Category Archives: Eclectic Observations

Experiment

The Sunday Age has a selection of 15 tips to improve your life, including – bizarrely – advice from an economist (#13). What do these dismal scientists think they know about happiness?

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Crafty Mothers

The Chronicle of Higher Education reports that Duke University is planning to publish the PhD thesis of S. Ann Dunham, the late mother of President Obama. Titled Surviving Against the Odds: Village Industry in Indonesia, it is a study carried … Continue reading

Posted in Eclectic Observations, US Politics

Cools Doer

I had thought suspected this for some time, but I’d never seen firm evidence. In most elevators, at least in any built or installed since the early-nineties, the door-close button doesn’t work. It is there mainly to make you think … Continue reading

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Window Dressing, or the Real Deal?

My father flew with budget carrier Tiger Airways from Canberra to Melbourne yesterday, and had the exciting experience of having part of his window fall out. Fortunately, it was the rim of the inner casing of the window, rather than … Continue reading

Posted in Eclectic Observations

N.O.

Seen in New Orleans: several economists walking down Bourbon Street, still wearing their AEA nametags around their necks as they innocently weave their way between the packs of drunk football fans, the men and women with strings of beads around … Continue reading

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Wise man sends card

It’s coming up to Christmas card time again, and I can’t resist sharing the most apt card I’ve ever received. At the end of 2006, a couple of months after writing this paper with Ian Davidoff, the card below landed in … Continue reading

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We the pretentious

A particular pet peeve of mine is academics who write sole-authored papers as “we”. So I was amused when A Word a Day dropped this into my inbox this afternoon. nosism (NO-siz-em) noun The use of ‘we’ in referring to … Continue reading

Posted in Eclectic Observations | 17 Comments