A Ricksha With A Worthwhile Message


This guy is pedaling this ricksha around town in Maryland, USA. 

And it carries messages of hope and peace. 

Some examples (visible in the photo):

– “Promote the Olympic spirit.”

– “Hope for world peace.”

– “Protecting mother earth.”

It looks like he could be right off the streets of China or something and transported here to deliver and remind us of these important ideas. 

What is interesting to me is that in this day and age of social media and online advertising where messages are often drowned out amidst the daily deluge we get, that here a simple ricksha can grab people’s attention and perhaps have a positive influence on them.

With just some subtle messaging along the vehicle’s canopy and with pictures and flags around the back.

Perhaps it’s not only how much one advertises and promotes, but how thought-provoking and novel it’s done. 

I don’t know how many miles this guy can pedal a day, but I bet he gets more likes than much of the garbage just being throw up online because it’s so easy and available for everyone to do. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

No More Flooding With Permeable Pavement

Very cool solution to flash flooding called Topmix Permeable by Tarmac (a U.K. sustainable building materials company). 

The concrete literally drinks up hundreds of gallons of water. 

Where the heck does all the water go? 

If you’re walking, no more soggy shoes and pant’s bottoms. 

If your driving, even more important is the potential life-saving element for about 75 people that die in vehicles every year when they try get caught in the vehicles in flash flood conditions. 

Also, many potential accidents, injuries, and deaths could be averted by people whose car’s go hydroplaning on wet road surfaces.

Finally, think how transportation would be faster and more efficient (with less traffic) from better road conditions with innovations like this.

With this new material on our roads and some added heat elements to prevent snow and ice, we got some darn good road-safety going on. ;-)

Beautiful Brookside Gardens

IMG_1108 FullSizeRender FullSizeRender (9) FullSizeRender (8) FullSizeRender (7) FullSizeRender (6) FullSizeRender (5) FullSizeRender (4) FullSizeRender (3) FullSizeRender (2) FullSizeRender (1) IMG_1147 FullSizeRender (10)

Today, we visited Brookside Gardens in Maryland.

My daughter needed to do some drawing for her art class.

We took the opportunity to enjoy the unbelievable beautiful nature there. 

If only the whole Earth was allowed to exist in such pristine form. 

No overcrowding, overdevelopment, and polluting of the planet. 

Just respect for Mother Earth and the bounty and miracles we are allowed to enjoy. ;-)

(Source Photos: Andy Blumenthal)

Lights, Camera, Inaction

Inaction 2

So the lights dim, the camera starts to roll, and what happens…


The show starts…actors spring into action, and the plot takes shape–we have a positive influence and impact on our fellow man and the world we live in. 

But there is a sorry alternative storyline.

Where after the lights and camera…nothing happens.

There is a eery silence and a weird INACTION!

Like the actors are asleep at the wheel, went off to play golf or to comedy night, or perhaps went home to momma, and are cowering, and hiding under their beds.

Is this the unfortunate state of our country today?

The world is our stage. 

As the sole superpower, the United States is the prime actor today.

We have our calling to go do good–to help, to save, and to bring peace and freedom. 

But lo and behold, what happens when we have a policy of inaction?

Where we want peace, but are not willing to do to much of anything for it or perhaps in spite of it. 

So how is our world faring today:

– In Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan, Libya, Sudan, and more, millions are dying and injured, while tens of millions are fleeing, displaced, or are in refugee camps, and chemical WMD are in use by Syria and ISIS, while our red lines were drawn and then withdrawn, and we don’t know if we are training the opposition or throwing in the towel on the ground.

ISIS, Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Boko Haram, etc. are rampant and overrunning the Middle East and North Africa, killing, torturing, raping, destroying, and plummeting, as well as recruiting back in Europe and here in the States, amidst calls for attacks against us and our allies. 

Russia takes Crimea and is resurgent in Eastern Ukraine and the Arctic, and antagonizing all around Europe with ever encroaching warplanes and warships, and militarizing and modernizing their formidable nuclear arsenal, and we stand up a new NATO rapid reaction force, while we are again surprised by Russia, now in Syria.

China is expanding into the South China Sea, flexing it’s economic and military muscle, and cyber attacking and stealing our vital government and economic information assets with relative impunity, while we trade with our partner and pivot this way and that. 

