February 10, 2009 – 12:29 pm
Last night I watched a 60 minutes interview with Chris Martin, lead singer of a popular band called Coldplay. They won three Grammys last night.
But the interesting part for me was what Chris said about how he judges the success of a new song. When he’s onstage performing, he can’t really see the crowd but he can clearly see the exit signs. When he starts a new song, he checks the exit doors to see how many silhouettes are in the doorway. If the doorway is empty, it means no one is leaving, and that indicates his song is a winner.
This is how …
February 7, 2009 – 12:57 am
With the fog in the hills and the wild mustard in the foreground I must be in the best place on Earth! So here I am on my way to the office and couldn’t pass up this opportunity to catch this shot. When I reflect on the seasons in the Napa Valley I never get tired of the views that unveil themselves throughout the year.
When I turn on the TV, read a newspaper or scan the Net all I see …
January 25, 2009 – 11:25 pm
You can’t turn on the news without hearing about one “Ponzi scheme” or another. Who is this Ponzi guy and how did he get to be forever associated with defrauding little old ladies out of their life savings?
Well, the answer is on the SEC website. Apparently it all started with Charles Ponzi who duped New England residents out of funds using international mail coupons. Believe it or not, this happened in 1921. He promised a 40% return and would use money from one investor …
January 11, 2009 – 6:53 pm
Wow, what a year! Even the best crystal balls didn’t see the brakes being put on the economy so quickly. That said, it is time to move forward and make sure you have your plans in place for 2009. This is no time to stick your head in the sand and hope it will pass without affecting your business. Everyone is going to be effected by this recession. Only the smart, nimble and quick to change will be able to …
January 11, 2009 – 4:38 pm
There is no better gift than a nice warm security blanket. But unlike our favorite Peanuts character, we need more than a blanket to get that warm, fuzzy feeling of security. Now is the time to take a look at your processes to see where you might tighten up your procedures, review roles, or change passwords.
We’re fortunate to have our own Certified Fraud Examiner (aka Inspector Gadget), …
December 9, 2008 – 12:33 am
I had the opportunity to discover a local insurance agent’s passion for astronomy. We had just wrapped-up our Junior Achievement board meeting when we were invited to enter into Gary’s other world. He had built a specially designed observatory. With its high-tech computer system it can track the planets and stars so you can quickly find them in the night sky.
Frankly, I have not been one to spend much time focusing on the night sky but I could hear the passion in Gary’s voice …
December 8, 2008 – 11:46 pm
I’m not from around here.
Napa Valley can be an intimidating place. If the idea of wine with its white tablecloths and sommeliers weren’t intimidating enough, there’s all of that terminology that you need to understand. There are “appellations” (not to be confused with the Appalachians) and “terroir” (which isn’t to be confused with terror unless you’re a southerner who doesn’t speak French very well.) I’ve barely managed to adapt to the new directional perspective required when the coasts changed sides from left to …
November 29, 2008 – 1:31 am
I recently spent some time with the tasting room team at a local Napa Valley winery learning what was in their 2008 barrels. The winemaker described how the wine’s flavor is impacted by the soils, lighting, temperature and water drainage. Hearing all the variables that impact the flavor of the wine was interesting. However, it was amazing to taste the difference these items had on the wine. The Pinots …
November 20, 2008 – 5:43 pm
On a recent exploration into the vineyards I had the opportunity to take some pictures of the changing season. If you have been reading my prior blog entries you might have noticed the photographs that I include. Taking pictures is my way of recording what I observe at any point in time.
With fall in full swing, I enjoy watching the changes that take place in the Napa Valley. Harvest has wrapped up and the vines are getting ready to shut down for a deserved …
November 8, 2008 – 4:11 pm
A week has quickly passed since I stood on a beach in Puerto Vallarta with 20 vacationers who got to help baby sea turtles begin their life journey. As we watched the little guys and gals make their way down the beach to the water I could only imagine the adventure that awaited them. If nature has its way only 1 of every 1,000 will survive to adulthood. Thanks to local hotel workers turtle eggs are gathered each season and kept in a controlled environment until they hatch. Once the young tortuga’s are strong enough they …