Monday, July 14, 2008

"That's all I have to say about that."

Recently, I attended a talk given by one of the legends of my company's leadership team. Soon to retire, he gave us his reflections on thirty two years of honorable service to our company, our clients, and in no small part to our industry.

The last of a handful of meaningful observational bullet points was "Don't Worry-be Happy," and he quoted a well-known excerpt from the lesser-known piece below, which I found and wanted to share; you'll find it below.

His talk was particularly timely for me as I have been reviewing and assessing my goals of late, counting my blessings and taking stock of where I spend my time, which is increasingly at a premium as for example Number One is now a teenager and his sisters aren't far behind.

A rough sketch of my "Vertical Alignment" can be found in the subtitle to my Blog. Save God, it's all there, and pretty much in order.

...but something has to go. And for some time now, I've had a pretty good idea what.

Blogging is a lot more time consuming than it looks. And ask any blogger who is committed to regular writing, it is also quite addicting. As much as I have enjoyed the creative process, the comments and debate, I have a finite amount of time and focus and I have decided to allocate both elsewhere for the foreseeable future.

I will pop up here and there as a contributor or commenter on my favorite blogs and some day I hope to attempt a couple other forms of creative writing on my life list. Maybe even a more focussed blog some day.

I want to especially thank Smithers and Aaron for inspiring me to start my own blog and also recognize the many bloggers, listed below and to the right, who are elevating the media form as legitimate journalism; a source of news, entertainment, perspective and unfiltered opinion.

Blogging and eBay are to date, the best examples of how the internet has removed almost all friction from commerce and the flow of information. Blogs are the modern day pamphlets, not unlike the ones Benjamin Franklin distributed under his various noms de plum in the formative years of our nation.

I feel like the lead character in my favorite film, Forest Gump: for three years he runs coast to coast several times and then out of nowhere, decides to go home. My problem is like his. I can't tinker with anything. I'm either all in or all out. It's also probably why I can't watch the Vikings since 1998 any more.

After a year and a half, almost a thousand posts, 18,000 visitors (most of which looking for pictures of the tooth fairy), and $3.23 in Adsense revenue it's time for something different.

Thank you for challenging my beliefs and opening my mind with your comments and feedback.

Thank you for reading my blog.


TUCKED AWAY in our subconscious minds is an idyllic vision in which we see ourselves on a long journey that spans an entire continent. We're traveling by train and, from the windows, we drink in the passing scenes of cars on nearby highways, of children waving at crossings, of cattle grazing in distant pastures, of smoke pouring from power plants, of row upon row upon row of cotton and corn and wheat, of flatlands and valleys, of city skylines and village halls.

But uppermost in our conscious minds is our final destination--for at a certain hour and on a given day, our train will finally pull into the Station with bells ringing, flags waving, and bands playing. And once that day comes, so many wonderful dreams will come true. So restlessly, we pace the aisles and count the miles, peering ahead, waiting, waiting, waiting for the Station.

"Yes, when we reach the Station, that will be it!" we promise ourselves. "When we're eighteen. . . Win that promotion. . . Put the last kid through college. . . Buy that 450SL Mercedes-Benz. . . Have a nest egg for retirement!"

From that day on we will all live happily ever after.

Sooner or later, however, we must realize there is no Station in this life, no one earthly place to arrive at once and for all. The journey is the joy. The Station is an illusion--it constantly out distances us. Yesterday's a memory, tomorrow's a dream. Yesterday belongs to a history, tomorrow belongs to God. Yesterday's a fading sunset, tomorrow's a faint sunrise. Only today is there light enough to love and live.

So, gently close the door on yesterday and throw the key away. It isn't the burdens of today that drive men mad, but rather regret over yesterday and the fear of tomorrow. Regret and fear are twin thieves who would rob us of today.

"Relish the moment" is a good motto, especially when coupled with Psalm 118:24, "This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it."

So stop pacing the aisles and counting the miles. Instead, swim more rivers, climb more mountains, kiss more babies, count more stars. Laugh more and cry less. Go barefoot oftener. Eat more ice cream. Ride more merry-go-rounds. Watch more sunsets. Life must be lived as we go along. The Station will come soon enough.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Definitely, Maybe

...for sure.

Despite a preponderance of B and C-List actors (Ryan Reynolds, Elizabeth Banks, Isla Fisher, and Rachel Weisz), Definitely, Maybe was surprisingly good. In fact, this could be a break for Reynolds who I had previously never seen in a leading role.

It is the story of a soon-to-be divorced father, telling the story of how he met his daughter's mother. The twist is that he decides to throw in a couple past romances, changing the names and details as he sees fit, to see if his precocious daughter played convincingly by Abigail Breslin (Little Miss Sunshine), can figure out (along with the viewer) who her mother is, how they met, and ostensibly who he will ultimately end up with after the divorce.

Mrs. Roosh was thrown off track but I knew from almost the beginning who "Mom" was and with whom he ends up with, but I was pleasantly surprised by the story and it's execution.

A rewarding date night flick.

State of the Race

Media Bias Uncovered

Take a look at the picture featured along with the Strib's Ventura is saving any news for TV

So, does the Strib endorse Jesse openly too?

