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Lube Oil and Filter

LOF.  That is the parlance used by auto mechanics in America when you take your car in for an oil change.  Lube refers to the bygone era when a bunch of mechanical moving parts in your conveyance needed lubing as in lubricating.  Grease and waxes and what not.  Nowadays not so much.  Everything is enclosed and hermetically sealed from the elements.  But this old phraseology remains with us in the days of electric mobility.

As far as oil is concerned that is the one that needs replacing every 7,000 miles or so.  Esp for a petrol powered automobile that most Americans use.  That is a lot of distance to travel in many countries.  But for an average bay area commuter like me it means 100 round trips to work, which could translate into 3 months of time.  So net every three months I am faced with the prospect of getting this vital fluid swapped.  From the engine.  Of my trusty conveyance that transports me effortlessly to work and back.  Daily.

Now lastly we come to the filter.  A metal me…
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Where are you from?

What is it about this question that likely gets asked hundreds of times every day by someone who meets another someone for the first time?

Where are you from?

'Earth' would be a sarcastic response.  Especially if the asker is also from earth and they were standing on said earth at the time of the Q and A.  Alternately the askee would typically respond with an answer that conveys their place of birth.  Sometimes it also conveys the place that the askee grew up or did some key part of the growing.

The asker is trying to categorize the newly introduced specimen into a frame.  Or perhaps it is idle chit chat and the asker does not give a cent what the askee responds.  That would also border on the rude.

The said categorization is our human filing system.  'I am from Norway' would shed some light to the asker especially if they have an idea of what Norway is.  And the asker might have follow up questions to that response.  If the asker is clueless they may move on to sport…

Enjoying Animals - Deux

Warning - some readers might find the narrative below somewhat macabre for their taste (no pun intended) and are urged to read the previous post for their (culinary) enjoyment.

After writing about my likes for what constitutes food I thought I'd do the brain stretch for the morning and imagine what we might taste like to an alien form interested in consuming a new find.

Like insects which number in the billions and have yet to make an appearance on the mainstream earth bound dinner plates, the aliens perhaps have been looking into humans as a novelty?

Who knows if unbeknownst to our high tech they have been making regular visits and plucking some of us to suck on or grind or make a new bouillabaisse with?  Wonder what their Bourdain equivalent might be showing their kids on TV?

In a galaxy far away children there are these bipeds who do bizarre things all day long.  They seem to wander from one point to another and back like clockwork on certain sun cycles and repeat that process…

Enjoying animals

For many this phrase might conjure images of pets or seeing certain fauna in the wild.  Some in the air, land or water.  Dense jungles perhaps or a fancy safari on the continent.

I am referring to the animals on a plate.  I was not born a carnivore.  Far from it.  Growing up in a middle class household in Bombay (now Mumbai) we were not much of food explorers or critics.  We just ate it as a requirement couple times a day and moved on.  As a child I could discern a dish that my mom made versus an aunt's twist on the same.  I spent equal parts surviving in a day care as I did at home so the day care lady had her own take on what constituted food.  All of the above was 100% non animal meat based diet.

Then I got to meet a friend couple of my dads.  This family had their roots in the coastal part of the state and were fans of seafood.  I got introduced to my first prawn and fish on a plate at their place.  Then came another friend who brought a pink slender meat tube which we cooked…

Electric mobility

San Francisco's hipster status lives on.  The trend may be noticed in the foods or what constitutes nutrition that people are putting down their hatch, or their sense of style the latter manifest now in the way they get around.

From 'Limes' to 'Birds' there are a slew of what was a kids get around toy is now primary transportation again, type movement (no pun intended) afoot.


Some of these contraptions are scattered around the street or sidewalk like an errant child would choose to do ...




Or being driven around silently (did I mention that these are all electric?) with people wearing headphones to block all ambient sound.

For those that like what Churchill said - why stand when you can sit - they can opt to do it with Ford - electric bikes..


And if merely sitting is not your thing of course San Francisco has you covered.  You can JUMP...

There are big money partnerships happening with Jump doing an integration with Uber for the last meter hurdle...

Of course after…

Implementing a Design

I have become a formal student.  Again.  In the evenings.  I am taking a course on 'Design Implementation - taking an idea to market'.

In the course of my varied career I have had the privilege of sorting out different types of problems.  Some had to do with information technology.  Some were process design or re-design.  I also taught students early in my career.  At times I counseled some senior leaders in a business on perspective.  Fresh set of eyes or something like that.

Now I am curious about the formality of design.  How does one design?  An object, a service or a process.  What are the goals of design?  What cues do you pay attention to?  What makes it worthwhile?

All of the above I realized could also be summed in a quote I read during my time as an engineer taking Total Quality classes - What problem are you trying to solve?  It is harder than it sounds.  Can take days to define and define well.

Someone looking for a drill bit is not looking for a tool they are loo…

A history of presidential naps

As history goes there are many outlandish and intriguing stories.  Some times facts stranger than fiction.  One particular theme I have noticed in reading history written by famous authors on various continents, some autobiographical is that prominent personalities too had their foibles.

Calvin Coolidge was famously known to only work four hours a day on average as the President of the United States says  Bill Bryson in his history book for the stories from 'One Summer -    America, 1927' and therefore so titled.  He liked to nap or stare out the window at passing cars on Penn Avenue.  A historian from his time penned - no President ever slept so much.  Of course we will have to wait for history to tell us what Trump's schedule is.  Some have commented that he sleeps very little and is eager to get back to Tweeting.

Winston Churchill tells George VI, his king at the time of the second war that he likes to nap at 4 pm everyday and when asked by his majesty if that was perm…