Founder Dating And Other Interesting Links
Apr 29 2012

I saw this hit the Bootstrap Austin list a week or so ago: Founder Dating.  If you want to start a company right now but don’t know how to find the right co-founder, then this site might be for you.  I haven’t used it so I can’t personally vouch for its efficacy, but if I did want to start a company right now (which I don’t), I’d certainly check it out.  My main start-up ventures at the moment are my two kids.  I would definitely work for a start-up/fast growing company, but my founder status is tied to my kids for a while.

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Have you ever thought about forming a partnership in your business?  Then you need to read Self-Fueling Partnerships by Bob Barker in a recent Texas CEO magazine edition.  He discusses reasons why to partner and how to do it effectively.  Many partnerships go bad as we’ve seen on the front pages of too many newspapers/websites so take his advice before getting into one.

How To Be Creative in the Wall Street Journal. “The image of the ‘creative type’ is a myth. Jonah Lehrer on why anyone can innovate—and why a hot shower, a cold beer or a trip to your colleague’s desk might be the key to your next big idea.” In the article it says “Steve Jobs famously declared that “creativity is just connecting things.” Although we think of inventors as dreaming up breakthroughs out of thin air, Mr. Jobs was pointing out that even the most far-fetched concepts are usually just new combinations of stuff that already exists.Recent research confirms Mr. Jobs’s wisdom. The sociologist Martin Ruef, for instance, analyzed the social and business relationships of 766 graduates of the Stanford Business School, all of whom had gone on to start their own companies. He found that those entrepreneurs with the most diverse friendships scored three times higher on a metric of innovation. Instead of getting stuck in the rut of conformity, they were able to translate their expansive social circle into profitable new concepts.

Author: | Filed under: entrepreneurship, FYI, steve jobs | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Random Thoughts And Printers
Apr 5 2012

For some reason today was a weird day.  It started out with me dragging myself onto the treadmill at 6:00 a.m.  Then I sorted through a bunch of email and set up some meetings.  I had a good meeting with one of my clients.  I even had a good lunch with a potential client.  Then it got mixed up in a few ways that illustrate the complexity of us humans and machines as follows:

  • I called my insurance agent to discuss car and homeowners premiums. Given I’ve had my car almost 11 years and it has over 135K miles on it, I felt like I was paying way too much.  I was right and I ended up saving hundreds of dollars per year.  I got irritated knowing that if I had called a year ago, I could have saved more money.  I hate wasting money.  So it was a bittersweet sensation.  I hope they are glad that I didn’t call Geico (darn gecko) first!
  • As I was on the phone with the agent, my Epson printer freaked out and stopped printing.   I had the printer 3 1/2 years and it decided to crash today…just as I needed to print and scan back docs to the agent.  It was cheaper to buy a new printer than figure out how to get it to San Antonio to fix it.  Needless to say, I spent a significant portion of what I was about to save on reduced insurance premiums on a new printer.
  • I called the cable company a few months ago and discovered I could spend 1/2 of what I was spending on cable & internet and still get basically the same service.
  • I wonder how much revenue these companies collect because people like me are too busy to call and figure out what the less expensive, still viable options are.  What if it was 20 or 30% of their revenue?!  That means they are relying on our laziness, busy-ness, and stupidity for a significant portion of their revenue.
  • I wonder if someone can invent an app that scans all your bills periodically and lets you know if you made this change or took advantage of this new package, you could save hundreds of dollars.
  • I stopped at Office Depot before and after a happy hour for the Austin Technology Incubator and received $50 credit for my old printer for a trade in on an HP printer that supposedly has more capacity and features.  I’ve already set it up and like the scan-to-email feature.  Thank goodness for auto setup on devices these days!
  • Grey’s Anatomy is a very good TV show.  Mad Men displays sexism and the male dominated advertising firm life in the 60′s very well, but sometimes I can’t follow their conversations easily.
  • Matters of the heart, head, and machine are not so easily resolved no matter how hard we try.  They all seem to result in the sensation of wanting to punch something or someone or cry when you can’t get them to work like they should.
  • How do 9 year old boys play 4 games of soccer in one day without falling over.  We will soon find out.
  • I’m thankful I live in the United States where I can create opportunity where none would usually exist as well as buy a new printer on short notice.  I’m also thankful that I saved for “rainy days” and live in a place that usually has less rain than other places.
  • I’m thankful for good health.

