Monday, February 24, 2014

No-blog February

No proper post again this week. I promise this thing isn't turning into a Twitter. although this particular post will be nearly as terse. Today, I wanted to review a book my club just met about, but right now I'm directing the time it would take to write down my thoughts on it into more business start-up activities (who knew there were so many such activities required?). So instead, I'll just say: I recommend this book. Anyone who finds that one sentence micro-review compelling is welcome to borrow it from me.

In the meantime, as an apology for making this a no-blog February, here's a couple of pictures of my friends' adorable puppy!

Isn't that just the most dapper pup you've ever seen?

Remy discovers his tail and, naturally, decides to kill it.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Valentine's Day, President's Day, and the unremarkable, but worthwhile, days in between

Happy President's Day, readers! I hope you are celebrating the holiday in a manner of which our forefathers would approve. I for one am drinking coffee and trying to catch up on some writing as is my way. Others I know are having to work today, and thus must quietly remember our presidential forebears in their offices and cube spaces.

At any rate, while taking a break from the other blog I'm supposed to be writing (what? a second blog? details to follow soonish), I thought I would update about my weekend. To celebrate our first Valentine's Day as a married couple, Sam and I chose to do basically the same thing we've done as an unmarried couple: avoiding the fray. This is not to say we don't exchange candy and flowers and cards (always cards) aplenty, but rather than battle busy restaurants with suddenly rigid prix fixe menus, we opted to stay in, make pasta, and binge on House of Cards. After all, every day is a special day to tell your loved ones you care, but House of Cards episodes get dropped on Netflix but rarely.

On Saturday, unrelated for the most part to Valentine's Day, we went to the Hayden Planetarium to see the new space show. I'd actually never been to the planetarium before, so it had been on my list to do at some point anyway, and since there had been some buzz about Dark Universe, it seemed like as good a time as any to check it out.
From the Dark Universe. Redshift aplenty. 
The show was fun, although thankfully only about 20 minutes because I could see getting a headache after not too long. After the planetarium, we walked around the American Museum of Natural History for a bit. I'd only been there once as an adult, and I have to say, I think it's a lot better to go to if you are or are with a child. Otherwise, it's just a collection of very old looking dioramas. That said, I do really enjoy their rock and mineral collection. (Probably should have taken some pictures of it to bely that fact.)

After the museum, we braved the snowstorm in a car with but one working windshield wiper to make to New Jersey for the weekend. I know I should be done with snow pictures after last week's snooze fest, but here's one more from my in-laws house. This is what happens in the suburbs when the snow doesn't get shoveled away after every storm:
I'm calling that a few feet.
I dedicated my deadlift muscles in pursuit of shoveling a few paths so that my brother-in-law's elderly dog could make it out to his favorite spot in the yard. Or rather, I helped dig one path to that purpose and then a second path that was supposed to lead from the back door to the gate, but only after we shoveled there did we realize the gate was frozen down. Nevertheless, I'm choosing to consider it a nice Sunday morning workout as opposed to wasted energy. 

At any rate, I hope tonight's snow fall shall be this season's last. Happy President's Day to you all!

Monday, February 10, 2014


This will not be a substantive post. I spent the weekend working on a business project that should be launching in the next couple of weeks. Terribly exciting from my perspective, but not terribly blog-worthy...yet. Instead of a proper, news-worthy post, but so as not to disappoint those of you who do check this thing, I'm including some pictures of the only other notable thing happening right now: the fact that it keeps snowing every few days or so. Behold:

Okay, you can't really see the snow in this picture, but I took it on the way to the gym. You have no idea how exciting it is that the sun is rising now by the time I get there. 

Notice that despite this being shortly after the snow had stopped, the roads are clear. Thanks,  De Blasio!

I thought the entrance to the Sculpture Park made a nice juxtaposition. 

A friend I made at the park. 
A winter wonderland. Also, check out that awesome sky!

This isn't a snow picture either, but I couldn't have another cat in this post without also balancing it with a Dinah picture. 
I don't plan to work as much next weekend, so I'll be back with proper updates soon! In the meantime, enjoy staying warm.

Monday, February 3, 2014

L'essential est invisible pour les yeux

I have to say, the NFL really lucked out with the Super Bowl yesterday (well aside from the fact that it was the most boring one I've ever set through, and really I only managed to get through the whole thing because I was at someone else's apartment and there was a lot of hummus). Nevertheless, it was but a brief pocket of warmth in this otherwise endless winter. This morning when I walked to the gym in what my phone insists on terming "flurries" but I would more accurately describe as "heavy snow," there was already a good couple of inches, with no sign of stopping. I don't put a lot of stock into the whole Groundhog Day thing, generally, but this year I don't doubt its accuracy.

But weather and football aside, I spent a lovely weekend catching up with various friends around the city, but more interestingly (from a blog reader standpoint) I went to see the exhibit at the JP Morgan Library on The Little Prince. I've always thought it was a wonderful story. The first (and only) book I've ever read entirely in French (albeit with some cheating). It's also the reason I was so excited at the Botswana border crossing when I saw baobab trees for the first time. I may have taken a picture in my excitement shortly before I was warned by one of the guides that taking photos at the border crossing was illegal. It's also the reason I've heard of French pop singer Mylene Farmer, although really just the one song that references the book. Nevertheless, it's catchy.

For the sake of having an image.
Le Petit Prince has been translated into 250 languages and braille and sold over 140 million copies around the world. While we read it and learned about it in high school, I hadn't known that it was actually written in New York. Antoine de Saint-ExupĂ©ry was exiled from France after the German occupation and stayed in a townhouse in Manhattan and a mansion on Long Island. It was in these two locations during his period of exile from his homeland that he wrote the touching story of friendship, love, loneliness, and a little prince traveling far from his home planet.

The exhibit was small but contained many of the original water colors and hand written text from the earliest drafts. I was interested to learn that he had actually written over twice the eventual word count of the story and edited down. Whole planets, characters, and plot lines were eliminated and the attention he paid to each line was extraordinary. The title of this post and perhaps the book's best known line/theme had at least twenty different versions before he settled on that one. He handed off the draft to a friend in Manhattan before leaving on the Allied mission during which his plane would be lost over the Mediterranean.
You couldn't take pictures in the exhibit, but I took this from an article on the exhibition. 
All in all, it was a wonderful exhibit, and if you're in New York in the next couple of months (it closes April 27), I definitely recommend seeing it. Bonus: if you go on Fridays between 7-9, it's free, although I will say it's quite crowded.