Archive for July, 2007

6-Cents: Has the iPhone lived up to its promise?

July 30, 2007

Last Wednesday I submitted a response to SFGate.com’s Two Cents community blog. Topic: the iPhone. I figured they would receive a ton of responses. On Friday I received the editor’s standard “Thank You” email, so I assumed my reponse wasn’t selected. I’ve received that email so many times I have it memorized.

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When I got to the office this morning, someone told me they saw me in today’s paper—the San Francisco Chronicle. I went went down for coffee and grabbed the morning paper. Sure ’nuff, there I was alongside seven other gadget geeks on page 3 of the Technology section. Oh yeah! 

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Appearing online in a blog is one thing. Seeing yourself in a major newspaper is something else. Even though my mugshot and quote took up less space than the size of a business card, it somehow seemed huge.

It’s now 10:32 pm. My 15 minutes were up 13 hours ago

   — SFGate.com’s Two Cents blog
   — My Two Cents on other topics
 

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Jacob gets an A+ for effort

July 30, 2007

Jake wants to crawl so badly. He’s not quite there yet, but big boy get an A+ for effort!

22 pounds and all SMILES

July 30, 2007

What does Big Jake think of the iPhone?

July 30, 2007

Jacob can turn over onto his belly really quickly… especially when his favorite video is playing on Uncle D’s iPhone.

Find out what Uncle D has to say about the iPhone, printed in the SF Chronicle Technology section, and SFGate.com Two Cents blog.

St. Peter channelled through a cat named Oscar?

July 28, 2007

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From SFGate.comOscar the cat seems to have an uncanny knack for predicting when nursing home patients are going to die, by curling up next to them during their final hours. His accuracy, observed in 25 cases, has led the staff to call family members once he has chosen someone. It usually means they have less than four hours to live.“He doesn’t make too many mistakes. He seems to understand when patients are about to die,” said Dr. David Dosa in an interview. He describes the phenomenon in a poignant essay in Thursday’s issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

“Many family members take some solace from it. They appreciate the companionship that the cat provides for their dying loved one,” said Dosa, a geriatrician and assistant professor of medicine at Brown University.

The 2-year-old feline was adopted as a kitten and grew up in a third-floor dementia unit at the Steere House Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. The facility treats people with Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease and other illnesses.

After about six months, the staff noticed Oscar would make his own rounds, just like the doctors and nurses. He’d sniff and observe patients, then sit beside people who would wind up dying in a few hours. [Read the rest of the story]

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From the Sydney Herald — OSCAR the cat makes his grand entrances just as life is about to leave.

A hop onto the bed, a fastidious lick of the paws, then a snuggle beside a nursing home patient with little time left. Oscar’s purr, when keeping close company with the dying, is so intense it is almost a low rumble.

“He’s a cat with an uncanny instinct for death,” said David Dosa, assistant professor at the Brown University School of Medicine and a geriatric specialist. “He attends deaths. He’s pretty insistent on it.”

In the two years since Oscar was adopted into the dementia unit of the Steere House Nursing and Rehabilitation Centre in Providence he has maintained close vigil over the deaths of more than 25 patients, nursing staff and doctors say.

Dr Dosa had an essay on Oscar published yesterday in The New England Journal of Medicine.

Like any feline, Oscar gives a hefty portion of his day to sleep. He likes to doze on stacks of patient reports. Or on the desk at the nurses’ station. Or in the linen closet.

When awake, however, the mixed-breed cat shows a solemn dedication to duty, making regular “inspection” rounds of the unit, sauntering in and out of patient rooms – as if checking on the condition of the occupants.

When death is near, Oscar nearly always appears at the last hour or so. Yet he shows no special interest in patients who are simply in poor shape, or even patients who may be dying but who still have a few days. Authorities in animal behaviour have no explanation for Oscar’s ability to sense imminent death. They theorise that he might detect some subtle change in metabolism – felines are as acutely sensitive to smells as dogs – but are stumped as to why he would show interest.

In any event, when Oscar settles on a patient’s bed, caregivers take it as a sign that family members should be summoned immediately. [Read the rest of the story]

Sporting #23

July 19, 2007

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A couple weeks ago my 10-year old niece says, It seems like all the best players in sports are #23. She could very well be right.

David Beckham began training with his new team this week—the Los Angeles Galaxy—and he will be wearing the coveted #23.

Beckham press conference

Local LA news on Beckham’s first week training with the Galaxy

Is Justine Timberlake a good actor?

July 15, 2007

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I recently saw two films on DVD that featured Justin Timberlake—Alpha Dog and Black Snake Moan. I thought both films were good, better than I expected. Both were engaging for different reasons. Alpha Dog had an quirky ensemble cast and such a realistic look at partying. Black Snake Moan was shot so brilliantly—dark and beautiful—and the music was awesome.

So can JT act? He’s not bad, but he’s no Crispen Glover or Martha Plimpton. The way I see it, when an actor truly nails a performance, he owns his character. It would be impossible picturing anyone else playing that role.

Alpha DogAnton Yelchin and Ben Foster were perfect as the Mazursky brothers—Zack had my sympathy from start to finish, and Jake was so intense he scared the fuck out of me. If you took away all their lines—so neither spoke a single word the entire movie—I would probably still feel connected to their characters. That’s how good I thought they both were. [Official movie website]

Black Snake MoanChristina Ricci and Samuel Jackson were amazing both individually and together. Their chemistry is so hot, it’s borderline creepy. [Official movie site / Interactive MySpace page]

Justin Timberlake doesn’t seem like he’s quite there yet as an actor, but I think it’s just a matter of time. He’s definitely surrounded by a lot of talented people.

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Paris—Je t’aime

July 13, 2007

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I took these photos in 2001. I fell in love with Paris immediately. (Paris, France. Not Paris Hilton.) Seeing the film Paris, Je t’aime quickly brought back memories.

Just hit it hard

July 12, 2007

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Notes on a night at Cigar Bar coming soon…

Transformers… a very long Michael Bay movie

July 5, 2007

I saw Transformers on the the 4th of July with my sister’s family and one of my two nephews currently visiting from Delaware. We got there 45 minutes early, but the theater was already packed. There weren’t enough seats, so my 5-year old nephew started out first sitting on his dad’s lap to score Red Vines, then his mom’s lap for popcorn, and eventually ended up sitting with yours truly not just for the root beer but also to fall asleep. What could be better than a heavy 5-year old asleep on your lap—snoring, sweaty and smelling like he put on way too much sunscreen—to weigh you down during a typically long Michael Bay flick?

I don’t usually rush out to see blockbusters, and that’s basically Michael Bay in a nutshell. But I have to give him credit—Transformers is awesome! A little long, but very well done. The storyline was a little sketchy, but the action was incredible. Definitely to try to see this film—a big screen with a good sound system is a must.