Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Meditation and Dharma talk led by Venerable Ayya Tataloka-Guest Teacher at the Alameda Sangha

Name of event: : Ayya Tataloka
Date: May 25, 2014
Location: United Methodist Church, 2311 Buena Vista, Alameda, CA 
Details: 7-9pm. Meditation and dharma talk led by Venerable Ayya Tataloka.
Cost: Donation
  • More information about Ayya Tataloka and the path of a bhikkhuni here.

Monday, March 24, 2014

C’era Una Volta’s 10th Anniversary!

C’era Una Volta’s 10th Anniversary!
Celebrate Our Anniversary With Us
Two Days!
Saturday April 5 and Sunday, April 6, 2014
Saturday-noon-4pm
Party with Chef Rudy and Cheryl
Wine Flights-Music-Free Buffet
Sunday Flamenco Performance
Dinner Seating 5pm ~ Flamenco Show 6:15pm featuring Virginia Iglesias & Company
All seats: Anniversary DISCOUNT … $40!
RSVP
Performance only $25.00 (mezzanaine seating)
Seating priority: First come, first served!

Entertainment-
   Una Noche Flamenca
    Enjoy exquisite cuisine in an intimate setting, and experience the artistry of the Bay Area’s finest flamencos Virginia Iglesias and Company!
   Claudio Medeiros will be singing and playing accordian and keyboards.The tunes will be mostly Italian and contemporary standards and Brazilian 

C’era Una Volta / Ristorante Italiano
Reservations: 510-769-4828 / www.ceraunavolta.us
1332 Park Street
Alameda, California 94501
510.769.4828
http://www.ceraunavolta.us/v2/index.php

C'era Una Volta Statement:
DE GUSTIBUS NON DISPUTANDUM EST
"There is no disputing good taste."

A Philosophy of Taste
While growing up just after World War II in Livorno, Italy, we had few luxuries. Though our town had been destroyed, we were determined to laugh, love and live well with what little we had. I learned to take pleasure in the sensation of being alive, and my appreciation for taste rose above all else.

Food is more than just fuel that feeds our bodies – it is the universal and indispensible means of conveying our traditions and shared community. Food with tradition and with “soul” is the central expression of special occasions in cultures around the world.

The culinary arts celebrate our sense of taste, creating the meals that not only nourish our bodies, but also create experiences that become a true part of us by remaining in our memories.

Taste, in this sense, is a reflection of our culture, our society, our humanity. Taste is what anchors us to the traditions of our past, and becomes the path to preserving our future culture.

In my philosophy, food maintains our bodies – taste sustains life.

I dedicate my work to my mamma, Floriana, whom I appreciate for teaching me simplicity. Dedication is also due to Luciano Grapsa and Renato Porciatti who gave me lessons in life and passion for the culinary arts.

Chef Rutilio “Rudy” Fanetti-Durán

 __________________________________________
Awards
       Alameda Sun, Third Annual Fearless Fork Awards
       Best of Alameda 2006, Alameda Magazine Reader’s Choice Awards Winner: Best Wine List
       Best of Alameda 2007, Alameda Magazine Reader’s Choice Awards Winner: Best Wine List,   
       Chamber of Commerce Best Culinary Business in 2007

 Certifications
        Greenopia - Certified Green business
        Slowfood
        Accademia de la Cucina Italiana

Memberships
        FPFS - The San Francisco Professional Food Society
        IISA - Italian International Student Association
        BAIA - Business Association of Italian Americans
        Alameda Chamber of Commerce
        PSBA - Park Street Business Association
        GABA - Greater Alameda Business Association
 

Tony Lindsay Band plus SF Panhandlers Steel Drum Band

Tony Lindsay Band plus SF Panhandlers Steel Drum Band
Also Tom Politzer from Tower of Power
Saturday April 12, 2014
Door 7pm / Show 8pm


Club Fox
2209 Broadway Street, Redwood City, CA
650-369-7770
http://www.clubfoxrwc.com

Tickets: $15 Adv./$20 Door
at: http://latinrockinc.net/home/event/tony-lindsay-band
or by calling 415-285-7719

http://latinrockinc.net/home/event/tony-lindsay-band/
http://www.tonylindsay.com/

 


Tony Lindsay

Eleven time Grammy® Award winner, singer, songwriter, and producer Tony Lindsey has released his long-awaited third album that is currently self-titled. Tony Lindsay is internationally known as the lead singer for guitar legend Carlos Santana and he can be heard on such albums as Milagro, Shaman, Ceremony, Food for Thought, and Supernatural, where Tony received eleven Grammys.

