Monday, January 31, 2005

Best line on the Simpsons last night when Homer changes his name to Max Power:

Marge - "But I don't want to snuggle with Max Power, I want to snuggle with Homer Simpson"
Homer - "You don't snuggle with Max Power, you just strap in and feel the G's"

Hilarious! What a great day, too bad I'm stuck in class for all the daylight hours of it :-(

Here's some pics from my forarry yesturday though:

The sun's breaking through, time for a hike! It was totally weird because I went to the trail that I know the best and it was totally different! Over the past week (I didn't get a chance to hike because of the weather) somehow they cut down all the brush (see canopy pics from before) and flattened down all the trails. I have no idea how they did that since it was almost impossible even to walk on some of those trails they were so steep, I wonder how they got the machines up there to do all that. Anyways, whereas before I could only see one main path with one wierd branch off, now there's tens of crisscrossing trails. Very cool.

The residents and bridge from afar (zoomed).

Downtown Salt Lake (zoomed from the hill). The only thing out of place is that smoke stack in the distance that I never noticed before.

It's still trying to break through!

Why arn't my pics transfering to my computer? Oh it's on picture mode...

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Bum, bum, bumming around the web...

Ok, is the WTA selling a good tennis viewing product or...

Now here's a way to advertise! This 5 minute clip re-enacts a scene from Spiderman 2, it's funny, caputres the attention and is a great marketing medium for both Spiderman 2 (video/DVD release) and LEGO. Bravo, give that brand manager a raise!

Very cool, "Frontline" a PBS television show, has now put it's archived shows on the web for anyone to see. Let's hope this is the wave of the future! "The Merchants of Cool" is a documentary that we're actually watching in Consumer Behaviour class, it's pretty good, the credit card one held promise but fell flat and moved slowly.

A site that purports effective pick up lines. Screw the site, I'll just ask my buddy who's been in town for under 24 hours and who's already gone mac daddy on the locals!

A great Canadian passtime, writting your name in the snow. Now you can too... online!

Ever been robbed in your house? It's a devastating event. Now ever had YOUR HOUSE robbed? Absolutly hilarious!

I totally disagree with some of Kottke's movie rattings, "The Boondock Saints" is one of the best movies of all time, I put it up there with the Godfather series (seriously!). Also "The Undiscovered Country" was the best of all the Star Trek movies... get with it Kottke! Great blog, terrible movie critic, don't lose your day job eh! ;-)

Here's a utility that ranks a website's "Geekrank, Curserank, Naughtyrank and Intellectrank". EuroRoss scores:

Geek - 10
Curse - 10
Naughty - 5
Intellect - 0 ?!?

EuroRoss is a cursed geek that needs to be spanked only half the time because the other half of the time he's just not smart enough to figure it out :-)


Here's some pointers on leadership development that I snagged from an article somewhere:

- Leaders talk with employees to share a vision, and encourage them to stretch.

- Try enhancing leadership traits. Write down traits of leaders you respect. Develop an action plan to enhance desired qualities in yourself. Work on one characteristic at a time.

- Find a mentor. Read, enrol in courses.

- Start a new project. Volunteer to lead a professional or community project. Ask for feedback on your leadership skills.

- Schedule periods for self- reflection. Record these in a journal.

- Develop a clear vision. Who do you want to be, what do you want to do? Your vision will help you prioritize activities, guide your decisions and inspire you to attain challenging goals.

- Develop interpersonal skills. Build trust, become an attentive listener, show enthusiasm for others' successes.

- Ask questions instead of giving advice. Good questions make people more insightful and empower them to devise their own solutions. "What's the outcome you want?" "What's the risk of doing nothing?"

Manage yourself. Create a routine. Routines help you regulate life components to maintain top physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health.

- Develop sustainable leadership qualities by networking, continuing to learn, and being open to new ideas.

- Periodically ask yourself whether you're leading or managing: "What's changing in my company and work?" "Am I being responsive to change?" "What's no longer working the way it did four years ago? Why?"

Actually after re-typing these points, which are quite simple and intuitive but also elegant when presented in this simple form made me go look for the author. None other than Dr. Carole Kanchier who also has a book out called "Dare to Change Your Job and Your Life". I'm going to go check that one out I think.


This remake of "Singing in the Rain" for a VW commercial is groovy!

The "101 Dummest Moments in Business". Also from Business 2.0, a great site that requires registration though :-( is the "Smart List". Both worth a glace.

I leave you with something I caught while flipping through the TV the other night off the new HBO series "Unscripted". The show follows some late 20's struggling actors and actresses trying to make it in the professional world, a similar situation to many of us recently graduated MBA's. Anyways this quote hit a cord:

"Enjoy your youth... and make friends with change"

Good luck with exams everyone and a happy career search!

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Synopsis, a friend cums to visit, we meet Friday night, hit the party, he goes home with a chick, I don't see him until 8pm the next night just in time for the next party. What a stud. Anyways while he finishes off in the shower (wow that sounds grosser than it's supposed to), I'm getting some links up from the past couple days:

In a boring list I saw one comment that made me spit on my laptop screen:

"Tip #6 – It's not true that only guys can be funny. Girls can be funny too, they just choose to be pregnant sometimes instead."

This link is cool at first, then the longer you stare at it (roll your mouse over the pics) the weirder it gets, especially at 2AM in the morning. If you need something else to totally waste your time, try microwaving grapes. Of course you can always just read some Calvin and Hobbs comics, the greatest comic ever! (that link shows real snowmen versions of the comic, the comic is actually not that sadistic).

This totally made me sick to my stomack but I'm posting it because it's a real good eye opener, before and after pictures of people that used meth (a powerful narcotic).

It takes about half a nanosecond after something happens before there's someone else selling a t-shirt about it, get your "Brad [Pitt] left Jen for me" t-shirts here and your NHL lockout "Salary-Caps" here. (guys from my hometown started that one!)

When the integrety of the games you are watching cums into question the sport itself faces a crisis of becoming obsolete in the eyes of the public. What's the use in watching a match if you know some of them are fixed? This is what the German referee scandal is going to be dealing with, only one year before the World Cup is supposed to be held in that country. Baseball is dealing with a similar issue affecting integrety of the game (steroids), poorly I might add.

Worldwide brands with estimated value of over a billion dollars, the grand puba being Coke. I'm currently tatkeing a brand mamangement course with the former head of marketing for Coke's Atlanta Olympics campaign, not bad. Here's a great blog on brand issues, Brand Autopsy.

Now that the MBA is almost completed and the job search is in full swing, I find myself gravitated towards PHD program information which I will undoubtenly pursue after a couple years more work experience. Here's one program that really caught my eye from Melbourne Australia, certificate in innovation management. The entrepreneur challenge is a great bonus.

