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KGI: Apple to release all new high-end over-ear headphones later this year

KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo today reports that Apple will release ‘high-end over-ear’ headphones in late fall ‘at the earliest’. Apparently featuring an all new design, it sounds like this is not a successor to the Beats Studio 3, but it will be Apple’s AirPods equivalent for premium over-ear headphones.

The analyst also corroborates the release of upgraded AirPods with a new case to support wireless charging and an improved W1 chip.

more…

Source: 9to5Mac | 25 Feb 2018 | 1:16 am

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Tell us about your pop culture weekend: February 23-25

Our weekly thought-starter asks you (and us) a simple question each week: What pop culture did you consume this weekend, and what did you think of it? If you have suggestions for AVQ&A questions, big or small, you can email them to us here.

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Source: The A.V. Club | 25 Feb 2018 | 1:00 am

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The Walking Dead returns for you zombie loyalists

Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Sunday, February 25. All times are Eastern. 

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Source: The A.V. Club | 25 Feb 2018 | 1:00 am

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Could the tech companies run *everything* better?

Under one view, the major tech companies lucked into some pieces of rapidly scalable software.  They are phenomenal at producing and distributing such software, but otherwise they put on their pants one leg at a time, just like the rest of us.  They are not especially productive at marginal activities beyond their core competencies.

Under the second view, the major tech companies have developed new managerial technologies for hiring, handling, and motivating super-smart employees.  That is the reason why the tech companies have become phenomenal at producing and distributing rapidly scalable software.  But if tech companies turn their attention to other productive activities, they would do very very well.  Alex for instance thinks that Apple ought to buy a university.  Or you might expect that Google’s “scallion fried fish” dish would be especially tasty.  After all, do not smarter people make for better cooks?

Yet a third view starts with the idea of labor scarcity, at least for the very talented folks.  Good, ambitious, non-risk-averse managerial talent is super, super-scarce.  The tech companies have a lot of it — good for them — and they pay for it by producing and distributing readily scalable software.  In that setting, there is usually some slack within the tech company, so if the tech company takes on a new activity, it will excel at it, at least provided it does not try to move beyond the margin allowed by its collected, on-call talent.  Yet if the tech company were to undertake a massive expansion into many non-tech fields, it would be just as talent-constrained as anyone else.

Which are these three views is correct?  What if you had to pick three percentages that sum to one?  How about 30-30-40?

Is there another contending view I am missing?

Addendum: A very important question is at what rate the existence of the tech companies boosts the incentive for individuals to become one of these very talented cogs in the machine of grand productivity.  Training and talent-spotting matters!  And just as tennis players keep on getting better, so can we expect the same from talented, high-cooperation workers, at least as long as the rewards are rising.

Is this actually the variable that determines how much good the big tech companies do for the world as a whole?

The post Could the tech companies run *everything* better? appeared first on Marginal REVOLUTION.

Source: Marginal REVOLUTION | 25 Feb 2018 | 12:37 am

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Super Super Fly: Srisaket Sor Rungvisai Wins Atop Golden Card

As a boxing fan, you just live for cards like the one we got on HBO Saturday night, when Srisaket Sor Rungvisai defeated Juan Francisco Estrada in an important and extremely enjoyable main event — and the rest of the night lived up to expectations, too.

Srisaket Sor Rungivsai proved he wasn’t just a one- (or two-)hit wonder in claiming the legitimate junior bantamweight championship via majority decision over Juan Francisco Estrada, establishing that his wins over former pound-for-pound king Roman Gonzalez were no illusion.

You don’t see elite talent + outstanding action like this very often, and it was worth every penny. Pick a round, and most any of them were difficult to score. Estrada played counterpuncher to Sor Rungvisai’s aggression, and it was a classic of the genre.

Sor Rungvisai won the early rounds, Estrada came on in the middle rounds and for the most part, Sor Rungvisai controlled the late rounds. But Estrada won the 12th, one of the best rounds you’ll ever see in boxing. Estrada fought like a guy who need a knockout and went for it, and Sor Rungvisai stood and took it.

Estrada had the perceived boxing advantage coming in, but even though Estrada threw the entire toolbox at Sor Rungvisai, the Thai fighter proved he wasn’t just the bigger man (he was, and it mattered) or the bigger puncher (he was, and it mattered), but a guy who could box beautifully, with great head movement and almost as much variety as Estrada’s endless arsenal.

If you care about technical boxing, or if you care about brawling — either way, you got everything you could’ve dreamed of in this fight This writer scored it 116-112 for Sor Rungvisai, compared to official scores of 114-114, 115-113 and 117-113. The first two are perfectly fine, the third a bit much, but if you had to pick someone to win, Sor Rungvisai was probably the right choice. Rematch, please.

The undercard wasn’t much worse, which is saying something. “SuperFly2” was worth the price of admission.

McWilliams Arroyo claimed the upset victory at 115 over Carlos Cuadras, whose bacne spread to frontne and whose (perhaps-PED resultant) power wasn’t enough to make up for Arroyo’s sharper boxing technique. It was another exhibition of the perfect mix of boxing and brawling, with both fighters hurt at times and swings of momentum comparable, if inferior, to the main event. The Arroyo brothers may not have lived up to expectations so far, but this is about as good as it gets for them.

The crowd booed Donnie Nietes vs Juan Carlos Reveco, but it’s hard to see why. Maybe it started slowly and was relatively one-sided, but both men threw tons of punches and landed plenty. Nietes, a (non-super) flyweight, has been one of the best, most consistent, most prolific fighters of his generation, and he showed his quality with a 7th round technical knockout over a quality contender. He still lacks a marquee win, but if he can find an opponent of remotely his caliber, it’d be hard to pick that person over Nietes. On the other hand, the fight was somewhat disgraceful thanks to the ref not stopping the fight earlier, with Reveco out on his feet in the 6th, still messy in his corner between rounds and ready to (no exaggeration) die before the knockdown in the 7th that led his corner to finally throw in the towel.

(Srisaket Sor Rungvisai lands a right on Juan Carlos Estrada; via)

The post Super Super Fly: Srisaket Sor Rungvisai Wins Atop Golden Card appeared first on Queensberry Rules.

Source: Bloguin.com Blogs | 25 Feb 2018 | 12:35 am

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Arctic Convoy JW 53 battered in gales
25th February 1943: Arctic Convoy JW 53 battered in gales I remember trying to use an Aldis lamp from our bridge to signal to a Corvette and found it very difficult since one minute she would be in sight, then she would go down the trough of the wave and all I could see would be her top masts; then up she would come and our ship would go down and all that would be seen was water, but eventually we got the message through.

Source: World War II Today | 25 Feb 2018 | 12:00 am

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Leaked images claim to offer first look at ‘iPhone X Plus’ displays

Several reports have indicated that Apple has a fresh lineup of new iPhone models in the works for this year, including a larger 6.5-inch model with the iPhone X design. Now, a pair of images have surfaced on the MacX forums that claim to offer a first look at the ‘iPhone X Plus’ screen size…

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Source: 9to5Mac | 24 Feb 2018 | 11:06 pm

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A Case Against Gun Control

Previously in this series:

What’s the mail like from those who reject the need for new gun laws? Here are two samples. The first is — unfortunately, but realistically—representative in its tone and argumentative style of most of the dissenting messages that have arrived:

No mass shootings else where? China...Mao...unarmed public....millions killed

Russia....gulag....KGB...unknown number killed....unarmed public

Balkans....Serb nationalism....thousands killed....unarmed public

You can argue both sides until you are blue in the face, but the way this country's government acts I want to be able to protect those I love and my property.

