tulips in the pot

Tulips from Best Market, April 13.



2017.04.30, tulips in sunset


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Sewol; Titanic; Sullenberger; subpar

Almost three years to the date, the South Korean ship Sewol sunk. Passengers were mostly a secondary school kids and they called and sent text messages to their parents and loved ones. I watched the news with my heart bleeding: how did the parents of the students survive such tragedy: it happened on a clear morning and the ship was only 2.7 kilometres (1.7 mi) from land. As a swimmer, I thought, gosh, just jump and swim! Wikipedia has a very detailed record of the sinking of MV Sewol.

Recently, South Korean president Park Geun-hye was impeached on March 10, 2017. Today a Chinese blog post links Park to the incident, claiming why Koreans hate her so much, which made me to check out the wiki article. This much is for sure:

  • 476 people on board, 304 died.
  • Among the 172 rescued were ship captain, 14 crew members and the vice principal of Danwon High School


As I’m reading the recount of the incident, I thought about white haired sea captain played by Bernard Hill in Titanic: as the water rushed in, he stood firm, and the band that played on as the ship was sinking. I also thought of pilot Chesley Sullenberger who landed US Airways Flight 1549 on the Hudson River on January 15, 2009: he was the last one to exit the Airbus.

Is this my prejudice or I’m onto something that’s real: that Asians are just sub-par?

All photos are from internet.

三年前的四月十五号,韩国船只世越號沈沒. 乘客大多是学生.  翻船的早晨天气晴,离地面只有2.7公里(1.7英里)。孩子们发出的电话和短信 … 看到这个新闻时我的心脏在滴血:学生父母们是怎么忍受这种煎熬?作为一名游泳爱好者, 我想,天哪,只要跳进水里,游泳吧! 英文的维基百科有非常详细的记录.

最近,韩国总统朴荣惠在2017年3月10日被弹劾. 今天一个中文博客写道 304具学生尸体 … 韩国人为什么这么恨她.
这让我重温维基文章. 这几点是可以肯定的:
获救的172人中 有船长,14名船员,及丹原高中副校长

我一边看一边想 … 我想到了泰坦尼克号的伯纳德·希尔(Benard Hill)所扮演的白头发的船长,当水冲进来时,他还稳稳的站在他的岗位上; 当船向下沉没时, 那个乐队还在演奏。 我还想到了机长 Chesley Sullenberger,2009年1月15日 他在美国航空1549号航班 紧急降落在哈德逊河上: 他是最后一个离开机舱的人.

这是我的偏见 还是次货 (算过分吗)? 俺们亚洲人怎么啦??


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Herbert and Dorothy Vogel

Talking about the love of arts! Very New York!

Herbert (1922–2012) and Dorothy Vogel (1935-) are a New York couple whose art collection is legendary, especially he was a postal worker sorting mails in the nights and she’s a librarian with the Brooklyn public library. In this interview, she praised her husband for having an incredible eyes for arts. (She’s a little defensive, very sweet). Megumi Sasaki made two documentaries about the couple,  Herb and Dorothy in 2008 and 50×50 in 2013.

Here is Chinese 中文介绍

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National Drink Wine Day

Feb 18 is the National Drink Wine Day in the United States!!! Don’t you just love this country?

  • Only one a day, my dear, that’s my secret.
  • Doctors recommend one glass of wine per day
  • I limit myself to one glass of wine a day
  • Oh boy
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Classical music on youtube, esp violin concertos


Many performances have large followings on youtube, some are over eight digits hits:


  • Violin Concerto # 5 2,060,316 Mutter directs it herself

P. I. Tchaikovsky – Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 35:

Tchaikovsky – Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 23.

A few other

  • Hilary Hahn’s Mendelssohn has 8,925,905 (just garners 2,869 hits in 40 minutes)
  • Swan Lake by Kirov Ballet 22,885,610
  • Sibelius Violin Concerto by Vengerov/Barenboim, Chicago S.O. (CSO) 2,232,926
  • Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto no.2 op.18 – Anna Fedorova 9,813,962
  • Anne Sophie-Mutter – Mozart Violin Concerto # 5  1,819,403 she conducts

Some performers

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Shame on the school

An incoming freshmen kid from Beijing is happily showing off one of her top picks. For reasons not too clear why would I click the picture but I spot the wrong word in the second paragraph:

After careful review or your academic and …

It should be an of. What a shame on SVA – School of Visual Arts in New York, a bad example.

