• We’re at the “meh, just ask around and see what people tell you” stage of pandemic information

    Instead, experts recommend using other ways to stay informed of your community’s Covid-19 risks: Check local news and tap into your social networks.

    Omicron BA.5 Surge: 5 Ways to Stay Safe – The New York Times

    Sigh. Am I the only one who finds this very disappointing?

    No comments on We’re at the “meh, just ask around and see what people tell you” stage of pandemic information

  • Chris Pine in a Gelatinous Cube

    Watch out, it’s a Gelatinous Cube! This 6-inch-scale collectible is compatible with D&D 6-Inch figures that can be posed out inside with the “invisible” stand. It includes 14 snap-in accessories to add to the scene. This cubic collector figure will probably look cool in your display, looking menacingly over your other Golden Archive figures. Figures each sold separately. Subject to availability.

    Dungeons & Dragons Golden Archive Gelatinous Cube – Hasbro Pulse

    What a world we live in! You can preorder Chris Pine in a gelatinous cube! I mean, why wouldn’t you?

    Though I have to say as much as I love the illustration on the box the actual toy looks a little underwhelming.

    No comments on Chris Pine in a Gelatinous Cube

  • Update: My work Wawa is open!

    I other day I whined about changes to my morning going to the office routine, including the fact that my work Wawa was closed for remodeling.

    It is open again! And it looks exactly as it did pre-remodel. I was expecting some strange new Wawa of the future, but I admit I was glad to see those familiar fixtures and layout.

    No comments on Update: My work Wawa is open!

  • Routines

    If I weren’t so boring I’d be worried about how easy it would be to stalk me.

    Routines – I have them. I follow them. I hardly ever change them.

    The world, though, seems to feel free to change my routines whenever the heck it wants!

    I’m lucky to have a job that I can do, for the most part, from home. However, I do go into the office at least once a week (sometimes more). That means every Monday I initiate my “go to work” routine:

    1. Wake up.
    2. Take a shower.
    3. Get dressed.
    4. Change the boys/help Marisa change the boys.
    5. Help with the boys’ breakfast.
    6. Eat my breakfast.
    7. Take the trolley to the school’s COVID testing site.
    8. Get a COVID test.
    9. Go to Wawa and buy a gigantic soda.
    10. Walk to the office.

    I take the same route and do the same things.

    Now, I haven’t been able to take the trolley at all due to Septa’s Tunnel Blitz (they shutdown the tunnel and clean it up, which is nice). That’s fine, I just take the bus. So:

    1. Wake up.
    2. Take a shower.
    3. Get dressed.
    4. Change the boys/help Marisa change the boys.
    5. Help with the boys’ breakfast.
    6. Eat my breakfast.
    7. Take the trolley to the school’s COVID testing site. Take the bus to campus.
    8. Walk across campus to the school’s COVID testing site.
    9. Get a COVID test.
    10. Go to Wawa and buy a gigantic soda.
    11. Walk to the office.

    Then last week I did numbers 1 – 9 only to find that my Wawa was closed for remodeling. Ok, fine.

    1. Wake up.
    2. Take a shower.
    3. Get dressed.
    4. Change the boys/help Marisa change the boys.
    5. Help with the boys’ breakfast.
    6. Eat my breakfast.
    7. Take the trolley to the school’s COVID testing site. Take the bus to campus.
    8. Walk across campus to the school’s COVID testing site.
    9. Get a COVID test.
    10. Go to Wawa and buy a gigantic soda. Walk to the supermarket across the street from my office.
    11. Buy a 1.5 liter of Diet Pepsi (which is cheaper than the smaller sizes!).
    12. Walk to the office.

    Now, that brings us to today. You’ll note it is Monday. If you aren’t reading this today then let it be known that it was Monday when I wrote this. I got off the bus and walked across campus only to find that the COVID testing site is closed Monday, Wednesday, and Friday of this week. FINE.

    1. Wake up.
    2. Take a shower.
    3. Get dressed.
    4. Change the boys/help Marisa change the boys.
    5. Help with the boys’ breakfast.
    6. Eat my breakfast.
    7. Take the trolley to the school’s COVID testing site. Take the bus to campus.
    8. Walk across campus to the school’s COVID CLOSED testing site.
    9. Get a COVID test. Try to open the door and find it locked.
    10. Read the posted hours and check watch.
    11. Do step 10 again to confirm the site should be open.
    12. Back up a few steps.
    13. Take out my phone and visit the COVID website. Find out the site is closed 3 days this week due to construction.
    14. Put phone away and give one last rueful look at the door of the testing site.
    15. Go to Wawa and buy a gigantic soda. Walk to the supermarket across the street from my office.
    16. Buy Look for a 1.5 liter of Diet Pepsi (which is cheaper than the smaller sizes!) only to find they are sold out.
    17. Walk around the store looking for a small Diet Pepsi.
    18. Find a small Diet Coke.
    19. Pay $1 more for the small Diet Coke than you would for 1.5 liters of Diet Pepsi and think that you should have bought a 2 liter but didn’t want to be the guy at the office with 2 liters of soda on his desk which seems like a bit much when it isn’t that much more than 1.5 liters.
    20. Walk to the office.
    No comments on Routines

  • Sweet, bulging iPhone! Get thee to an Apple Store

    We didn’t buy the studio apartment next to us for the closet it included, but the closet was a nice touch. It was clearly designed by someone more interested in their wardrobe than I, but I have put it to good use.