I have so many more thoughts, but most are not very useful to the general public just like half of the above aren’t either, but I hope it results in a few of you saving some money.

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Tillamook Cheese Brings Cheesy Fun To Austin
Apr 3 2012

I just thought this was cheesy fun so I’m sharing the info.  I was trying to see if I could get a group of friends together to meet up at one of the restaurants, but with all of our busy schedules and disparate locations in Austin, it’s proving to be more challenging than I thought.

tillamook® cheese makes austin melt

Local Restaurants Grill Up Tillamook-Themed Sandwiches

Celebrating the Arrival of the Tillamook Loaf Love Tour and National Grilled Cheese Month

WHO:   Tillamook, the 103-year-old, farmer-owned cooperative from Oregon with a reputation as one of the nation’s premier natural cheese makers and 6 partner restaurants in Austin, Texas.

WHAT:     To celebrate the arrival of the Loaf Love Tour, the third annual cross-country mobile sampling tour dedicated to bringing tasty cheese to the people, Tillamook has partnered with a select group of top Austin restaurants to host Tillamook Grilled Cheese Week. Kicking off during National Grilled Cheese Month on April 7th, each restaurant has created a unique grilled cheese featuring Tillamook all-natural cheese slices to honor the sandwich so beloved it has its own month.

Participating restaurants include: Noble Pig Sandwiches serving a Pimento Grilled Cheese made with Tillamook Sharp Cheddar, sweet red peppers, pickled jalapeno and crispy bacon ($8), Max’s Wine Dive serving a Smoked Duck and Tillamook Sharp Cheddar Grilled Cheese with Caramelized Onions and Watercress ($14), Austin Daily Press featuring a Tillamook Black Forest Ham Grilled Cheese made with a blend of Tillamook Sharp Cheddar and Tillamook Monterey Jack cheeses served with Spicy Ranch ($6), J.Black’s Feel Good Lounge, serving an Open-Faced Grilled Cheese BAT with Tillamook Sharp Cheddar and Tillamook Monterey Jack, Niman Ranch Bacon, Local Texas Tomatoes, Arugula, and Lemon Aioli ($8), FoodHeads, grilling up three specials including a Grilled Tillamook Monterey Jack with Turkey, Jalapenos, Cracked Black Pepper, House Slaw & Honey Dijon on Nine Grain ($7.95) and Hopdoddy Burger Bar offering their version of a grilled cheese in the I Love Lucy Burger, a “Hopdoddy style Juicy Lucy” featuring Angus Beef stuffed with Tillamook Sharp Cheddar ($8).

While rolling around Austin from March 30th to April 18th, the Loaf Love Tour will visit grocery stores and special events, educating attendees about Tillamook products while sampling their all-natural cheeses made with the highest-quality milk from cows not treated with artificial growth hormones*.

WHEN:  Saturday, April 7th to Saturday, April 14th 

WHERE:                  Noble Pig Sandwiches, Max’s Wine Dive, Austin Daily Press, FoodHeads, J.Black’s Feel Good Lounge and Hopdoddy Burger Bar

 To see the tour’s full & detailed schedule of stops in Austin, please visit: LoafLoveTour.com

ABOUT TILLAMOOK:     Established in 1909, the Tillamook County Creamery Association (TCCA) pride themselves on their commitment to providing families with the most consistent, best tasting, highest quality dairy products made in the most natural way possible. The farmer-owned cooperative is famously known for its award-winning, naturally aged cheddars and is quickly becoming one of the top dairy brands in the country. Tillamook offers a variety of cheese, ice cream, butter, sour cream and yogurt products. For more information, please visit Tillamook.com 

* The FDA has stated that no significant difference has been shown between milk derived from rBST treated and non-rBST treated cows.