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Michael Lewis’ new book

His new book, The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds, is about the psychologists Daniel Kahneman (1934-) and the late Amos Tversky (1937-1996). As the saying goes that truth is indeed stranger than fiction, one of Lewis’ favorite grad student is Tversky’s son.

Tom Wolfe refers to him as “probably the best current writer in America.” I think he rightful is. In this LA Review of books, the journalist compares Lewis to Malcolm Gladwell. Although I enjoyed Gladwell’s Blink but … wait, how ironic: Gladwell’s book is on the power of thinking without thinking, all about gut feeling directs one’s action but Lewis’ says why gut instincts are often wrong.


俺的男神又有新书出版: The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds 撤消项目:改变我们的心灵的友谊 (?) 是关于二个以色列心理学家丹尼尔·卡尼曼(1934-)和已故的阿莫斯·特沃斯基的没有性的爱情故事.
卡尼曼年幼时, 从7岁开始, 有七年时间和他妈妈捣单. 14岁以后才修心养性. 他说这本书也是七年之痒的作品. 他和卡尼曼是一步之遥的邻居 – 巧合. 他开始想写这本书时 卡尼曼不同意. 觉得他的搭档已经过世 担心书会欠公平. 卡尼曼是2002诺贝尔经济学奖得主. 路易斯用了一年半的时间说服他. 然后又是二年深度了解. 路易斯还和卡尼曼去了一趟以色列, 参观军事机构: 直到今天, 军官们都是通过心理评估选择的,而这些是由卡尼曼50多年前开创的.
路易斯生长在新奥尔良. 爸爸是公司律师, 妈妈说社区活动家. 路易斯在普林斯顿主修艺术史, 1982年毕业后他先在纽约纽约艺术商工作. 然后在1985年获得伦敦经济学院的硕士学位. 在一个晚饭上坐在所罗门兄弟合伙人的太太旁边, 毕业后受雇于所罗门兄弟,他在伦敦办事处工作,担任债券销售员.
他说写作一直是他的梦想. 在所罗门兄弟任职期间他一直有投稿. 二年后他赢得四万美金的书合同. 立马辞职去完成他的第一本畅销书 Liar’s Poker (骗子的扑克):描述了他在80年代后期作为债券交易者的经历。
我’认识’他就是从这本书开始. 一发不可收拾. 他的书都是纪实 non fictions; 笔锋幽默 思路清晰. 撤消项目是他第十六本书. 其中三本已被搬上了大银幕: The Blind Side (2009;橄榄球), Moneyball (2011;棒球;这部电影被提名六个奥斯卡奖,包括最佳男主角皮特,和最佳影片) 和 The Big Short (2015) 后二部是 Brad Pitt 皮特演的。
路易斯经常为金融杂志写文章,纽约时报,名利场等等. 他的稿费大约是$10一个字, 一篇文章通常1万多字。很少有作家能和他平起平坐. 汤姆·沃尔夫称他为“可能是美国当前最好的作家”。我觉得他是是美国当前最好的作家。

也有人把路易斯和马尔科姆 Gladwell比较。 虽然我喜欢Gladwell的眨眼,但是觉得没有的比。 另外很有趣的是:Gladwell的眨眼是有关于直觉的指挥一个人的行动, 而路易斯的书说为什么直觉本能常常是错误的。有得争论了。 wenxue

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After Meeting Trump, Japanese Mogul Pledges $50 Billion Investment in the U.S.

For once, the Donald looks presidential. That son of Japan looks like a huckster, to say the best, who wears a burgundy color vest? Oh boy.

By the way, which sector could really create 50k jobs?? Mr Son certainly can use a dental improvement. The videos/ and Link here.

The brash and outspoken founder of SoftBank, Masayoshi Son, has long been known for his outsize ambitions, from taking on the United States’ biggest telephone companies to creating a $100 billion fund for technology deals.

