Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Trees of Boston

The Naked and Famous "Young Blood" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wng0bZaLhC8

Although I really need to sleep, I have been wanting to post for some time now a few pictures of some nice looking trees that I've seen here.

Tree in front of Cambridge Public Library (looks Maple no?)

Tree from my view outside my window (by Cambridge City Hall)

This one is a nice looking tree in Hyannis (Cape Cod)

Also, funny quote from today's texts:

Me: My eye is infected and there were too many kids in line in front of me for a doughnut, so I just left without my doughnut, I'm soo annoyed.
Maus: you and your donuts. Does your trainer know? [referring to Mike my 'e-trainer' from previous post.]

Friday, July 20, 2012

"Failure is never permanent"

Just when I think I've had it with everything I've had to deal with this week I get an amazing email from my app for an ab workout trainer:

Hey, I just wanted you to know that there are always going to be obstacles in life. Obstacles to getting your dream body. That six pack. Losing weight. Getting a job. Falling in love. The list is endless. You CAN’T avoid these obstacles... BUT you can choose how you react to them. When life knocks you down, do you stay down or do you rise to fight again?

Success in fitness, and life, is dependent on persistence, tenacity and determination. There is a great saying in martial arts - “a black belt is a white belt who never quit”. If you never quit, you will achieve your goal. It’s just a matter of time.

You went and gorged yourself on cake. This could easily lead into a week of binge eating or more...

You were supposed to do a workout today. Did you miss it because of other commitments? Do you miss the rest of your workouts for the week out of a sense of failure? Do you stay down?

Hell no! Get back up, do it now! A year from now you’ll wish you started today.

Failure is never permanent... when you get back up. Pretty soon you will string together a few days of success, then a few more. Soon you’ve lost a few inches. Your muscles are beginning to show. You fall down, you get up. You lose a little more weight. You fall, you get up. You will soon reach your goal.

As you exercise, work and play this week, remember - “Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”

-Mike e-trainer

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Another (quick) lesson in Stoicism: The pathology of the human psyche

Florence + the Machine: "Dog Days" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rsr8oXxzFEI
This Stoic lesson stems from an issue that I have been struggling with during the past few weeks and I believe I am close to a resolution. Sometimes individuals display a multitude of pathological behaviours that others (including myself) cannot reason. The Stoic philosophy as a response to this is the belief that people are fated to behave a certain way. This behaviour is not something that we can control (obviously) nor is it something they can control either; it is set by the three fate that have predetermined the past, present, and future. Furthermore, upon an encounter with such a behaviour it is always easy to put the behaviour, your reaction, and your impact in cosmic context. Basically, we will all be dead eventually and none of this will matter. See! Now I feel a little bit better already that my problem has no real impact on the universe.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Incipit Vita Nova

Listen to: will.i.am "This is Love" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9I9Ar6upx34

"In that book which is my memory, On the first page of the chapter that is the day when I first met you,
Appear the words, 'Here begins a new life'."

Dante "La Vita Nuova" (Italian for "The New Life")

For some reason I was thinking about this excerpt today. While I've been agitated about my potential move, I think I am more frustrated with my current stance in life in general. I feel like I am still awaiting the day I can start the rest of my life. A while back I read a small part of the Divine Comedy (didn't finish it though, I got stuck in Purgatorio--Pun intended) but I do think it's necessary for one to proceed through the obstacles of the Inferno to eventually get to where you want to be. (Although, allegorically speaking, the end for Dante was an ecclesiastical Paradise free from sin/repentance.) I just wonder how far along in the journey I really am. I guess the point is to just keep moving forward and eventually you'll make it (hopefully.)

If memory serves me correctly, I think the quote from above are the first few sentences of La Vita Nuova which I believe was a collection of mainly love poems that Dante wrote about his eternal love Beatrice. I would like to publish my poetry collection one day too and I feel compelled to draw whatever minute parallels I can between his life and mine mainly because I have poetry that was written over the course of ten years that collectively work as a unit and should be published before I proceed to the next chapter of my life. What I find so endearing about Dante's La Vita Nuova is the everlasting devotion/love for Beatrice (I forget the backstory but I think he only met her once or something.) Over the past year or so I've realized the importance of having an enduring source of happiness and love in one's life. I hope anyone who reads this stops and thinks about what that is for them. (Perhaps one achieves that through work or through the people in one's life.)

Lastly,  an interesting factoid about Dante's writings is that they were among the first texts written in Italian instead of Latin. This renders significant because it allowed literature to be accessible to the masses by virtue of the language it was published in (Italian was the major language spoken amongst citizens during the early renaissance.) Back before the 13th century Latin was the primary language of literature, thus written texts (and essentially education) were usually only accessible to the upper class or clergy. Oh yea, the title of the post means "here begins a new life" in Italian.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Ships of Boston

Listen to Pentatonix (a cappella group) "Starships": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8FjJhPVu2Bg
In honor of this blog and my penchant for large ships, I am posting a few pictures of the giant ships I've seen around here so far. How amazing are they?

Ship from Freedom Trail

 Ship from Navy Yard adjacent to Freedom Trail

Not exactly a ship, but a nice sailboat inside MIT dome. Go MIT!

Hard to see, but ship from fleetweek. (Darned iPhone camera at night)

Most likely a supply ship. Taken off the rooftop patio of Legal Seafoods on the waterfront.

**Stay Tuned for yacht pics from the U-Mich yacht party next week!**

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Five more things to know about me

Listen to Modest Mouse "Float On" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWvh85Qd8us

(1) I love it when it rains.
(2) I have dark humor and sarcastic humor.
(3) I love getting paper mail. Even more so, I love the art of handwriting letters and sending them (something I don't get to do at all.) Because of this I work hard to have nice penmanship. (Cursive and print.)
(4) I do not like to get material presents. I've been lucky enough to basically get anything I ask for or want which makes getting anything material a lot less special for me. I do, however, love getting books that I would like to read. No one has been able to do this for me, but if you can know me well enough to anticipate what I'd like to read then you know me better than anyone.
(5) It's important for me to serve/give back.