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#513520 - Mon Feb 15 2010 01:38 PM Interview with LeoDaVinci
BxBarracuda Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Wed Sep 05 2007
Posts: 5117
Loc: Bronx
New�York�USA�...
BX
You mention that you have been all over the world. How did it come about that you had the opportunity to go all over the world? What are some of the places you have lived? What do you remember most of each area?

I got the travel bug from a very young age. I was born in Israel and then moved to Canada when I was just one year old. My parents would take my sister and I on camping trips all over mainland North America from when we were a very young age, so I got an appreciation for travelling, and travelling lightly, from when I was but a mere child. We moved to Western New York State later on, and then we moved back to Israel before I returned to Canada for the studying higher education. But, as Inigo would say, "more pursuit than study lately".

As I grew up, I was able to start travelling on my own to many places. The list of countries I've been to and have done some travelling in, in some particular order: Australia, Canada, Cuba, Cyprus, Egypt, England, France, Honduras, Germany, Israel, Italy, Switzerland, the USA, and the Vatican. So far...

What I remember most about each place are the unique experiences I have that can only be had where I am at the time, and the people I meet while there. Every place in the world has something unique and special and worth exploring.

Paigedamon
Your profile page lists scuba diving, sports, writing, women, stamp collecting, bartending, and FunTrivia as your hobbies. Aside from FT, which of these is your favorite?

Related to travelling, I will usually gear my travels where I can Scuba dive. It's my first and truest love in life, and the foremost thing I think of when planning my next vacation. I will actually pack my gear first and anything else that I can fit into my bags is just a bonus (clothes, toiletries, presents, etc.)

I started diving in 2000 and have logged over 300 dives since then. I qualified as a Divemaster and an Assistant Instructor, and have a few specialties to my name. I'm a huge fan of marine life, and it's a world which fascinates me.

The thing about Scuba diving is that you have to be at peace with yourself. Even though you should never dive alone, you can always feel alone under the water and have to be pretty self-reliant at all times. The serenity and quiet and colours are very calming to me, and I found that I can do some really clear thinking under the sea. In the words of Sebastian: "Down here it's better, down where it's wetter, take it from me!"

Skunkee
Who was the teacher (in the loosest sense of the word) who made the biggest impression on you?

For that I'd have to say it was my grandfather (mom's dad). He was actually born Leonardo, in Argentina. He was a very learned man, and had a very wide range of interests. Amongst other things, he was a tour guide in Israel and he used to take me along on the trips he was guiding, which helped me learn to travel as well.

CellarDoor
I know you have a wide range of academic interests. How did you settle on physics for further work and study? In an ideal world, what do you see yourself working on in ten years?

I've always been fascinated with physics as a subject because I had an excellent physics instructor in high school. He made it fascinating and exciting, and I decided to try it out in university. My undergraduate degree was actually in physics, mathematics and French, however, graduate studies in physics seemed the most interesting, and, not to mention, the most challenging out of all the three.

Physics is present everywhere. Whether it be in science, art, even the social sciences, you can always find something that has a basis in physics. It was interesting to learn the rules of the universe and how everything really works.

In ten years? I don't know where I'll be next year! I will probably decide as I go along.

CellarDoor
Grad students have a reputation for living off ramen noodles and coffee (or possibly Mountain Dew). When you're working long hours on a project, what keeps you going?

Funnily enough, I do not drink coffee (nor have I ever encountered Mountain Dew) nor eat ramen noodles. First of all, one of my chief hobbies is cooking. I learned to cook because I have two younger sisters and both my parents had jobs at some point during high school. So, it was up to me to feed them lunch at times. But, it's become a fascination of mine to create food out of ingredients. Nevertheless, one of my least favourite things in life is washing dishes.

Coffee I used to partake in regularly, and the quantity increased when I was in the army to about 8 cups a day at times. I realized that this was not good for me, and I cut out all coffee cold turkey. It wasn't easy, but, now I consider myself to be a social coffee drinker.

The trick is to set aside a few hours and to make a bunch of casseroles and to freeze them. Then, whenever you need lunch or a snack, you can take one out and microwave it, and you have a meal if you add a quick salad or something to it. My fridge and freezer are usually full of 'concoctions'.v The other trick is to GET SLEEP! I've never had to pull an all-nighter, and you're never as productive as you are when you're well-rested. There's no real substitute for sleep and it ought never be overlooked. Also, fatigue is all in your head. You are always stronger than the urge to shut your eyes for just ten more minutes. Make the decision to wake up and, believe me, you will.