Tony also performs with his own band Spangalang, a Bay Area staple in Northern California. Spangalang has opened for the likes of Curtis Mayfield, Tower of Power, Gerald Albright, Junior Walker, and the Average White Band. Tony has also lent his dynamic voice on several radio and television commercials with Mazda, Chevy, Hotwheels, Clorox, Long John Silver’s, Joseph Aspirin, Albertson’s, Dryer’s Ice Cream, and Wendy’s to name a few. On the children’s television show “Kanga Roddy” he is the voice of “Tackle Bear.”

The third Tony Lindsay album can be found in stores at Rasputin, Virgin Records, CD Baby, iTunesAmazon.com and at his own website tonylindsey.com.

~www.tonylindsay.com

Alameda Sangha Daylong Retreat-C o n c e n t r a t i o n

C o n c e n t r a t i o n
Join Rebecca Dixon and Deb Kerr to strengthen your concentration and explore the peace it brings. The day will be in silence, with periods of instruction and sitting and walking meditation.

This retreat is suitable for people at all levels of experience.

When: 
March 29, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm

Where: 
United Methodist Church, 2311 Buena Vista Ave, Alameda, CA.

The church has comfortable chairs. Bring sitting supplies you wish to use.  Please come 15 minutes early to settle in. And please bring a bag lunch.
This event is given on a donation basis to to provide an opportunity to practice generosity and to make teachings available to all.

Shifting Sands~Pauletta Chanco ART SHOW opens in July.

Pauletta Chanco ART SHOW opens  in July. It is entitled Shifting Sands
and is from July 19- Aug 21, 2014 at SFMOMA Artists' Gallery in Fort Mason, San Francisco, California.
The reception will be on Saturday, July 19 from 3-5 pm.Upstairs gallery.

http://www.sfmoma.org/visit/artists_gallery


Fort Mason Center
2 Marina Boulevard, Building A
San Francisco, CA 94123
Hours:Tuesday - Saturday 10:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Closed Sunday - Monday
Artists Gallery Contact: 415.441.4777 artistsgallery@sfmoma.or


Here’s a link to a photo in Dropbox:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/7elu7xnisx7y213/Breathing%20into%20Sadness.jpg
You can use the image above in the link for publicizing the show.


Shifting Sands

Living with a terminal diagnosis has taught me that I can never
make plans with any certitude. Chemo treatments interrupt and
interfere with life and when these stop, death will come, seeking
me out with his firm agenda in hand.

All I can do is live in the moment, appreciating each one as it arises.
I choose to spend moments creating beauty and breathing life into what
was never there before. The poignancy of these creative moments is the
most amazing gift of all.

http://www.paulettachanco.com/

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Amitabha's Pureland

Amitabha's Pureland

intuitivemd1 originally shared this
04 Feb 2014 Other
I am using this as a placemaker to show that I said prayers for this person to ensure that she/he ascended to Christ in Amitabha's Pureland. I use this to that indicate that I have done the Whole-Body Relic Treasure Chest Seal Dharani prayer at least 9 times for this person to ensure that they ascend to a Heaven-Pureland with Christ. This prayer is also known by the name Casket Seal Dharani and can be listened to on You Tube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eP5marD4_ew. It is from a Sutra by the Buddha which you can read at http://www.sutrasmantras.info/sutra03.html. The prayer gives the person the merit to go to Amitabha's Pureland. I asked Christ to send a bi-location of himself to that Pureland so that Christians who want to go there will have him to greet them there. From there a person can go to the regular Christian Heaven anytime they want.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Cabin From 1830

A Retired Mathematician Found A Rotting Cabin From 1830. What He Did With It Is Perfection.

December 2, 2013 Other Stuff
Reddit user srirachaforeverthing just posted what happens when you mix a retired mathematician father and an old, rotting 1830s cabin.
He decided to restore it. And the result? Cozy perfection.
Source: Reddit
All of the wood that makes up this cabin that was not from the original came from the family’s land. This is about as authentic as it comes for an 1830′s cabin. This retired mathematician did an incredible job over the past 10 years.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Art writers — Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? VisualArtSources.com Editors' Roundtable by DeWitt Cheng

Art writers — Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?
 VisualArtSources.com
Editors' Roundtable
by DeWitt Cheng

In previous editorials in this space, I addressed four of the fourteen questions that art critic Irving Sandler posed to fellow art critics in The Brooklyn Rail in 2012. Number Five asked who and what are critics are. This might seem simplistic – critics are art experts who shape taste, no? – but the complexity of the art world nowadays makes the inquiry newly relevant.