The 99 most desireable women of 2005, for the record I have dibs on #98 (boseworth) #72 (bilson) #62 (racheal) #43 (diane lane) #39 (molly sim) #35 (casta) #32 (milano) #22 (beckinsale) ;-)

With the Superbowl only a week away, there's just as much hype at the business school about the commercials as the actual game. Every year a 30-second ad spot during the superbowl commands the highest advertising prices of the year. It's easy to see why, hundreds of millions of people will watch it around the world, a cross-section of the population that companies can only drool over. Of course this all cums at a price, I think this years 30 second spot goes for 2.3-2.4 million bucks... ouch! Anyways for Brand Management class it's our responsibility to watch all the commercials and rank their impact. Oh yeah, mommy it's my homework to watch the superbowl!

And finally, this is totally cool for burning away the bordom (or filling up procrastination time!). Drag around the letters that other people around the web are doing as well to try and spell some words, cool.

I'm off to the PAR-TEH!!

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Think job seekers are the only ones who lie or "stretch the truth", not so. I just got through two telephone interviews where the job position description I applied for was TOTALLY misrespresented. What a waste of my time, it should be a crime for some of these companies to list "research intellegence activities" when they should be putting "sales" and the phrase "competitive salary" is a joke.

Well at least I'm in the groove, my most promising enquiry to date is an interview tomorrow morning in Boise, I'm flying out in about an hour, and the best part is I'll be back just in time for tomorrow nights big bash which would be perfect to celebrate some good news! Wish me luck!

I saw this picture and just thought it was genius! For all of us who see what we are today and know where we'd like to go, this one's for you!


Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Things are starting to get wierd in the world, or maybe things were always weird and I just didn't notice, or maybe I'm just getting old ;-) I just finished a boring paper to get it out of the way, sweet! My night class is cancelled tomorrow night and I already finished the assignment given to replace it last week so I'm finally going to get to that competitive intellegence research I've been egging to do... yeah I'm a geek, and geeks surf the web, so here's what this geek found today:

Things ARE getting crazy, for instance, when doctors start creating cross-bread animals and humans creating chimera's it's time I do a reality check.

This kind of a temperature rise would kill Winterlude and outdoorhockey man!

Apple's apparently been all pissy with this site because they are interested in Apple products and sometimes search out information about the company before the general public is "supposed" to learn about it. A site/people that are so adicted to your products that they have to stay on the informational cutting edge... yeah sue them for sure, great idea.

I liked this concise and to the point post on Arab suffrage from Micheal Williams:

"Does anyone else find it ironic that the only two places in the world where Arabs have a meaningful opportunity to vote are Israel and -- soon -- Iraq?"

I also scammed this joke off his site (although I've seen it before):

"Mark Twain is at a party, mingling with the upper crust, and he's talking to an obviously rich matron who is busy lamenting the death of morality. Mr. Twain interrupts her to ask, "My dear madam, your complaints are well-grounded, but I wonder if you would sleep with me for one million dollars?"

The woman replied, a bit flustered, "For one million dollars Well, who wouldn't?"

"Unfortunately," Mr. Twain continued, "I don't have one million dollars. Will you sleep with me for twenty?"

The woman became offended and said indignantly, "Certainly not! What kind of woman do you think I am?!"

To which Mr. Twain replied, "We've already established that; now we're just haggling over the price."

Hilarious! Check out his Sept 27, 2004; July 24, 2004 and June 20, 2004 posts (links not working) as they're pretty interesting and humourous!

A decent branding strategy post on being #2 in a market.

You can use Google for more, here's a cool hack that lats you search for online webcams.

A well written assignment on consumer privacy.

6AM wakeup, 7AM class, Thursday's are not kind...

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

The weather in Utah lately hasn't been SO bad, but there's been so much fog that there's been no chance to go hiking, which is too bad since I had a little bit of a groove goin' on. At least it gives me a chance to get to the pics from last weeks trip. Here goes, enjoy!

Walking on the train to the start of the mountain line I wanted to tackle.

The gateway of thorns, very cool.

About a quarter of the way up, maybe a little less, here's a shot back at the uni, notice the fog that had just started a little that day... it would get much much worse.

About half way up, the valley to which I had cum.

The top of the first "bump".

Halfway up the second bluff, with a good shot of the goal.

Three quarters up looking at an opposite ridgeline that I haven't been able to find a path connecting yet. It's on the agenda although it's more difficult to find a trail since there's a military base at the bottom of one side that you have to detour around.

Almost there, snow's a startin'

Just about over the ridge, full snow here, I wanted to write my name but just couldn't squeeze out the ink ;-)

From the top of the mountain I took a shot above the fog line of the mountains on the other side of the city/valley.

Who's this retard?

On the way back I took a different route. This of course meant I got lost to the point of being so surrounded by forest that I couldn't even find my original trail. Just great.

For those of you suffering the Jan 24th blues hangover I highly suggest having pizza and watching movies until 3AM and then today eating a whole tub of Hagen-Daas, so now I'm tired, sick to my stomach and have a HUGE head freeze so I'm not even thinking about some stupid Jan 24th ;-)

Monday, January 24, 2005

You take the good with the bad...

So today during break I'm outside the Student Union Center (where our Caf/Mensa, student hangout is) and we're playing "500 up". For those of you that don't know, this is where one guy throws a baseball (or as in today's case a football) high into the air and another group of guys trys to catch it. If you catch it you get a number of points depending on how high and far it was thrown and if you touch and drop it then you loose the same number of points. The object is to get to 500 points so then you can be the person to throw the ball in the air. Simple.

Anyways, so the guy throws this total bomb of a throw and so me and this other guy take off sprinting to go catch it. I mean we're hoofin' it, this thing is like an NFL punt man! Anyways about 2 milliseconds before I'm about to catch the ball the other guy (who I had a half step on) suddenly stopped. Now you might think that 2 milliseconds is not alot of time, but let me tell you it can seem like lightyears. All in the same instant I'm thinking "why did he stop", "concentrate on catching the ball", "wow this is going to be alot of points"... etc etc.

I wasn't thinking of anything but red-blinding pain after those 2 milliseconds were over. You guessed it, because I was looking behind me in the air tracking the ball I totally didn't notice this fucking low rider flower pot thing and totally flipped right over it. Oh the pain, but it gets worse. Not only is there a frigging flower pot in the middle of the on-campus field (how did I not even see it before??) but there's a picnic table about 25 feet away, you guessed it, packed with chicks all staring my direction with a look of stiffeling laughter (not to mention the roar cuming from all the guys over on the other side of the field). The conversation went like this, I remember it verbateim because I was trying to concentrate on anything but the blinding pain as I lay spread eagle on the ground:

Girl #1 on bench: "Hey are you ok?"

Ross: "Yeah, I planned it like that, I'll be fine."

Pause (I am not moving off the ground)

Girl #2: "You want some help?"

Ross: "No I'm good... nice day out today eh?"

Girl #2: "Um, kinda cloudy."


