Friday, September 30, 2005

Red Sox 5, Yankees 3

One down....

New England Weekend

Great weather for New England this weekend. Thank you! Thank you!

The Yankees are in town for the Red Sox.
The Earthquakes are in town for the Revolution.
The Chargers are in town for the Patriots.

If you are not a sports fan, the weather will be good for walking somewhere outside.

Quotes & Links

From Doug Lennick & Fred Kiel blogging at 800-CEO-READ Blog comes this gem on moral intelligence:

... Moral Intelligence is knowing right from wrong. Moral Competence is doing what's right. Unfortunately, because of the fallibility of human nature, it is highly likely most of us have been both morally intelligent and morally incompetent at the same time. What's vital for sustainable organizational and personal success, however, is a directional commitment to our moral principles, what we call our moral compass.

From Laura at The BabyNameWizzard Blog, she has an analysis of Red vs. Blue names for boys and girls:
The strength of tradition seems to be biggest theme dividing red and blue names. Red staters are more prone to neologize--to create new names from surnames (Tanner), place names (Brooklyn), or simply appealing sounds (Kaden). Blue staters are more likely to stick to traditional naming stock. Even when they seek fresh territory, it's among traditional first names: antiques (Ava) or foreign imports (Gianna). In other words, the political conservatives turn out to be the naming activists, and the political progressives are the naming conservatives.

From Evelyn Rodriguez at Crossroads Dispatches comes her analysis of DIO:
But doing it yourself is only scratching the surface. My dependence of others after my near-bankruptcy and after the tsunami reinforced how interdependent we truly are, and that was an unexpected blessing. In the midst of chaos, compassion reigned. One of the lessons that stuck for me in the tsunami was this amazing idea of we're in this together, and we're working together.

So I'm just as interested in DIO - doing it ourselves. Not going it entirely solo.

From Dave Pollard at How to Save the World

While I was reading the magazine (in the airport terminal) I was drinking a Starbucks chai latte. I noticed it had these curious words on the side of a cup (good reading material in airports is hard to find):

The Way I See It #23

chances are you

are scared of fictions --

chances are you

are only fleetingly happy --

chances are you

know much less than you think you do --

chances are you

feel a little guilty --

chances are you

want people to lie to you --

perhaps the answer lies on the side of a coffee cup:

you are lost

(by writer-comedian David Cross)

Enough catching up for tonight. Enjoy!

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Vaugh - No?

What's this with Alias?

All the women in my house are distraught with the season opener.

How could they do that? to them? much less to me?

Oh right, advertising dollars... should have known...

Why did I ask...

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Talking Story Headline

Yes, a shameless self promotion alert for this one.

I am honored to be a guest author at Rosa Say's Talking Story today.

I took the opportunity to add my two cents on her theme this month of Life Long Learning.

Read it. Let me know what you think!

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Passion Alert - 100 Bloggers

There is a new blog in the neighborhood and it is bound to show (if not build) some passion.

100 Bloggers has been resurrected (was it ever dead?).

In any case, it is coming alive!

Add it to your blogroll to read along, or better yet
accept the invite and join the group!

PS - yes, I am part of the group and will post there.

Ruby's Shoes

From Lori McKenna's Paperwings and Halos album.

Ruby's Shoes
Ruby's shoes would take her,
A mile or so to school everyday.
Where the white people hated her,
They'd scream and hold signs to tell her to go away.

But Ruby's will was stronger
Than the bigots with the signs could ever know.
She stopped everyday at the corner
And prayed that the pain would go away.

She stop and she'd pray that all the hatred would go away.
Walk a mile in Ruby's shoes.
She was only six years old but she knew.
Walk a mile in Ruby's shoes.

Ruby sat alone in the classroom.
She never dreamed the other children wouldn't come.
They hated her for the color of her skin,
Well, color is such an amazing illusion.


Now, Ruby knew about Dorothy.
And the ruby shoes that she wore.
She wondered about OZ sometimes
Well no other child had walked her shoes before.


Ruby if birds can always fly, why oh why can't you and I
Ruby's shoes would take her, a mile or so to school everyday.
Where the white people hated her,
They'd scream and hold signs to tell her to go away.

She'd stop and she'd pray that the pain would go away.
She'd stop and she'd pray that no other children would be raised this way.
Walk a mile in Ruby's shoes.

Lori McKenna's Turn

I happened to catch Lori McKenna at the Circle of Friend's Coffeehouse in March of 2001 when she opened for Kevin So.

