Posts Tagged ‘healthcare

22
Jun
11

6.22.2011 … hot … woke up to an im picture of the sunrise at camp from Molls … what a great way to wake up!

Camp Illahee, kith/kin: Sunrise at Camp Illahee

music, kith/kin, Davidson College, memory lane:  I am sure this is dating me, but this is my group of girlfriend’s favorite song from freshman year.  YouTube – September by. Earth, Wind and Fire.

1978 was also the year that Maurice and managers Cavallo and Ruffalo worked out a deal for the launch of a new record label called The American Recording Company (ARC), to be distributed through CBS and the creation of a recording studio, George Massenburg/ARC also called “The Complex” in West Los Angeles. The year ended with another hit single, “September”, which was added to the quintuple platinum compilation album, The Best of Earth, Wind & Fire, Vol. 1, and was released November 23, 1978, just four days before Thanksgiving.

via Earth, Wind & Fire – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

movies, Louisville, Gill Holland, Jr., Davidson College, UNC, kudos:  I knew he had to be related to one of my all time favorite Davidson profs … Gil Holland.  Kudos, GHjr.

Gill Holland, who owns the Green Building on East Market Street and has helped to bring new businesses to that neighborhood in recent years, is the film’s producer. Holland and his production company, The Group Entertainment, had three movies at the Sundance festival this year. But this is the first movie he has made in Louisville.

“The pressure’s on,” Holland said. “It’s got to be good.”

Holland hopes to premiere “Tan Lines” at next year’s Flyover Film Festival and to have a theatrical release in autumn 2012.

via Louisville has a starring role in Gill Holland’s indie tennis movie | The Courier-Journal | courier-journal.com.

Great Recession, healthcare, desperation, followup:  This is getting international attention …

A middle-aged man with no criminal record walks into a Gastonia bank on June 9 and slips a teller a note demanding $1 – and medical treatment.

Then he sits down and waits for police.

James Richard Verone’s story has captured national attention and made front pages in papers as far away as England, Gaston County Sheriff Alan Cloninger said Tuesday.

Verone, 59, was charged with larceny from a person after he entered the RBC Centura Bank on South New Hope Road and handed the teller note demanding $1.

“It’s a bad situation when someone who’s been law-abiding all his life falls on hard times and feels like he has to commit a crime to get health care,” Cloninger said. “It’s tragic.”

via Gastonia’s $1 bandit gets major coverage | CharlotteObserver.com & The Charlotte Observer Newspaper.

cities, disease, healthcare, health scares:  I am reading a book about the modern city and our future.  One of the continuing issues with cities is the spread of disease.

Hong Kong has declared an outbreak of scarlet fever after it claimed the life of at least one child while infecting thousands of others in the city and elsewhere in China.

A seven-year-old Hong Kong girl died from the illness late last month while a five-year-old boy in the city died Tuesday morning from what health authorities said was a “very likely” a case of scarlet fever.

Hong Kong authorities have recorded 40 new cases in the past few days, pushing the total number to 459 so far this year, the highest annual total in the city and more than three times the figure for the whole of 2010.

The boy — who also had chicken pox — developed a fever last Wednesday and was admitted to hospital on Sunday with symptoms of the illness.

“We are facing an epidemic because the bacteria that is causing scarlet fever is widely circulating in this region — not only in Hong Kong but in mainland China and Macau.”

Hong Kong radio station RTHK reported that 49 people had contracted the illness in Macau, a former Portuguese colony about an hour by ferry from Hong Kong, with nine taken to hospital but no fatalities.

Tsang said Tuesday that more than 9,000 people had been infected so far this year in mainland China, doubling the average figure in recent years. He did not say if there were any fatal cases.

“Scarlet fever is in its peak season and may continue to be widespread for a prolonged period of time, possibly the whole summer,” Tsang said.

Local scientists said the outbreak may be linked to a deadly new strain of the disease which could make it more contagious than in the past.

A unique gene fragment was present in the bacteria’s genome “which might contribute to increased transmissibility of this strain,” said a health protection centre statement, released late Monday.

Scarlet fever mainly affects children between the ages of two and eight. Symptoms include fever, sore throat, rashes and a “strawberry coloured” tongue, and usually subside within 48 hours with appropriate antibiotic treatment.

The new strain, discovered by researchers at the University of Hong Kong, appears to be resistant to antibiotics traditionally used to fight the illness.

via Hong Kong declares scarlet fever outbreak – Channel NewsAsia.

health, sleep, insomnia, kith/kin:  I think i may get Edward a hammock. 🙂

Napping in a hammock is one of the more delightful tasks of summer, and Swiss researchers say they now know why.

The gentle rocking motion makes people fall asleep faster, and they sleep deeper. Those changes in brain activity may inspire new ways to help insomniacs, the researchers say.

Neuroscientists at the University of Geneva rigged up a bed so it would sway gently from side to side every four seconds, considerably slower than the pendulum on a cuckoo clock. “This rocking is very gentle, very smooth, oscillating every four seconds,” Sophie Schwartz, a professor of neurology who led the study, told Shots. “It’s not like rocking like you would see some mothers rocking their babies, it’s more gentle.”

A dozen adult research subjects napped on the bed for 45 minutes while scalp electrodes recorded brain activity. During one nap the bed swayed; for another, it was stationary.

The scientists weren’t too surprised to find that people fell asleep faster when the bed rocked. But they were surprised at the big difference that rocking made in brain activity.

Rocking increased the length of N2 sleep, a form of non-REM sleep that takes up about half of a good night’s rest. It also increased slow oscillations and “sleep spindles.” Sleep spindles are brief bursts of brain activity, which look like sudden up-and-down scribbles on an electroencephalogram.

That ability is important in recovery from stroke, and the researchers say that rocking while sleeping should be tested on people with strokes or other brain injuries. Rocking is “changing things in your brain,” Schwartz says.

The Swiss scientists are eager to try the rocking bed on night-time sleepers, to see if it might help with insomnia and other common sleep disorders. But Shots readers may not want to wait for those results, and instead head directly to the back yard and their own time-tested research tool, the hammock.

via Why Hammocks Make Sleep Easier, Deeper : Shots – Health Blog : NPR.

global issues, statistics, slavery, definitions:  Staggering … ““The second problem is more of a theoretical one where the definitions are not in place. We don’t have a common definition still as to what slavery is.”

Slavery still exists. Of that there isn’t much dispute, if any. But how widespread is what many experts call modern-day slavery?

Estimates range from about 10 million to 30 million, according to policymakers, activists, journalists and scholars.

The International Labour Organization, an agency of the United Nations that focuses on, among other things, labor rights, put the number at a “minimum estimate” of 12.3 million in a 2005 report.

Kevin Bales, a sociologist who serves as a consultant to the United Nations and has authored several books about modern-day slavery, estimated the number was 27 million people in his book “Disposable People: New Slavery in the Global Economy.” The book was published in 1999.

There is yet another estimate. Siddharth Kara, a fellow on trafficking at Harvard University and also an author, recently told CNN that his calculations put the range between 24 million and 32 million. That number was current as of the end of 2006, he said.

There are several reasons behind the variance in numbers, said Ben Skinner, who published a book about modern-day slavery – “A Crime So Monstrous: Face-to-Face with Modern-day Slavery.”

