Someone on Twitter shared the following article from the New York Times regarding wine and fraud. Its title is clever: In Vino Veritas. In Napa, Deceit.
It’s not hard to see why the fraud began in the first place. When expenses are greater than income, a business will suffer a net loss. If you couple the continuous losses with the loan from his wife’s aunt and uncle, it only adds to the pressure. There was certainly an opportunity for Mr. Hill to engage in fraud. After all, he was the owner of Hill Wine Company. The article doesn’t suggest any rationalizations, but I would venture to guess the personal bankruptcy in 2009 would provide ample justification because Mr. Hill could potentially argue that he was doing it to provide for his family.
Something else that caught my attention in the article is the following section:
Emmanuel Kemiji, who owns Miura Vineyards in Novato, is a master sommelier, a level of wine expertise so difficult to achieve that only 220 people in the world hold the title. In an interview, he said that even top tasters like himself would find it nearly impossible to discern the true geographic origin of a well-made cabernet.
I had done research during graduate school regarding conspicuous consumption and counterfeit products. One of the things I found was that most people aren’t “intimate” with products, i.e. most people don’t know the true details of a brand; the only important thing is the brand’s name itself. If it’s difficult for a master sommelier “to discern the true geographic origins of a well-made cabernet,” then it would probably be even more difficult for everyone else.
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
– Martin Luther King, Jr.
I usually don’t remember all the details when I have a dream, but a few days ago was an exception. I was in a rural part of Missouri, on my way to a wedding near a lake. I couldn’t tell you the name of the lake, but I do know that I was sitting in the backseat of a car. An elderly woman was the driver, and her husband was sitting in the passenger seat. I was sitting behind the husband, and my iPhone was next to me.
Once we arrived to the wedding’s site, I remember the lady parked the car very close to the lake. It was at this point that the car fell into the lake. I don’t know why, but two of my coworkers were there at the wedding already. One of them dove into the lake and rescued me and my iPhone. I don’t know what happened to the elderly couple. I can only assume they escaped somehow because I was the only person in the car. Once I was safe, my other coworker provided me with the number of someone who could fix the water damage to my phone. It was at this point that I woke up from the dream.
I don’t know the dream’s significance. I could sit here all day and throw out all kinds of theories behind the why I was in MO or why I was on my way to a wedding. I’m sure everything has meaning at the sub-conscious level that I could spend weeks with an expert analyzing.
I promised a new entry several weeks ago, and as promised, here it is.
Recently, I completed an online class at one of the local schools in San Diego. The class’s name is unimportant because what I would like to discuss in this entry is my experience with an online class.
It wasn’t my first foray into the world of online classes. I had taken two previous classes for credit and didn’t seem to have an issue with those classes.
Although I passed the class with an A, I wasn’t satisfied with my experience this time. I think had I been required to attend the class in person, it would have been a better experience because there would have been better student/teacher interaction. The instructor did her best to make the class interactive by requiring students to post replies to weekly topics, but it isn’t the same as discussing the subject in person.
The teacher did her best to insert an anecdote here and there, but she kept to reading directly from the PowerPoint slides. Was I happy with the class? Over all, I would say I was dissatisfied with it, but I enjoyed the subject matter because it has been one of my interests for quite some time.
Wow! It has been quite some time since my last blog entry. I can’t explain why I have neglected the blog, but tonight a good friend reminded me that I do have a blog. I do plan to post something in the near future, but it will have to wait because I need a series of events to transpire first. In the meantime, enjoy this video clip.
Having crawled out from under my rock, I learned that Comic Con started yesterday in San Diego. I have never attended this grassroots event turned media circus due to my lack of interest and my hatred for dealing with crowds. However, I happened to catch a quick news story, which you can watch here, about the parking situation.
Comic Con might be a boon for the event itself, hotels, restaurants, clubs, bars, taxis and so forth, but it’s having a negative effect on residents who live and work in downtown San Diego.
Parking prices have escalated as there is more demand with so many people attending this annual event. The increased demand has meant that residents/workers used to paying $5 to $7 are seeing prices ranging from $20 and even as high as $50 to $60. The result of Comic Con has a negative, albeit short-term, consequence for these people who are experiencing price gouging for an event in which they do not even attend–let’s not forget the increase in traffic and heavy crowds.
One of the features I would like for Apple to include in iOS 7 is the ability to delete–or at least hide–the first-party apps. For me, the list includes: Newsstand, Calculator, Game Center, Compass, Voice Memos, Stocks, Weather, Passbook, Videos, Clock, Reminders, Maps and Safari.
I know it’s wishful thinking, but the truth is I don’t use any of these apps nor do I ever plan to use any of them. I know I can put them in a folder or hide them through this trick, but it would be nice to have a built-in feature that’s more permanent and won’t be undone in the event I ever need to reboot my iOS device.