Slope of Hope Blog Posts

This is the heart and soul of the web site. Here we have literally tens of thousands of posts dating back over a decade. These are listed in reverse chronological order. You can also click on any category icon to see posts tagged with that particular category.

Jesus in a Bright Red Cup

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Although¬†Slopers have proved themselves a passionate lot, even when it comes to as pedestrian a topic as Krazy Glue, I’m going to remove my shoes and go tromping through the verboten topic of religion, because it’s been on my mind, thanks to the widely-reported kerfuffle that the management of Starbucks, by way of changing their holiday cups to a simple red design with no holiday imagery, have proved that they hate Jesus.

The chap declaring this ostensible war declares “I think in the age of political correctness we become so open-minded our brains have literally fallen out of our head.” It’s not surprising, I suppose, that such a fellow would commit so many verbal pratfalls in the span of a single sentence, but I’d rather set aside the syntactical foibles and misuse of “literally” and focus on the bigger picture.


Two Ways Of Hedging Disney

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Dying To See Star Wars

One of the trending hashtags on Twitter in recent weeks was #ForceForDaniel, a campaign to get an early screening of the new Star Wars movie for a dying fan, Daniel Fleetwood. Director J.J. Abrams had the film screened for the man at his home, as The Verge noted below.

It wasn’t the first time, incidentally, that Abrams accommodated a dying fan: In 2009, he gave the late Randy Pausch (of Last Lecture fame) a cameo in his Star Trek reboot.

A Boost For Disney¬† (more…)

Apple Loses Its Cool

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The Tao of Steve

In the movie “The Tao of Steve” (2000), the lead character associates the name “Steve” with cool, charismatic men such as the actor Steve McQueen. Apple (AAPL) co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs was famously cool and charismatic, and when he passed away three years ago, investors wondered what impact that would have on the company. As we now know, Apple rocketed to new highs over the next few years. The company had a product pipleline in place, and a wide moat: the convenience of upgrading to a new iPhone, for example, and keeping all of your data and apps, was and still is a powerful inducement to remain an Apple customer. Reactions to Apple’s San Francisco product launch event on Wednesday, however, suggest that Apple may have finally ran out of the residual Steve Jobs cool factor.

Godspeed, Doctor Dyer

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In the midst of all of today’s trading tumult, I happened to see the death notice of Doctor Wayne Dyer. This wasn’t shocking news – – he was 75 years old, and he had health issues on and off over the years – – but I was still saddened to see the news and wanted to do a post about the man.

For those of you unacquainted with Dr. Dyer, he was one of the leading authors of self-help books. I doubt Dr. Dyer would want himself described that way, but that’s how I remember him, and that’s certainly how he initially became famous.

When I was a youngster – about twelve years old – I became afflicted with a mild and lingering depression (that’s not what we called it; I simply recognize it for what it is in hindsight). The book that I found most comforting during that troubled time (which persists, ummm, to this day) wasn’t the Bible, although that helped, but was instead Dyer’s first book, Your Erroneous Zones (as a little kid, I didn’t get the pun, but that’s beside the point).

I read the book over and over again. It addressed the subjects of worry, interpersonal relations, and other items from the long list of neurotic possibilities. In my teenage years, I carefully read Dyer’s new books, such as Pulling Your Own Strings and The Sky’s the Limit. I also listened (repeatedly) to the cassette tapes on which he read his books. I imagine I was one of the few teenagers in the country who was pretty much addicted to the wisdom of Wayne Dyer. As you can see from Amazon, Dr. Dyer went on to write dozens and dozens of books.