“There are two big problems with the count,” Skinner, a Senior Fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, said during a telephone interview. “The first is that the people we are counting are, by definition, a hidden population.

“The second problem is more of a theoretical one where the definitions are not in place. We don’t have a common definition still as to what slavery is.”

via The challenges of counting a ‘hidden population’ – The CNN Freedom Project: Ending Modern-Day Slavery – CNN.com Blogs.

draught, South Georgia, prayers:  This is where my grandparents farmed.  Amazing record low river levels.  Worthy of prayers..

The U.S. Geological Survey says the levels of south Georgia’s waterways have fallen to record lows.

Gauges on the Flint River showed the average depth of the river at 1.31 feet Friday, and discharge from the river was at 606 cubic feet per second. That number compares to a maximum output of 17,500 cubic feet in 1965 and a minimum average output of 715 cubic feet in 2000.

Brian McCallum, assistant director of the USGS Georgia Water Science Center, says data from Friday shows all of the waterways in South Georgia set record lows.

He says the drought in Georgia is becoming more severe.

McCallum says the diminished rainfall does not allow the natural restoration of underground water and forces farmers to use more water from waterways for irrigation.

via S. Georgia waterways hurt by drought  | ajc.com.

Steph Curry, basketball, people, followup, Davidson College, blessings/best wishes:  Like I have said before, what a great kid.

I spent part of Monday with Stephen Curry, the former Davidson star who has a big summer going on. Curry was part of the Curry Celebrity Classic at River Run Golf Club in Davidson today — the charity event that is raising $40,000 for the Ada Jenkins Center this year.

Curry, 23, isn’t playing golf today, as his right ankle is in encased in a cast due to offseason ankle surgery. He goes into a walking boot next Monday. He had nagging ankle problems most of the 2010-11 season but expects to be 100 percent for his third season (assuming there is a 2011-12 NBA season — labor strife looms).

On a more life-changing note, Curry will get married July 30th to Ayesha Alexander. She grew up in Charlotte as well — the two met in a church youth group when she was 14 and he was 15. They have dated for the past three years.

via Scott Says …: Curry getting married, rehabbing ankle.

YouTube, LOL: Enjoy … YouTube – Incredible eyebrow control by young golf fan.

education, legislation, NC, CMS:  The State has voted to add 5 days to the school calendar … talk about a last minute mess.

The state legislature slipped a summer surprise into the budget bill: Students are slated to spend five more days in school next year, a total of 185.

School districts, including Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, are scrambling to figure out the new mandate for a calendar that’s already been approved with 180 days.

John Tate, a state school board member from Charlotte, said even he was trying to figure out what the new requirement means. Tate says he’s a strong supporter of more class time for kids, once pushing to add five days per year, with additional pay for teachers, until the state hit a 200-day calendar.

But by yanking workdays that teachers use to build their skills, he said, “it’s a little bit of a shell game.” He said the state board will discuss how to deal with the waiver in July. Tate’s interpretation: To get a waiver, districts must show kids would benefit more from the teacher training than they would from five more days in school.

Mary McCray, president of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Association of Educators, said Monday she hopes CMS will make that argument. She said students benefit from teacher training such as CMS’ ongoing summer teachers institute: “We get an extensive amount of ideas and information that we can transfer into our classrooms.”

via Legislature adds five days to school year for N.C. students | CharlotteObserver.com & The Charlotte Observer Newspaper.

health, skin cancer, media, Brene Brown, blog posts of note:   From one of my favorite bloggers, this message is important …

My dear friend Ali Edwards told me about this video and it really spoke to me.

Like Ali, Steve and I were both swimmers. In fact, we met coaching swimming and life guarding. Even though that was 24 years ago, we still live in the pool during the summer. We both have family histories of skin cancer so we’re very careful about sun protection and we’re trying to teach our kids good habits.

I hope you’ll take a look at this powerful video and share it with someone you love – especially a teen or tween.

via hello sunshine – my blog – Ordinary Courage.

The video is powerful … spread it …

YouTube – Dear 16-year-old Me.

education, private education, costs, NYC:  Amazing that people can afford this …

The Riverdale Country School will charge $40,450 for high-school students in the coming year, the first time a New York private school has topped $40,000 in annual tuition.

Tuition at New York City schools has long outpaced the national average. This past year, national median tuition for 12th grade was $21,695, according to the National Association of Independent Schools. In New York City, it was $35,475.

via Private School Tuition Bill Tops $40,000 – WSJ.com.

21
Jun
11

6.21.2011 … summer solstice meant longest day trying to get my car to pass inspection … including going to dmv for a waiver when the computers were down … then having it pass on its own.

twitter, trending tweets:  I will never catch up …

We’ve got the best resource for you to discover the meaning behind every trend that hits Twitter’s front page, so you can chime in and shed some light on these trends for your fellow tweeters.

First thing’s first: bookmark What The Trend right now. This is the resource for discovering the meaning behind any and all trends on Twitter.

If you’re interested in helping What The Trend curate Twitter trend definitions, you can create an account and earn reputation points with each action you do, such as voting for definitions. After you’ve accumulated enough points, you’ll get additional abilities on the site, such as the ability to edit other people’s posts.

via How To Find Out The Meaning Of Every Trending Topic On Twitter – AllTwitter.

pets, dogs, random:  Who thinks of this stuff … but tomorrow I will watch for asymmetric tail-waggin.

Every dog lover knows how a pooch expresses its feelings.

Right Brain, Left Brain The muscles on either side of the tail apparently reflect emotions like fear and love registering in the brain.

Ears close to the head, tense posture, and tail straight out from the body means “don’t mess with me.” Ears perked up, wriggly body and vigorously wagging tail means “I am sooo happy to see you!”

But there is another, newly discovered, feature of dog body language that may surprise attentive pet owners and experts in canine behavior. When dogs feel fundamentally positive about something or someone, their tails wag more to the right side of their rumps. When they have negative feelings, their tail wagging is biased to the left.

A study describing the phenomenon, “Asymmetric tail-wagging responses by dogs to different emotive stimuli,” appeared in the March 20 issue of Current Biology. The authors are Giorgio Vallortigara, a neuroscientist at the University of Trieste in Italy, and two veterinarians, Angelo Quaranta and Marcello Siniscalchi, at the University of Bari, also in Italy.

via If You Want to Know if Spot Loves You So, It’s in His Tail – New York Times.

Paris, hotels, travel, Mama Shelter:  OK, I am really considering this …

Mama Shelter, Paris

Mama Shelter, Paris

Two French hospitality heavyweights, former Club Med chief executive Serge Trigano and legendary designer Philippe Starck, paired up to turn a dilapidated parking garage in the far-from-charming 20th Arrondissement into an impossibly hip 172-room hotel. Starck’s whimsical design touches are on full display in the lobby, from the gold-and-silver tree-stump stools and curtains dotted with four-leaf clovers and floating eyes to the chalkboard ceiling covered with phrases and diagrams.

via Coolest Hotel Lobbies- Page 11 – Articles | Travel + Leisure.

crime, FBI, media, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter: … sign of the times …

But in a sign that the online revolution is infiltrating that most traditional of agencies, the bureau unveiled Monday a publicity campaign featuring public service announcements in 14 cities and billboards in New York’s Times Square, along with a heavy dose of Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

 

The purpose: to help agents catch James “Whitey” Bulger, the notorious Boston mobster and government informant who vanished 16 years ago.The 81-year-old is charged in 19 killings and has been on the FBI’s “Ten Most Wanted Fugitives” list since 1999. Bul ger, an inspiration for the movie “The Departed,’’ has been called “Boston’s boogeyman” and has supposedly been “seen” in nearly every state and on at least five continents

via FBI uses social media in search for long-time fugitive – The Washington Post.

food – homemade, pizza:  I love homemade pizza … I may try some of his suggestions.

