Showing posts from May, 2018

Starbucks will close for a conversation on race and bias. Will it make a difference?

I admit it, I spend a lot of time in Starbucks.  When I'm in Honolulu, I tend to wake up about 6, and walk a third of a mile up the valley to the Manoa Starbucks.  There, I get a coffee and a Honolulu Star-Advertiser newspaper, catch up on local and global events, check out the tide tables, then get out the computer to begin with the emails and do some writing.  The clientele is primarily people of Asian descent, which makes sense, since 50%+ of the population of the valley is... people of Asian descent!   Manoa Valley consists primarily of people of Asian descent, which is similar to urban Honolulu. The majority of people of Asian descent report Japanese ancestry, with Chinese and Filipino ancestry rounding out the top three. Manoa Valley around 1900.  The primary use of the land was agriculture - taro and rice.  This photo is on display in the Manoa Library.  Manoa Valley, 1935 . The Manoa Starbucks fills in the morning with faculty and students fro

The politics of non-alcoholic beer - a continuing saga of misinformation

When our number 1 son, Wesley, left for college in 2011, we were pretty sure we gave him the skills to avoid the "Animal House" style of binge drinking.  Except for 1 or 2 times over 4 years (that he admitted), I think we were successful. At the University of Utah, as with all state colleges and universities in Utah, there is a policy that prohibits drinking on campus: "Under University policy, students are subject to discipline for use, possession, or distribution of alcoholic beverages of any type on University premises except as expressly permitted by law and University regulations." The regulations for the dorms are even more specific: "The University of Utah is a dry campus. Use, possession or distribution of alcoholic beverages of any type, including beer, on University premises is prohibited except as expressly permitted by law and University regulations. This includes empty alcohol containers, as well as alcohol paraphernalia, such as, but not l

Signage, chapter 2

Reusable sign placed on parked bikes in Rock Creek Park, DC.  It looked like cyclists toss the signs to the ground.  They are picked up and used again! The main purpose of signs is to communicate, to send a message.  Here are some recent messages! This sign was at the entrance to one of the Smithsonian's museums.  No guns and knives, no pepper spray, and no pot!  I'm surprised that marijuana got a reference when tobacco did not.   Bison as carbon farmers?  That's a great way to thank them, turning them into expensive jerky. Sign posted in a Georgetown ice cream shop.  Watch for the rabid raccoon! Posters on the wall in the George Washington University Law School's Student Bar Association office. Expectations? Well, it's not a sign, but who doesn't like ice cream? Truth in advertising. Caroline with sign honoring her Auntie BB . Do Tahitians thank us for this import? French Polynesia has one o

The tassel is worth the hassle!

Elizabeth Upton, Katelin Shugart-Schmidt, and Michelle Ramus celebrate graduation from GW Law School with their Juris Doctor degrees. Photo by Leigh Ann Burdett. Our technological advances in health and science have been wondrous things, with iPhones, the observation of  gravitational waves , and MRIs all resulting from these efforts. But one thing that hasn't happened is the development of that miracle device that you attach to your head, turn it on, watch the blinking lights and listen to the humming and,  voilĂ  , you are smarter. How do you  boost brain power ? Dang!  Just like a century ago, if you want to become educated, you need to get specialized training.  For many, this involves attending a college or university.  Except for the " diploma mills " that are willing to sell you a meaningless piece of paper for a fee, there is no shortcut here.  You need to study, and there are people who evaluate the quality and quantity of your knowledge.  After