Thursday, December 16, 2010

Gloom and Doom

Buying less this year!

Most who know me, realize that December is not my favorite month. In fact, on a scale of 1 to 12, with 1 being 'best' (April) and 12 being 'why bother', December would probably rank a 12 most years. One of thing things I particularly dislike about December are the endless news stories about the economy and Christmas and black friday and how the holiday shopping season is going to hell in a hand basket. Blahblahblah. It seems like every story is about how this retailers has done this particular markdown or is open these hours and that means this terrible thing. Or someone sneezed just a little funny and it caused them to drop something they were going to buy and now they won't buy it so the entire retail holiday shopping season has blown to hell. Each data point feels over analyzed and blown out of proportion.

Take for example the NPR story I heard this morning. The story was about what current gas prices (I guess they have gone up, I didn't notice) may mean for holiday shoppers. So they talked to some industry expert who was all freaked out. Then they interviewed one (YES, ONLY ONE) holiday shopper. She had just walked out of Costco and had a cart LOADED with toys, food etc. She went on for a while about how gas was $3.20 and how high that way. Then the interviewer asked her if that was going to effect her holiday shopping. She said, no, that she had saved money and that she was buying everything she had planned to buy for her kids. Then she said MAYBE she and her husband would buy less for each other. Maybe, mind you. And she did not sound very convinced. However, the interviewer was. He then concluded that the high gas prices were indeed effecting holiday shoppers. Implying by extension, heaven help the retailers.

Now, I'm not sure a woman who just walked about of Costco with an entire cart full o' crap saying she might buy less for her husband is really a sign that gas prices are hurting the economy. And maybe, just maybe, she (we) should be buying less crap! And maybe, just maybe, high gas prices are okay and they will make us drive less. Which just may be a good thing?

Or maybe I'm completely ignorant and unamerican!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Going Viral

Will this be the death of the insanely cute Otto and Daisy photos?

I have been doing a lot of research lately on Social Networking and its effects on business and marketing. People can and clearly do write about this at length, but the nuts and bolts is that for a business to be competitive in today's market place they need to be active on the internet. And not just actively selling, but they need to find ways to communicate and interact with their customers via the internet. Customers now want to be engaged by businesses. They want a business to be part of their social network.

And beyond that, businesses now need to be more attentive to their customers. In the past, if a customer was upset or received bad service, they might write a letter, make a phone call or tell a friend or two. Now, they can post a comment on facebook that ALL their 'friends' will see. Or they can go to the company's Facebook page and all the business's 'fans' can see the comment (and if you're someone like Starbuck that's over 18 MILLION (yes MILLION) people). Or perhaps the complainee has a blog. They can blog about the bad service. If it's a blog with many followers, it could get passed around. Or maybe it's a tweet, that gets retweeted adnauseum. Stephen Colbert had the most retweeted tweet of 2010 - 44,000 retweets! Something retweeted 44,000 times is probably seen by over 6,000,000 people.

What I have been learning, is that all of this will completely change the way we do business in the future. Businesses will no longer be able to push products or services out to customers. Instead, the customers will speak and businesses will now need to find them and listen and adapt to their desires, if they want to keep their business strong and profitable.

Let's view a micro example. A couple weeks ago, I became completely enamored with a bamboo 'white' board and blogged about it. So that company got free advertising amongst my 100s of (okay 2? 3?) blog readers. And, this is actually better than advertising, because my regular blog readers know me and my opinions and presumably trust them (right? I'm the bomb). So, they are more likely to take my advice than that of a regular ad.

Then, I posted a link of this blog on the bamboo board company's facebook page. Additionally, the company's owner gave a shout out about my blog on the FB page. So now, not only does the company's product get an endorsement that all the company's FB fans will see, but my blog gets a little what what, twice! Then, if anyone who is a fan of that company likes or comments on my link, then all their friends will see my blog and that product. So far, two likes (not including me and Otto) and one comment. The average FB user has 140 friends, the business has 646 fans, so, if you're doing the math that's over 1,000 people (1066 to be exact) potentially exposed to my blog and a positive review of that product. Going viral baby!

