Christmas 2017

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Max received his very own pair of ice skates for Christmas. He had been taking lessons, a parent and tot class where I was able to skate alongside him, throughout the autumn. He seemed overjoyed when he opened them. Luckily, there was a small ice rink constructed on the Santa Cruz Boardwalk for the season and this allowed us to take them for a spin on Christmas day. This was also the first time that Ashley was able to skate with us. We were able to skate three-aside, holding hands: Max in the middle, a chain of arms and hands. As we were skating around the tiny sheet of ice, I felt the warmth of Max’s hand in mine. I could see the sun setting on the beach. I want to remember this moment for the rest of my life.

Fleur-de-lis

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While attending school in Louisville, I observed many fleurs-dis-lis (⚜️) throughout the city. I had seen the symbol before (most notably used by the New Orleans Saints), but I had no idea what it meant. As part of my bus commute research series, I decided to take a look and see

a) what the fleur-de-lis symbolizes
b) why it is associated with Louisville

What is a fleur-de-lis?

The fleur-de-lis is a stylized lily and is commonly used as a decorative symbol. Apparently, many saints are often depicted with a lily, which is why I often associate the fleur-de-lis with a religious connotation. It seems tied to French history and is often associated with the French monarchy, but it is often seen in other coats of arms across Europe.

Why is the fleur-de-lis associated with Louisville?

Basically, places that saw strong French settlement during European settlement adopted this symbol. Louisville was one of these areas (many settlements along the Mississippi and Missouri rivers were strong French settlements, which is why the fleur-de-lis is popular throughout these areas). It also seems likely that the fleur-de-lis is chosen to pay homage to French contributions during the Revolutionary War. This symbol is so much a apart of Louisville’s identity that it is included in the Louisville Metro Seal and the Flag.

Extract from Plato's Republic: On That Which is Correct Politically

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Smart and funny.

Horsepower

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I spend approximately 1.5 hours on a bus most workdays. I recently had an idea of finding an subject of interest and reading about it while on the bus. Topics can vary and I may include any number of links for the subject.

The first subject that I thought of was Horsepower. Specifically, I was curious about the origin of the unit of measurement. For brevity, Wikipedia did not disappoint.

[James] Watt defined and calculated the horsepower as 32,572 ft·lbf/min, which was rounded to an even 33,000 ft·lbf/min.

Source

Of course there is a standard for calculating Horsepower for automobile engines as dictated by the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), but I also find it interesting that there are other variations of the Horsepower unit in use. I figured there would be an Imperial and Metric version, but I had no idea there was a “Boiler Horsepower” or a “Tax Horsepower”.

The Loyal Engineers Steering NASA’s Voyager Probes Across the Universe

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‘‘I would not leave my wife to go with Angelina Jolie, as exciting as that sounds,’’ he told me. ‘‘And I would not leave Voyager to go to the new Mars missions. I will not leave Voyager until it ceases to exist. Or until I cease to exist.’’