Posts Tagged ‘retirement

10
Jun
13

6.10.13 … Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, enjoy your retirement on earth! …

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield, retirement, kudos:  I loved getting to know Chris Hadfield while he was on the ISS.  Enjoy your life on earth.  And thank you for sharing your photos, music and wit with the world.

 

Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield  meets with Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper (R) and his wife Laureen at 24 Sussex Drive in Ottawa 10 June 2013

A Canadian astronaut who captivated the world with his photos and videos on social media from the International Space Station (ISS) is retiring.

Cmdr Chris Hadfield, 53, says he is making good on a promise to his wife to move back to Canada after 30 years.

The astronaut was the first Canadian to command the ISS. He returned from his third space mission in May.

The Ontario-native will retire on 3 July from the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) and move home from the US.

He has lived in Texas since he became a fighter pilot in the late-1980s and was later assigned to the Nasa Johnson Space Center in Houston by the CSA.

‘True Canadian hero’

Cmdr Hadfield previously retired from the Canadian Air Force in 2003 after 25 years of service.

Chris Hadfield’s version of Space Oddity, recorded on the ISS

In a press conference outside Montreal, Cmdr Hadfield said he was ready for the next stage of his life.

“I’ve had such an interesting career and after 35 years it’s time to step down,” Cmdr Hadfield was quoted as saying by the CBC. “I’m the last astronaut of my class that’s still around.”

He said he had no immediate plans on his next move, especially as he works on physically recovering from his time in space.

While in space, Cmdr Hadfield tweeted about his life at the ISS to his one million followers, sharing striking images of the Earth.

His zero-gravity cover of David Bowie’s Space Oddity, made as he stepped down from command of the station, went viral in May.

“Chris Hadfield has inspired all Canadians, especially our next-generation of scientists and engineers,” Chris Alexander, parliamentary secretary for defence, said in a statement.

“His exceptional career achievements make him a true Canadian hero and icon.”

via BBC News – Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield to retire.

07
May
13

5.7.13 … catching up … RIP, but I don’t know Antonia …

Antonia Larroux,  RIP, Obituary, NY, bookshelf, The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasures of Obituaries:  An obit worth reading if you are into that sort of thing. I obviously am …

Antonia W. “Toni” Larroux Bay St. Louis, MS Waffle House lost a loyal customer on April 30, 2013. Antonia W. “Toni” Larroux died after a battle with multiple illnesses: lupus, rickets, scurvy,

Anyone wearing black will not be admitted to the memorial. She is not dead. She is alive.

via Antonia Larroux Obituary: View Antonia Larroux’s Obituary by New York Times.

And now I have a new book on my list: The Dead Beat: Lost Souls, Lucky Stiffs, and the Perverse Pleasures of Obituaries. Thanks, Paul!

Brandon Plantation,  For Sale, Thomas Jefferson-Designed,  Virginia Manor House: If you buy it, I will come visit!  I like the style fine … but it looks remarkably similar to the Lawn at UVA. Oh, wait, Mr. Jefferson designed that one, too.

Brandon Plantation

Brandon Plantation, a designated National Historic Landmark, hits the auction block June 26, only the third time it’s changed hands since the colonization of Jamestown in 1607.

The 4,487-acre property includes a 7-bed, 6.5-bath Palladian-style main house that was “substantially” designed by Jefferson (whose most famous architectural feat, Monticello, lies 120 miles away).

Fields at Brandon, the “oldest continuous agricultural operation in the U.S.,” continue to produce corn (189 bushels per acre in 2012), wheat (78 bushels) and soybeans (50 bushels). The property also includes six square formal gardens, a swimming pool, tennis courts and two river cottages.

via Brandon Plantation For Sale: Thomas Jefferson-Designed Virginia Manor House, Plantation Up For Auction (PHOTOS).

Ripe “Old” Age, NEXT Church, Katherine Kerr, FPC-Charlotte:

 Let me be clear that respecting younger generations does not have to come at the cost of disregarding the older generations.  As the church of Jesus Christ in twenty-first century America, we have enough challenges ahead of us, such as cultural, economic, and ecclesial battles to name a few. We do not need to add generational battles too.  We are all in this together, and we should start acting like it.  We may have differing ideas about worship styles and clerical garb, sermon prep practices and models for ministry, but when it comes down to it, we are all for the same thing – to worship and serve the Lord.  And there’s no minimum or maximum age for that.

via Ripe “Old” Age – NEXT Church.

John Kasay, retirement, Carolina Panther , CharlotteObserver.com:  A very nice and very deserved gesture!

John Kasay stands with members of his family as team owner Jerry Richardson speaks on Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at Bank of America Stadium. Kasay a kicker signed a one-day contract with the Carolina Panthers so that he could retire as a Panther.

via Photos – John Kasay retires as a Panther – CharlotteObserver.com.

 

Mark Sanford, 1st Congressional District – SC, Jim Roberts @nycjim, twitter, Reuters Digital:  Jim Roberts @nycjim  (Jim Roberts is executive editor of Reuters Digital, a full-time student of the news) just tweeted:

Mark Sanford will now be able to watch the Super Bowl with his son in his Capitol Hill office.

11
Feb
13

2.11.13 … What does a Pope do in retirement? …

Pope Benedict XVI , Bishop of Rome Emeritus, retirement, legal issues, papal enclave, twitter:  I don’t think anyone was expecting this … I woke up early today and was immediately hit with the news that the Pope was going to retire effective 2.28.13.  And i immediate wondered out loud on FB, “So the Pope is going to resign. What does a Pope do in retirement?”  Noting that, according to BR:

“The last pope to resign was Gregory XII, who left the papacy in 1415 to end what was known as the Western Schism among numerous competitors for the papacy.”

My pundit friends went into action …

BT: Invite him to bingo

MP: Retired Popes fly around in their cool hats with their flying nuns.

 And then the twitters started tow tweet …

Nate Silver
@fivethirtyeight
No pope has resigned since 1415, which is also the last time the Pittsburgh Pirates had a winning record.

Conan O’Brien Presents: Team Coco

The Pope resigned earlier today & Dan Brown has already written two thrillers about it.

via The Pope resigned….

Team Coco ‏@TeamCoco

Strange but true: for over 2000 years, Cardinals have picked the new Pope via rock/paper/scissors.

But my favorite was the husband of a friend …

David McDaniel ‏@DMcDaniel

Poor Notre Dame. They lose the BCS championship, then the Manti Te’o thing. Now they face the 2013 season with a rookie pope.