There is nothing like pizza fresh out of a brick oven. That thin-yet-chewy crust blistered to perfection was one of those things I thought was utterly impossible to reproduce at home — until I met Andrew Feinberg.

via Pizzeria-Quality Pies at Home – Video – NYTimes.com.

women’s rights, abortion, global issues, provincial viewpoints:  This is a very tough issue … but to me one of the most compelling points in this book review is this one:  “Even though 163 million girls have been denied life solely because of their gender, she can’t help seeing the problem through the lens of an American political issue.”  I hope n educating my children, I am able to give them a larger world view.

But oddly enough, Ms. Hvistendahl notes, it is usually a country’s rich, not its poor, who lead the way in choosing against girls. “Sex selection typically starts with the urban, well-educated stratum of society,” she writes. “Elites are the first to gain access to a new technology, whether MRI scanners, smart phones—or ultrasound machines.” The behavior of elites then filters down until it becomes part of the broader culture. Even more unexpectedly, the decision to abort baby girls is usually made by women—either by the mother or, sometimes, the mother-in-law.

If you peer hard enough at the data, you can actually see parents demanding boys. Take South Korea. In 1989, the sex ratio for first births there was 104 boys for every 100 girls—perfectly normal. But couples who had a girl became increasingly desperate to acquire a boy. For second births, the male number climbed to 113; for third, to 185. Among fourth-born children, it was a mind-boggling 209. Even more alarming is that people maintain their cultural assumptions even in the diaspora; research shows a similar birth-preference pattern among couples of Chinese, Indian and Korean descent right here in America.

Ms. Hvistendahl argues that such imbalances are portents of Very Bad Things to come. “Historically, societies in which men substantially outnumber women are not nice places to live,” she writes. “Often they are unstable. Sometimes they are violent.” As examples she notes that high sex ratios were at play as far back as the fourth century B.C. in Athens—a particularly bloody time in Greek history—and during China’s Taiping Rebellion in the mid-19th century. (Both eras featured widespread female infanticide.) She also notes that the dearth of women along the frontier in the American West probably had a lot to do with its being wild. In 1870, for instance, the sex ratio west of the Mississippi was 125 to 100. In California it was 166 to 100. In Nevada it was 320. In western Kansas, it was 768.

It is telling that Ms. Hvistendahl identifies a ban on abortion—and not the killing of tens of millions of unborn girls—as the “worst nightmare” of feminism. Even though 163 million girls have been denied life solely because of their gender, she can’t help seeing the problem through the lens of an American political issue. Yet, while she is not willing to say that something has gone terribly wrong with the pro-abortion movement, she does recognize that two ideas are coming into conflict: “After decades of fighting for a woman’s right to choose the outcome of her own pregnancy, it is difficult to turn around and point out that women are abusing that right.”

This is where choice leads. This is where choice has already led. Ms. Hvistendahl may wish the matter otherwise, but there are only two alternatives: Restrict abortion or accept the slaughter of millions of baby girls and the calamities that are likely to come with it.

via Book Review: Unnatural Selection – WSJ.com.

apps, superlatives, lists:  Enjoy … this list includes some of my favorites.

Life isn’t a beauty pageant, but that doesn’t mean your app collection shouldn’t be spiffy looking. When an iPad app blows us away with its graphics or interface it quickly becomes one of our most used apps. After toiling in the App Store for days, we’re proud to offer our roundup of 50 of the most beautiful apps available for the iPad.

via The 50 Most Beautiful iPad Apps | Mac|Life.

tweet of the day, Great Recession, healthcare, desperation:  More on this tomorrow …

CBS News (@CBSNews)
6/21/11 3:33 PM
N.C. man admits to robbing $1 from bank to get free prison healthcare http://bit.ly/j1sZSS (via@crimesider)

 

 

12
May
11

5.12.2011 … Happy birthday not so prime husband 51 is NOT a prime number! … but you are definitely prime in every other way …

culture, psychology, fear of failure:  Interesting …

While failure may be an integral prerequisite for true innovation, the fact remains that most of us harbor a deathly fear of it — the same psychological mechanisms that drive our severe aversion to being wrong, only amplified. That fear is the theme of this year’s student work exhibition at Stockholm’s Berghs School of Communication and, to launch it, they asked some of today’s most beloved creators — artists, designers, writers — to share their experiences and thoughts on the subject. While intended as advice for design students, these simple yet important insights are relevant to just about anyone with a beating heart and a head full of ideas — a much-needed reminder of what we all rationally know but have such a hard time internalizing emotionally.

via Famous Creators on the Fear of Failure | Brain Pickings.

consumers, material things, Great Recession:  It’s good I always liked Target and Costco!

Bentleys and Hermès bags are selling again. Yet the wealthiest Americans are emerging from the financial downturn as different consumers than they were.

Lyndie Benson says she now mentally calculates the “price per wear” of designer clothing. As the wife of saxophonist Kenny G, Ms. Benson, a photographer, can afford what she wants. She used to make a lot of impulse purchases, she says. But when shopping in Malibu, Calif., recently, she stopped herself before buying a gray Morgane Le Fay suit she’d tried on. “I walked outside and thought, ‘Hmmm, I don’t really love it that much,’ ” she says with contentment.

A number of surveys released in the past six weeks suggest Ms. Benson’s new selectiveness is widespread among the wealthiest Americans. Though many of these people might seem unscathed by the financial crisis—they didn’t lose their homes, jobs or retirement savings—they were deeply affected by what took place around them. “If you’re conscious at all, it just seeps in,” Ms. Benson says.

via Post-Recession, the Rich Are Different – WSJ.com.

photography, organization: Overwhelming is right!

It’s easy to post your photos on Facebook. What’s not so easy is managing them—organizing all your digital files so that you can find individual pictures without scrolling through hundreds.

Bradly Treadaway, digital media coordinator and faculty member at the International Center of Photography in New York, knows how overwhelming the task can be. He recently digitized about 5,000 printed photos and slides from his family, some of which date back 180 years. Developing a system for managing your photos is “like learning a new language,” he says.

The key to staying organized is doing a lot of work up front to sort and label the photos when you first transfer them from camera to computer. Mr. Treadaway keeps his main collection on a hard drive, rather than in a Web-based archive, because he feels that photo-management programs for computers offer more choices for how to edit, share and retain the photos.

Mr. Treadaway uses Adobe Photoshop Lightroom; for nonprofessionals, he suggests programs like iPhoto or the desktop version of Google’s Picasa.

via Make Organizing Your Photos a Snap – WSJ.com.

food, favorites, recipes:  Pasta Primavera is one of those dishes that I still remember how good it tasted the first time I had it ….