I also believe that this country has turned away from the concepts that made it great. The media has been complicit in this by promoting "headline" horror stories to increase market share or to scoop others.

The latest shooting has just as much or more to do with the mental health crisis in this country than guns, but let's blame an inanimate item and not the user. It's part of the failure to make people take responsibility for their actions that is condoned by politicians and media both.

To truly fix societies problems is our greatest challenge, using a type of firearm to blame ALL societies ills is not going to solve anything. If you are not promoting a broad fix to a social problem then you are promoting a narrow "headline" grabbing stance, then on to the next"headline".

Americans are letting others think for them i.e. jump on any bandwagon. People need to think for themselves, the most underused human organ these days is the brain

To the reader’s last point I say: Amen.

***

A different kind of argument comes from a reader who contrasts my enthusiasm, as a small-plane pilot, for the “right to fly,” with my skepticism of AR-15 owners’ right to enjoy, use, or even possess their weapons. The reader says:

In response to your notes on the AR-15’s I think the pro-AR or at least neutral AR position comes down to that despite the high profile shooting, the actual deaths from AR’s are a small portion of total deaths and the lawful owners of AR’s don’t see why they should be deprived of their rights due to the illegal actions of others.

Read On »

Source: James Fallows | The Atlantic | 24 Feb 2018 | 1:40 pm

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Saturday assorted links

1. The re-promotion of Peter Navarro.

2. Norway is worried about winning too much (NYT).  They even offer aid to other countries to compete against them, for fear that otherwise the rest of the world will lose interest in those sports.

3. Profile of Peter Sloterdijk.

4. Were women better represented in Victorian fiction?

5. A lot of the gains from tax reform are going to domestically-oriented firms (The Economist).

The post Saturday assorted links appeared first on Marginal REVOLUTION.

Source: Marginal REVOLUTION | 24 Feb 2018 | 1:24 pm

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Eighth Army reaches the Mareth Line in Tunisia
24th February 1943: Eighth Army reaches the Mareth Line in Tunisia As usual the Jocks are perched on the sky-line, indifferent to observation. They sit in the sun stripped to the waist, shaving or cleaning their riiies. My sergeant insists that this has a demoralising effect on the enemy. He is a believer in the divisional Tradition. It is as though the half-clad men were saying to the Germans, “Well, here we are. We’ve caught up with you. We know you’re there in those bloody hills and this is all we care.” It is magnificent folly. It will last till the shells come over.

Source: World War II Today | 24 Feb 2018 | 12:00 am

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‘Scripted’ controversy: CNN releases emails of correspondence with Florida student
'Scripted' controversy: CNN releases emails of correspondence with Florida student
CNN appears to have had enough. On Friday afternoon, the network released email correspondence between one of its producers, Carrie Stevenson, and a student from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School after last week’s school shooting in Parkland, Fla. The exchanges roared into the news following Wednesday night’s CNN town hall meeting on gun violence. Colton […]

Source: Erik Wemple | 23 Feb 2018 | 7:28 pm

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Life is complicated.
I was going to write a very funny post today but I took Dorothy Barker to the vet for her annual shots and she had a very severe allergic reaction to one of them and the vet has been observing … Continue reading

Source: The Bloggess | 23 Feb 2018 | 2:50 pm

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Real Life Charts, graphs and charts made from found objects

Michelle Rial

Michelle Rial

Michelle Rial

Designer Michelle Rial makes these clever and charming charts and posts them to her Instagram account. Some of the charts are hand-drawn but my favorite ones are made using real world objects, like the ones above. Reminds me of XKCD, Christoph Niemann, and Mari Andrew. Rial has posters, mugs, tote bags, and other items featuring her charts for sale on Society6.

Tags: design   infoviz   Michelle Rial

Source: kottke.org | 23 Feb 2018 | 2:43 pm

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‘I do not know if the president is having an affair’: Michael Wolff squirms on Dutch TV
'I do not know if the president is having an affair': Michael Wolff squirms on Dutch TV
After several minutes of interrogation about a central drama surrounding his new book, Michael Wolff said this: “I will just clean this up. . . . I do not know if the president is having an affair.” Those comments came in an interview Thursday with Twan Huys of the Dutch TV show “College Tour.” “Do I […]

Source: Erik Wemple | 23 Feb 2018 | 1:10 pm

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“Even the Stiffest People Can Do the Splits”

Eiko Splits

In Japan, the current cultural successor to The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up is Even the Stiffest People Can Do the Splits, a book by “world-renowned yoga teacher” Eiko that promises to teach anyone how to do the splits in just four weeks.

Whether you spend your days running marathons or slouching over a keyboard, everyone can benefit from stretching and the increased flexibility that comes along with it. With only five minutes of stretching a day, you’ll be doing perfect splits in four weeks and experiencing a host of health benefits such better circulation, fewer joint injuries, toned muscles, improved balance, and much more!

As a keyboard sloucher who has been not getting enough exercise, I am tempted to try this, if only to surprise my kids with some stealth flexibility. (via ny times)

Tags: books   Eiko   Even the Stiffest People Can Do the Splits

Source: kottke.org | 23 Feb 2018 | 12:40 pm

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Never Worrying

One of my friends likes to remind me that everyone is worrying all the time, because he senses that I almost never worry. He's right, and when I do worry it tends to be a more active process where there's something happening and I'm trying to figure out what to do about it. I'm not really even sure that can be defined as worry.

Of course, a large part of being able to rarely worry is that I have a very good life. If I was in an abusive relationship and under constant threat of violence, I have to assume that I would worry all the time.

While there are circumstances from which it is very difficult to extricate oneself, I've found that a lot of not worrying is just putting yourself in a position where you have few things which concern you.

A perfect example is living below your means. I have always been perfectly willing to live below my means, even when there wasn't all that much room below the bar. For a while I lived in my RV and cooked the same lentil, quinoa, and vegetable stew every night for dinner. Though I really enjoyed that lifestyle, it was certainly less convenient and comfortable than living in a nice apartment and eating out every night.

I think that it is nearly always worth it to trade convenience and comfort for peace of mind. I felt very motivated when I lived in my RV, and the lack of worry gave me the mental space in which to work. Worry can paralyze, but discomfort doesn't paralyze unless it's extreme.

I also eat healthy food, abstain from all drugs and alcohol, and live a relatively active life. That gives me excellent health, which causes me to worry very little about illness. I also avoid medical treatment except in the case of emergency (which I've never needed so far), so seeing my body recover from minor colds and illness makes me worry when it happens the next time.

