Last night, like many other people around here, I was awakened by a monstrous thunderstorm. I have a love/hate relationship with thunderstorms. I think they’re an interesting phenomenon, and exciting to watch. I just don’t care for them much when they come close.
I’m not sure when it started, but thunderstorms would trigger extreme anxiety and panic attacks. I only felt safe in large buildings where I couldn’t hear or see what was going on outside. At the very least, I would try to get to a basement somewhere. But at the time this was going on, I lived in a small mobile home with very thin walls, and no basement to hide in. It was horrible.
Luckily, with the help of some anti-anxiety medication, I was able to face my fears head-on. I’m nowhere near as frightened of thunderstorms that I used to be. I can usually tolerate them now, but I still have a hard time when they come in the middle of the night. Also to my advantage, I now live in a house with a basement.
So there I was last night, wide awake and chillin’ in the basement bathroom while I waited for the storm to pass. No anxiety. No panic attack. As I sat there, I tracked the storm with the weather app on my iPad.
I didn’t even have to look outside.
As many people do, I enjoy surfing the Internet in my spare time. In doing so, I run across many interesting links. Most of the time I bookmark them and then forget about them. At this moment, I have scads and scads of unorganized bookmarks saved in various places. In an effort to try to go through them and organize them, I’d like to start a new feature on this blog. Every Saturday I’ll be going through my bookmarks and posting interesting links for you to explore and enjoy. Sound good? OK then! Let’s get started!
It’s like a Wikipedia for recipes.
It’s like a Wikipedia for music.
Download thousands of fonts.
Home Inventory is a free program for Windows or Mac that lets you create a home inventory complete with product photo and receipt scan.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month. This is important to me because I have a mental illness. I’ve been diagnosed with major depression.
Thought I’ve been suffering from this illness for many many years, I am just now starting to talk about it. I’ve decided that hiding it away does no good. So I’m bringing it out into the open for all to see. I’m not ashamed of it. It’s part of who I am. A pretty big part, I’m afraid. Hopefully bringing it out into the open will help the healing process.
I’ve started a new blog where I tackle the subject of my depression. If you are interested, I invite you to read it. You can find it at http://moreblue.wordpress.com.
To learn more about depression, download this .pdf.
I’m not sure if everybody has one of “those” kinds of uncles, but I did. When I was but a wee lad, it never failed. Every time my family went over to my Grandma’s house for a family function, this particular uncle would tickle the snot out of me. Sometimes literally. It was powerful. That guy really knew how to tickle a kid. This was my Uncle Jim. Whenever there was any type of get together where I knew he would be there, I knew there would be no avoiding the inevitable. So rather than run away or try to hide somewhere, I knew it was best to just go right in and get it over with. So I’d stiffen up my body and to my best to just try to stay alive. There were times where I didn’t think I was going to make it, but against all odds, I survived. And it wasn’t just me. It was all of the nieces and nephews. Sometimes we would just form a line just like lambs before the slaughter.
So these days I wonder who’s the tickler in my family. It’s not me. I don’t really see my brothers engage in heavy duty tickle fests. Looking on my wife’s side there is perhaps one candidate. Uncle Brian is probably “that” uncle. I guess that makes sense. The two guys are pretty similar. Minus the smoking and drinking of course.
Yes, the Tickling Uncle Jim. Whom I later renamed the Tickling Uncle Jim Who Wouldn’t Quit Smoking. I now refer to him as my Uncle Jim who passed away way too young from lung disease.
Did any of you have one of those kinds of uncles? Not the smoking kind, but the tickling kind. Anyone in your family that your kids somewhat fear, but not really because they secretly love getting tickled to death?
HOW TO HAVE A YARD SALE
The family went driving around looking for yard sales this weekend. From what I could gather, here are some tips for having a yard sale according to the majority of the sellers we encountered.
1. THE YARD SALE SIGN.
You’re going to need people to find your house, so you’re going to need to put up signs around your neighborhood. Just grab a few scraps of paper you have lying around and write ‘yard sale’ on them. Don’t write it too big because you also need to write down your address, the time of your sale, what you are selling, etc. Since that is a lot to write, only use 2 or 3 sheets of paper. Don’t bother with arrows. Those are too confusing. Grab some scotch tape and stick your signs on a couple of telephone poles.
2. PILE EVERYTHING INTO HUGE BOXES.
Sorting and pricing your items just isn’t worth the effort. As long as give got some boxes on hand, the best thing to do is throw your stuff right in them. It’s better for the customer this way because it’s more like a treasure hunt.
3. HIDE THE GOOD STUFF.
If you are selling nice stuff like furniture, keep it in your house. Just stick a price list on your garage door. This will ensure that your good stuff will go to those who are really serious, not those people who just bounce around yard sales looking for used shoes and coasters.
4. HAVE LOTS OF OLD USED SHOES AND COASTERS ON HAND.
These are very high demand items. Those, and balled up strings of Christmas lights.
There you go! Remember to have fun! Don’t smile though. Smiling makes you customers feel more comfortable. Never do that.