Pasta primavera, which means “springtime pasta,” is an American invention — at least as American as, say, fettuccine Alfredo. It first appeared on the menu at Le Cirque in the 1970s, and Sirio Maccioni, that restaurant’s owner, not only takes credit for it but was also quoted in 1991 in The Times saying, “It seemed like a good idea and people still like it.”

But with all due respect to Mr. Maccioni, is pasta primavera still a good idea? Which is to say, pasta tossed with every vegetable under the sun, spring or not — broccoli, tomatoes, peas, zucchini, asparagus, mushrooms, green beans, you name it — and enough cream to smother any hint of freshness? I’m all in favor of pasta with vegetables, but I want to be able to taste them. And I want them to be prepared thoughtfully.

via Mark Bittman – The Pasta Primavera Remix – NYTimes.com.

food, Paris, blog posts:  Fun post from Gourmet Live – App Exclusive: French Women Heart Frites. And Nine More Parisian Lies — Gourmet Live.

high school, testing, SAT, Apps:  I may utilize this list …

Apps that help teenagers study for the SAT (or, for those not living on either coast, the ACT) are improving, as traditional test-prep businesses like Princeton Review and Kaplan refine their mobile software to compete with start-ups.

Several to consider on this front include Princeton Review’s SAT Score Quest for iPad (free) and SAT Vocab Challenge for iPhone ($5), Kaplan SAT Flashcubes (free) and SAT Connect ($10 for Apple). For math, Adapster ($10 on Apple) is designed nicely.

via New and Better Apps Help Students Study for SAT – NYTimes.com.

Osama bin Laden’s death, twitter:  Tweeting for a missing snake is one thing … this one disturbs me.  Let him rest in peace, wherever he is.

In the days after Osama bin Laden was killed, a number of anonymous parodists created fake bin Laden Twitter accounts, tweeting what they called excerpts from the terrorists’ journal, his thoughts as a ghost, and observations from his new residence in hell.

via Osama bin Laden tweets from the dead – BlogPost – The Washington Post.

tv, soap operas, end of an era:  I loved watching soaps when I visited my grandparents in the summer … and in law school.  I wonder if my children even know what a soap opera is?

In today’s Academic Minute, Quinnipiac University’s Paul Janensch discusses the radio roots of a rapidly disappearing entertainment genre, the soap opera. Janensch is emeritus professor of journalism at Quinnipiac.

via Demise of Soap Operas / Academic & Pulse / Audio – Inside Higher Ed.

iPhone Lite: Rumors, rumors, rumors …

These are all tweaks that would significantly reduce the production price without necessarily degrading the user experience (particularly relevant is the smaller memory, which means the phones would benefit from Apple’s overhaul of MobileMe, widely expected to be cloud-centric). A drop in price like this would let Apple sell an iPhone Lite at a knock-down price, much as it has done previously with earlier edition iPhones, without necessarily fragmenting its platform, and enabling it to scoop up more of the low-end market that it’s partially ceded to Android.

via More Evidence That An iPhone Lite Is En Route | Fast Company.

iPhone Apps, neighborhood watch, Brookwood Hills:  Beware kids … when we started a neighborhood watch in Brookwood Hills in the 70s, our block volunteer was the wonderful “old maid” across the street. Well, a college girl was home for the summer … she loved about ten houses down … her parents were out of town … and her boyfriend would come stay every night and leave his car in front of Ms. Mackie’s house … guess what she did … she called the police!

It’s not the only instance of becoming the virtual. Home Elephant bills itself as “the world’s first app for neighbors to connect.” It serves as a sort of virtual neighborhood watch.

via Mister Rogers’ App | Fast Company.

libraries, architecture, University of Chicago:  UofC’s new library does from the outside what a library is intended to do … opens up the world to the user.

The library’s reading room, which sits directly beneath the building’s curving dome of steel and glass, will be open to university students, faculty and staff. But books and other printed materials won’t be moved to the library’s underground storage area until next fall. The dedication of the library won’t happen until October.

via Cityscapes: Reading room of Jahn’s U. of C. Mansueto Library to open next week.

To Kill a Mockingbird, movies, bookshelf,  Hey, Boo: Harper Lee & To Kill a Mockingbird, 
documentary:

Fifty years after it won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, filmmaker Mary Murphy’s documentary explores the continued influence of “To Kill a Mockingbird” through interviews with Oprah Winfrey, Tom Brokaw, Wally Lamb, as well as author Harper Lee’s family and friends.

via The Real Story Behind ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ – Speakeasy – WSJ.

guerilla improv/spontaneous musicals, new term:  “Guerilla improv”  … don’t you just love the term.

Guerrilla improv troupe Improv Everywhere struck again last month at GEL Conference, the annual gathering of tech/social media/business voices in New York City.

With the help of GEL founder Mark Hurst, the covert entertainers pulled off one of their signature “Spontaneous Musicals” at the top of Twirlr founder John Reynolds’ presentation. Just as he tells the audience to politely turn off their mobile devices, a man suddenly rises and begins singing about the audacity of the request.

via ‘Gotta Share’ The Musical: Improv Everywhere Strikes Again At GEL Conference (VIDEO).

Coca-Cola, culture, quotes:  “Coke ‘started the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest. … A Coke is a Coke and no amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking. All the Cokes are the same and all the Cokes are good.'”

The 125th anniversary of the first Coca-Cola sold — on May 8, 1886, for 5 cents — has inspired the release of “Coca-Cola,” a collection of images of the beverage, in realms real and imagined, from Assouline. Arguably the world’s most ubiquitous brand, the jolly red logo has been pasted on just about every susceptible surface on the planet, and this book serves to remind us youngsters of the breadth and endurance of its appeal, just in case it wasn’t already stitched into the fabric of our pop culture psyches. Indeed, at times, “Coca-Cola” seems less a birthday tribute to the stamina of a yummy, fizzy black taste with mysterious origins and more a tribute to several generations of successful advertising. And let’s not forget its importance as a symbol of what’s great about our republic. As Andy Warhol, no stranger to ubiquity or commercialism, contests on Page 8, Coke “started the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest. … A Coke is a Coke and no amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking. All the Cokes are the same and all the Cokes are good.”

via Pop Culture – NYTimes.com.

Three Cups of Tea, bookshelf:  Lots of discussion … I am reading it now … it is a good book … sad that it is fabricated.

With the first cup of tea, you are a stranger. With the second cup of tea, you are an honored guest. With the third cup of tea, you become family. This Balti proverb lends Greg Mortenson’s book, Three Cups of Tea, its name. But with a class action lawsuit filed against him in early May following investigations by writer John Krakauer and 60 Minutes, what is needed now is three cups of compassion.

The story of Greg Mortenson’s journey in his first book, Three Cups of Tea, tells the story of a young man listening and learning from those in a distant valley in Pakistan and the good that came from it. Krakauer in his Three Cups of Deceit tells how this story of a heart in the right place has been prettied up for publication and followed with financial mismanagement, as well as building schools in places unprepared to begin educating students in the buildings. As we act on Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 25 that we are to feed the hungry and give drink to the thirsty, we must not lose sight of those in developing nations as fellow members of the Body of Christ with gifts to offer and wisdom born of a deeper understanding of the local geography, weather, and culture. We must learn from each other and work together, not merely applying a solution from elsewhere, even another valley in the same mountains, to a new setting unthinkingly.

via Episcopal News Service – COMMENTARY.