And the political cartoons … field day …

.

via The Platzner Post

But there are lots of interesting issues given that the last pope to retire was Gregory XII, who left the papacy in 1415 …

Q: How does one refer to a retired pope?

Benedict XVI would technically retain the title, Bishop of Rome Emeritus. “I doubt he would use the papal titles, but that’s something to be decided on,” said Father Kaslyn.

via A Legal Guide To Papal Resignation – Law Blog – WSJ.

And the consensus is … all bets are off.

The papal conclave—the secretive meeting of Roman Catholic cardinals to elect a new pope—is expected to start shortly after the end of February, when Pope Benedict XVI, at 85 years old, said Monday he would step down.

The more than 120 voting cardinals will likely debate whether to select a low-key gradualist or someone who is going to govern with grand gestures, such as Pope Benedict’s predecessor John Paul II. In recent conclaves, cardinals have been split between those who take a more conservative approach to the church’s teaching and those open to changing some of the age-old tenets of Catholicism.

There is a saying among Vatican watchers that cardinals who are tipped as popes before the conclave begins rarely actually get the job. “The race is really wide open,” said Giuseppe Di Leo, a longtime Vatican journalist for Italian radio Radio Radicale.

The voting by cardinals to elect the next pope takes place behind the locked doors of the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel. Under highly detailed procedures, only cardinals under the age of 80 can vote in the conclave, and secret ballots can be cast once on the first day, then twice during each subsequent morning and evening session.

Cardinals must have a two-thirds majority to elect a new pope; a runoff may be held between the top two candidates if the voting goes as far as 34 rounds. Except for periodic pauses, the voting continues until a new pontiff is elected.

When a successor is elected, the ballots are burned dry to produce the white smoke that signals the church has a new pope.

via Contenders in Line to be Pope – WSJ.com.

And I also did a quick review of popes … List of popes – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

“Solvitur Ambulando”  – It is solved by walking, labyrinth walks, Avondale Presbyterian Church, Lenten practices: 

I took a nighttime walk on February 11. It is 62° in Charlotte and so warm that I am walking in shoes flats with no socks like it’s summertime. I am wearing only a sweater, too.
The walk was quite nice, my first nighttime walk on the Avondale labyrinth. It is not well lighted, so I am making my way partly from limited visibility and partly from memory. Their are branches from the recent storms on the labyrinth.
I can’t wait to start my Lenten practice of walking a labyrinth  “almost daily”. Forty two days of walking and solving, I am very very excited.

IMG_5524 IMG_5517 IMG_5521 IMG_5522 IMG_5516

Marthame Sanders, Sermon: Changing God,  i feast therefore i am, Transfiguration Sunday: As I mentioned yesterday, I loved my own pastor’s sermon yesterday, but since I follow Mathame, I really enjoyed his as well … and they are very different.

When it comes to the church, I think we can fear change because we think we are messing with something that is eternal and unchanging. In other words, rather than asking God to change us, we worry that are trying to change God (or, at least, repackage God) in order to please people. I also think that this fear comes from a good place. Is the change we implement a cop out? When we do things like broaden our styles of music, or project worship information on a screen or a wall, are we dumbing down faith, cheapening it? Or are we using current technology in the way that Martin Luther utilized the new-fangled printing press to spread the word of God? Or, perhaps, is there something else altogether at stake?

And that is the challenge of Transfiguration, of trusting in a God who changes us more than we could ever change God. You see, the temptation of that moment on the mountain top is to stay there. Peter wants to build shrines, to preserve the spectacle in a way that it would last. The truth is that these moments are often fleeting. We get glimpses of heaven here. You know what I’m talking about. It’s the celebratory feeling of a full Sanctuary on Christmas Eve; or the intimate power of footwashing on Maundy Thursday; or the intellectual and spiritual challenge of Bible study; or the blessed gift of serving in the Food Pantry or Habitat or Journey or the Bargain Shop. There are moments in our life as a church that we are tempted to think, “If only it could be like this all of the time!” If only we could enshrine these moments and live within them now and forever. If only…

But that’s the thing: the purpose of these moments is not the possibility of their permanence. Their very power is in the fact that they are fleeting. The question is whether we are open to allowing them to change us…now and forever.

What is that moment today? Where is your glimpse of the kingdom going to be? Will you recognize it when you see it? Will you make room for it to change you?

via Changing God « i feast therefore i am.

Jerry Sandusky, faith, St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, CNN Belief Blog: Although I did not attend this session, my cohort in crime did … And I came away wondering what was Sandusky’s faith and how had his faith home responded to the Sandusky’s crimes.  Did St. Paul’s United Methodist Church exhibit “moral courage?”

Ethical Action and the Penn State Scandal: Lessons for Lawyers

Kimberly J. Strom-Gottfried, Smith P. Theimann Distinguished Professor for Ethics and Professional Practice, UNC School of Social Work

this session will explore ethical issues raised by the Penn State football scandal, most particularly, the ethical dilemmas raised by actions by Jerry Sandusky in connection with the campus football program and Sandusky’s Second Mile charity developed to help disadvantaged young people.

Ed Zeiders, the senior pastor at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, did not shy away from addressing the conviction of his congregant and friend on child sex abuse charges, asking his congregation to “pray for all of those who are victims and for all of those who are predators.”

Zeiders began his sermon with a question.

“In light of the misery, sorrow and suffering we see, affecting every aspect of our life, within us, in the midst of us, and around us – what are we to do,” he asked. “The world needs an answer, our community deserves an answer, and we need to answer together what is the most efficacious way to move forward from here.”

CNN’s Belief Blog: the faith angles behind the big stories

Saying that the eyes of the nation are fixed on the State College community and, to some degree, on the community of St Paul’s, Zeiders said that “in the midst of the raging storms around us” the church had an opportunity.

“If ever a local congregation has been given a moment to…..reveal what it means to be Christian,” Zeiders said, “this is that congregation in this moment in history.”

Zeiders spoke to what he said was the transformative power and saving grace of God, making a connection between faith and ethical behavior. “If we are to claim Jesus as savior,” he said, “we must, without fail, come face-to-face with our own morality.”

via Sandusky’s pastor addresses conviction from pulpit – CNN Belief Blog – CNN.com Blogs.

Rep. Rick Nolan (MN -D), Constitutional Amendment, Citizens United: This will be interesting to watch.

A Democratic Minnesota congressman is introducing a constitutional amendment designed to overturn the Supreme Court’s decision in the Citizens United case that lifted many restrictions on corporate spending in political elections.

