Thursday, May 20, 2010

Playing with my magnetic balls...

Time for a M.A.Y.A. Years Commercial:

I met my friend Jennifer at Java Shack a little while back and she introduced me to MagneatoSpheres. I know, I know, I should go back to eating paste, but this is worth checking out. They're basically a bunch of small magnetic spheres. They stick together, you pull them apart, you build things. MagneatoSpheres may not hold all the mysteries of the universe, but they do show some of its power. As a 6mm rare Earth
metal, MagneatoSpheres pack a potent punch, yet are easy to play with and
use. These magnets are made of neodymium, iron and boron and are some
of the most powerful magnetic forces on Earth.

Take two spheres and throw them at each other across a flat surface.
They spin like whirling dervishes. Get all existential and create a 3D
sphere out of all the little spheres. Create a magnet mosaic, even
make a necklace and make some lame joke about someone being attracted
to you. Most of all, MagneatoSpheres are meant for fun. Use them for
science classes to teach about how magnets work or offer them as party
gifts at the company party.

For more information, go to They are also
sold on Amazon and other product web sites. And for you visual learners, check out that YouTube video below:

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Middle Aged No Longer...

Well, just like that.

I'm closing out this blog. It'll remain up and please feel free to comment or whatnot, but this is done. If you want to get a decent sense of how I've felt the past few years, this is my public record. More so, I hope this shows a journey, perhaps a digression from one point to another. In my sorta-goofy way in calling myself a Middle Aged Young Adult, I hoped to find some resonance with others and ultimately, with what I felt myself. For that, I have succeeded.

For the first time in a very long time, I am content. I don't always feel content and judging as the end of the year is going to shape up, I might be quite frazzled. No matter. I am content in my decisions; what I decided and how I decided. I am content in my locale, in where I've ended up and how I got here. I am content in the possibilities and the probabilities. I am content with what I know and don't know, what I've learned and have yet to learn and what I have seen and what there is to see.

If peace is the awareness of everything you need to live life well, than I feel quite peaceful. After so much work in terms of education, shifting careers, moving toward the other side of the country, bad breakups, good rejections, lots of self-analysis and lots of silent and loud prayer amongst many a car drives, this is my time to slow down.

Thanks for reading and I'm sure we'll talk more soon.

Monday, September 01, 2008

A Stewart and a Wolfson met in a bar...

In continuing my election coverage, I offer a Daily Show video:

and an article by former Clinton Communications Director Howard Wolfson.

You may return to the "Cindy and Laura" hour at the RNC Convention.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Is there an -ism we are forced to pick?

Sorry for the lull in this blog.

With the selection of Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin as McCain's running mate, it opens up this election to a few interesting narratives.

The interesting part: Do you vote for someone because of race or because of gender? Of course, the acknowledged is that you don't vote because of race or gender or religion or sexual orientation or anything of the identity sort. You vote because of issues and policies and positions.

Yeah, right.

As much as we want to say it, we really don't vote on issues. The reason is simple: what is the issue during the election most likely won't be the issue during the crux of the presidency. For example, does anyone remember what the major issues were in 2000? Bush ran as a compassionate conservative, but what was his main policy planks? Same with Clinton, with Reagan, with anyone else? If anything, you might have to go back to Lincoln to find a presidency that was squarely dealt with the issues raised in a campaign. As the adage goes, presidents don't make history, but rather, history makes presidents.

Plus, while the president has power, presidents don't have all the power. Truthfully, Congress is the strongest branch in government. It's the most representative and democratic in nature and most of the legislative nexus has to originate and flow through both House and Senate. As much as we want universal health care and private social security or this or that, it's starts with laws. Honestly, Congress could enact universal health care, it's the "Medicare for All" act that Rep. Kucinich introduced a while back. It's still pending...

Therefore, what are we looking for in presidents? It depends solely on the times. Some times call for a Kennedy or a Lincoln, leaders that don't have the experience but have the leadership. Other times call for a Truman or an Eisenhower, who climbed the ladder and showed their grit. And, some times call for a forgotten president and sadly, some times call for a Bush.

So, this time is a time for change. The reality is that it's a generational change. Unless past times and past generations, this change is much more profound. Because of the striking difference on how life is viewed and lived and because of how wacky the Baby Boomers are, this difference comes with a completely different way at approaching life and politics. That's why Obama made it this far and honestly, why Gov. Palin just gave McCain his best shot at the Presidency. New age, new time, newer ways of thinking.

But back to the original question: Do you vote on race or gender? In America, racism is the original sin. In humanity, sexism is the ORIGINAL sin. As hokey as this sounds, racism is presented as a more pressing matter in the public consciousness than sexism. That's why the ERA never passed and why we didn't get a woman as the presidential candidate this time around.

However, there will be no racial majority in about 40 years in America. Most people are multi-cultural and multi-racial and there is no doubt we will have our first Latino and Asian president within 25 years. No doubt.

On the other hand, civilization is shifting back to a matriarchal society. There are more women being born than men and that simple fact alone will radically alter society in about five generations, tops. There is a growing crisis among boys in development and education (I think the latest numbers is that 60-65% of college graduates are women and that's increasing) and the blurring of the boundaries of manhood compels more women to fill the gap.