On Tuesday, Mr. Son, a Japanese mogul, struck another big pledge after meeting with President-elect Donald J. Trump: to invest $50 billion in the United States, a move that he said would create some 50,000 jobs.

But the $50 billion investment pledge is not an entirely new initiative that SoftBank is undertaking. Instead, the money is projected to come from the Japanese company’s previously announced Vision fund, a $100 billion vehicle for investing in technology companies worldwide.

The fund — which includes Saudi Arabia, a target of Mr. Trump’s ire during the presidential campaign, as a key partner — was always expected to strike a significant portion of its deals in the United States.

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Mr. Son said the new jobs would come from investing in American start-ups. Mr. Trump later declared on Twitter, “Masa said he would never do this had we (Trump) not won the election!”

Mr. Son’s visit to Trump Tower in Manhattan on Tuesday was the latest outreach by global business leaders to an incoming president seen as friendlier to corporate interests. On Friday, the Trump transition team announced the formation of a business advisory group, led by Stephen A. Schwarzman, the chief executive of the private equity behemoth the Blackstone Group, that would consult monthly with the Trump White House.

The advisory group was noticeably shy of technology names; Mr. Son is perhaps the most prominent tech executive so far to have met with the president-elect.

Although it has its headquarters in Japan, SoftBank has deep roots in the United States. It is the majority owner of the wireless operator Sprint, which two years ago unsuccessfully pursued a takeover bid for T-Mobile. That effort was effectively blocked by the Obama administration on antitrust grounds.

Mr. Son was not expected to discuss specific issues with Mr. Trump during their meeting, including the prospects of renewing a Sprint bid for its rival, according to a person briefed on the matter. Shares of Sprint and T-Mobile briefly rose Tuesday afternoon, before giving up their gains.

Beyond what Mr. Trump and Mr. Son said, “we aren’t able to say more,” a SoftBank spokesman in Tokyo, Matthew Nicholson, said.

“I just came to celebrate his new job,” Mr. Son, 59, told reporters at Trump Tower. “I said: ‘This is great. The U.S. will become great again.’ ”

Such bold talk is customary from the American-educated Mr. Son, who has built one of Japan’s biggest personal fortunes through sometimes brash deal-making. SoftBank, which began life as a software distributor, became one of Japan’s biggest phone service companies through shrewd negotiations that gave the company early exclusive rights to the iPhone. It has since become a global empire with stakes in the likes of Sprint and Alibaba Group of China and in a welter of start-ups in the United States and abroad.

This year, Mr. Son struck a $32 billion takeover of ARM Holdings, a British chip designer whose products sit at the heart of devices like the iPhone.

Like the president-elect, Mr. Son has been known for sometimes impolitic remarks. As Mr. Son sought to compete against Verizon and AT&T with his investment in Sprint, he compared the quality of American wireless service to the air quality of Beijing. And he threatened to set himself on fire in the offices of Japan’s telecommunications regulator on at least one occasion.

In speaking with reporters alongside Mr. Trump on Tuesday, Mr. Son clutched what appeared to be a presentation from the meeting. One page featured the logos of both SoftBank and Foxconn, the Taiwanese manufacturing giant that assembles Apple’s iPhone. On the page — and circled — was the text committing to investing $50 billion in the United States and generating 50,000 jobs over the next four years.

Below it appeared to be Mr. Son’s signature.

Foxconn said in a statement that it was in preliminary discussions about a potential American expansion, adding that the scale had not yet been decided. Foxconn has said in the past that it plans to expand its limited operations in the United States.

Any Foxconn investment is not likely to mean a major flow of jobs back to America. The company has been plowing funds into automation and has said in the past that it would invest in a plant to build robots in Pennsylvania, indicating that new American jobs would probably be higher-end and limited in number.

Foxconn employs about one million workers in China. But many of those jobs are low skilled, and as overall wages have risen in China, their pay levels have become less appealing to workers there. Maintaining enough staffing to meet production needs can be a challenge.

Jonathan Soble and Paul Mozur contributed reporting.