BX
After seeing and taking your quiz on Alpha Epsilon Pi, I was happy to see I had remembered much from when I pledged and then became a brother.
What school did you pledge at? Where there any special reasons that you chose to join a fraternity? Is there an organizational structure within the fraternity house, such as President, Vice-President etc?

I pledged and was a brother in the Tau Omega chapter at the University of Toronto. Everyone joins for different reasons; some join to meet new people, some join for the awesome parties we throw, some join because we do some charity work, some join for the networking, some join for the amazing road trips we have, some join to meet girls. I guess the main reason I joined was the networking, but I also came to cherish the lifelong friendships I've made there.

As for an organizational structure, every chapter is has its own Executive Board made up of a President, Vice President, Scribe, Treasurer, Member-at-Large, Rush Chair (in charge of recruitment), Pledgemaster (in charge of the education of new members) and a Sergeant-at-Arms. Each chapter also has a minor-board, which has committees that actually get things done for the chapter. Then, each of the chapters falls under the umbrella of the International Headquarters, who also have their own Executive Boards.

BX
What is some of the history you have learned about Alpha Epsilon Pi, both nationally and for your Chapter? Do you have any ambitions in regards to the being a part of the International Council and have you written anything or been written about in "The Lion"? What is some of the philanthropy and outside activities you have done with the fraternity?

I actually did have the chance to write for "The Lion", our fraternity publication, once. I wrote one of those chapter updates to see our chapter's name in print because I hadn't seen the Tau Omega name out there. As for being on the International board, I have some aspirations, but it's still too early to tell. I am still in touch with our Executive Director at least once a month if not more because of the work I still do for the fraternity.

Alpha Epsilon Pi is the largest Jewish fraternity and has been around since 1913 at NYU. Charles C. Moskowitz and his ten friends started the fraternity to become a closer-knit social group and to counter the antisemitism at their school. Since then, Alpha Epsilon Pi has grown into what it is today, and it is still growing. It was the first fraternity to expand beyond North America when it opened a chapter in Israel, and soon they will be the first to open a chapter in England as well.

Fraternities are usually known for their wild parties and even wilder rituals as depicted in movies such as "Old School" or "Animal House". Nothing could be further from the truth. Fraternities might know how to have fun, but they also do much philanthropy work to benefit their schools, communities, and other charitable causes. Just this year I've worked with the "Gift of Life" foundation and our drive actually saved four lives, and counting, through marrow matches we were able to find in those two days. We've donated tens of thousands of dollars to the "Diabetes Hope" foundation through an annual party we throw. We've been a major contributor in opening a children's wing at the Sha'are Tzedek hospital. Every year we donate about a hundred blankets in our "Freezing for the Homeless" drive to local charities. Recently, we've organized with two other student organizations in Toronto citywide and have thrown a poker tournament whose proceeds benefited the efforts in Haiti. And the list goes on...

Multiply that by over 140 chapters in Alpha Epsilon Pi, and you have a significant contribution. Multiply that further by all the Greek-letter organizations out there, and you have millions of dollars all organized by college students for their communities and causes close to their hearts. Still, we somehow manage to maintain high GPAs, have fun, throw parties, organize sports teams in our colleges, and many more activities.

BX
What effect, if any, has being a member of Alpha Epsilon Pi had on your life?

Alpha Epsilon Pi opened my eyes to the opportunities that it offered. It really is like a big family. I can now go to any major city in North America and always find a place to stay, and I have hobnobbed with millionaires who would go out of their way to help a brother only because he is a brother. It has honed my leadership abilities and has helped my social circle expand, not to mention given me many fun times and memories.

Ozzz2002
You recently visited Australia where we had the pleasure of your company for a few hours. What were the highlights of your trip, and were there any lowlights?

Ozzz, of course Melbourne was the lowlight of the entire trip... (NOT!)

Everything about Australia was a highlight. I took over one thousand pictures(!) in the three weeks that I was there, and I would have taken many more, but I was pacing myself. There is so much to see and do in Australia that I must go back at some point for a longer period and see everything that I missed out on. This includes, the west coast, the north coast, central Australia, the Great Barrier Reef, and much more.