Woah Nellie! That's a lot of people exposed to my blog. I'd better work at making it not just something my mother would love. Oh, lord, can I only blog about pithy matters? What about Otto and Daisy? Oh, so much stress!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Deluge!

It has been raining in Seattle for 40 days and 40 nights! Okay, well not even remotely. Actually it was nice last week (nice not meaning it didn't rain, but meaning it didn't rain when I was out on my bike, walking the dog etc). But, it has been raining so hard for the last 18 hours or so, that it feels like it's been raining 40 days and 40 nights. Today I heard my first ever real radio emergency broadcast. You know they always have tests. You hear the loud scary blare blare blare, and then 'this is a test......'. I thought they only had real broadcasts for huge things like nuclear war, locusts or the plague. But it seems our deluge warrants an emergency broadcast. The radio is abuzz with talk of flooding and land slides. Daisy and Otto are getting into the excitement too. I caught them this morning whispering about what they are taking with them on the ark. I tried to explain that they are a. too old and B. STERILE, but they are still waiting by the phone for the call.

So, I have gotten caught up as well. Last night, I woke up in the middle of the night and heard a strange thump. So I had to lie awake for a while wondering what terrible tragedy had befallen my house and property. This morning, my hypochondriac self rushed outside with the dog and carefully scrutinized all the cracks in my retaining wall. Certainly, they must be bigger. As I'm mulling over this, I head up the street to walk the dog and whoa! The neighbors retaining wall is down.

Bigger? Bigger!!!

Pre blog (was there really life pre blog), I had a little tragedy involving my neighbors yard.
Their retaining wall proved quite ineffective as three of their trees were knocked down in a huge wind storm. The downfall of these three trees left me without electricity for 10 (yes, that's ten) days one very sad, cold winter!!! Since that wind storm I had become obsessed with their fourth tree, its impending fall from grace and my life coming to a cold standstill. In subsequent storms I have spent hours (well long minutes) watching out my window, waiting for their fourth tree to fall. The fourth tree is huge and leaning at angle against a cracked retaining wall, just waiting to take my electric lines down. But, I should use past tense here, a month or so ago THE TREE CAME DOWN. Actually, they had it taken down. After three years of waiting for nature to bring it down, the home owners finally had it removed!

The tree was right here (when this was upright)!

And clearly, just in time. If that tree hadn't come down a mere month ago, life would now be at an end. I would be without electricity. You would be without this blog (no electricity no blog). And my neighbors would be without a truck. So at the risk of this being premature, as some huge rain related tragedy may still occur in the next few hours, I would like to give a huge shout out of thanks to my neighbors, the universe, and anyone else who had anything to do with the tree removal.

Oh, and note to Noah, you can't have Otto and Daisy!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Canine vs Feline, part 2

In honor of Thanksgiving, I give you part two of the dog vs cat contest. Dogs are not winning this contest! Today Otto got all mopey because he is invited to a party this afternoon so I had to give him a bath. Post bath, he has insisted on going outside where he is sitting in the snow, wet, whining, and staring at the door. Daisy, well she isn't going to a party so she didn't have a bath but a. she doesn't need one b. staying home should make her extra mopey. But she is curled up in, cozy as a clam, the comforter and sleeping bag I have been sleeping in all week.

God my life sucks!

Mmmmmm, perfect, warm and cozy!

Me, I'm somewhere in the middle. My life is warm and cozy. There is really nothing wrong with it and have I a ton to be grateful for. And still, I do some sitting out in the cold whining. I think it's time to be more cat like - with a little crossfit and making sure I take those challenges thrown in.

Happy thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Smarter species?

I am 100% a dog person. Ask me any dog vs cat question and dogs will come out ahead just about every time. However, I think today the feline species would win a higher IQ battle.