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Is this for real? Really??? Trader’s mistake? Confused with Singapore $? One US dollar is worth more than 7 yuan – RMB. Oh my.  Howeverm Yahoo has at ¥6.878 and Bloomberg at 6.8815.

img_4001 2016-12-05-6 2016-12-05-5 2016-12-05-7


是不是交易员大乌龙 和新加坡元搞混了?

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Poke …

FaceBook has a feature or used to: poke. People poke each other for fun, for a little attention, to say hello.

The media is going wild over Trump talking a call from Taiwan.

Pls, people, get real.

  1. He’s NOT a president yet
  2. Taking a congratulating call from your good if not big customer is good business practice
  3. I think Trump is poking China, to say, I’m won’t bend over like Obama
  4. China should have more confidence (when you’re truly strong/great, I bet Taiwan would cry/knee down to beg to join … until then, make yourself great?)

Everyone is magnifying and scrutinizing Trump’s every move. Gosh, I’m sure the Donald is loving it – that’s why he ran in the first place – that everyone is talking about him.

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Pouring first part of the mat foundation!

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A wise man submits to fate

Chinese has an idiom: 识时务者为俊杰, means servers are clever or whoever understands the times is a great man, or those who suit their actions to the time are wise. The youths in Hong Kong are misguided, who should learn this before continuing their journey. Abducting book publishers/sellers are terrible … but China is the ultimate sovereignty of Hong Kong. HK has always been a middlemen, a great one but that role is diminishing as the world becoming increasingly flat/connected.

On a personal level, I think the snobbery plays a role here. The HKers see the poor and uncouth cousins now have outearned and outspent them, that doesn’t sit well with the proud Hong Kongers. But as the title says,  识时务者为俊杰. Wise up and move on.

SCMP reports:

Chris Patten to students: Hong Kong is not a nation state, do not deceive yourself
The city’s former governor pulled no punches in rebuking youth at a university seminar also attended by pro-independence lawmaker Nathan Law and activist Edward Leung
PUBLISHED : Monday, 28 November, 2016, 11:31pm
UPDATED : Monday, 28 November, 2016, 11:41pm

In a surprising move, former governor Chris Patten has waded into the debate about what qualities a “good chief executive” should possess, while also pulling no punches in rebuking students who aspire for independence.
Patten said the chief executive should be a representative of Hong Kong’s people. But when asked to ­assess Leung Chun-ying’s performance and discuss who should be the city’s next leader, he said: “I wouldn’t dream of interfering in the process.”
He went on to say: “I think a good chief executive in any governing system should listen to a wide group of people and be decisive … and mobilise consent.

Democracy doesn’t have to mean independence ->

“He should be able to represent Hong Kong to Beijing and the international community, and not be thought to be Beijing’s representative in Hong Kong.”
Patten was speaking to the press after a seminar with students at the University of Hong Kong on Monday.
During the two-hour talk, he took about 13 questions from students, many of whom challenged his views on Hong Kong’s independence. Among them were localist lawmaker Nathan Law Kwun-chung, and independence activist Edward Leung Tin-kei.
If you think in the next two to five years, you can overthrow the party and Hong Kong can become independent, I just think you are deceiving yourself”

Patten did not mince words, telling students: “I am going to say something which you may not want to hear: Hong Kong is a great society. It is not a nation state.”
On students’ views about independence, he added: “I just happen to think – you are wrong.”
Leung questioned why Hong Kong should not separate from China. Patten replied: “I am a huge admirer of China, Chinese culture, Chinese history, Chinese art … I am not a great fan of Leninism or the Chinese Communist Party.
“But the Communist Party is at present ruling China. If you think in the next two to five years, you can overthrow the party and Hong Kong can become independent, I just think you are deceiving yourself.”

Ignore people’s aspirations at your peril, Hong Kong’s last governor warns ->

He reinforced his support for democracy, but also reiterated views he had put forth during a speech at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club last week, warning against confusing universal suffrage with independence, adding pro-independence antics served only to erode support for democracy at home and worldwide.
The full-house event was jointly organised by the Project Citizens Foundation and the students’ union of HKU.
Patten, 72, was the last governor of Hong Kong, serving from 1992 until the 1997 handover.
He is now a member of the House of Lords and the chancellor of the University of Oxford.

