Some jams to lead into summahtime-
Some jams to lead into summahtime-
B is a big fan of Malcolm Gladwell. This book ‘David and Goliath’ was my first exposure to his work. It is a quick read. I was able to knock it out during a recent flight. Overall, I enjoyed the book. But I had to take it with a grain of salt.
The premise of the book is that the most favored to succeed can actually sometimes be at a disadvantage by conforming too rigidly to the accepted paradigm of “success” in the respective field. To bolster this thesis, Gladwell gives various examples of underdogs leveraging some unique characteristic to dethrone the heavily favored alternative. As an illustration for this phenomenon Gladwell uses an inverted parabola that roughly equates to the economic law of diminishing returns. In layman’s terms, he makes the argument that there can be too much of a good thing (money, intelligence, athletic ability, etc..).
While I found the book entertaining, I don’t necessarily subscribe to the notion that being and underdog can be leveraged advantageously in all instances. I agree that in certain cases that can be true, the same way that there are exceptions to almost every rule. In my opinion there was enough data and analysis that it wasn’t just another “embrace your flaws!” fluff piece. I thought it was worth the read.
Soundtrack for May. Enjoy.
On our way home from Morocco, we stopped in Oslo for almost a full 24 hours. It was a gorgeous spring day, so we took advantage explored the city a bit. The city center was pretty easy to navigate and small enough that we did the whole thing on foot. The airport is a very quick train ride from the main train station in the center of Oslo. Some of our favorite spots were the opera house (top photo was from the roof of the opera house), and the Mathallen food hall. I didn’t get any photos of the latter. But it has a similar vibe to Chelsea Market or Gansevoort Market. Here are some other snaps from various spots around the city.
Essaouira is about a 2.5 hour bus ride from Marrakech. Similar to Marrakech, it has a medina and souks. Unlike Marrakech, Essaouira is on the coast. We spent our last few days in Morocco exploring the medina, and the beaches. The vibe in Essaouira is much more “western” than that of Marrakech. It felt like it could be a little surf town in any country. Here is some of what I saw:Continue reading
The last day in Marrakech, we did a day excursion and hired a driver to take us to the Ourika Valley, in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains (as seen from Marrakech in the image directly below). It rained on and off for most of the day that day, so it turned out to be a good time to spend riding in the car. Those who know the desert, know that it completely changes when rain falls. Most notably, all of the green comes out. I wouldn’t really recommend this excursion to anyone because honestly, it turned out to be super touristy. But seeing the desert in bloom from the rain was worthwhile. The fast moving clouds also provided for some dramatic lighting at times.
I had the occasion to spend some in Morocco recently with B. Actually, she put together the whole trip, and I was just along for the ride. As Morocco is a very visually stimulating place, I put on my shutterbug hat and went wild. During the span of our 10 days there, I snapped well over 1000 frames. And judging by the length of this post, one would think that I put them all on here, haha. The images in this post are from the five days that we spent in Marrakech. I’m have organized them into three groups:
A bit about Marrakech:
I wasn’t really sure what to think about it before I went. When I arrived it certainly wasn’t what I expected. We stayed inside the medina section of the city. The Medina is the old city center, a labyrinth of narrow streets and alleyways enclosed by a perimeter wall. To say that it is easy to get lost is an understatement. It took us a solid day just to get our bearings, using the riad we stayed in (seen in the first image above, and would highly recommend to others) as a reference point. It was a very invigorating and occasionally frustrating experience. I will say that 5 days was more than enough time to spend there. If I could do it again, I would probably have shortened it to three days.
Here is what I saw, starting with Places and People:Continue reading
Even though it is March and the days are getting longer, it still 100% feels like winter out there. Despite the temps, B and I forced ourselves to be out and about last week. Thursday night we hit the Retna opening at Chase Contemporary. I have been a fan of his for a while. Here is a sample of his Bowery wall mural, as I saw it in March 2012. Anyway, we saw some equally awesome stuff at the gallery opening on Thurs.
That being said, I kind of feel bad for anyone who opened an exhibition last week in NYC, because the town was all abuzz with the fact that Banksy was back in North America and had put some work in NYC. So much hype that even the local news covered it, hahahaha. Lordy, it was like listening to a couple of elderly ladies talking about “the grime raps” or something. Speaking of the Bowery Mural, B*nksy has turned it into his latest propaganda piece.
I haven’t made it over to see that one yet. But we did wander into Chelsea to look at the rat. Here are a couple of snaps, along with a couple of my faves from the Retna opening.
Aaaaand finally, B and I both ran the NYC half on Sunday. It was a new course, starting in Prospect Park, ending in Central Park. The course went over the Manhattan Bridge, which was awesome for me since I mix that bridge into most of my longer runs anyway. The difference being that I usually have it to myself instead of sharing it with 20k other runners. Back to the weather…. this was probably the coldest race I have ever run. It was fine, once I finally got going and the sun came up. But man, waiting for it to start was brutal! New course is amazing. B got a PR. Overall, a really decent day. Here is a crappy pic from my celly of my fellow runners freezing their booties off in Prospect Park.
Bring on the spring weather-