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Friday, October 11, 2013

Back to Posting

Hi, all. Sorry for not posting for a while. I guess a let this blog slip for a while, but I'm officially getting back into it. Stay tuned for more cool miscellany. For instance, I'm very interested in graphic design, and while shopping at Target a few months ago I came across some very cool-looking cans. I'd love to have images like these framed on my wall!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

An Amazing Great Dane

About two weeks ago, near my Brooklyn neighborhood, my fiance showed me something wonderful.  Someone who was exercising in a local gym had left an enormous Great Dane in the car parked outside, and the dog had raised its head out of the car's sunroof to peer around and, I assume, feel the cool night breezes.  It was one of the greatest sights I have seen for months, and I was literally jumping up and down with joy. See pictures below.

Monday, April 23, 2012

I first heard about the legendary Blackwing pencil a few months ago.  I noticed a stupendous Blackwing gift box being sold on the Levenger website; I regularly came upon websites and postings and blogs that indicated a cult-like following of this soft-leaded wonder.  For instance, witness this site, which quotes John Steinbeck and notes that after the pencil was discontinued in 1998, individual Blackwings began selling for $40.00 on eBay.  Wow.  Now, I found this posting on the New Yorker's website about how Blackwings fit into the history of that magazine.  Very interesting, and very cool.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

The Finger Lakes and Ancient Greece

I am now in Ithaca, New York: I have a very cool meeting with a very cool person tomorrow.  (I can't reveal too much here.)  On the drive up here, though, I was struck by an interesting phenomenon: many towns in upstate New York have names derived from ancient Greece and Rome.  Aside form "Ithaca" -- the name of Odysseus's native town -- this part of the country is home to Marathon, Syracuse, Homer, Virgil, and Etna.  Was this naming theme coordinated by someone?  What is the history behind this trend?  Does anyone know?

Saturday, February 25, 2012

It's Cornbread Time!

Lately, I have been learning how to cook.  I am finding that I am actually enjoying it: it's something new to learn; it's creative; it helps me maintain my weight and my health; and it saves money.  My go-to cookbook right now is Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything.  It has just what I want: simple, easy recipes that can get me familiar with the kitchen.

The dish I have been making often these past few weeks is cornbread.  It's easy, and it tastes great.  Below are some photos that I took of my last cornbread effort.  Not bad, if I do say so myself!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

How to Think and Reason Properly

When I was in college, I majored in philosophy, and ever since then I have been intensely interested in all things philosophical: metaphysics, ethics, epistemology, aesthetics, and logic.  I am so in love with the subject that even when I was studying for my master's degree in science writing at the University of Southern California, I made time to take a philosophy class on continental rationalism.  (We read Leibniz, Spinoza, and Descartes, as well as an assortment of lesser-known thinkers.)  On my Twitter feed, I follow a philosophy account, and I have downloaded several podcasts of Philosophy Talk, a radio show hosted by two Stanford professors and broadcast on 91.7 FM in California.  Something about the subject tickles my brain, and I just can't get enough.

So I was overjoyed to come across a series of animations produced by Bridge 8, a company in Australia.  The animations explain what an argument is, what logical thinking is, and how to think clearly.  (Reasoning and argumentation are at the heart of philosophy, as is the question of how to reason and argue properly.  Look here to see what I mean.)  I have included some of the videos below.  They're short, so take some time to browse through them.  You won't be disappointed.

Monday, February 6, 2012

James Gurney and the Art of Dinosaurs

I never read Dinotopia as a kid: I only came to it in high school and college.  But, the experience has stayed with me in a very profound way.  I suppose lots of boys like dinosaurs, and especially drawing them, but that love of the fantastical and the well-drawn never left me.  As I flipped through the pages of James Gurney's amazing story, I almost couldn't believe what I was seeing.  Gurney not only drew some of the best illustrations of dinosaurs I have ever seen.  He also took the time to create a written dinosaur language, in which footprints are the basis of an alphabet.  He envisioned innovative ways in which dinosaurs and humans might live together, and drew those collaborations in convincing, realistic detail.  To me, he was like Norman Rockwell, but instead of drawing a family gathered at a Thanksgiving table, he drew mosasaurs pulling rudimentary submarines.

Now, some of his work in on view in the Woodson Art Museum, in Wausau, Wisconsin.  Anyone who has a chance to see this show absolutely should.  I wish I could go.