Tag: snow

Shaq and Snowfall

Ok, this is how information should be presented!

Too often we don’t have a reference point for data…really, do you know how tall 80.1 inches really is?  The Boston Globe (see here) created this info graphic to represent the snowfall in 2010/2011.  They did a fantastic job.

 

Here is why it works:

1.  Shows data relative to something that we know – we can put it in context

2. Graphically simple – yet conveys a lot of information

3. Fun – how can you not chuckle when you see the Shaq-o-meter

 

Today I Am Grateful For: A Torn MCL

Ok, I might be trying a little hard to find some gratitude on this one, but…

I was skiing last week with some friends while we were working on developing a conference (a cool conference that includes skiing activities that help solidify key insights…yes, the one I talk about in the previous post…but that is another story). On the last run of the second day (after I had written the previous post), I caught an edge, had the tip of my ski catch and flipped over, twisting my knee. At the doctor the next day, they said that I have a slightly torn MCL.

This week I came out to Montana with my family and some friends to ski at Big Sky. We had planned this vacation for months.  We were looking forward to having some time away, teaching our kids how to ski, and enjoying the mountains.

Everyone skied yesterday except for me.

I did a little work, took pictures, captured some video, and got groceries.  I kept myself busy.

Today they are off again but instead of keeping myself busy I’m all alone watching the snow fall down at a rate of a few inches an hour (fresh powder). I really want to go out on the hill and ski – but my knee is not quite ready (hopefully tomorrow).

But here is what I’m grateful for…I have a day to relax and enjoy. I sat this morning with a cup of coffee watching the snow fall softly and cover the evergreen branches with a white coat.  I watched a bird I couldn’t recognize fly into the evergreens and saw the snow cascade down in a torrent to the ground as the birds wings hit the branches.   The mountain is hidden in mist and snow, but outside is beautiful. There is a calm quiet that permeates this place which I can’t find in Minneapolis. I’ve been given a day of contemplation. One in which I can think and be grateful for all that I have.

I could be bitter…I could be mad at the fact that I am stuck here now because I was stupid last week.  But what good would that do me?  So instead I choose to use this time and enjoy it.

I choose to be grateful.

And so…while I would like to be out skiing and feeling the fresh powder under my skis…I am thankful for this alone time in such a beautiful setting.

Today I’m Grateful For: Mountain Time Reflection

I am in Colorado working/playing with a few friends planning a future conference. While we have probably been playing more than working (we talk work on the ski hill, but I can’t really call that work) this time has given me some moments of reflection that I wouldn’t normally get. It is refreshing to step away from everyday life to gain some perspective. Looking at the breathtaking vista’s from the top of the mountain really make one thing about how we fit into the world. Feeling the sun in your face as you glide down the ski hill makes me focus on what is really important in life. Having a beer and sharing stories about the day reinforce the fact that we are social creatures.

I am very grateful for this time of reflection.

Today I’m Grateful For: My car window being unstuck

There is a sense of justice in the world. As I wrote about yesterday, my car window was stuck open in the middle of winter in Minnesota…and I was grateful that it happened when it did for a number of reasons (see below).

But I’m even more grateful today!

I was on the way to bring the car into the local auto repair shop that is located a couple of miles down the road. I was getting the kids bundled up and the Au Pair ready to take the other car to the shop so that I would have a ride home instead of walking two miles in 18 degree weather.

If you’ve ever tried to get a 1 year old and a 4 year old ready for the snow, you know this is not always easy – so after 10 minutes of haggling, we were ready to go when I realized that the car keys for the 2nd pick-up car were in my wife’s purse with her at work. Ok, unbundle the kids and readjust plan. Now I’ll pick up my wife at the end of the day and we’ll get the 2nd car and drop off the broken window car after that.

Here is the good part…

On the way to pick up my wife, with the plastic taped over the open window, I gave the window button one more try…and to my amazement, up it went!

So I’m grateful that I didn’t have the keys for the 2nd car when I was going to take the broken window car in. I’m grateful that the window miraculously fixed itself. I’m grateful that I saved a few hundred bucks that I am now going to give to charity (Worldbuilders through Patrick Rothfuss’ blog – you should check it out).

All in all – just very grateful!

Today I’m Grateful For: My Car Window Being Stuck Down

Pulling into the parking ramp before my Rotary meeting today, my car window went down but it didn’t come back up…and I’m grateful for that. I know you are thinking “Huh? Have you gone bonkers?” But here is why I’m grateful…I could have been driving down the interstate at 60 miles per hour in the 18 degree weather we have (I wasn’t). I could have to park my car on the road and get the snow plow coming by and sending a foot of snow into the car (I don’t). I could have been at the airport and had to leave my car with window down for a week (I’m not). Thus, in the big scheme of things, this could have been a lot worse and I’m grateful for that.

Its all in how we frame things…as the quote on the bottom of my e-mail signature line says, “”There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” Shakespeare

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