Rep. Rick Nolan unveiled the proposal on Monday along with members of Move to Amend, a grassroots coalition that has been seeking support on the local level in communities for the amendment. They say political campaign spending should not be a form of speech protected under the First Amendment.

The 2010 Citizens United ruling paved the way for a flood of campaign cash from corporations, unions and wealthy interests.

Any effort to amend the U.S. Constitution faces daunting hurdles.

Supporters of the Citizens United decision say it upholds the First Amendment guarantee of free speech.

via Rick Nolan, Minnesota Democrat, Unveils Constitutional Amendment To Overturn Citizens United.

Pioneers! O Space Pioneers!, Walt Whitman, NASA,  mashup, Brain Pickings:

“Conquering, holding, daring, venturing as we go the unknown ways, Pioneers! O pioneers!”

On the heels of yesterday’s animated adaptation of Sagan’s Pale Blue Dot and Ray Bradbury’s passionate case for space exploration earlier this week comes a dynamic mashup of Walt Whitman’s poem “Pioneers! O Pioneers!” and awe-inspiring footage of mankind’s cosmic triumphs. Conceived before Neil Armstrong’s passing but released this past Labor Day, the video pays homage to the beloved pioneer and casts a hopeful eye towards the future of space exploration.

via Pioneers! O Space Pioneers! A Walt Whitman + NASA Mashup | Brain Pickings.

Chicago, bars,  best bar in the world,  Roger Ebert, Roger Ebert’s Journal, The Canterbury Tales, Chaucer, The Host, The Geriatric Genius: I just like this Ebert post. 🙂

Bea’s gift inspired Bruce’s blog, The Geriatric Genius, in which Elliott shows himself in the direct line of descent from the Host in the 15th century The Canterbury Tales. Chaucer’s character is the central figure and narrator of the Tales, the one who knows all the others and is their common bond, yet rarely takes an active role during their pilgrimage. It is he who names them, convenes their nightly meetings, observes what they do, hears their secrets, and tells of their weaknesses.

And briefly, when the sun had gone to rest,

So had I spoken with them, every one,

That I was of their fellowship anon,

And made agreement that we’d early rise

To take the road, as you I will apprise.

But none the less, whilst I have time and space,

Before yet farther in this tale I pace,

It seems to me accordant with reason

To inform you of the state of every one

Of all of these, as it appeared to me,

And who they were, and what was their degree,

And even how arrayed there at the inn.

The Host relates the stories of such as the Wife of Bath, the Nun’s Priest, the Three Rioters and Old John the Carpenter, “who foolishly marries a lively young girl.” Bruce’s blog follows the nightly adventures of such regulars as Street Jimmy, Bruce Faggypants, Ruben Nine Toes, D Train, Porn Star, the Cougar, Buzzkill, Larry Asshole, Connie the Crack Whore, Craig the Drunk, Fatal Attraction, Sleepy John, Johnny Ale, and the Counselor, waging their battles against reality. Many people without code names also come in, including talent from Second City across the street and Zanie’s comedy club around the corner, and yuppies, cops, robbers and respectable yuppies–whose tales don’t interest Bruce. Yuppies visited the bar twice in the recent indie movie “Other Children,” which completely failed to capture its character.

via The best bar in the world that I know about – Roger Ebert’s Journal.

Commencement Speeches, lists, Conan O’Brien, failure, Brain Pickings:  I think my favorite is Conan’s …

For decades, in show business, the ultimate goal of every comedian was to host The Tonight Show. It was the Holy Grail, and like many people I thought that achieving that goal would define me as successful. But that is not true. No specific job or career goal defines me, and it should not define you. In 2000 — in 2000 — I told graduates to not be afraid to fail, and I still believe that. But today I tell you that whether you fear it or not, disappointment will come. The beauty is that through disappointment you can gain clarity, and with clarity comes conviction and true originality.

via 5½ Timeless Commencement Speeches to Teach You to Define Your Own Success | Brain Pickings.

St. Francis of Assisi, quotes, art, Rawforbeauty:

via Rawforbeauty.

Apple, Curved-Glass Smart Watch, Dick Tracy, Inspector Gadget , James Bond, NYTimes.com: Dick Tracy … Inspector Gadget  … James Bond … me 🙂

Dick Tracy and James Bond had watches that served as computers. Tim Cook of Apple wears a Nike FuelBand, which tracks his physical activity.

Dick Tracy had one. As did Inspector Gadget and James Bond. A watch that doubled as a computer, two-way radio, mapping device or television.

Though such a device has been lost to science fiction comics and spy movies of the era before smartphones, the smart watch might soon become a reality, in the form of a curved glass device made by Apple.

via Disruptions: Apple Is Said to Be Developing a Curved-Glass Smart Watch – NYTimes.com.

Les Miserables, Victor Hugo, civil war, Civil War, random, NYTimes.com: Random, but a very interesting tie-in …

Victor Hugo’s “Les Miserables” was published in 1862 and English translations of the five parts that constitute the novel began to appear in America by year’s end. Hugo had begun the sprawling novel in the 1840s, put it aside, and come back to complete it between 1860 and 1862. He was an opponent of slavery, and in 1859 defended John Brown. “Insurrection,” he said, was a “sacred duty.” In the novel, Hugo name-checked Brown in a list of celebrated revolutionaries that included Washington, Bolivar and Garibaldi. Hugo’s focus was the July Revolution of 1830, but it is possible he had the American conflict in mind when he wrote, “Civil war … What did the words mean? Was there any such thing as ‘foreign war?’ Was not all warfare between men warfare between brothers?”

via In Camp, Reading ‘Les Miserables’ – NYTimes.com

Jazzy Vegetarian, Public Television, Blog Talk Radio: I think I will have to record this … Jazzy Vegetarian, Season 2 on Public Television 02/06 by The Jazzy Vegetarian | Blog Talk Radio.

2013 snow storm,  NYC, Bloomberg:  6 more inches to NYC!

A fast-moving storm is expected to drop new snow from the mid-Atlantic area to southern New England, including New York City and Long Island, the day after tomorrow, according to Brian Edwards at AccuWeather Inc.

A “narrow band of nuisance snow” will spread from the Ohio River Valley into Washington, Baltimore and Philadelphia during the day Feb. 13, and snow may start in New York, Long Island and southern New England after dark, said Edwards, based in State College, Pennsylvania.

via Fast-Moving Storm May Bring 6 More Inches of Snow to NYC – Bloomberg.