Ross: "Yeah I guess you're right."

Pause (not one of them I'm sure has looked away, I can still hear the guys laughing on the other side of the field and all I can see is a blanket of red across my eyes)

Girl #3: "You wanna cum to our party Saturday?"


Ross: "Yeah sure, can I bring my idiot friends over there?"

Girl #3: "Sure... we're at Heritage Center, starts around 9... but no football's ok?"

Ross: "Deal."


Girl #2 (or 4 I can't even tell at this point): "Are you just going to lie there?"


Ross: "Yeah I think I'll go to class in a bit."

I'm such a dork.

I'm now back in class, not listening to my prof at all, trying to remember how to type (we all have laptops and internet connections here for classes). So good news is that next weekend is now booked, the bad news is I've got a HUGE bump on my head and my right shin looks like it went through a meat grinder... and I still lost 150 points for dropping the ball...

Update: Perfekt timing on the part of my commrade Stevie J who just got this in:

So true!
I've got a bit of a cold today, probably a combination of the weather and weekend activities :-( As the article that Marta got in today is supposed to be the "worst day of the year". I think my worst day came two days earlier on Saturday, mostly due to a combination of a nasty hangover, consoling friends with serious relationship problems and alot on my mind of my own. It wasn't so bad though since it was sandwhiched in the midddle of a great Friday and Sunday night, none the less I woke up today and desided to compilate a "sad" music CD for the day. Sometimes you just gotta do it.

Heartache is killer. It's one of those totally irrational feelings which is totally consuming and gives you the feeling of no hope. Dealing with heartbreak, is tough. Advice to that effect, is basically like trying to cure someone of stagefrieght by telling them to relax and that it won't be that bad, completely useless while you're going through it, and totally obvious after you're over it. Basically there's a process that you go through, hopefully knowing and accepting that you'll go through one or all of these steps and that there eventually IS light at the end of the tunnel can hopefully give you some little bit of hope... well usually it doesn't but anyway:

1. Disbelief - When you don't really believe it's over, maybe it was just a temporary break-up (like some times before maybe?). At this stage you just keep acting like everything's the same and make small attempts to resume the relationship as per status quo... you are wrong.

2. Desperation - This is when you realize that the normal process after a bad fight is not working to bring the relationship back together. You realize that this time might be for good and you're desperate to stop that from happening. You'll be very emotional, be clingy to the other person and try in vain to monopolize the other person's attention and time. The harder you try, the worse it gets and the farther away they drift. Guil and self destruction are typical tools you'll use in this stage in pursuit of your goal of reunification... they won't work and will help expediate the breakup actually.

3. Anger - You start to realize that you have no control over what's happening and this makes you angry, specifically at the other person. This is where you turn into a monster, saying anything and doing anything you possibly can to hurt the other person that at one time you loved wholeheartingly. Dep down you want that other person to feel the pain you're feeling and they're going to be the outlet to do so. Interestingly even in this stage you still desire the attention of the other person, even if it's just to punish them some more. Demanding for sentimental or valueable gifts to be returned, namecalling and trying to get common friends to unite against you are typical tactics in this stage... you will regret most of them in time (wow I've had some doozies from back in the day from this catagory!).

4. False Completion - This is where you act (and sometimes actually believe) that you are over the other person. Usually this results in a "rebound" relationship or sometimes can lead to destructive behaviour. Progression from this step can lead to a bounce back to steps 1-4 or as a stepping stone to the final step:

5. Acceptance - You finally accept that the relationship is over in the form that it was. Perhaps you can move on a friends (rare) or perhaps not (most likely) but at least you can now move on. It doesn't mean that it still doesn't hurt sometimes, or that you don't think of that person, but it does mean that when you think of that person it's going to be majoritarily (that's not a word!) about the good memories.

I could expand more but I think I'll leave it at that for now. There's many good resources online, including here and here, which basically promote non-destructive behaviour, talking and time. In my experience talking about it with a close friend can be good but is usually overdone and eventually prolongs the agony and pushes your friends to the point of wanting to hear about anything but your breakup. Time is really the only cure, and in fact it probably isn't a "cure" per se but just something that can help the symptoms of heartache.

As you can see experiencing and dealing with these feelings are a part of the process, after all we're only human. This brings me back to my sad CD I made today, below are some of the songs I put on it with some of the key lyrics that have impact, most of these you won't know unless you've spent time in North America but get on your fav P2P utility and pick these up, this January 24th "Misery Day" Mix is for you!:

Switchfoot - I Dare You To Move
"Welcome to the fallout Welcome to resistence
The tension is here
Between who you are and you could be
Between how it is and how it should be
Maybe redemption has stories to tell Maybe forgiveness is right where you fell
Where can you run to escape from yourself?
Where you gonna go?
Where you gonna go?
Salvation is here "

Seether ft. Amy Lee - Broken
"‘Cause I’m broken
when I’m open
And I don’t feel like I
am strong enough
‘Cause I’m broken
when I’m lonesome
And I don’t feel right
when you’re gone away"

Sum 41 - Pieces
"I tried to be perfect
But nothing was worth it
I don’t believe it makes me real
I’d thought it’d be easy
But no on believes meI
meant all the things that I said
If you believe it’s in my soul
I’d say all the words that I know
Just to see if it would show
That I'm trying to let you know
That I’m better off on my own"

Finger Eleven - Thousand Mile Wish
"So we stay until the ground
That we can't come down from splits us away
Maybe stars know why we fall
I just wish they were thinking out loud
Oh, I could wish all night"

Treble Charger - Red
"Saw you looking for a light
face painted cigarette white
you asked the cleanest boy you found
you couldnt see me turned around
his fingers stretched across your empty gaze
but I just cant escape"

Radiohead - Thinking About You
"Been thinking about you,
and there's no rest
Shit, I still love you,
still see you in bed
But I'm playing with myself,
and what do you care
When the other men are far, far better"

Radiohead - Fake Plastic Trees
(basically ANY Radiohead song could be in the sad catagory basically, but these two hold significate weight in my book)
"She looks like the real thing
She tastes like the real thing
My Fake Plastic Love.
But I can't help the feeling
I could blow through the ceiling
If I just turn and run
And It Wears Me Out, it wears me out
It wears me out, it wears me out."