North Korea restarts it’s nuclear plant, readies for another banned missile launch, sinks South Korean ships, plants deadly landmines on the South’s side of the demilitarized zone, and provokes toward a military confrontation, while we lick our wounds from the last broken agreements with them. 

Iran has stymied the people’s freedom movement, executed the opposition and homosexuals, builds toward a deadly nuclear and ballistic missile future, seeks the destruction of America (“The Great Satan”) and Israel, is massively funding and arming their terrorist proxies to the tune of billions of dollars, and has gotten a get out of jail free card and sanctions lifting.

So what can we do?

Well in the past, we were a meaningful deterrent to countries and people doing bad things. 

We stood proudly and tall for human rights, freedom, equality, democracy, anti-proliferation, and sustainability.

We didn’t have to fight everywhere to make our point–but just knowing that we were willing to stand for righteousness and justice often meant those with evil intentions stepping back and rethinking it.

Occasionally, we did have to put our blood and treasure where our mouths were, and perhaps we often did this too rashly and imprudently (when diplomacy or some saber rattling might have done the trick). 

However, the world cannot afford for us to be war weary or chase empty legacies of peace built on blind hope or a running away from our responsibilities. 

While the world burns, we can’t be looking for Nobel Prizes instead of seeking out the fire extinguishers and medical kits to save and to heal. 

As it is so wisely stated: “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

Peace is not born of inaction, but of brave actors willing to do what is necessary to achieve all that is good and all that can be done. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Keys To The Kingdom

Keys To Kingdom

Ah, so good to be given the keys to the kingdom. 

Even if only for a day. 

What to do:

– 1st key – Heal the sick, feed the hungry, raise the downtrodden.

– 2nd key – World peace, for sure. 

– 3rd key – Revitalize our ailing planet and make it sustainable.

– 4th key – Unleash innovation and give everyone a decent living wage to care for themselves and their families. 

– 5th key (the Capstone) – Bring the Messiah and everyone behaves righteously and worships the one true G-d of all.

Uh, and I need one more key to balance the budget and pay off the National Debt. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Just Frogs

Frog 1 Frog 2 Frog 3

What’s with the frog infatuation–especially associated with ice cream and frozen yogurt (SweetFrog, Frogg’s Ice Cream, Frosty Frog, etc.)?

According to Save The Frogs, some interesting facts:

– There are over 6,300 species of frogs and toads (a close, warty relative of the frog). 

– They range from just 9 mm to over 30 mm and 6.6 lbs, and can live from a few years to as many as 30-years (ol’ frog river uncaring with the flow of the Mississippi). 

– Frogs are amphibians developing in their larval state in water as herbivores, but as adults living on land as carnivores (flies anyone).

– Toads tend to have poisonous secretions as does the Poison Dart Frog (maybe the princess should not be kissing that frog).

– Australian Stony Creek Frogs build nests for their eggs just like birds (got to protect those youngins). 

– Wood frogs adapt to the freezing cold by stopping their breathing, blood flow, and heartbeat (now that’s extreme hibernation).

– Similarly, Burrowing Frogs survive hot, dry climates by slowing their metabolism and shedding their skin into a protective mosture-retaining cocoon, and others can live underground for as many as 10 months and surface in mass when the rains come (like the 2nd plague in Egypt).

– Pesticides, fertilizers, and parasites have been increasing deformities in frogs such as missing limbs or having 6 legs (making jumping on 3 legs a bitch and jumping on 6 an unfair advantage). 

Frogs are a great illustration of how to “adopt or die” with the emphasis on living and thriving forward–not so sure though about frog-flavored ice cream. ;-)

(Source Photos: Andy Blumenthal)

Beautiful Labor Day Weekend

Ok, here’s my video today from The Shenandoah River along the Appalachian Trail at Harpers Ferry. 

Only I make one little mistake…see if you can pick up on it (everyone can make an oops once in a while–you just got to have a good laugh.)

Also, did you know there are 3 trillion trees in the world?

Sad though that number is almost half from the beginning of civilization and these days we are losing about 15 billion trees a year–that’s crazy!

Anyway, I still love nature and G-d’s beautiful creation and I give thanks to my maker. ;-)

(Source Video: Dannielle Blumenthal)