Sears Tower to Open Glass Observation Boxes on 103rd Story

July 2nd, 2009

News Story:

Thursday July 3rd, the Sears Tower will open new observation boxes made of 5 sides of solid glass, including the glass floor, to the public.  They are located on the 103rd story, 1353 feet above the city of Chicago.  There are 3 such boxes, each able to hold 5 tons, and are being called “The Ledge”.  Each bay is 4 feet deep by 10 feet high by 10 feet wide and can hold 6 adults without crowding.  The idea came about from visitors to the observation deck having the habit of leaning against the glass with their foreheads to get a view of the bottom of the tower.

Commentary:

This was such a clever way to make a somewhat dated Chicago Tourist attraction unusual and exciting again.  Not an experience for the faint of heart, however, I think I would have a tough time taking the first step onto that glass floor, and I don’t consider myself afraid of heights at all.

Fighting in the streets of Iran following elections

June 13th, 2009

News Story:

Election results have come in for the position of president of the country of Iran.  A landslide victory was attributed to the current president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, citing a 2 to 1 victory over the challenger, Mir Hossein Mousavi.

Irregularities in the election have been cited, especially the rapid rate at which votes were tallied in comparison to past elections.

Supporters of the reform candidate, who are a part of the “green” movement,which is mostly a youth-driven campaign, are rioting in the streets protesting what they consider to be a fraudulent election.

The US also doubts the validity of the election results, suspecting election irregularities as well.

The Iranian law enforcement has been jamming text messages, blocking websites in support of Mousavi as well as Facebook, and has cut off mobile phones in Tehran.

Commentary:

This type of news makes me thankful to live in a country in which we have such freedoms that they do not have in Iran, and yet we take them for granted every day.  So much so, that we are beginning to allow our current government administration as well as the previous administration to take those freedoms away from us.

I sincerely hope that Iranians win the freedom that they so desperately want, and don’t have it witheld from them by a corrupt incumbent government as well as religious leaders.

Dirty pools and dead lawns=jail time?

June 9th, 2009

News Story:

The town of Indio, California recently passed legislation making it a crime to neglect homes that are in the foreclosure process.  This town currently has one in ten homes that are in default or in foreclosure.  The hope is to keep banks who are responsible for the foreclosed homes from allowing them to fall into disrepair, or become an eyesore in a community where home values have already declined severely.

Things like algae infested swimming pools, dead lawns, tall weeds, broken windows and fallen trees are now being monitored by uniformed officers who issue citations with fines to the owners of these foreclosed homes that are being neglected.

Commentary:

It’s a shame that this type of thing is necessary, as it is in the best interest of the banks holding these propertys to keep them well maintained so that they are attractive to buyers, and the bank can sell them.  This is also another thing that requires public funding, so that officers can patrol for infractions, and then the fines must be issued…etc.

Is living in an expensive suburb worth the cost?

June 9th, 2009

News Story:

With the downturn in the US economy, job losses, and losses in the stock market, some residents of very affluent suburban towns are beginning to rethink the value of being in a prestigious area.  Living in such wealthy neighborhoods comes with many additional hidden costs beyond the cost of a jumbo mortgage.  Often, there are also high property taxes to pay for excellent public school districts, high maintenance costs of a large home and high utility bills.

Many residents of affluent neighborhoods and towns also fall prey to Keeping-up-with-the Joneses syndrome, which entails having a country club membership, shopping for high end merchandise regularly, driving expensive cars, and employing staff such as a cleaning lady, landscapers, nanny etc.

Commentary:

I think it’s great that many are rethinking such conspicuous consumption, especially when many have overextended themselves financially in order to give the appearance of being wildly successful.  We in America need to return to a more practical way of life, in which it’s fine to have some additional comforts in life, but we need to be saving much more money for our futures rather than squandering all that we have, and then some in order to create a smoke screen that makes others think we are much better off financially than we truly are.  Moderation is the key.

Calvin Borel attempts to get third Triple Crown

June 4th, 2009

News Story:

Calvin Borel will attempt at the Belmont Stakes to become the first Jockey ever to win the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes on two different horses.

