Category Archives: Consumption

Birthday Horoscope – Sagittarius

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Let the world be known, I am not really into Astrology and Horroscopes; and when I say not really, I mean I don’t pay attention to them AT ALL. I categorize Astrology with organized religion minus the organization (wherever that file may be). So, with that disclaimer out there, my mom sent me a newspaper clipping of my horroscope from my birthday this year. I would like to tear apart its semantics and say that it is such a broad description it could apply to hundreds of thousands of people, which is probably true and why they put it in the newspaper. Because of this clipping and this post I am going to dive deeper into the crazy under world (or should I say over…stars…shrug) of astrology and my horriscope.

This is what started this little astrology rant of mine:
Sagittarius Horoscope December 18
Sagittarius Horoscope for December 18th

I read this clipping and was like; “wow, I really like what this thing is saying” AND I can relate on one level or another to everything mentioned in the horoscope that came out on my birthday.

Ok. So now, I am going to give you some basic characteristics of a Sagittarius and I will tell you if they apply to me. Anyone out there that knows me, feel free to call “bullshit” in the comments section if you see fit:

1.
The symbol of this zodiac sign is half horse and half man holding a bow and arrow.I do not resemble this character one bit…see below.

Picture of a Sagittarius, half horse half man with bow and arrow

2.
Sagittarius is constantly searching for greater awareness via new ideas and new experiences. This applies to me

3.
Sagittarius love getting beyond their immediate surroundings via adventure, travel and philosophy. I like this one…it hits the nail right on the head (adventure and Travel in one: Mexico trips, mountain biking, surf trips to Indo, South America, Central America, Carribean, Africa, Australia, New Zealand; Philosophy: Atlas Shrugged, Fountainhead, Senior Thesis on Michel Foucault)

4.
Sagittarius often look to the silver lining of a dark cloud and could be considered optimists. This is me…although I may make fun of the bad, I will always pursue the silver lining.

5.
There is a connection between Sagittarius and Horses.This really couldn’t be further from the truth. Horses scare me and they are stinky. It could be just because I have not spent much time around them and the few times I have, I had a bad experience. At present, the only connection I have to horses is through Summer. Her mom breeds Hanoverian Horses

6.
The Sagittarius Motto is “It is better to know how to learn than to know.” This kind of reminds me of the old biblical passage of teaching a hungry man to fish as opposed to feeding him. This particular horriscope goes on to describing this motto as an infinite quest for wisdom and the “things to come”. This does apply to me, but at this point I feel like they are stroking my ego a bit.

7.
A Sag can feel sullen if his/her wings are clipped. Yup…but I can’t give you the reasons why yet. :-)

8.
Sagittarius Element: Fire; Fire gives you light and heat and can provide this for many others without depleting its supply. Although it is a fire, it is not hot, it is only warm acting as a far away beacon or lighthouse leading the way to a destination that is forever changing. Hmmmm, this one may apply to me in the fact that I have new goals and aspirations before I accomplish my old ones…so I will never in my life accomplish my goals and say…ok, what should I do now? There are always new ones keeping me busy as I accomplish old ones.

9.
Sagittarius Quality: Unshakable Optimistic AttitudeIt says unshakable optimistic attitude but contradicts itself by saying that a Sag can be very sullen if its wings are clipped. I think they are reaching a little bit here.


10

Ninth House: Travel We already explored this one on item number three

11.
Ruling Planet: Jupiter; Jupitor is the largest planet in our Solar System and often leads this zodiac sign to over indulge or overspend making Sagittarius the King of big, better and more. This large planet encourages Sagitarrius to take risks and create opportunities that help this sign live life as an adventure and believe in something greater then themselves. Well, the first thing I get out of this is that for all those great qualities I have, I am destined to compete with “The Smiths” for a bigger house, faster car, nicer suit…hey, this sounds familiar, maybe there WAS truth to that at one time.

Alright, that was my analysis of my Zodiac Sign, Sagittarius. Thanks for the Birthday Horoscope Mom….good stuff. :-)

Dubai Craziness

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My sister and her family are currently living in Ethiopia. She has an awesome husband and three beautiful kids (two boys and a girl). I get these great emails from them fairly regularly discussing their adventures as a family, as parents and as young kids growing up in Ethiopia.

Recently, two of them went on a trip to Dubai for some fairly routine medical testing and sent me an email expressing how amazing Dubai was. Now, if you know my sister, you know she wasn’t caught up in the consumerism of the whole deal, but purely amazed at the engineering and wealth around a city smack dab in the middle of unsettled nations in the Middle East.

Here is an excerpt from her letter to me, and for the kids, cause hopefully they will go to this page and read this entry, I am going to post pictures of some of the amazing structures the witnessed from the ground.

