06 December 2009

Poking around the internet

I poke around the internet in a quest for inspiration and story ideas all the time. Sometimes, I find things that don't quite warrant a post of their own. Here's a handful of them.

Patricia Gray is a Vancouver, British Columbia interior designer who's idolized on both sides of the 49th parallel and with good reason.

She wrote a column about color trends and I'm happy to report that I used this palette in a bathroom design a week before I saw her post. I love being on target with a color scheme. Grey and yellow is this year's blue and brown. Believe it. From Patricia's blog:
Key colours for the Farrow & Ball Industrial 2010 Color Trends:

Farrow & Ball Down Pipe No.26
Farrow & Ball Off-Black No.57
Farrow & Ball Pavilion Gray No.242
Farrow & Ball Cornforth White No.228
Farrow & Ball Setting Plaster No.231
Farrow & Ball Orangery No.70
Farrow & Ball Babouche No.223
Farrow & Ball Blackened No.2011
Read Patricia Gray Interior Design for some fantastic guidance on color and all other aspects of interior design.

I wrote about underwater mortgages and the ethical and moral dilemmas swirling around the idea of a planned default on a bad mortgage this week. In fact, I wrote about it twice: on Sunday and on Tuesday. Those posts opened up a really great comments discussion afterward.

Dirk Shad, Times photographer

Well the whole thing was prompted by a wire story from last Saturday's St. Petersburg Times. In today's issue of the same paper, the Deputy Business Editor, Becky Bowers, wrote an essay on why she and her husband are staying put in their underwater mortgage. That she lives up the street from me and that we share a love for this neighborhood is a bonus. Thank you Becky.

My great friend Tom is a consummate Manhattanite and loves New York with a passion I envy. Tom sends me glimpses of day to day life in that great city regularly and the other day he sent me this video.

This is the Christmas display at Saks' and this video features the actual music piped into the street for this Christmas spectacular. It's no wonder tour buses carry many thousands of people to that great city every day.

Once of my Twitter pals posted a link to this brilliant column about marble as a counter material.

The blog is called The Petch House and it details the renovation of an old home. The post I'm linking to is as impassioned a defense of marble as any I've seen and he says everything I do about the stuff. It's a good read and I plan to throw it in the face of the next person who starts telling me how readily marble scratches and stains. Here's that link again. And just for good measure, here it is one more time.

Eric Schmidt is one of the founders of Google. He's also my homeboy. In yesterday's Wall Street Journal he delivered what can only be called a beat down to Rupert Murdoch and the rest of the self-immolators in print media.

I quote:
With dwindling revenue and diminished resources, frustrated newspaper executives are looking for someone to blame. Much of their anger is currently directed at Google, whom many executives view as getting all the benefit from the business relationship without giving much in return. The facts, I believe, suggest otherwise.
Bravo. Here's the link back to Eric's article. TV news people, pay attention because you're next.

I love Twitter. There I said it. It took a month of playing around with it to finally grasp what it is and six months later, Tweeting is so ingrained in my day that I can no sooner imagine the day without it as I can imagine my not blogging. Twitter also makes me nuts because it's one more thing to keep up with. Shane Nickerson is a comedian who's similarly hooked on Twitter. He's got a potty mouth and he's hilarious. Do not  play this video if the word "fuck" offends you.

F Twitter from Shane Nickerson on Vimeo.

Don't let the 140 character limit fool you. I have made some really deep connections with some great people I could have never known otherwise.

Finally, the brilliant and gracious Nancie over at Mosaic Art Now posted this gem yesterday.
Rome (AP) Italian officials have unveiled new discoveries in an ancient Roman luxury complex filled with priceless mosaics, elegant porticos and thermal baths. The 1,800 square-meter (2,000 square-yard) complex, dating from the 2nd to 4th centuries, has been excavated intermittently starting in 2004, when the ruins were accidentally discovered during renovations of a Renaissance palazzo that now stands above them. In the latest digging campaign, which began in March, archaeologists uncovered a palatial room decorated with precious marble and a colorful mosaic made with half a million tiles brought from all over the Roman Empire. The 16th century Palazzo Valentini, which sits on top of the ruins in downtown Rome, houses local government offices. The ancient complex will be open to the public from Friday through Jan. 6, before closing again for further explorations.
Get thee to Rome before January 6th. If I can get the stars to align, I'll be back in Rome in June, but I'll have missed this once in a lifetime wonder.

If you have never stood in front of an ancient mosaic or other piece of ancient art, please find a way to do so. The word awesome is horribly overused, but it's the only way to describe such an experience. Seeing ancient art is the best way I can think of to stare ancient people in the face and see a reflection of yourself staring back. Roman culture is the very bedrock of western culture and to know that frees you from the burden of thinking that you're so unique that you're alone in history. None of us is alone, we stand connected to every other human being who has ever walked the face of the earth. Our joy, our pain, our love, our lust, our strain, our suffering and our triumphs are the same as they've ever been.

Read Nancie's wonderful blog, Mosaic Art Now. It's part of the great art annual of the same name, Mosaic Art Now. Speaking of Mosaic Art Now, wait until you see what's in store in the 2010 edition. More details to come on that, believe me.

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