Bangles - Eternal Flame
(this one always touches a soft spot)
"Close your eyes, give me your hand, darling
Do you feel my heart beating, do you understand?
Do you feel the same, am I only dreaming?
Is this burning an eternal flame? "

Sinead O'Connor - Nothing Compares To You
"It's been seven hours and fifteen days
Since you took your love away
I go out every night and sleep all day
Since you took your love away
Since you been gone I can do whatever I want
I can see whomever I choose
I can eat my dinner in a fancy restaurant
But nothing I said nothing can take away these blues
`Cause nothing compares
Nothing compares to you

It's been so lonely without you here
Like a bird without a song
Nothing can stop these lonely tears from falling
Tell me baby where did I go wrong
I could put my arms around every boy I see
But they'd only remind me of you
I went to the doctor n'guess what he told me
Guess what he told meHe said girl u better try to have fun
No matter what you'll doBut he's a fool
`Cause nothing compares
Nothing compares to you"

Chris Isaak - Wicked Game
"The world was on fire
No one could save me but you.
Strange what desire will make foolish people do
I never dreamed that I'd meet somebody like you
And I never dreamed that
I'd lose somebody like you "

Well these next songs aren't necessarily sad but they're currently high on my "cool" list ;-)

Juli - Perfekt Welle (well you knew THIS one was going to be on here!)
"Mit jeder Welle kam ein Traum,
Traume gehen voruber,
dein Brett ist Verstaubt,
deine Zweifel schaumen uber,
hast dien Leben lang gewrtat,
hast gehofft, dass es sie gibt,
hast den Glauben fast verloren,
hast dish nicht vom Fleck bewegt."

The Dandy Warhols - We Used To Be Friends
"A long time ago
We used to be friends
But I haven't thought of you lately at all
If ever again
A greeting I send to you
Short and sweet
to the soul I intend"

Dizzee Rascal - Dreams
" like the talky talky happy talk,
Talk about things you like to do,
You got to have a dream,
If you don't have a dream,
How you gunna have a dream come true"

Ok Class time, I'm going to post the pics from my hike last week that I never got to later...

Sunday, January 23, 2005

So Friday night was the first real night where I got it going "Ross style" here in Utah. There was this MBA mixer diner thing from 5-7 with a bunch of the local businessmen, then afterwards out for drinks. It was supposed to be a mini pub crawl, but the snow storm wasn't really co-operating. These Utah MBA's were talking alot of trash about how hardcore they were "we've gotta drink for 2 since there's so many non-drinkers here" but they were soon cut down to size ;-)

Highlights included upsidedown shots, jumping over the bar to serve a bunch of the guys with the other bartender and trudging through the blizzard at 1AM (when most bars close here) to some dungeon of a place to cap off the night. The 6AM crawl into bed probably had something to do with my brutal hangover yesturday.

I'm going to go watch some football playoffs...

Update: After not being able to go out last night, but with a taste for some action after watching the NFL playoffs, I floated the idea to the air hockey guys (I lost my championship yesturday but will live to fight again) about hitting the town to see what was up. Most had little faith that anything would even be open let alone rockin on a Sunday in Utah. I couldn't give up the idea though since I was kinda bummed out and new it'd be a long night of no sleep anyways so it ws just Rain (no joke, he's real name, I even lost a shot at the bar when we checked his licence!) and me on a semi-hopeless tour. Well God certainly shined on a couple down out of luck souls today because we found a VERY cool hangout downtown after about an hour that has their "big" pub night on sundays. The full deal, NFL (although it was already over when we got there), good eats and a very cool small crowd that are so friendly and welcoming that we were buying each other rounds and shots after only having just walked in 15 minutes earlier! I guess the drinkers in this town have got to stick together!

After countless rounds I realized that it was turning into one of those "let's go out for JUST ONE beers" nights, which if I wasn't careful would mean another 6AM crawl into bed. Once Rain was shoving his toungue down this girls throat and my job of wingman was completed to the utmost satisfaction, it was time to rock out, I'll save my 'A' game for next week, this is the NEW Ross ;-) So 12:30AM not bad, although I'm totally wound up and can't sleep, maybe I'll go see who's in the pool room...

Man it's goina be tough to get up tomorrow... I mean this morning!

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Hung over, bummin' around the net:

I found this New Year's resolution hilarious: "I’m going stop trying to sleep my way to the top. The ratio of trips to the abortion clinic to actual job advancement has just not proved profitable enough."

This also gave me a smile, from the Terra Naomi newsletter: "as you can see, i've adopted a new newsletter format. if you don't see images and colors in this newsletter then you need to enable your browser's html feature. or drop some acid. but then who knows what you'd see...might i suggest option #1?"

When the commercials become the show there's a problem... Superbowl ads can be pretty hilarious though! I'm glad I'm going to be able to tape this for my Product and Brand Management class in which we're going to be reviewing the winners/losers and effectiveness of the ads. At about 2.4 million bucks for a 30-second pop, those commercials better damn well be good! By the way, what are we up to for Superbowl lads?

A cool site to pass the time, put your height in and then you can compare your relative size to other famous people... just as I thought, Alyssa Milano and I are a perfect fit ;-)

So you're a scientist, working for 18 years on a project, and then some intern forgets to turn on your device when the sateilite makes it's only pass by the distant moon of Titan. Great, flush all those long nights of work down the toilet!

Drinking beer reduces the risk of Cancer?!? Yeah that's exactly why I've been drinking so much!... oh wait it says "in moderation"... phooey.

This post about Ashley Simpson is absolutely hilarious!

"While publicly Ashlee Simpson is dismissing criticism of her recent live performances, privately it’s said to be getting to her. After being caught lip-synching on Saturday Night Live and getting booed at the Orange Bowl, Ashlee has been crying on the shoulder of big sister Jessica Simpson, who’s worried that Ashlee will crack under the pressure. As soon as Ashlee got off the Orange Bowl stage, she reportedly called Jessica in tears, asking what she was doing wrong. Hmm, how about sucking? I find that sucking is usually the leading cause of being booed and hated."

Paul Graham writes an entry entitled "What You'll Wish You'd Known" about the lessons he's learned in life and how it would have been of greater benefit to have known those lessons before embarking on that journey (as early as high school). A great piece to read, I've clipped the essence here:

"The only real difference between adults and high school kids is that adults realize they need to get things done, and high school kids don't. That realization hits most people around 23. But I'm letting you in on the secret early. So get to work. Maybe you can be the first generation whose greatest regret from high school isn't how much time you wasted."

Rolling Stone magazine denies a "revised" Bible advertisement, thereby giving the biggest amount of free advertising for both that either could ever hope for. Some brand manager somewhere just got a raise.

It's the year of the video game publisher wars, Take Two tries to despertly respond to last weeks EA-NFL exclusive deal by going after MLB. This is just the beginning, let the cold war begin! The search engine wars are in full swing, is Yahoo! preparing to aquire a blogging community? Of course blogger (the service I use) was bought out by Google and I have nothing but wholesome goodness to say about their service and product offering!

Here's a good post by Scoble about the "nolink" tag issue. The only part that interests me is the responsiveness of the companies involved... THAT'S what makes a great company! (although snaffu's like this don't help!). Semi-related analysis of Apple's product positioning.

Here's a company that lets you print whatever you want on t-shirt, hoodies etc. I came up with a similar idea many years ago and never got around to it, an idea is great but as they tell me in Biz Venture Creation class: "Entrepreneurship is having a great idea AND putting it into action!"
A good Wired interview with Jeff Bezos, CEO of

The RFID tag revolution isn't quite upon us yet... because the technology can't do what it's supposed to do, make it easy to track inventory accurately.

