Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Vacation/Holiday/R&R/Trip

Am off abroad for a wee while.. suspect I will not be posting.. back on July 1st.. cheers.

curry queue


curry queue, originally uploaded by Knotty.

The shanti curry queue.. See pic from last week.

Macca tried it today.. "Burp, burp, fart, belch, cooorrrr wasn't arf lovely. Same again mister."

Bike Nut

BBC Sport ran a competition to find an amateur cyclist to ride in the 120 mile Cyclosportive on July1st.

The "winner" was Martin Page from Suffolk.
A 37-year-old PE teacher, whose cycling experience was limited to four miles each way to work. "The initial euphoria has given way to a cold realisation that I have to cycle 120 miles in a day. I kidded myself I could join the local cycling club," he said. "In fact I did once. It was called a reliability run. The looks on their faces when I turned up on a 15-year-old mountain bike; I did feel a plum."

Martin has been keeping a video diary, which can be found here.

The latest with just 2 weeks to go..



He seems to have gone through a very similar experience to my own last year. Except there was no way I would let Joli anywhere near my legs with hot wax!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Message to presidential candidates:

The best way to reduce global warming.. a carbon auction.

by Robert Reich.

le parkour

Monday, June 18, 2007

Jobs Finale?

"Say what? “I think that Google is going to buy Apple,” this person says. “It would be a victory for Apple; they’d get major-league partners, money, and engineers. And it would be a victory for Steve—a huge win that lets him leave the stage.”

The speculation about Google has a ring of plausibility. Google CEO Eric Schmidt is now on the Apple board; engineers at the two companies are collaborating on Google Maps for the iPhone; and then there’s the YouTube deal for Apple TV. But is there any reason to think that in such a merger Jobs wouldn’t wind up as CEO—or, at least, chairman of the board?

No, there isn’t. If anything, it seems to me, Jobs’s vaulting ambition, his sense of omnipotence, have only been enhanced by his recent triumphs—and traumas. He has beaten back death, literally and metaphorically. He has returned to his first love, repaired the broken marriage, and made the bond more intimate than ever: Jobs and Apple are one, indivisible. Now, with Gates soon retiring from Microsoft, and with Grove and so many other Valley potentates of his generation having left the scene, Jobs stands alone atop the high-tech heap. This is the position he has longed for all his life. The likelihood of his surrendering it voluntarily is vanishingly close to nil.

Of course, if the iPhone is a runaway success, Jobs won’t have to surrender anything—and it very well may be. Less than two weeks from now, when the phone hits the streets, the consumerist pandemonium will likely be hysterical. Once again, Jobs may have fashioned a totemic object that will capture the culture—and cause rival CEOs to have coronary events. No one else in history has pulled of this kind of coup, as Jobs has, with four different products. The Apple II. The Mac. The iPod. The computer-animated feature film. Betting against a track record like that would be a dangerous wager. Especially when you know, deep down, that you want an iPhone. Bad.

But Jobs has been wrong before. And if the iPhone proves a disappointment, his reputation will take a precipitous tumble: from unerring visionary to just another overreaching mogul. What’s at stake for Jobs, then, isn’t money or power—for no matter how the iPhone fares, he’ll still have both in abundance. What’s at stake is the thing that now must matter to him above all: the ending of his story."

New York magazine

Clever.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Friday, June 15, 2007

spot the blimp


spot the blimp, originally uploaded by Knotty.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Philip K. Dick


"..with his recent celebration as the sage of futurism, and his pervasiveness on bookshelves and in Hollywood, the early predictions about the growth of his influence have come to seem prescient.. ..never saw a BlackBerry, an iPod or a modern-day cell phone.. ..characters are routinely shackled and brought low by technological innovations that were ostensibly created to improve human existence.. ..deeply alarmed about what he saw as the encroachment of programmable machinery into human life.. ..the legitimate worry that human beings were merging with the technology that was supposed to be serving them and becoming less human.. ..spent his life writing in ardent defense of the human and warning against the perils that would flow from an uncritical embrace of technology.. ..new readers who know him only from the movies will find it even darker and more disturbing - and quite relevant to the technologically obsessed present."

IHT dreaming of electric sheep


You need to pick and choose, but there are some great stories amongst his work.

More Monkey than Man? Go get shorn..


ManShear07

On the 22nd June 2007 (Friday), a highly trained team of sheep shearers will descend on London.

Their aim: to shear as many men in a day as possible.

Do you dream of having the body of a greek god? Do you know someone who is more monkey than man?