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Generation Flux And Women Leaders
Mar 26 2012

Two very interesting reads.  One by Fast Company on the changing nature of our workforce and a redefining of generation based on the way people view their careers regardless of their age.  The other is by Harvard Business Review on whether women make better leaders.  Here they are:

This Is Generation Flux: Meet The Pioneers Of The New (And Chaotic) Frontier Of BusinessJanelle Monney, an executive coach, told me about this article.  I got both exhilarated and mentally exhausted reading it because I was wondering if I could keep up with this career flux until I’m 80 like some of the folks mentioned in the article.  I think it’s because most of the people mentioned in the article didn’t have two little kids fluxing around them while they were bouncing from project to project! :-) I was introduced to Janelle by Peter Strople, an instant-change agent who knows pretty much everyone worth knowing on this planet.

Are Women Better Leaders than Men?But the women’s advantages were not at all confined to traditionally women’s strengths. In fact at every level, more women were rated by their peers, their bosses, their direct reports, and their other associates as better overall leaders than their male counterparts — and the higher the level, the wider that gap grows” (see charts shown in the article.)

Author: | Filed under: diversity, entrepreneurship, FYI | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Why Every Small Business Should Have Inventory Management Software
Mar 8 2012

Following is a guest post by a writer for Ordoro, a company I used to work with while I was at the Austin Technology Incubator.  When she reached out to me to see if I would accept a guest post, I chuckled and thought what a small world it was.  I like the team at Ordoro.  They are doing great things and making a difference for small businesses.

Carolyn is a guest post writer on the subjects of small business management, small business tools, and inventory control. She believes that the right software is an essential part of what it takes for startups to succeed.

Why Every Small Business Should Have Inventory Management Software

Inventory will hog all of your company’s cash if you allow it to do so. Think about it. You pay your suppliers, and you wait for them to ship goods to you. Then you wait for your employees to turn those goods into finished products you can sell. Once the products are ready to sell, you have to wait for customers to buy them. As you may have noticed, turning inventory into cash involves a lot of waiting. That’s why it’s essential that you do everything you can to increase your inventory turnover rate as much as possible. When it comes to inventory control, one of the most effective tools a small business owner can take advantage of is inventory management software. Here’s what inventory management software can do for your small business:

  • Inventory control software helps you identify what you need to order from suppliers at any given time. This kind of software gives you a clear picture of your inventory levels. If your bestselling product is almost sold out, it’s probably crucial that you order more of it as soon as possible. If you aren’t using software that allows you to monitor your inventory levels easily, it’s much more difficult to order what you need when you need it.
  • Small business inventory software helps you identify slow-moving products. If you analyze the data provided by inventory management software, it will be more simple and efficient for you to identify products that are slow-moving. Once you know what isn’t selling, you can order less of it from your suppliers and ultimately have more cash freed up to purchase other inventory that is selling well.
  • Tracking inventory shipments from multiple suppliers can be difficult, and inventory management software can help. It’s crucial that you know when inventory is going to arrive, so you can plan your sales efforts accordingly. Inventory management software is probably the best tool to use if you want to track your orders and shipments from different suppliers.
  • If you’re an e-commerce merchant, inventory management software like the software offered by Ordoro will help you keep track of your inventory across multiple webstores. It’s no small feat to keep track of what’s being sold where and what’s in stock overall as a result. That’s why it’s generally a good idea for e-commerce merchants to enlist the help of some quality software, especially if they’re trying to run a small business without much help from anyone else.