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Khatia Buniatishvili

She’s a Georgian concert pianist. One of my faves.

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Rainy days are for book, music and tea

Or wine. A rainy day ☔️💧💦是抱着🍵 🎵 看📖天. Asiago 芝士 [强]. 不☔️ 会觉得☀️太多 … ☔️时又觉得懒惰 [闭嘴] 人挺难伺候的 [偷笑]

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American comic: New York and Lee

doctor-strange-cloakIf it were up to me, I won’t go to see Dr. Strange. Not my type. But, as the self-centered Benedict Cumberbatch realizes, we need to learn to comprise, from time to time, JK -:). I’m very glad to have gone – thanks children – a great movie that I really enjoyed. The audiences agree with me, in two days, we forked over US$325.4 million, doubling its budget of $165 mil. The movie is very much in line with the comic, even the red cape is as memorable as in the comic.

Comic characters have been hot in the recent decade or two. At the center of it all, is Stan Lee and New York City.  The 93 years old New York Jew, Lee’s last name was Lieber who began his career in 1939 Timely Comics, with a job that’s making sure the ink for cartoonists were filled.

img_2432DC (detective comics) and Marvel were/are the two major American comic houses that both started in New York. DC used to be on 4th Avenue in NYC, moved to Burbank CA in 2015 has Batman and Superman while Marvel that still headquartered in NYC, and associates with Lee owns pretty much the rest well known characters – Spider-ManIron ManCaptain AmericaHulkThorFantastic FourDaredevilX-Men; Ant Man …, so many to list.

img_2435Although all these superhero characters live in a far away universe but their human flaws make relate-able, that they come from a normal kid who’s NOT the coolest and most popular, actually just the opposite.

Lee’s a few long time associates: Jack Kirby (a NY Jew) Steve Ditko & John Romita, Sr. a New Yorker. Kirby has passed away. Unlike Ditko shuns limelight, Lee makes cameos appearance in all the movies (Google All Stan Lee cameos – here is one, updated to Deadpool 2016): look for his in Dr. Strange too “this is hilarious…”

The part of Wang and Hong Kong is a nice touch for getting the Chinese market, I suppose? Zhang Yimou is directing a $150 mil budget movie with Matt Damon, coming Feb 2017 (trailer), for Chinese New Year, probably.

Today is also the New York City Marathon (NYT coverage), the largest in the world. Mary Keitany of Kenya won her third consecutive victory in 2 hours 24:26 and 20-year-old Eritrean (Eritrea Africa) – the youngest winner in race history, Ghirmay Ghebreslassie, won in 2:07:51.

You go New York!

img_2426如果取决于我,我是绝不会去看 斯特兰奇博士。 不合俺口味。 但是,正如自我为中心的卷福(本尼迪克特·康伯巴奇)意识到的,我们需要学习包容,(多少开玩笑哈,JK – :)。 我很高兴已经去看了 – 感谢孩子 – 一部 写的好/ 拍的好/演的好的电影,我真的很喜欢。 观众同意我的看法,在两天内,我们花了3.254亿美元 票房纪录. 电影的预算仅为1.65亿美元。 这部电影非常符合漫画,甚至红色披风也像漫画一样难忘。

漫画人物在近十几年来一直很热。 在这一切的中心,是斯坦李和纽约市。 93岁的纽约犹太人,李的姓氏原本是Lieber,他的职业生涯开始于1939年的 时代漫画,主要工作就是填补墨水 – 确保漫画家们的有足够的墨水。

DC(侦探漫画)和Marvel是两个在纽约开始的美国漫画公司。 侦探漫画曾经在纽约的第四大道,在2015年迁到加州的Burbank, 有蝙蝠侠和超人,而 Marvel 总部仍然设在纽约,与李的联系深厚,几乎拥有其余的知名卡通人物 – 蜘蛛人; 钢铁侠; 美国队长; 绿巨人 雷神; 神奇四侠; Daredevil; X战警; 蚂蚁人… 手指不够用了. 多不胜数.

