Slope of Hope Blog Posts

Slope initially began as a blog, so this is where most of the website’s content resides. Here we have tens of thousands of posts dating back over a decade. These are listed in reverse chronological order. Click on any category icon below to see posts tagged with that particular subject, or click on a word in the category cloud on the right side of the screen for more specific choices.

Gratitude instead of Attitude

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The images and sounds from Kabul that I witnessed on Sunday’s broadcasts were so troubling to me that I woke up at 2:30 a.m. Monday morning and did not go back to sleep. In the span of a weekend, Afghanistan has been turned into a hell on Earth, So it’s a human rights catastrophe, a political catastrophe, and a financial catastrophe, as the foolish United States has destroyed over a trillion dollars in this agonizing absurdity…………to say nothing of the 167,000 people who died during the course of this utter farce.

As much as I gripe about the many imperfections of the United States, I am still grateful that I just happened to be born here. Think for a moment: right now, there is a baby girl being born in Kabul. She is simply a new human being on the planet. She does not know she is basically being born, for her, in the worst place on Earth. So much of our lives – – 99%, perhaps? – – is determined by the randomness of where we are born and who our parents are.

So, as I sit here this evening, I offer these thanks to the heavens above for my own good fortune:


Good Boy

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I’ve made no secret of my fondness for dogs. I grew up with them, and ever since I moved away from my parents as a young person, I’ve had at least one dog (and, more commonly, three) in my life. I’ve written about my experiences with dogs here from time to time on Slope, and the picture on the right is me on Saturday getting to hold a three month old Bernese a friend recently brought into his own family.

This is not a story about the purebred cutie-pie shown here, however. The dog I have in mind was one I saw much earlier in the day, just around sunrise, when I was traipsing around the parking lot of the East Palo Alto Home Depot (AKA not the most elegant place on the planet). I was charging my car up and taking my two larger dogs on their customary morning walk, which at this particular location means examining every single box and bag the find on the ground just in case there are any crusts or tidbits leftover. (There have been occasions when entire pizzas have been found, which to them is like Christmas Day).

As we were walking, I noticed a large dog curled up next to a beat-up old van. I have very good peripheral vision, and an eye for trouble, which always served me well when our kids were very young, so I instantly noticed the dog from a distance. I also noticed he had a tennis ball tucked right next to him, and it was immediately obvious that this tennis ball was the dog’s most treasured asset.


Being Clever with Labels

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One of my favorite features in SlopeCharts is the labeling feature, and I had a challenge yesterday that I quickly solved and wanted to share with you.

The challenge was this: I wanted to buy some alt-coins at the Kraken exchange, but I knew Kraken had added some new coins since the last time I checked, and I wanted to make sure I had a complete, up-to-date label reference in SlopeCharts to identify which coins were available. Now, the monkey-brain was to do this would be to go through all my crypto charts, one by one, and label those that were on the Kraken list, but I’d rather work smart than work hard, so here’s what I did.

Step 1: Get the Raw List

I just googled the term “Kraken coin list” and got to the page where it showed the up-to-date listing of coins covered.