In the meantime, here are some of the more recent photos of our former Governor from which, one must wonder, why weren't any of these selected as a representative photo?

Saturday, July 12, 2008

And the media turns to look the other way

Pick a Color, Any Color

Very cool. Click on a color or three and Multicolr Search Lab pores over three million interesting Flickr pics and sorts them by the color(s) you select.

Friday, July 11, 2008

2009 Acura TL In the Open


Wind Specialist: Licensed in all Fifty Seven States

Anyone else catch the irony of a air-movement specialist working on an Obama campaign peice?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Will Obama Inherit Two Three Wars?

One has to wonder, given recent history, what Iran's President Ahmadinejad is thinking. Why openly threaten Israel? Why goad the US in doing so? Does he think that we are spent on Iraq? Does he expect a potential Obama presidency to be that impotent?

Meanwhile, plans to attack Iran may already be in place and the potential of an Obama presidency may be fastracking Israel's execution, inexorably drawing the US into another conflict. Which begs the question, if polls show Obama's chances of gaining the White House increasingly likely, will Israel expedite their plans? Will an Obama administration be ready to inherit two wars?

In a recent piece for the Washington Post, Israeli commentator Yossi Melman writes: “No decision to attack Iran has been made in Israel” and it is “a matter of at least one year” before any decision will be made.

Melman’s words seem enough to convince the editorial staffs of publications like the Post and the Nation. But sources inside the U.S. intelligence and Defense communities are telling us, there is an increasing “probability” that the Israeli Air Force (IAF) will soon strike Iranian nuclear facilities.

One intelligence community source tells us, “The campaign will last more than a few days, perhaps up to a week or more.” And it looks as if the operational green-light will be given at some point within the next few months before any window of opportunity closes that would prevent Iran from building a nuclear weapon

We know Ahmadinejad frequently threatens to "wipe Israel off the map,"

“The Israelis know that politically they have to do it this year, because they and we don’t know who is going to be the U.S. president next year. They also know this thing has to be done as a regime change. If they want this to be successful -- and they do -- they can’t just go in and only take out the nuke sites.”

The stakes for Israel go beyond any operational success or failure; for as IAF Col. Ziv Levy told Bob Simon in a 60 Minutes interview earlier this year, Israel cannot lose: “The first war we lose, Israel will cease to exist.”

HT Chris F

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Oh No Bama!


Its about time...

John McCain is stepping up to the plate - I think this is an effective message. What do you think?

HT Althouse

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Fool Me Once

Wild at Heart: Discovering the Secret of a Man's Soul

Wild at Heart is easily read and well-written and "invites men to recover their masculine heart".

"What is a Christian man? Without listening to what is being said, look at what you find there. Most Christian men are...bored."

Men were meant to be men, men that seek adventure, victory, risk, and beauty; that is how God designed us.

"Let people feel the weight of who you are...and let them deal with it"

"The problem with men, we are told, is that they don't know how to keep their promises, be spiritual leaders, talk to their wives, or raise their children. But if they try really hard, they can reach to lofty summit of becoming...a nice guy. That's what we hold up as models of Christian maturity: Really Nice Guys."

"(Author John) Eldridge believes this dedication to niceness is the reason there are so many tired and lonely women, so many fatherless children, and so few men around.

As C.S. Lewis said, 'We castrate the gelding and bid him be fruitful.'"

A favorite quote from the book:

"Don't ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive."

Monday, July 7, 2008

Future Weenie Car

The 2010 Toyota Prius, while still looking like a weenie car, looks to be improved somewhat for 2010, in this rendering from Car and Driver.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Are you watching this?

Federer v Nadal

Best Tennis Ever

Longest Wimbledon Final Match Ever

Chrysler Miniman to have Blindspot Monitoring System

First of all: zzz

Thankfully for Chrysler Clown & Frumpy Miniman owners, this new system does not have the ability (the blindspot system actually uses radar) the range or resolution to actually see behind the vehicle where one would otherwise observe neighbors and friends pointing and laughing.

"Hey look at the dork in the ugly Miniman!"

Just when Miniman sales have mercifully started to decline, Chrysler decides to hasten the process with the squarest (I am speaking socially and spatially) Miniman ever.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

The Politics of Change My Mind

Barack Obama is no different than any other stereotypical politician, he just wants the less informed to think so.

The "Flip Flop" accusations are already in play on the part of the McCain campaign. True as that charge may be, I wonder if it has lost it's imputation.

One thing is for sure, Obama will do or say anything to get into office, a trait that McCain, thus far has not exhibited.

You'll notice Barack Obama is now wearing a flag pin. Again. During the primary campaign, he refused to, explaining that he'd worn one after Sept. 11 but then stopped because it "became a substitute for, I think, true patriotism." So why is he back to sporting pseudo-patriotism on his chest? Need you ask? The primaries are over. While seducing the hard-core MoveOn Democrats that delivered him the caucuses -- hence, the Democratic nomination -- Obama not only disdained the pin. He disparaged it. Now that he's running in a general election against John McCain, and in dire need of the gun-and-God-clinging working-class votes he could not win against Hillary Clinton, the pin is back. His country 'tis of thee.

