, before the label - Do not operate machinery, was clear to me. The room spun, in a nice sort of a way as I walked. My eyes drooped. I felt as though I had had a few glasses of wine too many. I crashed into my bed and slept for a couple of hours. I awoke with no remorse.

Tuesday was no better. I had a tough time swallowing. Every meal was tough. For breakfast I had a smoothie, for lunch I had soup. For dinner I had a coffee mix in milk. Food no longer appealed to me.

Wed and Thu seemed to make me better. I hadn't worked out in a week. My throat stopped hurting when I swallowed, now it was something lower in my neck. A fluid of some sort accumulated in my mouth every 15 seconds. I reasoned it was the bacteria being flushed out. I slept with a cup on the bedside table. Whenever, the fluid interrupted my breathing sending me into a coughing spell I would wake and drain the contents of my mouth into the cup. I think at other times my mouth drooled at night. Emptying the clear, viscous liquid on my shirt.

The liquid stopped, oozing. The throat quit hurting. Its Friday night. I still can't open my mouth. People ask me if I need anything. I have all the smoothies and soup I can get. I'd like to eat something thicker than yoghurt. Thats what I'd really like.

Posted at 10:56 PM | Comments (1)

January 06, 2004

Index of painters and paintings

WebMuseum: Artist index

Posted at 08:54 AM

December 22, 2003

The myth of Orpheus

Orpheus


Orpheus, son of Apollo was the greatest musician and poet of Greek myth. Upon the death of his wife, Eurydice, he went down to Hades and begged for her return. She was returned to him under the condition that on their journey out of the netherworld, he was not to look back. Just before reaching the surface, Orpheus did succumb and turned to look back and Eurydice was snatched from him.

Posted at 09:32 PM

August 29, 2003

Evolutionary Psychology

Evolutionary Psychology Primer by Leda Cosmides and John Tooby

An interesting article on Evolutionary psychology.

Posted at 07:33 PM

February 21, 2003

They Marched

They marched on. Some in step. Others in many steps. Of all shapes and sizes. Some had 4 legs. Others had hundreds of legs. Some were big. Others small. Yet, they maintained order. They began to assembly in concentric circles. First larger, then smaller. An army of insects had arrived. Some scorpions stood by their traditional prey with a soldiers professionalism. The prey stood by their hunters with a sense of mutual self respect. Another place would have seen them in a race for their life. This was different.

The next row of marching creatures came in. They merged with the assorted shapes and sizes of the first battalion. They formed another row. Ants, bugs, beetles every one puffing out their thorasic cages in a display of militarty discipline. Millions of tiny feet marching to some unknown buzz?

What was their target? A huge cake of untold calories lay in the center of the huge concentric circle that being formed. As more and more creatures piled in, laying a seige on the rich gooey, choclatey coronary causer. Finally the circles were as close as they could be to the target. Almost on synch the probocises were raised in preparation for the impending attack.

A huge hand emerged from the sky and lifted the quarry away from the circle of insects.

Posted at 08:33 AM | Comments (0)

February 14, 2003

Amicus Bonnum

You know you have a good friend when you call and ask that Happy Birthday be sung to you and the friend complies without the slightest of hesitation.

true. Thanks!

Posted at 07:46 AM | Comments (0)

February 12, 2003

A retail experience

The girl behind the counter punched at the keys on the register. The computer responded with numerous beeps. Every beep sounded compliant. On cue the cash register opened and her left hand reached out to brace her against the impact. Her fingers worked through the containers filled with varied green paper currency. She handed the old man 3 bills and a note she tore from the register. He seemed satisfied with the transaction. She took the bag of clothes that he had left on the counter. He almost walked into the sign that said "Customer Service" on his way away from the counter.

The girl put the bag away with the rest of the returns of the evenings. I walked up to the counter. She smiled and asked "What can I do for you?".

"I need to buy a space heater. Is there any way you can tell me if you have any in stock. I couldn't find any"

She replied with a vacant look "I don't have a computer that can tell me that". He gaze swept across the table inviting mine to follow it and confirm her statement.

