Playing With Pictures

Wednesday, 10 June 2009, 14:28 | Category : Nature
Tags :

During my time away from blogging, among the things I did was take an Alaskan cruise out of Seattle. I was going back through some of the pictures I took, and found one of a wildflower, probably a Shasta daisy. I have a thing about taking pictures of wildflowers, especially when they show up where flowers shouldn’t by rights be. (This one, however, was right where it should be). But in playing with the picture in Paint Shop, I discovered I liked the water-color treatment better than the actual picture:

Alaskan wildflower

You can click on the picture to see the full-size image.

Here’s the original photo:

Alaskan wildflower

Bailouts and Bankruptcies

Wednesday, 10 June 2009, 12:51 | Category : Life, Politics
Tags :

Chrysler’s emergence from bankruptcy and yesterday’s acquisition by Fiat got me thinking. As I understand it, the bankruptcy allowed Chrysler to basically shed all the bad things – high labor costs and years of debt – and keep just the good things. I do wonder where exactly the good things have been hidden all this time, because cars and trucks don’t seem to be among them. Chrysler’s quality is almost always near the bottom of the rankings; in Britain, they are ahead of only one company in perceived quality – Fiat. And my one experience with a Chrysler product, a 1984 Dodge Daytona, has made it so that I’ll never buy Chrysler again. That car was in the shop 45 times in 48 months.

But I digress. As I said, yesterday’s news got me thinking about ways this methodology could be applied in other areas. Football teams could declare gridiron bankruptcy and emerge in a couple of weeks having shed their losses, proclaim themselves undefeated, and proceed into the playoffs. Where, of course, they would be about as successful as the new Chrysler-Fiat marriage (Chrysiat? Fiasler?) will probably be.

Graduating college students could declare academic bankruptcy and expunge all grades below a B from their transcripts. That would help tremendously with their job search, or pursuit of graduate school. Until, of course, the same traits that rewarded them with that D in College Algebra will smite them with the mighty arm of reality. Maybe there could be a bailout package for them then, to pay for all those things that a salary would otherwise have handled.