Sign-up to be sheared.. oh, and watch the video clip.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Fabrication

What did the bolt of fabric tell his daughter when she threatened to run away to India?

"Go ahead.. you'll be sari."

defective yeti

3 pound 75


3 pound 75, originally uploaded by Knotty.

Shanti curry.. Thai style, herb & coconut, chicken, fresh tomato, egg, spinach, corn, potato and rice. Plus additional Green Chilli Paste. Cor.

Y900. Yum.

Dog Days

"Between this summer and next, this latest beagle — the third of my adult life — will age from zero to 1 (or zero to 7), on a fast track to reduce me to mourning sometime in my early 50s."

this paragraph made me pause.. but then, this line brought back a smile..

"..we discovered that the beagle’s natural prey is not the rabbit, but the baguette."

Beagle ownership in the NYTimes.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Bonk

"I tell you, there’s nothing like a good cycling bonk to add excitement and drama to a ride, provided you’re not the one bonking. It gives you a chance to relay all your cycling wisdom, knowing full well that the person you are informing is too woozy to successfully punch you."

Wise words from fatty as per normal..

Air Car

The MDI Air Car, a car powered by compressed air.

I would like to invest in this company. It is not listed, so unless someone wants to chip in with me for a production license and set up a factory, I guess I will have to wait for an IPO.

Imagine that.. me actually doing something relevant to my bachelor's degree. Ho hum.

Abolish Adolescence

Fascinating Psychology Today article about the legal and emotional constraints on today's youth that I really agree with.

Some excerpts..

"We have completely isolated young people from adults and created a peer culture. We stick them in school and keep them from working in any meaningful way, and if they do something wrong we put them in a pen with other "children." In most nonindustrialized societies, young people are integrated into adult society as soon as they are capable, and there is no sign of teen turmoil. Many cultures do not even have a term for adolescence."

"
teens learn virtually everything they know from other teens, who are in turn highly influenced by certain aggressive industries. This makes no sense. Teens should be learning from the people they are about to become. When young people exit the education system and are dumped into the real world, which is not the world of Britney Spears, they have no idea what's going on and have to spend considerable time figuring it out."

via Marginal Revolution, 2blowhards and Psychology Today.

I think I was lucky that a work ethic was instilled in me early on by my parents. I was not stuck on a factory line by any stretch of the imagination, but I was certainly brought up to think for myself, take responsibility for my actions and my property. I looked to the adults around me for direction more than my peers. I took this stuff for granted but this blog entry and article expresses some of my latent thoughts on the topic very well.

Chill dude



It's the summer, it's hot, and will get hotter.

"Osaka's Kiribai Chemical Co., who invented those clever kairo hand warmers, has released a series of cooling packs to keep kids and teenagers from melting.

Heads can stay chilled thanks to the company's hat cool pack, which can be affixed to any cap. It lowers body temp by two degrees celsius (about 3°F). There's also an ice-in-a-can spray that shoots out -10 degree frost onto towels for handy face wiping. But the best place to ice down? Necks and pits. A 15 degree cool neck wrap keeps arteries from boiling over and helps with circulation. The arm pit packs help reduce body heat in the chest. Kiribai recommends using both together for best results. So cool. Literally."

via Cool Hunting

Invented for kids to prevent hyperthermia, but I wonder how Peppery would appreciate a squirt of ice-in-a-can?

Monday, June 11, 2007

Sweep

"Emirates Team New Zealand won its fifth consecutive race of the Final to sweep the Louis Vuitton Cup 5-0 and advance to the America’s Cup Match (against Switzerland). Italy’s Luna Rossa Challenge put up a brave fight in this final contest on Wednesday afternoon, but were no match for the mighty Kiwis.

Racing was postponed for a short time to allow the light sea breeze to stabilise and settle. The fifth race of the Louis Vuitton Cup Final began in an 8 knot Southeasterly, with hundreds of spectator boats out to see Emirates Team New Zealand claim the Louis Vuitton Cup.

The Kiwi team returned to Port America’s Cup to a heroes welcome, settling in for the prize giving ceremony where the coveted Louis Vuitton Cup trophy was to be presented to a triumphant Emirates Team New Zealand. "

americascup.com

Friday, June 08, 2007

Friday Night

Choice 1. Go out, go mad, stagger home at dawn, write off the rest of the weekend.

Choice 2. Go home, QNI, gym Saturday, catch a movie, long ride Sunday.

Decisions, decisions, decisions...

Thursday, June 07, 2007

taxi terebi


taxi terebi, originally uploaded by Knotty.

