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What are Spite Houses?


I love this piece on a rather odd thing: The Spite House, an Architectural Phenomenon Built on Rage and Revenge.

Spite houses can be houses or buildings or any structure built not so much to be lived it as they are the express a very negative emotion. Once you know about them, you will be surprised you know more of them than you thought.

I don’t think I’ve ever been that spiteful that I would go through the trouble of spending all the time and money to get back at someone. But that’s not true of everyone, if you read that article.

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The challenges of taxing the wealthy

Is outlined here: Taxing the Wealthy Sounds Easy. It’s Not. – The New York Times.

It’s worth a read. It’s thoughtful, even if you may not agree with it. Also, just because something is not easy does not mean do not attempt it.

Taxing drives behaviour. My thought is drive behaviour in the right direction.  Tell affluent people to use their wealth in directed ways that improve our society or tax them so that it can be done. If they disagree, then it is time to make explicit the social contracts in place and ask what has to be changed to make for a better society. Because for most societies in the world, including Canada’s, the social contract can be a lot better.

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A masterwork of maximalism

Is this home featured here: This Cozy Minnesota Home Will Make You Want a Candelabra | A Cup of Jo

You really out to go to the site and check it out. Meanwhile, here’s a peek to show you what I mean:

Some thoughts on this:

  • There is a ton of objects in this photo, but they are orderly. There is a place for everything; things aren’t just thrown about.
  • The objects are all attractive: nothing is just stuck somewhere.
  • It helps to be in a nice room, but the good thing about maximalism is that you can turn even a boring box in to something attractive. (Much harder to do with minimalism
  • The colour scheme is consistent here. That helps rest the eye as it moves around the room.

I highly recommend you go to Cup of Jo linked to above and see the rest of it. It’s inspiring for maximalists like myself. 🙂

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For fans of faux calligraphy

Some fantastic fun links:

  1. 60 free minimalist fonts for your designs – Learn
  2. 60 free calligraphy fonts to bring charm to your designs — Learn
  3. 50 free stylish fonts to bring a touch of elegance to any design – Learn
  4. The Ultimate Guide to Font Pairing — Learn – Learn
  5. 60 free sans serif fonts to give your designs a modern touch – Learn
  6. 11 Simple Hand-Lettered Fonts For Your Bullet Journal | Little Miss Rose
  7. Three Ingenious Hacks to Fake Brush-lettering | Little Miss Rose
  8. 8 Fancy Hand-Lettering Ideas That Are Actually Easy
  9. How to “Fake” Calligraphy | I Try DIY
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How to make a man’s Zara suit look expensive


GQ has the five good ideas here: 5 Tricks That’ll Make Cheap Suits Look More Expensive. I said “Zara” but you could do the same with lower end suits as well.

I’d add:

  1. Get the whole suit tailored to fit. They mention the sleeves, but if you get the jacket tapered to your body, the impression of fit will be strong and it won’t look off the rack.
  2. Go with a conservative colour. I like this suit over the one in the GQ article. It’s somewhat bold with windowpane plaid (vs pinstripe or solid), but the charcoal grey tones it down. Grey suits and jackets are deceptive: even the cheapest of them are hard to guess how expensive they are unless you look closely and know clothing.
  3. Go with good accessories in general, not just shoes. A great watch, French cuff shirt with cufflinks, a beautiful tie: all of those things give an impression of being expensive. Be bold here. I like how the suit pictured is paired with a shirt and tie that have a tiny pattern to compliment the larger pattern of the suit. It’s a good look. And his shoes stand out in a good way and look great with the tapered pant.

For details on this suit, go here.

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Two ways to do the Toronto International Film Festival (tiff)

Here are two ways to do TIFF:

  1. There’s the way most people do it, which seems awful: The TIFF ticketing system is a total nightmare this year.
  2. There’s the way my friend Annie does it, which seems great: A day in the Life of a Torontonian: TIFF 2019 – Advanced Screenings

Now Annie’s way is going to cost more, but if you want to have an enjoyable experience and get the most out of a great festival, then read up on how she and her husband do it.

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A love story of a different kind: love of the small phone


This is a love story in a way, although it’s a love affair with a device: Tim Cook Will Have To Pry My iPhone SE From My Cold, Tiny Hands.

It brings up an interesting thought: that for all the seeming abundance of smart phones, they really have narrowed into a specific style and range. They are all large, glass devices with fancy cameras. That’s what sells, and manufactures have no desire to make anything else. Or maybe they are fearful of trying to make something else.

Some event will occur and innovation and diversity will come to the personal device market. But for now, expect more of less.

(Image linked to in the article)