I also spend a lot of time systematically eliminating things which might worry me. I take time to finish up projects and tie up loose ends so that I don't have a million small things floating around my head. I build automatic systems to email me, keep track of things, or automate things. For example, when I go too far from my house the water valve automatically closes and the water heater turns off. I don't think people are aware of the plaque-like buildup of too many tiny worries or the free feeling of eliminating them.

Beyond removing myself from stressful situations and investing time in eliminating stressors, I have spent significant effort training myself mentally. Many years ago I realized that the one constant in my life would always be my brain, so I should make it as good as possible. Not in an intellectual sense, but in an operating sense. I want for my thought patterns to support me and enable me, and I constantly train myself to ensure that they do.

For example, as soon as I feel a little bit of worry, my immediate response is to completely erase the worry by going through a series of thoughts that I believe to be 100% true. This isn't a rigid list, but rather a typical flow I would have:

"I've worried before and everything in my life is great now, which means that all of that worry was probably useless. If that's true, this one must be too."

"No one has everything go correctly in their life, so to expect that is completely ridiculous. It's more important to exert influence to make most things go right."

"When something goes wrong, which it seems it may, the most important thing I can do is recover from it. Rather than worry, I should pre-plan my response to any likely scenario."

"People have much bigger problems than this. It is insensitive for me to worry about something so small when others are worrying about life or death situations."

I could go on and on. These thoughts come extremely naturally to me because I used to force myself to generate them even when it didn't come easily. Now that I have practiced that so much, like any skill, it has become ingrained and it is the only way I am able to think. It is extremely difficult for me to feel any negative emotion because my brain has been rewired to always see the positive and be proactive about responding to situations.

If you ever worry, these are all steps that you should consider taking. Think about big moves you can make to eliminate huge chunks of worry. Dedicate days or hours to tying up loose ends and preventing future worry. Make it a constant habit to train your brain to think in ways which will serve you. There will be many challenges in life, and none of them will be made easier if your brain is half on your side and half against you, or worse.

###

Photo is a bat heating himself up on a heating vent in the Budapest Zoo

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Source: Tynan | Life Outside the Box | 23 Feb 2018 | 9:39 am

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The Giggle Factory: Superfly 2 Preview And Predictions

If you’re a fan of alliterative metaphors relating to body size and/or learning every conceivable variation of the word “diminutive,” HBO has got a treat for you this weekend. Jim Lampley’s synonym game is rivaled only by his crying-at-everyday-occurrences game and you can bet both will be on display this Saturday at The Forum in Inglewood, California. Oh, and there will also be some really tiny men punching each other if you’re into that sort of thing.

At the top of HBO’s ever-dwindling list of good ideas is their somewhat recent decision to begin prominently featuring the lower weight classes. Prior to the HBO debut of Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez on Mar. 24, 2015, the nether weights had been largely ignored by mainstream cable outlets. Chocolatito’s emergence and ensuing popularity proved to the masses what knowledgeable fans had been screaming for years – some of the best and most exciting fighters in boxing can be found in the anklebiter weight classes.

The resistance to the moppet divisions has always been confusing to me. It seems to stem from a perception that smaller men can’t crack, which simply shows a fundamental lack of understanding toward punching power, boxing and, well, the laws of physics themselves. In boxing, power is largely based on relativity. It’s why weight classes exist in the first place. A welterweight has significantly more power relative to a flyweight. However, if a heavyweight moves in on that same welterweight’s wife, he may end up raising a family of large, biracial children. Just ask Amir Khan.

A 115 pound man may not sound scary to a fat bastard like yourself, but to another 115 pound man it’s full speed combat fought at the highest skill level. Good fights are good fights, regardless of weight, but we happen to be smack-dab in the middle of a tadpole weight golden age. Let’s take a look at the halflings Superfly 2 has in store for us this Saturday night.

Srisaket Sor Rungvisai vs Juan Francisco Estrada

Beating the best pound for pound fighter alive will get you into into the fighter of the year conversation pretty quick. Beating him twice in the same calendar year ends that conversation even quicker. Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (44-4-1, 40 KO) defeated the aforementioned Chocolatito Gonzalez (46-2, 38 KO) by somewhat controversial majority decision in March of 2017. Their rematch last September headlined HBO’s inaugural Superfly card and Srisaket’s crushing fourth round knockout of Gonzalez proved his victory in their first match was no fluke.

Whether Chocolatito was shot or Srisaket just has his number is irrelevant. His sensational knockout of the Nicaraguan legend marked the beginning of Srisaket Sor Rungvisai as must-see-TV. His combination of speed, power, and frightening killer instinct are as fan friendly as they come. On Saturday he’ll be putting his potent skill set on display against the equally equipped Juan Francisco Estrada of Sonora, Mexico.

Estrada (36-2, 25 KO) earned his shot at Srisaket by eking out a razor thin unanimous decision over tough with a capital “T” Carlos Cuadras (36-2-1, 27 KO) on the first Superfly card on Sep. 9, 2017. Cuadras gave Estrada all he could handle in the first half of the fight, switch hitting and doing damage on the outside. Estrada eventually closed the gap and even put Cuadras down with a short right hand in the 10th round en route to a 114-113 victory across the board. He showed remarkable poise and patience in clawing his way back into the fight. He’ll need every ounce of that resolve to weather the onslaught of Srisaket Sor Rungvisai. For his part, Srisaket will need to come with a plan A, B and C as Estrada is adept at adjusting his fight plan to his opponent’s and making changes on the fly. On paper, this is as good as it gets. Highly skilled veterans with power, speed and a whole lot to prove.

Prediction: Estrada banks the early quarter of the fight as Srisaket lies in wait. Once he turns up his attack Estrada doesn’t have the guns to keep him off and ultimately Srisaket earns a late round stoppage in a back and forth fight.

 

Carlos Cuadras vs McWilliams Arroyo

You could drape two department store mannequins in Mexican and Puerto Rican flags respectively, and a fight is still going to break out between them. Of the fiercest rivalries in boxing, Mexico vs Puerto Rico is up there with Tyson Fury vs his FitBit, and Chris Algieri vs his parents on laundry day. Yeah, it’s that intense. In this particular instance it pits Cuadras of Sinaloa, Mexico against McWilliams Arroyo (16-3, 14 KO) of Ceiba, Puerto Rico.

As we mentioned, Cuadras is coming off a loss to Juan Francisco Estrada last September on the first Superfly card and to Chocolatito a year prior. Both were close, respectable losses that should do nothing to diminish his standing in the eyes of the boxing world. Cuadras is that rare type of fighter who has the look, style and attitude to become a star, regardless of the number in his loss column.

Apart from sounding like a discarded Quentin Tarantino character, McWilliams Arroyo will be no walk in the park for Cuadras. His record may not be eye-popping but two of his three losses came against lunatic Thai fighter Amnat Ruenroeng (18-2, 6KO) and most recently against Chocolatito in March of 2016, back when simply going the distance with him was a badge of honor in itself. What he lacks in a shiny win/loss ratio he makes up for in amateur experience and punching power, with only two of his sixteen victims hearing the final bell.

Though Arroyo has earned his right to be here with a nice run through the Lilliputian ranks, it would be quite a misstep here for Cuadras to come up short.