Downton Abbey, #DowntonPBS, Twitter:  A few of my favorites from last night:

VANITY FAIR (@VanityFair)

2/10/13, 9:30 PM

Edith, post-Edwardian Gail Collins, hums “Stronger” while marching out of the newspaper offices. #DowntonPBS

2/10/13, 9:35 PM

Enrollment in the Downton Malfeasance Society now open to new members. Bring your brooms. #DowntonPBS

Laurel Ann Nattress (@Austenprose)

2/10/13, 9:47 PM

Mrs. Hughes now the new philosophical wit at Downton. #DowntonPBS

Laurel Ann Nattress (@Austenprose)

2/10/13, 10:01 PM

RT @EmmaDVelez: RT @theLadyGrantham: Well, that is an easy caveat to accept, because I am never wrong. #DowntonPBS

27
Jun
11

‎6.27.2011 … I just paid $4.99 for 4 Dewey’s oatmeal cream-filled cookie sandwiches … you know like Little Debbies … these were significantly better, but I think you can get a dozen Little Debbie’s for $1.29 … FYI Dewey’s is the Winston-Salem Moravian cookie/butter sugar cake bakery … Rule of Life: Never go to the grocery hungry …

music, kith/kin:  Today’s selection is from my second cousin …

Beyonce’s Single Ladies, only I’m putting other words to it for whatever it is I am doing. Like I look down at my foster dog Chuckie and start singing to him “Mister Chuckalucks, Mister Chuckalucks”  — YouTube – Beyoncé – Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It).

food – Southern, Moravian, Winston-Salem, Dewey’s: I learned to love Dewey’s sugar cake because one of my favorite lawyers, a Winston-Salem native, brought them back to all the folks at the firm for Christmas … now they sell them year-round at the Harris Teeter.  They really are good … but stay away from the 500 calorie oatmeal cream-filled cookie cakes. Dewey’s / Home

 Davidson College, goats, kudzu, followup:  i know you really wanted an update …

Those goats are still at it, feasting on all the kudzu out on the Davidson College cross country trail. Resident Louise Mazur was biking on the trail Sunday afternoon and send this photo and the note below. Meanwhile, you can go visit the goats yourself on July 9, in a nature outing organized by the World of Wonder program of Davidson Lands Conservancy. Details below.

Two weeks ago, Davidson College sent a rented herd of goats out onto its back campus to help with an overgrowth of kudzu. The goats are expected to eradicate it all – right down to the dirt. (See June 14, 2011, “Davidson College’s new employees.”)

Mike and Louise Mazur stopped to see their progress Sunday, and Ms. Mazur sent this note:

Mike and I were riding bikes on the trail Sunday afternoon and wanted to send you an updated picture of the dog and the goats!  The goats are making quite a lot of progress!

via Photo of the Day: The goat watcher  | DavidsonNews.net.

movie, animated films, lists:  Pinocchio is the list makers all time favorite … we are not on the same wavelength …

They’ve enthralled or terrified generations of kids, and now they’re giant worldwide blockbusters. So what are the best animated features of all time? Using an obscure system of weights and measures, TIME movie critic Richard Corliss has compiled and annotated the countdown, from No. 25 (Lady and the Tramp) to No. 1 (see for yourself). Are your favorites on the list? Let the great debate commence; we know it’ll be animated.

via Pinocchio, 1940 – The 25 All-TIME Best Animated Films – TIME.

Supreme Court, random, social networking:  Of course, they don’t tweet …

Asked how the Supreme Court has dealt with the risks, “I sit down with incoming clerks at the beginning of the year — as soon as we get back — and go through a number of things they have to be aware of, and that’s one of them,” Roberts said referring to the use of social media on the job. “I tell them that they obviously shouldn’t be tweeting about what they’re doing — whether they have Web sites or whatever.”

“I also appreciate that it’s a generational thing, and the idea of not being connected in a particular way can be problematic for them,” Roberts said, adding that different members of the court have varying levels of affinity for social media. “I don’t think any of us have a Facebook page or tweet, whatever that is,” he went on to light laughter.

But the Court is not a building full of technological luddites. “Technology is making inroads, I mean we are — we find when we’re traveling it’s easier to have, some of us, briefs on some of the products where you can have them electronically available, carrying them,” said Roberts holding his hands up as if he was holding a tablet.

Roberts also acknowledged that, for the courts, new technology also presents a challenge in terms of its impact on the law itself, saying “It’s going to be a great challenge both in a substantitive area and for many of us to try and keep up with new technology.”

via Chief Justice John Roberts: ‘I don’t think any of us…tweet, whatever that is’ – Ideas@Innovations – The Washington Post.

food, Durham, places:  OK, I will stop by Durham and try out its rejuvenated downtown.

“The rejuvenation, it spread like wildfire,” Mr. Filippini added. “It’s almost like you can hear the heartbeat of Durham right in that couple-block area.”

via Durham Dining – Pies, Panini and Barbecue – NYTimes.com.

travel, food:  No, excerpt here … I thought this article silly.  Pack Your Own Food for Your Next Flight – NYTimes.com.

President Bill Clinton, Great Recession:  You know I am still amazed that Pres. Clinton was able to salvage his dignity.  Article is worth reading.

14 WAYS TO PUT AMERICA BACK TO WORK

Next week in Chicago, the Clinton Global Initiative will focus on America for the first time, inviting business and political leaders to make specific commitments in support of the former president’s jobs blueprint, which he details below.

via It’s Still the Economy, Stupid – Newsweek.

personal finance, Great Recession, retirement:  The increase of borrowing from retirement accounts is staggering …

Debt is always risky. And this debt carries the extra risk that you could have to pay it off at the very time when you aren’t earning a salary. If you leave or lose your job you must have a feasible means of immediately paying off the loan.

“Take only the minimum you need, not the maximum you can get,” says Ms. Hess. Your loan should fund an asset of enduring value, advises Prof. Madrian: “If you have to leave your job, you can’t sell the vacation to pay off your loan.” Don’t take a loan of last resort to splurge at a resort.

via The Intelligent Investor: The Case for Raiding Your 401(k) – WSJ.com.

college, advice:  Another article that I thought lame … I do not know a kid who has ever boned up on foreign language the summer before going to college.

Brush up on a foreign language. At many colleges, the biggest single requirement is two years of a foreign language. Many freshmen have had a smattering (or more) of some foreign language in high school, whether it be Spanish or French, or for the more enterprising, and global-minded, Mandarin or Arabic. Whatever the case, the summer before college is an excellent time to get ahead on your language skills. If travel abroad is in your plans, pick a country that speaks the language you’re working on; if Spanish is your intended tongue, volunteer work in most communities can put you in a situation where Spanish is routinely spoken.