The role of the critic has come under fire in recent years. A century ago, T.S. Eliot saw the goals of criticism as the "elucidation of works of art and the correction of taste." At roughly the same time, Anatole France wrote, "The good critic is he who relates the adventures of his soul among masterpieces." Sadly, both statements sound elitist to us postmoderns, who interpret such aesthetic discrimination as antidemocratic, serving power elites. We have allowed politics to determine (or even predetermine) our responses, co-opting aesthetic concerns. If masterpieces are rare in actuality, and near-masterpieces more common, the ideological judging of objects of art levels everything to the lowest common denominator of "pretty good," and "interesting!" Or, to cite that exasperating bromide penciled in the margins of library books, "How true!" It's illogic, masquerading as enlightened sanctity.

Art critics are generally, but not always, university-trained artists or art historians. The best of them care deeply about the creative life as an alternative to mainstream corporate culture. If this terminology is redolent of the 1960s, when I was in college, before business became glamorous, and just as art (post-Warhol) was itself becoming business, I hold that the adversarial, critical role of art remains important and even crucial. The most engaging and rewarding art critics are neither theorists or propagandists on the one hand, nor journalistic purveyors of weekend entertainment on the other. The digital drift of the culture away from long-form art criticism echoes the diffusion in art's energies from serious creative expression into entertainment and investment. This criticism of the art market is one being heard from more and more artsters lately, now that the bloom of stylistic novelty for its own sake is off the rose.

So who and what are these self-appointed art experts? Above all, we're art fans and aficionados who have found in art a lifelong passion that only gets deeper and more interesting over time. Because we curious characters tend to read a lot, and retain some of it, we're knowledgeable, and see contemporary art in a longer, wider perspective than most, and thus, more critically. The old trope that critics are bitter, failed artists has no truth as far as I know, and artistes manqués usually quit the art world anyway. The similarly silly notion that art does not require explication – well, really, darlings! We critics like looking and seeing (not the same thing, exactly), and discovering what we think through writing. We believe in serving the art and artists and art audience, but also enjoy enjoying ourselves. H.L. Mencken defended the right of the critic to make an art form of criticism (in his case, literary): to crow the song of oneself a bit, to paraphrase from memory. We are happy to help deserving artists get their moment in the spotlight, to launch or sustain careers, but we are not slaves of the galleries, museums or collectors; sometimes we may oppose those interests, but usually we are happy to consider them, whatever their foibles, if they forgive ours, in turn, as colleagues in the grand adventure of art. If we can occasionally point them toward masterpieces or correct their taste, so much the better; it's all good.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Fumio Yoshimura

Fumio Yoshimura, 76, Sculptor of Everyday

Fumio Yoshimura, a sculptor known for his highly detailed wooden replicas of plants, machines and a variety of everyday objects, died on July 23 in Manhattan, where he lived. He was 76.The cause was complications from pancreatic cancer, his wife, Carol, said.

Mr. Yoshimura, who was born in Japan and came to New York in his mid-30's, worked in white, unfinished linden wood that gave his nearly exact renderings of tomato plants, typewriters, bicycles, kites and sewing machines a ghostly pallor. Though he never depicted people in his work, human activities are often implied in objects like an apple peeler that contains a half-skinned piece of fruit.

Mr. Yoshimura studied painting at the Tokyo University of Arts, but while in New York he taught himself wood sculpture, using a variety of knives, chisels and drills. He was known for his painstaking technique; his most elaborate works, like a full-size hot dog cart, often took months to complete.
Mr. Yoshimura's work is in the collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, Fla., and the Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College, where he taught as an adjunct professor for 11 years.

Mr. Yoshimura's first wife, Yoshiko, died. His marriage to the writer Kate Millett (who dedicated her book ''Sexual Politics'' to him) ended in divorce.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by a sister, Sadako Iwaya, and a brother, Rikio Yoshimura, both of Tokyo; and a stepson, Obadiah Watkinson, of Brooklyn.

Friday, March 14, 2014

C o n c e n t r a t i o n- A Meditation Retreat Alameda Sangha March 29

C o n c e n t r a t i o n A Meditation Retreat

Join Rebecca Dixon and Deb Kerr to strengthen your concentration and explore the peace it brings. The day will be in silence, with periods of instruction and sitting and walking meditation. 

This retreat is suitable for people at all levels of experience.

When: March 29, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm
Where: United Methodist Church, 
2311 Buena Vista Ave, Alameda, CA. 94501

The church has comfortable chairs. Bring sitting supplies you wish to use.  Please come 15 minutes early to settle in. And please bring a bag lunch. 