Inventory management software is hardly ever expensive, especially when you consider the ROI. With this type of software, you’ll be able to increase your inventory turnover rate by ordering what you need, halting orders of what you don’t need, getting the most out of your relationships with suppliers, and staying organized no matter how many stores or webstores you own. So, why make things harder on yourself without this integral software tool?

 

Author: | Filed under: austin technology incubator, blogging, entrepreneurship, FYI, guest post | Tags: , , , | Comments Off

Kiva launches Kiva.org/women and Partners with Dermalogica to Give Away $100,000 in Loans
Mar 6 2012

The following is a guest post from Kiva’s press team:

Kiva launches Kiva.org/women and Partners with Dermalogica’s joinFITE to Give Away $100,000 in Loans to Women around the World

Kiva LogoKivaFor those of you who have made loans on Kiva.org in the past, this will come as a piece of good news. For those who haven’t – it’s a double whammy: you’re being introduced to Kiva AND finding out about their newest venture!

First, here’s what Kiva does, in a nutshell: Kiva.org is the world’s first and largest microlending website where anyone, anywhere can help alleviate poverty and empower entrepreneurs across the globe through loans as small as $25. Lending through Kiva creates a ripple effect in a local economy because with as little as $25, you enable an entrepreneur to build their business and bring goods to their community. As these businesses grow, so do other opportunities: to employ other members of the community, or to make enough money to send their children to school and learn to perhaps become business owners themselves one day. So your $25 loan might help lift an entire village out of poverty!

The best part: When the loan is repaid, you can choose to re-lend your money to help another entrepreneur, maintaining a growing cycle of progress. If you want to read some wonderful entrepreneur stories for yourself, check out how Flaura’s photocopy business, Kumri’s sewing shop, Glory’s goats and Grace’s peanut butter came about or reached their potential thanks to Kiva loans.

The latest piece of good news from the folks at Kiva is that, in honor of International Women’s Day, they are launching Kiva.org/women on March 7, 2012 to help empower women and create sustainable change.

To kickstart it, Dermalogica’s joinFITE program is funding a $100,000 Kiva Women free trial program. What does this mean for you? Free money! You’ll be able to make $25 loans to a female borrower of your choice without fronting a single penny (for as long as the Dermalogica money lasts).

Just for the record, Kiva has already been helping women around the world: since its launch in 2005, more than 80% of the loans funded through Kiva have been to women borrowers in 60 countries including the United States. Kiva has connected more than 600,000 women borrowers to nearly 650,000 lenders, crowdfunding more than $200 million in loans to women.

Because women have proven to be such massive agents of change in impoverished communities when given a minimum of resources, this program is designed to focus specifically on them.

Check out the press release on the topic or go ahead make a loan through Kiva.org/women as soon as you have a chance.

Author: | Filed under: diversity, entrepreneurship, fundraising, FYI, guest post, parent stories, working mother | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off

Little Helping Hands – Leap Year
Feb 29 2012

Today I had the privilege of attending a fundraising lunch for Little Helping Hands, an Austin based non-profit that assists children/families in in volunteering for great causes in Austin.  It was founded by two philanthropic, social entrepreneur parents who wanted to instill those same values in their kids.  They organize kid friendly events so other non-profits in Austin can benefit from families and kids who want to volunteer together.  Examples include helping to assemble and disassemble computers for organizations like Goodwill and giving out totes full of clothes and goodies to kids in foster care, etc.  My good friend Rachel Muir invited me to the event.  I am looking forward to finding an event where the kids and I can go volunteer together someday soon.  I don’t think my kids realize how lucky they are and how much they have.  I think instilling “giving back” values at this age will be valuable for them and whatever community they find themselves living in when they are older.

Happy Leap Day 2012!