For the electronic-minded, there is a wealth of foreign-language programming on the Internet. For example, livemocha, where, the site says, you can chat for free with over 10 million native speakers in nearly 40 languages; the various “pod” sites — ChinesePod, FrenchPod, SpanishPod, and ItalianPod – where you’ll find over 1,000 podcasts, with review, practice and reinforcement; and radiolingua, where you’ll find the popular CoffeeBreakSpanish and CoffeeBreakFrench podcasts as well as the One-Minute podcasts in, among other languages, Irish, Polish, Russian and even Luxembourgish.

via A Pre-College Summer To-Do List – NYTimes.com.

education:  Bottom line – education matters.  Great article.

ALMOST a century ago, the United States decided to make high school nearly universal. Around the same time, much of Europe decided that universal high school was a waste. Not everybody, European intellectuals argued, should go to high school.

It’s clear who made the right decision. The educated American masses helped create the American century, as the economists Claudia Goldin and Lawrence Katz have written. The new ranks of high school graduates made factories more efficient and new industries possible.

Today, we are having an updated version of the same debate. Television, newspapers and blogs are filled with the case against college for the masses: It saddles students with debt; it does not guarantee a good job; it isn’t necessary for many jobs. Not everybody, the skeptics say, should go to college.

The argument has the lure of counterintuition and does have grains of truth. Too many teenagers aren’t ready to do college-level work. Ultimately, though, the case against mass education is no better than it was a century ago.

The evidence is overwhelming that college is a better investment for most graduates than in the past. A new study even shows that a bachelor’s degree pays off for jobs that don’t require one: secretaries, plumbers and cashiers. And, beyond money, education seems to make people happier and healthier.

Then there are the skeptics themselves, the professors, journalists and others who say college is overrated. They, of course, have degrees and often spend tens of thousands of dollars sending their children to expensive colleges.

I don’t doubt that the skeptics are well meaning. But, in the end, their case against college is an elitist one — for me and not for thee. And that’s rarely good advice.

via College Degrees Are Valuable Even for Careers That Don’t Require Them – NYTimes.com.

GA politics, random:  Is someone just asking for a fight …

Georgia car tags may be about to get a dose of religion. The state Department of Revenue on Friday posted images of the eight semi-finalist entries in its competition to design a new look for your back bumper.

Three of those eight incorporate “In God We Trust” – the same motto found on U.S. currency:

Online voting concludes July 8. The three license plates garnering the most votes will be presented to Gov. Nathan Deal. There the selection process gets foggy – the press release merely says the winner will be announced July 15.

But if a car tag bearing the word “God” makes it to the finals, it’s hard to imagine a Republican politician who would want to be seen rejecting it.

Still, if a declaration of faith is inevitable, we would at least suggest adding an asterisk, followed in small print with this:

“*All others must provide proof of legal U.S. residency.”

via Your morning jolt: Georgia car tag nominees and ‘In God We Trust’ | Political Insider.

culture, home:  I found this interesting … they go to find their old world at a  Starbucks.

Before Abed Ellafdi emigrated from Rabat, Morocco, to Northern Virginia six years ago, a friend gave him a tip: When you get to America, go to the Starbucks at Skyline.

From afar, there is nothing remarkable about this Starbucks in a Falls Church strip mall a couple of miles west of Interstate 395. Situated between an Einstein Bros. Bagels and an Office Depot in an area known as Skyline, it faces a vast parking lot, beyond which is another strip mall, that soulless landmark of American commercial culture.

But come closer and enter a world where Moroccans talk soccer scores, Egyptians discuss revolution and Somalis argue over politics, all in a coffee chain store that has become an unlikely hangout for immigrants seeking the flavor of home.

After long days working as cab drivers, construction workers, scientists and business owners, they fill the outdoor seats each evening, mimicking old world cafes where men unwind and catch up over backgammon, hookahs and endless cups of coffee.

“It’s really part of our culture, to come to the café and talk about the events that happen,” said Ellafdi, an energetic 31-year-old who works in construction and lives in Alexandria. “As Muslims we don’t drink, we don’t

via Immigrants gather at a Starbucks in Northern Virginia for a taste of home – The Washington Post.

movies, movie scores, Bernard Herrmann: I had actually never heard o f him … but look at the list of his scores.  Pretty impressive.

June 29, 2011 marks the centenary of the birth of Bernard Herrmann, one of America’s most innovative and influential composers. He is best known for his film scores for such classics as “Citizen Kane,” “Vertigo,” “Psycho” and “Taxi Driver” – music that forever changed the way we listen to movies.

His collaborations with directors Orson Welles, Alfred Hitchcock, Francois Truffaut, Brian De Palma and Martin Scorsese are landmarks in cinema. And while the fiery and temperamental artist became a pariah to many in the Hollywood film industry (he was infamously fired by Hitchcock for refusing to write “pop” music that would sell records), Herrmann’s work is among the most revered and imitated in films today.

Herrmann also contributed substantially to radio drama and music broadcasts for nearly two decades at CBS, including his original work with Orson Welles for “Mercury Theater on the Air,” and his compositions for Rod Serling’s “The Twilight Zone.”

via Bernard Herrmann at 100 – Celebrity Circuit – CBS News.

art, public art, random acts of culture, Charlotte, Davidson:  Didn’t know we had a funded Random Acts of Culture Series in Charlotte.  I wish I had been at the Davidson Farmers’ Market last Saturday!

 

Shoppers at the Davidson Farmer’s Market got a bonus with their local berries, meats and veggies Saturday morning: a menu of arias and duets by singers from Opera Carolina. The surprise performance was one of a series of “Random Acts of Culture” organized by the Arts and Science Council of Charlotte.

The Arts & Science Council received a $30,000 grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation for the Random Acts of Culture series. They’ve also brought performances to other farmer’s markets in the region as well as shopping malls and corporate office towers.

“These performances are part of taking classical performances out of their normal venue and getting them into the street where people are,” said Ben Kubie, a community program director of of the ASC.

“Normally the reaction goes from surprise to delight, and the opera is great for that, because it’s very interactive,” Mr. Kubie said.

via Farmer’s market surprise: Opera with your tomatoes  | DavidsonNews.net.

doodles, art, Netflix:  I would have never thought to doodle on a Netflix return envelope … 🙂

Admit it, you’ve done it. You’ve taken a Sharpie to a Netflix envelope and doodled the heck out of it. Not just once, but a multitude of times. You’ve then imagined the expression of the postal worker as the envelope passed through their hands, all with a wide grin on your face. Here are some fun examples of people who publicly admit to doing just that.