She has a wonderful voice and at that time was writing some great songs. She has continued to do so. Working and building a following of those who really appreciate her goodness.

Step forward a few years. Some one heard her and shared her songs with Faith Hill. Now Faith has released a new album where she sings three of Lori's songs; “Fireflies”, “If You Ask”, and “Stealing Kisses”. Oprah has scheduled Faith and Lori for an upcoming show. Lori's album "Bittertown" is being re-released by Warner Brother Records (Faith's record company).

Lori is trying to keep it all in perspective. She is humble about her family life (5 kids and husband) singing and writing about life.

You'll hear more of Lori. She is good.

I am happy that her time has arrived. I trust it will last awhile.

FYI - some of this information came from Scott Alarik's article in the Boston Globe today. (free registration required)

Thursday, September 22, 2005

We the bloggers...

Check out this statement made to Congress on behalf of the bloggers by Bloglines:

We the Bloggers...

Blogs have given individuals of any and every background the ability to freely speak their minds and share information with anyone who chooses to read it, at any time they wish to do so. Bloglines was created for people as a window to access this world of dynamic content and a way to participate in its creation. We believe blogs have helped enable an open exchange of information that has never before been possible. As some of you may have heard, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) is reviewing its regulations concerning political speech on the Internet, including blog activity. Bloglines is committed to the continuation of open exchanges of information and opinions throughout the blogosphere and the Internet in general. Today, the Committee on House Administration is having a hearing on this issue. In the spirit of these beliefs, I have provided the Committee with the following statement. We encourage you to express your opinion on this matter in any forum you choose.

-Mark Fletcher and the Bloglines team

Read the full statement here:

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Distracted tonight

Watching the NE Revolution play the Columbus Crew tonight. Frustrating. The ref must be watching another game.

Updated: The Revolution scored in added time to escape with a tie, 1-1.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

A day late - Arrgh!

Two days late due to problems with this posting.... arrgh!
My pirate name is:
Mad Sam Kidd

Every pirate is a little bit crazy. You, though, are more than just a little bit. Even though you're not always the traditional swaggering gallant, your steadiness and planning make you a fine, reliable pirate. Arr!
Get your own pirate name from

Monday, September 19, 2005

Blogversary - Part 2

Yes, now that I am a one year old blogger I look forward to the day when I can truly spend the day just blogging, I won't have to worry about:

1 - going to the bathroom (diapers got me covered)
2 - some nice woman will cuddle me in their lap (yes, Dolores, that means you!)
3 - making some funny noises with whatever part of my body is handy (Oh, look how cute!)

Will I have learned to read by then? Probably not.

Could I type? No, probably won't even be able to talk!

Oww! Then this will all fall apart.

The more I think about it, I don't want to be one year old!

Diapers won't be an advantage to keep going. Someone still needs to change them!

Hey, you what are you doing! I need changing!
No wonder kids are noisy at that age. All they can do is attract attention.

Breast feeding won't sustain the craving the body needs for energy food.
More noise... more attracting attention...
Gee, what does it take to get noticed? I post more than once a day.
I have commented on most the A list blogs. Should I take a picture for HNT?
Should I jump in the mud with the rest, slinging sex with the best of them?

No, there is no need for noise or nonsense, there is enough in the world today.
What we do need is common sense and mindfullness.

I am usually not shy about commenting on something but I have learned to consider my thoughts before speaking.

Kirk Weisler writes: Our example to our children, to our families, and to the world around us is constant. The question is not whether or not anyone is watching, the question is what are they learning as they watch.

This was made very clear to me early on with my first daughter. Allison and I were at the kitchen table for milk and cookies; Oreos, of course. I like to eat them whole. Yes, my mouth is big enough to do so. But when she tried to pop a whole one into her little mouth, I decided to introduce her to the art of playing with the Oreo.

Jane Genova writes: If we define the human touch as that primitive need by humans for a connection through the context of a story (Daddy, tell me a story), then we can't help but conclude that blogging has a lot of runway as the medium for our times.

Sins of omission on this front are quickly obvious. The blogger who spews opinions or facts without the wraparound narrative. Or the blogger who spews narrative about her life without providing information we can use.

So I'll start with my 2 cents. If I can't add value to the conversation, I'll hold my tongue.

Sidebar story: I got an email from a NY Times reporter on Friday night. She had seen a comment of mine on another blog. She wanted my thoughts about an article she was working on a deadline for and if I had sometime this weekend she would appreciate it. We did connect and have a good conversation. Later I went back to find the comment and posting that triggered the conversation and when I did, I realized that she had wrongly attributed the comment she quoted to me. In the spirit of full disclosure, I sent her an email to let her know. The error did not change our conversation on Saturday, just that otherwise, it might not have happened at all.

