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Archive for April, 2009

I recently read the wildly entertaining book, Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. It’s a fiction book, but semi-autobiographical, based upon some of Roberts’ real life experiences as a fugitive from an Australian prison who flees to Bombay and has a wide range of experiences there including living in a slum, joining the Indian mafia, fighting in Afghanistan against the Russians, and acting in Bollywood movies.

In one passage in the book, he writes about the Indian gesture, the head-wiggle (also commonly called the head bobble).

From Shantaram

“No discovery pleased me more, on that first excursion from the city, than the full translation of the famous Indian head-wiggle.  (more…)

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The NFL Draft was held and completed this weekend, highlighted by # 1 overall pick Matthew Stafford signing with the Detroit Lions for a 6 yr, $72M contract, with $41M guaranteed.  This continues the escalating, record setting trend for annual rookie contracts and is a sizable increase from the contract signed by last year’s # 1 pick Jake Long.  In the media overload preceding the draft,  I came across this question in SI.com (and NBC sports) senior writer Peter King’s mailbag that King found to be extremely insightful: (more…)

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After the revelation of steroid use by Alex Rodriguez,   I wrote about why it made perfect sense to me that the majority of  baseball players would take steroids (in the posting — Steroids and Game Theory, also re-posted at Draft MVP.)   But the next discussion I’d like to have is about the phrase ‘performance enhancing’, while leaving out the word ‘drugs’.    Many of the same reasons that players would risk their health for steroids apply to the use of elective Tommy John surgery or laser eye surgery solely to improve performance.   While not illegal, these procedures should create similar concerns as steroid use.    However, there hasn’t been much public discussion against these measures, yet there is potentially similar long-term health risks. (more…)

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Is it possible that wrist watch production and sales could actually be growing?    Conventional wisdom is that the always with you devices such as cell phones and ipods have driven down demand for watches, particularly in the younger generation who have grown up with cell phones.     Data from 2003-2005 supports this premise– here are some key stats from a Wall Street Journal article in 2005. (more…)

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