It was especially great to meet other FunTrivia denizens from the land Down Under.


CellarDoor
What is your favorite spot in Israel that's off the main tourist track?

Probably my favourite place in all of Israel is the Negev Desert. The Negev spans the southern third of the country and has its own special beauty that most people do not see. Me, I can climb a mountain there and look down at the myriad of colours of the sand, the fascinating wildlife, and the unique play of light and shadow. At night you can see all the stars and when the moon is out it's just as easy to get around as during the day. Israel's Negev desert is unique because it has natural erosion craters not found in any other region of the world. There's also a wall with fossil ammonites in it, which many people think they know where it is and is quite a sight. Few actually do know how to get there because the conservationists moved the signs to point at a different place and erased the location off of the maps.

I also know all the good places to get hummus, falafel, and shawarma that tourists don't really know about. In my opinion, where to get good food is the first thing one ought to learn about a country.


Ozzz2002
What type of movies interest you- action, thriller, comedy, romance, sci-fi, or something else? What was the last movie you watched?

In my opinion, there's nothing like a good book. I will always prefer a book to any other form of entertainment. I don't even own a television. I read avidly.

Don't laugh, but the last movie I watched was "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs" which I saw on the plane back from Australia to Toronto. A very cute movie and very amusing. Also, I recently saw "Avatar" on the biggest IMAX in the world (ah, Sydney) and it was amazing.

Skunkee
Have there been any books that have had a profound influence in the way you look at, or approach life?

"The Lord of the Rings" by JRR Tolkien taught me that it's the job not started that takes longest to finish, and that one should not shy away from adventures. Even the smallest person can make a difference. "The Time Traveler's Wife" by Audrey Niffenegger showed me that you have to make the best use of the time you are given, because you never know what might happen to you otherwise. "The Count of Monte Cristo" by Alexandre Dumas taught me that love and honour are the utmost virtues of life (while revenge is a dish best served cold). Finally, "Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption" by Stephen King showed me that hope is something nobody can ever take away from you and that using your hope, you can achieve anything.

Skunkee
Name three people, living or dead, whom you would love to meet.

Leonardo Da Vinci, Moses, and Joe Montana:
My FT namesake, Leonardo Da Vinci was perhaps the most interesting person in history. Far ahead of his time, he was able to think outside the box on many issues and come up with many ideas of his own. I think he'd be an interesting person to meet.

Moses, well, he's just one of the pivotal figureheads in the birth of three of the major religions of the world. I'd have to assume that he'd have something interesting to say, even if he did actually stutter.

Joe Cool is one of the greatest athletes in professional sports. He created a dynasty out of an otherwise mediocre team and held many of the NFL quarterback records when he retired. "The Drive", "The Catch", the W-L record for the '80s, all of that he engineered. He also played for the 49ers, which, through thick and thin, will always be my team.

Paigedamon
You're quite tall--what's the biggest advantage of being vertically blessed?

My mom seems to think that it's to get her the things from the top shelf. I use my height to intimidate others into submission. My ultimate goal is to take over the world, you see. Actually, it's just a different vantage point. I can see over people, and usually have an unobstructed view at movies or concerts.

Ozzz2002
If you were a wild animal, which one would you be, and why?

A Snow leopard. They are near the top of the food chain, and, have you seen them? A Snow leopard is one of the most beautiful animals there are. Very regal and noble, and they are fast and great jumpers. And, they live mainly near the Himalayas, another place I'd like to visit.

SpanishLiz
In what circumstances could you see yourself being a hero or acting heroically?

In all due honesty, heroes do not set out on becoming one. That would just be foolish, in my eyes. An act that seems later as 'heroic' is, in the heat of the moment, more instinctual and less thought-out than one might think. When you're in the midst of battle, there is very little time for free thought. You honestly do not start calculating the risks involved in each action you take, you just do. Later, when you come home later (or perhaps not), the actions taken can be assessed and the heroic value of each calculated. Bottom line, nobody sets out to become a hero. If I ever was one, it was accidental and mostly due to training or instincts that are beyond my control.

BX
You are both and editor and a moderator. Where do you find yourself spending most of your time in regards to your work on the site. Which category that you edit takes the most time and research to work on?