Kirsten Johnson writes: what i am noticing about this process most recently is that sometimes as we are working our way through the questions, new ideas only come once the old ones have been completely worked through. it's as if there is only so much space in our brain in which thoughts and ideas can take seed. as we let go of the old ideas, which life has proved to be unworkable, new questions and ideas can move into the available space we've just created.

Just think, of all the posts I have written in the past year, of all the comments I have made on the various blogs I have found (and been so inspired to do so), they were like the bread crumbs Hansel and Gretel left in the forest; quickly eaten up leaving no trace behind. But they are ideas, and not bread crumbs. So the ideas have left me. They are now out on their own in this wild wonderful and wacky world. Which means new ideas can come to take their place!

Halleluia! Being a one year old may indeed be fun!
Oh, what shall I think of next? What will I do next?

You'll have to pay attention. But you can use the new service to receive an email when I post. Check out the link on the sidebar for more information.

You can ante up a comment or an email and we'll take it from there.

Kirk Weisler - T4D

Kirk Weisler publishes the Thought for the Day (T4D) via email and invites one to blog with him, except he does not post other than about every other month. I won't hold that against him. :-) His T4D is a daily gem.

I re-print his posting today in its entirety. You can sign up for his T4D on his web site.

"Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many."
- Unknown

Happy Birthday !!
Today my wonderful wife, Becky, turns a whopping 33 years old!!
WOW, she's really getting up there!! : )

Becky has always advocated the philosophy that you don't get a year older, but a year better. Truly she does get better and better with each passing day, month and year.

I remember thinking when I married her that she was incredible and wonderful and that I wouldn't want to change anything about her. I have even teasingly accused her time and again of being a “Mary Poppins” Mom…and of being “practically perfect” in every way.

Fortunately the idea of her not needing to change anything was my idea and not hers. Not changing would be very boring for her, in fact, if Becky had chosen not to change, grow and become she wouldn’t have been happy, and if she wasn’t happy then she wouldn’t be Becky.

To live in a world where she wouldn't change, and grow and become even more than she was the day before…would be to live in a prison. I am sure that most of know people who have made the choice not to change or to grow and have imprisoned themselves in lives of mediocrity, sameness and stagnation. Their lives seem to be devoid of any real joy, light or positive energy. Genuine humor and laughter have been replaced with cynicism, sarcasm and dark crass humor that is filled with innuendo or a spirit of fatalism. There is an extremely popular PC game called “Half-Life, and it seems that many of our population are tragically choosing to play their own version of this game living lives far below what is available to them.

Since our marriage 14 years ago Becky has changed, and many of those changes have been fairly significant. To see her grow and to respond to her example of growth is one of the greatest inspirations of my life. I am constantly amazed at her seemingly tireless efforts to improve herself as a mother, a wife, a citizen and a saint. One of the many fruits of such growth is energy. Responding to her energy and enthusiasm invites my own growth and development, and increases my energy as a result. It is a wonderful cycle that continues to lift our lives and bring joy and positive energy into our family.

For her Birthday Becky’s biggest desire was for books. Books primarily on parenting and raising families with a few requests for Biographies and books related to our religious faith. I’ll include her list at the close of this T4D. Picture with me if you will me having the kids helping me to wrap all of these books for their Mom… You can guess that I was really making sure that they noticed how much their Mother loved learning and reading. We talked the whole time we wrapped those books about the example that she is to our whole family of developing a love for life long learning and living in a state of becoming. It was great fun to give Mom her books and to see Becky get excited about each one, and as a parent it was especially exciting to see how closely each of the kids watched her excitement for learning and for life.

Our example to our children, to our families, and to the world around us is constant. The question is not whether or not anyone is watching, the question is what are they learning as they watch. The question is not whether or not we are getting a year older, but are we getting a year better. The question is not why do I feel so tired, depressed, lousy or angry…but what can I do to feel more energy, engagement, enthusiasm, passion and joy? There are many answers to this last question….but let me mention just three.

Get Going Again by Getting Growing Again!!
Serve Someone Today without thought of reward or recognition…do it anonymously
Express Appreciation or Gratitude to a co-worker or family member. Be Specific, Be Genuine…perhaps you might write a note and leave it on their keyboard.