I continued "Can you call another store for me and find out if they have some in stock"

Her vacant look was now occupied with an attitude I can only describe as "hey-I-won't-have-to-do-anything-on-this-one". Her arm now swept the counter with enthusiasm as she said "I don't have a telephone".

I smiled and countered "I have a phone, can you give me the number for another store"

She hesitated, but continued "Sure, which store did you need"

I pulled out my mobile phone as I said "183/620 would be great". Hope was rising fast. The freezing temperature outside could be tamed at last I reasoned.

Alas, things aren't so easy. She said "I only have the number for RoundRock memorized", mentioning the name of a town 50 miles North of my city. It felt colder all of a sudden. Shoulders drooping I started stepping away from the counter. "If I called them could they tell me if they had any in stock" I asked.

"Probably not" came the answer supplemented with a big smile. It got awfully cold. The outside seemed to rush in through the glass doors and windows like they weren't there. As I walked out the "Wal*Mart" sign flickered. Is it any wonder, I mused, that they changed their line from "Our people make the difference" to "We sell for less".

Always. Wal*Mart

Posted at 10:16 AM | Comments (0)

February 09, 2003

Dream World

"Clear", a voice sounded. "Clear" echoed a voice from another room. The soldier returned back to the main room. A lamp hung from the ceiling swung, casting eeiry shadows on the walls. The soldier's voice was strong and quiet. A tense but in control aura emanated from the soldiers gathered in the room. Their mission was to destroy Iraq's essential infrastructure before the rest of the United States Military showed up to the party. However, something hadn't gone right. This wasn't an easy mission. It sacrificed the safety of its members in return for the advantage of surprise.

Now, what was I doing here? I couldn't fathom how I was an advantage to this effort in any sense of the word. But here I was. The house was being surrounded by Iraqi regulars. Our surprise had evaporated with the loud noise of the Apache helicopter as it dropped off the team. Now what was going to happen? The urgency and caution in the Arabic being spoken outside needed no translation. On cue, a bead of sweat rolled down the commander's neck. Surprise was a given assumption. But the surprise was on our part.

I moved the blanket to be greeted by the rush of cool morning air in my lungs. I blinked a few times to chase away the remnants of this weird and unpredictable dream. As I rolled in bed, I wondered what could possibly have triggered a dream of this nature. As I looked at my night table I found the receipt from yesterday's regular fill up at the gas station. $1.65/gallon for premium unleaded! My subconscious was ready to lead the charge into Iraq to stop this outrage!

Posted at 09:38 PM | Comments (0)

November 19, 2002

Must See

"A must see". "If you see only one meteoroid shower this century then the Leonid shower is the one". The haze clears. The subliminal messages are goading my weary body out of bed. The clock registers 4:15.

I pull on warm clothing in anticipation of the cold and step outside. My mouth continues masticating the remnants of a slice of bread. I look up at the sky but see trees instead. I amble towards my car. I get in, and I am soon heading out towards the back roads. A few miles later I'm on an highway running through sparse hill country landscape. I peer up into the sky while keeping a watchful eye on the road.

I see cars pulled to the side of the road. Hopeful eyes gazing heavenwards. I pull over. Step out and look up. Its been a while. I don't recall having looked up in a long time. At one point in my life when the desire to be an astrophysicist was strong I would gaze up every night in hopeful anticipation of one day being able to decipher the mysteries of the sky. I was nine then. Things have changed a bit since then. I see nothing. I get back in the car and head to my original destination. A road that leads up a hill which offers unfettered view of the sky without the distraction of street lights.

I muse that its quite likely people will call the cops on me. It's not every day that someone shows up at 4am and looks up at the sky. I reach my destination. I get out of the car and take my position leaning against the hood of the car. I use the sleeve of my sweat shirt to thaw my nose. The crick in my neck gets worse with each passing minute. I tell myself that I will see something for all the work I've put into coming here. This is probably the same mix of human psychology and frustration that goes through the minds of people who corroborate UFO sightings. Every wants to say they've seen the little green men and their contraptions for anal inquiries.