Ok I can't believe this actually happens, well actually after seeing what some people send from corporate e-mail accounts I guess I can, but these idiots used company lines to set up a rival investment firm! You can guess where this story goes, their employer finds out and yadda yadda... idiots! Speaking of investment firms, here's a good site for evaluating the value of stocks.

Suffering through the NHL lockout too? Here's a site that keeps you up to date on recent interviews from players and people involved. With the failure of this past weekends talks it's clear that we're not going to have NHL hockey until at least this time next year :-( At least the most entertaining hockey in the world (Ontario Hockey League Junior) is still going strong! Go 67's Go!!!

Just another lazy Saturday afternoon... ;-)

Friday, January 21, 2005

Wanna market yourself, wanna get a job, wanna stand out from the crowd? Wow, this guys online resume is impressive, attention grabbing, hilarious and totally shows off his skills. Wow, I'd hire him! Here's another one, look at this guy, he's figured it out. Here's an excerpt from one of his articles that I found interesting:

Fourteen Questions to Ask Every Time
To evaluate opportunities, entrepreneurs ask the following questions:

1. What is the need you fill or problem you solve? (Value Proposition)

2. Who are you selling to? (Target Market)

3. How would you make money? (Revenue Model)

4. How will you differentiate your company from what is already out there? (Unique selling proposition)

5. What are the barriers to entry?

6. How many competitors do you have and of what quality are they? (Competitive Analysis)

7. How big is your market in dollars? (Market Size)

8. How fast is the market growing or shrinking? (Market Growth)

9. What percent of the market do you believe you could gain? (Market Share)

10. What type of company would this be? (Lifestyle or High Potential, Sole Proprietorship or Corporation)

11. How much would it cost to get started? (Start-up Costs)

12. Do you plan to use debt capital or raise investment? If so, how much and what type? (Investment needs)

13. Do you plan to sell your company or go public (list the company on the stock markets) one day? (Exit Strategy)

14. If you take on investment, how much money do you think your investors will get back in return? (Return on Investment)

Here's a great site marketing a new restaurant, very cool.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Here's a cool site with some beer stuff including a list of calories and carb content for typical beers. The best are the webcams and the jokes, my personal fav:

"Yesterday, scientists for Health Canada suggested that men should take a look at their beer consumption, considering the results of a recent analysis that revealed the presence of female hormones in beer. The theory is that drinking beer makes men turn into women.

To test the finding, 100 men were fed 6 pints of beer each. It was then observed that 100% of the men gained weight, talked excessively without making sense, became overly emotional, couldn't drive, failed to think rationally, argued over nothing, and refused to apologize when wrong.

No further testing is planned. " :-)

Schneider-Weisse is my favorite German beer and Molson Ex is my favorite Canadian beer... just for the record ;-)

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

I'm going through my old computer files, so I thought I'd post most of the remaining links I've been gathering over the last couple weeks, there's some gems in there so enjoy!

There's danger in choosing a company name as well as in its percieved country of origin if marketing is not tailored locally. Hence backlash against multi-nationals and companies associated with country's of political unpopularity can really feel the heat. Coke and McDonalds, both highly identified as American companies by consumers in the EU took a profit hit during the Iraq war, Colgate another company based out of the US did not because its products are not identified as being "American". Something companies and brand managers should keep in mind.

The Tsunami was a terrible tragety, look at the weird types of unknown fish (scroll down) that have been beached from the depths of the oceans because of it. Makes you realize just how much we really don't know about our own planet.

This looks like it's going to play out like a classic "our technology is better" and then the company dies because of strategy, miss management of markets or some other idiotic non-technical reason. TiVo has lost the Comcast deal, soured the Direct TV relationship and is loosing tons of cash each quarter. Do they really think they have technology that can't be readily duplicated? Do they think customers will stay with a contentless TiVo instead of a cheaper content-filled competitor?

The experts are saying that fraudulant online click-throughs will bring down the online advertising model, personally I think that model will be dead/mutated/outdated before fraud ever gets a chance to bring it down.

I don't know who's running EA's (Electronic Arts) strategy department, but after locking up the NFL to protect it's Madden franchise and its new deal with ESPN effectively killing off its only rival SEGA from the market, they certainly deserve a raise!

Oscar the gouch is cool:

The record industry reportedly uses statistical analysis software to analyse whether a song will be a hit, to review new bands or to choose which songs on an album should be released as a single on the radio. This sounds like the principals of "Moneyball" (a book I highly recommend!)applied to the record industry.

Ok, I know I usually refer to myself as a geek, but guys like this loser reaffirm faith in myself... although I would like to see the new Star Wars on opening night ;-) They even have Mr. Potato Head Darth Vader toys now! This guy is also a contender, a grandfather clock entirely made out of Lego... yeah he hasn't been laid in a while ;-)

This is hilarious, great job Target (a US retailer) for making me laugh and actually want to watch your commercial!

Forrester is launching a magazine. Why you ask? Here's a pretty good take on it.

Were you able to track Santa this year? Did he bring you presents or coal? Have you started compliling next years list yet? I like to get ahead of the pack ;-)

This is interesting, the next level to piercings and tatoos, permanent eye jewelry:

This service from Amazon, where cellphones can scan the barcode of books in stores to see if you can get a better price online would be mint for buying my textbooks here at Utah which average over $100 US a pop... and if I had a working cell phone here...

An interesting post on the "10 rules for successful managers to live by". I like 1, 6 and 7, the others are crap and boring.

What is beercasting? Basically a night out at the Irish pub with only 4-10 people and a recorder to put the discussion on the web. Check it out.

What are the key tasks of leadership? This post has some good insight. This blog deals with leadership issues and publicises the book "Managing Leadership", has anyone read it and can recommend?

Here's something novel, counties offering free land for people to move there. I remember sometime last year there was a competition for a free ocean view mansion somewhere in Australia to an aspiring married couple who wanted to have kids. I wasn't married at the time... um ok for the record I've never been married, anyways but I really wanted to live in that free mansion so I entered me and an unsuspecting co-worker (what's up Al?) into the draw (over 100,000 applied). The fact that I am typing this in the middle of a Utah snow storm pretty much tells you we didn't win :-)

Every what happened to those old television and movie stars that you just don't hear about anymore? Well this site tracks them after their fall from glory. What you talkin' about fool, Mr. T ain't a has-been!

This is going to be me here in Utah at 7AM in the morning on the way to class... in Feb when I get my car down here. Or maybe I won't even need a car if the gov would splearge a little and get one of these cool futureistic transporting rail systems. Thought that first one was good? Check this one out!

