The people we admire…


There are people that our society tells us that we should admire, and there are people whom we should admire.

We desire both to be respectable and to be respected. We dread both to be contemptible and to be contemned. But, upon coming into the world, we soon find that wisdom and virtue are by no means the sole objects of respect; nor vice and folly, of contempt. We frequently see the respectful attentions of the world more strongly directed towards the rich and the great, than towards the wise and the virtuous. We see frequently the vices and follies of the powerful much less despised than the poverty and weakness of the innocent. To deserve, to acquire, and to enjoy the respect and admiration of mankind, are the great objects of ambition and emulation. Two different roads are presented to us, equally leading to the attainment of this so much desired object; the one, by the study of wisdom and the practice of virtue; the other, by the acquisition of wealth and greatness. Two different characters are presented to our emulation; the one, of proud ambition and ostentatious avidity. the other, of humble modesty and equitable justice. Two different models, two different pictures, are held out to us, according to which we may fashion our own character and behaviour; the one more gaudy and glittering in its colouring; the other more correct and more exquisitely beautiful in its outline: the one forcing itself upon the notice of every wandering eye; the other, attracting the attention of scarce any body but the most studious and careful observer. They are the wise and the virtuous chiefly, a select, though, I am afraid, but a small party, who are the real and steady admirers of wisdom and virtue. The great mob of mankind are the admirers and worshippers, and, what may seem more extraordinary, most frequently the disinterested admirers and worshippers, of wealth and greatness.
Adam Smith, Theory of Moral Sentiments (Part I, Section III, Chapter III)

How complaining reshapes us


“Complaining affects us. It shames us. It exposes us… It reveals the hardness of our hearts. It narrows our focus to rest only on ourselves. It blinds us to who God is and to what our true needs are.”
Ronnie Martin, Stop Your Complaining

I hate to listen to others complain incessantly. It may grates on me. It wears me out. I hate it more that I’m a complainer. I hate it when I realize that I’m bending someone’s ear to drone on and on about my own imagined insults and slights. I hate what complaining does to me, to my heart and to my relationships with others and with God.

Jurassic World

Saw it. It was good. Not as good as Avengers: Age of Ultron – by a long shot. I would go see Avengers: Age of Ultron in theaters, again… for the third time!

Shoes – I want to know who made those shoes Bryce Dallas Howard wears. Amazing! She makes it across the entire island without breaking a heel, and never stumbles. If that company makes a black combat boot, I’ll order them tomorrow!

“Other Pizza” – a creation

I have this problem – a cheese pizza is a sin against pizza. It’s like someone started a pizza and got distracted with the laundry. It’s like photographing the sky without clouds. It’s like rain without wet. A pizza is a place to hold your toppings while you eat them. Picking the toppings, though…. a pepperoni pizza is just a place to start. The art in making a great pizza is knowing when to stop and what all needs doing in between. I give you my “Jody’s Other Pizza.” Perhaps some day I’ll divulge the recipe for “Jody’s Really Good Pizza.”


  • Pepperoni
  • Sausage
  • Jalapeños
  • Black olives
  • Pine nuts
  • Bacon (added 2014/11/03)
  • Topped with extra cheese (to hold the toppings on)

A “print” of a “Jody’s Other Pizza” produced by Piccolino Restaurant in Hagerman, NM


Cognitive Bias or Heuristic?

Tom Peters linked to this Wikipedia page this morning: Wikipedia – List of Cognitive Biases

As I read through them, I was struck by the fact that not only am I susceptible to all of them, but many also double as heuristics – or ways that we can “cheat” for information that we don’t have or don’t have time to research. Simple Heuristics That Make Us Smart

Question: So, is it a cognitive bias or a heuristic?

Answer: Sometimes, both.

Books Read

In 2008 I started keeping a list of books that I have read. I wish I had started sooner. I’m very happy that I did not wait longer. 2014 was my best reading year ever. I did “cheat” a little by recording every book of the Bible separately, but I have no regret on that score. I hope that 2015 is as good.


The fish tank returns


The Things finally moved the Wii fish tank from the original Wii (which suffered a disk drive failure and was replaced) moved onto the Wii U. This fish tank was written by a little software company called Hudson Soft which is now defunct. This fish tank ran on a hand-me-down Wii, on a hand-me-down TV in front of the pharmacy counter at the Medicine Shop in Roswell for a couple of years until the store closed. It has pacified countless customers and entertained countless children for countless hours. It’s still my favorite Wii “game.”

My Favorite Bands – Dallas String Quartet

I’m always shocked when I realize that I have become attached to a new musician or musical group – and why.

If you are not familiar with Dallas String Quartet, you should be. Their music is a classical-pop fusion that I find delicious. I love classical, but I quickly grow tired of it. I hate pop. Mix the two together, and you have something old but different. I really enjoy it.

DSQ Electric – Rolling in the Deep:

I also appreciate the way the musicians are completely self conscious about the camera.