Out of the corner of my eye I see a flash of light. I turn quickly to the source. Nothing. I wonder if it was the reflection of a distant street light playing tricks on my mind. Then again. This time a much more subdued version of the earlier occurrence. Within a few minutes the pattern is more reliable. Varying combinations of bright and dull streaks paint the sky momentarily. Leonid Meteoroids.

Half hour of astronomical sight-seeing later I get back into my car. My neck welcomes the change in position. On to the next heavenly body sighting. Wed night network television plays host to Victoria Secret's annual lingerie show.

Posted at 09:31 AM | Comments (0)

November 17, 2002

Houston

Houston is one big strip mall. I enter the middle lane. I move the lever to turn off the turn signals. The clickety-clack of the turn signal dissolves into silence. The regular clip of the tires against the concrete is once again audible.

From all sides they scream out. Bright, big neon signs proclaiming similar messages in quickly digestible portions. Outback Steakhouse. Pappadeux's. Denny's. Macaroni Grill. Every now and then I catch a glimpse of a non-standard sign. Rita's Mexican Food. Vying for attention. Drowning in a sea of tran-american corporate branding.

I watch them dissappear into the Texas sunset in the rear view mirror. In a few miles the scene will form again. The same stores. Bed Bath and Beyond. Linen's and Things. Best Buy. Circuit City. Each with their distinct logo and symbols, proclaiming their desire to help in our conspicuous consumption. Capitalism's promise: to sell us what we don't need at 20% off.

Posted at 10:11 PM | Comments (0)

October 26, 2002

Baseball - an introduction

The world series is now 3-3. Anaheim takes on San Francisco Sunday night in game 7.

Strange enough, the best introduction to sport is on the other side of the pond.
Baseballuk.com

Posted at 11:09 PM

October 22, 2002

Gazpacho recipe

A recipe I am yet to try:

3 peeled cucumbers
1 garlic clove
3 cups chicken broth
3 cups nonfat, plain yogurt
3 tablespoons white vinegar
salt to taste

Blend ingredients in a food processor or blender. Serve immediately or chill. Garnish with chopped tomatoes, green onions, chopped parsley and a few toasted almonds as desired before serving. Serve cold.

Posted at 12:22 PM

October 09, 2002

no comment

ROTFLMAO

Posted at 11:31 PM

September 13, 2002

Entering accents and special characters

If you want to enter accents and special character on an English keyboard this link will be useful:

Special Characters

The one drawback: Once you turn on the US International keyboard the computer stops to think each time you enter one of the 'trigger' characters.

Posted at 10:44 AM

September 05, 2002

Inverted Pyramid

In journalism a concept called the inverted pyramid merges penmanship and common sense. News stories are written so that all the facts are presented in the first paragraph. This way the reader gets all the information from the first paragraph and can decide on reading the rest of the article. It also allows editors to shorten the story when presented with space constraints.

Posted at 11:21 AM

September 03, 2002

Trial

Jemand mußte Josef K. verleumdet haben, denn ohne daß er etwas Böses getan hätte, wurde er eines Morgens verhaftet

Thus begins Franz Kafka's "Der Proceß" or "The Trial". Read a summary if you dont have the time to read the real thing. My Labor day weekend was spent following Joseph K. as he navigated through the quagmire of legal hurdles that were thrown his way. I wonder if it's heresy to wish that Max Bord had executed Kafka's will as written.

Posted at 04:22 PM | Comments (0)

August 22, 2002

Triple Filter Test


In ancient Greece, Socrates was reputed to hold
knowledge in high esteem.

One day an acquaintance met the great philosopher and said, "Do you
know what I just heard about your friend?"
Hold on a minute," Socrates replied. "Before telling
me anything, I'd like you to pass a little test. It's
called the Triple Filter Test."

Triple filter?"
That's right," Socrates continued. "Before you talk to me about my
friend, it might be a good idea to take a moment and filter what
you're going to say. That's why I call it the triple filter test.
The first filter is TRUTH. Have you made absolutely
sure that what you are about to tell me is true?"