I was totally into Survivor for a while, even though the only way I could get it was to download it off the net while in Germany. the one ray of happiness I had during that phase was on my trip to Russia where I was able to see the Russian version (thanks M!). Cool, they use only hot chicks and fat old men for their castaways, catering the the market I guess :-)

Ok, even I need a break after all this stuff!

Monday, January 17, 2005

This is interesting, "Cops on Top" is an organisation that does climbing expeditions in memorial of a fallen commrade. Even better is that they document the whole trip with pictures and even an audio-blog which they upload via sateilite telephone during the climb. This years trip is Kilimanjaro, very cool. Take a look at these pics from a previous climb:

I'll be going up a different hill in about a half an hour, I doubt my pics will nearly be as impressive ;-) There's some pretty heafty mountains around here, I've gotta check out with the university outdoors club or something if there's a climb anytime soon.


Sunday, January 16, 2005

Bummin around the web, watching the NFL playoffs, totally sluffing off readings :-)

If you want to get into a great mood today, start it off by watching this :-) Hilarious! Need another fix? Try this commercial on for size! My gut hurts!

For someone like me who doesn't really enjoy just looking at old buildings, landmarks and famous attractions, this system of adding digital people and stories to the surrounding location is very interesting. More info from the Lifelus project website.

Construction in Antarctica seems to be firing up again. Cool since I hope to be there next year! This pic shows what I have to look forward to. I certainly didn't take this pic with my digi-cam!

If you're into conspirousy theories, this flash movie does a pretty good job at peeking interest (it looks discounting the released statement that a plane crashed into the pentagon on 9/11).

Ladies, this guy can dance!

What a great idea! This startup company's office is well... a coffeeshop. The coffeeshop offers free wireless access to customers so they just go there, buy coffee, lunch, whatever and work all day.

67's lost today, that blows...

Saturday, January 15, 2005

I bought a digital camera yesturday! Obviously I just started with something mid range, and it doesn't take very good pics at night despite a flash, but whatever. I like that it can take short movies with sound, and that function works pretty good.

The view from my dorm window, there's some construction going on in the centre of the square to build a playground for some of the kids (many of the students in the graduate houses are married with kids). Hopefully I'll have something a little more "Utah like" soon since there's tons of good views on the walk to class everyday.

A crazy week of over 45 hours of class is going to be capped by a weekend of readings in front of the TV watching the NFL playoffs... and I want to climb that mountain you see in the background, but apparently my roomate says that takes about 2 hours each way so we'll see.

Update: Well I just got back, wow, take a look at some of these shots. I guess the camera's not so bad in the daylight. I climbed up that "hill" you can see in the picture above.

50% of the way up, 100% tired ;-)

About 75% of the way up I ziggeed over the the left more so I could take a look a the ridge inbetween the hill I was on an the one mext to me. The mountain ridge at the very top is actually very far away and is separated by a HUGE valley between the hills I was climbing and the mountains farther away which you can see in the later pics.

And then I got to the top!

It sucks because I had a great shot with me and the background but I camera lost battery power, that sucker can eat the juice! Next time I'll have to carry up a generator for it :-)

Well not bad for the first try, of course the sun has now come completly out from the clowds and the view would be even better now, but a pretty good initial test climb (I made the mistake of wearing my jacket and was soaked by the time I took my first break!).

Next week, Everest ;-)

Friday, January 14, 2005

My catch phrase of the day: "Are you in it?"

Now that business school has started up again I'll probably have alot more business related links, thoughts, insights and comments... well maybe not so much insight ;-)

Take a look at this article which looks at some predictions in the technology world the author made in 2004 and lists the updated list for 2005. Especially interesting are his idea's on Microsofts Virus Protection Software entry as well as Apple's 6 billion in cash for a possible aquisition or market share play. Today in brand management the professor was stating his opion that the recent Delta low-fare play was a total waste as the other airlines just matched price and . In the professor's words "any idiot can fiddle with price", you've got to provide value (either fundamental or percieved) to differentiate your product and gain market share. On that line will an Apple play for market share by below-cost hardware sales really help? On another note, Apple's drive for the future of digital music seems to be curning along nicely, they just introduced a $99 (American) dollar flash memory iPod.

... but not so fast! Take a look at these insightful observations by Russell Beattie on how Microsoft is taking control of the future. Exemplary strategy execution in action.

Cool, looking through private webcams throughout the world, but I bet at least one person was fired because of this gaft.

An interview with a former CIA agent turned book writter. The interview is pretty lame, but her last comment is quite interesting: "You know we're the last remaining superpower, we should have one of the best spy services there is and we don't." I wonder who does have the best spy network/system, one things for sure though, USA isn't and won't be the last remaining superpower.

Sleep less, eat more? Can't we just do both? ;-)

Supposedly if you draw a calculator with this pen and then use the pen to press the "imaginary" numbers the pen will read out the answer... wow, and I thought my "Speak and Spell" was cool when I was a kid!

Only in Canada, a federal politician charged because he used his official department credit card to buy over $150,000 in... hockey cards. No joke. Like I said, only in Canada!

See how I started off with some business links and then totally wandered around from topic to topic... yeah that's called focus ladies and gentlemen ;-)

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Last night in Financial Statement Analysis class we valued Google stock using standard measurement techniques. Drumroll please... we came up with a value of $3 per stock (Google is currently trading around $195). Um, what's up? We jigged the numbers to include %200 revenue growth (so by 2010 they'd theoretically have to be generating as much revenue as Microsoft does today). New valueation... $4. Ok somethings wonky here, no joke. Google's reporting comes out Feb 1 where we'll hopefully get some indication as to where they'll be spending their over 3 billion dollars in cash... hopefully.

At the same time it's impossible to justify online advertising as the driving force for this kind of future growth and other revenue streams such as the now popular desktop search tool don't seem to be materializing anytime soon.

The number of patents a company submits can indicate innovativeness, here's the top 10 patent filers of 2004 (US). The big winner was IBM thta had almost twice as many as a distant number 2. There's some names I'm surprised not to see here that supposedly centre their corporate strategy around innovation such as 3M, although they've had a rough couple years.

Classes at U of U rock, the preparation does not ;-) Anyways I hope to get my digital camera this weekend so I'll soon be able to prove that it was freezing cold this morning with snow on the ground and now the sun is out, melted the snow and people don't even have their jackets on anymore. Tomorrow's forcast... dido :-)

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Some links and thoughts that have been pilling up:

During orientation one of the tech support guys, who's only job was to set up the laptop and projector for a presentation, couldn't get it to work. Looks like he's not the only one having problems, even billionaire and CEO of the largest software company in the world Bill Gates can't get his presentations to work all the time. I guess this puts our case studies class into perspective eh! :-)

This is a great article (once you get past the boring intro) on the lack of a standardized ranking and grading system for hospitals, doctors and medical care. Some great ideas in there.

And I thought some of MY flights were bad, take a look at this one.

