Thursday, October 27, 2011

Education Nation 2.0 at Stanford University

Designing an education that truly builds the necessary skills for today's enormously diverse student population is not easy. But it's the key to opportunity for our citizens, economic vitality for our nation, and to assuring the U.S. remains a world leader. There is hope: innovations and innovators that challenge the status quo; research to help us understand how to move the education needle; a virtual army of reformers experimenting with new ways to teach, learn, and run our public schools.
Panelists: Salman Khan, Cory Booker, John Hennessy, Kim Smith, Claude Steele, and Reed Hastings. Moderated by Charlie Rose.

Long, but worthwhile if you've got 91 minutes to spare.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

sf camerawork on market

Alicia Nogales (First Exposures' BFF) threw a small appreciation party for the mentors in SF Camerawork's new home on Market Street, so we were able to explore the still unfinished space before the official move.

"Moving Forward..."
"Moving Forward..."

It used to be the Singer sewing machine factory (manufacturing on the second floor, retail on the ground floor). The space still needs a lot of work, but the floors are done and the windows are incredible.

"Moving Forward..."

It was nice to see folks relaxing mid-week. For some reason, I got a ton of pictures of Carola.

"Moving Forward..."
"Moving Forward..."
"Moving Forward..."

First Exposures got a huge donation from Fujifilm, so we got to play around with the Instax 210 and some instant film.

"Moving Forward..."

We're pretty.

"Moving Forward..."

storytelling through translation

This calls to mind the act of translation — shuttling from one world to another — which is in many ways the key to understanding Murakami’s work...When Murakami sat down to write his first novel, he struggled until he came up with an unorthodox solution: he wrote the book’s opening in English, then translated it back into Japanese. This, he says, is how he found his voice.
("The Fierce Imagination of Haruki Murakami", Sam Anderson)

This is my favorite fact about Murakami ever.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

do you know the way to san jose?

LAS to SJC. Saturday, 10.08.11. Instagram.


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Jeff Altman: "Las Vegas, 1962"

Thanks to my friend Patrick for sharing this with me. I can't help but be sad that out of all the casinos featured in this video, only three (Flamingo Hilton, Binion's, and Golden Nugget) are still around. I struggle with whether or not Las Vegas' obsession with tearing down its past is refreshing or tragic.

Las Vegas 1962 from Jeff Altman on Vimeo.

Friday, October 14, 2011

31 rausch photo show

I'm in a group photo show at 31 rausch tonight. I'm showing some of my work from my Japan trip this past summer, and of course I'm second-guessing every single thing about it. But I'm showing with people I care about and admire, so at least it won't be a total flail.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

wedding festivus: Ted and Whitney edition

After multiple wine tastings, envelope and gift bag stuffing parties, and some friend and family drama, we all headed down to Los Gatos to watch Whitney and Ted get married.

Ted and Whitney's wedding

Whitney and Ted chose a beautiful property in the Santa Cruz mountains called Nestldown. Our friend Les was the officiant, and he was adorably nervous prior to the ceremony (but trying not to show it). I watched him and Ted skip over the bridge, Wizard-of-Oz-style, on the way to the altar.

The whole time we were waiting for the bridal party to descend down the stairway, I watched Ted; he looked giddy and nervous. And when Whitney appeared at the bottom of the path, they both started smiling uncontrollably at each other. It was the sweetest thing.

Ted and Whitney's wedding

Despite one small snafu with the rings, Les performed perfectly. Afterwards, the guests headed to cocktail hour. We had all been helping with the wine selection, but I made a beeline towards the beer line, because of this:

Mmm, delicious, delicious malts.

After dinner, Ted and Whitney took the floor. They had been taking swing dance lessons for the last few months, and choreographed something special for their first dance. Ted looked like he was concentrating so hard that he might blow a blood vessel. For some reason, that made me tear up a little.

I attempted to dance with Whit, Jay, and Les. Most of those were fails. I made friends with the photobooth guy. I played with Tevis' and Katrina's 10-week-old son. We were all convinced that the night was lasting forever, even though it was only 9:30 pm. Good times. Congratulations, Ted and Whitney.

Ted and Whitney's wedding
Ted and Whitney's wedding
Ted and Whitney's wedding
Ted and Whitney's wedding
Ted and Whitney's wedding

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

wedding photobooth

ginned up

I could only muster the strength for one event during SF Cocktail week, and that was the St. George Spirits Bathtub Gin BBQ.

St. George Spirits gin release party, 2011

When we bought the ticket for the bus shuttle, we had no idea that "bus shuttle = party bus."

Every single person who stepped onto the bus was confused. And because we're all a bunch of Bay Area introverts, that meant that after expressing awkward shock, everyone immediately went nose-deep into their smartphones to tweet about it.