I read an article the other day that said that the waves from the Tsunami actually rippled completely around the cape of South Africa, the South Pole and came up into the Atlantic ocean and were measurable all the way to the shores of Greenland! I believe our lives and the choices we make each and every moment of the day create such ripples whose effect and impact literally travels around the world. We don’t, however, have to leave a path of destruction in our wake.

Instead of living below our potential or living a “half-life”, we can choose like Becky to live life fully, to learn constantly, and to love completely each step of growth on our life’s journey. This is her legacy…this is her life, and the effect it is having on the world around her is only partially visible to the conscious eye of the beholder. But instinct, experience, intuition, and common sense tell me that the ripples of her example, like our own, are endless and infinite.

Happy Birthday Becky…thank you for your life, your love and your leadership in our home and in our world.

Love Dad, Brittany, Jacob, Joshua, and Brooklyn Joy

ps Becky’s Book List
1. 10 Secrets Wise Parents Know Brent L. Top & Bruce A. Chadwick
2. The Peacegiver James L. Ferrell
3. The Book of Nurturing – Nine Natural Laws for Enriching Your Family Life by Linda & Richard Eyre
4. Christlike Parenting by Dr. Glenn I. Latham
5. 6 Events by Stephen Covey
6. The Bruce R. McConkie Story by Joseph Fielding McConkie
7. America’s Hope –Why Every Other Civilization Has Failed and What You Can Do to Save This One by Douglas E. Brinley
8. The Revised and Enhanced History of Joseph Smith By His Mother by Scot Facer Proctor

Make it a great day, it's your choice!

Kirk Out (Hey Blog with Me)

Quotes & Links

From Laura Wattenburg at the Baby Name Wizard
The most interesting aspect of this, to me, is the cultural transmission of these differences. We hear so much about the homogenization of culture, and we tend to ascribe great power to mass media. But there’s no media voice behind the Logan-Nicholas divide, nor any clear racial, religious or class distinction. By and large, Logan and Nicholas aren't names chosen as social signifiers. Parents choose the names because they "just like the sound," but that attraction is shaped by cultural forces we may barely recognize. So naming regions are more cultural than geographic: North Dakota and West Virginia may be far apart on the globe, but they're neighbors on the naming map.

From Kathy Sierra at Creating Passionate Users

One of the most fascinating things I saw last week at the Parelli conference was a demonstration of taking three different extremely nervous (what they refer to as "right brain") horses--fearful, pacing, tense--and bring them to a relaxed state. What I expected was what we're all taught to do (or do instinctively with both pets and people)... a process of trying to be as calm and reassuring as possible. After all, becoming excitable ourselves can't possibly do anything but add more fuel... right?

But what I saw was just the opposite.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Happy Blogversary to Me!

Happy Blogversary to Me!
Happy Blogversary to Me!

Yes, you can join in the sing along. I don't carry a tune very well but will do my best to hum along with you.

I find it really hard to believe that a full year has gone by. The first posting here was followed by quite a few more as I cruised around the blogosphere, reading, exploring, learning and writing.

So what have I learned this year?

Blogger is good and free.
It doesn't do categories but that provided me an opportunity to expand to write multiple blogs.

I write on my work passion, creating a good customer experience at Passion for the Good Customer Experience.

I write on running and coaching for athletic (and life) performance improvements at Passionate Runner.

I write on discoveries in the blogosphere at The Hitchhikers Guide to the Blogosphere, a joint venture with my hitchhiker buddy, Troy Worman.

I write on team work and synergy at the newest venture with some great team mates from around the blogosphere The Blog Synergy. I am very pleased to join my partners in this venture: Troy Worman, Rosa Say, Felix Gerena, and Trevor Gay.

And I write on everything else here.

Blogger has been slow with improvements. It finally added comment validation to avoid comment spam. I added Halosan early on to manage comments and my trackbacks. Blogger what are you going to do about trackbacks? Why does your posting tool behave so differently in Internet Explorer and Firefox?

I use Bloglines as my primary RSS reader although I like the RSS Reader better it does not work within the firewall at work. While I restrict my blogging time to off work hours, I do like to do some cruising during lunch, when I happen to be stuck at the desk.

I still have not figured out how I should best spend my time blogging. I do manage to obtain about 2 hours a day during the business week for this effort. Prioritization of my time is always a challenge. I started by building my blogroll and then reading, commenting, and writing within that realm only. But I kept following links that took me outside this realm to other equally interesting places. What fell aside to enable this? Commenting. I did a lot of reading but very little commenting.