I spend most of my time here editing quizzes. Since one of my favourite things is reading, I find I spend much of my time in the 'Literature' queue working on those quizzes, however, I enjoy all of my three categories equally. I have a particular fondness for 'General' because that's the category I started out in several years ago and it has a little bit of everything; it keeps me on the ball in all categories.

Moderating the Tipping Competitions doesn't take up much of my time at all, and I even run a few of those competitions myself. If anyone out there hasn't checked out the tipping competitions, I highly recommend taking a peek. It's a fun pass-time, it doesn't cost anything but the banter can sometimes make you feel as though high stakes were being thrown about there, and the people who tip regularly are a great set of people.

BX
What do you find is the toughest part of being an Editor and is there any one issue which you dont want to see, more then any others?

The toughest part of being an editor is maintaining a good relationship with a quiz author even while having to reject a quiz. The site has standards that have to be met, and some categories and subcategories have even more stringent requirements. On the other hand, I want to encourage everybody who attempts to write a quiz to keep plugging away at it until they discover the formula for themselves. Some people get dejected as soon as they get rejected for the first time. Nevertheless, it's a natural part of the editing process, and after three times on average, most people manage to get their quiz online. Believe me, the first quiz is the most difficult to get online, from there on, it flows much more easily.

The one thing I never ever want to see in a quiz is plagiarism. If there's one thing I can do without, it's copying of someone's work and displaying it as your own. I'm great at spotting it and locating it, even if you move around clauses and use a thesaurus to change words - I will find you!

BX
You are an avid quiz writer and a clear fan of J.R.R. Tolkien. What is you favorite style of quiz to write? How do you go about writing a quiz once you have the subject? Do you have plans to complete the "By Letter" series and are there enough questions for all the letters in the alphabet?

I find that getting a topic for my quiz is the biggest hurdle I can encounter in writing a quiz. Once I get a topic, it is really easy for me to crack open a few books and read up on it to get the material together for some questions. I think that any subject is fair game and everyone can write a quiz, however, it does take a lot of effort and it does require originality and creativity in abundance. Once I think of my own personal twist to the quiz, it's off to the races and the quizzes just seem to flow from there.

JRR Tolkien is probably my favourite author of all time, and thus the lion's share of my quizzes are about his stories. I started the alphabetical series many years back, and I've been meaning to get back to it at some point. There is definitely enough material, I just have to sit down and write it all out. Some letters (J, Q, X, Z etc.) will probably have to be grouped together into one quiz, and that one will come last. However, first up is going to be my first foray into the 'For Children' category - keep your eyes peeled.

Paigedamon
Since one should never dive alone, whom do you normally go diving with?

I have never found it a problem to either travel on my own, or to show up at a dive club alone. All you need to do is to smile and to strike up a conversation with a total stranger, and you have a new friend. Finding a diving buddy is easy and many divers show up at clubs on their lonesome and partner up with whomever drops in. In addition, many clubs will organize guided dives for groups who are unfamiliar with the area and will have an employee guide the dive.

When I am in Israel, my favourite person to go diving with is my friend Levi. He and I have over 50 dives logged where we went down together.

Ozzz2002
I have never tried diving but would like to. Have you been in any scary situations, eg, equipment failure, packs of hungry sharks, etc? Why do you dive- is it for the adrenalin rush, the communing with nature, spearfishing, treasure hunting, or perhaps just for peace and quiet?

Scary situations - there have been a few. However, the one thing that causes more diving accidents than any other factor is panic. If you're in a bind, DON'T PANIC! One thing that helps out with overcoming the primal need to panic is experience, and the second thing that helps is the fact that you are diving with a buddy, and they will often be able to assist.

Sharks (and other marine life) are only as dangerous as you make them out to be. Respect them and they will respect you, and learn when and where it is safe to dive with them. I have dived with sharks before, and it was not at all that dangerous.

I dive because I find the life aquatic fascinating. A dive is peaceful and relaxing, while exhilarating at the same time. I dive because of the little things you might see - a new coral you hadn't seen before, octopi mating, a new room in a sunken ship you've been in several times before. Sometimes you find "treasures" while diving and you bring them back up top. As a dive instructor I would lead groups, all of a sudden see something, stick it in my BC and see if it was useful up top, because I really couldn't take my eyes off of the other divers. One time while diving I found an unopened bottle of Chivas, took it up top and saw that water hadn't gotten in. That was a good night... Another time I found someone's wallet that had fallen in from some boat - stuck that in the mailbox; the person was probably never expecting to see that again. Another time I found a wok - full sized. It was really difficult to swim with that hanging off of my belt.