Warmest spot in the house!
Perhaps you're wondering why her nose is burrowed into the gas range?
Well, it's essentially a vent of warm air!

35 degrees out! Nice day to lie in the 'sun'.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

It's Bamboo!!

A year or two ago an acquaintance of mine felt his life had no real meaning. So he sold all his stuff (all his stuff including house), packed his bags, bought a motorcycle and headed out to ride the motorcycle around the world. So far he hasn't made it out of South America. And while there, he has scouted out a couple organizations that help kids, kids in really desperate situations. He then formed a non profit and is now raising money to help out these groups (as well as volunteering his time).

Whew!! Me, I sit on my ass, obsessively check Facebook and watch stupid TV shows. However, I did have a spurt of do goodyness a few weeks ago when I attended a fundraiser/auction for his fine organization. I both gave money AND bid on some of the auction items. Mostly, I succeeded in merely driving up the prices for others, but I did win one thing, a bamboo 'white' board. Now this is just about the coolest thing ever. It is, yes, essentially a white board, but it's made out of bamboo so it's cooler and good for the environment (making me an even bigger do gooder)! It is now mounted and ready to house my to do list.

So now, I can sit on my ass, obsessively check Facebook while watching stupid TV shows and simultaneously, glance at my 'to do' list and see what I am NOT doing!

Oh, and if anyone is interested for doing good without getting off your and

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Living in the Moment

This morning as I was leaving my house to walk the dog (7 am or so), a taxi pulled up on my street. Turns out it was my neighbor returning from 'Girl's Night'. I, of course, was awake at 7 because I'd gone to bed super early, tired because I'd been waking up at 5.30 am all week to workout. I find it astounding that an adult could stay up all night voluntarily! And I'm not saying it's bad, it's just not a gene I got. I have zero ability to stay up late, let alone all night. This was true even when I was young and hip (was I really young AND hip?). Maybe in my next life....... Or maybe I already had that gene in a previous life and you get more conservative as you go?

And while we're on a woo woo subject like reincarnation, let's stay new age. Living in the moment. I seem to be thinking about it lately. Back when I took a lot of yoga, living in the moment was much discussed. Okay, perhaps not so much discussed, as 'lectured' to us by yoga teachers as we lay in corpse pose dreaming about what we would have for dinner, who our current crush was, or whatever else might be going on the second we were released from corpse pose to our life.

The theory is that in order to really enjoy life, you need to be fully present in everything you're doing. That you need to enjoy life - the process of life - as it's happening, both the good and the bad. And I completely agree. I spend lots of my time dredging up the past or worrying about/excited about the future. Sometimes I feel I spend so much time living in the past or anticipating my better future self, that I don't actually enjoy what's going on. And the thing is, there is only what's going on. You're always in the present. And if you don't live in the present, you're not really living your life.

And now we'll talk about my very favorite thing, crossfit. It's been a while since I've waxed poetically about crossfit. You all probably thought I fallen off the crossfit wagon.

Crossfit + Living in the Moment. One thing I love about crossfit is that it forces you to live in the present. I will ride my bike to workout all grouchy about something that happened, something someone did, having to go to work all day etc. Then I get to crossfit and all that is gone. For an hour there is NOTHING but exactly what I am doing. There is no way to think about anything else when you're trying to lift an extra heavy weight properly. Or when you're trying to push yourself to go just a little faster. Or when you're in so much pain you just want to collapse on the floor. Or, even when that beautiful moment comes, you yell 'time' and you actually do get to collapse on the floor. And it feels so good!

I always get a little surprised after crossfit. I get back on my bike and I remember what I was thinking about on the way there. Or I remember that I'm about to go sit at work all day and I realize that I have thought about none of that for the last hour. And I realize how refreshing it was (IS!) just to be!


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

All About Daisy

I'm cute!