Drop-ins are welcome. 

This event is given on a donation basis to to provide an opportunity to practice generosity and to make teachings available to all. 

Alameda Sangha
Every Sunday, 7pm-9pm
Buena Vista United Methodist Church
2311 Buena Vista Ave.,
Alameda, CA 94501
Visit our Website: https://sites.google.com/site/alamedasangha/

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Organist Crista Miller To Perform at Cathedral of Christ the Light Oakland

Organist Crista Miller To Perform at Cathedral of Christ the Light Oakland

Sunday Apr 06, 2014
from 05:00 PM to 06:30 PM
The Cathedral of Christ the Light
2121 Harrison Street,
Oakland, CA 94612
http://www.ctlcathedral.org/
Admission is free of charge, with a  free-will offering.
(510) 832-5057

Organist Christa Miller will perform in concert at the Cathedral of Christ the Light, showcasing the variety of tonal colors of the cathedral’s Conroy Memorial Organ.   Ms. Miller is Director of
Music for the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Houston, Texas, and one of few female organists to head cathedral music programs.   She will perform works by Bach, Pachelbel, César Franck as well as works of the Lebanese composer Naji Hakim, and Houston-based composer Daniel Knaggs.    
Admission is free of charge, with a  free-will offering.

Crista Miller is the Director of Music and Cathedral Organist at Houston’s Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart where she chaired the Organ Committee for Martin Pasi’s Opus 19 pipe organ.  She oversees the Celebrity Organ Series and the First Friday University of Houston Series and leads a growing Cathedral music organization, with the Schola Cantorum in high demand for large-Crista Miller Photoscale, festive liturgies.

Dr. Miller is in additional demand as an accompanist, appearing with CANTARE Houston,Houston Masterworks Chorus, the Bay Area Chorus, St. Cecilia Chamber Choir, and Houston
Children’s Chorus. Formerly choir director/organist at the Chapel of St. Basil at the University of St. Thomas, her service playing as at Third Presbyterian As a solo performer, Dr. Miller has performed in France, Spain, Italy, the Czech Republic,Denmark, Sweden, and Canada, including featured performances at the Svendbørg
International Organ Festival; the Festival de Órgano de Asturias Cajastur, and two conventions of the American Guild of Organists.

Dr. Miller has been a featured presenter for the Eastman School of Music, the American Guild of Organists Region VII Convention (Albuquerque), the Church Music Association of America (Miami and Pittsburgh), and the University of North Texas’s inaugural Wolff Organ Conference (Denton).  Research on cultural influences in the organ works of Naji Hakim has found Dr. Miller working with the composer in southern France and Paris.  Publication of her work on the Middle Eastern elements in the music of Naji Hakim, and the connection to Charles Tournemire is forthcoming this year in the Church Music Association of America’s volume on Charles Tournemire and his liturgica.

Crista Miller earned the Doctorate of Musical Arts (DMA) in organ performance and literature and the Sacred Music Diploma at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, studying under Hans Davidsson.  There she received the graduate award for
 the Eastman Rochester Organ Initiative (EROI), a global organ-building project that will ultimately deliver about twenty new organs to the Rochester area.  In addition, she earned the Master of Music degree from the University of Houston’s Moores School
of Music, studying with Robert Bates, Robert Brewer, and Robert Jones.  Previously, she earned the Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering at Oklahoma State University,where she studied organ with Gerald Frank.


The Cathedral of Christ the Light
2121 Harrison Street,
Oakland, CA 94612
http://www.ctlcathedral.org/
 The Cathedral of Christ the Light is located at 2121 Harrison Street, Oakland, between 21st Street and Grand Avenue, across from Lake Merritt. Parking is available at reasonable rates in the Cathedral underground lot. Enter the lot on the 21st street side of the Cathedral Center. Parking information and printable map

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Gold coins and ingots

The mysterious haul of gold coins discovered by a Northern California couple while out walking their dog – and valued at $10 million – may well be a previously undiscovered bounty that an employee of the San Francisco Mint was convicted of stealing in 1901.
The couple, who haven’t been named, stumbled across the haul of 1,427 rare, mint-condition gold coins, nearly all dating from 1847 to 1894, buried in the shadow of an old tree on their Gold Country property in February 2013.
The face value of the Saddle Ridge Hoard, as they’ve called it, added up to about $27,000, but some of the coins are so rare that experts say they could fetch nearly $1million apiece.
Scroll down for video
Treasure hunting enthusiasts believe the $10m fortune found by a couple in northern California could be the same gold coins that Walter N. Dimmick was accused of embezzling from the San Francisco U.S. Mint in the early 1900's
Treasure hunting enthusiasts believe the $10m fortune found by a couple in northern California could be the same gold coins that Walter N. Dimmick was accused of embezzling from the San Francisco U.S. Mint in the early 1900's