Ozzz2002
You have quizzes on all sorts of topics. Describe your method of putting a quiz together. Also, are there any words of advice you could give to first-time authors?

My major hurdle is finding a topic I want to write a quiz about. It might be a book I just finished reading or something I had just heard of for the very first time that I was interested in finding out more about. My very first quiz was about WWI because I had just read a chronicle of that war and wanted to write something about it.

When I sit down and write the questions I try and think of things that I would enjoy being asked about, and write them out. Once I have my questions, I then I try to research the answers to the best of my abilities. I'll close all of my research and only then when I have nothing in front of me will I write the interesting information. I'll then double check to make sure all of my figures and facts are correct and my memory isn't playing games with me, but, as long as I am writing on a fresh slate (i.e. from what I understood), there is no chance of plagiarism.

Skunkee
Travel is something you obviously enjoy. Is there somewhere in the world, that you haven't already been, that you would really love to go?

My next conquest that I have planned in my mind is Africa. Once I'm done this degree and have some time. I'd like to take a few months, start from Ethiopia and do Africa's east coast all the way down to South Africa. I also have my heart set of Scuba diving in Bora Bora, and I'd really like to go to Tierra del Fuego in Argentina and from there to Antarctica... oh, the list can go on forever! My next realistic goal will be New Orleans this summer, and perhaps I'll get to go to Quebec City and perhaps further east in the near future.

Skunkee & BX
Assuming that it were possible (and that money was not an issue) would you be interested in space travel?
Pick one Planet, one Moon, one Galaxy, one Star and one other location found in space that you would most like to see up close.

Space travel, as much as the idea sounds romantic, would not be something I'd do before I've seen everything our own Earth has to offer. The distances are really too far to be realistic, and even if you could freeze your body and pick up where you left off only after you've reached your destination, when you got back to Earth, everything would be so drastically changed that you couldn't even call it "home". Space travel would have to be a lot more efficient before I'd try it.

However, barring all that, I would visit the moon of Jupiter, Io. Interesting volcanic activity on that moon make it quite a fascinating place. If I could travel farther, I'd go see one of the nebulae, maybe the Crab Nebula, which are the birthplace of stars. I think that would beat any television show.

CellarDoor
As someone who loves to cook, what's your favorite thing to make, given plenty of time and unlimited ingredients?

My favourite thing to make is a tuna and noodle casserole. I learned it from my mother, but, improvising and experimenting, I've managed to perfect it. When I went away to the army and my mom made it for lunch for my sisters, my little sister piped up "...but Leo makes it so much better..." Ah, little sisters. The recipe, unfortunately, is secret. I'd really like to take the time and learn to make more desserts. I have a few favourites that I reuse over and over, but I need to branch out and make different ones that I'm not so familiar with.

If anyone wants to exchange recipes, I'm open to that. I have a few non-secret recipes that have been well-proven over the years.

CellarDoor
What book are you reading now, and what's next on your list?

Honestly I can't read one book at a time. Right now I have "Crime and Punishment" by Dostoevsky, "The Honorary Consul" by Graham Greene, and "Watership Down" by Richard Adams all open on my bedside table. Next up on my list is "The Shadow Rising" by Robert Jordan. Why? Because my favourite card in my wallet is my library card and that was the latest in a long list of books that I ordered online that came in for pickup to the branch nearest me. What a great service. If there's something you take away from this interview - get a library card and support your city's public libraries. Nothing beats the feel and smell of a real book.

BX
What is the big event each year for your Chapter?
Are there any annual get togethers, far from Campus, that occur each year for current House Members and Alumni?


In my chapter we have a formal every year that many alumni, like myself, still go out to because it is the best party of the year. Not only are you treated to a great dinner, music, open bar etc. but you are with your closest friends and there's nothing that can beat that.

Other than that, every year the fraternity hosts a convention and all sorts of people show up for that. Alumni and undergraduates alike will convene and tell stories, exchange ideas, receive awards, and have a great time together. Last year the convention was in Las Vegas, the year before in Chicago. This year it will be in New Orleans. The 2013 convention, which will mark 100 years for Alpha Epsilon Pi, will be in New York City, where the fraternity was born. It will also attempt to be the largest reunion ever of alumni, and, for the event, the fraternity has booked off the entire Waldorf-Astoria hotel It promises to be huge!