One might forget such things from reading my blog, but there are two pets in my household. Otto, of course, is insanely cute and it's very hard to stop photoing and exhibiting him regularly (and clearly hard to not speak of him, as this is Daisy's blog and I have only discussed Otto so far). Moving on, Daisy, is the cat. She's been around much longer than Otto - 10 instead of 5 years. And she's pretty cute herself, in a cat kind of a way.

For some reason, lately, she's been upping the cute ante by squirreling herself in cupboards and drawers! I thought I should share so she doesn't feel left out.

">Mmmm, bleach and Bon Ami!

Comfy shirts!

Okay, enough with the camera already! I'll just go elsewhere.

Sunday, November 7, 2010


Mom, why are we taking pictures, let's walk!

Otto and my favorite walk - by the golf course near my house - just got a facelift. Well, the facelift has been about 3 years in the making, but it's nearing completion. And it's pretty cool, in that 21st century slightly pretentious park kind of way!

A pictorial, summary

Arty cement thingies with numbers and sayings on them. The sayings seem to be blurbs about the park. I haven't figured out the numbering yet.

Random crop circle pathways, probably laid down by aliens.

Arty seating areas and aliens.

Stonehenge rock piles and beautiful views.

Arty landscaping.

Playing (we avoid this area like the plague.)

AND, the walking path is exactly 1207 meters! Thank god.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

It's All Right Now

It seems this rather studly guy, aka Stanford quarterback, is ranked #1 in the country!

So, this is a blog that will be relevant to NONE of my happy readers, because I'm sure none of you care whatsoever about Stanford football. It's possible I don't care. But, since I did yesterday, and it's my blog here we go.

An old friend from college was in town to see the Stanford vs Huskies foootball game (Actually I guess that's Cardinal vs Huskies, we are the Cardinal and yes, that is Cardinal the color not cardinals, the bird - because we're uber intellectual. Our mascot is the tree of learning. I'm just sayin'.). I don't think I have seen Stanford play football since 1992, so it was probably time to check them out again. Back in the day, well anytime I have checked in in the last 20 some years, UW ALWAYS beats Stanford. But, despite that assumption, I jumped at the chance to go to a game.

So, game day rolls around and it happens to be POURING. Yes, all capitals. It was not drizzling, or raining, or pouring, but POURING all day long. And guess what, at Husky stadium it seems the visiting team gets very bad seats that have no cover. So, we sat in the pouring rain watching Stanford kick UWs butt. Hello, it seems in the last 20+ years, Stanford has gotten good and UW, not so good. 41 to 0. How you like them apples. Go Stanford GO!

And yes, it was 3 very very soggy, cold hours, but we won which made it just a little warmer, and as our 'theme' song goes, It's All Right Now. (I am pretty sure you have to be a Stanfordite to get that, sorry.)

Wet, but happy Stanford fans. (Don't they look happy?)

Millions of very cold high school cheerleaders provided half time entertainment.
Dancing to ABBA!!??

These weren't the final stats, but it was close to the end of the game.
First downs, UW 5 - Stanford 19, passing yards 44 to 192, running yards 10 to 218, total yards 54 to 410.

Friday, October 29, 2010

The Horror

You may all have noted and perhaps objected to, my occasional use of hyperbole. However, in this instance I am sure you will all agree any strong words and negative sentiments are entirely justified. So, I have two phones. I have my cell phone which would be the one I would use if I ever actually spoke on the phone and I have a 'land line'. (Actually, it's not a land line, it's a VOIP, but who cares.) I really don't need my home phone (VOIP), but I have not been able to cut the cord. It does come in handy if my phone ever gets run over by a bus (see post from last year) or there is some other phone emergency. And, I have this terror, that someone from my past will want to reach me and only have that old number (this does actually happen once every 3 years or so).

In reality, my the home phone doesn't actually get much use. About once a month community services for the blind calls me to tell me they have a truck in my area (and then don't actually stop by when I leave stuff out for them). About once every 3 months, someone calls with a survey or to sell me something obnoxious. And then, every October, it starts ringing off the hook, as every politician, referendum supporter etc calls me to 'get out my vote'.