虽然所有这些超级英雄角色生活在一个遥远的宇宙,但他们的缺陷使我们可以产生共鸣. 这个可能和李及几个长时间同事的背景有关 – 他们都没有背景. 来自一个正常的家庭,再普通不过的孩子 –  绝对不是最酷和最受欢迎,实际上恰恰相反。李的几个长时间的同事:杰克柯比(纽约犹太人)史蒂夫·迪特科 和 约翰·罗米塔(也是纽约人)。 柯比已经过世了。 与Ditko不同的是,李喜欢打酱油,在每个电影里演个微不足道的角色(谷歌所有Stan Lee的故事 – 这里是一个,更新到 Deadpool 2016 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CvIX1SIJkg):寻找他的 Dr Strange 里的角色 … “这真可笑…”

Dr Strange 里 王和香港的部分对于获得中国市场是一个很好的办法.  张艺谋正在指导一个1.5亿美元的预算电影与马特·达蒙,2017年2月(预告片),农历新年上演.

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The top level domain names

They expand from initial 21 generic names, such as .com, .edu and .gov etc. to current 1000+, including non English. Each top name cost about US$180,000 to apply. Google is the second largest applicant with 100+.

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The annual fee on hosting site Dream Host varies: .car and .cars are the most expensive so far, costing US$2,500; .theatre is $625, ( .theater is $49.95)  .movie is $299.95, the least expensive ones are .xyz, .club, etc., cost less than a dollar a year or for the first year.

Looking at .theatre and .theater example, I’m wondering how to deal with  刘/劉  and 张/張 – paying double?

顶级网络名从最初的21个通用名称(如 .com, .edu .gov 等)扩展到当前1000+, 包括非英语.  每个顶级名称申请费大约 18万美元. 谷歌 Google 是第二大申请人, 拥有超过100+ 个.

托管网站 Dream Host 的年费差别很大:.car.cars 是迄今为止最昂贵的, $2,500; .theatre$ 625,(反而 .theater 是$ 49.95).movie 是 $ 299.95. 最便宜的是 .xyz.club 等, 少于 1 美元一年或第一年.

签于  .car 和 .cars, .theatre 和 .theater 例子, 我想 刘/劉  和 张/張  也要付双倍!?

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Manhattan condos and Chinese buyers

The reports of Chinese snapping up luxury/trophy properties in major cities, in China and aboard are nothing new, we have been reading them for a few years.  But I only get to see it first hand this week when my friend with three friends came to New York on a condo buying spree.

His friends have a New York real estate broker lined up. The group leader asked him at a dinner if he would like to tag along. Initially, my friend has no desire to buy but to visit his kid in US. However, as more home work was done, he began to change his mind, and ultimately, put a deposit down on a condo he found online, before leaving for US – the condo has a sales office in China. The deposit is totally refundable upon the inspection in New York. All without the help of the NY broker the group retained, who gave no information other than a few pictures of two buildings they’d visit. When I heard this and saw the pictures, my thought was, either the broker doesn’t care or the broker deals with too many Chinese buyers (who, in general, require very little since they don’t know what to ask …), taking them for granted.

The broker lined up 10 buildings to visit – the group has no idea/info of the buildings and sequence. At the very first one, the broker said, ” … the condos may be gone by tomorrow …” so two of them bought, one each @ $2.81 million. It’s outrageous. Perhaps this is the reason the broker refuses to provide any info: needn’t to. The buyers buy indiscriminately and decisively.

I thought Carrie Chiang who was recruited by Barbara Corcoran in 1988. She’s still with Corcoran. Her annual property listing is $200-300 million (a little trouble 2009). I doubt that Chiang takes anything for granted.

With my resources and my friends, I’m able to put together a team that will take care of condo buyers’ need with honesty, from buying to renting. Contact me if you need the following services:

  • finding the property
  • visit/inspect
  • real estate broker/attorney/CPA/estate planning
  • mortgage broker
  • appraisals
  • rental management
  • insurance


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Ants have mercy



imageThey eat my flower.
They’re so tiny.
How could they climb so high?
But high, they did.
I preyed.
I begged.
Begged for their mercy.
And mercy they did.

All are taken by cell phone, from yesterday except this one, which is just now, today: mostly eaten away by the ants.

image image image image


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