Rhymes

Wu Tang Clan vs. Jimi Hendrix: Black Gold

Playing hours of Mafia 3 has made me fall in love with the song “All Along the Watchtower” by Jimi Hendrix since it’s the title track when you start the game. Yes, I know that I’m late to the party when it comes to Jimi Hendrix fandom but better late than never. One thing I was never late to was Wu Tang Clan fandom so when I found out that a Jimi Hendrix/Wu Tang Clan mash-up was recently re-released I just had to jump on it.

Black Gold, named after a demo album that Jimi recorded shortly before his death, is a 20-track independent release by British music producer Tom Caruana that blends Jimi Hendrix guitar rifts with tracks from the Wu Tang Clan’s extensive discography. The painstaking effort to make this album is not lost on me. Beat-matching hip-hop tracks with other hip-hop instrumentals is challenging enough but doing it with rock instrumentals is a greater challenge and Black Gold does it with remarkable precision. The only thing that could take this project from “very good” to “perfect” would be if the tracks had more refined endings since most of them were hard stops. I rate this a solid 4.5/5. Now, I need to make time to listen to Tom Caruana’s other projects, all conveniently located on his Soundcloud.

Notable Tracks

  1. Flying Daggers: Flying Daggers blended with Pali Gap
  2. Last Call: Last Call blended with an unreleased jam instrumental
  3. Wind Cries: Third World and Bizarre blended with The Wind Cries Mary
  4. Dirty Fox: Shimmy Shimmy Ya, The Fix, and When You Hear That blended with Foxy Lady, Rainy Day Dream Away and Happy Birthday

Wu Tang vs. Jimi Hendrix

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Bits

I’ll admit it. It’s time for me to learn JavaScript

For years I have deliberately avoided JavaScript. In my early web-surfing days during late-1990’s I managed to get a grasp of HTML but I found the JS code nestled between the <script> tags to be cumbersome and unsightly. During my college years in the early-2000’s I was introduced to PHP and became enamored with the backend web which, at the time, was untouched by JS. By the late 2000’s I developed an interest in native mobile but it has become apparent that JS is permeating the native mobile experience after already proving itself viable as a backend option.

Keep calm and learn JavaScript

When I first started my role at the NY Times, two weeks shy of a year ago, I was told that JS would be used heavily in my daily tasks however it ended up being CoffeeScript. Now, there is a push among the testing teams across the technology division to adopt the ES6 standard of JS and there are resources being made available for us to learn it. My desire was to transition to Android development and, hopefully, to pick up Golang development for backend work but since I have to learn JS for my primary work tasks I may as well learn it in-depth to understand how to use it for backend and native mobile integration. So, for the time being, I’m putting aside all else and focusing on JS ES6 development. My goal is to be full-stack proficient with it by the end of the Summer so that I can fairly assess whether it is worth me to pursue as a long-term career option or if I should go back to a Java/Android/Golang focus.

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Life

My foray into Forex

Foreign Exchange

For the last six months I’ve slowly introduced myself to Forex trading after reading an article that featured this video. I started by experimenting with binary options trading using a couple hundred dollars on the Nadex platform. After some initially positive results I ended up depleting the account but experience on an actual platform was a good teacher. While reading a book on outright Forex trading, without options, I’ve decided to do the same thing and learn on an actual platform using a nominal amount of money. Yesterday, I made my first order and lost about $70 but it was a lesson learned. I’ll wait until I finish this Forex trading book before I do more trading.

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Life

May Day

Today is the first day of May and with a new month comes some renewed goals.

  • Finish updating my website
  • Start Forex trading
  • Poke around the Instagram API

While fighting a full-on battle with my allergies this weekend I did manage to be somewhat productive my organizing my pictures and videos. I wish I had done more website work but I can still make good progress on that tonight and throughout this week. What I really need to do is finish this book I’m reading on Forex trading and start trading. Since I only have 40 pages left I should get it done. The Instagram API work is research for a project that I’m thinking of doing for the upcoming company hackathon in July.

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Bits

More time to waste

Two weeks ago the manager of my business group at work encouraged me to join in on the fun of playing with him and his friends on the PlayStation Network. Against my better judgement I decided to buy a refurbished PS4 along with MLB The Show 2017 and WWE2k17. It’s the WWE game that he and his friends play since they are huge pro-wrestling fans.

It’s not like I need another distraction from doing what I need to be doing but under the guise of team-building and workplace comaraderie I’ll limit myself to the occasional pleasures of gameplay. That is, until the end of the year when the new God of War and Red Dead Redemption games are released.

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Life

Paying respects

This weekend I traveled with my mother and a group of family friends to Mansfield, Ohio for the funeral of a mutual friend. He lived a full life in his 83 years so I don’t view it as an occasion to mourn. We will all die one day so all that is in our power is the ability to make the greatest use of our time alive.

In the space of 48 hours about 15 hours was spent driving with much of the remaining time spent in a hotel room. Aside from some minimal reading no real productivity was accomplished. I did manage to watch UFC Fight Night: Swanson vs Lobov to break the monotony and I was glad to see Maurice Smith selected for induction into the UFC Hall of Fame.

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Life

Automotivation

Today was an average Friday until I returned from lunch and my manager asked if I wanted to join him at the New York International Auto Show since he had an extra free pass. I hadn’t been to the auto show in over two decades so I happily accepted and we walked the three-by-five blocks southwest to the Javitts Center.

My manager, Kalyan, next to the Alfa Romeo 4C

We only had two hours at our disposal so I spent most of the time looking at cars that were actually in my price range since I will be car shopping soon. Still, it didn’t hurt to look at some exotics. If I needed a daily dose of motivation to worker harder and become rich then I found it by looking at the new Acura NSX. I must own one at some point in my life.

This little distraction kept me from finishing my work task by the end of the day but I’ll take care of it this weekend. Tonight will most likely be a reading night since I will be on an 8-hour bus ride to Ohio.

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