No," the man said, "actually I just heard about it
and..."

All right," said Socrates. "So you don't really know
if it's true or not. Now let's try the second filter,
the filter of GOODNESS. Is what you are about to tell me about my
friend something good?"
No, on the contrary..."
So," Socrates continued, "you want to tell me
something bad about him, but you're not certain it's
true. You may still pass the test though, because
there's one filter left: the filter of USEFULNESS. Is
what you want to tell me about my friend going to be
useful to me?"

No, not really."
Well," concluded Socrates, "if what you want to tell
me is neither true nor good nor even useful, why tell
it to me at all?"

This is why Socrates was a great philosopher & held in such high
esteem. Use this triple filter each time you hear loose talk about any
one you know.

Unknown Author

Posted at 10:10 PM

Online behavior

The actual link is kinda long and so I'll summarize it. Google has a service called Google Answers where you can post questions and offer money for a solution.

A guy at M$ Games posted a puzzle that his boss presented to the group. Every month he gives them a state. The states are in a specific order. To crack the puzzle produce the remaining states in the right order. Each guess costs you $1. The pot stands at > $2000 (For more details read the link).

https://answers.google.com/answers/main?cmd=threadview&id=50956


What I found interesting in this link was the way these people worked together. They realized that they couldn't solve the problem by themselves so they started a process of creating domain experts and sending data to domain experts. One person would track down numerical patterns in the puzzle the other was looking at Sports etc. What struck me was that this was in some sense a view into how Open Source development works? If online co-operation does work what's the best way to leverage it?

Posted at 03:25 PM

August 20, 2002

Norse Mythology

My search started with Richard Wagner's Die Walküre. I was trying to find the background for the Valkyries and ended up at Norse Mythology.


Glossary:

Odin: Head of Aesir. Aesir was the race of the chief Gods of Asgard (abode of the Gods)
Valkyries (Choosers of the slain): female warriers that selected the bravest of the fallen warriors
Valhalla(Hall of Heroes): The great hall of Odin where the Vakyries bring the warriers.

Posted at 05:00 PM

August 18, 2002

Buddhism Glossary

Amitabha - Buddha of the western paradise. In Mahayana buddhism people are reborn in a paradise

Prajnaparamita - Perfection of Wisdom. One of the major texts of Mahayana Buddhism

sunyata - emptiness
dukha - suffering
trishna - attachment
anatman - no self

Zen terminology
Doan - the person that sounds the bell that marks the beginning and end of the zazen period
Fukudo - Strikes the han to signifiy that zazen is about to begin
jiko - carries incense for the speaker


sources
timeline
dictionary
tibetan buddhism
buddhist information

Posted at 09:15 PM

August 15, 2002

Who's a Freak?

I've often wondered what a chronological history of Michael Jackson's face would look like. Some one put it together. Why could'nt he have stopped somewhere long ago?

Posted at 04:55 PM | Comments (0)

August 12, 2002

Endangered Grammar

The Aportophe protection society has its say on the matter.

Posted at 02:50 PM

August 11, 2002

Who's the pagan now?

It's taken for granted that development of monotheism marks the maturation of psychology of religion for the human race. But is this really true? Lets peer beneath the veneer of a single omnipotent God and see what we find.

If there is only one God, then what is Satan doing hounding us in monotheistic religions? If God is omnipotent why isn't Satan crushed and reduced to smithreens for attempting to lead God's flock astray?

A: Aha. You reach too far my child. Satan is the head of the Hell Inc. which is your destination in the afterworld for the insolence you display in this one.

So God being all-loving and all can't be stuck with the reputation of subjecting his children as we are all called to heinous eternal punishment. The persona of Satan (aka bad cop) will take the blame for all evil leaving God's reputation untarnished. God with his power of omnipotence dictates the acts that Satan may infact perform. So what we're saying is that there isn't really one God (or if there is, then Satan is also God since Satan doesnt have an independent existence). (To the reader: I've committed grave offences of philosophical inconsistency here. I'm only aware of some.) Throw in the angels and other creatures and you have in some ways replicated Zeus and his lesser Gods?