Author: | Filed under: entrepreneurship, fundraising, FYI, parenting | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments »

The Robi Comb – Amazed And Stunned
Sep 15 2011

I get many people asking me to blog about their products.  Some even offer to pay me.  Most of the requests I ignore as I don’t feel the products are relevant or I don’t have much to say about them.  But when the PR guy for the Robi Comb reached out to me, it piqued my interest.  My kids got head lice for the first time last Spring and it was icky, tiring and awful.  It seems like more than half the kids in the school got them.  We did environmentally friendly, non-toxic treatments that took 4 hours and they had to sit around in caps until late into the night (i.e. past their bed times and past mom’s patience).  Then my son got them again in summer camp.  I was less mortified but still very annoyed.  I remember getting them as a kid when I went to visit Sri Lanka and the stuff they put on our heads was kind of like kerosine.  This is America, not a third world country, so as any American full time working mother would do, I freaked.  The non-toxic treatment stuff they have these days smells like a caramel frappacino.  I was tempted to make my kids smell something nasty so they could experience the same need to run around outside without stopping until the treatment was done, but I let them enjoy the smell of eucalyptus spray and coffee smelling gunk.

They sent me the following write-up (in italics below) and a free Robi Comb.  I was hoping that I’d never have to use it as certainly my kids were done with that craziness, but lo and behold, it happened again recently.  After asking my son who the heck he was hanging out with (because my daughter escaped them) and they take a bath every day, I used the Robi Comb on him.  It had been sitting on the counter for several weeks and they were curious about it. My son said his head was itchy and I figure he just wanted to use the comb so he was making it up.  I told him that he simply could not have head lice again.  My daughter and I looked in his hair fairly thoroughly with a flashlight and saw pretty much nothing.  Even the things we thought could be nits weren’t.  He has brown hair so it’s easy to see nits and I figured I’d see any stupid lice crawling around.  At his head scratching insistence, I used the comb and I was shocked to discover it found 7 lice.  I swear I saw nothing and everything in my being did not want to believe him when he said he thought he had lice. I guess it was a good thing I listen to my kids most of the time because after running it through his hair several times and changing the sheets, he can go to school without a 4 hour treatment followed up by multiple combings and daily hair spray-ings because 7 lice do not constitute an infestation.  But I decided to use the Robi Comb for a few days just in case and no more were found.  I still sprayed his head with eucalyptus spray and made him use lice shampoo to repel them.  I was impressed with how easy it was to use and how quickly it found them!

As back to school time approaches, so does the head lice boom. Lice, the ultimate creepy crawler, will find its way onto millions of children’s heads this fall. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently reported that an estimated 6 million to 12 million infestations occur each year among children 3 to 11 years of age. However, with the recent increase in head lice breakouts this past year, it’s imperative that all parents be prepared to tackle this common nuisance. This increase has even prompted the American Academy of Pediatrics to amend their “No Nits” policy regarding withholding children from public schools who might still have nits, otherwise known as head lice eggs, present on their scalp. The amended policy says that children with nits do not necessarily pose a risk to the rest of the schools population.

This amended policy has many parents nationwide scratching their head, as they do not want to put their children in any “unnecessary” risk by sending them to schools recently affected by an infestation. As evident by this policy’s amendment, head lice is not so much of a health or hygiene issue; however the way these pests are commonly treated is of greater concern. In the past, the only way to effectively treat head lice was with dangerous toxic shampoos, chemicals, gels or oils; many of which use Pyrethrum or Permethrin, the same pesticides found in household bug killers. Today more than ever, there is a growing concern of the health effects of putting toxins and chemicals such as these on a developing child’s head and the negative long term effects these poisons may have. Aside from being toxic, many of these “traditional” treatments have also been widely reported to not even work, as the lice, in most cases, have built up a resistance to the pesticides used rendering them essentially useless.