One reason why is very few blogs are enabled for an RSS feed on their comments. I would leave my two cents here and there and try to remember to go back and see what if anything developed from my comment but I would loose track of what I said and where I said it. If any one has a solution for this, please let me know. I have not found one yet.

My explorations were worth sharing so I started posting those. A side conversation developed along with way with Troy and we went into the Hitchhikers Guide with this common interest, to share our discoveries with others. Even there, keeping track of what we have discovered takes time. While we jointly have over 150 postings to date, I find myself spending time checking to see if a discovery has indeed been posted about or not. Fortunately, we have mostly managed to avoid duplication. Trivia question: what one blog what hitchhiked twice? (The winner will receive the intense self satisfaction of being correct and this will be reinforced by a special posting to announce this factoid. Actually, I know of only one. In case of multiple winners, the prize will apply to all.)

The blogosphere is full of good writers and bad writers. The blogosphere is also full of spammers. So it takes time to shift through it all to find the gems. But the gems are worth it. Who are the gems? In addition to my Blogroll, you can review my Quotes & Links posts to find them.

Why do I do Quotes & Links? Well, much of what is written on blogs is a re-write of something else. Everyone wants to have their say. I respect that but understand that not everyone (like myself) wants to read that. I find too many people spending hundreds of words droning on and on about this or that nitpicky thing. I'm sorry I don't have that much time. And I figure, if I can not add some value to the discussion, the original will do. So maybe I minimize my value by saying it is "my two cents". Maybe, but it is a catch phrase. One, I have found myself saying frequently through out my life, hence being myself, I write what I am comfortable with. Besides, I know there are good writers out there, some way better than I, and they deserve the recognition for their craft. The recognition in my Quotes & Links is deliberate.

While the Cluetrain Manifesto's point is that all markets are conversations, I have found only a few real conversations in the blogosphere. There are clearly some "within the circle" conversations. Within the circle, that is, a somewhat defined group of people who over time link and comment amongst each other's blogs. How much they venture outside their circle is hard to say? How many conversations are there outside of these "circles"? The Blog Synergy will be one attempt to find out. Can this new group come together on this topic and generate a real conversation with others? Check us out and help us answer the question.

I learned that there are a great deal of helpful people out there. Many are free to share information and links. There is nothing like a companion along the road! The road trials and troubles become less so with good company. Thanks to all of you who have helped along the way. Whether you are an old friend or a new friend, it matters that you are a friend!

This has meandered enough for now. I'll pick up the thread on some of the blogging tools and technique items later and continue to expand on the year's learnings in Part 2. Stay tuned!

Quotes & Links

From Jeneane Seesum at Allied comes this recap from her day helping the Red Cross:
Little Kenya is on dialysis, and she had just come off, so she had been throwing up. But with a bottle of pedialite in her hand, she was ready to rumble. I had fun chasing her around the place, picking up crayons, and after about two hours I sang her a song while she fell asleep on my shoulder.

I can't really put words around that. Something about touch. Something about softness and vulnerability and the gift of a child's small arms, and who is holding whom, raspy voice humming along with my words, trusting me enough to let sleep come. Wshew.

Read her full recap here.

From Mir at Woulda Coulda Shoulda comes this priceless humor

Chairman Kaga: In my many years in Kitchen Stadium, blah blah blah blah.... *Kaga drones on while the audience falls asleep* Hey! Wake up! I'm about to unveil the secret ingredient! *audience cheers* Today, a match that shall prove exciting beyond any other we've ever had here! Even though I say that every week! Yes, today... behold... the PEANUT BATTLE!

*Dry ice smoke wafts across Kitchen Stadium as a table covered in cans of peanuts is raised into the arena. Gasps are heard throughout the audience. Eater Allergist nods sagely, in anticipation. Iron Eater Pop-Tart wipes his nose on his shirt.*

Chairman Kaga: The battle will last for 4 hours, or until one of you is overwhelmed by symptoms. Choose your plan of action carefully, and may the BEST. EATER. TRIUMPH!

*wild applause*

*A small thud is heard from the balcony. Pay no attention! It's just Iron Eater Pop-Tart's mother having a small aneurysm. Carry on!*

Yep. Tomorrow morning is Monkey's food challenge. PEANUT BATTLE! I may be a tad nervous. Picturing my child in a tall paper hat while we cooperate with his doctor to poison him alleviates my nerves only a little.