CellarDoor
Your admiration of Joe Montana shows a deep familiarity with American Football. What's your favorite sport to play, and what's your favorite sport to watch?

I play many team sports because I enjoy keeping active. I used to play handball pretty often, but, when I moved to Toronto I discovered that it's called here "European handball" and it's virtually unknown and never played. However, I play basketball often, some volleyball, and, some soccer (in my mind it will always be "football").

As for watching sports, there are a few sports I watch regularly and keep rack of religiously. Gridiron football I follow the San Francisco 49ers through thick and thin (and, in recent years it's been pretty thin). In basketball I'm a Los Angeles Lakers fan and have been since Magic and Kareem played there. In European football, it's Manchester United whether in the EPL or the UEFA Champion's League. And finally, I really enjoy watching professional tennis, and I have to say that I've never seen a player quite like Roger Federer and look forward to (hopefully) meeting him this upcoming summer when I'll be volunteering at the Rogers Cup (men are in Toronto this year). Last summer I got to meet Kim Clijsters.

Ozzz2002
You have been in the Tipping comps for quite some time now. What attracted you to such silliness? Was it the promise of glory, or perhaps bucketloads of prizemoney? Do you have a system or just a dartboard/coin?

I don't know exactly why I started tipping. Maybe I stumbled in on a mis-pressed link, or maybe it was someone's recommendation... I can't remember. However, pretty soon I was given charge of all the tennis competitions, and by that time there were very few competitions I wasn't tipping in. At some point gtho4 asked me whether I wanted to moderate that forum as well. In any case, tipping is fun especially when the prizes are bragging rights for an entire year. Every time I can beat an Australian at the A-League or an American at the NFL it's a great achievement.

BX
I am a fan of the T.V. show "Big Bang Theory", where one of the major characters is a strong proponent of String Theory and has no time for those who believe in Loop Quantum Gravity. Is there a simple way to describe either of these theories and which one do you think is more probable to be true, or do you hold to a different theory?

Let's begin the simple explanation with the reason behind the need for string theory and Loop Quantum Gravity. There is a problem reconciling between Quantum Theory and General Relativity - neither of them can explain exactly why gravity (one of the four forces in the universe) happens and how it fits in with the troika of the other three forces (strong force, weak force, and electromagnetism). The theory that will unite all four forces is known as the Grand Unifying Theory, or GUT.

There are two leading theories for GUT, one is string theory and the other is Loop Quantum Gravity (LQG). String theory was the first one out there that was a Theory of Everything (TOE). [author's segue: so, now you either have a GUT feeling or one in your TOE] String theory attempts to utilize the higher dimensions of space-time to explain what is going on in our universe. I believe that the accepted number is now eleven dimensions. String theory explains that all fundamental particles are actually one-dimensional miniature black holes, in a nutshell. LQG, on the other hand, attempts to preserve as much of General Relativity as possible, and maintains that space is a network of spin foam, and it is a network of loops that weave together with each other to form gravity.

Me? What do I believe in? I don't actually do this kind of physics. Coming from a university that is very highly invested in string theory then I guess I tend to lean towards that, however, I would not be disappointed to discover that another theory was more correct.

Skunkee
What do you want to be when you grow up?

An editor on FunTrivia.
In truth, I don't ever want to grow up.


Great work, thanks to everyone involved.


Edited by Pagiedamon (Mon Dec 31 2012 12:50 PM)

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#513521 - Mon Feb 15 2010 02:22 PM Re: Leo DaVinci Interview
Pagiedamon Offline
Moderator

Registered: Sun Jun 15 2008
Posts: 2592
Loc: North Carolina USA
Excellent interview! Good luck taking over the world, LDV!

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#513522 - Mon Feb 15 2010 02:59 PM Re: Leo DaVinci Interview
ren33 Offline
Moderator

Registered: Thu Sep 30 1999
Posts: 12427
Loc: Kowloon Tong HongKong
That is a super interview! I really enjoyed getting to know you better Leo!
_________________________
Wandering aimlessly through FT since 1999.

