Stuff from October, 2009

This is the archive of tumbledry happenings that occurred on October, 2009.


Fashion photography by Dave Yoder. Behind the Scenes: On and Off the Catwalk - Lens Blog - NYTimes.com:

Mr. Yoder’s initiation to his new subject was unceremonious. He showed up with a few cameras, and, standing in the middle of the fray backstage at his first show, suddenly realized he was in a room full of mostly naked women. He panicked, thinking that he was in a lot of trouble.


Yiddish words

Wikipedia has a List of English words of Yiddish origin. Quite useful, as these words are use far more often than you’d think. I think I’ll adopt nosh, a noun or verb meaning “snack”.


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The Dumbest Generation

The Dumbest Generation: How the Digital Age Stupefies Young Americans and Jeopardizes Our Future… I wish I had time to read this book (oh, the irony) by Emory University English professor Mark Bauerlein. Reviewer David Pitt summarizes the central thesis of Bauerlein’s book (emphasis mine):


Melody Instrument

I really want to sit down in front of a concert grand piano and play the melodies in my head. The only public piano I’ve found near Moos tower is in the hospital — its action is hopeless, and it’s stunningly out of tune. The practice rooms at the U are extremely well equipped… but essentially unavailable to non-music majors (and cost money to get time in, anyhow). There are a few slightly decrepit pianos in Coffman Union… but I just feel like a jackass playing in that type of airport terminal setting — just feels all sorts of wrong.


Bad lab days

You know it’s a bad day in lab when you go backwards. That is, when you leave, you actually have more to do than you did when you arrived. Wouldn’t it be better not to show up at all? I wish there was some sort of warning system with red flashing lights: CAUTION — YOUR HAND SKILLS ARE LOOKING SUCKY TODAY. AVOID DOING ANYTHING DIFFICULT.

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Teacher jobs

Nice to put some numbers to that which I am always complaining about. Paul Krugman, in “The Uneducated American”, about the United State’s continued trashing of the educational system:

Of those lost jobs, 29,000 were in state and local education, bringing the total losses in that category over the past five months to 143,000. That may not sound like much, but education is one of those areas that should, and normally does, keep growing even during a recession. Markets may be troubled, but that’s no reason to stop teaching our children. Yet that’s exactly what we’re doing.



And THAT was the best nap with my new wife Mykala ever. Best. Couch nap. Ever. George slept on my left leg, for added warmth and general cozy-ness.

While an awesomely amazing nap, I do think we might brew a pot of coffee to prevent such a thing next Sunday. Gotta make the most of our weekends together.


Minneapolis - Wikipedia:

Availability of Wi-Fi, transportation solutions, medical trials, university research and development expenditures, advanced degrees held by the work force, and energy conservation are so far above the national average that in 2005, Popular Science named Minneapolis the “Top Tech City” in the U.S. The Twin Cities ranked the country’s second best city in a 2006 Kiplinger’s poll of Smart Places to Live and Minneapolis was one of the Seven Cool Cities for young professionals.


Elbe Philharmonic Hall

If you’re in Germany, in Hamburg specifically, then you should check out an amazing concert hall rising above the port; it will house the Elbphilhamonie Hamburg in 2012. Called the Elbe Philharmonic Hall, the building appears to float atop an old structure from 1963 called Warehouse A.


Fish on the humanities

I enjoyed reading Stanley Fish’s argument against attempts to justify studies of the humanities. Fish respectfully points to Anthony Kronman’s idealistic viewpoint that the humanities teach people compassion and give them examples of the different paths a life can take. He acknowledges that this argument makes sense, but ultimately seems to think it’s dishonest. Which is to say: can you stand up in front of a bunch of people and say the humanities make better people when the professors who study them everyday are clearly no better as people than the rest of us? Similarly, a “careerism” argument for the humanities is just as flimsy as it is depressing.


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10 Day

Every day, for the next 10 days, there is a chance of rain. Average chance of rain: about 40%. Man oh man, if it keeps up like this, we’ll have feet of snow on the ground by Christmas. This is a good thing.


Louis C.K.: “Is the speed of light too slow for you?”

The Best Dinner

This is a picture of the best dinner I ever had, this past September 19th. Mykala made spectacular foods: fresh bread topped with bruschetta made from tomatoes plucked off our tomato plant no more than 10 minutes before we ate, roasted farmer’s market beets and goat cheese salad (stuuupendous), and a lovely (sweet) wine. Dessert was out and about: ice cream in the warm late summer evening. Perfect.

Gotan Project

Gotan Project - Santa Maria (Del Buen Ayre). Tango with an attitude.


When I look back at what I wrote when I got into dental school, I now realize, quite plainly, I had no idea what the hell I was getting myself into. No. Idea. Reminds me of some of the letters from Confederate soldiers when they were going off to war — they had this romantic idea of what war would be like… and they were (1) completely mistaken and (2) grossly unprepared.


Great Taxes

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Tax Returns, published at The American Scholar:

And though we have saved nothing, we have danced the carmagnole…

I suppose that’s one way to look at it.

McFerrin - Drive

A bit more from Bobby McFerrin’s Live in Montreal combo teaching/performance show: Bobby McFerrin - Drive.

Holy. Crap.

If you’re short on time, video gets CRAZY AMAZING at 1:55 (preferably with some headphones, to hear the incredible range).