Prediction: Cuadras starts fast and never lets up. Nervous energy and over-excitement lead to a few scary moments as Arroyo gets his shots in but it isn’t enough. By the late rounds Cuadras is showboating and walks home with a wide unanimous victory.

 

Donnie Nietes vs. Juan Carlos Reveco

For a guy most people outside of hardcore boxing circles have never heard of, Donnie Nietes has done some shit. His only defeat in 45 professional fights came in 2004 to Angky Angkotta who weighed in at 114 lbs for a light flyweight fight, six pounds over the limit. To put that in perspective, that’s 5.5% of his body weight. A cruiserweight coming in that heavy would be carrying an extra 11.1 lbs on him, or approximately one of Chris Arreola’s stool samples. As long as we have our calculators out let’s crunch some more numbers. 2004 was almost 14 years ago. In that time Nietes joined Manny Pacquiao and Nonito Donaire as the only three-time Filipino belt holders as well as surpassing Flash Elorde as The Philippines’ longest reigning title holder. Know what else he did in those 14 years? Age to 35 years old, which basically makes him a senior citizen in the pigmy weight classes. Though coming off a UD of Komgrich Nantapech last April, Nietes is at the point of his career where father time can Kool-Aid Man his way through the wall at any moment. If that happens on Saturday night, Juan Carlos Reveco will be there to soak him up. (Segue of the year and it’s only February)

Reveco (39-3, 19 KO)  of Argentina is also coming off a unanimous decision of Komgrich Nantapech last September with a slightly wider margin of victory on the scorecards than Nietes. So in a world where all fighter comparisons are done by who did better against god damn Komgrich Nantapech I guess you’d have to give the upper hand to Reveco. Unfortunately Komgrich Nantapech won’t be in the ring on Saturday night so they’ll have to settle this the old fashioned way by fighting each other. Time could catch up with either one as they’ll be a combined age of 69 (nice) on fight night. They also have a combined 89 fights, 620 rounds, and a nearly identical knockout ratio hovering around 47% so a tactical 12 round fight is likely in order here.

Prediction: Nietes keeps his hands to himself for as long as he can while he figures out what he’s up against. Reveco is forced to take chances and in turn creates opening for Nietes. It may not be exciting but Nietes walks away with the close decision.

 

The glory of the dwarf weights will be on full display this Saturday and you’d be wise to tune in. Superfly 1 more than lived up to the hype and this one should be no different. It’s high time the masses learned the lesson we all did back in Ricardo Lopez’s prime: If you smell cabbage, don’t run away. Just look down. There’s likely to be a damn good fight happening down there.

The post The Giggle Factory: Superfly 2 Preview And Predictions appeared first on Queensberry Rules.

Source: Bloguin.com Blogs | 23 Feb 2018 | 7:01 am

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The older I get the more I’ve settled into knowing that what we...

The older I get the more I’ve settled into knowing that what we create isn’t who we are. Vulnerability will be my life time struggle, it just doesn’t come easy for a fella like me. But I know everyday I show up and become present with my friends it points towards something better.

Man I sure did miss this pretty girl. Glad to hang my hat in this honky tonk town.

Source: MADDIE THE COONHOUND | 22 Feb 2018 | 9:21 am

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The Cultural Roots of a Gun-Massacre Society

Previously in this series:

Here are some readers with extra elements on this discussion—political, cultural, international. First, an American reader on the interaction of current concepts of masculinity and the nearly all-male population of mass gun murderers:

There are obviously many components to the gun and mental illness issues but one thread that never seems to be acknowledged: America is going through a crisis of masculinity brought on by structural changes in our economy.

Jobs, if men possess them, no longer provide routes to self-esteem for working class men and so, with the help of the NRA, guns have become a talisman for a potency and meaning that has evaporated in the marketplace.

Take a moment to look at the gun magazines at your local WalMart and register the themes that are hammered home. Constant references not to hunting but to warfare, and the trappings of masculinity, the humorless insistence on the tacticality of every day objects, including, I kid you not, a spork with a hidden knife. These industries are preying on the needs of men to feel like they have a job, bigger than themselves, a protector of the fatherland, the constitution.

When I look at [the Las Vegas mass murderer] I see a man who gave himself a job. He worked out all the details as though he were a character in his own mission impossible. He moved from stage to stage with the precision of an engineer. He embraced this culture of death that is fed to men as a surrogate for that which was available for all too short a time in this culture: the ability to take care of a family on one salary.

Read On »

Source: James Fallows | The Atlantic | 21 Feb 2018 | 11:45 pm

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Follow up
First up… Secondly, it’s weird how many of you asked for a “Long-distance diarrhea sorcerer” t-shirt.  Mainly because I’m not sure how it doesn’t already exist.  But it does now. Third, I’m going to Book People this weekend to sign … Continue reading

Source: The Bloggess | 21 Feb 2018 | 4:43 pm

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Rupture IPA is brewed by @odellbrewing in Colorado. The can...

Rupture IPA is brewed by @odellbrewing in Colorado. The can design is inspired by the machine that grinds up the whole hops to “rupture” the lupulin, giving this beer a really hop forward and bright citrusy flavor. • • • #Beerlabelsinmotion #blim #instabeer #brewstagram #craftbeer #beerlabel #beergeek #ilovebeer #beerporn #aftereffects #odell #rupture #IPA #colorado #odellbrewing

Source: Beer Labels in Motion | 20 Feb 2018 | 6:01 pm

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Why That Amount?

In one of my (many) posts about optimizing, someone made a comment to the effect of, "What's the point of optimizing everything? Eventually you'll optimize your entire life away and have nothing left to do." That reminded me of what people say when they hear that I'm being cryogenically frozen when I die. Very often they say that they wouldn't want to live forever.

It is very peculiar to me that people would ever want to die, but that's another topic. Even stranger to me is that people somehow believe that the exact right time to die is when they are going to die anyway. Good genes and healthy living, dying at age 95? Perfect. Cancer at 65? Also perfect.

If you would not end your life earlier, and would likely get medical treatment to extend it to a "normal" life expectancy, why would you not also live forever, or at least until you voluntarily died at age 500?

(I should say here that I believe there is only a 5% chance I will actually be preserved and resurrected in the future, so you can save the comments about why it won't work)

The same is true of optimizing. Would you intentionally add hassles to your life to slow you down? If not, do you find it peculiar that your life has exactly the correct amount of hassle in it?

It seems that most people assume defaults are correct for them. I always assume the exact opposite. That's not to say that I don't eventually find that some defaults are correct for me. But usually I find that the reasons a default exists are not consistent with what matters to me. For example, some people say that they'll be bored when they're old or they'll be too sad that everyone they know has died. I am never bored and can't imagine the joy of spending time with those still alive will ever be eclipsed by the sadness of losing people.

It's important to challenge our beliefs constantly. The defaults that society assumes for you are the low hanging fruit. If you're not questioning all of those, then will you ever question the harder things like : Should I quit doing this thing that I really like? Do I need to reinvent myself or part of my life? How have I changed, and how should that change my daily life?

###

Photo is a crazy act from Mystere in Vegas. It's one of my favorite Cirque du Soleil shows.

