29 September 2009

29Sept- ugh. i was kind of "that guy" today
So i was at a local, sort of new restaurant today and looking over their wine list, which was small but well thought out. Which is why i was surprised to see a Sancerre Rouge listed as a Loire blend. Always in the mood to learn, and always accepting of my breadth of ignorance, i asked about it. I was told that it was a cabernet sauvignon, syrah, and maybe merlot blend. This seemed like a Languedoc blend but, always willing to believe that i'm wrong, I called up the distributor and confirmed that it was a 100% pinot noir. That was my understanding, that Loire is known for its cabernet franc (chinon) and its pinot noir (sancerre) with ocassional plantings of gamay and cab sauv and other teeny grapes, which usually added in small amounts to Touraine wines.
A part of me felt like this was none of my business, to bring up this oversight. But it seemed so counter to the spirit of the region and, outside of that, it's terribly misleading. Sancerre Rouges (aged, at least) can be wonderfully delicate things. Young ones are more forward but, still, are old-world pinot noirs which are worlds apart from hearty blends of cab sauv, syrah, and maybe merlot. When pairing wines with food, their respective natures are so important.
So. I gently voiced my doubt, always verbally allowing for my being wrong, and then wrote down my findings on the receipt.
I guess i'm writing this to articulate, at least to myself, that i don't like doing that kind of thing but i'm passionate about several fields and misinformation can compromise the enjoyment of these fields for myself and other people.

and it serves as a reminder of how important research is. Of how, as sure as we can be, there are times we can still be proven wrong. And of how being ignorant of the truth isn't something to be ashamed of.
and as bad as i feel about saying something, at least i didn't mention a few mis-spellings on the menu.

15 September 2009

15Sept- i'm of a mind that this is awesome

if i understand correctly, this is a performance of "stand by me" by, simultaneously, many people around the world.

"Stand by Me" performed by musicians around the world from SKAT on Vimeo.

09 September 2009

09Sept- thoughts on progress/awkwardness
This post is borne of a lot but, i must admit, a lot of it is the awkwardness i feel for growing this silly moustache. Now, I told myself I'd grow it because my girlfriend is going out of town and that's the case but now I feel like i have to because I told myself I would. What i didn't count on was this terribly awkward phase during which i feel like i need to explain to people that i don't actually think i look good this way but that this is only a step as part of a larger idea.
Which made me think about progress in general and how, sometimes, it's an idea that frightens a lot of people. Sometimes the idea of taking on a new challenge is daunting to people (me, often) and i broke this down to feeling odd about the shaky fawn legs of learning. I have a friend who took up the violin when most men are finally settling into their careers.
I think taking on a new challenge is brave as well as realistic. And i think it separates those of us who are willing to look foolish as we grow into something from those who are hesitant to look foolish in front of others. They are those who may be turning their backs on all that they can be. But, for crying out loud, we're all growing. We're none of us fully evolved creatures.
I'm constantly learning. I'm constantly accepting that I have limits. I'm frequently in talks with people who are much better learned in the fields in which i wish to excel. I'll probably always have issues with correct pitch in my singing lessons. I'm slowly learning that growing a moustache may be a mistake. But i'm also quite willing to accept that looking foolish is a part of life.
I encourage everyone to embrace the things that may make you a better person but, in the meantime, may make you look silly. Because who cares? And you never know if don't try.
but then again, as w.c. fields said, "if at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a damn fool about it."

07 September 2009

07Sept- nice

01 September 2009

01Sept- so this is kind of interesting
according to the wiki-thing:

The Seven Blunders of the World is a list that Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi gave to his grandson Arun Gandhi, written on a piece of paper, on their final day together, not too long before his assassination.[1] The seven blunders are:

  • Wealth without work
  • Pleasure without conscience
  • Knowledge without character
  • Commerce without morality
  • Science without humanity
  • Worship without sacrifice
  • Politics without principle

This list grew from Gandhi's search for the roots of violence. He called these acts of passive violence. Preventing these is the best way to prevent oneself or one's society from reaching a point of violence.

To this list, Arun Gandhi added an eighth blunder, rights without responsibilities.[2]

According to Arun Gandhi, the idea behind the first blunder originates from the feudal practice of Zamindari. He also suggests that the first and the second blunders are interrelated.

Not to trivialize them, but why aren't these included? :

-Never get involved in a land war in Asia

-Never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line