A cool site showing cool T-shirts. This one caught my attention, it says "If I had a dollar for every time I'd have 60 cents, I'd be in Canada" (refering to the American exchange rate)... hilarious!

CNN ranks the top 25 non-medical inventions of the last 25 years, interesting but they totally leave you hanging for number one until a later date, I frigging hate when they do that! Sidenote: clearly Chrismica is the number one invention of not only the last 25 years but of our entire millenium ;-)

I'm getting excited for this years Winterlude festival in Ottawa! Especially for Beavertails and skating on the canal, which Julia tells me you can preview by clicking on the "Virtual Tour" button here.

This article is both humourous and insitefull on the perils of having a enforcement entity that has to police things that they have no direct or indirect knowledge or understanding of. They use the hilarious example of India's police force in charge of cybercrime and passport control personel.

Go Munich Go! That would be cool, watching Canada win the Olympic hockey gold in Munich ;-)

Didn't get enough of the Champion Canadian Junior hockey team? I know I didn't! Here's the Hockey Canada site with lots of pics, updates, vids etc. They even have an auction going for some of the jerseys and equipement the players used during the tournament, alas to far out of my reach economically.

The Arctic as the last major land grab race? (countries are clammering to claim sections of the Arctic because global warming is making resource mining a viable option sometime in the future) I think not, just look at Antartica and eventually space as "the final fronteer". I wonder if the captured water of the poles will someday hold more value than the minerals they protect.

Wired magazine's annual "Vapourware" awards. Vapourware is software that developers promise to deliver but that actually never arrive... I'm still waiting for my time machine.

Delta, and the majority of the airline industry, are in big trouble. I'm sure most of you have heard about their recent slashing of prices, particularly in the lucrative business traveler market, to lure customers, try and starve out competition and to survive bankrupcy. Didn't help with any of my flights though :-(

I saw a picture of the interior of this new "holiday dome" in the paper. It's located about an hour outside Berlin and I'd like to go check it out. An interesting idea but I'm not so sure it'll take hold in the country where the locals are the #1 travelers of the world.

Sunday, January 09, 2005

Wow, I took a look at the schedule I devised last week, wow. I think some of these courses are going to have to go, wow. What the hell was I thinking??

Anyways, in other quicky observations, I realize that having lived with girls for too long has made me trained, my roomate (I live with 2 guys now) asked me why the hell I keep putting the seat down... why do the hell I keep putting the seat down??

A great post with insight into resolutions to start off the new year, check it out.

Day 1: 6:06 AM start...

I forget who sent this to me but thanks. I've seen it before but it's pretty good:

Subject: Is Hell exothermic or endothermic??

The following is supposedly an actual question given on a University of Washington chemistry mid-term. The answer by one student was so "profound" that the professor shared it with colleagues, via the Internet, which is, of course, why we now have the pleasure of enjoying it as well.

Bonus Question: Is Hell exothermic (gives off heat) or endothermic (absorbs heat)?

Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs using Boyle's Law (gas cools when it expands and heats when it is compressed) or some variant. One student, however, wrote the following:

First, we need to know how the mass of Hell is changing in time. So we need to know the rate at which souls are moving into Hell and the rate at which they are leaving. I think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets to Hell, it will not leave. Therefore, no souls are leaving.
As for how many souls are entering Hell, let's look at the different religions that exist in the world today. Most of these religions state that if you are not a member of their religion, you will go to Hell. Since there is more than one of these religions and since people do not belong to more than one religion, we can project that all souls go to Hell.

With birth and death rates as they are, we can expect the number of souls in Hell to increase exponentially. Now, we look at the rate of change of the volume in Hell because Boyle's Law states that in order for the temperature and pressure in Hell to stay the same, the volume of Hell has to expand proportionately as souls are added. This gives two possibilities:

1. If Hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate at which souls enter Hell, then the temperature and pressure in Hell will increase until all Hell breaks loose.

2. If Hell is expanding at a rate faster than the increase of souls in Hell, then the temperature and pressure will drop until Hell freezes over.
So which is it? If we accept the postulate given to me by Teresa during my Freshman year that, " it will be a cold day in Hell before I sleep with you, and take into account the fact that I slept with her last night, then number 2 must be true, and thus I am sure that Hell is exothermic and has already frozen over.

The corollary of this theory is that since Hell has frozen over, it follows that it is not accepting any more souls and is therefore, extinct .. leaving only Heaven thereby proving the existence of a divine being which explains why, last night, Teresa kept shouting "Oh my God."


Vegas baby! VEGAS!!!!

So I'm sitting at home Friday night after the orientation party doing work for a couple hours and then I stop and think, Ross what the hell are you doing? It's Friday night of my first week in Utah and I'm sitting at home working on some crap for next week??

I was totally bumbed out so I jumped out of my PJ's and went to check out what was up on campus. It didn't take very long to get things rolling, I strolled on over to Heritage centre which was still pretty dead because school doesn't start until Monday, but I saw this girl I met on the shuttle bus on the way to the university so I went on over to get a game of pool or something going (remember Utah U is the king of board games, pool, bowling, movies, you name it, just no on campus bar). We continue our conversations and tour of Utah that we had started on the shuttle and hung out for a bit. A little while later a couple of her friends come on by and join us, the conversation was quickly deteriorating to "girl talk" when I came up with a great idea to spice things up, VEGAS!

Long story short, about 7 hours later we were dead tired and playing blackjack at Ceasars. After dropping a bundle and hitting the buffet hardcore we partied it up Saturday. Not bad for a weekend roadie! I'm not even tired (I have no idea why), but school starts full swing tomorrow so... I leave with a great quote that bitsy got in that really summed up my bad mood on Friday before turning things around and making the weekend truely great:

What you do speaks so loudly I cannot hear what you say.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Yeah it doens't make much sence in this context, deal with it ;-)

Friday, January 07, 2005

Well orientation has cum and gone, now I'm all up to date on:

1 - Utah is a dry campus, that's right no drinking at all on the premisis... guess they meant no drinking except beers on the mountain on your first night in the state ;-)

2 - Well with no on campus bar (hmm I guess Pforzheim didn't have one either, but when you can buy hefe in the mensa and gluwine is served by the students committee on cold days it ain't so bad!) I guess they need other things to occupy their time... you would not believe how many arcade games, large screen TV's, computer labs, theatre, movies and yes even bowling alleys there is on campus. No joke.

3 - Theft is the biggest crime on campus. Second biggest is being a virgin ;-)

4 - As far as I thought my on-campus housing was from my classes was I was wrong... it's farther.

5 - There are 256 squares on the roof of the conference room... yes 7 hours of orientation is way too much.

6 - Basically every other masters student is on a "reciprical exchange", meaning I'm the only one getting screwed with a $4000 tuition bill.

7 - My Dean is Canadian, unfortunatly he's from vancouver. At least he's not from Quebec, no offence to any of my fellow Canadian Quebecer friends :-) Actually a pretty cool guy, he braggs about basically having crossed the border to the US way back with hair to his knees driving a VW van... groovy baby!