How to REALLY have a yard sale
JUST NEED AN ICE-MAKER APP
The iPad is being marketed as magical and revolutionary. Well, I’ve had my grubby little hands on one for a few days now, and here are my thoughts.
A. It was kind of expensive. I do not point this out to boast or brag that I have lots of money. I don’t. I saved up some money and sold some stuff to be able to afford it. And that’s the part that’s important. How much money you’re willing to part with for an item may determine how you feel about, perceive, and interact with the item. What it is about the item that makes it worth so much? What contributes to your perceived value of an item. A possession. A thing. Will it be worth it if I only use this thing to read books on; something I could easily do for a lot cheaper. How many books will I need to read to make it worth the money? How much time must I spend each day using this item? What if I put it away for several months at a time and only use it sporadically for typing up to-do lists; something else that can be done very very inexpensively? What if it’s just a toy? There are so many psychological ramifications to consider. But in the end it’s just a thing, and if I can use it without the worry of needing to justify having it, then that’s all the better. You know, come to think of it, a lot of people spend a lot of money on fancy refrigerators. Don’t they keep your food just as cold as cheaper fridges? Hmmm. Priorities, I guess. But I digress.
B. It is a really cool gadget. I don’t know about magical. I’m sure that if I took this back to 1985 Bryce, he might use the term “magical.” Even 2000 Bryce might find the thing somewhat mystical.
C. It is in fact revolutionary. It’s not revolutionary because it’s from Apple. It’s not revolutionary because it’s shiny or pretty or even because it’s extraordinarily functional. It’s revolutionary because it’s the future. It’s Star Trek. It’s sci-fi. As I write this, the iPad has been out for only 4 months. It’s selling millions and millions of units. Many people, myself included, aren’t really sure what role it will play in their lives. It’s not really a computer, it’s not really a phone, but it’s definitely something. People see the future with it. People want to make it revolutionary. It’s not the device itself, it’s the attitude of iPad owners that spark the revolution. And this is just the beginning.
Something else I need to save up for.
Bryce: “Yes, I’d like one of the new iPhone 4′s please.”
Walmart: “We don’t have any iPhone 4′s in stock.”
Bryce: “OK, thanks.”
Bryce: “Do you have any iPhone 4′s?”
Spring: “No, but we have this Android. Won’t you please try this Android?”
Bryce: “Um, is there a waiting list for the iPhone 4?”
Spring: “Yes, but it’s like 4 weeks long. Look at this shiny Android!”
Bryce: “Sigh. Thanks anyway.”
Bryce: “Yes, do you have any of the new iPhones in stock?”
Simply Mac: “Oh, we carry everything that Mac makes except for the iPhone.”
Bryce: “Do you happen to have any iPhone 4′s in stock?”
Best Buy: “I’m sorry, we don’t.”
Bryce: “K, thanks.”
Universe: “You thought you were going to get a new iPhone? Psshh! You must be crazy!”
Bryce: “Well, it was worth a try.”
Universe: “Not really. Run along now.”
The Black Keys – Tighten Up
Here’s an Idea
“Planned obsolescence or built-in obsolescence in industrial design is a policy of deliberately planning or designing a product with a limited useful life, so it will become obsolete or nonfunctional after a certain period.”
Light bulbs burning out has got to be one of the more annoying annoyances of life. Especially when it’s one of your car headlights. Especially when you are just getting off of work at midnight and have to drive all the way home just knowing there’s going to be a cop or two just waiting to pull you over to inform you that you are driving a cyclops car which is some sort of criminal offense.
Aside from being pulled over, this happened to me the other night. It got me to thinking how great it would be if they invented a light bulb that never burned out. Of course, they never will. It is not in the best interest of the light bulb companies to do this. Just like it is really not in the best interest of Willy Wonka to invent an Everlasting Gobstopper. And if they did, they would have to charge hundreds of dollars for it. (Just like light bulbs, the longer they last, the more expensive they are.) So this contradicts what Mr. Wonka says in the movie about creating the Gobstopper for poor kids. In a real economy, that logic just won’t fly.
The exception to this rule is Apple. They are charging hundreds for iPhones, iPods, iwhatevers that will just be replaced in a year or so.
By the way, this post was typed on my disposable iPhone which I’m considering replacing soon. What a world.
Presidential Approval Tracker
I’ve been blogging on and off (mostly off) for at least 8 years now. I’ve often thought to myself, “Why do I do it?” I’m not exactly sure what the reason is. I think part of it is my love for technology and the Internet and being able to easily post stuff to the web for others to see just seems really cool to me. It gives me a chance to be a part of something bigger than myself. Part of it is leaving some sort of legacy of myself. Maybe my descendants in the future will find what I’ve written interesting. But that leads to thinking of reasons not to do it. For example, why spend so much time on something that nobody ever reads or notices or cares about. So I blog. On and off. Mostly off.
Well, I’m back on. For now.
Start your own blog for FREE at WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, Posterous, Penzu, and LiveJournal to name just a few.
I plan to return to blogging with a short post, a song, and a link each day. Should be fun!