The couple went public with their amazing discovery on Tuesday, and treasure enthusiasts have been quick to suggest that the coins could be the same ones stolen by Walter Dimmick, an employee of the San Francisco Mint in the late 1800′s, reports Altered Dimensions
Dimmick began working at the mint in 1898 and by 1901 was trusted with the keys to the vaults – until an audit revealed a $30,000 shortage in $20 Double Eagle coins, six bags in all. 
 
He quickly became the prime suspect as he was the last person to see the missing gold coins and had already been caught practicing how to forge the Superintendent’s name.
After a month-long trial, Dimmick was convicted of stealing the coins and sentenced to nine years at the San Quentin prison in California.
Booty: A trove of rare Gold Rush-era coins unearthed in California last year by a couple as they walked their dog may be the greatest buried treasure ever found in the United States, worth more than $10million
Booty: A trove of rare Gold Rush-era coins unearthed in California last year by a couple as they walked their dog may be the greatest buried treasure ever found in the United States, worth more than $10million

The coins that Dimmick stole were never found, leaving some to now wonder if the Saddle Ridge Hoard is the very same set of lost coins. 
There is certainly compelling evidence to link the two bounties. According to 1901 reports, 1,500 coins were stolen by Dimmick - only 73 coins less than the 1,427 discovered at Saddle Ridge.
The dates on the coins fit the time frame and the type and denomination of the coins match too.
The couple who found the coins, known only as Mary and John, maintain that they and their attorneys researched who might have hidden the coins and have come up with nothing.
'The nearest we can guess is that whoever left the coins might have been involved in the mining industry,’ said veteran numismatist Don Kagin, who is representing them.

One of the 1800s-era U.S. gold coins unearthed in California by two people who want to remain anonymous. The value of the "Saddle Ridge Hoard" treasure trove is estimated at $10 million or more
One of the 1800s-era U.S. gold coins unearthed in California by two people who want to remain anonymous. The value of the "Saddle Ridge Hoard" treasure trove is estimated at $10 million or more
According to U.S. treasure laws, the anonymous couple could have it taken away from them.
Gold Country locals and experts believe that one of the main reasons they’ve not disclosed their names is because they’re scared that their find will be taken away from them.
According to U.S. Treasure Trove Laws, the whole collection could be taken away and given to descendants of the person who originally put it in the ground or even given to the state.
The law on finding treasure that is on your property but belongs to someone else is vague.
The treasure trove rule was first given serious consideration by the Oregon Supreme Court in 1904 in a case involving boys who had discovered thousands of dollars in gold coins hidden in metal cans while cleaning out a hen-house and they were allowed to keep their stash.
In subsequent years the legal position became unclear as a series of English and American cases decided that landowners were entitled to buried valuables.
Dimmick began working at the San Francisco mint in 1898 and by 1901 was trusted with the keys to the vaults ¿ until an audit revealed a $30,000 shortage in $20 Double Eagle coins, six bags in all
Dimmick began working at the San Francisco mint in 1898 and by 1901 was trusted with the keys to the vaults ¿ until an audit revealed a $30,000 shortage in $20 Double Eagle coins, six bags in all

Since that time, however, some legal experts have said that it’s a 'misguided and misunderstood' law and both finder and owner have a case for owning the goods. As the owner is dead, the descendants would have a case.
The couple have been advised by attorneys and coin experts from the Gold Country are representing them. They have made a deal with Amazon on their behalf, who are selling the coins online.
Frank Willis owns Pioneering Mining Supplies, in Auburn, and has dealt with treasure hunters in the area for many years. He says that the couple are in danger of having their haul taken away if they make their identity public.
‘Why do you think they’re remaining anonymous? It’s the treasure trove laws. They can’t say a thing, as if family members come forward, and say it’s grandpa’s money or whatever, then they may have to handover the cash, or even worse, the state will make a claim for it.’