In last week's column, I thought I had thoroughly chronicled Obama's brazen reversals of position and abandonment of principles -- on public financing of campaigns, on NAFTA, on telecom immunity for post-Sept. 11 wiretaps, on unconditional talks with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad -- as he moved to the center for the general election campaign. I misjudged him.

He was just getting started.

Two weeks ago, I predicted that by Election Day Obama will have erased all meaningful differences with McCain on withdrawal from Iraq. I underestimated Obama's cynicism. He will make the move much sooner. He will use his upcoming Iraq trip to finally acknowledge the remarkable improvements on the ground and to formally abandon his primary season commitment to a fixed 16-month timetable for removal of all combat troops.

While this very well may end up being true, I can't imagine Obama's minions being pleased. Will this hurt Obama? Does this shift reflect his true feelings or in a twisted way his desire to actually be not write checks he won't be able to cash if elected President?

As Obama assiduously obliterates all differences with McCain on national security and social issues, he remains rightly confident that Bush fatigue, the lousy economy and his own charisma -- he is easily the most dazzling political personality since John Kennedy -- will carry him to the White House.

Sidebar: I read this to mean McCain needs Pawlenty, and fast.

Of course, once he gets there he will have to figure out what he really believes. The conventional liberal/populist stuff he campaigned on during the primaries? Or the reversals he is so artfully offering up now?

I have no idea. Do you? Does he?

HT Chris F

Friday, July 4, 2008

A Brilliant Display of Counter Terrorism

From my friend Chris F.:

"In a brilliant display of counter terrorism, Columbia counter terrorism officers infiltrated FARC and have freed the Columbian hostages making them (pro Obama people, btw) look like fools. Ronald Reagan gets elected, Iranian hostages are freed. John McCain shows up in Bogota this week, and the FARC show their true colors and hand over the hostages. Columbian President Santos is an unabashed McCain fan. Obama dissed this guy with his anti free trade talk along with the Pelosicrats. Read this and ask yourself who you want the next president to be as far as a freer and more secure western hemisphere is concerned"

U2 - City Of Blinding Lights

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Give me an "ology"...any "ology" will do.

Yesterday morning I heard a desperate plea from a scientifically- challenged bird dude (Ornithologist, I presume) who was conveying the plight of our soon to be extinct little tuxedo-wearing friends to the far North and South. The cause? Of course, as usual, the always within reach catch-all: Man-Made Global Warming/Cooling/Change.

Bird dude: The earth is cooling now. We might be killing the penguin but not by warming the planet. It's probably those plastic six-pack deals we always see pictures of around some bird's neck. I guess any "ology" will do these days. Ornithology qualifies one for Climatology.

Scientists led by Dee Boersma, a UW biology professor and penguin expert has found that, while climate change is an important factor in the decline in numbers of penguin species, loss of habitat through coastal development, pollution and depletion of fisheries are also reasons for the dramatic fall.

That's right! Just throw "climate change" in their for good measure. Hysteria is a requisite ingredient of any "news" story of late.

A reader of the WSJ writes:

"I think the global-warming delusion is definitely to be considered in any attempt at epistemology. If this kind of mass delusion can happen, it suggests that a lot of other things we think we know may be confused as well."

-- Eric Baum, responding to "Global Warming as Mass Neurosis."

Hey! Another "ology". For you etymologists, epistemology, otherwise known as the theory of knowledge...

"is a branch of philosophy concerned with the nature and scope of knowledge. The term was introduced into English by the Scottish philosopher James Frederick Ferrier (1808-1864).

Much of the debate in this field has focused on analyzing the nature of knowledge and how it relates to similar notions such as truth, belief, and justification."

It would appear that the word epistimology can be smartly introduced into any discussion of Man-Made Global Warming/Cooling/Change.

"Truth, belief and justification."

Reverse those three words and you have the chronology (another great "ology") of the MMGW movement.

Excerpts from the article, Global Warming as Mass Neurosis

Last week marked the 20th anniversary of the mass hysteria phenomenon known as global warming. Much of the science has since been discredited. Now it's time for political scientists, theologians and psychiatrists to weigh in.

What, discredited? Thousands of scientists insist otherwise, none more noisily than NASA's Jim Hansen, who first banged the gong with his June 23, 1988, congressional testimony (delivered with all the modesty of "99% confidence").

But mother nature has opinions of her own. NASA now begrudgingly confirms that the hottest year on record in the continental 48 was not 1998, as previously believed, but 1934, and that six of the 10 hottest years since 1880 antedate 1954. Data from 3,000 scientific robots in the world's oceans show there has been slight cooling in the past five years, never mind that "80% to 90% of global warming involves heating up ocean waters," according to a report by NPR's Richard Harris.

The Arctic ice cap may be thinning, but the extent of Antarctic sea ice has been expanding for years.

If even slight global cooling remains evidence of global warming, what isn't evidence of global warming? What we have here is a nonfalsifiable hypothesis, logically indistinguishable from claims for the existence of God. This doesn't mean God doesn't exist, or that global warming isn't happening. It does mean it isn't science.