In the event your child brings home more than just homework this school year, the Robi Comb from LiceGuard is an ideal product for ridding their scalp of lice without the use of harmful chemicals. The Robi Comb is a non-invasive electronic lice comb powered by a single AA battery that detects and destroys lice on contact simply by combing it through dry hair. When the Robi Comb’s metal teeth touch lice, the lice get zapped, die and then get combed away. Unlike chemical treatments, the Robi Comb can be used as often as you like and can be used repeatedly by the entire family. The Robi Comb lets you know by an audible signal whether or not head lice are present, so it can be used to detect an infestation as well as treat it. In fact, many school nurses are now using the Robi Comb for exactly that reason. School nurses report that Robi Comb is able to find lice which they have missed when checking visually. More than 3,000 school districts in all 50 states are now currently using the Robi Comb. This innovative product is available for purchase for $29.99 at major retailers such as Walgreens, CVS and Rite Aid, as well as thousands of local pharmacies across the nation.

Author: | Filed under: FYI, parent stories, parenting, working mom, working mother | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Re-Elect Randi Shade For Austin City Council
Jun 6 2011

It’s been three years since I posted about my friend Randi Shade running for city council.  She ran back in 2008 and she’s running for re-election.  After the first round of votes, she is in a run-off.  I’ve known Randi for a long time.  She’s not afraid to speak her mind, admit her mistakes, take calculated risks, represent her constituents best interests, and follow her dreams.  She’s also a mom with two kids.

Randi Shade is the only person on the Austin City Council who is an entrepreneur. She launched a venture-backed Internet start-up in 1999 about the same time I launched my first company.  Then when the bubble burst she bootstrapped the company until she was able to sell it to a publicly traded company in 2005.  The company was also awarded a patent for its unique method for generating new money for charity.  Randi has been an ardent supporter of growing Austin’s tech sector, and she also served as the Executive Director and as a Board Member of the Austin Entrepreneurs Foundation.

She helped launch the Pecan Street Project to help Austin become a leader in smart grid technology and renewable energy.  She brings an important voice of reason and balance to the Austin City Council and that impacts us, too.  For example, Randi has a track record for opposing red tape that negatively impacts property and business owners. She has a track record for supporting new jobs especially in high tech, and recognizing that Austin is growing, she has always been willing to support development that makes sense.  While at the same time making sure that Austin has the infrastructure in place to support its growing needs.  This run-off election is a critical election.  Your vote matters. This is our Austin and we control its destiny by voting for the people who shape its future. We cannot afford to sit this election out. Early voting starts on Monday, June 6.  Here is where you can vote:  http://randishade.com/212/vote.htm

I believe that because of her and others support of the technology and entrepreneurial communities, Austin is one of the top cities in job growth in the country.  Austin has also been named one of the top most innovative cities in the country.

So if you live in Austin, please get out and vote!

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Man Without A Mission
Jun 4 2011

What is a man or woman without a mission?  Bored? Annoyed? Anxious? Lazy? Happy? Sad? Relieved?  Ecstatic? Depressed?  It probably depends on the person.  I think most of us…especially the entrepreneurial types…need/want a mission and something to believe in.  We want a calling of sorts whether it be parenthood, religion, work, volunteering, etc.  We want to make a difference.  We want something new to fix or figure out.  What happens when for some time nothing inspires you and you wander aimlessly in search of something and/or someone to believe in?  Someone to believe in you? It’s exhausting.

Some people just give up the search and settle for the mundane or just decide they are comfortable where they are and say to themselves ‘what more could I ask for?’  I sometimes envy those people because life might be easier.  But then again it is probably harder in many ways to pretend and be someone you are not.

Author: | Filed under: entrepreneur, entrepreneurship, FYI, random stuff | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments »

entrepreMusings – New Blog Design
May 9 2011

It’s finally here!  I have a new blog design and it’s really cool.  It’s simple, it’s clean, it’s pretty, it’s fabulous and it was designed by Brian Hurdle, IT/network guy by day, wedding photographer extraordinaire by night/weekends.  I’ve changed the subtitle from “babbling about business, babies, and parenthood” to “babbling about business, parenting, and music.”  My kids aren’t babies anymore.  I realized it’s been closer to 4 years since I started blogging (thanks to Connie Reece) and a blog redesign was way overdue!  And my current entrepreneurial endeavor is music related.