Don’t be shy, share your doodled Netflix envelopes with us, email editor{at}doodlersanonymous{dot}com and don’t forget to attach a link and name for proper credit.

via Blog: Netflix Envelope Doodles – Doodlers Anonymous.

29
Mar
11

3.29.2011 … humerus is healing … but 6 more weeks of sling … :(

silly joke, kith/kin:  When Jack was baptised at 3 months he had a yeast infection (from antibiotics) and a  columnist had this story in the paper … we all died laughing reading it …

SAD NEWS – Please join me in remembering YET ANOTHER great icon of the entertainment community. The Pillsbury Doughboy died yesterday of a yeast infection and trauma complications from repeated pokes to the belly. He was 71. Dough Boy is survived by his wife Play Dough, three children, John Dough, Jane Dough, and Dosey Dough,plus they had one in the Oven. Services were held at 3:50 for about 20 minutes.

technology, retirement: scary …Want To Retire Wealthier? Start by Scanning Your Photo – WSJ.com.

kith/kin, death penalty:  Go, Bob!

While the news conference was under way, an Iredell County judge imposed consequences against the state in a double-murder trial halted last week by the late handover of evidence.

The judge declared a mistrial and barred prosecutors from pursuing the death penalty against defendant Al Bellamy. Last week, three weeks into the trial and after prosecutors finished presenting their case, defense attorneys were given about 1,700 pages of interview notes taken by a former narcotics detective.

Fair-trial advocates like Mumma were joined at the news conference by men who were wrongly convicted in cases in which their lawyers did not learn crucial investigative details. They included Greg Taylor of Raleigh and Darryl Hunt of Winston-Salem, who both spent more than 17 years in prison on faulty murder convictions before being exonerated and pardoned.

“When we have fairness in our system, then the chances of human lives being taken is slim,” Hunt said.

via Critics target NC bill limiting DAs evidence risk – CharlotteObserver.com.

Bible, history:  Great story …

A little English village church has just made a remarkable discovery.

The ornate old Bible that had been sitting in plain view on a table near the last row of pews for longer than anyone could remember is an original King James Bible – one of perhaps 200 surviving 400-year-old original editions of arguably the most important book ever printed in English.

In fact, the Bible at St. Laurence Church in Hilmarton, England, was sitting right under a hand-lettered sign saying it was an original.

The sign said it had been found in “the parish chest” in 1857, that the cover had been added, and that it was the second of the two impressions published in 1611 – the year of first publication.

But no one knew whether to believe it, parish council member Geoff Procter said. As the anniversary of publication in 1611 approached, they decided it was worth investigating.

“We had no way of knowing whether it really was a 1611 Bible so we had to get it verified somehow,” he said.

He and two other church members took it to a specialist, the Rev. David Smith at the Museum of the Book in London.

Smith knew immediately what he was looking at, Procter said.

“We put it on his table and he opened it and immediately he said, ‘Yes, this is a 1611 Bible,'” Procter remembered.

via Tiny church finds original King James Bible – CNN Belief Blog – CNN.com Blogs.

technology, media, paywall, ethics: Is it ethical for me to work around the paywall?

But the argument over the paywall has taken on a strangely moral cast for what is, after all, a business decision by a for-profit company. At Boing Boing, Cory Doctorow—who admits that he is against charging for news regardless—cited eight reasons he thinks the paywall will fail. Advertising Age’s Simon Dumeneco responded with a column that said, essentially, that people should pay for the Times because it has reporters risking their lives in Libya (unlike Boing Boing).

All of which may feel satisfying to argue. But the whole argument is based on a conundrum that would challenge the NYT magazine’s Ethicist columnist: when exactly is it immoral to go around the Times’ paywall, considering that the Times intentionally put the holes in the wall itself?

I won’t go into all the ins and outs of the paywall’s workings (see here for the Times’ FAQ). But essentially, you pay a certain rate for different kinds of unlimited access—web plus smartphone or tablet or both. Free web visits are limited to 20 articles a month. But the number of articles you can read if you access them through outside links (from blogs, Facebook, etc.) are almost unlimited. [Update: also, if like me you already subscribe to the paper version, you get digital access included.]

This is deliberate: the Times doesn’t want to lose the relevance that comes from being linked. But it also wants money, which it won’t get if you—legitimately, by its own design—read it mostly through social media and other linkers. In the eyes of the Times and its defenders, in other words, there is a certain level of reading for free that becomes freeloading. But it will deliberately not say what that is.

via The NY Times Paywall Goes Up. When Is It Immoral to Go Around It? – Tuned In – TIME.com.

RIP, Elizabeth Taylor, icons, science:  Rest in Peace, Elizabeth Taylor … but to think your gorgeous eyes were a genetic mutation.

Elizabeth Taylor wasn’t one for understatement: she had eight marriages, two Oscars, and she was a bold pioneer in AIDS activism. And let’s not forget those captivating violet eyes. Now, according to Slate’s Brow Beat blog, Taylor’s large, liquid eyes had the unusual benefit of a genetic mutation, one that left her with a double row of eyelashes.

via Were Elizabeth Taylor’s Double Eyelashes Linked with Her Heart Failure? – TIME Healthland.

RIP, Harry & David:  What … no more Christmas pears!!

Harry & David, the purveyor of fruit-filled gift baskets, filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday morning as part of an effort to reorganize its troubled finances.

The company filed what is known as a “prearranged” Chapter 11 plan in Delaware bankruptcy court, under which bondholders would take over by converting their debt holdings into equity.

via Harry & David to File for Bankruptcy – NYTimes.com.

twitter, lists:  Who do you follow … I follow the NYT … to get around the paywall!

TIME picks the 140 Twitter feeds that are shaping the conversation.

via Full List – 140 Best Twitter Feeds – TIME.

DC, Politics and Prose, Resurrections:

The Washington Post reports that two former Post reporters will buy Washington DC’s Politics and Prose bookstore.

The bookstore has become a hub for media events, hosting everybody from Mika Brzezinski to BookTV. When co-founder Carla Cohen fell ill last year, the owners decided to sell the bookstore. Cohen (pictured, via), passed away in October.

Here’s more about the sale: “Former Washington Post reporters Bradley Graham and his wife Lissa Muscatine are purchasing the iconic upper Northwest bookstore … [the owners narrowed] a flurry of propositions down to about six serious bidders, the most prominent of which was a group that included ex-New Republic editor Franklin Foer and Atlantic magazine writer Jeffrey Goldberg.” (Via Don Linn)

via Politics and Prose Bookstore Sold To Former WaPo Reporters – GalleyCat.

