10,000 hours of practice

It is funny to me that the biggest message that most people seem to have gotten out of Outliers  by Malcolm Gladwell is the 10,000 hours of practice to be an expert idea. Even people who have not read it have received that idea. And like so many sound bites, it is a faulty message. Because it is not just 10,000 hours of practice, it is 10,000 hours of deliberate, focused practice with the intent of becoming good at whatever it is.

Growing up, I put in quite a few hours of practice playing the piano. Am I any good at it now? Minimally. Why? Because the practice I put in was casual and indifferent, with no focused attempt to understand what I was doing or how to become really better. I was punching the time clock, not actually trying to master a skill.

Simply doing something you want to do for 10,000 hours is not going to make you an expert.

Let’s be random

  1. Why aren’t there more cooking tv shows that actually mention working with whole wheat flour? I mean, it’s becoming a big thing in the grocery store – a lot more people actually eat whole wheat bread. Yet I’ve not yet seen a single show that mentions baking of any sort with whole wheat flour or other flours. Why not?
  2. Once again, advertising ignores the deeper reality in a way that I find annoying, because it emphasizes the shortcut over the actual investment of time and effort. Advertising Miracle Gro planting dirt, they show a normal soil in a suburban yard, which is less than desirable. And do they suggest that it might take a while to correct this problem? Do they even hint at the idea that it would be good to feed the soil compost, mulch, or any other kind of nutrient to feed the soil? Of course not! they only suggest that the answer is to mix in the Miracle Gro “soil” that will allow your plants to grow. It makes perfect sense!
  3. I am so tired of this chilly weather. No longer are we getting really cold weather. Just chilly. But still…I am tired of it. I want some warmth. (whine, whine, whine, yes, I know)
  4. I had an idea of a bag using the wrapped cord technique that I learned at guild. But, a really big tote bag, not a small little stiff bowl. I wonder if it would work?
  5. Last night and tonight, and probably the next few nights, I am madly scanning in photos, etc. in order to create a slideshow for my parent’s 50th anniversary party. I’ve been wanting to do something like this for a while, so it is a good opportunity to get moving on the job.

Green Hornet review

Green Hornet 3D

I went to see it this weekend and both enjoyed it and disliked it intensely. As a retelling of the original story, it did horrific violence to the plot. As an entertaining story of today, it was okay, and even rather funny, with a lot of cool tricks.

What bothered me about the plot changes was not the details : that the father died or that Kato and Britt didn’t meet until after the father’s death was ultimately minor. What did bother me a great deal was the character of Britt Reid. They turned him into an arrogant, stupid, careless idiot who went into the role of Green Hornet with zero forethought or realization of what to do or how to do it. With the way they set it up, the relationship between Kato and Britt was fundamentally unequal in precisely the opposite direction to the original storyline. While I agree that greater equality in the roles of Hornet and Kato was an excellent idea, the way they went about it was actually less equal. And I liked both characters less.

And the violence! While I always thought that the comparative lack of violence in the original was unlikely in real life, that didn’t mean I was willing to go in the opposite direction and let them turn into killers without a second thought. No regrets about killing even a bad guy? Not one second thought about sending police cars into life-threatening accidents?

In the end, I did find the stunts cool, the fight scenes appropriately spectacular,  the repartee somewhat humorous,  but I certainly wouldn’t bother to see it again.

Oh, and the 3D was a waste. I barely noticed it.

Shades of gray


It’s not that black and white.

In fact, I think this is a prime example of the black and white view being about as bad as a lie. Personally, I find it insulting.

huh, I didn’t realize my picture was that bad — Here’s the blurry text.

Top quote:

The Bible: “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent.” I Timothy 2 (New International Version)

Bottom quote:

Humanism: “The rights of men and women should be equal and sacred—marriage should be a perfect partnership.” Robert Ingersoll, in a letter dated April 13, 1878

in the dictionary

Sorry for long silence, I really do intend to finish the questions and projects listing, etc. I’ve just had problems due to some kind of weird inflammation of right arm that makes typing difficult, and had other things that I HAD to type, so blogging has to wait.

But this was just fascinating — we made it into the dictionary! frog