    I must admit that there are some drawers which remain empty, and one I didn’t know what to do with. The skinny drawer seen here:

    The face of drawers.

    Now, I’m sure there’s a particular purpose for this drawer but what it is remains a mystery to me.

    Worry not, for I have put it to good use by storing my technological relics:

    A Kindle or two.

    I had reason to open this drawer the other day to retrieve all my Kindles in order to convince my mother in law that we could spare one (after I piled them all on the table she got the idea).

    Whilst I was gathering my Kindles I noticed one of my old iPhones doing that which you never want to see a gadget doing: having its battery bulging in such a manner in which the device itself nearly split in two.

    I quickly popped it into a jar and Googled what the heck to do with this dangerous thing. The internet agreed that this was something that should be disposed of at once… but rather divided upon how one should do that.

    It was late, so I decided to call Apple in the morning and see if I could just drop it off at the nearby Apple Store and be done with it.

    Come next morning, I called Apple. The person on the phone was very nice, but they couldn’t guarantee that the store would dispose of my phone.

    I figured I might as well risk it and popped the bulging battery-ed iPhone into a paper bag (offering not much protection) and walked to the Apple Store.

    Now, I am not a big fan of the Apple Store but this was my best experience there ever. I walked in, told the first employee I saw I had a phone to recycle. He pointed me to the woman standing next time him. I walked over to her and told her I wanted to recycle a phone. She started asking me some routine questions as I pulled out the iPhone. I told her, “The only issue is that the battery is swelling.”

    She took one look, said, “Put that back in the bag, it is scary. The people in the back will dispose of it safely.” I asked if I needed to do anything else and she said no.

    I left the phone, with its ever expanding battery, on one of the Apple Store’s very expensive tables and went on my way.

    Total time in the store: 3 minutes.

    Good job, Apple!

    No comments on Sweet, bulging iPhone! Get thee to an Apple Store

  • Be there while being behind the camera

    Was I there for the photo, or for the adventure? We look at the photo as the goal, because it’s the thing we get to share. The adventure is our own, and it’s fleeting. And yet it’s the adventure I’ll remember, the morning’s promise of possibility even when I’d not lived up to my own photographic expectations. And I had to acknowledge that I was strolling empty streets in Rome, not sitting at my desk at home, with an espresso and a cornetto guaranteed before I arrived back at my hotel. And that’s still a good day.

    Una Mattinata Frustrante a Roma – Jeff Carlson | Never Enough Coffee Creations

    A good reminder for us all, from a talented photographer (and a nice guy!).

    No comments on Be there while being behind the camera

  • #freeRowdy

    Soon Rowdy herself was on the receiving end of a chase, as her getaway set off a massive search involving airport and Lufthansa personnel, construction workers, and animal welfare advocates, as well as the use of wildlife cameras and safe-release traps.

    Despite numerous sightings, Rowdy always eluded her pursuers — but now, a little calm has been restored.

    Cat on the lam: Pet caught after weeks on the run at airport | AP News

    No comments on #freeRowdy

  • LEGO Icons 10305: Lion Knights’ Castle : The Brink Brothers Review

    LEGO Icons 10305 Lion Knights’ Castle is a massive, 4514 piece love letter to the theme that will be available to VIPs on August 3rd (and everyone on August 8th) for  US $399.99 | CAN $499.99 | UK £344.99.  This set is SO massive, in fact, that we had to split our our review of the twenty two included minifigures into “part two”. For starters, though, we take a very close look at the surprises and secrets in the Lion Knights’ Castle itself. Are you ready for a trip down memory lane?

    LEGO Icons 10305: Lion Knights’ Castle : Part One – The Castle [Review] – The Brothers Brick | The Brothers Brick

    I keep repeating “I don’t need a $400 LEGO set” to myself.

    No comments on LEGO Icons 10305: Lion Knights’ Castle : The Brink Brothers Review

  • Anker 735 Charger

    I’ve been meaning to blog about the Anker 735 Charger for a little while now. Amazon is having a little sale on it, and if you own a MacBook, iPhone, or a device that charges using USB-A you should think about getting one!

    It is far smaller than Apple’s chargers, and easier to pack if you ask me. Here it is stacked on a MacBook Air and MacBook Pro 13 inch charger:

    It does stick out a little more than one might like in a wall outlet, but it is stable (I fear it’ll fall out but I’ve used it countless times and it never has).

    My favorite charger, ever!

    No comments on Anker 735 Charger