Search This Blog

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Friday, February 19, 2010

His Holiness The Dalai Lama

His holiness spoke today in Washington, DC to the National Endowment for Democracy. 
He giggles and speaks such truth to power, regardless how it might offend them.
But maybe that is because he does not.
The two most important issues he raises are the protection of human rights and living in harmony with the universe. Change must come through people. Humans have equal rights from birth that give us a sense of responsibility and involvement. Education is key. 
When asked which country India or People's Republic of China will be the most influential, he replies, "The US."  The room erupted in laughter and then his holiness went on to say that because India has an open society of democracy. Because of this a meaningful society must have individual freedoms. These things are lacking in The Peoples Republic of China. 
When asked, "Do you ever have a bad day?" The Dalai Lama told a story. The story of how when he was a young scholar, his instructor would put a "yellow holy whip to the yellow holy student". Laughter again. He goes on to say that out of fear he studied. If he played too much, his holiness has the fear of the yellow holy whip. Everything is interconnected.
It is ok if a problem is difficult. Analyze it. Work on it. If there is no way to work it out, not to worry.
"So then Tibetans due to our own Karma-nothing can be done." He giggles again. 
His holiness says we Americans are too excited-too much complaining.
His advice?
Know right from wrong. 
Good from bad. 
In a deeper level, keep calm.
We all have the same capacity, same potential as everyone else.
Love compassion and universal responsibility are the source of peace and happiness.

Simplicity in times of such complexity.
Perhaps it is not as complex as we believe.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Olympics 2010

To DIY For!

Attention all commitment-phobes! If decorating walls of that living room sounds like too much of an undertaking, find that must-have middle ground with French company Nouvelle Images decals. For the Crayola happy group, there are many fun unique cutie-pie creatures in pink and blue for the nursery. Or stick 'em up with a multiplex of mod wall images, from a Warholesque Marilyn to baroque swirls and poppy bouquets aplenty.
Just think of them as a grown-up version of a temporary tattoo.

nouvelles images

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Wine Tasting At First Sight

Looking at a glass of wine poured in a clear glass against a white background your eyes will tell you much about a wine's personality. It can reveal a wine's age, character and drinkability. 
Color is extracted from pigmented skins of grapes during the process of fermentation. A cab's skin is thick and highly colored where as the lightly colored pinot noir gets it's color from the staining of the fermentation juice as the alchemy of fermentation evolves. Rose wines are created by fermenting the juice in contact with the skins for shorter periods of time while white wines are produced by simply fermenting the juice.

White wines that are pale, bright, clear and luminous with reflections of green show very young wines like reisling, savignon blanc or pinot grigio. The juice is fermented in stainless steel tanks and are often best enjoyed young (as whites mature in bottle, they gain color). The longer they are bottled they do not retain it's freshness and will not be as light and bright as it was when it was first bottled. 
Pinot grigio and reislings are usually grown in cooler climates such as Germany, Northern Italy, and California. White wines that show deeper golden colors are usually fuller bodied examples of wine from warmer climates such as Australia, Southern France and Southern California. If the wine is fermented in oak casks, this gives them more extracted color, viscosity and power. 
Chardonnay is the grape that most often portrays this style and is a more "muscular" example of white wine. 
By swirling the wine and observing the "legs" that cling to the sides of the glass you can see this more clearly.

Bright light cherry red colored wines usually accent a see-through clarity that reveals subtle fruit forward flavor. French Beaujolais is produced from the gamay grape, pinot noir from the same named grape from New Zealand and chianti from Tuscany's sangiovese grape will have a delicate body and restrained character.  They are best enjoyed within three years of the vintage date. Its all about the ripe fruit accenting cherries cranberries and strawberries without the impact of oak. 
Darker black or blue berry-colored wines with shades of purple usually indicate highly extracted styles which ,if immature, can be opaque. Usually produced from highly pigmented grapes with thick skins, such as cabernet sauvignon from Bordeaux France or Northern California. Shiraz from Australia and some California zinfandels from California can be very dark when first bottled. As they mature in bottle they slowly become lighter and reflect more of a garnet ruby hue. These wines are very age worthy.

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Power of Now

Look to this day.
For yesterday is but a dream.
And tomorrow only a vision.
But today well lived
Makes every yesterday a dream of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope.
Look well therefore to this day.
                          ~sanskrit proverb

If I Had Eight Hours To Chop Down A Tree, Id Spend Six Hours Sharpening An Axe

The first day the young lumberman cut down ten trees. His axe was keen and he was strong and fresh.  The second day, he worked just as hard. In fact, he felt that he worked even harder than the first day. But only eight trees fell.
Tomorrow, he would get an earlier start. So he went to bed early and the next morning worked as hard as he could, but managed to cut down only seven trees.
The following day, he was down to five trees. The fifth day, he managed to chop down only three trees, and was exhausted by nightfall. Early the next morning, he was chopping away furiously when an old man passed by and asked, "Why don't you stop and sharpen your axe?"
"I can't. I'm too busy chopping down trees," he replied.

Thursday, February 4, 2010