Read the full "Iron Monkey" episode here and stay tuned for the sequel!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Quotes & Links

From Michelle Miller at WonderBranding: Marketing to Women comes this good advice:

Bold moves require a Lewis-and-Clark spirit - a dream, a belief and a plan to get you there. How you fit all three into your vision for the future will be the difference between a simple boat trip and an exploration that will change the view of the world forever.

Read her full posting here.

Bonus link: If you have not seen her video, please do yourself a favor and check it out!

From Lisa Haneburg at the Third Age Blog

... is it important to notice your Tipping Points? I think it is. If you want to build upon positive change and keep it moving forward, I think you need to see what’s happening.

It is powerful to put lots of small, directionally correct changes into play and see what happens. There is a bit of Chaos Theory in there too, as we cannot predict the outcome but we can shape the direction of the outcome.

Enough for today, it is late. Enjoy!

Monday, September 12, 2005

Quotes & Links

From Jeneane Seesum at Allied:
Tuesday I'm scheduled to work at one of the shelters in Cobb County where some of the NOLA evacuees are staying. I've been craving that day for a week, since I went and signed up as a red cross volunteer, because the overwhelming urge to CHANGE SOMETHING is haunting my every waking moment.

So I'll change something. Maybe it'll be a trash can liner, maybe I'll change a diaper, maybe I'll change the paper towels in the locker rooms, maybe the toilet paper in the bathrooms, maybe I'll change the ink cartridge in the ink jet printer, if there is a printer, maybe I'll change the way the phone is answered, or maybe I'll change what's for lunch, maybe I'll change my mind, maybe I'll change someone else's mind, or maybe I'll change some tiny little insignificant thing that might be the only little change I can change.

From Shelley Powers at Burningbird:
Another side topic that came up in the comment thread was the impact that meeting people and becoming personal friends has on ‘open’ discourse, in an environment made up of people who have met each other, integrated in tightly with those who have not; with how we react when ‘friends’ are referenced, as compared to those we feel more objective about. This also appeared in the comment thread of a post by David Weinberger.

Either one enters an online discussion to debate the merits of whatever topic is the focus, or we enter a conversation to defend or support a friend. When we mix the two, we put those who have not met others, personally, at a disadvantage. This, also, becomes a failure in social software.

From Dave Pollard at How to Save the World:
There's a company in our community that provides a free, supervised exercise facility to all its employees, and a subsidized cafeteria that offers only healthy foods. I think they're on the right track -- they're rewarding behaviours that repay them as an employer (through healthier, more resilient workers), without getting specific about who's to blame when an individual becomes sick or injured. It's a 'no fault' system.

What is needed to supplement this is more honesty in our society and our economy about many of the things that are bad for our health, but which are very profitable, and which therefore are rarely recognized or addressed as the social evils they really are. Alcohol, for all its benefits, sucks billions out of the economy in death and violence and injury and illness every year, yet we still tolerate advertisements that show its consumption as an essential ingredient of personal happiness. The meats, and many other foods we eat that are advertised to the hilt (especially the fat, salt and sugar-laden "fast-food" varieties) are chemical cesspools that unquestionably add billions of dollars to annual health care costs.

The real answer, I would argue, is not rewarding people for staying healthy (because we can never determine when their health or lack of it is due to their behaviour or factors beyond their control), but rather health care innovations that address the real, preventable causes of illness and injury...

Read the remainder of this here.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Troubadour Blues (Mark Erelli)

Marc sang very well last night. It was a good concert. While I am posting some of his lyrics, you can follow the link to his web site and sample some of his music.

In the meantime, queue the guitar and harmonica:

Troubadour Blues (Mark Erelli)

When I was a boy
I went to hear this picker play
I still recall his blue guitar
Like it was yesterday
I was a powder keg a-waitin'
For someone to light the fuse
He struck a match and I did catch
The troubadour blues

When I got my first guitar
I played until my fingers bled
Though my parents wished
That I were doing something else instead
I wish they'd understand
It isn't something I can choose
Oh mama I was born to sing
The troubadour blues

Troubadour blues
Troubadour blues
All you need's a simple song
Three chords and the truth
Like Hank and Woody
Townes and Jimmie Rodgers used to do
Oh Lord I'm bound to ramble
With those troubadour blues

So I married me a woman
But she's more like a saint
She's alone 200 nights a year
With nary a complaint
Oh babe I hate to leave you lonely
But I need to pay my dues
Forgive me while I'm gone to sing
The troubadour blues


The same old battle's raging
All on down the line
Why does it seem like nothing's changed
Since Woody Guthrie's time?
I ain't afraid to sing about those things
You don't see on the news
ŒCause there's plenty job security
In the troubadour blues