She wrote:
What an interesting place–although it is set on the Gulf in and amidst nations which have difficulty”, it is a sea of “westernized” consumption. I have NEVER in my life seen anything quite like it–a beautiful skyline on a fine sand shoreline–yet more traffic and fine cars than I have ever seen. The population is roughly 20% Emiratee, and the rest are immigrant. It’s insane how much wealth exists. They are building the world’s tallest building, nearby one of the supermalls with an indoor ski slope (which I saw and gawked at mostly), as well as the 7 star hotel (whose name I can’t pronounce but is Al something), which sits out on the Gulf in the water, designed in the shape of a sailboat. Apparently, there are two stories of “underwater” rooms and each room has its own butler, etc. There are a minimum of 8 supermalls in Dubai itself with oil money bringing in names like, Saks etc. There are even a series of islands that have been built offshore in crazy shapes, like Palm trees, where you can buy your own island. . . Wow, overwhelming. Even a visit to the grocery store was a bit overwhelming after leaving our market selection of veggies in Bahir Dar. The types of clothing worn were amazing, and beautiful, many representing both different countries and religions (lots of women in full black garb–burqas, some across the whole face with a veil over the eyes, some with just a head scarf. The men varied in their dress from extreme western to full head to toe white pants and dress, with checkered head cloths, etc. Very odd to see the women trailing behind the men (several wives often to one man).

The Hotel you couldnt pronounce is called “Burj Al Arab”…here is the picture as well as pictures of The World, Palm Jebel and the Ski Resort so you can show everyone that wasn’t there what you guys saw!.


Picture of Burj Al Arab

This building, whose name literally translates to “Tower of the Arabs” and boasts being the tallest building in the world that is used exclusively as a hotel. Construction of this hotel began in 1994 and took 5 years to build finishing its construction in 1999. The hotel stands over 900 feet tall. The architect of this “symbol” was WS Atkins PLC.

Picture of Palm Jebel
Picture of Palm Jebel

This area is currently being developed and upon completion will be one of the worlds 3 largest artificial islands. It was a project created to help with Dubai’s growing tourist industry that will take 100′s of millions of cubic meters of rock and sand to complete. There is still room for development on these islands…

Picture of The World in Dubai
Picture of The World in Dubai

The world is large group of islands that from above will appear to be shaped like the world. It will consist, upon completion in 2008, of over 250 small islands for sale to private investors ranging in size from 5-20 acres each.

Picture of outside of the Indoor Ski Slope in Dubai
Picture of the Indoor Ski Slope
Picture of Dubai Lift Line
Picture of lift line at the Dubai Ski Area

This Ski area smack dab in the middle of the desert is in the Dubai Emerates Mall. It is currently the worlds largest indoor ski slope measuring 1200 feet long (400 meters) using upwards of 600 tons of snow!

Alright kids, enough of the geography and engineering lesson for the day…I hope you all enjoyed all this being in one spot. These really are amazing…

Quick Healthy Shrimp Dinner

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Summer and I were super hungry the other night and wanted to make something that would be really quick. I threw together a healthy meal that took 25 minutes with prep time and almost no clean up. Look past the picture for the simple recipe.

Grilled Shrimp and Vegatable Kabobs
with rice and beans

Ingredients for Lowfat Shrimp and Vegetable Kabobs:

  • Trader Joes Peel Uncooked Tail on Frozen Shrimp
  • Onions
  • Tomatoes
  • Red Bell Peppers
  • Seasame Seeds
  • Microwavable Minute Rice
  • Canned Whole Balack Beans
  • Wooden Spears
  • Newmans Own Lowfat Sesame Seed Dressing
  • Gas Grill

    Directions:

  • Chop the onions and bell peppers the same size squares
  • Pierce the Cherry tomatoes alternately with the onions and bell peppers
  • Pierce the Shrimp onto the kabobs
    don’t crunch them tight, they need room to cook)
  • Pour Seasame Seed Dressing all over the shrimp
  • Pour Seasame Seed Dressing all over the veggies
  • Add to hot grill (on high)
  • Should be ready after cooking for under 8 minutes
  • Microwave Beans and Rice for two minutes togehter

    Not exactly a gourmet meal, but it sure turns out great for such a cheap, quick low fat meal meal. We were stoked. As you can see from the picture, we ate it family style off or my old bamboo cutting board with a “party size” glass of red wine (probably a cabernet).

  • 3 Tons of Cocaine and a Submarine

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    A homemade submarine was seized off of the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica this week with 3 tons of cocaine! The sub was first spotted, after a tip off, 103 miles off of the coast of Cabo Blanco National Park on the Nicoya peninsula. The Sub moved at about 7mph and aside from the cocaine, it was also carrying two columbians, a Guatemalan and a Sri Lankan.

    The total amount of Cocaine confiscated in Costa Rica this year is now up to 18 tons. Now that’s a lot of sleepless mornings and unwelcomed sunrises.

    Once the offenders were captured, they were shipped off to the United States for punishment. WTF? Why does the US have to get involved in every international incident involving drugs? Maybe we are still supporting George W Bush’s alleged college cocaine habit :-)

    The AirBus A380 is HUGE

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    I was looking to book tickets for holiday travel and ran into this airplane. Not literally, but, I found it while searching around online. And, I’ll admit, I know this is old news…But this double decker a380 AirBus airplane is insane!

    I couldn’t find any pictures of coach, but I found this picture of the First Class Cabin. Um, i don’t usually fly first class…it’s a big waste of money..unless you have a boat load of it…but, i would gladly trade in a down payment on a mortgage for a first class ticket to Singapore, direct from New York…non-stop for $25,000 (purely speculation).

    This layout of the AirBus A380 is really just showing the most basic way of laying this thing out.

    I am sure, like anything custom made for you for $380 million dollars, you can add a casino to the second floor…or maybe enen a strip club.

    I’ll take two of these insanely cool airplanes please!