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Today is Half-Fall!

Friends,
The equinox is an awkward day. Half-summer and half-fall, it is both yet neither. It brings that elusive perfect balance of daytime and nighttime, blanketing the whole world and everyone in it with the same number of daylight minutes. On this last summer’s aurora, I admired phosphor during my pre-dawn jog and felt the crisp air had just the right bite. As seasons change, it occurs to me change is a necessity for living things. Sure, it is tempting to try to hang-on to what was, still, I prefer to think of today as half-fall -I suppose that makes me an uptimist. As we mull modifications of all sorts, it is comforting to rely on the comfort food that has become somewhat of a constant Friday morning staple. So, come enjoy a warm beverage of your choice and a donut and look ahead with me to the beautiful season ahead. Happy Friday!
Recent posts

Ring, Ring!

Friends, Last night around 2:55 AM, the space probe Cassini intentionally crashed into Saturn and was destroyed in its atmosphere –may she rest in pieces. Earth’s six ton envoy orbited the gas giant for 13 years, making fascinating discoveries. Seven new moons, extraterrestrial liquid lakes (on the moon Titan) and a salty ocean (in the moon Enceladus). Through its eyes we saw the hexagonal north pole storm change colors, the honeycomb structures of Hyperion riddle us, the dumpling-shaped moon Pan make us salivate and solved the mystery of the Ying Yang moon Iapetus. Of all the pictures this scientific station sent, my favorite was taken on July 19, 2013. I hope you were looking up and smiling because the white spec seen below the rings is Earth -i.e. us! (think of Cassini as a $3.26 Billion selfie stick). Then there were the myriad detailed images of the donut-like Cronian rings, which bring me to the reason for this note. In honor of this historic event, this morning we have a dozen p…

Donuts Arrived, Consume Avidly (DACA)

Friends, Sorry for such a long-winded and weighty note on a donut Friday. As an Immigrant, I may be overly-sensitive to the current immigration debate, recently fueled by President Trump’s ending of DACA, so I felt compelled to get my thoughts out there. I won’t dwell on technicalities (i.e. whether the executive branch has the authority to implement a policy that contravenes the legislative framework we live under) and will forgo the “dreamers are a sympathetic group” window dressing. I will focus, instead, on trying to debunk some of the misconceptions and myths that seem to be the basis for our inability to pass comprehensive, humane immigration reform. I respectfully submit these views as my own and I understand reasonable people can see things from different perspectives. I don’t expect anyone else to agree with me and I certainly won’t count it against you if you don’t. As I see it, there are five fallacies that anchor the views of those who would oppose changing the status quo…

A Day to Honor Birthing Pains

Friends, If anyone deserves a holiday it’s women in labor. And, alas, they got one! On Monday we celebrate that experience which is, allegedly, almost as painful as the common cold is to men. As to why the 50% of the population that is incapable of sustaining this experience gets to share in the R&R that comes from this obligatory day off, I suppose it’s one of life’s mysteries -like why the tooth fairy doesn’t give adults who lose teeth money. Whatever the reason, I hope your plans for the long weekend include a moment to thank all the mothers who underwent labor so you and I could be here today. I also hope they include you swinging-by the office today so you could get a donut.
Happy Friday!

Smarter Donuts

Friends, Spammers think I’m dumb. Literally. The preponderance of my spam promotes pills to make me smarter (328% smarter by one account!). The exception was an offer to outfit me with the ultimate power-woman wardrobe –how do they know I don’t have one?— but, I digress. I suppose that means they’ve realized I don’t suffer from E.D., that I’m not interested in a Russian paramour’s risqué pictures, don’t trade on anonymous insider information and don’t care to help them abscond gold from an African autocracy. These pills sound too good to be true. A feeble minded person (IQ ≤70) need only double their IQ to become a genius (IQ ≥140), and even if the alleged 4x IQ boost came from a baseline of severe retardation (IQ 40), the pill taker would become Stephen-Hawking-smart (IQ 160). So, I can’t help but wonder why these spammers are not consuming their own product. If they were, they could surely improve their grammar, imagine a more compelling sales pitch and figure-out a way to prevent …

Donut Conundrum

Friends, If I were to give you my Rocky Mountain National Park landscape print by Ansel Adams, you'd be a work-of-art richer and I'd be a wall decoration poorer. Common sense, right? Yet, every day that print hangs on my wall it becomes less novel and delivers slightly less enjoyment to me. On the other hand, in gifting it to you, I gain your priceless reaction and your gratitude. Furthermore, your relative enjoyment of the photo would surely be greater than mine (due to the novelty) and I would still get to keep my memories of that print. It seems to me that act of giving generates greater utility across both the giver and the receiver than would clinging to my precious possession. I suppose that's why they say it's better to give than to receive. It's so simple, yet that's not how we behave at all. We work so hard to grow our collection of material goods -and take them for granted the minute we acquire them- as our rainy day fund approaches great flood prepa…

Taita Donuts!

Friends,
Tuesday, I took the opportunity to go on a hike I’d been longing to enjoy with my daughter. It had been over a decade since I ventured up the seldom trekked eight mile, 2,500 ft. vertical gain route to 13,000 foot high lake Taita Chugo. The route starts innocently enough with a scenic drive down a stone-paved backcountry road which ends at lake Llaviuco. Walk through the natural vegetation tunnel, past the lake and you’re officially on the trail. The first couple of miles are a stroll up a gently sloping narrow river valley, framed by two rugged mountains. At 11,000 feet, the crisp early morning air and overnight dew soon prove the running shoes and jeans a poor choice of attire. By the time we reach the cliff-framed waterfall that marks the transition to the intermediate stage, we’re drenched from the waist down. Fortunately, the activity keeps us warm, so we venture into the cloud forest, up a thin black mud path that might pass for a game trail. If fairies and elves exist…