The design incorporates musical notes, buildings, paisley type designs, and of course elephants!  Elephants are my favorite animals, and I have a collection of various elephant figurines.  My songwriting partner and I have been making progress on music creation, and we have 5 songs in various stages of completion.  We even have a band name, a facebook page (if you are really curious to know the name, you’ll just have to click that link), and a YouTube channel.

We haven’t done much promotion of any of these because our songs aren’t ready to publish, but we may begin promoting at least the facebook page so we can get support from folks to help us make sure we do complete what we set out to do.  This will be no easy task given both of our busy schedules and different worlds.  He’s a professional musician and I’m a professional “wondering what to do with my life next while wreaking havoc in some small business” type of person.

Thanks Brian for exercising your creative muscles to come up with a design that makes me happy!  Next he’ll be updating my twitter page (which I rarely use but may one day be worth something since I was a fairly early adopter) to match the blog design.

Author: | Filed under: blogging, entrepreneurship, FYI, marketing, twitter | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Osama Bin Laden Is Dead
May 2 2011

I don’t watch the news often because most of it is depressing, and I get most of my news by reading articles online.  But last night I just happened to switch to CNN around 10:00 pm CST after seeing a recording of one of the few drama shows I watch and saw the news about Osama Bin Laden’s death.  I checked out FOX News as well…just to make sure both stations were reporting the same thing.  Lo and behold they were except for they spelled his name “Usama.”

The strange thing was that I happened to be watching TV the morning of the 9/11/01 twin towers disaster.  2001 was a BIG year of change for me personally and professionally and for some reason I was up early watching TV when all of a sudden I saw planes flying into the World Trade Center in New York.  I couldn’t believe my eyes at first and thought it must be some weird kind of movie, but it was true.  I had family and friends who lived in New York.  One of my friends was in the Merrill Lynch building just before the planes hit but fortunately, he made it out safely.

It’s been almost 10 years since that crazy day.  It took 10 long years and a lot of money to find him and kill him.  Who knows if al Qaeda will retaliate.  I hope they are as tired as we are at all the stupid killing over things that really do not matter.  I can’t imagine that God, however anyone chooses to believe in Him/Her would condone such senseless acts since we are all His/Her children.   “9/11″ was before either of my children were born so when I talk to them about it they don’t really understand and I guess they never will.

I’m glad he’s gone and I hope wherever his soul goes it gets a good hard deep cleansing with extra strength bleach and a huge dose of painful reality.  That way if he comes back again to earth, he will be highly sanitized.

Now onto the next chapter of humanity…

Author: | Filed under: FYI, new york city, random stuff | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Google Translate
Mar 1 2011

Since I don’t have time to write a long post, I figure I’d post about a neat Google tool called Google Translate at http://translate.google.com/.  Since my kids are learning Spanish and Mandarin at their school, and I don’t really know either language, this tool is an awesome way to translate from a variety of languages to another variety of languages.  Well, I know more Spanish than I do Mandarin/Chinese.  You can type in a word and pick what language you want it translated to and not only does it give you a text translation, it also (for most languages) also gives you a verbal/audio translation.  How cool is that?

My kids were typing all sorts of things in with some as simple as “little cat” or “little dog” and listening to the translation in French, German, Spanish, Chinese, Hindi, etc.  They thought it was fun and funny and so did I.

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Some Interesting Quotes
Jul 12 2009

I’ve seen a few interesting quotes recently and thought I’d share.  On another note, on Friday I was talking about wanting a sno-cone and yesterday (Saturday) I took the kids to one of my son’s friend’s birthday parties and they had a sno-cone machine!  I chalked up the fortuitous coincidence to the Law of Attraction (wikipedia).  One of my online friends, Edward Mills, blogs and coaches on the Law of Attraction.  I’m not sure he would agree that having a desired sno-cone show up in my life is the best example, but still.