My taxi to Roppongi Midtown last night had a TV.. not much on though.

Yum yum

"Quite probably the first time a bicycle is offered with a galvanized finish. Quite possibly one of the tightest rides out there. Quite likely one of the cleanest chassis upon which to stamp your own mojo.

Rear hub can be flipped, if you want to run a single-speed freewheel. Fork is drilled for a front brake, if you so choose.

Swobo saddle, machined alloy handlebar end caps and dual-density grips are custom, as well as the white rims and white handlebars. Custom forged rear-entry dropouts with threaded adjuster screw, for proper wheel alignment."

I think I might have just possibly found a use for my credit card this week.. well, only if they ship to Japan.. which it appears they do.. for a hundred bucks.. that's done then.. its the sleekness and flippable rear hub that has made me all weak in the knees.. mmmm, singlespeed... mmmm, fixed... no brakes, eek...

Swobo Sanchez

Joli will be SO pleased!

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

last one


last one, originally uploaded by Knotty.

I don't know about you but i think i like this shot, camera phone and everything!

peppers


peppers, originally uploaded by Knotty.

On the floor but at the back!

Cows

Economic Models explained with Cows

SOCIALISM
You have 2 cows.
You give one to your neighbour.

COMMUNISM
You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and gives you some milk.

FASCISM
You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and sells you some milk.

NAZISM
You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and shoots you.

BUREAUCRATISM
You have 2 cows.
The State takes both, shoots one, milks the other, and then throws the milk away...

TRADITIONAL CAPITALISM
You have two cows.
You sell one and buy a bull.
Your herd multiplies, and the economy grows.
You sell them and retire on the income.

SURREALISM
You have two giraffes.
The government requires you to take harmonica lessons

AN AMERICAN CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You sell one, and force the other to produce the milk of four cows.
Later, you hire a consultant to analyse why the cow has dropped dead.

ENRON VENTURE CAPITALISM
You have two cows.
You sell three of them to your publicly listed company, using letters of credit opened by your brother-in-law at the bank, then execute a debt/equity swap with an associated general offer so that you get all four cows back, with a tax exemption for five cows. The milk rights of the six cows are transferred via an intermediary to a Cayman Island Company secretly owned by the majority shareholder who sells the rights to all seven cows back to your listed company. The annual report says the company owns eight cows, with an option on one more. No balance sheet provided with the release. The public then buys your bull.

A FRENCH CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You go on strike, organise a riot, and block the roads, because you want three cows.

A JAPANESE CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and produce twenty times the milk. You then create a clever cow cartoon image called 'Cowkimon' and market it worldwide.

AN ITALIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows, but you don't know where they are.
You decide to have lunch.

A RUSSIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You count them and learn you have five cows.
You count them again and learn you have 42 cows.
You count them again and learn you have 2 cows.
You stop counting cows and open another bottle of vodka.

A SWISS CORPORATION
You have 5000 cows. None of them belong to you.
You charge the owners for storing them.

A CHINESE CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You have 300 people milking them.
You claim that you have full employment, and high bovine productivity.
You arrest the newsman who reported the real situation.

AN INDIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows.
You worship them.

A BRITISH CORPORATION
You have two cows.
Both are mad.

A NEW ZEALAND CORPORATION
You have two cows.
The one on the left looks very attractive.

AN AUSTRALIAN CORPORATION
You have two cows.
Business seems pretty good.
You close the office and go for a few beers to celebrate.


Old... but still good.

Fuji Results

Carlos 1:30:13
Bryon 1:31:03
James 1:36:55
Ono-san 1:41:35
Walter 2:01:14
Adam 2:20:03

I am so losing some weight and training specifically for this next year.

What the world eats.



Japan $317.25















Great Britain $253.15
















USA $341.98







via kottke
and a photo essay
from Time magazine.

Magazine Cover Indicator

Are you aware of the magazine cover contrary indicator?

It is the situation or occurence, that once a financial view or stock pick or property market valuation is in the 'public arena' then the contrary will occur with a reasonable short period of time.

For this example we start with this cover to the left, Business Week February 19, 2007.. Low, low, low interest rates and "why money may stay cheap longer than you think".. The graph, shown below, illustrates the point reasonably nicely. One month after the cover story, the 10 Year Treasury Note yields hits its lowest level (4.48%), and since then it has been nothing but up.

From a chartists point of view, the graph now shows a breakout to the upside indicating the market's anticipation of further rate rises for the US.




via The Big Picture where you can find the original post, other examples of the phenomenon and arguments for yields and rates to continue to rise.

