Posts from March 2007

Twitter...Blackberries and the Age of Constant Interruption

Maybe it is due to my age (just kidding), my appetite for reading full sentences, my general dislike for reading long treaties online, whatever it is I have not succumbed to Twitter or Blackberries for that matter.

I still read books and magazines in print besides my online browsing.

I do not share my cell phone number with everyone. I do give my e-mail to many people but then I can always filter what comes in and decide on things that deserve my attention.

Overall I hate Constant Interruption and even though Twitter made front page news of the Financial Times today, I do not see myself Twittin' anytime soon.

How can we start and finish anything if we are constantly distracted from the task at hand?

Other out of focus stories: Take back your time and  Interruption Overload

No Pain...No Paint...SIT Design...Garden Furniture

Plastic breaks, wood chips and needs a fresh coat of paint now and then, with Spring finally here, SIT Urban Design offers a Concrete solution to our Outdoor furniture troubles. Siturban_3

All their pieces (tables, chairs, planters) are made of concrete so they should last forever...
Sit Urban Design is based in Portugal.

I discovered SIT on Behind the Curtains

On design and the outdoors: Cool in the Pool: Floating Lamps and Live more beautifully ...Design Indaba

Don't get lost in Paris...With Digi-Guide by your side

Not everyone has a good sense of orientation. Some of us even get lost when visiting new cities or neighborhoods.
If you are visiting Paris and want to keep your bearings Digi-Guide offers a service that combines an audio-visual walking guide (on a Personal Digital Assistant) and maps and directions on a Global Positioning Device.
Not getting lost will cost you 15 Euros for one day, 25 Euros for two.
Pre-order Digi-Guide and your bag of tools can be delivered to your residence or hotel (as long as the zip code starts with 75).
For things to do while in Paris, you can also take a look at Paris Daily Photo.

Eric (his photo here) documented the switch to daylight savings time  yesterday.

In the US we decided to be different this year and it took place on March 11.

Also on Foreign Trips: Going Abroad: Fodor's Travel Wire provides Tips and Stop flying blind with Amadeus great travel tools

A Sonoma Eaterie 'Bistro des Copains' takes its staff on a 2 week field trip to France

There is a town named Occidental in Sonoma County. Sam of Becks and Posh discovered a new restaurant there named Bistro des Copains located on the Bohemian Highway. Copains

What actually really got my attention in Sam's piece is the waitress mentioning that one of the owners Michel recently closed shop for 2 weeks and took some of his staff on a field trip to France to help them understand the roots of his inspiration..

How much better can it get to get your team motivated?
Call it investing in your people.

Other Sonoma and Restaurant stories: Cyrus versus French Laundry and Saint Benoit, French Yogurts from Sonoma plus Why customers don't care about executive meetings 

Green Zebra...San Francisco's Guide to Savings and Green Living

Founded by two friends, Sheryl Cohen and Anne Vollen, Green Zebra is a combination Savings Book and Guide to Green Living in San Francisco and the Bay Area.

Organized under various sections such us Get Organic, Get Moving, Get Home, Get Away, Get Healthy, the 2007 edition seems worth the $25 price tag.Greenzebra

On a practical note for those of us who do not live in the Bay Area and rarely have a chance to spend time there The 20 Simple Action Steps should be looked at.

Let me also mention Cool Our Planet a non-profit whose aim to a create a grassroots movement on environmental issues through musicians broadcasting the message.
I had the pleasure to meet one of its founder Mark Josephson and his wife Debra while in Austin for South by Southwest.

It seems that Green is going Mainstream these days. My local A&P Supermarket now invites its customers with signs posted at each register to reduce their carbon footprint as I noticed last night.

I found out about Green Zebra on Springwise

In the same line: Silverjet aims to be the first Carbon Neutral transatlantic airline

Barreling Out...Oak, Wine and a Transatlantic Venture

This humorous creation from our prolific friend, Bordeaux based illustrator Jean-Pierre Got, shares the importance of a good oak barrel to bring wine to life, from the vineyard to our lips.
Oak Tradition matches California Wineries with Top Notch Barrel Makers in France.

Call it Tradition in Transition.

Never jump in a barrel, it would make for a heady experience.

Might qualify you for ESPN Extreme Sports though!

A previous Got story: Wine, Big in China

Find Easter gems and add a British Touch to your day with 'Yorkshire Tea'

When I run into the same name twice in a week, it gets my antennas up.
It just happened with Yorkshire Tea which I first noticed earlier this week and the name popped up again while I paid one of my irregular visits to Innocent Drinks.

Yorkshire Tea comes to us thanks to Taylors of Harrogate, a family business founded in 1886.
Besides tea, they bake Tea Biscuits and Loaves.

They also run Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms (6 locations) and published Bettys' Hearts,Tarts and Rascals which goes over its long history.
Bettys (Mail Order) offers a wonderful choice of Easter Specialties (both for kids and grown ups) including an assortment box (pictured here) Easterbox with such things as Caramel Rabbits and Chocolate Lambs.

was always a fun holiday when I was very young. We went hunting for goodies hidden in various parts of my grandparents garden.

I have to confess I am not much of a tea drinker but manage to have a cup now and then.

Us French tend to be partial to a strong cup of Java.

A previous piece on Innnocent Drinks: Innocent Drinks, Fun, Business and Smoothies

'Inspiration is more important than knowledge' Product Poetry in Japan

How many companies use poets, even dead ones such as Charles Baudelaire to illustrate their work.

My favorite Tokyo stop PingMag tells us more about Japanese Product Poetry. I chose Inspiration comes of working (my favorite) to illustrate the subject.
Let me quote these selected words from Baudelaire so you do not have to strain your eyes:
"The purpose of human life is to serve and to show compassion and the will to help others. Creativity is the ability to introduce order into the randomness of nature. Life is an exciting business and most exciting when it is lived for others. You cannot do much about the length of your life, but you can do a lot about its depth and width..."

Vive la difference!

Jim Coudal mentioned this topic earlier today.

Also in my Tokyo File: Japan wraps its snacks in Manga and Anime

Another year, another grey hair...Serge the Concierge turns 2...Today

Time flies when you are having fun as they say.

It just dawned on me yesterday that my baby, 'Serge the Concierge', was getting close to its second birthday.
I went hunting for the first post and found out that besides being World Water Day today is the day 'Serge the Concierge' turns 2.

I have not organized any big hoopla for it but feel free to send me your wishes or thoughts as a postcard,  photo, haiku, short film, song or something edible.

I still feel a little wobbly this morning (this darn cold) but maybe after I get my strength back, I will plan a little April get together for those of you who can make it as our friend Clotilde of Chocolate and Zucchini does each year.

Above all thanks everyone for reading and commenting and keeping me honest.

Have a great day!

'The French Guy from New Jersey'

For 'World Water Day'...A Few Dry Numbers

Today is World Water Day. I harvested a few Dry Numbers from the 'Business and Water' section in today's Financial Times.

World Water Day March 22, 2007

Here, in no specific order, is information I gleaned: "A massive 400,000 liters of water goes into the production of the average car"..."Britons use about 150 liters of water a day" versus an average of 135 for most other Europeans" while the median use in the USA is 400 liters per person per day.
An hotel can consume anywhere between 90 and 180 gallons of fresh water per occupied room per day"...
As for food : "13 liters of water go into cultivating a tomato compared to 70 for an apple...for a hamburger, guess what: 2,400 liters"...

Something to talk about ...and think about

Visit the World Water Day page for more details.

Other 'Water' stories: Botted water: Up to $7,50 a Gallon