Archive for December, 2009

moment of zen revisited

Thursday, December 31st, 2009

an unabashed rip-off of jon stewart, my moment of zen is a short downhill run that exhilarates and gives me a blast of cool breeze about 2/3 of the way through my daily ride…if there are no cars, no pedestrians, no puddles…i get to blast down the hill and cross the intersection, go around the end of the speed bump and collect bugs with my teeth…

albert camus in the myth of sisyphus (Le Mythe de Sisyphe) describes how sisyphus, having offended the gods, is sentenced to pushing a rock up a hill for all eternity…when he reaches the top, the rock rolls down the other side and he has to go down and push it up again…

the lesson to be extracted from this, beyond the unbearably depressing existentialism of wartime europe…the lesson is that sisyphus should take his pleasures while walking down the hill…like the far side cows, don’t forget to stop and eat the flowers…

this is my moment of zen, when i can ride down the hill without stopping…today was a good day…

post mortem

Sunday, December 27th, 2009

got on the road at 7 today, not a car in sight, picked up my english language sunday paper with the newsweek insert

after a heavy rain the puddles had pretty much dried up, unlike yesterday which was a wet ride…my moment of zen unmarred except i had to bump over the lomo de burro, what they call speed bumps here, to avoid water in the gutter…the glass was gone from the road, swept up or ground in, all things tranquil at 7 am in san isidro, buenos aires, 17/12/2009…rollin’ on the river

december 25

Friday, December 25th, 2009

merry christmas, feliz navidad, good ride this morning, got out a bit early 8 am, not hot yet, lots of broken glass in the street, remnants of all night parties at the beach parks, some parties still going on, hundreds of young people still drinking, smiling drunken grins, beers in hand…

streets, parking lots and parks full of trash from the night before, broken bottles, rubbish strewn everywhere, definitely a cleanup project for tomorrow…

almost no cars, my moment of zen uninterrupted by traffic, rode pretty hard the whole way, pondering on getting visa applications together, organizing a move back to the states, the security here is a real problem, although medical care is cheap, there is no real economic opportunity, there ain’t no deals here in argentina, people want top dollar for tiny houses with no land, tiny apartments with no storage space, crappy old cars…in the states if you search you can find good deals…


Saturday, December 19th, 2009

here in argentina the bidet is ever-present, in every home…even if it is a tiny bathroom, there are retractable bidets that can be installed…everybody has one…part of the european culture here…truly one of the un-challengeable, uncompromised benefits of civilization, right up there with refrigeration and hot running water

sadaam’s bidet

remembering the gulf war when sadaam’s palaces were overrun by coalition troops, cnn featured a tour of one of these palaces, and the shot lingered for the longest time on the bidet…maybe it had gold-plated faucets, marble floors, i don’t remember…what i remember is how long the shot lingered…

as if to say, such decadence, look at the opulent splendor in which this guy lived, it’s about time somebody gave him his comeuppance… hell, we’re americans, we live in a frontier society, we counquered the indigenous people, settled the west…hell, we crap in an outhouse

so every time i use the appliance, i am reminded of jack kerouac, whom I read 40 years ago…who said in Big Sur

“People in America have all these racks of dry-cleaned clothes like you say on their trips, they spatter Eau de Cologne all over themselves, they wear Ban and Aid or whatever it is under their armpits, they get aghast to see a spot on a shirt or a dress, they probably change underwear and socks maybe even twice a day, they go around all puffed up and insolent thinking themselves the cleanest people on earth and they’re walkin around with dirty azzoles — Isnt that amazing?…..The President of the United States, the big ministers of state, the great bishops and shmishops and big shots everywhere, down to the lowest factory worker with all his fierce pride, movie stars, executives and great engineers and presidents of law firms and advertising firms with silk shirts and neckties and great expensive traveling cases in which they place these various expensive English imported hair brushes and shaving gear and pomades and perfumes are all walking around with dirty azzoles! All you gotta do is simply wash yourself with soap and water! it hasnt occurred to anybody in America at all! it’s one of the funniest things I’ve ever heard of! dont you think it’s marvelous that we’re being called filthy unwashed beatniks but we’re the only ones walkin around with clean azzoles?”


Sunday, December 13th, 2009

rode early yesterday, real early, about 6:30 am, it was a bit brisk but no cars on the road on a saturday, had two green parrots (“loros” here in argentina) land right in my path, they took off, a common sight

waited til 8 this morning sunday, still no traffic at all, sun not so much in my eyes, balmy breeze going out, turned into a strong headwind coming back, forgot the sweet bread, hit the bakery about 10, it was crowded…guess that just shows the schedule here, people sleep late, i’m a morning person, no signs of that changing any time soon…

still thinking about 2 projects, working on a comparative review (well, more of a listing) of over 100 different medical software products, ranging from strictly billing software to emr (electronic medical records) to full practice management products, dental, chiropractic, physical therapy/rehabilitation…i’ve got about 25 of them up and running, format in place, glossary of terms more or less done, thinking about overview, how to present a cohesive general description of what this stuff does…may not be possible, there’s a lot of specifics…


Friday, December 11th, 2009

good ride today, realized i hadn’t posted for a few days…missed a couple days riding, rained one day, had meetings…went early this morning, weather getting hotter as we come into mid-december, had my moment of zen this morning, more or less, a car pulled in front of me but didn’t have to slow down to miss it…

daydreaming about… daydreaming…never been much of an athlete, through 6 years junior high and high school gym class, i was aways one of the slowest kids, hated it at the time…always the last to be picked on the playground choosing up teams…i remember one time, playing kickball or some other rubber ball game, the ball hit me upside the head…i was just daydreaming, not paying attention to the game

still daydreaming 50 years later, daydreaming on my bike, daydreaming at the computer keyboard, never had much discipline but trying now to focus these dreams toward an end, a goal…becoming an expert…a guy i used to work with, top engineer in his field, said to be an “expert” you just have to know a little more than the people you are talking to…well on the web there are all kinds, so it may take a bit more than that

here’s the deal…working on 2 feature series for, the first to be titled something like “outstanding innovators in health care today”, the second “comprehensive review of electronic medical software programs”…gotta put on my journalism hat, first structure both series, figure out what i want to ask and what i want to say, both are very deep pools to dive into, i am nowhere near an expert in either, but should be able to marshal enough facts in an organized fashion to make it sound good

(thinking about) going viral

Friday, December 4th, 2009

chain jammed today, otherwise good ride, moment of zen without aggravation, spent the ride thinking about marketing…

this is the year of marketing, the year of marketing dangerously, starting september 21 the spring solstice, the first day of spring here in the southern hemisphere, the plan has been and still is to market what i already have going, to use what i have and make sure to tell people about it, twitter @#$%&*ing up links today, waiting on feedback today from a banner agency in iowa and a programmer in belarus, thinking about going viral, how to do it, how to interest the masses, what do people want?

decided to publish getting married in argentina, there you have it…

rollin’ on the river

Thursday, December 3rd, 2009

rollin’ on the river today, finding peace of mind along the shores of Rio de la Plata, container ships plying off shore, wind blowing flowers off the trees, escaping for an hour the craziness of one of the largest cities in the western hemisphere, escaping the cubicle where i spend too many hours, not enough time, not enough hours in the day

today i rode out against a fierce headwind, luckily the wind held and had a tailwind coming back, trees now in full leaf, blossoms mostly gone, had my moment of zen, there is one downhill run with a crossing at the bottom, sometimes cross-traffic but today it was clear downhill all the way, roads pretty much dry, not too many crazy drivers out there