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I passed this traffic warning sign on my way to work at 8am this morning. By 6pm on my walk home it had been removed. Truth be told...

Broadway & East 4th St., NYC - I passed this traffic warning sign on my way to work at 8am this morning. By 6pm on my walk home the screen was cleared. Truth be told...


I’m almost done with the second of three units in the Rosetta Stone Level 1 Japanese.  I can confidently say that I’m inherently understanding and absorbing the vocabulary.  The grammar is a bit difficult to solidify only because I’m not particularly good at grammar anyway.  I may not have exact sentence meaning down, but I think I understand the basics of it.  I could say something and I’m sure someone would get my meaning.  The one thing I’m confidently weak at is speaking and thinking on my toes.  It seems natural to understand questions and solve problems, but actual communication seems difficult.  If RS requires me to ‘interact’ in a situation, I freak a little and have a difficult time forming conversational patterns.  I guess it’s a common foreign language learning problem.  We say we can understand or even read a language, but conversationally sometimes we fail.  I’m really happy with the results so far and it’s much better than any classroom learning experience I’ve had.  Over time I’m confident I’ll learn to be better conversationally.  Being in Japan will surely help.  But that’s my update.  I do look forward to having someone explain some of the reasons why certain things are done within the language.  RS is wonderful in that it challenges your intuition but sometimes intuition is not enough!  We’ll see how I progress!

Transit of Panama Canal: May 6, 2008. Pacific to Caribbean Transit. MV Explorer. Master Captain Roman Krstanovic

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Phish @ Hampton Colluseum: C. Taylor Crothers

Phish @ Hampton Coliseum: C. Taylor Crothers

Day two of the Phish shows at Hampton Coliseum and like most fans, I’m sitting at home. Like many Heads, I’m listening to last nights show, watching concerts on DVD, YouTube, or whatever else I can do to get my fix. It’s a weird ritual I do whenever Sue Fan leaves for extended periods of time. Just so happens she went to Florida this weekend. Am I bitter that I didn’t get tickets? Maybe. Certainly. We still have three shows to go to in June and I’m mighty happy about that. Good thing for Damien’s wedding right after the NY and MA shows because I always promised Sue I’d follow an entire tour if they got back together. I’d love to do the west coast circuit again. I’m guessing there will be another festival soon but if Japan happens it won’t be feasible. I think SF would have flashbacks from Coventry so I don’t think I’ll drag her to VT or upstate NY. Maybe they’ll do another show in Japan???

I have a few things to say about the state of Phish, the fans and the scalpers. I’ll start by saying I couldn’t be happier with their decision to return. I’ll end with a great HD video clip of a live show…

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i just am.

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I got on the E train at West 4th heading home from a seminar. When I stepped on the train, I think I was listening to “Welcome to the World” by Bobby Weir and Ratdog. There was something savory in the bass line, something bluesy in the guitar. The lyrics weren’t beautiful or poetic beyond measure, but they had heart. I wouldn’t concede that my musical taste is the highest form of absoluteness or that the tunes that fill my iPod would be considered classics to all. I think I can concede that, when I heard that song – like many songs – I felt that I wasn’t missing something. There wasn’t the emptiness of pop or the trendiness of hip-hop, the tragedy of emo or the angst of punk. All that was left was a feeling that a thought had been completed. An appreciation was born. A need to fill a void didn’t exist.

So how does this transpire to a new age of enlightenment? My thoughts that follow targeted the people surrounding me on that train, pondering their levels of consciousness.

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When the Japanese mend broken objects, they aggrandize the damage by filling the cracks with gold. They believe that when something’s suffered damage and has a history it becomes more beautiful. -Barbara Bloom