Short post today because I'm trying hard to get my next book finished. Way overdue by my own standards.

>> Comment on this Post · Like this Post

Source: Tynan | Life Outside the Box | 16 Feb 2018 | 1:49 pm

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Big Planes On Short Routes? What a Concept.

February 15, 2018

IT’S WEIRD, when you think about it. More people are flying than ever before, but they’re doing so in smaller and smaller planes. In the United States, the average commercial jet holds about a third fewer passengers than it did thirty years ago.

When I was a kid, widebody planes were the norm on many domestic flights. Coast-to-coast trips were always on DC-10s, L-1011s or 747s. Even on shorter trips, 250 or 300-seaters were common. I grew up in Boston (where I live still), and American Airlines flew DC-10s between here and Chicago, Los Angeles, and Bermuda; Eastern used L-1011s to Orlando; Delta L-1011s would take you to Bermuda, Atlanta, and Miami. Northwest used DC-10s between Boston and Minneapolis, Detroit, and at one point Washington, D.C. The first Airbus, the A300, was a widebody plane designed specifically for short and medium-haul routes. Eastern operated the A300 on its famous Shuttle between Boston, New York and Washington: a 250-seater on a half-hour flight.

Nowadays, on pretty much all of these routes, you’ll find yourself on a much smaller A319, A320, or in many cases a regional jet. The Boeing 737, a plane conceived in the 1960s for flights of around 300 miles, is used on routes to Hawaii, South America, and even to Europe.

Big plane, small route. An Eastern A300 in the early 1980s.

What’s happened is three things. First, aircraft and engine technology has advanced to the point where smaller jets with limited capacity can be profitable even on long segments. And many of these planes are operated by low-paying regional carriers, to whom the airlines have outsourced much of their domestic flying. Second, the U.S. airline industry has fragmented. There are more airlines flying between more cities. Probably the biggest factor, though, is the way airlines have come to use frequency as a selling point. In a lot of ways, frequency of flights has become the holy grail of airline marketing. Why offer three daily nonstops to LAX using 300-seat planes, when you can offer six flights using 150-seat planes? And so here we are: there are city-pairs all across America connected by a dozen, fifteen, or even twenty flights a day — all in narrow-body jets carrying fewer than 200 people.

One obvious downside to this evolution (devolution is maybe the better word), is a decrease in cabin comfort. An overbooked 737 starts to feel very claustrophobic after that third or fourth hour. But worse, it’s clogged up our airspace and airports. Sure, there are more flights to more cities. There also are more delays.

At no time is the peril of this strategy more exposed than when the weather goes bad. In years past, snow or thunderstorms meant moderate delays and perhaps a cancellation or two. When I flew regional planes in the early 1990s, I remember trudging to work through six inches of fresh snow, and departing on time. These days, a half inch of powder or a line of cumulonimbus brings the entire system to its knees. This is especially so in the northeastern United States, a.k.a. the “Northeast Corridor,” which is so packed with planes that delays are common even on clear days. There’s no slack, no logistical breathing room. Add a little rain, ice or snow, and everything snaps. One day last winter, it took me ten hours to fly from Boston to New York — nine of them spent either waiting in the terminal, as flights were cancelled and departure times progressively rolled back, or sitting in endless de-icing and taxiway queues.

Five of the country’s seven most delay-prone airports are in the Northeast, and three of these (LGA, BOS and DCA) have among the highest concentrations of regional jets.

Airlines don’t sell frequency so much as they sell the promise, or the illusion of it. Under optimum circumstances, it works for both the industry and its customers. But when the weather doesn’t cooperate, it can be a disaster. The question for the consumer is this: would you prefer ten flights a day that might arrive on time, or five flights a day that will arrive on time?

Once upon a time: DC-10s at La Guardia Airport.

We hear a lot about the need to upgrade and modernize our air travel control system. Indeed we should. But although this will help the problem, it’s not going to solve it. This isn’t merely airspace issue; it’s just as much an airports issue. At the end of the proverbial day, there are only so many planes that can take off or land on a runway in a given amount of time, and when the weather closes in that number shrinks. Short of building new runway, or whole new airports, the only real solution is for airlines to better rationalize their schedules and capacity models.

And things might be, if only grudgingly for now, trending that way. Carriers are starting to wean themselves away from their berserk obsession with regional jets, and are at least paying lip service to the idea of decreasing frequencies and increasing aircraft size. Several times in the past month, stories like this one have popped into the news.

Frankly, they have little choice. We’re at a breaking point, and a strategy of flooding the skies with more and more small jets is simply unsustainable.

We could follow the example, maybe, of airlines overseas. Widebodies like the 777 and A330 remain very common on short-haul flights within Asia, while Emirates flies many of its A380s on high-density routes around the Middle East.

 

FOLLOW-UP:

Several people have written in voicing their support for high-speed rail as a means of reducing delays. “Here in California,” says one reader, “Completion of the proposed high-speed rail link between Los Angeles and San Francisco would help cut air traffic congestion at both LAX and SFO.” Better investment in rail is perhaps a good idea, but not for this reason. It is unlikely to have any measurable effect on air traffic. Airlines would likely respond not by cutting flights, but by further reducing aircraft size.

Here in the Northeast, in 2000, Amtrak introduced its “Acela Express,” a quasi high-speed service connecting Boston, New York, and Washington. It quickly became popular with students, businesspeople, and tourists. Yet eighteen years later the number of flights between those same cities is relatively unchanged. Shuttle flights still depart every hour, just as they always have, The only difference is, the planes are smaller. In addition, you now have far more flights to JFK and Newark: JetBlue, Delta, American and United all have multiple daily departures. In 1990 there might have been a half dozen daily flights from BOS to JFK or EWR. Today there are probably twenty.

And remember, too, that a substantial percentage of passengers are connecting at these airports. People flying into JFK, for instance — or SFO or LAX — are often continuing onward to Europe, Asia, or elsewhere.

Source: AskThePilot.com | 15 Feb 2018 | 1:47 pm

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Madewell x AsEver!
My dear friends behind the amazing indie fashion label AsEver have done a beautiful collaboration with Madewell, It launched today - grab these must-have, comfy, cool jumpsuits before they're gone!

Source: What My Daughter Wore | 13 Feb 2018 | 10:36 pm

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Leaving this silly creature later on today for 2 weeks to head...

Leaving this silly creature later on today for 2 weeks to head over to the UK to shoot a project ✨ I’ve actually never been to Europe so I’m really looking forward to it.

If you happen to own a Land Rover (that’s running, lolz) drop me a line! I’d fancy getting stuck in the English country side

Source: MADDIE THE COONHOUND | 9 Feb 2018 | 9:59 am

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Chile, not Chili
I'm off to Chile for a fortnight's holiday. The main thing about Chile, etymologically speaking, is that it is not the origin of the word chili meaning spicy stuff in food. That word comes from the Aztecs who lived all the way up in Mexico. Oddly enough, our standard word for the Aztec equivalent of beer - pulque - is from a language spoken in what's now Chile: Araucanian to be precise. This language also gave us gaucho, meaning wanderer, and poncho, meaning woolen cloth.So where does the name Chile come from? Nobody is very certain. But one theory is that it comes from a lost native language and means cold place or land's end. In which case it would be appropriate as the tip of Chile - Tierra del Fuego, or land of fire - is very cold even now, in their midsummer.Santiago, though, is rather warm, which is why I'm going.For more information about words of Chilean origin have a look at this old post about mamihlapinatapai.
The hotel was not as described

Source: Inky Fool | 8 Feb 2018 | 10:38 am

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Dear Airlines: Please Don’t Take Away Our Video Screens!