The one thing in this story that makes me eternally grateful

is that we still have a 60 Minutes and New York Times doing investigative reporting and practicing real journalism. In an era where opinion-spewing and celebrity-swooning routinely pass for news, it’s good to know a few people are out there doing the hard work of covering–and uncovering–things we need to know.

via Three cups of humility. | What Gives 365.

consumerism, material things:  OK, I like this iPad case … in case you want to get me a present. 🙂

Image of iPad case in red and white gingham wool

Thrillist.com.

alcoholism, recovery, AA:  Very interesting …

But I believe that when people are in positions of power related to addictions — treatment providers, policy makers, etc. — it’s imperative that they be transparent about their associations and connections. It’s fine to be anonymous about your own path to recovery when you are the only one being affected, but it’s not appropriate when you seek to influence public health or policy.

via Taking the ‘Anonymous’ Out of AA: Should Recovering Addicts Come Out of the Closet? – – TIME Healthland.

ObL Family: 

But at the end, his rosy portrayal of being married to jihad was sorely tested. His family must have driven him nuts. During his last days in Abbottabad, Pakistan, bin Laden had to contend with three wives and 17 noisy children under one roof. He had no escape from the din, save for furtive pacing around the garden late at night or vanishing into his so-called Command and Control Center, a dank, windowless room. Swathed against the Himalayan chill in a woolen shawl, he recorded rants that displayed an ever widening disconnect with the daily grind of terrorism: his last oddball offerings were on climate change and capitalism.

via Big Love: Bin Laden Tried to Keep Wives Separate but Equal – TIME.

2012 Presidential Election, Mitt Romney, healthcare, states’ rights:

Mitt Romney says last year’s Democratic-passed health care law is a federal government takeover of health delivery. But he says his somewhat similar Massachusetts law was right for his state.

The likely Republican presidential candidate on Thursday defended the law enacted in 2006 when he was Massachusetts governor. Both the state and federal laws require people to obtain health insurance.

Romney said his program was a state solution to a state problem. He said the Obama-backed law is a power-grab by the federal government to impose a one-size-fits-all plan on all 50 states.

via Mitt Romney Tackling Health Care Vulnerability.

31
Jan
11

1.31.2011 … 51 isn’t so bad …

food, trends:  Flights of pie, oh my!

Pie is turning up all over the US, having reinvented itself from a dowdy church supper ware to a stylish dessert served in ‘flights’ in some places. Each region has a specialty based on local ingredients and culture. If you filled your plate motoring across the country – made an American pie flight, so to speak – it’d look like this…

Nutty South & Tart West

Down south, everyone’s gramma has her own recipe for pecan pie, where secret ingredients swirl in the bowl with the nuts and corn syrup. Royer’s Round Top Cafe (105 Main St, Round Top), in middle of nowhere Texas, has earned a swooning crowd for its version. It’s so traditional you’re charged 50 cents extra for not getting the ice cream on top. The chef also whips up southern-style buttermilk and coconut chess pies. Can’t decide? They offer a pie flight!

via American pie: slicing across the country – travel tips and articles – Lonely Planet.

FaceBook, social networking, culture:  More social, hummm?

Were you creeped out by the ominous trailer for “The Social Network” (“I want you to notice, when I’m not around …”) and what it may say about you? Does logging on to Facebook for the fourth time today make you feel like a soulless shut-in?

If so, fear not: According to a cheery report out of the University of Texas, Austin, Facebook actually makes us more sociable. Surveying 900 current and recent college graduates nationwide, Craig Watkins and Erin Lee of the Department of Radio-Television-Film at the University of Texas examined the impact of Facebook on users’ social lives, concluding that “social media afford opportunities for new expressions of friendship, intimacy and community.”

via Studied – Does Facebook Make You More Social Offline? – NYTimes.com.

art, pop art, Roy Lichtenstein:  Loved this … “So shocking that in 1964 Life Magazine wondered if the artist who created them, Roy Lichtenstein, was quite possibly the worst artist in the U.S.”

Whimsical paintings based on cartoons … witty sculptures … prints that remind us of famous paintings, with a commercial twist.

Images so familiar to us today it’s nearly impossible to believe that they were once considered quite shocking.

So shocking that in 1964 Life Magazine wondered if the artist who created them, Roy Lichtenstein, was quite possibly the worst artist in the U.S.

That’s not a question anymore.

When the dust settled at Christies’ auction house last November, one of Lichtenstein’s pieces named “Ohhh…Alright…”did more than “all right”: It sold for nearly $43 million.

A record, beating out even Warhol’s Campbell’s soup can.

Lichtenstein himself would find that shocking.

“He used to say that he was amazed that people would actually pay for what he called ‘used canvases,'” said Mitchell Lichtenstein, Roy’s youngest son.

But, in fact, Roy Lichtenstein may be more popular today than ever, says his youngest son, Mitchell, who walked us through the sculpture garden on the roof of his father’s old N.Y. studio, pointing to one piece Mitchell’s mother had called “her giant Chia Pet.”

“I think people appreciate his humor,” Mitchell said, “and I think they see more in it as time goes by.”

via Roy Lichtenstein: Pop Art’s Most Popular – CBS Sunday Morning – CBS News.

travel, historical journeys, bucket lists:  So where would you go … I would like to follow Lewis & Clark or Paul.

Part one: Go around the world in 80 days with Jules Verne, rampage across Mongolia with Genghis Khan and trek the Muslim world with Ibn Battutah.

Part two: Take the ‘Voyage of the Beagle’ with Charles Darwin, decide whether Alexander the Great should be Alexander the Grotesque and see if you think Marco Polo was a fibber.

Part three: Get satirical with Evelyn Waugh, explore the Wild West with Lewis & Clark, and trek across the Australia with Burke and Wills.

via Greatest historical journeys – travel tips and articles – Lonely Planet.

health, globalization: Go for it! I did not know that only one disease has been eradicated.

ONLY one disease has ever been eradicated—smallpox—but Davos Man thinks a second is possible. In a packed congress hall today full of world leaders and celebrities, David Cameron and Bill Gates announced a bold campaigh to wipe out polio over the next few years.

via Davos diary: A plan to eradicate polio | The Economist.

Baby Boomers, health, healthcare:  I think we are going to be a pain in the ass!

The MIT Enterprise Forum Northwest held Boomers, Technology & Health: Consumers Taking Charge in Seattle, Washington on January 19, 2011. The event examined the role of baby boomers in future technology innovation with a special focus on health.  The organizers did more than an excellent job framing the event with speakers representing health providers, industry, technology developers and venture capital they prepared a research report based upon interviews with 50 industry and thought leaders to understand the barriers as well as opportunities for boomer-driven innovation. The report is one of the best summaries of the evolving role of baby boomers in driving innovation in health and wellness and well worth the read.

The report presents five key findings:

1. Baby Boomers Will Play a Key Role in the Adoption of Personal Connected Health

Why will baby boomers make a difference? Simply put, the baby boomers have more money, greater expectations and personal health as well as caregiving needs that will drive demand for health and wellness innovations.

