Shop For The Snow Leopards

January 29, 2008

Every once in a while I come across a thoroughly excellent site, and the Snow Leopard Trust definitely falls into that category – it combines exotic ornaments and textiles, charity, and one of my favorite things, big cats.  Besides having tons of information about these majestic creatures, you can shop for handmade goods from the felines’ homelands of Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, and more.  It’s a great way to add a touch of the exotic to your home; of course, you can also adopt a snow leopard or two as well.

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How can you say no to this adorable face?

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The Definition of Adorable

January 27, 2008

Is sweet little tiger cubs!  Don’t you want to hug them?

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More pictures of these Siberian tiger quadruplets here.

Happy New Year!

January 1, 2008

Happy New Year, everyone!

 May you have a most excellent 2008. 

A few random predictions:

1.  A Democrat will be elected president.*

2.  The “green” movement and will become completely mainstream as the environment and sustainable production become even bigger issues; the concepts of “eating local” (localvores) and buying handmade will also gain support.  However, fast food and convenience, fast fashion (e.g. H&M, Target, etc.), and the abundance of cheap goods at places like Walmart aren’t going anywhere, so it is going to take much more time before the majority of people do more than just paying lip service to these issues.

3.  Notre Dame’s football team will be marginally better; Charlie Weis’s highly touted recruits will show promise and he will not get fired.

4.  Some sort of Watergate-level scandalous information is going to come to light about the Bush administration, probably having to do with Cheney (this is pure guesswork on my part, but the Vice Dick is one crafty, shady old dude, isn’t he?)

5.  Media companies and advertisers will (finally) start to realize that partipants and conversation are more important than sheer numbers.  Or at least I hope so.

6.  Many others have predicted this, but RSS will tip this year (yes, it’s already popular amongst bloggers and techies, but it is not exactly common outside of the geek world). 

*There’s already one positive thing about 2008 – it is Curious George’s last year in office.

Search engine optimization takes a long time, people.  Writing something thoughtful, witty, and unique also doesn’t happen overnight. 

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Via the brilliant Hugh Macleod.

Did you know that fantasy football is the number one online game, beating out hugely popular games like World of Warcraft and Second Life?  With millions of fantasy team owners out there, I can’t be the only one plotting my strategy for my upcoming draft, right?

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Okay, I really just wanted to post this hilarious picture from Kiss Me Suzy

It’s no secret that I’m very amused by lolcats, especially I’m a bit of a cat person (people who know me in real life are probably going “A bit of a cat person?  That’s the understatement of the year”).  Judging by the amount of traffic that sites like I can has cheezburger get though, I’m clearly not the only one. 

Which is why I was so amused when this was brought to my attention.  Anil Dash, blogger extraordinaire (link to his bio) wrote about the lolcat phenomenon, including some of the history, grammar rules (yes, as he writes, it is possible to get cat speak wrong), and preferred nomenclature.  There’s lots of interesting comments too.

Lolcats are even getting attention from the mainstream media – Time wrote about this particular meme a couple weeks ago.  For some reason, I find it awesome that people take Lolcats so seriously.  The sheer popularity of lolcats (and other memes) is a funny reminder that for every person using the net to change their world, there just as many captioning cat pictures.*

A picture is worth a thousand words:

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Yes, I made it myself for the purposes of this post at the LoLbuildr.

*I’m not knocking people who caption cat pictures – I think people who create particularly awesome lolcats should get some kind of reward, actually, because they are hilarious.  And um, I am one of those cat picture-captioning people.

Since I’ve been a little light on travel-related stuff lately – too much web 2.0/new media related stuff that I just felt compelled to discuss, let’s talk about the New Seven Wonders of the World.  On a related note, does their voting system (you can register and vote online, by text message, or by phone) remind anyone else of American Idol?

The New Wonders:

I find the personalization of the selection process very interesting.  Of course, choosing the seven world wonders is a subjective thing anyways (who can really determine what someone else thinks is the most wondrous wonder?), but this sort of makes me think of the whole web 2.0 phenomenon (yes, I can relate everything back to that).

First of all, the wonders are chosen democratically – the winners were the ones favored by the people who had the ability and chose to participate in the vote.  Same thing with highly ranked websites and blogs.  Second, people and nations campaigned to their favorite picked (SEO and general promotion).  Third, well, this is technically the second list of world wonders, thus actually making these seven wonders the 2.0 version.

Now, I haven’t personally seen any of these wonders (although I’m not arguing with the choices) and since these are the 7 Wonders 2.0, part of the fun is being able to join the conversation and pick your own – in no particular order, here are my seven manmade wonders:

What are your wonders 2.0?

It’s time for another Monday music post.  This time it’s a chill playlist that will send you (mentally, at least) on vacation.

First, we’ll head to Mexico with James Taylor, because “it sounds so simple and I’ve just got to go.”  If you can’t relax while listening to this song, you need a trip to Margaritaville

Jimmy Buffett’s Parrothead anthem is an obvious choice, but Changes in Latitude, Changes in Attitude, also fits the bill, since it reminds us not to take ourselves so seriously, and nothing is too serious in the islands – “if we couldn’t laugh we would go insane.” 

No trip to an island paradise is complete with a little Bob Marley, so Don’t Worry Be Happy has to be on the list, along with Jammin’

Although Marrakesh isn’t an island, it’s certainly can be an exotic paradise, so catch a train from Casablanca going south with Crosby, Stills, and Nash on the Marrakesh Express.

Get even further away from it all with Bob Seger (By the way – Bob and I share a hometown – he actually played at my dad’s high school dances – so I can call him Bob and all that.) and escape from everything by going to Katmandu.

Lastly, Miles From Nowhere by the artist formerly known as Cat Stevens is a good finale, because who hasn’t wanted to be miles from everything at least once in a while?