Sports

My NCAA Basketball Bracket to take it all!

I just filled this out in time, submitting it 10 minutes before deadline. In my group, there are 80 people competing for $800 (half the pot goes to Haiti, the rest to the top winner). As of tonight, I’ve only lost two picks – Damn you Georgetown!!!

Politics & Government

The Top Ten Immediate Benefits You’ll Get When Health…

As soon as health care passes, the American people will see immediate benefits. The legislation will:

  • Prohibit pre-existing condition exclusions for children in all new plans;
  • Provide immediate access to insurance for uninsured Americans who are uninsured because of a pre-existing condition through a temporary high-risk pool;
  • Prohibit dropping people from coverage when they get sick in all individual plans;
  • Lower seniors prescription drug prices by beginning to close the donut hole;
  • Offer tax credits to small businesses to purchase coverage;
  • Eliminate lifetime limits and restrictive annual limits on benefits in all plans;
  • Require plans to cover an enrollee’s dependent children until age 26;
  • Require new plans to cover preventive services and immunizations without cost-sharing;
  • Ensure consumers have access to an effective internal and external appeals process to appeal new insurance plan decisions;
  • Require premium rebates to enrollees from insurers with high administrative expenditures and require public disclosure of the percent of premiums applied to overhead costs.

I’m not seeing listed is Rush Limbaugh leaving the country…. but these all benefit the country and the well being of the American people… even if it’s not the perfect bill (no such thing), get some positive out of this year long process.

Society

Leonardo da Vinci’s resume

Looking for jobs is not hard… Getting favorable responses based around bullet points of your 10 year career on a single 8×11 piece of paper is frustrating. I’ve spent months writing, rewriting, formating, tweeking and reformating my resume to get it to a state of acceptance by scanners. Then I’ve had to make sure I’m adding the appropriate frequency of action verbs and keywords. Before submission, I’m reediting my resume to tailor it to each job I’m responding to making sure my objective meets that of the position needs and I’m tailoring my cover letter to detail what I can do for my future employer.

Not hard to believe, but resumes have been around for centuries. Before he was famous, before he painted the Mona Lisa and the Last Supper, before he invented the helicopter, before he drew the most famous image of man, before he was all of these things, Leonardo da Vinci was an artificer, an armorer, a maker of things that go “boom”.

In 1482, at the age of 30, da Vinci wrote out a letter to Ludovico il Moro, Duke of Milan listing what abilities he can do in hopes of being hired by a future employer. Here’s a copy of it:

The translation::

“Most Illustrious Lord, Having now sufficiently considered the specimens of all those who proclaim themselves skilled contrivers of instruments of war, and that the invention and operation of the said instruments are nothing different from those in common use: I shall endeavor, without prejudice to any one else, to explain myself to your Excellency, showing your Lordship my secret, and then offering them to your best pleasure and approbation to work with effect at opportune moments on all those things which, in part, shall be briefly noted below.

1. I have a sort of extremely light and strong bridges, adapted to be most easily carried, and with them you may pursue, and at any time flee from the enemy; and others, secure and indestructible by fire and battle, easy and convenient to lift and place. Also methods of burning and destroying those of the enemy.
2. I know how, when a place is besieged, to take the water out of the trenches, and make endless variety of bridges, and covered ways and ladders, and other machines pertaining to such expeditions.
3. If, by reason of the height of the banks, or the strength of the place and its position, it is impossible, when besieging a place, to avail oneself of the plan of bombardment, I have methods for destroying every rock or other fortress, even if it were founded on a rock, etc.
4. Again, I have kinds of mortars; most convenient and easy to carry; and with these I can fling small stones almost resembling a storm; and with the smoke of these cause great terror to the enemy, to his great detriment and confusion.
5. And if the fight should be at sea I have kinds of many machines most efficient for offense and defense; and vessels which will resist the attack of the largest guns and powder and fumes.
6. I have means by secret and tortuous mines and ways, made without noise, to reach a designated spot, even if it were needed to pass under a trench or a river.
7. I will make covered chariots, safe and unattackable, which, entering among the enemy with their artillery, there is no body of men so great but they would break them. And behind these, infantry could follow quite unhurt and without any hindrance.
8. In case of need I will make big guns, mortars, and light ordnance of fine and useful forms, out of the common type.
9. Where the operation of bombardment might fail, I would contrive catapults, mangonels, trabocchi, and other machines of marvelous efficacy and not in common use. And in short, according to the variety of cases, I can contrive various and endless means of offense and defense.
10. In times of peace I believe I can give perfect satisfaction and to the equal of any other in architecture and the composition of buildings public and private; and in guiding water from one place to another.
11. I can carry out sculpture in marble, bronze, or clay, and also I can do in painting whatever may be done, as well as any other, be he who he may.

Again, the bronze horse may be taken in hand, which is to be to the immortal glory and eternal honor of the prince your father of happy memory, and of the illustrious house of Sforza.