'I don't like to say once-in-a-lifetime for anything, but you don't get an opportunity to handle this kind of material, a treasure like this, ever,' said veteran numismatist Don Kagin, who is representing the finders. 'It's like they found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.'
David Hall, co-founder of Professional Coin Grading Service, poses with some of 1,427 Gold-Rush era U.S. gold coins, at his office in Santa Ana, Calif., Tuesday
A 19th century gold coin is shown in this undated handout photo courtesy of Kagin's, Inc.
Show and tell: David Hall (left), co-founder of Professional Coin Grading Service, poses with some of 1,427 Gold-Rush era U.S. gold coins, at his office in Santa Ana


Kagin, whose family has been in the rare-coin business for 81 years, would say little about the couple other than that they are husband and wife, are middle-aged and have lived for several years on the rural property where the coins were found. He first met the couple last April.
They have no idea who put the the coins there, he said.
The pair are choosing to remain anonymous, Kagin said, in part to avoid a renewed gold rush to their property by modern-day prospectors armed with metal detectors.
However, Kagin's company posted a brief question and answer interview with the couple - identified only as John and Mary - on a website set up to market the coins. 
Mary revealed that the discovery of the coins was foretold by her astrological chart - through she didn't realize it at the time.
'I did look back at it. It’s very funny, my chart did talk about treasure, but it was more about the treasure of spirit….' she said.
She added: 'I never would have thought we would have found something like this; however, in a weird way I feel like I have been preparing my whole life for it.
Precious exhibits: Some of 1,427 Gold-Rush era U.S. gold coins are displayed at Professional Coin Grading Service in Santa Ana, Calif.
Precious exhibits: Some of 1,427 Gold-Rush era U.S. gold coins are displayed at Professional Coin Grading Service in Santa Ana, Calif.

Most of the coins were minted in San Francisco, but one $5 gold piece came from as far away as Georgia
Most of the coins were minted in San Francisco, but one $5 gold piece came from as far away as Georgia

California Gold Country: Near the center of the map is Sutter's Mill, the site of the 1848 find that started the Gold Rush. Hopeful prospectors flocked to the area east of Sacramento to the Nevada line and down through much of the Sierra Nevada range
California Gold Country: Near the center of the map is Sutter's Mill, the site of the 1848 find that started the Gold Rush. Hopeful prospectors flocked to the area east of Sacramento to the Nevada line and down through much of the Sierra Nevada range
'John just knew what to do - it was a little bit karmic… Perhaps in some way we were the ones that could honor the coins.'
John and Mary are a self-employed couple in their 40s.
'The family and the attorneys researched who might have put them there, and they came up with nothing,' Kagin said.
'The nearest we can guess is that whoever left the coins might have been involved in the mining industry.'
They also don't want to be treated any differently, said David McCarthy, chief numismatist for Kagin Inc. of Tiburon.
'Their concern was this would change the way everyone else would look at them, and they're pretty happy with the lifestyle they have today,' he said.
They plan to put most of the coins up for sale through Amazon while holding onto a few keepsakes. They'll use the money to pay off bills and quietly donate to local charities, Kagin said.
Before they sell them, they are loaning some to the American Numismatic Association for its National Money Show, which opens on Thursday in Atlanta.
This image shows one of the six decaying metal canisters filled with 1800s-era U.S. gold coins unearthed under the shade of a tree
This image shows one of the six decaying metal canisters filled with 1800s-era U.S. gold coins unearthed under the shade of a tree
Lucky find: A can containing 19th century gold coins is shown in the ground
Lucky find: A can containing 19th century gold coins is shown in the ground

GOLD IN THEM THAR HILLS: 'SADDLE RIDGE GOLD HOARD' REVEALS A WEALTH OF CALIFORNIA HISTORY

CALIFORNIA GOLD RUSH 1848 - 1864
Sutter's Mill in Coloma, California - Site of the find that started the California Gold Rush
Sutter's Mill in Coloma, California - Site of the find that started the California Gold Rush

