Sunday, March 29, 2015

My view on how prayer works...

I believe in the effectiveness of prayer, but only when certain conditions are met. Let me explain:

First, there must be sufficient time for the process to work, and the more the better. Short term wishes can't produce miracles!

Then, there needs to be total mental dedication to the goal prayer must attain; half-baked hopes won't work either.

Finally, the results prayed for must be attainable, which means somehow realistic, explainable, even by a long shot.

When these criteria are present, you can pray and it will get you to your goals...

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Ski equipment makers: Please, simplify!

Early this week, I visited Rossignol's North American Headquarters, right here in Park City, and had a chance to take a glance at its showroom where next winter's collection was on display.

I was absolutely overwhelmed by the massive quantity of models available, which to most of us would be incredibly confusing. Could ski companies streamline their offering and make it easier to digest for retailers who are the first in line, scratching their heads?

I think so; there would be a lot to gain in production cost, sales expenses and all kinds of efficiencies, but like a long story that is easier to write than a short one, having the seemingly reassurance that all bases are covered is the (lazy) shortcut favored by the ski industry.

Of course, it takes more time and work to be concise, but in a stagnant to declining market, the company that understands and is able to put that principle into practice is poised to win big!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Picking the right ski...

I don't know when you last set foot in a ski-shop, but if you haven't for a long time and were to pick a pair of ski, you might be in for a shock. That shock would be the result of two things, the astronomic prices and the plethora of choices available.

Of course, if you go just now, at the end of the season, the inventory you still might find could reflect the year's sales activity and unless your region has suffered a snow-drought like ours, in which little equipment has sold, you may find the "ugly duckings" that no one had the gumption to buy.
If you walk today inside a Utah ski shop, you'll still find the whole selection and may ask yourself: “Do I need a double rocker, a cruiser or something in-between?” Unless you can afford to own three specialized pairs, the latter question might be the right one to ask and answering it might lead to the pair of ski you just need...

Thursday, March 26, 2015

“Cloud” storage on top of black boxes...

These stories of black boxes that can or can't be located, then can or can't be deciphered should now be relics of the ancient aeronautical history. Planes can communicate with satellites, upload and store their info (cockpit and cabin voices or noises and engineering data) in real time on the cloud via satellite relay.

I could understand that, in order to be redundant we'd keep these “boxes”, but all flight data should be transmitted electronically on an ongoing basis to a safe and secure location away from the aircraft. Seems like a no-brainer to me.

If such a system had existed, it's quite plausible that the cockpit door could have been unlocked from a ground safety crew, just like satellites can unlock car doors when you lock yourself out...

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

How to make a quick million...

This is a story of a house in my neighborhood that was put on the market last summer for $1.2 million and purchased for a bit less by a local contractor.

The guy did remodel the house over the winter and after some modest, mostly cosmetic updates, he is now putting it back on the market for about twice the price he paid for ($2,330,000!)

My guess is that – at the most - he might have invested $250,000 maximum into the home and now hopes to pocket the difference. Will this happen? I don't quite think so because the house and the area are more in the $1.5 million than the $2 million plus range.

Is he just greedy? Definitely, and most of the time that trait makes people blind to the most basic economic realities.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Tidying up my office...

Yesterday, I didn't go skiing; instead, I finally began to tidying my office. My wife had reminded me – in no uncertain terms – that my place of business was a mess and that I had to do something about it. So that's how the project got started.

I hate to sort things out and have to decide which I throw away and which I keep. It burns holes in my brain and must take years away from my rapidly dwindling life expectancy. Not just that, but when I decide to keep something, then I must decide again where to put it away. Now, it's almost done; let's say it's 99% handled and I won't worry about that remaining 1%.
It will soon hatch back and multiply to return to a full 100%, but for the moment, I can at least appreciate the fact that “a clean desk is sure sign of a sick mind” This quote, often attributed to Albert Einstein, goes in fact something like this : “If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?”

Monday, March 23, 2015

When man-made snow pays off big!

As my 30th ski season in Park City comes to a tight close, it's now pretty easy for me to admit that it was the worst I ever experienced in Utah, both in terms of thin snow and high temperatures. Yet, our three resorts were able to survive, helped in large part by “Lady Luck” and snow-making.

Some were better than the others with creating that critical man-made cover. For one thing, Canyons suffered from its lack of snow-making infrastructure and remained at the bottom (I didn't ski much there), Park City did okay, but Deer Valley really offered the best conditions throughout, with a thick layer of snow all over the mountain.
I bet this season's will have a large impact on the way our resorts see snow-making next season, and with two world-class organizations now heading our remaining two resorts, this will bode well!