What about the Catholic church's attempt to build around Mary? If the confusing power sharing agreement of the Holy Trinity were not enough, the Catholic church has elevated Mary to an exalted position as well. You may now pray to Mary for intercession. Mary is another interesting character in this cosmic drama. A woman who has been impregnated by God (won't Zeus be proud. While his name may no longer be remembered his sexual lust for the female human remains entrenced in society).

Let's not leave Islam out of our party. Islam showers God with enough attributes to make a Viking blush. Omniscience is one attribute of God. If God is omniscient can he tell what we're going to do? If so, does that eradicate our posession of free will? If so then how can we be responsible for our actions in a pre-ordained, pre-destined world? (another crass simplification in my reasoning. Should I be prescribed a 100 Hail Marys?)

As we wrap up our sojourn through guilt country lets make a stop in the Eastern hemisphere. In Karmic philosophy "what goes around, comes around". Are Hinduism and Buddhism providing us anything besides a simple adage with no teeth. Yes coincidences are nasty, but pinning causality of a distant past as being responsible is quite convenient. Lest, the current life time not prove sufficiently long enough we'll leave you in a vicious cycle of re-births to make sure the Karmic account books balance.

fin.

Posted at 09:35 PM | Comments (0)

July 05, 2002

hot dog!

Attached is the text of a report from the International Hot Dog eating contest. I wonder if the folks at the Onion wrote this up.

Accusations hurled at hot dog contest
By Darren Rovell
ESPN.com

NEW YORK -- On Thursday, competitive eating made a lot of progress in proving that it is indeed a sport. Like the NFL, NHL and NBA, it apparently needs instant replay.


Takeru Kobayashi, center, won the title with 50½ hot dogs, while Eric Booker, right, finished second with 26.
Japanese professional speed-eater Takeru "The Tsunami" Kobayashi destroyed the competition for the second consecutive year at the Nathan's Famous Fourth of July international hot dog eating contest, scarfing down 50½ hot dogs and buns in 12 minutes.

The 24-year-old Kobayashi, who weighed 113 pounds before the contest and almost 120 pounds after, bettered his 2001 world-record performance by half a hot dog despite having to fight off the 100-degree heat. He also covered the spread of Internet gamblers, who favored him to win by 20 hot dogs.

But in the final seconds, with many of the 20 competitors already satisfied with their effort, Kobayashi's body heaved as his cheeks ballooned with remnants. Since visible regurgitation during competition means a disqualification, many in the crowd cried foul and waited for the title to be given to Eric "Badlands" Booker, who finished second with 26 hot dogs.

Seconds after the contestants were told to put down their hot dogs, Kobayashi's individual judge, Gersh Kuntzman of the New York Post, and Mike Devito, the commissioner of the International Federation of Competitive Eating (which sanctioned the contest), ruled that the victory was official.

"It's the Raiders-Patriots game all over again," joked Rich Shea, president of the IFOCE.

But instant replay would not overturn the fumble, as it did during the AFC divisional playoffs.


Kobayashi captured the coveted Mustard Yellow Belt for the second consecutive year.
"If you suffer a roman-method incident (the IFOCE's term for regurgitating) during the contest, it's an immediate DQ," said Rich's brother George, the chairman of the federation, which would later review the tapes as a formality. "My understanding is this not only happened after the contest, but that none of the hot dogs and buns actually hit the table or the floor."

Footage captured by ESPN confirms that some hot dog slush did spill through Kobayashi's fingers and pieces of liquid bun spouted out of his nose, but footage shows time had already expired.

"I feel good I got over the 50 mark, even by a half," said Kobayashi, through an interpreter. Others weren't as satisfied.

"He should be disqualified, period," said "Hungry" Charles Hardy, a 5-foot-11, 360-pound New York City corrections officer who had 20 hot dogs. "Eric should have that belt. I mean, I had people in Atlanta call me on my cell phone saying they saw it on TV." While eating a 15-foot sushi roll during the Glutton Bowl on Fox in February, Hardy was disqualified for regurgitating.