Korean Air seat-back video.   Author’s photo.

January 9, 2018

FOR TWO DECADES NOW, seat-back video has been the standard for inflight entertainment. Passengers the world over have grown accustomed to watching movies and shows on the screen in front of them. As well they should; it’s a fantastic amenity. I’ll go so far as to say that it’s the single greatest advent in onboard service in the past fifty years. Onboard comfort is all about the art of distraction, and nothing is a better distraction than being able to binge-watch your favorite TV series or catch a few films.

We’ve come a long way. Flyers of a certain age will remember “the in flight movie,” projected onto a scratched-up bulkhead screen. For the sound, you’d plug a bulky, stethoscope-style headset into the armrest. The picture was always blurry and the audio sounded like it was being transmitted from a submarine. Which usually was fine, because they rarely showed anything you wanted to watch in the first place. Today, passengers can choose between dozens or even hundreds of on-demand options. You can start, stop, pause, rewind…. In first or business class, with oversized screens and noise-reduction headsets, you essentially have your own personal theater. Indeed, one of my favorite guilty pleasures in life is sitting in an airline seat with a meal and a glass of wine, watching something fun on my screen.

Yet the days of the seat-back screen might be numbered. One of the big airline stories making the rounds of late describes how carriers are planning to do away with them. The future of inflight entertainment, we are told, is turning instead to wi-fi streaming, whereby passengers can stream shows and movies directly onto their own laptops, tablets or mobile phones.

Emirates first class suite.   Author’s photo.

And, we keep hearing, this isn’t just something the airlines want. Supposedly it’s what their customers want as well. People find the seat-back screens old-fashioned, or uncool — or something. They want streaming video instead.

I’m not buying it. Carriers might wish this were the case, but count me among those who don’t believe it. I suspect the media is simply repeating unchecked what airlines are telling them. I don’t believe it because it doesn’t make sense: With a seat-back screen, you plug in your earphones and go. There are no power issues, no extra cords or wires, and the space in front of you is kept clear for eating, drinking, or whatever. Watching with your own device is a lot more cumbersome. There are the sign-on and streaming settings to configure, for starters. Then, once you’re watching, you’ve got battery drain to deal with, and/or you’ll need to hook a power cord into an AC outlet, provided your seat has one. Also, tablet and smartphone screens are often smaller than the seat-back kind. And, if you’re in economy class, you’ll be using up pretty all of the available tray-table space, making it impossible to enjoy a meal while you’re watching.

Not to mention the recline hazard: Any time you’ve got your laptop propped on your tray, you run the risk of it being crushed when the person in front of you comes hauling back without warning, jamming the screen between the tray and the seat-back (see photo below).

Sure, in-seat systems are heavy and expensive — upwards of $10,000 per seat. But all airplane components are expensive, and the typical screen, over the course of its lifespan, will have entertained thousands of passengers. They’re reliable, convenient, and just so downright useful.

And I haven’t mentioned the moving map displays, the exterior camera views, etc., that are strangely fun to watch.

Hazardous viewing on China Airlines.   Author’s photo.

Now, I have to confess, I sometimes switch off my screen and watch something pre-downloaded on my Macbook instead. I don’t like doing this, for the reasons I just listed, but once in a while there just isn’t anything in the carrier’s library that I want to see. Thus the big caveat in my argument is that an airline needs a decent IFE system to begin with — one that’s easy to navigate, has a wide-enough variety to pick from, and has the hardware (i.e. a big enough screen) to go with it. To that last point, the tiny four or five-inch screens that some airlines have stuck with simply don’t do the trick.

There’s a lot of variation here. My sampling is by no means comprehensive, but I’ve flown a good number of carriers and I have my favorites:

For sheer volume, from blockbusters to Bollywood to documentaries to pop music, nothing comes close to Emirates’ “ICE” system (the letters stand for information, communications, and entertainment). Rest assured you’ll find something to watch or listen to, and the screens in all cabins are huge. The trouble with the Emirates system, however, is that it’s maybe too big for its own good. The ICE guide — a booklet in your seat pocket — is thicker than a novel and confusingly organized; sifting through it all — there are thousands of channels, including many Chinese, Arabic, Hindi and Urdu movies that seem a bit superfluous — can be taxing.

Other airlines have lots to pick from but a clunky user interface. Qatar Airways’ IFE, for example, is appallingly tedious to navigate. Still others have decent usability but limited choices.

My vote for the best all-around system? Delta Air Lines. Theirs is a Panasonic-based platform that is both user-friendly and packed with movies and shows. The layout and navigation functions are the cleanest and most intuitive I’ve seen, and there’s a more than ample, eclectic selection of films and shows. (The one catch is that when clicking into either the TV or movie sections, the default screen shows only the newest additions. Look for the drop-down menu that allows you to access the entire “A-to-Z” archive.) Over the past few years I’ve flown with Emirates, Qatar, Singapore, Cathay Pacific, Korean Air, Thai, and a dozen or so others. Delta’s system beats all of them.

I should note that Delta also has an onboard streaming option called “Delta Studio,” offering much of the same content, at no cost. If that’s your thing, have at it. I’ll keep watching it seat-back style.

Whichever airline we’re talking about, the idea of fumbling around with a computer or an iPad, with wires all over the place and all my personal space taken up, is not a welcome change.

Moving map on Delta’s outstanding IFE.   Author’s photo.

 

Update: January 12, 2018

Based on the comments section, my opinions on this matter seem to be in the minority. But I’m not backing down.

I was on a long-haul overnight flight just yesterday. After takeoff, as the cabin crew prepared to come around with the meal service, I turned on my screen, plugged in the noise reduction headset, adjusted the channels and volume with the hand-set, and settled in. A few minutes later I had my soup, my appetizers, and my meal there in front of me while I watched five straight John Oliver episodes that I hadn’t seen before. It was all just perfect.

Then I imagined, instead, trying to have this same experience using my own device. The thought of having to futz around with my computer made me anxious just thinking about it. Not to mention, it would have been impossible in the first place, because, even in business class, there is simply not enough room. I could enjoy my shows or I could enjoy my meal, but not both. Right away you’ve sucked away a huge amount of the pleasure — the whole point of sitting in a premium cabin and savoring the luxury of it.

And why should the onus be on the passenger to worry about battery charging, lugging around wireless headphones, and so on, when for two decades the airlines have been supplying the hardware? And what of the millions of people who don’t have tablets or laptops, and/or who resent having to carry them onto a plane in order to enjoy something that heretofore was already there and hard-wired in? I’m still not getting this. Why would a passenger choose to voluntarily make the inflight entertainment experience more cumbersome and more of a pain in the ass?

