No Internet Last Night

I’m not sure what happened last night but my Internet was not working. No Internet, no DigiDame. I wrote my daily blog post, but the email blast never went out, I can see by the stats that most of you just went to the DigiDame website to see if I wrote something.

I did write a post and it is important that you read it on “God’s Bankers, A History of Money and Power at the Vatican.” This book is getting a lot of attention because of its subject matter. All you have to do is scroll down to read what I wrote.

I think I will also use this opportunity to post some recent photos.

New fashion designs at Art Wynwood.

A panel of gallerists at Books & Books talking about collecting art.





Ditch the Toilet for Better In-Flight Wi-Fi


I think Americans have lost their minds. I just read a survey commissioned by Honeywell that said 13 percent of Americans would be willing to forgo a bathroom for a better in-flight wireless Internet connection.

This is what life is all about these days. Everything has to be connected. Eighty-six percent of Americans now really want Wi-Fi onboard. Nine out of 10 would even be willing to sacrifice amenities if Internet was available on domestic and international flights.

Another surprising number was that 73 percent of flyers said they want Wi-Fi for non-work purposes. They want to talk to family and friends during the flight, download music, and stream movies. No one could have predicted the importance of the Internet during flights. Most passengers complained that the strength of the Internet currently provided was only fair at best.

Honeywell is currently in the midst of developing technology that should enable Wi-Fi speeds of up to 49Mbps for airlines flying Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner, 747-8 Intercontinental, 777, 737NG, and 737 MAX. That is pretty powerful.

Wi-Fi is now available on 38 percent of US domestic flights. Delta is the leading Wi-Fi provider.

So, for better or worse, in a year or two every flight will have a strong Internet connection. Bye-bye to those quiet moments.

Removing Yourself from the Internet


I have a friend who doesn’t exist on the Internet. He is bland as bland can be, yet he still refuses to put any of his identification online. He once warned me, “Once you are on, you can’t get off.” I thought about it for a while and realized it was too late for me. What was he afraid of? Probably nothing. He has led such an unblemished life that any attention would seem like a scandal to him.

Continue reading

Don’t Panic

I just wanted to pass this along to all my DigiDame friends.

Why a Quarter-Million People Around the World May Lose the Internet Monday –

Read the following story and follow the simple instructions.

Internet + Death

When I was in the taxi riding home from JFK airport two weeks ago, after our trip to Croatia, I received this text from the superintendent of my NYC coop: “Your neighbor in 10A passed.”

I was stunned on several accounts.

First, I never understood that expression. Passed? I am not trying to be funny, but passed what? An exam? Broke wind? Passed a stone? I just asked Eliot if he agreed with the expression “passed” before writing this post. He got annoyed with me and in a tone that only a 100-year marriage could produce (remember, we work together 24/7), he sighed, “What do you think it means? Passed. Like in passed on. Like no longer living. Like on to the afterlife.” It seemed to make sense during his explanation, but I don’t like it.

Secondly, I was stunned to receive a text. That seems to be the way I am receiving death notices these days. Cut and dry. No need for small talk. “Virginia passed.” Now don’t say that this is “just New Yorkers.” Many people in my coop know each other well because we are always at each other’s throat over some issue.

Virginia was another story. My quiet neighbor who I’ve seen maybe 10 times in the last 20 years even though we lived side-by-side, seemed happy and healthy when we met at the trash chute a month ago. She was around my age and single. I was on my way to work when she opened the door to throw out her garbage. This was our usual encounter. Virginia had been sick a few years back and looked frail for quite some time. In the last year or two she seemed active and carefree. I also confirmed this with our doormen. They know things like that.

I tried to talk to our super Salim face-to-face, but he was too busy in the morning before I left for work and off the premises when I came home at night. So the texting continued. “What happened?” I texted.  He texted back, “Her nephew called me to say that he couldn’t reach her. When he came to the building a few hours later, we both went into her apartment together. We found her in bed, gone.”

When I met up with Salim days later, he told me that in the 20 years he has been working in the building this marked the eighth body he’s discovered — several found in bath tubs, on the floor, or slumped in a chair.

The third thing that stunned me was the notice the police posted on Virginia’s door. Until an autopsy is performed and a death is determined, no one is allowed to enter the apartment. The seal on the door cannot be broken. Salim promised to text me the findings. Other neighbors asked me to text them what I’ve learned.

Texting has replaced hanging out the window, screaming your neighbor’s name.

By the way, we argue by text as well but we use CAPS. “SCREW YOU!!”

I wanted to tell you this story after reading Jenna Wortham’s New York Times piece about “Death Online.” Jenna has been reporting on digital news for years. She is well-respected and adored.

NYTimes: Digital Diary: Talking About Death Online

Posting about a personal loss online makes people — both the poster and the readers — uncomfortable. Why does the social Web seem limited to a few emotions?

Rest In Peace Virginia