One day of shopping left and for most guys that means head to the mall and sprint around with a bunch of other zombified dudes who would seem to be hoping for divine gift-giving intervention. I love it. I think that it is one of the best places to see the best of the "holiday spirit" which to me means a horde of people thinking about other people and trying desperately to get something that makes someone else happy. This mood is at its apex on Christmas Eve in any mall in America so check it out in person but then when you get home sign up for Etrade and get your loved one or friend or whomever a few shares of stock. You can transfer them after the holiday and with the market down as it is there are MANY great buys. I suggest Apple, Nintendo, Starwoods and Sealed Air...but I hear it is the thought that counts not the ROI.
I may be getting to swayed by the holiday spirit but I think that this Faux tree is working. Sure it is a little toilet brush like but I think that is what is making it cool. If the local tree lot is all sold out perhaps Unicahome can you one of these via FedEX?
By now I know that the W hotel is hardly new news to anyone but a gift certificate for a weekend at any of their properties still makes a damn good Christmas or New Years gift. I am staying at the one in the French Quarter in early January and it is sure to be a good time. The one in SF is especially fun due to the expert concierge, Meagan Rounds.
If you are looking to give a gift that is a little less plastic and perhaps a little longer lasting maybe a charity is the way to go. I enjoy charitybuzz.com but I also like to give a little something to the general fund at my college, CCAD. Why give money to a college? Although I personally think teachers have it pretty easy, I donate because of the impressive level of change that is underway at the school and because I think that they teach the right balance of creative thinking and discipline. I think it is the kind of institution that is large enough to be stable and have a lasting impact but small enough to be nimble and fresh. I think they have the potential to produce the kind of people that make the world better for everyone. Also, they accept almost any denomination with sincere appreciation.
The Colorsplash camera will re-cast your world in a gorgeous riot of color. Its patented colorwheel system puts several tinted flash filters at your finger tips for instant selection; with an additional 9 filters included to exchange. Long exposure capability creates dreamy streaked backgrounds behind crisp, color-flashed foregrounds. It uses 35mm film and is available on hive.com for around $80.
I know it is not new to the market this year so you probably won't get to fight to buy one but the iphone is still worth every penny. It does take some getting used to because it is so much more than just a phone but once you have had it for two weeks you will never go back.
Every year I get a Hallmark Keepsake series ornament for each of the boys. Edison gets the Star Wars series and Ian gets the snow globe. Unfortunately the geniuses at Hallmark discontinued the snow globe series so now I am looking for a new series to switch him onto. Maybe the classic muscle car series? I think that they should never cancel a series (especially after only 6 years) once they get you started it seems weird to switch. Anyway, I went to the local Hallmark store to confirm the cancellation and I highly recommend their new line of holiday wrapping papers. The prices have come way down and the patterns are great. I got two big rolls of paper, three cloth bows and a bunch of gift tags for $11.00.
One more for you HC: I just read an article on Sustainablog.org about the Gateway Electric Vehicle Club. This image shows retired college professor Charlton Jones and his retrofitted ‘74 Porsche 914 (purchased on Ebay) which he spent $19,000 to convert to an electric vehicle.
A good friend recently asked about flat screens. Here is the thing, as far as I am concerned the only way to go is the 42" Bravia by Sony. Oh sure the LG looks sexier and has sweet finishes but do not be swayed by the gimmicks and don't waste your time reading consumer reports. I think they are on the take anyway. Also, please do not even think about Panasonic. To answer your next question, No. 42" is not too big. It may seem too big but believe me it is just right. Could it be too small? Yes! If you sit more than 12' from the TV get a larger size.
I recently had the privelage of receiving a bronze medal at the Japanese Design Foundation's annual competition. It is probably the most professionally run competition I have ever been a part of and all of the board members and jury were impressively coordinated. Unfortunately, being one of three westerners at a conference where the theme is "The power of Asian design" was a bit uncomfortable. Although I know it was not the intention. There is much I could say about the conference, the award process and my experience of Osaka but I think that it is probably not appropriate for the blog. Of course, I might feel differently if I had won, as Michal did in 2007.
A very enjoyable, sweet and uplifting movie starring the normally annoying Russell Crowe. A good day is set in France and is the story of A British investment broker who inherits his uncle's chateau and vineyard, where he spent much of his childhood. He discovers a new laid-back lifestyle as he tries to renovate the estate to be sold.
According to Eco-Centric
Ovetto is a stunning Italian architect designed recycling bin made from recycled plastic and is a future design classic.
Contains three compartments and a central bottle and can crusher to compress your waste. The design rotates round its central axis so you can give your Ovetto pride of place, or put it in the corner of a room and still have access to all the bins.
Each compartment has a door for bag removal and a small opening with a cover for waste deposit. The covers close tightly so that bad odours cannot escape. 30 litre bags or standard supermarket shopping bags can be inserted into each of the compartments. The White and Coloured Ovetto bins are made from a minimum of 40% and a maximum of 70% recycled plastic.
They say "Forming, filling, closing, and final packaging to market requirements can only be realized by suppliers with a complete knowledge of integrating individual machine modules into a customer specific process. ROVEMA offers the complete package from a single source, including project management, manufacture, installation and commissioning at the customer's site together with comprehensive after sales service." But what does that really mean.
The evolution of consumers perception of wood grain is fascinating. I am just finishing reading the book "Wood" and the author talks about the pursuit of shiny object being a rejection of the natural or unrefined. (I wonder what he would say about the sundance catalog?). Anyway this is an interesting place to see it still holding on...high-end audio?
The high-end headphone market seems to have been taken over by the snowboarding industry. I guess that is appropriate given the large demographic but at $900 I wonder if maybe they are missing it a little. Still, it is a great category to work in given that so little form work is being done and there is a decent COG. this one looks a little too Ekara for the price point.
From the cartoon Chowder, this is Shinitzel the rock monster. His creator is C. H. Greenblatt is a former artist on SpongeBob SquarePants and The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy.
The title character is a child named Chowder who is an apprentice to a chef named Mung Daal, who owns a catering company in Marzipan City. Shnitzel is a professional chef who works at the Catering Company usually getting the tedious jobs. His vocabulary consists almost entirely of something that sounds like "rubba-rubba". According to Wikipedia Shnitzel is the "straight man" to the other more excitable characters, and he is frequently agitated. The style and technique of the animation are excellent although the storylines are a bit syrupy. The boys love it.
The phone bites and is nothing but a rip off of the great iphone but, the logo is kind of cool. I doubt it will have a lot of longevity given that the urban vinyl thing seems to have very little edge left. Once they hit TRU it was bound to be played and the people at Tmobile should know that.
Activision has been at it for a long time and seems like an interesting company. Their Stock (symbol: ATVI) is trading well below where it should be. I think that they are going to be one of the few companies to have a really good holiday. Now is a good time to buy. Cool logo too.
I took the boys to see Nanci Griffith at the Berklee Center in Boston this weekend. The show was great and although the boys both fell asleep in the middle of the show they said they liked it anyway. Weird thing is that the smallish venue was only about half full. The acoustics were great so I do not thing it was an audi issue. In the past I have seen her in NorthHampton, MA and she stuffed a much larger place to max capacity there so it was not Nanci. If it is the economy that sucks because people missed a hell of a good show. Even the warm up performer was great. It could be that part of the problem was that no one knows where the Berklee Center is...our dumbass concierge sent us to the Berkley Center.
Starwoods has finally launched their new Aloft hotel concept. I am looking forward to trying it out. It looks like a young contemporary version of the W hotel concept. Actually it looks a lot like a W but with more color and more affordable prices but I will wait for the actual visit before the full review.