I haven't time to go look, but I would bet there were banner headlines in Time, Newsweek, etc. lauding the US property market a month or so before the rally ceased.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Ocean's Thirteen

PITT: Aw, they were just grooming you for Batman.

Time interview.

The Perfect Husband

Several men are in the locker room of a golf club. A cell phone on a bench rings and a man engages the hands-free speaker- function and begins to talk. Everyone else in the room stops to listen. MAN: "Hello"
WOMAN: "Honey, it's me. Are you at the club?"
MAN: "Yes."
WOMAN: "I'm at the mall now and found this beautiful leather coat. It's only $1,000. Is it OK if I buy it?"
MAN: "Sure, go ahead if you like it that much."
WOMAN: "I also stopped by the Mercedes dealership and saw the new 2007 models. I saw one I really liked."
MAN: "How much?"
WOMAN: "$65,000."
MAN: "OK, but for that price I want it with all the options."
WOMAN: "Great! Oh, and one more thing. The house we wanted last year is back on the market. They're asking $950,000."
MAN: "Well, then go ahead and give them an offer, but just offer $900,000."
WOMAN: "OK. I'll see you later! I love you!"
MAN: "Bye, I love you, too."
The man hangs up. The other men in the locker room are looking at him in astonishment.

Then he smiles and asks: "Anyone know whose phone this is?"

Sunday, June 03, 2007

toast to the bikes


toast to the bikes, originally uploaded by Knotty.

finished!


finished!, originally uploaded by Knotty.

About 1 hour 40 mins.. Will try harder next time.. Well some training would be a good start!

and they're off


and they're off, originally uploaded by Knotty.

any moment now


any moment now, originally uploaded by Knotty.

fuji gurning


fuji gurning, originally uploaded by Knotty.

banana of joy toy


banana of joy toy, originally uploaded by Knotty.

The greatest cycle team to date.. Awesome!

pre-start area


pre-start area, originally uploaded by Knotty.

pre-start bag collection


pre-start bag collection, originally uploaded by Knotty.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

fuji


fuji, originally uploaded by Knotty.

bikes


bikes, originally uploaded by Knotty.

climb japan!


climb japan!, originally uploaded by Knotty.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Comments




I altered the blog settings to allow comments to be made more easily (you don't have to type in the weird letters anymore).

Go crazy - I dare you!

Liar

"There is a very simple test that can help determine your ability to lie. Using the first finger of your dominant hand, draw a capital letter Q on your forehead.

Some people draw the letter Q in such a way that they themselves can read it. That is, they place the tail of the Q on the right-hand side of their forehead. Other people draw the letter in a way that can be read by someone facing them, with the tail of the Q on the left side of their forehead. This quick test provides a rough measure of a concept known as "self-monitoring". High self-monitors tend to draw the letter Q in a way in which it could be seen by someone facing them. Low self-monitors tend to draw the letter Q in a way in which it could be read by themselves.

High self-monitors tend to be concerned with how other people see them. They are happy being the centre of attention, can easily adapt their behaviour to suit the situation in which they find themselves, and are skilled at manipulating the way in which others see them. As a result, they tend to be good at lying. In contrast, low self-monitors come across as being the "same person" in different situations. Their behaviour is guided more by their inner feelings and values, and they are less aware of their impact on those around them. They also tend to lie less in life, and so not be so skilled at deceit."

I drew the "Q" with the tail to the right making me a low self-monitor and hence a poor liar.
And I thought I was quite devious.. or is that not the same as lying?

via Marginal Revolution

Fuji Hill Climb

A small group of intrepid (read, stupid) cyclists from BGC, HSBC, GS and CS have
entered the Mt. Fuji Hill Climb this Sunday 3rd June.

Distance 24km
Elevation (Start) 1050m, (Finish) 2355m
Average Grade 5.2%
Maximum Grade 7.8%

We set up a charity page here http://www.justgiving.com/fujisan in aid of Indonesian Children's Relief, all donations gratefully accepted. If anyone is interested to join us next year, please just let me know.

Thanks and Regards.

Traffic problem

This morning on the way to work I rear-ended a car at some lights whilst not really paying attention.
The driver got out.. he was a dwarf.

He said, "I'm not happy"...

I replied, "Well, which one are you then?"

kita-shinagawa lanterns


kita-shinagawa lanterns, originally uploaded by Knotty.

tokyo american club


tokyo american club, originally uploaded by Knotty.

In about 6 months time