2. Personal Connected Health is a Component and Enabler of a Paradigm Shift to Patient-centric Approach

The baby boomers are the leading edge and passionately vocal movement of consumers demanding patient-centric care. With 67% of the boomers having one or more chronic diseases they will seek technologies and services to manage and monitor their health – on their terms as consumers with demands, not simply as patients in need.

3. The Imminent Explosion of Personal Health Data Will Create Opportunities for Entrepreneurial Problem-solvers

Consumer demand is only one part of innovation. Technology serves as inspiration and catalyst. The report observes that the ready availability of new wireless, mobile and ubiquitous smart everything present an endless possibility of health devices and services.

4. Lasting Behavioral Change Requires Incentives and Social Support Mechanisms

As noted in other posts on disruptivedemographics.com, social media is not just for kids any more. The report authors aptly observe that Web 2.0 will be key in developing the social support necessary for healthy and lasting behaviors.

5. The Northwest has the Ingredients for the Creation of Personal Connected Health Business Ecosystem

via Disruptive Demographics: Global Aging, Technology & Innovation: Translating Global Trends into Regional Economic Opportunity: The Pacific Northwest Looks at Older Baby Boomers, Health & Technological Innovation.

Egypt Uprising, titles/headlines, Davidson, prayers:  Updates for today … have to laugh at the Huffington Post title … “A Complete Guide to the 2011 Uprising.”  Davidson has two students in Egypt this semester.  One with a Middlebury Program and he is coming home.  One in Cairo who has family in Cairo and he is staying  Prayers for all in Egypt.

As his people desert him, so do Mr Mubarak’s foreign backers. Shortly after he spoke, so did Barack Obama. He called on the Egyptian president to “give meaning” to his promises to improve the lot of the Egyptian people. For much of the crisis, the American administration has been trying hard to avoid making a choice: Mubarak is our ally but we deplore violence and are on the side of “reform”, goes the line.

Hillary Clinton has called for restraint on all sides and for the restoration of communications. She said America supported the universal rights of the Egyptians, and called for urgent political, economic and social reforms. But sitting on the fence becomes increasingly uncomfortable as events unfold, and the vibes from Washington have become distinctly colder over the past 24 hours. The private talk, increasingly, is no longer about whether Mr Mubarak should go, but who might be able to take his place if he does.

via Unrest in Egypt: Not appeased | The Economist.

-and-

Having trouble digesting all the news in Egypt? Not sure what’s going on and why it matters? Want to brush up on the key players and latest developments? Or just curious to learn more about Egypt in general?

You’ve come to the right place. The Huffington Post is aggregating our comprehensive coverage into easily-digestible nuggets below to help those who feel overwhelmed. This page is 100% human-curated. It will be fluid and changing as major developments happen, so please keep checking back. And please share it with your friends, family and colleagues.

via EGYPT: A Complete Guide To The 2011 Revolution.

-and-

What’s happening today?

A.

Today’s biggest event was a battle at the Interior Ministry. The police have sort of made it their last stand. The building is surrounded by several hundred to a thousand police. Some of the protesters were a few blocks away, surrounding some army tanks, having afternoon prayers. The soldiers had been just sitting atop their tanks, being friendly with the crowd.

The prayers were punctuated by the sounds of gunfire. When they heard the gunfire, the protesters were all begging the Army to get involved. The soldiers drove four army vehicles to the Interior Ministry to protect the protesters who were fighting the police. The protesters hid behind the army vehicles as the police fired. It was amazing.

Q.

How is it for you as a resident of Cairo?

A.

I have lived here for 10 years. When I’m covering Baghdad, I expect to hear gunfire at night. I never expected to hear it in Cairo. There was never much news in Cairo and I liked it that way. My favorite thing about Cairo, coming back from Iraq or Afghanistan, was how warm and funny the Egyptian people are.

My neighbors are deeply concerned about what’s going to happen. There are roadblocks on almost every corner, with neighborhood militias — really just six to 10 men with sticks — protecting their homes from looters. People are very nervous about security.

I love Cairo. It’s hard to see the downtown area trashed, but for the first time in 30 years, people are excited. Professionally, there’s the thrill of covering such a big story and watching a revolution. But everyone is worried about what’s going to happen next.

via Cairo Photographer Sees Hope in Turmoil: Scott Nelson Tells What It’s Like – NYTimes.com.

Apps, games:  relaxing?

iPad owners in search of a relaxing, story-based puzzler should enjoy the game play packed into Treasure Seekers 2: The Enchanted Canvases HD, the sequel to a game that ranked among the Top 10 highest-grossing games in 43 countries.

Based on a nearly 2-year-old PC game of the same name, Treasure Seekers 2 challenges you to find well-hidden objects in busy environments (think Where’s Waldo?), and use items in your inventory (or in the environment) to solve the task at hand.

via Treasure Seekers 2: Graphics impressive; adventure on the short side – USATODAY.com.

challengeShow Us Your City: A User-Generated Video Project with a Local Point of View – NYTimes.com.

art, sculpture, exhibits, London:  Another reason to go to LOndon. 🙂

England has produced some of the greatest sculptors of the last 100 years, so it is only fitting that one of London’s most prominent galleries, the Royal Academy of Arts (Burlington House, Piccadilly; 44-207-300-8000; http://www.royalacademy.org.uk), should hold one of the first comprehensive exhibition of their work. Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth, Jacob Epstein and Anthony Caro are just a few of the major artists whose sculptures will be on display through April 7.

via In London, a Century of British Sculpture – NYTimes.com.

fashion:  I will continue to let medium ash brown work for me.

From salt-and-pepper locks to a white mane, gray hair isn’t just for men in their 50s and 60s anymore. Film stars, athletes, television personalities, even President Obama, are all rocking gray hair–and some are welcoming it.

“I think it’s the measure of maturing and growing,” said Andy Cohen the host of Bravo’s “Watch What Happens Live.” The 42-year-old first noticed his transition from dark black to slate in his late 20s, when a few silver hairs started appearing around his temples. He never had the urge to dye it, and suggests that graying men regardless of their age should wear it with confidence.

via How to Make Gray Hair Work For You – Speakeasy – WSJ.

random: Click and watch this gorilla walk … kinda creepy.

Meet Ambam, a 485-pound Western lowland gorilla who strolls around the Port Lympne Wild Animal Park in England like he owns the place. According to Phil Ridges, the park’s gorilla keeper, Ambam might walk upright to get a height advantage to look over the wall to watch for feeding time. Either that, or he’s just a shrewd self-promoter: Videos of Ambam walking have captured YouTube’s attention, with more than 1 million views.

via Viral Weekend: Watch a Gorilla Walk Like a Human – TIME NewsFeed.

15
Aug
10

8.15.2010 … et and eb moving stuff into a UHaul and then the adventure starts again … … uHaul is going through Missouri now …Let’s try Godspeed again!

followup, 15 minutes of fame:  Loved this followup story!

That kiss on V-J Day was captured in at least two photographs – one iconic, one merely famous. And for decades since, there have been debates. Who was the sailor? Who was the nurse? Many people have staked claims, and countless stories have tried to sort them out.

This is not one of those stories.