RIP, Geraldine Ferraro, politics, icons:  Rest in peace, Geraldine Ferraro.  You brought us a long way!

There are two things to remember when we try to make out the lessons of Geraldine Ferraro’s career. The first is overwhelmingly historic: as Democrat Walter Mondale’s running-mate in 1984, the three-time Representative from New York was the first woman (and first Italian American) to be part of a major party’s presidential ticket. The second is much more sobering: after Mondale’s defeat, Ferraro never again won elected office. Making history lasted less than four months, from Mondale’s announcement of her choice to be his vice-presidential candidate on July 19 to Ronald Reagan’s landslide re-election on Nov. 6. The consequences of history would complicate the rest of her life.

Her brief star turn at the center stage of American politics had not really been part of the Ferraro’s own plan. Logically, the next step would have been to turn her six years as a tough but efficient congresswoman into the first of many six-year terms as U.S. Senator from New York. But Mondale and the Democrats needed drama on the ticket to offset Reagan’s overwhelming lead in the polls. So, why not a woman? A shortlist was drawn-up and, after much anticipation and last minute deliberation, Ferraro was picked over Dianne Feinstein, who was then Mayor of San Francisco.

via The Pioneer: Geraldine Ferraro (1935-2011) – TIME.

01
Jan
11

1.1.11 … Happy MMXI!

New Year’s Eve, holidays, history, NYC:

The first New Year’s Eve celebration in Times Square occurred in 1904, just after the New York Times had relocated to a new building in what had been known as Longacre Square. Publisher Adolph Ochs had successfully pushed for a renaming of the district, and the triangular area where the new building sat at the intersection of 7th Avenue, Broadway, and 42nd Streets has since then been known as Times Square.

That year Ochs sponsored a party to beat all parties to celebrate the new location. An all-day street festival was capped off with a fireworks display, and there were thought to have been 200,000 people in attendance. The Times continued to sponsor a New Year’s Eve event in the area, and New Yorkers soon began going to Times Square instead of ringing in the new year at Trinity Church as had been the previous custom.

A few years later the city banned the use of fireworks, and that led to the creation of a new tradition. At first, Ochs’ team developed a creative use of lights. At the end of 1905, lights were configured to read “1906” and these electric lights flashed from the tower of the Times building, reportedly visible from miles away. The Times tower was also festooned with electric streamers that lighted the building’s four corners.

But the creative thinkers were still at work.

via Kate Kelly: The Times Square Ball Drop and the Story Behind It.

CSR: The Year in CSR: The Four Trends of 2010 | Fast Company.

random: government regulation, Chicago: “bird-friendly construction for all new city buildings.” … why?  “Highland Park is in the flight path of a number of migrating birds that like to follow the Lake Michigan shoreline”

The city council in the northern Chicago suburb of Highland Park will soon consider a proposal to require bird-friendly construction for all new city buildings.

City officials tell the Chicago Tribune that if the new law is passed, all future public buildings would be required to incorporate bird-safe architecture that’s designed to lower the number of bird collisions with buildings.

Private developers would not be affected, but Highland Park Director of Community Development Michael Blue says he hopes the city’s example would influence them as well.

Bird-friendly architecture includes curved windows and awnings, which have been shown to lower the incidences of bird collisions with buildings.

Highland Park is in the flight path of a number of migrating birds that like to follow the Lake Michigan shoreline

via Cityscapes | Chicago Tribune | Blog.

random, Disney: “”interactive cakes,” cakes equipped with miniature projectors that can produce simulations of landscapes and, naturally, Disney characters.”

According to tech blog Gizmodo, Disney has been awarded a patent for so-called “interactive cakes,” cakes equipped with miniature projectors that can produce simulations of landscapes and, naturally, Disney characters.

Okay. That’s weird enough. But, how would the cakes be interactive? When cutting a slice or using specially coded utensils, the projectors might instantly create a special effect. For example, Captain Hook might instantly appear and draw his sword as one approaches the cake with a knife.

via Dawn of the Interactive Cake | The Food Section – Food News, Recipes, and More.

iPad apps, lists:  The 7 Most Innovative iPad Apps of 2010 | Slideshows. ,iPhone App Helps You Actually Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions This Time | Fast Company, The Top Ten iPhone (and Android) Apps of 2010 – Digits – WSJ.

bookshelf, Children’s/YA lit:

If you were in the market this season for a book that would appeal to a teenager, you probably noticed that the young adult sections in bookstores and on bestsellers lists were filled with titles bearing dark and scary themes.

Whether it’s Suzanne Collins’s “The Hunger Games” trilogy or James Paterson’s “Maximum Ride” series, the popularity of post-apocalyptic fiction doesn’t seem to be abating.

via The Dark Side of Young Adult Fiction – Room for Debate – NYTimes.com.

-and-

Oh, To Be Young: The Year’s Best Teen Reads : NPR.

NBA basketball, Stephen Curry, Charlotte:  Most there were probably pleased to have the Warriors win.  That is how strong the love is for Curry in Charlotte.

Between Ellis and Charlottean Stephen Curry (24 points on 10-of-17 shooting), the Warriors scored with exceptional ease much of this game. Golden State shot 49 percent to the Bobcats’ 42 percent. But the Warriors never scored again after Ellis’ layup with 1 minute, 20 seconds left, and that should have allowed the Bobcats to steal this one.

This is what you call a teaching moment, following Silas’ first loss in three games as Larry Brown’s replacement.

“I think he was looking to penetrate, but (the Warriors) were really crowded” around him, Silas said of Jackson’s last shot.

“We called for a specific set, then didn’t get into that set. We need to point it out in practice, so next time they’ll know what to do.”

via Curry, Warriors hold off Bobcats – CharlotteObserver.com.

politics, VP Joe Biden:  Biden the linchpin?

Vice President Joe Biden is a career politician who has spent virtually his entire adult life in Washington politics — seemingly the antithesis of Barack Obama’s hope-and-change message.

Yet with a new political order in Washington, the success of Obama’s presidency hinges more and more on the negotiating skills and political instincts of his No. 2.

Facing a revived Republican Party, the White House is expected to increasingly deploy Biden as a presidential surrogate to find compromises and coax reluctant lawmakers into crossing party lines. Even Biden’s penchant for veering off message is being reevaluated inside the White House as a bridge to ordinary voters who appreciate blunt talk.

