Sunday, August 30, 2009

In Bloom

It's not mine, I just really like it! 

The Magic of the Right Angle

Do not say a little in many words
but a great deal in a few.

Daily Exercise in Endless Patience

"Coaching is hard because it’s a daily exercise in achieving endless patience. Teaching is something altogether different; it involves gathering knowledge that you then give to students like a present, and wait until they return it to you. Teaching involves written judgments handed our in red marks on papers or letters etched across report cards every six weeks. Teaching says, “I gave you the information and you got it, or didn’t get it.” End of story.

Coaching isn’t teaching. There is no way a coach can do the job without getting his own hands on the ball and demonstrating, pass after pass. Coaching actually requires that students begin imperfectly, and then pass after awkward pass, fumble after fumble, the student learns the feel of the ball, the arc of the run, the timing of the turn to complete the pass. Coaching allows the student proficience that appears to come out of themselves, because that is the ultimate goal of coaching – to hand over the delight of something successfully learned and see the student bloom in their own knowledge. The judging will always come from the students’ own hit or miss experience and is forever changeable because there is always one more game, one more opportunity to get it right. The glorious thing about coaching is letting go of the student, watching them become more than themselves and many times more than the coach. There is poetry in that moment when the student surpasses themselves and you. A true coach never feels less because he understood the whole time that surpassing was the point to begin with, that watching your students find inner and outer greatness is the entire reward."

-No Telling

This is taken from a blog that I'm following and I love the sentiment that it expresses. Something to think about for all us coaches and teachers out there.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Its All Relative

Yes, we have to divide up our time like that, between our politics and our equations. But to me our equations are far more important, for politics are only a matter of present concern. A mathematical equation stands forever.
As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain; and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.
Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.
Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.
It is the duty of every citizen according to his best capacities to give validity to his convictions in political affairs.
Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen.
Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not one bit simpler.
If the facts don't fit the theory, change the facts.
Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.
The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax.
The significant problems we have cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them.
Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the Gods.
You cannot simultaneously prevent and prepare for war.
At any rate, I am convinced that He [God] does not play dice.
If A is success in life, then A equals x plus y plus z. Work is x; y is play; and z is keeping your mouth shut.
Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices, but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence and fulfills the duty to express the results of his thought in clear form.
The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.
When you look at yourself from a universal standpoint, something inside always reminds or informs you that there are bigger and better things to worry about.
You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat.
Before God we are all equally wise - and equally foolish.
Do not worry about your difficulties in Mathematics. I can assure you mine are still greater.
Ethical axioms are found and tested not very differently from the axioms of science. Truth is what stands the test of experience.
Every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life are based on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving.
Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.
Gravitation cannot be held responsible for people falling in love. How on earth can you explain in terms of chemistry and physics so important a biological phenomenon as first love? Put your hand on a stove for a minute and it seems like an hour. Sit with that special girl for an hour and it seems like a minute. That's relativity.
I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.
I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.
I never think of the future - it comes soon enough.
If I had only known, I would have been a locksmith.
If you are out to describe the truth, leave elegance to the tailor.
Imagination is more important than knowledge...
It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.
Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.
My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind.
Nothing will benefit human health and increase the chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.
Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.
Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking.
The ideals which have lighted my way, and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully, have been Kindness, Beauty, and Truth. The trite subjects of human efforts, possessions, outward success, luxury have always seemed to me contemptible.
The important thing is not to stop questioning.
The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery every day. Never lose a holy curiosity.
The most beautiful experience we can have is the mysterious.
The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science.
The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is at all comprehensible.
The release of atomic energy has not created a new problem. It has merely made more urgent the necessity of solving an existing one.
The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.
To punish me for my contempt for authority, fate made me an authority myself.
Too many of us look upon Americans as dollar chasers. This is a cruel libel, even if it is reiterated thoughtlessly by the Americans themselves.
Truth is what stands the test of experience.

Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value.

-Albert Einstein

I just love so many of the ideas Albert presents. Theres a certain tao-ishness about them and every time I come across another one that I love I think, "I need to remember to live with this sentiment present in my action," -so now maybe I will!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

I have to try making Solar jars!

The ascetic in a canoe

How can you describe the feeling which wells up in the heart and stomach as the canoe finally rides up on the shore of the campsite after a long day of plunging your paddle into rain-swept waters?
Purely physical is the joy which the fire spreads through the palms of your hands and the soles of your feet while your chattering mouth belches the poisonous cold. The pleasurable torpor of such a moment is perhaps not too different from what the mystics of the East are seeking. At least it has allowed me to taste what one respected gentleman used to call the joys of hard living. Make no mistake, these joys are exclusively physical. They have nothing to do with the satisfaction of the mind when it imposes unwelcome work on the body, a satisfaction, moreover, which is often mixed with pride, and which the body never fails to avenge. During a very long and exhausting portage, I have sometimes felt my reason defeated, and shamefully fleeing, while my legs and shoulders carried bravely on. The mumbled verses which marked the rhythm of my steps at the beginning had become brutal grunts of "uh! uh! uh!" There was nothing aesthetic in that animal search for the bright clearing which always marks the end of a portage. I do not want you to think that the mind is subjected to a healthy discipline merely by worrying about simplistic problems. I only wish to remind you of that principle of logic which states that valid conclusions do not generally follow from false premises. Now, in a canoe, where these premises are based on nature in its original state (rather than on books, ideas and habits of uncertain value), the mind conforms to that higher wisdom which we call natural philosophy; later, that healthy methodology and acquired humility will be useful in confronting mystical and spiritual questions. I know a man whose school could never teach him patriotism, but who acquired that virtue when he felt in his bones the vastness of his land, and the greatness of those who founded it.
-Pierre Elliott Trudeau

This is a part of how I felt after some of our longer portages through the Lakes at Powell River. I remember reading an Essay by the same author and the same topic earlier in my life but I can't remember if it was the same essay. When I tried to search for it this came up repeatedly so I'm thinking this might be it.... or my memory fails me. We had a great time in Powell River though not a much wildlife nor ruggedness as I might have been expecting.