While the lucky California couple who discovered the $10million in gold coins won't reveal themselves, the shocking find illustrates the vivid, gold-lined history of the region.
The region where the ranch is located is known as California Gold Country.
It was in the region in 1848 that the California gold rush began when the precious metal was discovered at Sutter's Mill in Coloma near Sacramento.
Though it was just a few tiny nuggets, the find kicked off one of human history's largest migrations as gold hungry prospectors descended on the area from around the world.
Fast forward to today and the region's once booming population has shrunk considerably along with the ebb of the Gold Rush.
THE SADDLE RIDGE HOARD
Thought the Gold Rush ended some 150 years ago, the California couple stumbled upon a rich hoard.
The coins date from 1847 to 1894.
Those dates are one of the things that makes the coins so rare.
Because paper money was illegal in California until the 1870s, most coins minted before then are extremely worn.
However, coins in the Saddle Ridge Hoard--so named because that's what the couple named the area of their ranch where the treasure was found--are mostly in uncirculated mint condition.
What makes their find particularly valuable, McCarthy said, is that almost all of the coins are in near-perfect condition. That means that whoever put them into the ground likely socked them away as soon as they were put into circulation.
Because paper money was illegal in California until the 1870s, he added, it's extremely rare to find any coins from before that of such high quality.
'It wasn't really until the 1880s that you start seeing coins struck in California that were kept in real high grades of preservation,' he said.
The coins, in $5, $10 and $20 denominations, were stored more or less in chronological order, McCarthy said, with the 1840s and 1850s pieces going into one canister until it was filed, then new coins going into the next one and the next one after that.
The dates and the method indicated that whoever put them there was using the ground as their personal bank and that they weren't swooped up all at once in a robbery.
Although most of the coins were minted in San Francisco, one $5 gold piece came from as far away as Georgia.

The coins were store chronologically, with the 1840s and 1850s pieces going into one canister until it was filed, then new coins going into the next one and the next one after that. The dates and the method indicated that whoever put them there was using the ground as their personal bank
The coins were store chronologically, with the 1840s and 1850s pieces going into one canister until it was filed, then new coins going into the next one and the next one after that. The dates and the method indicated that whoever put them there was using the ground as their personal bank

'THE GREATEST BURIED TREASURES EVER UNEARTHED IN THE U.S.'

Experts are lauding the Gold Country find as one of the most spectacular ever found in America and put its value at $10million or more. Some of the rarer coins could fetch $1million a piece.
Here are some of the other frontrunners for greatest American treasures:
Tennessee construction workers unearthed $1million in gold coins in 1985.
400,000 silver coins were found in a dead Reno, Nevada man's home in 1974 and fetched $7.3million.
Coins and ingots worth $130million were found in the 1980s in a ship that sunk off North Carolina, but that hefty hoard wasn't truly discovered...historians knew all along it was out there
Kagin and McCarthy would say little about the couple's property or its ownership history, other than it's in a sprawling hilly area of Gold Country and the coins were found along a path the couple had walked for years.
On the day they found them last spring, the woman had bent over to examine an old rusty can that erosion had caused to pop slightly out of the ground.
They found eight cans in total.
'Don't be above bending over to check on a rusty can,' he said she told him.
They are located on a section of the property the couple nicknamed Saddle Ridge, and Kagin is calling the find the Saddle Ridge Hoard. He believes it could be the largest such discovery in U.S. history.
One of the largest previous finds of gold coins was $1million worth uncovered by construction workers in Jackson, Tennessee, in 1985. More than 400,000 silver dollars were found in the home of a Reno, Nevada, man who died in 1974 and were later sold intact for $7.3million.
Gold coins and ingots said to be worth as much as $130million were recovered in the 1980s from the wreck of the SS Central America. But historians knew roughly where that gold was because the ship went down off the coast of North Carolina during a hurricane in 1857.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2568952/Could-newly-discovered-gold-coins-haul-stolen-disgraced-San-Francisco-Mint-employee-1901-Treasure-hunting-enthusiasts-weigh-origins-couples-10-million-find.html#ixzz2v1CAalmF
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Saturday, March 1, 2014

