A few years back, when I was in 3rd or 4th Grade, my brother and I went to visit David and Jesse Lenat at their Cactus Farm. While we were exploring the green houses, their dad, Richard, gave us each a cactus to take home.
Mine lived in a small pot near the window through the rest of grade school and high school and then my mom cared for it through college. It grew into a little cluster of pencil thin green, spiky pads over the years.
After I graduated, moved to California, and got an apartment in SF; I was home for Christmas one year and took one of the pads wrapped in tissue to California. It grew well there and now produces big, bright yellow flowers every year.
This Christmas, I stuffed two tiny buds into glass bottles and brought them to Iraq and planted in the yard with one of the cat’s help (paw in the background).
As you may have heard, California Governor Jerry Brown has signed legislation repealing the law that had forced us to terminate our California Associates. We are pleased to invite all California Associates whose accounts were closed due to the prior legislation to re-enroll in the Associates Program.
The Amazon Associates Team
I first read this as Amazon giving up and quietly reinstating their associates program and thus paying the sales tax they owe. Alas, not the case. I guess California vs. Amazon, Amazon wins.
What happened in March of 1997?
- March 4 – U.S. President Bill Clinton bars federal funding for any research on human cloning.
- March 6 – President of Guyana Cheddi Jagan dies in office.
- March 6 – Pablo Picasso‘s Tête de Femme is stolen from a London gallery (recovered a week later).
- March 6 – In Sri Lanka, Tamil Tigers overrun a military base and kill more than 200.
- March 11 – An explosion at the Tokaimura nuclear waste reprocessing plant in Japan exposes 35 workers to low-level radioactive contamination, in the worst nuclear accident in Japan’s history.
- March 13 – India‘s Missionaries of Charity chooses Sister Nirmala to succeed Mother Teresa as its leader.
- March 13 – The National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China creates a new Chongqing Municipality, out of part of Sichuan.
- March 13 – The Phoenix Lights are seen over Phoenix, AZ.
- March 16 – Sandline affair: On Bougainville Island, soldiers of commander Jerry Singirok arrest Tim Spicer and his mercenaries of the Sandline International.
- March 18 – The tail of a Russian An-24 charter plane breaks off while en-route to Turkey, causing the plane to crash, killing all 50 on board, and resulting in the grounding of all An-24s.
- March 21 – In Zaire, Etienne Tshiksekedi is appointed prime minister; he ejects supporters of Mobutu Sese Seko from his cabinet.
- March 21 – Mercenaries of Sandline International withdraw from Papua New Guinea.
- March 22 – Tara Lipinski, 14, becomes the youngest women’s world figure skating champion.
- March 22 – The Comet Hale-Bopp makes its closest approach to Earth.
- March 24 – The 69th Academy Awards, hosted by Billy Crystal, are held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California, with The English Patient winning Best Picture.
- March 26 – In San Diego, California, 39 Heaven’s Gate cultists commit mass suicide at their compound.
- March 26 – Julius Chan resigns as prime minister of Papua New Guinea, ending the Sandline affair.
Time Zones are a peeve of mine I’ve been trying to get sorted out for years. I’m not alone either, at least one rant has been cross-posted. The gist of the problem is embodied in the following:
You are in California on the phone with someone in Boston planning a phone conference from 10:00-11:30 am for next week at which time you’ll be in London. What time should you set the conference for? Can you do the math? How about if you’re in Phoenix in April? There are 31 time zones and almost all contain some regions that observe and some that do not observe DST. This is the sort of irritating arithmetic my computer should do.
Time zones are actually very easy to handle – and it is also easy to give reminders to people as to what time zone they are in all in one simple modification to the “new appointment” and “new task” dialogs: just add a start and end time zone for each that defaults to the current time zone the computer is in. Why both start and end? Because when you get on a plane you very frequently start in one time zone and end in another and airlines give you takeoff and landing times in the local time zones.
We’re using Zimbra ZCS these days, a pretty nice program, but they handle time zones worse than any modern program I’ve used. Hopefully they’ll fix it to something like this: