What's The Diff?

The things Quicken Loans team members care about and want to share with the world

Jonathan Slappey

Cleveland Cavaliers Strike it Rich in the NBA Draft Lottery

 

With the 2011 NBA Draft approaching fast, Thursday June 23rd, one team is making major headlines with two of the top four picks in the draft.

The Cleveland Cavaliers, represented by owner Dan Gilbert’s 14 – year old son Nick, won the draft lottery and walked away with the coveted number one overall pick.

Adding excitement to an already successful draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers were also awarded the number four overall pick in the 2011 draft.

It has been several years since one team collected two of the top 10 picks in the draft.  The last time one team won two pick so high was 2009, when the Minnesota Timberwolves won the second and sixth overall picks in the first round.  They selected point guards Ricky Rubio, from Europe, and Johnny Flynn, from Syracuse, respectively.

This is great news for a team who won 19 games last season looking to upgrade the roster and add excitement to The Q Arena while beginning a new era.

The excitement proved to be contagious as the Gilbert family, Dan, Grant, 13, and Nick high fived each other and celebrated with anyone in arms reach as the announcer revealed Cleveland as the winner of the number one overall pick.

As the reporter introduced Nick Gilbert, as the Cavaliers representative for the NBA draft lottery, he exclaimed the now famous and rhetorical phrase, “What’s not to like!” which is in fact the perfect slogan for the Cleveland Cavaliers future.

After acquiring the first overall and fourth pick of the first round, the Cavaliers also obtained the second and 24th pick in the second round of the NBA draft.  The success of the 2011 NBA draft lottery for the Cleveland Cavaliers and their fans adds truth to the common saying, “the rich get richer.”

With four picks in the 2011 NBA draft, great seats, season tickets available at The Quicken Loans Arena, and a breakout star and Ambassador of the National Children’s Tumor Association, Nick Gilbert…when it pertains to the Cleveland Cavaliers 2011 and future ask yourself “What’s not to like!”

 

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Power to Oppress

Editor’s note: This post is a departure from our usually editorial content on the DIFF blog, but we wanted to share this with our readers, as the writer strongly believes in civil and human rights – something we all hold dear. The content here does not reflect or represent any official stance of Quicken Loans and is not intended to do so. This is simply the opinion of the writer and his position on world events he feels important. In most cases, if we were to write a post about civil or human rights, we would highlight a positive example of a person who has fought for them, such as Gandhi or Martin Luther King, Jr. In this case, the writer points out a negative, with the main hope that civil and human rights can one day be enjoyed by people everyone on Earth.

Robert Mugabe, President of Zimbabwe, found himself in World News headlines once again recently for what seems to be a never-ending list of political infractions.

In an arrest more senseless than Plaxico Burress‘s recent two-year sentence for shooting himself in the leg, President Mugabe had his own police sergeant, Alois Mahunu, arrested and imprisoned for using the “Presidential” toilet.

In one royal flush, Mahunu answered the unfortunate call of nature resulting in Mugabe’s operatives charging him with “suspicion of invading the Presidential privy.”

Mugabe, head of Zimbabwe for over for 31 years, is more renowned for his infamous “starve into submission” election tactics of 2004, when he used food scarcity as a political weapon to influence voters to vote for him in the upcoming election.

Records show that 125 people died of malnutrition in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe’s second largest city, in 2004.  However, the toll is considered to be exponentially higher in rural areas of Zimbabwe - due to no available health statistics.

Mugabe, who received an honorary LLD degree from Michigan State in 1990, refused to accept or ask for international aid in order to keep the strong-arm on Zimbabwe’s depleted food supply.

The concept was simple, citizens who did not turnover their voter card did not eat.

Nonetheless, the “starve into submission” campaign had lost its influence by the time Mugabe ran for reelection in 2008 prompting his most blatant attempt to fix an election to date.

Reports ran rampant of Mugabe’s brutal killings, violence, and arrest of anyone involved with the opposition, Morgan Tsvangirais movement for Democratic Change.  These extreme measures taken by Mugabe to gain reelection influenced Tsvangirai to pull out of election stating, “a free and fair election is impossible.”

Here’s the thing – change is possible and the people of Zimbabwe deserve it.

In fact, change happened just recently. Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak ruled for 30 years before he abruptly stepped down in February of this year. 

For this reason, spreading awareness about the unrest in Zimbabwe is imperative for the aspirations of  peace, equality, and justice of the Zimbabwean people. I hope they too can enjoy the freedom I enjoy everyday and take for granted. That freedom, is something I consider “the DIFF’!

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A Rose to Remember Warm Thoughts in December

 

Varying in size from compact to miniature, to climbers that can reach seven meters, a rose is typically the first item one considers when attempting to bring a smile to the face of another.

June is National Rose month so take some time out and learn about the flower that inspired countless poems, accompanied innumerable first dates, and lied with loved ones in their final resting place.

With over 100 species, roses are typically the accessory of choice when friends offer condolences, thoroughbred three-year olds win races, and most notably when men court women.

While many people may be familiar with the tradition of bringing roses to a woman on your first date or spreading roses on the bed, the first night of your honeymoon, the ritual actually dates back to 41 BC when Cleopatra received her beloved Marc Antony in a room filed 18 inches deep with rose petals.

Accordingly, with men believing the more roses you buy, the more romantic a woman perceives you, it’s no surprise that 1.2 billion roses are sold annually.

Red roses represent love and respect.  However roses come in many colors and each color represents a different meaning:

  • Deep pink roses represent gratitude and appreciation
  • Light pink roses convey admiration and sympathy
  • White roses signify reverence and humility
  • Yellow roses embody joy and gladness
  • Orange roses epitomize enthusiasm and desire

The combination of roses represent more than colors that match or fuse together well.  Specific color combinations have particular meanings as well:

  • Red & yellow blended roses symbolize gaiety and joviality
  • Pale blended tones represent sociability and friendship

Five states selected the rose as the state flower including Georgia, Iowa, New York, North Dakota and the District of Columbia.   Notably absent from that list is California which produces roughly 60 percent of the roses grown in the United States.

A medieval symbol of virginity, the white rose is linked to the Virgin Mary.  Aside from love and respect the red rose is also religiously symbolic of the blood of Christ and a symbol of his passion and resurrection.

In discrepancy with Poisons 1988 power ballad, “every rose has its thorn,” a thornless rose signifies love at first sight.

Participate in celebrating National Rose Month by taking a rose to some one who is sick and shut in or a woman you admire.  It will certainly bring a smile to their face and leave a sweet scent in your mitt.

George William Curtis said it best, “ The fragrance always stays in the hand that gives the rose.”

 

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The Tune of June – National Accordion Awareness Month

Many Americans associate the month of June with Summer Solstice, the NBA finals, and finally Candy Month!  Nonetheless, 22 years ago San Francisco native Tom Torriglia decided that June was the perfect month to educate and spread the word about the resurgence in popularity of…the accordion!

Favored by Steven Q. Urkel of the Family Matters sitcom, the accordion is a member of the reed family and commonly mistaken to be a part of the keyboard family.   Billy Joel and Barry Manilow are two popular musicians who became proficient with the accordion.  Guitarist Nils Lofgren lists the accordion as the first instrument he learned to play.

Accordions that have keys on them are called piano accordions and were first manufactured in the United States in 1907, in San Francisco.

However, China is the largest manufacturer and exporter of accordions in the world.

The accordion family includes five instruments:

Although accordions are popular for being used at Bar Mitzvahs and weddings, Canadian country singer Shania Twain used the accordion on her third studio album, Come On Over, and accumulated triple platinum sales.

All Things Accordion, in San Francisco, will host the Polka Band and Bella Ciao to kick off their entertainment celebration for National Accordion Awareness Month.

Detroit will not miss out on any of the excitement this month as hometown band, the Hot Club of Detroit, has local concerts planned in:

  • Kalamazoo – June 21st, Fontana Chamber Arts
  • Ann Arbor – June 23rd, 8 p.m. – Kerrytown Concert House
  • Detroit – June 24th, 9:30 p.m. – Cliff Bell’s

So try something new and engage in the spirit of National Accordion Awareness Month by learning and listening to the sounds of the accordion this June.

 

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Today's Date:
Saturday, July 22, 2017