Now for some quotes:

In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out.  It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.” – Albert Schweitzer.  From a Deepak Chopra Center for Wellbeing newsletter I get occasionally.

“At the age of 20, we don’t care what the world thinks of us; at 30, we worry about what it is thinking of us; at 40, we discover that it wasn’t thinking of us at all.” - unknown.  From a birthday party evite from a friend who is turning 40.  I’m looking forward to 40 only for that reason.

The following quotes are from a guy named Jeffrey Fry who I honestly can’t remember how I know.  He sends out a daily quote/tidbit email and since I find many of them interesting, I have stayed subscribed to his list.

You often love someone not for what they are, but for what you are when you are with them.” – Jeffrey Fry

Change only happens when the status quo becomes unbearable.” - Michael Drapkin. I recently heard a speaker on the topic of understanding people and he had another twist on this quote that goes something like this “Nothing changes until the pain of remaining the same is worse than the pain of changing.”

Kindness is the oil that takes the friction out of life.” – Dustin Hosterler

I must not fear.  Fear is the mind-killer.  Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.  I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.  Where the fear has gone there will be nothing.  Only I will remain.- Frank Herbert

Love is the highest bliss that man can attain to, for through it alone he truly knows that he is more than himself, and that he is at one with the All. - Rabindranath Tagore. Interestingly, I have a cousin named after Rabindranath

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Interesting Reads Around The Web
Apr 18 2009

Here are some links to some interesting reads relating to entrepreneurship, people, parenting, and even Oprah!  I’m mulling over a couple of other blog posts in my head but until then check these out:

The Fine Art of Catching Liars – an interesting read on Time.com about research done by a psychologist on how to determine if someone is lying.  Might be useful for those of you who have older kids.  My kids haven’t started lying yet as far as I can tell.  My son just told me that he told some people at last week’s Easter Egg hunt that he ate some candy in one of the eggs when he didn’t.  I asked him why and he said he didn’t know but he seemed to think it was funny.  I’m honestly not even sure why he confessed that to me randomly.  I told him well that could be lying unless he was joking around with the other kids.  I think I’ll have an easier time detecting if my son is lying than my daughter.  I can already tell she will be pretty good at spinning a believable story and hide her true feelings.

Venture Capital Down 50%. It’s Not Just The Recession Folks – an article on TechCrunch analyzing how the decrease in venture investing is different this time around than in the post bubble bursting era of 2001-2002.  They say that clean-tech investing is down because so much more time and research is needed.  Health care investment is holding or not falling as fast.

Susan Boyle – The Biggest YouTube Sensation Ever? – an article on Mashable that links to the most viewed YouTube video of all time.  It’s of Susan Boyle singing on Britain’s Got Talent.  She shocked the world with her voice given her age and appearance.  A true “you can’t judge a book by its cover” story.  What an amazing voice.  She’s 48 years old, never been married, and his been taking care of her mother for quite some time.  Even Simon Cowel (American Idol judge) was blown away.  Go HERE to see the video.

Capsula Music – My brother-in-law sent this to me.  It’s an album of funky, psytrance music that is supposed to work in the background of your mind while you go to sleep.  I’ve listened to it while working on my computer but haven’t tried it yet before going to sleep.

How To Nail An Interview – for those of you looking for a job.  This was linked to in a post by one of my favorite bloggers, Seth Godin.  It lists 22 tips on how to do well in an interview.

Ashton Kutcher and Evan Williams (Twitter Founder) talk on Oprah – a post on Mashable about how last week Oprah joined twitter.  She interviewed Ashton who became twitter’s first user to gain 1,000,000 followers!  He was competing with CNN and he won.  Yes, I followed Ashton and Oprah!

Enjoy the videos and articles.  There is so much going on in the world and probably these links are some of the more trivial pieces of what is truly happening but that’s what I see and what people are sending me.

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