That's somewhat far off, but since Obama has proven himself to be perceived as presidential, his candidacy has open the flood gates. And if the governor can show herself as capable without the necessity to desexualize herself (that's a whole other issue that I'm surely not qualified to talk about), then that is a major, major victory. Maybe even more important than a McCain win.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Allowing all parts of me to catch up...

I'm always amazed at the power of gravity.

What goes up must come down. In this case, the coming down is a giant let down.

When you complete a big task, filled with challenges, obstacles, failures and brick walls, it's exciting and thrilling. A great triumph and a fantastic achievement.
But then comes the depression. The goal is accomplished, the job is done. All the energy now is in limbo, waiting for another channel. That transition is just shitty.

That's where I'm at: I'm coming down from pushing with everything I had. Going against the grain requires a double-time effort. Two thoughts for one, two desires to do something different to one comfort zone. After a while, you're running on pure adrenaline and the faster heartbeat becomes second nature.

But you get up the hill, cross the valley and make it. The top is so pristine and beautiful and yet so jarring. The hardest thing about succeeding is not making it to the top, but staying there. That's why athletes briefly celebrate championships and quickly talk about next year. They have the luxury to run down the mountain and start the trek up again.

I've been looking for the item that I need. I'm in the right grocery store, in the right section and now, I'm in the right aisle and I found it. What next? What's the next item on my list? The satisfaction I felt about my accomplishment is now tempered with WHAT'S LEFT. I've been avoiding that like the plague, but now the air at the top is thin and as I look back and I squint forward, I realize how tired I am, how sad I am of all the roots I clung to as my identity are uprooted (and now further shaken by earthquakes and other acts of God) and how far I really am from home.

I'm slightly ashamed about how I got here. I'm embarrassed when I tell people that I just packed two suitcases, wore my maroon shorts with holes on the airplane and just came. I'm nervous to tell people how I did it, not because it's a feat of greatness, but just simple stick-to-it-ivness. I wish I had the gravitas to tell you about all the arguing I did while driving to and from USC. I knew I was leaving, but over and over and over, the question was asked. "Are you sure?" Can you do this? Do you want to do this? What if you fail? What if you really fail? What will everyone say? What will you tell yourself to keep going? Does God have a death wish against you?

When I finally heard a yes with resonance, it was faint, squeaky, like a 12-year-old going through puberty. It wasn't mature, but it wasn't the same anymore.

Having people say "wow, that's bold" or "you took a leap of faith" re-emphasizes not the strength of my faith or boldness but rather its fragility. As things slow down and routine takes a seat next to you on the Metro, there is a moment of sheer panic. Change is the bridge, not the journey. I have reteach myself to walk with the 9 to 5 and learn to replant. So hard, so hard.

Now I know why most people don't take risks and don't do things that require sacrifice: It's not the risk that's scary, it's the realization that you might succeed.

But I must say, I discovered a superb coffee house in Gettysburg, PA yesterday. Called the Ragged Edge. For that alone, I'm glad the vision came and I followed.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Different leadership

RJ Eskow over at HuffPost wrote a great blog on Obama's leadership style. I think it's so important to change our perceptions on how we view politics. It's us as a general public that are bruised, betrayed, disappointed and cynical about our politics. When something new and better comes around, we have to have the hope to see it.

Here's the money quote:
Obama's been frustrating observers across the political spectrum lately. Progressive bloggers are debating whether he's driven by cynicism or centrism, while the rightwingers at Human Events claim there's a "Secret Plan Behind Obama's Move to the Right!" They're all missing the point. He's not moving to the Right. His political architecture isn't built on the old foundation of Right vs. Left -- or on Right vs. Wrong, for that matter. It isn't even binary. When it comes to policy he inclines toward the progressive position, but he's not thinking in terms of "winning" or "losing." His goal is group unity around the best possible realistic outcome. That means assess the situation, get what you can, then move to bring the parties together around a new consensus.

You read read the entire post here.

Monday, July 07, 2008

A statement for Monday

At what point does one decide to slow down and ease in?

I for one have never known when that point comes and goes. It sometimes seems like I have two gears: fast and bloody faster. I celebrate by going faster, I get through crisis by getting faster and I move forward by finding new things to move faster towards.

That, combined with the curse of journalistic adrenaline and a penchant of always thinking the divine shoe is gonna drop, is why I have never felt I could slow down and ease in.

Whatever that means. I suppose that some day, when I'm a grown up and the gray hair is fully intact and the balding is abated and there is that point where I finally hit the point where I either am convicted/convinced/bribed into settling, I'll wake up each day with a sense of ease.

Until then, I'm offering a blanket apology to my current/former/future co-workers, friends, foes, sweethearts, exes and bankers sick of my phone calls. I'm moving fast. There might be a point where I hit a wall and I'll be forced to finally slow down, but do know that I enjoy every moment, every detail and by taking on a philosophy that everything in life is both a means and an end, my slowing down in one area means I'm going faster in another.

Slowly but surely, I am transitioning out of transitioning. I'll figure it out soon enough, I promise. Until then, bear with me, I'm still slightly antsy and visions of sugarplums are dancing in my head...