Daily Archives: March 29, 2009

What fat lady? The best opera divas now are anything but


The Times online has an article on the best classical divas currently performing. Besides the analysis of what makes each singer noteworthy, there are also clips of some of them performing. It’s worth a look for opera fans (and non-fans too).

And who do they think is #1? Anna Netrebko (pictured here).

Want a great dashboard on the state of the economy?

Then you want to see this one from Russell Investments. It illustrates “a few key economic and market indicators to help assess the current economic health and trend”. And it illustrates it well, shockingly so. For example, this chart:

The blue range is “typical” and under 3.5%. As you can see, the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009 is anything but typical.

There are some good indicators, including a number of 3 month trends that show things moving out of the extreme areas and back towards typical. Indeed, some metrics, like credit risk and consumer spending, are in the typical range. However, economic expansion is not only out of the typical range, but it is trending away from it.

I’d keep an eye of this dashboard.

How to run better? Try caffeine

The NYTimes.com has a good analysis of whether or not caffeine can help your performance when you run. It turns out that it is very likely it does help, although not everyone is keen on its benefits, as the article explains.

If you are thinking about using caffeine during a race, try it out on training runs before you do. You may find that you don’t like the results. If you don’t, you want to discover this before your big race, not during.

Read the article: it does a good job of providing the details on the benefits of caffeine and running.

(photo by Flip Kwaitkowski for The New York Times)