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#513523 - Mon Feb 15 2010 03:40 PM Re: Leo DaVinci Interview
ozzz2002 Offline
Moderator

Registered: Mon Dec 03 2001
Posts: 19996
Loc: Sydney NSW Australia
That is a great interview, LDV, and thanks for allowing me to be a small part of it.
_________________________
The key to everything is patience. You get the chicken by hatching the egg, not smashing it.

Ex-Editor, Hobbies and Sports, and Forum Moderator

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#513524 - Mon Feb 15 2010 03:55 PM Re: Leo DaVinci Interview
denni19 Offline


Registered: Tue Sep 05 2006
Posts: 14562
Loc: Bucharest Romania
Lovely interview and interviewee


Dear traveller Leo,

If you ever add Romania to your long list and decide to visit Bucharest, I'll be happy to guide you to the best places to get hummus, falafel, and shawarma in here.

And what's more, I too have a tuna and pasta (conchiglie) recipe, which is not very secret and has brought me many 'medals' from family and friends.
_________________________
"The hardest thing to learn in life is which bridge to cross and which to burn." - David Russell

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#513525 - Tue Feb 16 2010 11:40 AM Re: Leo DaVinci Interview
chris42 Offline
Forum Adept

Registered: Fri Nov 28 2003
Posts: 174
Loc: The Netherlands
Nice interview Leo. I lived in Israel from 1992-1995 and know exactly how you feel about the Negev Desert. Did a five day/night desert trek and saw some fantastic sights and scenery. My lasting memory was the complete and utter silence of the desert, so quiet in fact, that you can only hear the sound of blood rushing through your ears. A very spiritual place where you can totally lose yourself and you really do feel something out there!
_________________________
The meek shall inherit the Earth. But only when the strong let them.

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#513526 - Wed Feb 17 2010 02:09 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
LeoDaVinci Offline
Moderator

Registered: Fri Mar 23 2001
Posts: 11549
Loc: Ontario Canada
If any of you has a travel bug, I highly recommend going to Israel and seeing it with your own eyes. Thousands of years of history, birthplace of three major religions, four different kinds of climate, four seas (one of which you cannot sink in), and millions of friendly people. Ask me for recommendations.

As for that recipe, I'm definitely willing to give it a whirl! Romania here I come... eventually.


Edited by LeoDaVinci (Wed Feb 17 2010 02:10 PM)
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#513527 - Mon Feb 22 2010 09:11 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
Gatsby722 Offline
Pure Diamond

Registered: Fri May 18 2001
Posts: 123698
Loc: Canton
OhioUSA
Awesome interview ! Mr. Leo --- you know (I hope) that I've always admired you as high as the sky is up. And I don't see that changing, on my end. You're a pretty special guy. Now that I've schmoozed you outrageously, I reckon ? Let me ask you a question --- one I used to baffle interviewees (those smart lot looking for a living wage as they went, with smarts as a benefit) at my bookstores. One of two things. Which'd you rather have? A dollar or a donut? And please tell me why you chose the choice that you did.
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#513528 - Tue Feb 23 2010 07:32 AM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
LeoDaVinci Offline
Moderator

Registered: Fri Mar 23 2001
Posts: 11549
Loc: Ontario Canada
Obviously I'd choose to have a dollar. A donut here costs 88 cents, so I'd still have 12 cents left over when I'd go purchase myself a donut, if I was actually craving a donut at the time.
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#513529 - Tue Feb 23 2010 02:06 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
dg_dave Offline
Champion Poster

Registered: Sun Oct 05 2003
Posts: 23677
Loc: near Stafford, VirginiaUSA
Quote:

A donut here costs 88 cents, so I'd still have 12 cents left over




I can get two donuts for a dollar. Granted, I wouldn't have anything left; they're 50c each.
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#513530 - Tue Feb 23 2010 04:30 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
LeoDaVinci Offline
Moderator

Registered: Fri Mar 23 2001
Posts: 11549
Loc: Ontario Canada
Wait, I was offered a US Dollar? That's worth even more... for now.
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#513531 - Tue Feb 23 2010 05:39 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
SilverMoonsong Offline
Moderator

Registered: Sun Nov 07 1999
Posts: 3976
Loc: Durham, NorthCarolinaUSA
Leo,

When will your traveling soul bring you to the southern US?