Online Learning is A Croc

What if, as a novice teacher or professor, you began a course and the entire class decided to leave—either from apathy or boredom or the popular student conviction that whatever is not a part of the lesson is inherently more interesting than what is? That old educator’s nightmare is now a digital reality: massive open online courses, or MOOCs, born a few years ago of the seemingly well-paired utopianisms of Silicon Valley and the élite American university, are seeing that classroom management can be a difficult task without a classroom.
When the Times declared 2012 the “Year of the MOOC,” it seemed, in the words of the paper, that “everyone wants in,” with schools, students, and investors eager to participate. But, as can happen in academia, early ambition faded when the first few assessments were returned, and, since then the open-online model appears to have earned an incomplete, at best. An average of only four per cent of registered users finished their MOOCs in a recent University of Pennsylvania study, and half of those enrolled did not view even a single lecture. EdX, a MOOC collaboration between Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has shown results that are a little more encouraging, but not much. And a celebrated partnership between San Jose State and Udacity, the company co-founded by Sebastian Thrun, a Stanford professor turned MOOC magnate , also failed, when students in the online pilot courses consistently fared worse than their counterparts in the equivalent courses on campus.
Some of the problems encountered by MOOCs echo those of an earlier model of alternative learning. Last month, the General Educational Development exam, or G.E.D., was replaced by a more challenging computer version. Like MOOCs, the G.E.D, which has been around since 1942, is partially an attempt to save time and money in education, and to extend opportunity to students outside the traditional classroom. As a marker of high-school equivalence, it holds the promise that an entire academic career can be distilled into the knowledge required to pass a five-part exam.
But according to a September, 2013, American RadioWorks report, of the forty per cent of G.E.D.-holders who go on to college, fewer than half complete more than a year, and only about four per cent earn a four-year degree. The additional rigor of the redesigned exam might not be the solution. The military tried a similar approach when, in the nineteen-seventies, it raised the G.E.D. scores required for entry. Even then, G.E.D. applicants quit or were thrown out of the service at a higher rate than enlistees with high-school degrees.
Here we stumble up against a familiar MOOC-themed mystery. Motivated students complete their G.E.D. as a waypoint for college, and, like those who signed up for the online courses, around ninety-five per cent of them don’t succeed. But what happens in between?
Somewhere short of the finish line, something that the G.E.D. cannot measure, and that the MOOCs aren’t equipped to address, is siphoning these students off. It may have to do with the noncognitive aspects of education. In 2010, three University of Chicago economists found that, while the G.E.D. does approximate a high-school degree as a measurement of scholastic aptitude, it reveals nothing about the non-academic skills—traits like persistence, motivation, and reliability—that are developed over the course of a high-school career, and that are necessary for success in work or at college.
The G.E.D. is not the same sort of learning experience as a MOOC, but there are points of contact between the two. They both attempt to trade most, if not all, of the traditional classroom experience, where a student’s noncognitive skills are tried and tempered, for access and convenience. And that can seem like a good deal. On a physical campus, courses are often a negotiation between motivation and curriculum, in which the success of a class depends as much on how much sleep students get, who’s sitting next to whom, or personal opinions of the instructor as on the lesson plan and lecture notes. When a student’s attention drifts in a classroom, it can be regained. A skilled teacher can bounce the curriculum back into the messy real world of education, focussing and flipping distractions into the lesson in a sort of pedagogical jujitsu.
Traditional classroom educators long ago realized that when you crowd ten or twenty or a hundred students close together, learning, by default, becomes a social experience. Rather than constantly fighting the disorder of the system, some classes learned to harness it, adapting their practices and assumptions accordingly. Around the seminar table, where students work face to face and elbow to elbow, the harmonies and dissonances between individuals can be played out in an academic discussion. The class can draw upon differences in perspective and persuasion to build a conversation, solve a problem, or interpret an experiment.
Online classes also have this potential, expanded many times over by the Earth-shrinking capacities of the medium. But, in an online discussion or in an offline MOOC meet-up, it’s easier for a person to disengage or not show up, to “agree to disagree”—that polite fig leaf of social shorthand—and fall out of the experience. The same point of disagreement that sparks a classroom discussion for an hour has the potential to scatter Internet participants to the four corners of the Web in minutes.
If, like the G.E.D., MOOCs are missing a vital social element, that doesn’t mean they’re without value. The data tells us that very few of the students who enroll in a MOOC will ever reach its end. In the ivy, brick, and mortar world from which MOOCs were spun, that would be damning enough. Sticking around is important there; credentials and connections reign, starting with the high-school transcript and continuing through graduate degrees. But students may go into an online course knowing that a completion certificate, even offered under the imprimatur of Harvard or UPenn, doesn’t have the same worth. A recent study by a team of researchers from Coursera found that, for many MOOC students, the credential isn’t the goal at all. Students may treat the MOOC as a resource or a text rather than as a course, jumping in to learn new code or view an enticing lecture and back out whenever they want, just as they would while skimming the wider Web. For many, MOOCs may be just one more Internet tool or diversion; in the Coursera study, the retention rate among committed students for a typical class was shown to be roughly on par with that of a mobile app. And the London Times reported last week that, when given the option to get course credit for their MOOC (for a fee), none of the thousand, or so students who enrolled in a British online class did.
In the context of the ever-expanding Web, where apps and sites live in some multivalent state of becoming and unravelling and becoming again, the preliminary grade of incomplete may not be so bad for MOOCs. In traditional courses, incomplete almost always signals frustrated expectations, left lazily unmet. MOOCs’ incomplete also means potential. It hints at an unclaimed territory, for teachers and students, novices and autodidacts, to explain in their own ways. Someday soon they may find a better and more sociable way to do so, but for now there is still much to learn.
Photograph: Troy Aossey/Getty