"I was standing right next to him, but I was too focused on my game," said Booker, a 6-foot-5, 400-pound New York City transit conductor. "I didn't want to suffer the mistakes I had last year, where I was looking around to see what everyone was doing. It was just me and the dogs."

Eating only 26 hot dogs was a somewhat disappointing effort for Booker, who set a new U.S. record of 28 on June 2. Three hours before the competition, Booker boasted that he hoped to "eat one for every state in the union." After seeing Kobayashi use his "Solomon" method -- where he splits the hot dog in half and puts both pieces in his mouth at the same time -- Booker employed a new method this year: "The Double Japanese" (putting two hot dogs in his mouth at one time, then dipping two buns in water and putting them in his mouth at the same time).

Controversy and the international hot dog eating contest actually go hand-and-hand.


Last year, there was another controversy surrounding Kobayashi.

"These (American) guys last year were yelling and screaming drugs, drugs, drugs," said Rich Shea, who noted that contestants accused Kobayashi of using muscle relaxers. "I was with him all morning, and I've seen no evidence of it. As the international federation, it would be our duty to bring drug testing into this sport, but there's just no evidence."

In 1997, when the first of three Japanese champions came on the scene at Coney Island, Shea said competitors complained he had two stomachs. "No one has two stomachs," Shea said. "We're all born with the same stomach."

Posted at 01:18 PM | Comments (0)

June 26, 2002

The religious equity market

A conversation with a friend this afternoon meandered into the world of equity markets. He expressed dismay at the nadir being skirted by a certain company and stated the opinion that he didnt reserve any hope that the stock would rebound. I retorted "have faith". Hardly had the words escaped my lips that the implication of my words dawned upon my impressionable mind. I mused that my suggestion was almost religious sounding. He replied that when choosing the place to put his faith he would go with God over the stock market. I noted that while we knew the stock market existed the same could not be categorically be said about God.

A few hours later it dawns upon me that the stock market and religion are similar in more ways than one. The stock market requires investment of cash/money. The religious market requires investment of time, perseverence and above all belief. Why do we play the markets? The stock markets because we expect returns on our investment. Our returns are usually increase in stock value and profits from sales of stock. The religious markets guarantee us bounties in the after life. Every now and then snake oil salesmen roll into town and offer us newer religions into which to invest our souls. Yes, very much like the dot-coms that pronounced the old old economy subservient to the new new new economy (or some repetition of new thereof).

Then there are some of us that dont play in that market!

Posted at 03:21 PM

June 20, 2002

Super Villains unite

Get your super villain supplies at villain supply [via metafilter]

Posted at 01:58 PM

June 18, 2002

Why did Perseus kill Medusa

The king Acrisius had a daughter named Danae. The oracle of Apollo told Acrisius that Danae's son would kill him. perseus. note the winged feetHe locked her up in a tower and forbade her from every marrying anyone. One day Zeus showed up in the tower and made her pregnant. Perseus was born.

Acrisius locked Perseus and Danae in a box and cast her out to sea. The box ended up in the island of Seriphos where Polydectes was king. Polydectes wanted to marry Danae but was prevented by Perseus. Polydectes invited everyone to a fake wedding and chided Perseus for coming empty handed. Perseus responded by saying that he could bring any gift he wanted. Polydectes asked for the gorgon Medusa's head.

Perseus headed out to find Medusa. Medusa had the ability to turn anyone she saw into stone. So Perseus used a shield and cut Medusa's head. One the way back he flew by Atlas holding up the Earth. To save him from the burden he used Medusa to turn him into stone. He then saw Andromeda who was being sacrificed to a sea monster. He saved her and married her.

Finally, Perseus and Andromeda were killed by Dionysius and turned into constellations.

Learn more at the Greek Mythology site.

Posted at 01:26 PM

April 22, 2002

The worst inventions

We owe to the Middle Ages the two worst inventions of humanity - romantic love and gunpowder.

--Andre Maurois

Posted at 09:23 AM
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