8 - Utah is like window shopping, there's so much quality surrounding you but there's an invisible wall keeping you from touching the merchandise.

9 - The $40 in tokens I bought for the tram are basically useless since I got my free tram pass today... thanks for telling me that sooner eh!

10 - Did I mention that it's a dry campus?

My Favorites list is backing up with links and articles that I want to post but that will have to wait...

Update: Well a little off topic but I didn't get to mention how the Canadian Juniors won the World Championships (6-1 over our arch enemy the Russians). We (Canada) now holds every major championship, the World Championship, the World Cup, the Olympic Gold and now the World Juniors... sweet!!

Go Canada Go!!!

Thursday, January 06, 2005

I'm here! It's been a crazy couple of days getting everything organised and online for the cuming semester. Let's recap a bit:

Tuesday night after 3 airport transfers I finally arrived in Salt Lake City. It ws interesting to note that I had already met a guy on the second flight and a girl on the third flight (sitting right next to me) that both went to Utah, so I was getting the skinny on the campus and city right from experienced professionals. I met another guy while waiting what they said was going to be 20 minutes but turned out to be an hour and a half for the shuttle bus to the university, a fellow Canadian that noticed the Canadian flag sewed on my backpack. He informed me a little more about the two universities in the region, the total lack of an alcoholic scene (he tells me there's a whole lot of weekend night board games going on... yippie!), and other cool stuff to do (basically hoof it on down to Vegas... VEGAS!!

Yet more acquaitances on the shuttle ride to the university and so it turns out that by the time I actually made it to campus (10:45PM) I had already made plans for later that night, the upcoming weekend and the weekend after that. Yep, people here are pretty friendly and easy to meet. The only downside to this is that an exorbinant amount of women tend to smile at you all the time and you have no idea if they like you, are patronizing or in some kind of religeous trance.

Anyways, so I arrive at the university without having even set up any housing or told anyone that I was actually cuming (I called from the airport during one of my transfers to let the international advisor know that I would be arriving however there's no way they'd get the message until the next morning) so I hoof it on over to the university guest house. Turned out to be a sweet deal because the semester doesn't start until Monday (orientation for new MBA's on Friday) and so the place is basically empty. Consequently the hotel staff (undergrads trying to earn a buck over the holidays) are bored stiff and have nothing better to do than fill me in on the Utah scene. An hour or so later and some of the off duty staff are escorting me to, and I quote, "the best darned pizza place this side of the country) called "pie" as in a play on "pizza pie" and a cross with the mathematical sysmbol. For the record, it's pretty damn good pizza!

It should be noted that I had been in Utah for a total of about 4 hours at this point when I was first rejected being served a beer. ID required and I left my passport etc in my luggage at the uni inn, no Sam Adams for Ross with his za', a frosty cola with some ice please. Great, the detox of my liver had officially begun.

Speeding things up a little, the next two days consisted of me getting housing on campus (the farthest darndness place away from everything else on campus I might add), meeting with academic advisors, checking out downtown, getting supplies (I've been 3 times now and every time I still end up with a huge list of things I still need to get) and basically bumming around. The first time I took the trolley into town (built for the Olympics a couple years ago and goes straight from the uni to downtown), yes I have no car this semester, Germany has made me an environmentally changed man... actually the fact that my last car blew up along with its resale value probably has a bigger reason to do with it ;-) Anyways, the first time I ended up at the center of town which also happens to be the location of the Delta Center, home of the Utah Jazz. I exit the trolley to witness a stream of thousands of people entering the building, so I check it out and find out it's the Jazz vs. the 76's in about 30 mins... sweet! They lost but it was great to get to a game already on only my first full day in Salt Lake.

I'm getting tired (actually I'm off to pie), so I'll jsut quickly mention some wierd things I've noticed already:

1 - The shuttle drove straight through downtown SLC at like 10PM and it was totally dead. I thought I was in one of those scary movies where all of a sudden you wake up and not another breathing sole is left in the city. Deserted! (granted it was Tuesday night, but I mean it was TOTALLY deserted, no need to fear walking after dark here!)

2 - On the same shuttle drive they explained how every road is named only by its distance from the central temple. No joke, 2000 East, 2100 East, 600 South, 700 South, etc etc. Every single one. Also you'll notice that the width of the roads is HUGE, apparently to accomidate teams of horses so they can turn around in intersections. Finally there's buckets of orange flags at every crossway so walkers can take one and wave it at cars as they cross the street... just to make sure they don't run them over, not mentioning the fact that noone hardly ever breaks 50 clicks in this city. Totally wierd.

3 - The school is located above the whole city on the mountain, and you all know by now my affinity for hills and mountains overlooking a great view. You've got to see the lights of the entire city (I'm working on getting a digital camera, it's time I stopped being the last person on the planet to own even a normal camera). Anyways the view is utterly amazing, both at night with the lights and during the day with the sunlight and fresh snow... AWSOME!

4 - It's pie time, more later...

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

101 Things

I love this idea 101 things to do in 1001 days. Some of my favorites from their list:

4 - Build up 6 pack abs.
11 - climb a mountain.
18 - Do 100 pushups.
68 - Release a message in a bottle.
101 - Watch the sunrise with someone special.

I've got a ton of my own to add, many having to do with new travels I want to do (many already in the works!). On tap already this year is Germany (many times including for World Cup 2006!), Sicily, France (unfortunatly ;-), Ireland (extended this time!), Iceland (got my tix yesturday), Vancouver/Seattle (again, got the tix yesturday), Netherlands (another Amsterdam run and also Rotterdam for work), London... am I forgetting any? (I don't include our planned excursions within Ontario despite our plans as that's just going out in "our own backyard" :-)

Those ones are for sure (baring some catastophe), but also on tap near the end of 2006/beginning 2007 is a trip down under to OZ and also South America/Antartica. I can't wait! (Update: looks like it's going to be end of January 07 so I can be there for their national holiday which I believe is on the 26th of Jan)

I'm too lazy to go back to one of my posts last Feb with the things I wanted to get done by the end of the year, needless to say I doubt I achieved many of them :-( I'll get around to making a new/revised list next week closer to the 1st end of Jan. Despite the fact that I didn't get many planned things accomplished, I don't think I could have jammed much more into 2005. What an amazing year!

Update 2: This new book from Lonely Planet called "Blue List" looks totally cool with amazing things/adventures/experiences to check out around the world. Anyone have a copy for old EuroRoss? ;-) I'll definatly have to check some of those out and get them on the 2006 "to do" list! :-)

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I'm off to Utah! Good luck to everyone else starting the last chapter of their MBA experiences, I'll see you on the other side...

Monday, January 03, 2005

Here's a pic I got from Jersey Jim of the Utah campus where I'll be going... cool