Tuesday, August 31, 2004

That's 42 in dog years

Ozzy used to be teeny tiny!

His 6th birthday is coming up next week, and now he weighs close to 65 pounds.

But he's still my baby dog. And once he was made to wear a space helmet.

Monday, August 30, 2004

Friday, August 27, 2004

Greetings from the land of Garibaldi, the West Coast Swing, and the Desert Tortoise! Find Yourself Here.

If you're like me, when you meet people from other states, you like to greet them with trivia about their home state. I prefer the state motto, but sometimes (especially when the motto is in Latin) I go for the state nickname. For instance, when I met Joyce from Connecticut, I remarked, "Ah. The Nutmeg State." When I talk to my friend Dedi on the phone, I say "She flies with her own wings." Dedi lives in Portland, Oregon. For my Canadian chums, I'll employ their nearest National Hockey League affiliate. When Jean from Drummondville, Quebec called the other day, he was greeted with friendly salutations of "Jean from Quebec! Home of the Montreal Canadiens! How the hell are you?" We were both quite pleased.

If you're like me, everyday you get just a little bit older (as portrayed perfectly in the They Might Be Giants song Older.). And as you get older, you may not be able to keep all 50 state mottos and 50+ state nicknames (not to mention the state birds, flowers, songs and mammals!) ready and available at the forefront of your mind. Plus, with all of the phony top ten list-esque state slogans going around, it can be tricky to differentiate them from the real ones. Never fear! This State Insignia website will help.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Hello, Lomo

Meet my newest passion: Lomography. It's amazing what a wide angle Russian lense can do to your world.

Even APV's old Honda Civic looks exciting with a little help from Lomo.

Indian food in Lower Haight will never be the same!

A little post-lunch break with Nanna...

One of the many beautiful historic buildings in downtown Palo Alto, this one is right across the street from our office.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Sarah Vowell on Thanksgiving

I recently read Sarah Vowell's newest book, The Partly Cloudy Patriot (she's my favorite author, along with Daniel Handler.). I just love to conjure up her distinct voice in my head as I read her books--she also does radio commentary on This American Life. I found this passage to be extra insightful, and I thought I'd share:

"Our great-grandmother Ellen passed through here (Ellis Island) on her way from Sweden. We watch a video on the heath inspections given to immigrants, walk past oodles of photos of men in hats and women in shawls. Though no one says anything, I know my father and mother and sister are thinking what I'm thinking. They're thinking about when we moved away from Oklahoma to Montana, how unknown that was, how strange and lonesome. I read a letter in a display case that says, 'And I never saw my mother again,' and I think of my grandfather, how we just drove off, leaving him behind, waving to us in the rearview mirror. And here we are in New York, because here I am in New York, because ever since Ellen's father brought her here, every generation moves away from the other one.

"It is curious that we Americans have a holiday--Thanksgiving--that's all about people who left their homes for a life of their own choosing, a life that was different from their parents' lives. And how do we celebrate it? By hanging out with our parents! It's as if on the Fourth of July we honored our independence from the British by barbecuing crumpets."

How the...? What the...?

A joy to behold, someone has finally created a web page of classic films shown in 30 seconds, and re-enacted by bunnies. Honestly, it's about damn time.

And once you're bored of that, feel free to satisfy your voyeuristic tendencies in the greater, whiter North with the North Pole webcam! Also a joy to behold.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Arrrrr, ye land lubbers! Pieces of eight!

I've had to post a link to this site everytime I've had a blog (yeah, this isn't the first time I've done this whole dedicate-an-entire-website-to-myself thing. I swear I'm not (much of) an egomaniac.). So here it is, the official What's My Pirate Name? website.

Yours Truly,
Mad Prudence Rackham
"Every pirate is a little bit crazy. You, though, are more than just a little bit. You have the good fortune of having a good name, since Rackham (pronounced RACKem, not rack-ham) is one of the coolest sounding surnames for a pirate. Arr!"

You may also refer to me as Dis Oakengoat.
"You're a fearsome Viking, but you aren't completely uncivilized. The other Vikings make fun of you for that. You have a thirst for battle, and tend to strike first and think later. You might be able to hold your own on the battlefield, but you're no 'berserker'.

You might grumble a bit at the lack of amenities on board a Viking longboat, but you can handle it. Vikings make fun of you all the time. Not always behind your back, either.

You have a fairly pragmatic attitude towards life, and tend not to expend effort in areas where it would be wasted. You sometimes come off as a bit of a snob. Vikings are not snobbish people -- they either like you, or they kill you. Try to be more like a Viking."

Click here to find your Viking name (I did, after all, minor in Scandinavian Studies in college. Always did love a good Icelandic Saga.).

Friday, August 20, 2004

Now THAT'S patriotic!

Actually, it's the Captain America costume that I wore for Halloween last year when we went to the Hotel Utah to see the Extra Action Marching Band. My friend Ira's mom made it! I guarantee that this was the only time in my life that I've ever worn a spandex bodysuit.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

I love the Sutro Tower so much. It's my favorite architectural thing. Ever. I live just below it, in the Castro neighborhood of San Francisco. Sometimes, when it's nice foggy, the whole of Eureka Valley fills up with this dream-like thickness, and I can see just the very top of the tower through wisps of fog, lights blinking in a near-celestial sort of heart beat...

Someday, I'd like to learn more about Adolf Sutro.

Obligatory Dog Photos

One of the best things about working at The Planning Shop is that these people are MY people--dog people.

Nanna is truly a lady. She is very demanding, especially in regards to having her ears rubbed. Her hobbies are fetching and herding, and her turn-offs are accordion music and rules.

Ozzy likes to sleep on my feet and go for long walks on the beach. His turn-offs include cats, raw vegetables, and graffitti.

Executive Decision

Today I've decided to bring my Barry Manilow CD to the office and play it on the stereo. Just try and stop me.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Hooray for blog!

The Planning Shop's new books on display at Barnes & Nobel's Success Bay, July 2004

The Planning Shop finds fame at Book Expo America 2004

That's right, folks. The Planning Shop was living it up at Book Expo America in Chicago last June, unveiling our 2 newest books: Six-Week Start-Up and What Business Should I Start? While attending a breakfast Q&A session with Jon Stewart of The Daily Show, author of America (the book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction, I was selected from the audience to ask Mr. Stewart a question. The majority of the questions asked by other audience members revolved around the upcoming presidential election and politics in general, however; I decided to ask a question about a topic a bit nearer and dearer to my heart: hockey! Little did I know, the event was broadcast on Book TV, a weekend feature of the ever-popular CSPAN 2. So, for all 12 of you who actually watch Book TV (including Rhonda!), that's why you saw me blushing on national television at a Jon Stewart breakfast event. What did I learn from this experience? Jon Stewart isn't much of a hockey fan. Although, he did correctly predict the winner of the 2004 Stanley Cup--the Tampa Bay Lightning--winning me the hefty sum of $5.00.

While we were in Chicago for Book Expo America back in June, Arthur, Rhonda and I had the opportunity to explore Chicago's bustling down-town shopping and financial district.