I'm sure there are several of us in this area that would love to meet you (besides me!). Etrum lives minutes from me (and surprisingly we've never met). Pagiedamon is only a couple hours southwest, and LadyMacB is a few hours north. McGruff is also in VA. I'm sure I'm forgetting people, but you're a smart guy, you understand what I'm saying here.
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#513532 - Wed Feb 24 2010 11:17 AM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
MomOf2 Offline
Mainstay

Registered: Tue Dec 09 2008
Posts: 872
Loc: Abu Dhabi UnitedArabEmirates
I love scuba diving! What was your favourite dive site? What is the coolest thing you have seen underwater, and what have you not seen that is on your wish list?

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#513533 - Wed Feb 24 2010 01:19 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
BxBarracuda Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Wed Sep 05 2007
Posts: 5117
Loc: Bronx
New�York�USA�...
If you drive in from the north LDV, I suggest the Blue Ridge Highway through Virginia. Great scenery and quite a bit of history along that road too.

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#513534 - Wed Feb 24 2010 01:35 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
LeoDaVinci Offline
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Registered: Fri Mar 23 2001
Posts: 11549
Loc: Ontario Canada
Quote:

I love scuba diving! What was your favourite dive site? What is the coolest thing you have seen underwater, and what have you not seen that is on your wish list?



My favourite dive sight at the moment is the Red Sea. It's a nature reserve so the fish there are unafraid to come right up to the divers and some largely ignore the divers. There's an abundance of life, coral, colours and rarely any current. The temperature is between 21-29 degrees year-round and it is a very very cool place to dive.

The coolest thing I have seen underwater... hmmm, there are so many, do I have to pick one? I guess I'd say it was a whale shark. There's one that detours into the Red Sea every summer and is very friendly and playful. He's a 'smaller' one, so, only around 7 meters in length. Ha, swimming with a 7m long fish is still pretty intimidating. Whenever he's around everyone gets right into the water and he'll come right up tot he divers.

My wish list: GBR! I was in Australia and didn't have the time to go to the Great Barrier Reef. I hang my head in shame. Also, I want to dive the atolls of Bora Bora, that is my retirement goal, to have my own yacht and to moor off of random Pacific islands and to dive out my years...
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#513535 - Wed Feb 24 2010 04:48 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
Lones78 Offline
Prolific

Registered: Mon Apr 27 2009
Posts: 1498
Loc: Forrestfield Western�Austral...
LDV
If you come to Australia, you must also check out Ningaloo Reef in Western Australia. It definately rivals the Barrier Reef (from what I've heard). Just one of those secrets that's not so well known outside Australia
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#513536 - Sat Feb 27 2010 07:02 AM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
Schoonie101 Offline
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Registered: Sun Jun 24 2007
Posts: 1178
Loc: California USA
LDV, great interview! Enjoyed it!

Pardon the ignorance but where is Ningaloo Reef? Is it near Gnaraloo?

West Australia has been on my list of future travel locations for a while - itching to get over there. Mostly that whole SW peninsula area. Looks seriously sick. Can't wait to sample the goods over there. Even if what I have seen so far wave-wise looks more than a little terrifying - it's all good, I like that. I've got a masochistic jester streak in me.
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#513537 - Sat Feb 27 2010 06:07 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
Lones78 Offline
Prolific

Registered: Mon Apr 27 2009
Posts: 1498
Loc: Forrestfield Western�Austral...
Ningaloo Reef is in the north-western part of Western Australia. It runs just out of Exmouth.

It's hot up there. I dont know how much in the way of waves either - you are better 'down south' for that (Margaret River, etc).

Ningaloo Reef is where you can swim with whale sharks and myriad other fish and corals. Very pretty I am assured. There are a few sanctuaries up that way so plenty of snapper to feed and swim with - but you cant catch and eat them

Check this out:

http://www.westernaustralia.com/en/Destinations/Australias_Coral_Coast/Ningaloo/Pages/Ningaloo.aspx
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#513538 - Sat Feb 27 2010 07:22 PM Re: LeoDaVinci Interview
Schoonie101 Offline
Prolific

Registered: Sun Jun 24 2007
Posts: 1178
Loc: California USA
Thanks for the link, Lones!

Those photos are amazing and that water color is out of this world. It must be incredible swimming and diving with the whale sharks and rays as that link describes. I can imagine that it would be one spectacular place to snorkel or scuba dive!
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