A model for Biden’s role in the next session of Congress was the recent passage of the New START nuclear arms treaty with Russia. Biden, who built a reputation as a foreign policy expert during his 36 years in the Senate, prevailed in an internal White House debate over whether to press for ratification in the lame-duck session.

via Biden is a linchpin of Obama’s presidency – chicagotribune.com.

Christmas music, music, lists:  I must like lists … it is interesting to see what others think is best or worthy. Christmas Playlist 2010 | CU Independent.

health, obesity: “Rich foods work much like heroin on the brain, making it hard to stop eating them.”

It seems so simple: Too much food and not enough activity make people fat.

But the actual processes that create and perpetuate that imbalance are proving to be astoundingly complex.

Biology, physiology, psychology, genetics and environment figure in the obesity equation to varying degrees. Scientists across North Carolina and beyond are trying to understand how, in recent decades, the population has bloated to a point that lean people are a minority.

“There is no simple answer,” said Bernard Fuemmeler, a Duke University researcher who is studying the mind-body link in obesity. “People tend to think that it may be willpower or just a lack of control. And these may be reasons, but not explanations for what is driving the epidemic.”

In their quest to find explanations, researchers across the state – at Duke, UNC Chapel Hill, Wake Forest and East Carolina universities – are discovering or are building upon findings that prove just how intractable a foe fat can be:

Rich foods work much like heroin on the brain, making it hard to stop eating them.

via Your body is thwarting your weight-loss efforts – CharlotteObserver.com.

bookshelf, lists:  More lists … Best Books Of 2010: The Complete List : NPR., Book Club Picks: Give ‘Em Something To Talk About : NPR.

real estate, I.M. Pei, Chicago, Great Recession, Great Recovery?:

The John Hancock Tower in Boston was a 62-story glass emblem of the commercial real estate market’s collapse, so its sale—for $930 million—could be a sign that the market for office buildings is picking up again.

Boston Properties Inc., the largest U.S. office real investment trust, is the new owner of New England’s tallest building in a deal announced late Wednesday. The REIT paid $289.5 million in cash and assumed $640.5 million in debt, Bloomberg reports.

The sellers, Normandy Real Estate Partners and Five Mile Capital Partners LLC, had bought the building for $661 million.

Designed by I.M. Pei, the sleek office building literally halved in value after Broadway Partners, led by young entrepreneur Scott Lawlor, bought it for $1.3 billion and then defaulted on a portion of the loan in January 2009, as what had been a booming market went bust. Because Lehman Brothers was a big lender and buyer in the commercial real estate market, its collapse a few months earlier had a domino effect.

via John Hancock Tower Sells For 930 Million In Symbolic Deal – The Business Blotter – Portfolio.com.

baby boomers, retirement:

It may be hard to believe, but the generation that transformed America as it came of age in the 1960s is now entering its senior years.

“There are 7,000 boomers a day who will be turning 65 in 2011, which is a significant birthday for sure,” says Steve Cone, executive vice president of AARP.

Sixty-five used to be the age when Americans stopped working, kicked back and embarked on serious leisure to make up for all those decades of the daily grind. But just like with every other stage of life they’ve gone through, baby boomers are expected to transform how we think about “retirement.”

Leading the way will be couples like Stephanie and Stan Zirkin. She will turn 65 on May 14; he’s already 65, not officially a boomer, but, as he puts it, “close enough.”

via Boomers Take The ‘Retire’ Out Of Retirement : NPR.

The Supreme Court: I agree …

WASHINGTON—Chief Justice John Roberts decried the partisan warfare that has slowed the appointment of federal judges to a crawl, writing in his year-end report Friday that political gamesmanship on Capitol Hill has left some courts burdened with “extraordinary caseloads.””Each political party has found it easy to turn on a dime from decrying to defending the blocking of judicial nominations, depending on their changing political fortunes,” the chief justice wrote. He called on Congress and the president “to find a long-term solution to this recurring problem.”The chief justice, a 2005 appointee of former President George W. Bush, took no position on any specific nominee, nor did he identify lawmakers by name in the annual report, which customarily includes figures on the court system’s workload and a plea for more money.But while styled as a condemnation of both parties, in practical terms the message was a knock against Senate Republicans, who have fought to minimize the imprint President Barack Obama leaves on the federal bench.

via Chief Justice Decries Brawling Over Judicial Nominees – WSJ.com.

random, music, street art:

The snow and subway stress have been no match for cellist Dale Henderson this week. In fact, with more straphangers waiting longer for trains, he’s had an easier time accomplishing his mission: sharing Bach’s cello suites with as many people as possible.

“There was incredible density,” Mr. Henderson said after playing in the Times Square station on Wednesday night. “It felt really good.”

Mr. Henderson, 34, has been performing in the city’s subways for about two years, but it’s not technically busking because he no longer accepts money in exchange for the music. “It always felt bad to be doing it for money,” he said. “People will insist. They say, ‘Just take the money.’ I don’t know why.”

via Subway Cellist Brings Music to the Masses – WSJ.com.

culture:  This reminded me of my cousins taking friends from Atlanta down to Pineview, GA, to learn how to rock on the front porch!


“We’re all overstimulated,” said Ms. Lee. “I think it’s important to stop all that for a while and see what several hours of being bored really feels like.”

via Boredom Enthusiasts Discover the Pleasures of Understimulation – WSJ.com.

history, pardons, Billy the Kid, random: Sorry, Billy.

The iconic outlaw Billy the Kid will not receive a posthumous pardon after all, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson announced Friday, his last day in office.

Stephanie Simon explains why New Mexico may give Billy The Kid a pardon for a crime he committed in 1879. Plus, President Obama may cut corporate taxes and why 2010 was turbulent for airline travelers.

Mr. Richardson had been considering whether to give the Kid a pardon based on sketchy, but plausible, historical evidence that the gun-slinging, cattle-rustling, sheriff-shooting outlaw had been promised clemency by the territorial governor in the 1880s, Lew Wallace.

Historians had produced several newspaper articles from the time quoting Mr. Wallace as saying that he had promised to wipe clean a murder charge against the Kid in return for his testimony against three men in an unrelated killing.

But in the end, “the governor just felt there wasn’t enough conclusive proof,” said Eric Witt, deputy chief of staff for Mr. Richardson. “He takes the power of the pardon very seriously.”

On ABC’s “Good Morning America,” Mr. Richardson explained further.

“The romanticism appealed to me but the facts and the evidence did not support it,” Mr. Richardson said.

via Old West Outlaw Billy the Kid Fails to Win a Pardon – WSJ.com.




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