And if any of the above-named things seem to anyone to be impossible or not feasible, I am most ready to make the experiment in your park, or in whatever place may please your Excellency – to whom I comment myself with the utmost humility, etc.”

Now I didn’t paint the altarpiece for the Chapel of St Bernard or work for Andrea di Cione’s studio, however, my skills are quite proficient and I fully intend to be working by April 1st.

Big Daddy Kane – I Get the Job Done

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Society

Happy Valentines

365Project: Can you Love my Face?

Martina Topley-Bird – Valentine

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Food

A Salt and Battery

In response to the Health Department’s new salt reduction initiative, the Times ordered some food from local restaurants and sent it off to a Long Island lab for sodium testing. What they found may not shock you: A Double ShackBurger, fries and a peanut butter shake from Shake Shack contain 1,980 milligrams of sodium. Two slices of Cajun bacon-cheeseburger pizza from Two Boots clock in at 2,240 milligrams. But the saltiest of them all is the corned beef sandwich from Katz’s Deli, which contains 4,490 milligrams of sodium. Considering that the FDA recommends a maximum of 2,400 milligrams of sodium per day, “having what she’s having” might just leave you with hypertension.

Photography

Icicles – It was a Good Day

The largest man-made icicle was 36’4.5″ (11.1 m) long and weighed 26 tons. These were only ~6″ and located about 3 meters from the sidewalk which made this shot very difficult. There’s something so dynamic about an icicle forged by transitioning a compounds matter between two states as a result of cold, then heat and cold again. Clear, sharp, frozen solid in motion, yet fragile and temporary in nature. I took maybe 30 shots and just couldn’t get the angle or focus right. Here’s a few pics I took near Kee’s Chocolates in SOHO:

365Project

Ice Cube – ‘It Was A Good Day’

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Politics & Government

Robin Hood is a Socialist

Ah wonderful… The wingnuts have found another characterchure to link Obama with and this time an Englishman. Only I don’t know if they fully understand (again) the implications of the link.

Robin Hood, as the legend goes, robbed from the filthy rich and gave to the poor which was generally thought to be a good thing for all the “working” man and “black collar” people out there (riff on blacksmith? no?). Robin Hood was the Hero of the day!

The Tea party peeps have seen through this scam, and they don’t want any of that dirty rich people money (that they paid for through taxes). Right my fellow Englishman! Check out the new campaign Bill Nighy appears in for the English Robin Hood Tax.

Yeah it will never work right? The elitist minority of the Rothschilds, Morgans and Rockerfellers will fund the masses to block it. More socialism….

Even if the banks were to pump £100 billion back into the economy it would wipe out the national debt, fund every major service and ultimately lead to a reduction in the need to tax the citizens. Of course if the citizens have more expendable income in their pockets, they may pay off their debt quicker, get liquid faster, and would have no need for credit cards or loans. That might just fuck over the Banking industry that much more!

Fuck, I just circled my own argument. Ah well, life in debt servitude is just much safer… At least then I have a master to report to daily…

Check out this band of “Merry Men” cleaning the sidewalks in Bryant Park and giving back to the citizens of New York City. City Parks workers paid by the tax dollars of the citizens who live and visit here.

365Project

The Revenge – “Forever In Their Debt”

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Photography

Purple Rain

I’d say there’s less than .5% of NY residents that could afford a multi-head shower room but should I ever become one wealthy enough to throw money at this idea, I’d disco the hell out of it with RainSky waterfalls, 270 degree mirrors (you need the LED shower doors to remember which direction to exit) and LED changing shower heads (complete with remote, so the voyeur can change the mood for the shower participants at will). Showering partner is on your own.

365Project

Prince: Purple Rain (Steve Clisby & Chew Fu Cover)

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Science & Nature

A powdery snow blankets the “Merchant Princes” of NYC

Out come the Timberlands. It’s the first snow day in NY. Leaving early in the morning, I took a tour around the Village, Time Square and Bryant Park in the snow. It’s supposed to drop over a foot and that seems to be an underestimate. I haven’t seen snow like this in the city ever and can only imagine powder that’s dropping in the mountains upstate and in Vermont. If there ever were a time I’d want to board on the east coast, now would be it.

I took this shot in Bryant Park of the Reading Library. At the head of the library is a statue of William Earle Dodge considered at one time to be a Merchant Prince of Wall Street. William was a noted abolitionist, Native American rights activist, congressman, founding member of the YMCA, mining baron. A considerable resume for a NY Republican of the times; despite his Civil War profiteering (southerners labeled him a carpetbagger) but deserving of the bronze in the park honoring his support of the Native Americans, lobbying for the prosecution of the U.S. cavalry commanders who massacred Blackfeet Indians in Montana and campaigning for the creation of what would be come the Department of Interior.

365Project

Crookers – Remedy (Feat. Miike Snow)

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Society

Sun nien fai lok

photo365_2010_040

It’s the year of the tiger and 2010 will be an excellent year… Get out your 99 Red Balloons and have a living room dance party

Nena – 99 Luftballons

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