Sunday, May 30, 2010

We love you Bruiser

Bruiser died today. Suddenly if not unexpectedly. He's been on medications for his heart for years, and could barely make it around the park without getting short of breath, but he still wagged his tail and pranced for joy until the last, like all good dogs do.

He was 11 years and one month old today. Here's a picture of him with his siblings. You can tell why he was called Bruiser. He's the one with the blue collar.

Like all Scotties he thought he was bigger. Here he's playing (and winning) at Frisbee with his cousin Scout.

But this is how I'll remember him - tail wagging and wanting to play.

Good dog.

Good dog.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Travel and Karma

I'm waiting for my flight back to PHL from SeaTac after a week in Seattle-Vancouver-Olympia and feel compelled to share the benefits of a week of good karma.

As I learned during a forced layover in Rouen several years ago the travel gods kneecap your best laid plans for a reason. In this instance last minute changes resulted in my 'discovering' the Chucknaut Drive in northwest Washington, the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival, Mallard Ice Cream in Bellingham, the Sunset Inn in Vancouver's Davie Village, Milestones Restaurant in Kitsilano, the Cedarbrook Lodge, and the best meal of the trip - homemade (literally!) pasta with asparagus, fennel, and red onions by none other than Chef Daniel Lipson (husband of noneother than Penn's own Michelle Seelig) who moonlights daytimes as a Physician Assistant at Group Health Puget Sound. If there were ever an argument for slow travel, this trip was it. Get off the interstate peeps!

I was in Vancouver for the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine. As is true of all good meetings I learned more than I thought possible and benefitted repeatedly from serendipity.

For example I would never have planned 20 minutes in a private informal discussion with Jerome Kassirer, emeritus editor of the New England Journal of Medicine, but that's what happened when he chanced upon me in an out of the way spot we both discovered while waiting for his talk. Was he hoping to nap too? And what a talk! His slides aren't up yet but here's a podcast of his thoughts on industry-medicine relationships. Standing ovation from a full house. At 4:30 in the afternoon! Be still my heart.

The mantra of business travelers is free (fast) wifi and breakfast, but Cedarbrook Lodge (right at SeaTac!) provides the fast free wifi, breakfast of charcuterie, hard boiled eggs, outstanding coffee, oatmeal, juices, bagel, croissant, cheese, yogurt, artisinal bread, in the room you see here. The view out the floor to ceiling windows is even better. Great rates through online booking sites. If you have an early flight out of SeaTac you *can't* stay anyplace else. Did I mention the free all you can eat malted chocolate balls in three different flavors (mint, chocolate, and butterscotch)? Inconceivable!

I met some great new folk, caught up with old friends (Congratulations Mike R.), and remain impressed that our specialty is attracting some enthusiastic and energetic young talent like our own Mario DeMarco who talked about experiential learning in residency properwise. The man haz powerpoint skillz.

And who could ask for more than a dropped ball in the 11th to seal a passable if not winning road trip for the Phillies?

Glad to be coming home. The gate agent is calling...

Sunday, January 31, 2010

I have more than enough. Do you? Here's how to tell.

Kurt Vonnegut first got my attention as a freshman in college. I ran across this when he passed away a few years ago and thought I had lost it. Fortunately a friend's request got me looking again and reminded me how Yossarian and Billy Pilgrim are related.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Adobe Flash and the iPad

I'm a confirmed MacHead, so everyone who knows this about me has been asking whether (Ha!) or more appropriately when I'll get an iPad.

Watching the introduction this week I noted that the NY times webpage didn't render Flash, prompting instablogs to tout "I can't believe it's not going to use Flash!"

But as a long term MacHead I have the kool aid in my genes. I don't think I have any natural DNA left in fact. So it's natural to me that Apple is again saying "It doesn't work, we're moving on and suggest you do too."

They've said this before. I remember "I can't believe there's no 5 1/4 inch floppy drive!" only to be followed by the hit single "I can't believe there's no floppy drive!" among others.

If Apple's good at anything it's good at making the future.

As my maven John says: Flash sucks and deserves to die. And thanks for pointing out the Daring Fireball treatise that explains exactly how and why Adobe sucks the big one. Adobe installers routinely interrupt me when seeing patients, crash when browsing, and use stupid proprietary installers that were bad when they were state of the art in 1998. And NO I DON'T WANT TO INSTALL YOUR INSANELY ANNOYING AND BUGGY UPDATES NOW.

The Flash install and crash saga is Apple v Adobe, and I know where my money is. (Not really, I bought Apple at $19.50 many years and two splits ago and could probably have retired by now if I hadn't sold it at $24 - on it's way to today's $192 - which is why I don't put money into single stocks anymore. I'm clearly incompetent at the money making part.)

But the money is beside the point. Flash is the past. I'm moving on. If hulu wants me to watch then they're gonna have to get with the program and dump Flash like all right thinking webmasters.

Rob Centor speaks for me today

Sore throats are easy, right?

If it were easy anyone could do it.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Official Google Blog: A new approach to China

Official Google Blog: A new approach to China
In which Google says to China, "Not cool dude." And I thought the Google v. Apple saga was interesting.