Source: AskThePilot.com | 9 Jan 2018 | 5:22 pm

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My best liked posts from 2017. Thank you everyone for a great...

My best liked posts from 2017. Thank you everyone for a great year! Here’s to plenty more animations in 2018! 🍻

@sierranevada @brownsbrewingco @butternutsbeer @rarbrew @sevenstills @warhorsebrewing @breweryommegang

• • • #Beerlabelsinmotion #blim #instabeer #brewstagram #craftbeer #beerlabel #beergeek #ilovebeer #beerporn #aftereffects #2017bestnine #best2017 #sierranevada #brownsbrewingco #butternutsbeer #rarbrew #sevenstills #warhorsebrewing #breweryommegang

Source: Beer Labels in Motion | 31 Dec 2017 | 2:07 pm

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Losing your Rag in Rag Week in America
Image result for postman patI've been going through A Short History of Drunkenness for the American edition, changing those words and phrases that would be incomprehensible on the farther shores of the Atlantic. It's a process that I find utterly fascinating.Some of the phrases are expected: "Does exactly what it says on the tin" comes from a British advertising campaign of the 1990s. I was surprised that rumpy-pumpy doesn't exist in America, but it was easily replaced with hanky-panky. But I became particularly curious about "lost his rag". This phrase not only doesn't exist in America, but I didn't really know why it existed in Britain.The phrase is first recorded in 1928:Finally, losing his rag completely, he extended his fingers to his nose and challenged any three men in the audience to come up on the platform and fight him.This goes back to an old Yorkshire term "to get somebody's rag out", and that in turn appears to go back to the use of rag to mean tease, torment, scold etc. That's the same rag that you have in Rag-Week at University: the first week when everybody chases each other around rather boisterously. And it's also the origin of the American phrase to rag on sombody as in this line from 1979:Critics all over the country..for years and years have been ragging on Joyce Carol Oates.So Americans, it turns out, can be ragged on, but their rag cannot be gotten out, and nor can it ever be lost; they're just too good tempered.The other problematic differences were the absence of Postman Pat on those distant shores (the British version points out that a Sumerian drinking song can be sung to the theme music), and finding a precise American equivalent of Maidstone.Anyhow, A Short History of Drunkenness is already available in Britain, indeed the Spectator says that:My favourite book of this and possibly any other Christmas is Mark Forsyth's A Short History of DrunkennessAnd as it would make the perfect present for just about anybody, it should immediately be bought from a bookshop or one of these people:AmazonBlackwellsBook DepositoryWaterstonesAnd for all who don't know or remember here is the original Ronseal advertisement that changed our language, followed by the original Postman Pat theme.(American readers should note that the majority of British English is now based on this one advertisement)

Source: Inky Fool | 19 Dec 2017 | 7:52 am

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Tuesday Morning

Getting ready to get on big metal flying thing and go to isle of Manhattan. Smoke on your pipe and put that in.

But it's hard to think about that and to not think about, in alphabetical order: Las Vegas and Puerto Rico. My sympathies and shock are kinda bouncing back between the two of them, appalled that we don't do more to prevent what happened in the former and to help with what's happened to the latter. I sent money to Operation USA, which is about all I can think to do to aid Puerto Rico. I mean, it's not like I'm the head of a government who could care a lot more about those people down there.

About gun control? That's long seemed hopeless to me. I do have friends who own enough firearms to qualify as Gun Owners in anyone's eyes. Not a one of them believes people should be allowed to own the kind of gun you can take up to the 32nd floor of a hotel and use to kill 59 people, injure 527 others and leave countless others in shock. Any one of them could probably write a batch of laws that would cut down on massacres while still preserving the rights of responsible hunters and those who need a weapon for protection. But they're not driving this bus and I'm skeptical that those kinds of folks ever will, not even after the next "Greatest Massacre in U.S. History" or the one after that or the one after that or the one after that…

I do like what Seth Meyers said in the video I embedded last night. Maybe it's time to get politicians to at least self-identify where they stand. Get each one on the record answering questions like, "Would you be willing to support laws that would have prevented Stephen Paddock from obtaining the weapons he had in that hotel room?" And then we have to wait for the day when it would cause more candidates to lose elections if they said "No."

Gotta go pack. Posting will be sporadic here for the next week but it will include reports on the New York Comic-Con and various shows on or slightly off-Broadway.

The post Tuesday Morning appeared first on News From ME.

Source: News From ME | 3 Oct 2017 | 11:04 am

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Great Shakes!

I start most days with a chocolate protein shake made with Jay Robb Whey Protein.  It's the only chocolate thing I ingest since I (largely) gave up sugar about ten years ago.  Jay Robb products are free of sugar and also of artificial sweeteners, which neither I nor my body like.  They make 'em with Stevia and it's a pretty nice, protein-rich drink especially if you make yours with real cold water.  For a time, I also put in a splash of milk but I stopped doing that.

They have a couple of flavors but I like the chocolate way more than the others.  Recently though, I came across a product at the market that I'd never seen before — Jif Peanut Powder.  I tried adding a teaspoon of it to my Jay Robb chocolate shake and in addition to upping the protein count, I got a pretty good peanut butter flavor drink.

I was expecting something not unlike a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup — a mix of chocolate and peanut butter — but it doesn't work like that. No matter how little peanut powder I put in, the result tastes like peanut butter with almost no trace of chocolate. That is not a bad thing though. You might want to try Jay Robb Whey Protein, with or without the peanut powder.

The post Great Shakes! appeared first on News From ME.

Source: News From ME | 3 Oct 2017 | 3:50 am

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Commuting to Timbuktu
For a continuation of my adventures please go to my new blog here.

Source: djenne djenno | 20 Jul 2017 | 7:23 am

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The Last Time
Sometimes we are not aware when something happens for the last time. Circumstances change without our intervention; we take leave of someone quite casually and we don’t know that we will never see them again;  decisions are made over which we have no power which have  sudden and deep consequences in  our lives. But a few times  only  there is a conscious choice to end something of major importance.  Last night when I was sitting with my sunset cocktail over- looking the mosque, I knew that this daily ritual was happening for the very last time. I was regaled with a blue cloudless sky and a clear  sunset and I hung on to the very last dying ember of light as it descended on the horizon to the right of the Great Mosque. Then I had dinner on the roof alone under a clear bejewelled Malian sky.
The night before was the final party: a ‘family affair’ for those that have served at the hotel: a lovely evening complete  with Diao, our faithful Fulani  milkman who arrived  with his son; our griots came and sang mine and Keita’s praises.
They  sang of those that have gone, of Beigna and Pudiogou and of Fatou, but also of Papa, Baba and Maman, and of course of the lovely Elisabet, my film-making cousin.  
We feasted on the goat that we bought in Madiama market a few days ago, and Papa was respendent in his white hatted chef outfit.
For days the contents of the hotel have been quietly leaving.  Mattress by mattress, air conditioner by air conditioner, the hotel has trickled away until it stood quite bare, and only Maman, Baba and Papa were left this morning, dividing the last spoils between themselves. There has been a change of state: this hotel which I created no longer exists.
December 12, 2006:“Tomorrow it will be just a week before Hotel Djenné Djenno is officially open. In two weeks time my Christmas guests will already be leaving. But today the site was still just as usual, full of workmen, and full of wheel barrows and mud. But the clearing up has begun. Something major is about to happen- a change of state.In just over a week I will no longer be building a hotel, it will actually exist, and I will be running a hotel. My reality is about to change. Today I looked at all the space of the hotel which is about to be born. I thought of all the unknown things which will happen in this space, and which are now resting here like embryos. It is all about to begin to unfold. I thought of all the people who will one day come here, and laugh, have fun and make love here, although today they don’t even know it. And yet, by some mysterious workings they will come here ...So Maestro, soon soon, let the play begin..”And it did, and the players were many. And last night they all finally left the stage, sweeping the floor with their feathered  hats as they took  their final bow...
 
