Friday, August 29, 2014
Thursday, August 28, 2014
A young man of average physical skills decides to commit himself to becoming a professional soccer player
To get to a higher level you need connections. So I decided to email dozens of professional clubs in England. I got one reply from AFC Wimbledon based in London, which back then were in the 5th tier of English soccer. The coach said I could train with them, so I flew over to England. I trained with their U17's and I was told I wasn't good enough after two or three sessions.
I brushed that experience off my shoulders, went back home, kept training with the goal of improving.
By December of that year, I was invited to train with the U/17 Australian national team who were preparing for the World Cup. Might I add, I wasn't "invited" - I was just lucky that their training base was in my hometown, and my bullshit email to ask if I could "continue my professional training regime" was one of the few which were read and replied to.
That was an amazing opportunity for me. Training in an full-time environment where the pitch was perfect, kits were laid out nicely and the balls used were the best you could get. That was motivation, but sadly after two trainings, the coach thought I was nowhere near a standard to compete.
I always ask the coach what I could of done better and need to improve. Whether it's faster decision making, or strength, etc - after each trial I've always taken their "feedback" into consideration and acted upon it. This Kaizen method of constantly reviewing what I can improve each week, is what was/is slowly making me a very good player.
You can buy The Academy: Game On at Amazon:
The Academy is an International Sports Mecca for teen athletes. There are only two ways in. Deep pockets or enough talent to score a scholarship.
Young tennis star Maya's dreams have finally come true when she earns a scholarship to The Academy. Plucked from her small town, Maya moves to the sports training facility/boarding school to (hopefully) start the beginning of her pro career. But Maya's fantasy of The Academy doesn't quite match the reality. Because where there are hot, talented teens, there's a lot of drama. Meet the players:
Nicole: A tennis star who feels threatened by Maya (but she'd never admit it).(Bolding from the official description.) Via.
Cleo: Maya's rebel/punk roommate who is nearing the top of the golf world.
Renee: The gorgeous swimmer with enough money to buy her way into The Academy.
Travis: The son of The Academy owner--perfectly groomed to be the next NFL star.
Jake: Travis' younger brother--the bad boy to his brother's good.
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Monday, August 25, 2014
Saturday, August 23, 2014
Thursday, August 21, 2014
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
The ugly shirt from William Gibson's outstanding Zero History is real:
In their malware demonstration, the researchers used a distinctive image to signal to their software that the scanner should replace a certain person’s image with an innocuous one.
My son Gabe has a Minecraft Realm that he and his friends play on. It’s a service that Mojang offers allowing you to rent a private server. You need to specifically invite people to the server otherwise there is no way for them to join. As a Dad, I like this much better than having him out there playing on public servers. It’s not full weirdos who might be preying on kids, but it is full of 9 year olds and that presents its own problems.
These kids spend a lot of time on their Minecraft projects. I’ve been on there and seen massive statues, elaborate games and machines, sprawling castles and even a five-story hotel. On more than one occasion I have had my son come to me in tears because something on the realm was destroyed. In spite of the posted rules explaining that no dynamite is allowed it seems there was some mad bomber wreaking havoc. Unfortunately up until recently Minecraft Realms had no log of player activities. I had no way of determining who the vandal was beyond calling all the parents. Which is what we did.
My wife and I would reach out to all the various folks whose kids were on the Realm and ask if it was their special little angel who was blowing shit up. Now as the father of a 9 year old myself I can tell you that they are liars. So when you ask them if they did something they will just say “no” and in this case I really had no evidence so without someone taking responsibility I couldn’t do anything. That is until a recent update added a log that showed when players logged on and off. It wasn’t much but it was something.
The most recent attack took place a few weeks ago. This time a series of skyscraper sized statues was blown to pieces. The extent of the destruction lead my to believe dynamite was the culprit. The bomber had struck again. My son began restoring the Realm based on previous save files automatically created at regular intervals. We went back hours and then a full day before finally the statues appeared before us once again. Now we had a time frame for the crime but we still had no suspects.
My wife opened up the activity log and began cross-referencing the log in times of the various children with the what we believed was the time of the attack. A few names matched up as being online during that window but we still needed to narrow it down. I went back to the crime scene hoping it would give up a few more clues. These statues were actually massive recreations of specific player’s avatars. These kids all had custom skins and they had recreated them with blocks acting as pixels. There were three names on our list of possible suspects and I was looking at the ruined statues of two of them. Unless I was to believe that one of them was smart enough to destroy his own creation in order to throw me off the trail, I knew who my bomber was. Unfortunately it was the one kid I really didn’t want it to be.
Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Thursday, August 14, 2014
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
Monday, August 11, 2014
Sunday, August 10, 2014
Saturday, August 9, 2014
The pretzel lobster is a pretzel shaped like a lobster tail, stuffed with buttercrunch and peanut butter and served salted with whipped brown-butter-honey sauce. Via these sites.