Dean Clough

March 24, 2023

Portico Darwin: Let's Leave the Rope Ladder Down

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS <5 Minute Read Let me virtue signal my way into the weekend by saying that I have a proud history of mentoring, both formally and informally. I enjoy helping others and giving back. And it has the side benefit that I get to hear myself talk - always a plus for me. I have an equally proud history of listening to very s...
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March 22, 2023

Portico Darwin: The Best Value in Men's Clothing?

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 2 Minute Read Truth be told, I kind of enjoy clothes, fashion, and yes, style. You may not notice, but I put a lot of thought and effort into selecting which of the 4 Banana Republic Medium Tall Cotton T-Shirts in Black I own to wear on any given day. So today I share - in a mercifully shorter post for your hump day -...
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March 20, 2023

Portico Darwin: It Wasn't Just Jack Welch

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 4 Minute Read Happy Monday and I am just now wrapping up my latest read, Sally Denton's "The Profiteers". It has the exactly correct subtitle of "Bechtel and the Men Who Built the World." Except "Built the World" - while true in the sense you're probably imagining - also reflects something far more sinister. To this w...
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March 17, 2023

Portico Darwin: An Entire Post About a Playlist

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 3 Minute Read A global pandemic, and then an attempted coup here. The first European ground war since World War II. Now, runs on banks and a looming nuclear war with China over Taiwan? BORING! What's next - supply chain disruptions of Weissβier? Sounds like a great weekend to hang around, and perhaps listen to great m...
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March 15, 2023

Portico Darwin: You Got Lucky Baby

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 2 Minute Read Yes, it's that time of year again! It's our 3 year Covid-19 anniversary tomorrow! Thank God that's over. It is over, right? Let's just say it is and today turn our attention (again) to the issue of wealth inequality in America. But I am going to approach it from a slightly different angle. First, I will ...
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March 13, 2023

Portico Darwin: The One About Shaving, Headphones and Floss

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 3 Minute Read Happy Monday. In putting together the word cloud stuff for the 2nd anniversary post, one thing really stuck out. I've been giving short-shrift to the most important thing there is as an American citizen: gear and its corollary, shopping. Let's attempt to right this wrong on a Monday with a looksie at som...
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March 10, 2023

Portico Darwin: Seamus Colonnity Meets a US Congressman!

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 5 Minute Read Specifically, Representative Wesley Hunt (R) of Texas. And OK, it was me that met him. He was a guest of Dr. Shelly Murphy in her suite at NRG Stadium this past Sunday night at the Rodeo, and is one of 9 congressional representatives from Harris County, in which Houston is located. He is also the only Re...
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March 8, 2023

Portico Darwin: You've Got a Friend

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 2 Minute Read Hello and happy hump day. While I enjoyed Houston and its rodeo, it is very good to be back home in SF. A lot of what I write here is influenced by the podcasts to which I listen, and one of my favorites is Plain Speaking by the thirtysomething genius Derek Thompson. Recently, he had as guests two academ...
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March 6, 2023

Portico Darwin: Depart Houston + Ride 'Em Cowboy

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS < 3 Minute Read Happy Monday and we head home to SF today. Despite the clamoring (in actuality, there was no clamoring) for a Houston Travel Guide, there's simply no point, as my experience is not available to the general public. In fact, today's post is fairly brief, and there's almost as much info on Thailand as Hou...
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March 3, 2023

Portico Darwin: 2 Years Old!

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 3 Minute Read Holy smokes, this blog is 2 years old tomorrow! What started as just a pitiful and narcissistic quest for relevance and attention in retirement has turned into . . . an ongoing pitiful and narcissistic quest for relevance and attention in retirement. 10 Seconds of Seriousness: as I've said here and to so...
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March 1, 2023

Portico Darwin: Don't Go There

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS <2 Minute Read Sure, we're in Houston having a crazy time, but why notthrow some cold water on your vacation planning? I'd like to share the contents of Fodor's No List 2023. This is the travel website and publisher's annual attempt at discouraging visits to fragile and typically, over-loved, travel destinations. We'v...
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February 27, 2023

Portico Darwin: The Rolling Stones, Via Their Comeback Albums

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 2 Minute Read Tomorrow would have been the 81st birthday of Brian Jones, one of the founding members of The Rolling Stones; he died in 1969. (It's also the first day of Rodeo here in Houston, but more on that soon.) When I noticed his birthday coming up, I broke out a beautiful TASCHEN coffee table book we are proud t...
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February 24, 2023

Portico Darwin: Depart SF + I Did Not Produce This

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 3 Minute Read Editor's Note: tomorrow we depart for 8 nights in Houston, where we will be attending the extraordinary Livestock Show & Rodeo as the guests of the future highriser Dr. Shelly Murphy. So to make it easy on myself, essentially every word that follows and all of the images were created by the artificial in...
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February 22, 2023

Portico Darwin: What It's Like Not Being Seen

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS <3 Minute Read As I've worked to understand the dynamics of identity politics, one thing that is obvious is the reasonable desire for people heretofore ignored (or worse) by society to be heard. And (although I hate this Wokistan term) seen. I believe that is a major reason people have taken to deeming themselves quee...
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February 20, 2023

Portico Darwin: Is AI 2023's NFT?