 ( this is the last message from Djenne Djenno. There will be more about other places and other adventures, inshallah.   Should you wish to follow me there, please look in here now and then. You will be directed to another blog  soon.  Thank you to all you who have looked in over these 11 years and followed my life and adventures in Djenné. It has been, so far, the best years of my life.)

Source: djenne djenno | 2 Jul 2017 | 6:04 am

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everythingthatgoespop: Breaking News: George and Amal Clooney...

everythingthatgoespop:

Breaking News:

George and Amal Clooney are expecting twins!❤👶🏻

2017 taketh away (civil liberties), but 2017 also giveth (celebrity twins).

(Just popping back in to say AAAAAAAAAAAMAL. And BEYONCE.) 

Source: Suri's Burn Book | 9 Feb 2017 | 4:02 pm

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After Nine Years and 2,810 Posts, a Dot Earth Farewell
After nine years and 2,810 posts, a blog seeking a sustainable path for humans on a finite planet comes to an end.

Source: Dot Earth | 5 Dec 2016 | 7:07 am

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Facing Standing Rock Campaign, Obama Administration Blocks Dakota Pipeline Path
Intensifying Indian protests prompted the Obama administration to block a pipeline's path in North Dakota.

Source: Dot Earth | 4 Dec 2016 | 6:38 pm

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Seriously, though. If I go away, who’s going to tell Blue Ivy...

Seriously, though. If I go away, who’s going to tell Blue Ivy that she DOESN’T NEED TO HANG OUT WITH APPLE MARTIN JUST TO BE NICE? Because come on. You are better than that.

Source: Suri's Burn Book | 24 May 2016 | 5:00 pm

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999 Posts + The Big Blog Re-Design
This marks the 999th time I have opened my blogger account and started typing into this blank, white box. Not every post made it live, but the official file number is 999. I cannot fathom how that's possible, but I have never been prouder.This project started as a place to share what I was experiencing as a confused post-grad in a big, expensive city (again, because my friend Matt made me do it). I didn't have an ulterior motive; I just needed somewhere to write. And then somehow it became the catalyst for almost every major change in my life from that point - truly. I can track everything from my first script and first literary manager to my move to Los Angeles and my husband to this blog. Today it continues to fuel my creativity and serve as a place that I always return to find my voice as a writer. I owe everything to this little space on the world wide web.And so I thought I'd give the blog a little 1,000th post congrats gift - a full and complete re-design.It's way past time to take 20/30-Nothings into the 21st century. New logo. New look. Far better functionality, readability, and shareability (this is a word?). I'll also be introducing new features and ways to connect. And, most importantly, there will be really cool colors involved.   I'll be off-line for a week or so until the transformation is complete, but after that it's right back to work. Until then, please enjoy some back-log reading of my personal blog superlatives.And really, truly, THANK YOU. I think that a writer without an audience is technically still a writer, but it's really so nice to have you.   

Source: 20-Nothings | 24 Mar 2015 | 11:18 am

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Meditation For Beginners, Who Are Terrible at Meditation
As I mentioned, I've just started one of Deepak Choprah and Oprah's 21-Day Meditation Challenges. As I failed to mention on purpose, this is the third time...Basically Oprak create this user-friendly, totally guided, 100% free content that is released daily for 21 days. Each installment runs for approximately 20 minutes and includes an intro by Oprah, a lesson by Deepak and timed meditation with really lovely music. There is even an app you can download in case opening the e-mail they send and clicking on a link is too cumbersome - as it apparently was for me, twice.Each 21-Day challenge has a different focus. The first one I tried to do was something about finding the calm in your life, the second I can't remember, and this one is about Manifesting True Success. Bottom line they're all about centering your mind, but the focus is a nice specific angle...so they can keep doing them, I assume, but that's fine. So why do I want to do this? Because it is my understanding that meditation is an incredibly powerful tool for use in calming the hell down, something I could use 20 minutes (or years...) of in my life. Also, I like the idea of starting every day with some thinking, and then some non-thinking. And finally, people who meditate endlessly boast the benefits, and they are almost always people that I like and respect.So how is it going? I'm not sure I know yet. I have found a comfortable place and way to sit, which took three days. I really like Oprah talking to me every morning. Deepak has had some great things to say - like today he said that our body is our greatest ally in life, and if we can be in touch with it and work in union with it, we'll be in far better shape emotionally and physically. I tend to treat my body more like this annoying, evil twin that I have to lug around all day/life, so that was a cool brain shift.But when it comes to the actual meditating, I'm horrible. You're supposed to keep your mind clear and focus on repeating the mantra over and over again, but my mind immediately races to another topic, and then it's minutes until I realize I've been through three more topics and haven't said the mantra silently in my head once. It's frustrating, which is the last thing you want when meditating. That said, it's my understanding based on a Google search that this is very common. Meditation takes year and years of practice, and I have given it 4, 15-minute sessions. This time, I'm hell-bent on getting to 21. I'll provide an update at half of 21 (sorry, don't have a calculator on the ready). Until then, any advice?

Source: 20-Nothings | 19 Mar 2015 | 2:01 pm

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January 26 2015: The first reported US drone strike of the year...

January 26 2015: The first reported US drone strike of the year killed three people travelling in a vehicle in central-southern Yemen. This was the first attack since Houthi insurgents forced the country’s president Abdu Rabbu al Mansour Hadi, his prime minister and cabinet to resign. #drone #drones #yemen (at Hareeb, Shabwa-Mareb border)

Source: Dronestagram | 2 Mar 2015 | 5:34 am

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January 19 2015: CIA drones targeted a house in Shawal area of...

January 19 2015: CIA drones targeted a house in Shawal area of North Waziristan killing five, six or seven people. The identities of the dead was not immediately known however a senior Pakistani official said “non-Pakistani, foreign fighters” were among the dead and Taliban sources said the attack also killed local fighters associated with Taliban commander Hafiz Gul Bahadur. This was the third of four strikes to reportedly target Bahadur himself, or men loyal to him. The Pakistani government condemned the strike as a breach of sovereignty – a reiteration of its official position on the drone attacks. #drone #drones #pakistan (at Shahi Khel, Shawal, North Waziristan)

Source: Dronestagram | 2 Mar 2015 | 5:33 am

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