This is the story of another nurse. Her face appears, small but beaming nonetheless, way off to the side in the less famous photo, nearly out of the frame, watching the kissers, transfixed. The woman, Gloria Bullard – vivacious and lucid at 84 and living in Winnsboro, S.C., about 65 miles south of Charlotte – still treasures her tiny spot in history: not so much 15 minutes of fame as a few millimeters of it.

via Witness to a timeless kiss – CharlotteObserver.com.

travel, Reno/Lake Tahoe:  Making plans for “The Biggest Little City in the World.”

Reno calls itself “The Biggest Little City in the World.” That’s meant to say it’s a small town with big-city amenities. But the reality is that its casinos, shops, restaurants and nightlife play second fiddle to the main attraction surrounding the city: the great outdoors.

“Outdoor recreation is huge here because we have so much sunshine. People love being outside,” says real estate agent Carrie Sieben of LL Realty. “Reno is the gateway to all of the many activities of northern Nevada and bordering California, yet it is very inexpensive.”

One of Reno’s biggest appeals is nearby Lake Tahoe. But luxury houses in Reno sell for the same as or less than small condos near the water’s edge. Single-family houses in golf communities start under $200,000. “Around Reno, you can buy a nice condo in the mid-$100,000s,” Sieben says.

via Second homes: Bet on having a good time in Reno – USATODAY.com.

travel, technology:  It is kind of nice to still have personal touch! Always looking for the best fares … interesting how the internet undermined his business model.

Between 1995 and 2001, Parson’s salesmanship and BestFares.com’s reputation as the Internet site for the cheapest travel deals produced heady success. The company added a travel agency to book the deals Parsons originally had steered to other agencies, and swelled to more than 100 employees. The magazine got slicker and more sophisticated.

“You have so many people doing this now —Expedia and SmartTravel.com and Travelocity and so many others,” says Susan Raphael, co-host and producer of the Let’s Travel! show heard on some public radio stations and at LetsTravelRadio.com, where Parsons is a frequent guest. “But with Tom, you’ve got such an interesting character. With Tom, you get someone who really cares about the consumer’s experience of travel. He’s more than a travel agent. He’s a character, a raconteur, somebody you’d really like to know better.”

via BestFares.com CEO Parsons preaches virtues of low fares – USATODAY.com.

culture:

But the public shouldn’t have been so shocked. From prostitution scandals to corruption allegations to the steady drumbeat of charges against corporate executives and world-class athletes, it seems that the headlines are filled with the latest misstep of someone in a position of power. This isn’t just anecdotal: Surveys of organizations find that the vast majority of rude and inappropriate behaviors, such as the shouting of profanities, come from the offices of those with the most authority.

Psychologists refer to this as the paradox of power. The very traits that helped leaders accumulate control in the first place all but disappear once they rise to power. Instead of being polite, honest and outgoing, they become impulsive, reckless and rude. In some cases, these new habits can help a leader be more decisive and single-minded, or more likely to make choices that will be profitable regardless of their popularity. One recent study found that overconfident CEOs were more likely to pursue innovation and take their companies in new technological directions. Unchecked, however, these instincts can lead to a big fall.

That may not be the best advice. Another study conducted by Mr. Keltner and Cameron Anderson, a professor at the Haas School of Business, measured “Machiavellian” tendencies, such as the willingness to spread malicious gossip, in a group of sorority sisters. It turned out that the Machiavellian sorority members were quickly identified by the group and isolated. Nobody liked them, and so they never became powerful.

Why does power lead people to flirt with interns and solicit bribes and fudge financial documents? According to psychologists, one of the main problems with authority is that it makes us less sympathetic to the concerns and emotions of others. For instance, several studies have found that people in positions of authority are more likely to rely on stereotypes and generalizations when judging other people. They also spend much less time making eye contact, at least when a person without power is talking.

This suggests that even fleeting feelings of power can dramatically change the way people respond to information. Instead of analyzing the strength of the argument, those with authority focus on whether or not the argument confirms what they already believe. If it doesn’t, then the facts are conveniently ignored.

There is one very simple tweak that erases this benevolence. When the “dictators” are socially isolated—this can occur, for instance, if the subjects are located in separate rooms, or if they’re assured anonymity—more than 60% of people keep all of the money. Instead of sharing the cash with someone else, they pocket the $10. Perhaps the corner office could use a few more windows.

via Weekend Essay by Jonah Lehrer: How Power Affects Us – WSJ.com.

Great Recession:  Have you seen any stimulus money at work … saved jobs or new structures?

A year and a half after Congress passed the economic-stimulus plan, the state aid and tax cuts in the package have nearly ended, but some of the big infrastructure projects touted by the Obama administration are still months from visible development.

Critics of the stimulus have seized on the slow progress as evidence that the plan has been a costly failure. And amid a continued high jobless rate, that argument appears to be resonating with voters.

A train makes its way along a newly laid track in Brunswick, Maine on Aug. 2, 2010, during a ceremony. The rail line that will connect Brunswick to Portland, Maine, is scheduled to be completed by 2012, said Gov. John Baldacci.

The administration said stimulus spending was always intended to roll out in stages, over a period of two years, and that the pace of outlays for infrastructure would be slower than for other parts of the package. But recent opinion polls suggested the White House has struggled to communicate that message, particularly after its emphasis on “shovel-ready” projects during the debate over the plan’s passage in early 2009.

via Slow Progress on Some Big Stimulus Projects – WSJ.com.

travel, random:  If you have ever traveled in a country with a different style of facilities, it’s always nice to find a new one!

Ahead of the Commonwealth Games in October, New Delhi has begun building a series of public toilets that look from the outside as if they were inspired by the city’s medieval monuments, with their red stone cladding and arched doorways.

The Municipal Corporation of Delhi toilets are supposed to be maintained through their own revenue, since the loos are located in busy existing markets and have rental space built overhead that the officials believe should appeal to cafes and similar businesses.

They may not do away with the menace of public urinating—that would require toilets interspersed at regular intervals along all city streets. But they’re definitely an improvement from no toilet at all (and from the ones that did exist).

Municipal official Amiya Chandra says they plan to build 216 coffee houses-cum-toilets.

via Video: Delhi’s New ‘Ye Olde’ Public Toilets – India Real Time – WSJ.

places, Chicago:  I never went to a rooftop club, but John did and it was a great way to see a Cubs game.

The Lakeview Baseball Club apartment building across from Wrigley Field is best known for the tote board under its rooftop seats that details the years elapsed since the Cubs’ last division, league and World Series titles.

But after Lakeview slipped into foreclosure this year, it is the numbers outlined in court filings that are particularly telling. They offer a rare glimpse into the shaky finances of a rooftop club operating in a bad economy.

In May, for example, Lakeview had an operating profit of $34,365. If the club was still making its $31,865 in monthly mortgage payments to the bank, that would have left just $2,500 after all expenses and fixed costs.

via Rough times for Wrigley rooftops – chicagotribune.com

Great Recession:

Read any introductory economics textbook, and you’ll learn that the Federal Reserve has three primary benchmarks that it employs to control monetary policy: the federal funds rate, the discount rate and the reserve ratio. Today the Federal Reserve made history by adding a new benchmark: the size of its balance sheet.