So let me thank you Mr. President
To me you've been so kind
For the well of inspiration
Can dry up from time to time
Each time you open up your mouth
You give me something I can use
Every day another reason
For the troubadour blues

Troubadour blues
Troubadour blues
All you need's a simple song
Three chords and the truth
Like Hank and Woody
Townes and David Carter used to do
Oh Lord I'm bound to ramble
With those troubadour blues

Quotes & Links

Another gem from Patricia Digh at 37 Days

But many times we can’t wait for the systems that created the mess to fix themselves and we can’t wait for the conditions to be right for change. It will take too long. It’s not in their best interest; things are just dandy from where They sit in their chair with arms. The crown fits them. We cannot give our power away to the people who took it from us in the first place.

Instead, put arms on your own chair if you have to. If arms are that important to you, then duct tape them on if you must. Find the change you can and must make. Then fund your own revolution.

Doc Searls shares this link to Dave Rogers who is deconstructing the Cluetrain Manifesto
Let's leave aside the economic realities of feudal economies and indentured servitude, and just consider this: The phrase caveat emptor means, "let the buyer beware." I don't know when it originated, but the New Oxford American Dictionary suggests that it originated in the early 16th century. The industrial revolution is dated around the late 18th and early 19th centuries. So for nearly three centuries, long before the assertion that "markets are conversations" was even a glimmer in a marketer's eye, there was an aphorism that suggested that someone trying to sell you something was someone you might have reason to be wary of. So there's a disconnect here between the notion of "conversation" between peers, and deception or fraud in the act of selling.

Doc's market never existed. And it likely never will.

And why is that? What is the real activity of the marketplace? It is, most assuredly, not conversation.
Good stuff, read the whole thing here.


Wayne Hurlburt writing at Blog Business World has a great posting with tips on search engine optimization for your entries in BLOGGER. That is BLOGGER as the software and not generically for all bloggers although many of the tips would apply to other bloggers.

Read on for the tips.

Pilgrim Highway

By Marc Erelli from his Pilgrim Highway CD

Pilgrim Highway

I'm going down that pilgrim highway
Though none can say for certain where it leads
I believe someday I'll reach a place
Where all my burdens shall be released

So often tested by toil and trial
Onward from the moment we are born
We must be steadfast through every darkened mile
Travelling toward that everlasting morn

So take my hand, brother
Take my hand, sister
In each other we must confide
Many miles to cover
Before we are delivered
Down that pilgrim highway side by side

Though some we love may by the wayside fall
We must never feel abandoned or alone
There'll be a glorious reunion with them all
Just beyond that last bend in the road

Saturday, September 10, 2005

72 Hours

Jamais Cascio has an important posting over at World Changing

"... there are few, if any, locations on the planet not vulnerable to some kind of major disaster. Those of us who live in places that haven't given much thought to how citizens should prepare for disaster should learn from cities and regions where natural disasters are more common. The city of San Francisco's Office of Emergency Services, for example, has set up a terrific website called 72 Hours, spelling out in easy, straightforward language how to prepare for a major disaster. The information focuses a bit more on earthquakes than on other kinds of events, but the vast majority of the content is applicable to just about any kind of traumatic event. The advice is quite good, too: tips for making disaster plans; lists for "Go Bags;" specific sections for planning to aid children, the disabled, and household pets; what to put into an emergency first aid kit; and much more. The site is available in English, Spanish and Chinese."
There is no time like the present to prepare for the future.

Do you think you are ready?

Compare your listing to 72 Hours and if there are differences, share them.

Concert Tonight

I will catch Marc Erelli and Liz Carlisle live as they open the new season at the Circle of Friends Coffeehouse.

Critters for Critters

Much has and will continue to be written in the blogosphere about the recovery of the Hurricane Katrina area and how we can help. From Shelley Powers at Burningbird comes this out of box thinking!
Over a thousand homes in the St. Louis area have volunteered to be ‘foster’ homes for pets from the region, but the Society is still overwhelmed with the magnitude of the rescue operation. Unlike human-related charities, those devoted to animals don’t always have a lot of extra cash on hand.

This led to an idea. I don’t have a lot of extra cash, but I do have some photos of critters, including those of my own cat, Zoë. I checked out eBay’s GivingWorks program and according to the FAQ, if I sell an item and donate 100% of the monies collected to the charity of my choice, it will donate the list and sellers fees. The money is collected by MissionFish, an organization eBay brought in to manage the charitable contributions. They charge a one time 3.00 fee to help run their service, and subtracting the credit card fee, all the money goes to the one charity.