When we got to the distillery, people were already milling around, drinks in hand. I should say at this point, we had no idea what we were getting into. I thought it was just going to be gin tastings and food, which is similar to how our prior experience at St. George was. In reality, we were handed nine drink tickets, representing the nine gin cocktails that we were permitted to drink over the course of 3 hours. Did you get that? NINE gin cocktails over THREE hours.

gin and homemade tonic

I didn't drink all of mine; I mean, unless it was going to be a "St. George Spirits Slumber Party" there was no way I was going to consume that much alcohol and not feel terrible. Some people did not have that foresight. When Whit and I got to the BART station after the event, we saw a lady who only an hour before had been dancing up a storm, slumped over on the pavement with her companion, accompanied by BART police. As we waited for the train to take us down to Hayward, we heard the sound of an ambulance pull up to the station. Yikes.

Most other people seemed to manage their intake a little better, and the rest of the event was really enjoyable. The nine (nine? NINE.) cocktails served were:

  • Sidewinder (Eric Grenier, Luka's -- Dry rye gin, green chartreuse, Laird's applejack)
  • Rappaccini's Garden (Ayn Kirkendall, St. George Spirits -- Botanivore gin, cucumber, ginger beer)
  • The Swarthy Gentleman (Alex Conde, Hudson -- Dry rye gin, Velvet Falernum, tobacco tincture)
  • The Face of Boe (Dion Jardine, Acme Bar -- Botanivore gin, maraschino liqueur, Small Hands gum syrup)
  • Gin & Tonic (Kate August, Boot & Shoe -- Botanivore gin, homemade tonic, Seltzer Sister's seltzer)
  • St. G Gibson (Kate Hug, Studebaker Pickles -- Dry rye gin, Studebaker Pickles Perfect pearl onions)
  • Robin Wood (Marjan Simovics, Era Art Bar -- Terroir gin, green chartreuse, grapefruit, lime)
  • Salty Sakura (Melissa Lawton, Hibiscus -- Botanivore gin, Tempus Fugit Liqueur de Violettes, umeboshi, shiso leaf, brandied cherry)
  • Naked in the Rain (Brian McMillian, Sidebar -- Terroir gin, Tempus Fugit Kina, Tempus Fugit Liqueur de Violettes)

Other photos:
St. George Spirits gin release party, 2011
St. George Spirits gin release party, 2011
St. George Spirits gin release party, 2011
St. George Spirits gin release party, 2011

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Lots of great articles already.

Apple Visionary Steve Jobs Dies At 56
Jobs, Apple Co-Founder and Visionary, Is Dead
Technology's Great Reinventor: Steve Jobs (1955–2011)
Apple's Steve Jobs Is Dead
Steve Jobs Has Passed Away
Steve Jobs, 1955 – 2011

"The financial collapse encouraged the worst sort of behavior"

This Fresh Air interview with Michael Lewis brought it like it's never been broughten. I thought I had a good idea of what has been happening in Europe, and then I emerged from the cave. Although after listening to this full interview, I kind of want to plunge back into darkness.

A couple of highlights:
[Goldman Sachs] lent the [Greek] government money without saying that's what they were doing. If you did this in the corporate world, a bunch of people would be put in jail. They helped the Greek government rig its books so that they looked acceptable to the European Union so they'd be admitted to the euro[zone]."
Wall Street, in recent years, seems to have become an engine of unfairness...[O]nce the Bush and Obama administrations decided that you couldn't let these firms fail and they didn't want the mess of nationalizing them, there was really only one way forward — and that way was to gift money onto these banks until they're back on their feet and can function at the center of the economy again. But that, to any normal person who is outside the system, just looks ridiculously unfair. It looks like socialism for capitalists and capitalism for everybody else.
Sing it, Lewis, sing it.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Khan Academy and Stanford medical school

During the initial discussions around medical education reform, one model that's been kicked around is incorporating the Khan Academy format of moving didactic out of the classroom and protecting that time for more meaningful learning (discussions, projects, one-on-one, etc.). It looks like we've been moving ahead on this: Salman Khan came to Stanford and recorded a few videos with our faculty, including:
One of my former students, Morgan Theis, makes a few appearances as Sal Khan's mentee in this project.

Andy's four-part series on the evolution of colon cancer resonated with me personally, of course. Also, because when Sal Khan asks, "how can you tell the difference between the lymphocytes and the cancer cells?" Andy deadpans, "it's because I'm a pathologist."

GABF, then and now

I'm not at the Great American Beer Festival this year, partially because tickets sold out while I was in Japan, and partly because I couldn't miss the Friday start to the course. I am shedding a tear at all the delicious beers that I'm not tasting, but it's a nice testament to how popular the craft beer movement has become. Here's a chart detailing GABF then and now (via GABF site, created by Joey McDaniel).