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Welcome to my blog, which was once a mailing list of the same name and is still generated by mail. Please reply via the "comment" links.

Always interested in offers/projects/new ideas. Eclectic experience in fields like: numerical computing; Python web; Java enterprise; functional languages; GPGPU; SQL databases; etc. Based in Santiago, Chile; telecommute worldwide. CV; email.

Personal Projects

Lepl parser for Python.

Colorless Green.

Photography around Santiago.

SVG experiment.

Professional Portfolio

Calibration of seismometers.

Data access via web services.

Cache rewrite.

Extending OpenSSH.

C-ORM: docs, API.

Last 100 entries

Small Success With Go!; Re: Quick message - This link is broken; Adding Reverb To The Echo Chamber; Sox Audio Tools; Would This Have Been OK?; Honesty only important economically before institutions develop; Stegangraphy via PS4; OpenCL Mess; More Book Recommendations; Good Explanation of Difference Between Majority + Minority; Musical Chairs - Who's The Privileged White Guy; I can see straight men watching this conversation and laffing; When it's Actually a Source of Indignation and Disgust; Meta Thread Defending POC Causes POC To Close Account; Indigenous People Of Chile; Curry Recipe; Interesting Link On Marginality; A Nuclear Launch Ordered, 1962; More Book Recs (Better Person); It's Nuanced, And I Tried, So Back Off; Marx; The Negative Of Positive; Jenny Holzer Rocks; Huge Article on Cultural Evolution and More; "Ignoring language theory"; Negative Finger Counting; Week 12; Communication Via Telecomm Bids; Finding Suspects Via Relatives' DNA From Non-Crime Databases; Statistics and Information Theory; Ice OK in USA; On The Other Hand; (Current Understanding Of) Chilean Taxes / Contributions; M John Harrison; Playing Games on a Cloud GPU; China Gamifies Real Life; Can't Help Thinking It's Thoughtcrime; Mefi Quotes; Spray Painting Bike Frame; Weeks 10 + 11; Change: No Longer Possible To Merge Metadata; Books on Old Age; Health Tree Maps; MRA - Men's Rights Activists; Writing Good C++14; Risk Assessment - Fukushima; The Future of Advertising and Surveillance; Travelling With Betaferon; I think I know what I dislike so much about Metafilter; Weeks 8 + 9; More; Pastamore - Bad Italian in Vitacura; History Books; Iraq + The (UK) Governing Elite; Answering Some Hard Questions; Pinochet: The Dictator's Shadow; An Outsider's Guide To Julia Packages; Nobody gives a shit; Lepton Decay Irregularity; An Easier Way; Julia's BinDeps (aka How To Install Cairo); Good Example Of Good Police Work (And Anonymity Being Hard); Best Santiago Burgers; Also; Michael Emmerich (Vibrator Translator) Interview (Japanese Books); Clarice Lispector (Brazillian Writer); Books On Evolution; Looks like Ara (Modular Phone) is dead; Index - Translations From Chile; More Emotion in Chilean Wines; Week 7; Aeon Magazine (Science-ish); QM, Deutsch, Constructor Theory; Interesting Talk Transcripts; Interesting Suggestion Of Election Fraud; "Hard" Books; Articles or Papers on depolarizing the US; Textbook for "QM as complex probabilities"; SFO Get Libor Trader (14 years); Why Are There Still So Many Jobs?; Navier Stokes Incomplete; More on Benford; FBI Claimed Vandalism; Architectural Tessellation; Also: Go, Blake's 7; Delusions of Gender (book); Crypto AG DID work with NSA / GCHQ; UNUMS (Universal Number Format); MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses); Interesting Looking Game; Euler's Theorem for Polynomials; Weeks 3-6; Reddit Comment; Differential Cryptanalysis For Dummies; Japanese Graphic Design; Books To Be Re-Read; And Today I Learned Bugs Need Clear Examples; Factoring a 67 bit prime in your head; Islamic Geometric Art; Useful Julia Backtraces from Tasks; Nothing, however, is lost with less discomfort than that which, when lost, cannot be missed

© 2006-2015 Andrew Cooke (site) / post authors (content).


From: "andrew cooke" <andrew@...>

Date: Wed, 20 Sep 2006 16:53:13 -0400 (CLT)


I cancelled my subscription with La CAV (the Chilean wine club) today. 
They have four levels of membership, where you receive 2 (5.500), 3
(4.900), 6 (4.400) or 12 (3.300) bottles of wine a year.  The price *per
bottle* of monthly membership (minimum one year) is in brackets.

I signed up for 3 bottles a month, so pay 4.900 a bottle.  That's a lot of
money for a bottle of wine in Chile.  You can pay much more, of course,
but a drinkable table wine (the equivalent of wine by a glass in a
*decent* restaurant - there are many, including some I enjoy, that will
give you wine from a much cheaper box) costs 1.600.  A "reserve" costs
around 2.500-3.000.  So for about 5.000 you're up in the levels of
seriously expensive wine (I took a bottle of 5.000 wine to the states for
an American friend and he declared it the best wine he has ever drunk;
he's no great expert, but you get the idea).

And the club prides itself on the quality of its sommelier.

So you'd expect very good wine indeed.

In fact, you get wine that sells for, typically, around 3.500 in a
supermarket.  That's not quite fair, because some of the wines are from
smaller producers, which can be difficult to find in supermarkets (there
are some specialist wine shops, but they tend to be in rather fashionale
places - we're talking about wine so expensive it's out of the price range
of most people here).  And sometimes you do get one bottle that is more
expensive.  On the other hand, you can sometimes find special offers with
significantly lower prices.

Frankly, I don't think the sommelier does much.  Each month the wine is
from a different company.  The magazine, which accompanies the wine - more
on that later - has a feature on the company in question.  So this isn't a
case of hand-picked wines, chosen for their exceptional qualities. 
Rather, I suspect, wine companies (vineyards, in the broad sense of the
word) see it as a marketing opportunity: a chance for targetted promotion
to the wealthiest people in the country.

To understand more clearly what is happening, you need to grasp the
politics in Chile.  Look again at the prices per bottle.  People signing
up for 12 bottles a month are the ones that are getting good value. 
They're also, I strongly suspect, the very richest people businessmen:
people who are using that wine to entertain, on a regular basis.

There a close correlation between wealth, the conservative (far, in my
terms) right, and the catholic church.   Read: big, rich families.  A
recent fashion amongst the "blond" wives (there's a racial thing - if
you're rich, you either are, or aspire to be, white, so the women bleach
their hair - walk round Las Condes, La Dehesa, Vitacura, and just open
your eyes: it's obvious) was a necklace showing how many children you
have.  Get those families together at the weekend, knocking back nice
wine, and you'll need a dozen bottles a month.

And the magazine.  Reading it made me feel dirty.  Apart from the photos
of blond (again) people enjoying themselves at "cultural events" (I swear,
they have featured polo mathces several times) it's full of adverts for
luxury goods.  Perfumes, expensive cars.  Offers on exclusive health

In short, it's just another club for the rich.  If you just want a few
bottles, you can get better wine (for much less, if you shop around). 
Sign up only if you want a dozen bottles a month, or are happy and willing
to subsidise those that do (people that, in all honesty, really do not
need your help).


Only they ignored the canellation...

From: "andrew cooke" <andrew@...>

Date: Wed, 22 Nov 2006 12:02:14 -0300 (CLST)

So I received yet more wine today.  And they called me up then refused to
cancel unless I wrote again...  Surreal.  Hopefully it really is canceled

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