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Showing posts from March, 2008

soccertv.com is no more, it has ceased to be...

soccertv.com is no more, it has ceased to be, it has gone to meet its maker...

soccertv.com was an essential site for soccer fans in the US. Way back when, in the early days, soccer programming was scant to say the least, and unpredictable. It was hard to know when the precious few games would be broadcast. It was during that time that Oliver Tse created this site and struggled to present soccer tv listings in a timely manner. I remember I contacted Oliver during those early days and volunteered to call Telemundo once a week, and pass the listings for the weekend to him. I did this for a little while. Eventually, Oliver figured out how to populate this data automatically and soccertv.com became the authorative listing for all soccer on US tv stations. The user interface was spartan and efficient. Many of us relied on the information on this site day in and day out.

Olivier announced a few months ago that he was selling the site, to focus on other activities. Today I had to look up the t…

RWC School Board March 5th Budget Meeting

On March 5th, the Redwood City School District held a special meeting to discuss the impending budget cuts. This is a brief report of this meeting. This is not my own editorial comment about the situation. That might follow later.

The meeting took place in the School Board's meeting room, filled to capacity. The whole School Board, the Superintendent and other district staff were present. Contrary to my expectations, the purpose of the meeting was not to discuss which specific cuts are expected in Redwood City given the 10% across the board cuts proposed by Sacramento. Instead, board member Shelly Masur told us that the purpose of the meeting was to mobilize the community to see what we can do to prevent these cuts from taking place.

The Superintendent started with a brief speech in which she emphasized the great progress Redwood City schools have been making and how the proposed cuts would "slam the breaks" on this progress. She pointed out that we've spent around a m…

The emotional roller coaster kicks up again

California is bracing itself for a new set of budget cuts. This time, the proposal is to cut 10% across the board, including the education budget. In Redwood City, this means about $700 less per student per year, a huge amount in a state that already is at the bottom of the rankings for amount spent per student in the US. As parents, we've seen this before. Another set of cuts, another set of meetings, another set of bad choices to make. Every few years this happens and it's an emotional roller coaster. No wonder public school enrollment is declining. People can only take so much of this abuse and I assume that the ones that are not devoted to public education and have the means end up leaving the public system altogether...

The reasons for the funding woes of public schools in California are complex and historical. For a great overview check out First To Worst, a great documentary that explains the whole funding mess and how we got here.

Given that we cannot expect much from th…

Paul Thomas Anderson: more of the same

After seeing Boogie Nights and Magnolia I decided not to see movies from Paul Thomas Anderson again. I found both movies hard to watch for one simple reason: the writer/director hates his characters and revels in seeing them suffer for no apparent reason. It's really hard to watch a film where the characters go through bad stuff when you don't care about them at all. And you can't care for them, because the director does not care for them. It all becomes a spectacle of suffering for suffering's sake. I don't have time for that.

But I thought "There Will be Blood" would be different. It has good reviews (for some reason all his movies do), it has Daniel Day Lewis (always good) and to top it off, a music score by Jonny Greenwood. So, we went to see it.

What we found was more of the same. No love for any of the characters. The insane-for-no-reason oil man, the minister, the son, the brother... you can't get attached to any of these characters. And therefor…