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS < 3 Minute Read Happy Monday. Yes, I remember. It was just about this time last year when my love and appreciation for the art of my cousin Charles Clough collided with the hysteria around blockchain technologies, and specifically, non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Remember this? Then (as now) I believed in Charlie and his ...
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February 17, 2023

Portico Darwin: Planes and Trains

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 1 Minute Read Today, for the weekend, we can laugh about the airline business, and cry about trains, or at least, one route in particular. Here's a mercifully short post, but a troubling one, at least to this transportation nerd. As I occasionally do, I am liberally stealingplagiarizing borrowing from two different so...
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February 15, 2023

Portico Darwin: It's Complicated

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 2 Minute Read As you might have noticed, I've recently been railing on extreme progressivism, or what I call The Psycho Woke. A lot, and as recently as Monday. It's because I am fed up with the mindless silo-ization of America, and the victimhood that comes with it. Add a few dollops of the woefully ineffective left-w...
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February 13, 2023

Portico Darwin: Woke Me When It's Over

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS <2 Minute Read It's Monday, but cheer up: we're going to Wokistan! And even better, we're starting at the candy store! These Boots Are Made For Woking By now, you may have heard of the trials and tribulations of that tramp proud woman, the Green M&M. You see, some found her original incarnation misogynist. Of course t...
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February 10, 2023

Portico Darwin: Grammy Cracker

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS <1 Minute Read (7 hour + listen) I mean, who has the time to wade through the NINETY-ONE categories that made up last Sunday's Grammy Awards? Are you f'ing kidding me? What to do? Well, congratulate yourself for subscribing to this blog. Because I skimmed this list, and then made a playlist of the albums that looked i...
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February 8, 2023

Portico Darwin: Nuke Texas!

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 2 Minute Read Nah, it's not what you think. In fact, I want to nuke Texas so badly, and in such a positive manner, that I almost called in my heavy hitters. But I didn't. Because wanting Texas to be the center of clean energy, and especially the modular nuclear power plant industry, should not be fantasy. Yes, some ba...
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February 6, 2023

Portico Darwin: Construction Zone

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS <4 Minute Read Let's dive right in to Monday with me touching two of the third rails in modern America: gender and race. Heck, I even delve into sexuality for good measure. To illustrate, I'll use a term du jour: construct. But not the verb, the noun: Disclaimer: please top reading this right now if you are easily off...
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February 3, 2023

Portico Darwin: Take Your Top Off

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS > 3 minute read Hi! I'm a Californian again! And it's Friday! Along those lines, here are my favorite convertibles, in no particular order. Most, but not all, are vintage vs. something new. I'm not bothering with years, although I do provide the model of the car. And shocker, there's even a pithy comment here and ther...
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February 1, 2023

Portico Darwin: Mind Blown

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS <2 Minute Read Happy hump day. It is back to SF in a short while after a typically glorious, if cloudy and cold, visit with the literal lifesaver, Dr. Shelly Murphy, here in busy Houston. If you are in America, alive and anything other than off-grid, you've no doubt heard the wave after wave of hype over AI - artifici...
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January 30, 2023

Portico Darwin: Arrive Houston + A Journalist's Call for New News

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 5 Minute Read (attached PDF) I flew into Houston yesterday, courtesy of my favorite cousin, Dr. Shelly Murphy, and am now ensconced in the palatial Murphy Villa. But the Villa will be just a memory soon, which is why I'm here: I'm spec'ing out the tech for her new digs. "New digs," you ask? Nothing major, unless you c...
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January 27, 2023

Portico Darwin: Geezer Happy Hour

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS < 3 Minute Read It's the weekend, and I'm asking my dear departed parents to serve up the drinks. What drinks? I'm talking late 1960s and early 1970s, and following are what my parents and those around them were tossing back. People like this - my parent's friends Art Hansen, Wally Clarke, and Bill Cameron. All fine w...
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January 25, 2023

Portico Darwin: Cooking Up a Crisis

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS < 3 Minute Read First and foremost: Happy Birthday to my very special wife, Julie. If only she took better pictures. On to less wonderful subjects. My typical disclaimer on days like today: no, I am not returning to my news and social media-fueled hair-on-fire and angst-ridden blog style. Nobody wants that. Or mass sh...
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January 23, 2023

Portico Darwin: Texas Is Energetic

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 2 Minute Read Happy Monday. Let's start the week some good news about Texas. And perhaps, America. My favored news source The Economist recently published an article I found rather astounding. It is about the adoption of green clean energy in Texas. I love the graphic they used and the article even more. Here's just o...
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January 22, 2023

Portico Darwin: Downtown Sonoma Travel Guide

OVERVIEW Unfortunately, I must begin this wine region-focused Travel Guide by bragging. Because the fact is, I've been to all parts of Sonoma before. And Napa. And Anderson Valley. Santa Cruz Mountains. Livermore Valley. Santa Barbara and the Santa Rita Hills. The Sierra Foothills. Heck, I've been in a wine region in New Mexico. And fr...
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January 20, 2023

Portico Darwin: This is Psycho Woke

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 2 Minute Read It's been magical pretending we live in Wine Country. We head back home tomorrow after a great week here. Travel Guide? Certainly and soon, but its scope will be limited to Downtown Sonoma, vs. a vineyard touring thing. But believe me: we went wine tasting. I hope you enjoy today's short rant. Many (OK, ...
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January 18, 2023

Portico Darwin: An Apple Can Rot

TODAY'S RAMBLINGS 5 Minute Read Enough heavy talk - JFC I'm in Sonoma! And it's not awful! But for now I will duck out of the many wine salons I am inhabiting this week to talk about America's corporate darling, Apple. I want to remind you Apple people out there - and OMG, there are a whole bunch of you - that Apple, its products, and ...
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