Now the Fed’s balance sheet has always had some size, of course, but the Fed historically has not set a public target for it. (Steve Liesman made this same point on CNBC earlier this afternoon.) The Federal Open Market Committee statement released today said that

the Committee will keep constant the Federal Reserve’s holdings of securities at their current level by reinvesting principal payments from agency debt and agency mortgage-backed securities in longer-term Treasury securities. The Committee will continue to roll over the Federal Reserve’s holdings of Treasury securities as they mature.

Why is it such a big deal to tell the public that the Fed’s securities holdings are staying steady? Because the Fed’s balance sheet today is very different from what it looked like before the crisis. Behold, what one economist nicknamed the “magma chart”: the Fed balance sheet, courtesy of the Cleveland Fed.

via The Magma Chart – Economix Blog – NYTimes.com.

health:  scary … high fructose corn syrup is in everything.

Pancreatic tumor cells use fructose to divide and proliferate, U.S. researchers said on Monday in a study that challenges the common wisdom that all sugars are the same.

Tumor cells fed both glucose and fructose used the two sugars in two different ways, the team at the University of California Los Angeles found.

They said their finding, published in the journal Cancer Research, may help explain other studies that have linked fructose intake with pancreatic cancer, one of the deadliest cancer types.

via Cancer cells slurp up fructose, US study finds | Reuters.

healthcare, our children:  To be honest, my boys are ready to move on …

Many pediatric practices are working hard to make their offices comfortable for older teens, with separate waiting areas, reading material and even adolescent specialists on staff. And many form bonds with patients that last into adulthood.

When a former patient called after he’d had unprotected sex and had questions, “I was honored,” says Charles Wibbelsman, chief of adolescent medicine at Kaiser Permanente in San Francisco.

via Young Adults Find It’s Hard to Part With the Pediatrician – WSJ.com.

libraries, digital media, end of an era:

Library watchers say it could be the first school library, public or private, to forsake ink and paper in favor of e-books. It also represents the first time a school has placed its students’ intellectual lives so fully into the hands of a few online publishers and makers of electronic devices.

Researching the Boston Molasses Disaster of 1919? Use your laptop (handed out to students on financial aid) or a library PC to access the 13 databases to which Cushing now subscribes.

Reading David Copperfield in English class? A librarian will gladly download it onto one of 65 Kindle handheld electronic book readers from Amazon.com, which circulate like library books.

Three big-screen TVs now greet visitors at the entrance, and the old circulation desk is now a coffee bar. Officially it’s called Cushing Cyber Cafe, but students quickly nicknamed the spot “12K Cafe” after its $12,000 espresso machine.

via School chooses Kindle; are libraries for the history ‘books’? – USATODAY.com.

random: Random acts of kindness. 🙂

For the past year, Laura Miller has been living a double life of sorts: administrative assistant by day, secret agent of kindness by night.

The 32-year-old Duquesne University employee only recently revealed herself as the woman behind “Secret Agent L,” a giver of random acts of kindness that has been brightening the days of unsuspecting Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, residents since July 2009.

The project began, Miller says, with the birthday of one of her blog readers who had become a close friend. But instead of asking for the latest book on the best-seller list or an iTunes gift card, the friend suggested Miller perform an act of kindness in her name.

So with a single, lavender hydrangea bloom tucked under the windshield wipers of a random vehicle, Secret Agent L was born.

via ‘Secret agent’ is on a mission: Spreading kindness – CNN.com.

random, The President: Does the president travel with his passport and get stamps like everyone else?  For the answer … West Wing Week: Mailbag Day, Summer Edition | The White House.

tv, gLee: TV vs. reality …

“It’s tight on time, definitely,” says choreographer Zach Woodlee. “We usually get, per number, a max of eight hours. Then we sing and dance.”

via Putting it together at ‘Glee’ – Live From: Live Event and Entertainment Coverage – USATODAY.com.

alumni, travel: Ever taken an alumni association sponsored trip?

But the latest economic slump was enough to convince some schools it’s time to mess with tradition. At Dartmouth College, for instance, traveler numbers fell by 40 percent last year, with a few trips getting just one or two bookings. In response, Roberta Moore, director of alumni continuing education and travel for the school, is rewriting the script. Despite the fact that Dartmouth’s typical alumni traveler is 66 to 68 years old, Moore has beefed up active trips like mountain biking in Utah’s national parks and trekking up Mount Kilimanjaro. (“People are in a lot better shape than they used be,” she says.) And while many schools still shy away from the déclassé implications of adding cheaper trips, Moore is testing several low-cost destinations this year, including a week in Scotland, starting at just $1,419. Moore says the average age of her travelers has held steady but that she’ll keep trying, since wooing younger alums is “the eternal challenge.”

via Alumni Trips Go Back to School – Spending – Travel – SmartMoney.com.

Davidson:  Sorry, guys … the new Wildcat seems lame to me or maybe I just don’t like change.

Davidson College Athletics – Davidson Launches New Spirit Marks.

03
Jun
10

6.3.2010 … why couldn’t snoring be a white noise? … let it rain! …

life:  nuisance!

Snoring is the hoarse or harsh sound that occurs when your breathing is obstructed in some way while you’re sleeping. Sometimes snoring may indicate a serious health condition. In addition, snoring can be a nuisance to your partner.

via Snoring – MayoClinic.com.

random:

… siblings from Earth’s sister planet, Cadigan and DeCaria shared many responsibilities, including maintaining “secret exclusive contact with The Beatles.” This was during the height of Beatlemania.

The Beatles “came to us for advice about their songs and how to deal with fame and other important matters,” Cadigan says. “On occasion, they would ask us to use our highly developed shape-shifting ability to become them, and finish recording sessions and concert tours when they were too tired to go on themselves.”

via In Secret World, Girls Of The ’60s Advised The Beatles : NPR.

technology, Miss Manners, Apple iPad:

But the pace of technology is blazingly fast and creates new situations daily. So we have to apply a basic tenet of etiquette — be considerate of those around us — to constantly adapt to how we, as a society, want to use technology.

via How to avoid being rude when using your iPad – CNN.com.

cars, green: OK, so I want an electric mini … please …Get in Line for 4,600 Free Electric Car Battery Chargers – Wheels Blog – NYTimes.com.

healthcare, heartbreaking: When Boomers Get Dementia – Room for Debate Blog – NYTimes.com.

baseball:  Unbelievable …

–“THE BLOWN CALL HEARD ‘ROUND THE WORLD” — CLASSY REACTION FROM THE YOUNG PITCHER, WHO WAS ROBBED – Bob Wojonowski in the Detroit News: “This was a flash that will be frozen forever, a moment when incredible athletic achievement met astonishing human failure. It collided in the ninth inning of Armando Galarraga’s pitching masterpiece, when one blown umpire call halted history, and created its own. Galarraga essentially pitched the first perfect game in Tigers history, retiring all 27 Indians batters he faced Wednesday night, except that the 27th batter, Jason Donald, was called safe at first by umpire Jim Joyce. The ump later admitted he missed the call, felt horrible about it and apologized for it.” Story …Watch the blown call. Baseball Video Highlights & Clips | CLE@DET: Donald breaks up perfect game in the ninth – Video | MLB.com: Multimedia.

via Mike Allen’s Playbook 24/7 – POLITICO.com.

random, LOL:  gotta love The Onion.

National Parks Closed For Annual Remajestification

via National Parks Closed For Annual Remajestification | The Onion – America’s Finest News Source.




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