So I decided to try and put together an auction: Critters for Critters. What I’m hoping to do is get people to contribute one or more of their favorite critter photos that can be printed out at 8 x 10 (or close to it in size). I’ll add my own photos to the mix. We’ll then auction off the entire set of weblog-related critter photos in one big sale, and all money will be donated to the Humane Society, The Best Friends Society, and other organizations helping with the critters impacted by Katrina.

If you’re interested in participating, put a link to your photo in comments or send me an email. I’ll then add a link to your weblog post/photo at the bottom of this post, and into to the eBay auction when we start.

Note that the posting you should send the picture links to, is Shelley's post. I will help by contributing during the auction, but I do not want to complicate her process, just help advertise this effort.

Go Shelley!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Quotes & Links

Graeme Codrington over at ? has this posting via Reuters:

... the authorities must pump this water out of New Orleans. To where? Into surrounding lakes, and into the Gulf of Mexico! This is one of the greatest ecological disasters in history in the making!! And the ever-environmentally conscious US administration’s response: “one problem at a time, please.” Read a Reuters briefing on this.

The word for the day comes from David Wolfe at Ageless Marketing:

Concinnity is an ancient English noun, little used today. Perhaps that’s a sign of the times we live in. Impatience for getting to the “bottom line” or to “the point” lessens sensitivity to concinnity. Refined attention necessary to achieve concinnity is less than routine in a society that parses reality on the air in 30-second (or less) sound bites.

Concinnity means, “a skillful blending of the parts achieving an elegant harmony.” While the term usually refers to well crafted artifacts, there are also organizational concinnities – entities reflecting skillful blending of their parts achieving an elegant harmony. Companies that transcend the self-service perspective of Milton Friedman’s model of corporate purpose (to make profits – period!) are likely to be concinnities. Firms of endearment (FoEs) are such companies.

From Jeanne Sessum at Allied via the New York Daily News.
Ten billion dollars are about to pass into the sticky hands of politicians in the No. 1 and No. 3 most corrupt states in America. Worried about looting? You ain't seen nothing yet.

We need to do more than hope and pray. Have you contributed yet?

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Dad's Turn on the crank

Dad's Turn on the crank
Originally uploaded by shersteve.

Home made ice cream does require some work. Everyone got a turn on the crank and everyone enjoyed the delicious "chocolate bean" ice cream after.

It was our first time making chocolate and I think we could have had the cream mix at a higher temp when we added the chocolate. It did not seem to blend in as well as I expected. It left these little spots, kind of like in vanilla bean ice cream. It did not hurt the taste at all, so if anyone wants to make "chocolate bean" ice cream we know the way.

Happy Birthday, Gerald Sherlock!

Happy Birthday
Originally uploaded by shersteve.

Gerald, Dad, or Papa Sherlock celebrated his 80th birthday this weekend. Some of the family got together for the traditional cake on Labor Day.

The weather cooperated very nicely.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Quotes & Links

From Shelley Powers at Burningbird comes this history lesson to put the Katrina caused mess in the South in perspective:
When floods happen, people move, but when the waters recede some return, while others move in. Life goes on, because flooding, no matter how tragic the losses, is a part of life. It is a part of the delta, a legacy and a price for living by the river.

Right now, the delta is being hit again, but this time it isn’t Old Man River who is to blame. Lots of stories about this new flood, too; lots of cries of doom and destruction: Thousands are dead, exclaims the mayor, even while he has people on roofs listening in on radio;Katrina leaves a trail of death and destruction, says the papers, even while people desperately hope for a green cot in a dome in another city; The Mississippi coast is gone, says the governor, even as people pick through rubble and find a single shoe. The recovery will take years, says the President, even as the finger pointing and blaming has begun. Stories about looters and havoc and ruin and how nothing will be the same again.

From Seth Godin at Seth's Blog:

Free KnockKnock ebook now available

Knock Knock is now available for you to read for free. It's a short take on how to use the new online marketing tools to make any website work more effectively.

You'll notice on the second page of the PDF that there's a link that makes it easy to contribute to the Red Cross. I hope you'll take advantage of that.

From Hugh MacLeod at gapingvoid:

Have you ever noticed how impossible and tedious it is to have a conversation with somebody who's only thinking of what's in it for them? What's true of people is also true of products.

I was ahead of the game in blogging about Katrina's aftermath, but if you missed it, you can view it here.