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Archive for June, 2013

One with nature.

Friday, June 28th, 2013


Camping; ‘getting back to the basics to enjoy the earth and all that it has to offer.

Shot on an iPhone by Rick Painter

The Lost Art of Human Interaction

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013

Many of us are guilty of it: using our technological devices to avoid human interaction whether we are walking across campus or waiting in line for a reservation or activity. Sure, our devices can be used for entertainment purposes during down time, but are we using them as a crutch to condone our lack of social connection?

An article in the Wall Street Journal explains digital communication as a diminished substitute for face-to-face interaction. When distance made seeing someone impossible, the telephone enabled us to keep in touch. Both the computer and hand-held electronic devices further facilitated these distant connections. While these technological improvements removed some of the stress from our busy lives, too many people use them as a substitute for face-to-face communication.

Digital communication may be more convenient, but it is also lacks the emotional component. When did being actively engaged in the present take a back seat to second by second updates on Twitter about Kim Kardashian and her baby’s name?

If society continues down this path, we have a pretty grim future in store. No matter the technological advancements, face-to-face interaction will always win. Emotional investment is hard work, but as Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs chronicles, it is necessary for society to achieve fulfillment.

Instead of picking up your iPhone to send a text message, meet up for coffee or attend an exhibit with someone ‘ imagine it.

The speed of light.

Friday, June 21st, 2013


Is it a bird, a plane? Moving art, standing still.

Shot on an iPhone by Paul Bell.

Four-legged friends.

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

The business of pets has skyrocketed in recent years resulting from not only an increase in pet owners, but the way pet owners look at their pets as part of the family. Pet owners today want to provide their canine and feline housemates with comfort and even luxury living. Although it might appear shocking to some that our friends on leashes are living the premium, the demographics and attitudes of pet consumers have inspired the industry to maintain the highest standard for pets.

Dogs no longer get the scraps from the dinner table; in fact they are often eating better than their owners. Many pet owners will cut back on their own groceries, to make sure that their pets get quality food. It is not uncommon to find pets that maintain strict vegetarian, vegan, or paleo (mimicking the eating habits of caveman ancestors) meal plans. Even organic pet food stores have sprung up in cities like New York, San Francisco, and Denver. According to a recent New York Times article, sales of organic pet food have increased tenfold since 2002.

Besides a wholesome eating regimen, pets are also treated to impressive wardrobe collections. With the introduction of Purse Puppies and other tiny canines, owners have been spending a surprising amount of time shopping for clothes to keep their pets both warm and stylish. New online pet boutiques have launched, encouraging owners to promote the personal style of their pet through accessories and clothes ranging from ‘conservative cardigans to cool jeans and casual tees’.

Additionally, technology has found its way into the market as pet lovers combine with Silicon Valley. The latest ‘must have’ in the pet market is a tracking device that attaches to a pet’s collar and sends reports to an owner’s smartphone, giving the owner a chance to watch their pet while at work. The technology also collects and analyzes patterns of their pet’s health to curb illness before it becomes too serious.

The increase in stores that welcome barkers of all sizes and shapes with a tasty, unprocessed treat could quickly be replacing toy stores. Jonathan Last, the author of What to Expect When No One’s Expecting, cites a new population phenomena: As population rates are rapidly declining; statistics report that there are now more dogs than children in the United States.

As pets appear to be the new ‘children’ in today’s society, it will be quite intriguing to observe the trends and longevity in this new, high-consumption market. Can the purchases for pets to be pampered in regal standards be justified when there are vast amounts of causes needing both attention and finances? Ranging from poverty to education, one can’t forget the countless pets in animal shelters that don’t have homes. The line of humane and inhumane treatment of our pets has been largely exaggerated; and all pet owners and lovers should keep such standards in perspective.

Sky and sea.

Friday, June 14th, 2013


Looks can be deceiving. Are fish flying?

Shot on an iPhone by Jon Keeling.