Borel has been a jockey for 26 years now, and has struggled with an eating disorder common among jockeys known as heaving or flipping.  This is basically throwing up meals in order to maintain their impossibly small frames required in order to be a jockey.  Borel is 5′5″ and 112 lbs.  He spent time in a rehabilitation facility learning to eat smaller meals, and to stop heaving in order to be much more healthy.

Commentary:

The world will be watching Borel and Mine that Bird, hoping that he can achieve this amazing feat.  This is already one for the record books regardless.  I wish him the best of luck!

EMPOWERED MOM

June 3rd, 2009

Here is an opinion blog know as EMPOWERED MOM. It has the opinions, thoughts, rants and raves of a mom. I found many interesting blog entries on this site that both moms and non-moms can enjoy. One of the most interesting blog entries that I found on this site was about the effect of third hand smoking. I did not even know what third hand smoking was until I visited this site. I suggest that everyone take a look at this blog for the sake of their own health. Another interesting blog entry was about a Blogging 101 Workshop. I guess everything needs an entry level instruction, including blogging. This blogger had completed this course and I am sure received a bunch of good instructions. I am not sure how much this will help the quality of the blog, but I am sure there will be an increase in the quality due to this course. If you have a little time and are curious as to what moms are thinking, check out this blog.

Asian Financial and Business Blog

June 3rd, 2009

If you are in search of a blog about Asia’s financial and business environment, a great source to look at is marketoutbox.com. This site has 5 main categories: Business, General, Sector Reviews, Stock Picks and Warren Buffet. Each category covers a wide variety of topics. This blog has been in operation since January of 2008, making it almost one and a half years old. In the business section I found recent blogs on General Motors, China’s manufacturing sector and the expansion of franchised based companies. The sector review category contained blogs on utilities, autos, construction and many other sectors. There was very good information in this area. The stock picks offered small tidbits of information on various companies and why that information would impact stock price. Finally in the Warren Buffet area, blogs ranged from Warren’s invest ideas and strategies to the performance and commentary on Warren’s company, Berkshire Hathaway. If you are looking for this type of information, check out marketoutbox.com and you will surely be happy with the blogs you find.

California lawmakers pass bills on animal welfare

June 1st, 2009

News Story:

California legistators have passed 2 new bills that deal with animal welfare especially that concerned with livestock.  These bills came about as a result of California Prop 13 which achieved landslide support from the voters of the state last November.  Prop 13 was an initiative on the treatment of farm animals.   These new bills will outlaw the practice of docking the tails of dairy cows, will crack down on caged egg-laying hens, the feedlot practice of feeding antibiotics to animals that aren’t sick, and would also crack down on puppy mills and increase penalties for poaching wildlife.

Commentary:

It’s great that the state of California is able to get such action on an issue, and this is an important issue.  How about improving the quality of education in California, minimizing traffic and tackling other issues that affect the day-to-day existence of California residents as well??  Oh, wait, they have no budget because they squander it all giving it away to every small special interest group instead of meeting the needs of the larger part of the state’s population….

Blogging Tips - SEO and Personal Weblog.

June 1st, 2009

If you are looking for a great site that will give you blogging tips for search engine optimization and personal blogs, check out quick-est.com.

On the search engine optimization side of the blog, there were many good articles.  There was a great post about Matt Cutt’s opinion of where search engine optimization is headed to, there was information about link strategies and other great basic search engine optomization information.

On the personal blogging tips, there was information on how to get more readers, more subscribers and just make your blog seen by more people.  Posts on directories strategies and many other forms of blog promotion.

I would suggest that any aspiring or current blogger check this site out for important information on how to make their blog better and be seen by more people.  These two issues can determine whether a blog will succeed or fail.  Check it out, and have some fun.

Unique Little Blog

June 1st, 2009

I came across this blog,  I SAY WHAT I FEEL. It has a lot of useful little information and general opinions. One thing this blog focuses on is tips for other bloggers. These tips range from making money, to getting more traffic to your blog and more. There are also several helpful website reviews where you can find out information an neat little websites. Also on this blog, there appears to be a ton of information on college related testing in India. In addition to all this stuff there are several links and blog entries on shopping. If you have a little time to kill and are looking for some of this type of information, this blog can be a great use of your time. So check it out, and have a little fun in the mean time,  I am sure you will be happy with the information that can be found at this blog.