This October it hasn't rung once, but I have slow realized something horrific has happened, my cell phone has started to ring. At first it was a few hang up calls. I called one back and it was some referendum supporter. Then, I got a few computer generated messages, 'famous' people trying to influence my vote. And worst of all, I have gotten a couple calls from Dino Rossi's campaign. (Uhm, really? I can't imagine any data floating around this universe (internet, voting registration, political groups etc) that would support a chance in hell of my voting for Dino Rossi.) And today, the coup de grace, Community Services for the Blind called my cell phone!!! Yes, I am now officially getting all solicitation calls on my cell phone.

This is a very sad day.

Oh, but don't despair, VOTE, early and often, but not for Rossi.

Saturday, October 23, 2010


So, before starting this blog I searched 'investigations' to see if I'd ever discussed my job before. I've mentioned it once here - It turns out to be a brilliant blog, though warning, it might be a bit of a tear jerker.

On to the current blog. Titles. So, I started a new job this week. I still work for the same company, but I have changed departments, areas of the company, jobs, and TITLES. For 10 years I have been an investigator, now I am an auditor. And with that change comes my current issue. I love(d) being an investigator. For years now, I have thought of myself as an 'investigator' and defined myself as an investigator. For me it is like being a lawyer or an architect, it's something more than just a job, it's part of who I am as person.

And it was fun being an investigator. Fun in terms of what one gets to do - search the internet, be nosy, find out what you can find out about someone, research crimes. It rocks. And it's a good conversation starter. If you're at a party and tell someone you're an investigator they are intrigued. They want to know more. And when you talk about it, they think it's cool (read 'you're cool'), dashing, exciting, should I say sexy.

Auditor? Not sexy. You tell someone you're an auditor and they get brief flashes of numbers and accounting, thick glasses and pocket protectors. Their eyes glaze over and suddenly they need another drink. Who wants to talk about auditing? It's already started, my first stranger asked me what I do yesterday, when I told him 'auditor' he didn't have much response. It was essentially a conversation brick wall. So, I quickly told him that before Monday I had been an investigator for 10 years. He got all excited by that, suddenly I was, well you know, sexier!

I think some pictures will illustrate nicely. Here's what pops up in google when you search 'investigator' and 'auditor'.

My new look!

The old me (hot!)!

Even when auditors are trying to dispel expectations that they are boring, dull and frumpy, they (we?) can't quite sex themselves up properly.

An auditor being sexy.

An investigator being sexy.

Hopefully my blog will stay sexy and won't be bogged down with my new auditor brain. If I start boring you, my loyal readers, sorry! At least Otto will always love me.

Monday, October 11, 2010

I'm Just Sayin'

These two wall posts were juxtaposed on my facebook page today. I thought it quite fitting. (No these two people do not know each other. Only a very select group --about two of us--would have seen both these posts.) But, really, all of Carla's friends might have appreciated the sentiment! Actually, Mark's comment came a minute or so before Carla's, almost as if he were anticipating someone might be about to cross a boundary.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Sometimes things are that good!

As an antidote to my previous post, I will now mention that sometimes you assume things are too good to be true, and it turns out they are that good.

Allow me to illustrate with a little story. About 5 years ago I bought one of those inflatable double beds to use when I have company (I know, luxurious accommodations!). I bought it at a garage sale and it came with this annoying foot pump. For 5 years I have been blowing that thing up with the foot pump and it SUCKS. The nozzle doesn't fit properly and keeps slipping. Invariably it slips out at least once, I lose all the air in the mattress and have to start the process over nearly from scratch. It takes forever and it's exhausting. It involves many many swear words and usually sends the cat and dog running in terror!

Today, I knew I would have to do this when I got home and I've been dreading it. Then, when I pulled out the mattress I looked for the first time (in 5 years) at this little plastic funnel thing that was in the bag. I tried to attach it to the mattress somehow, thinking that this would make the pump attachment fit better. That didn't work at all, but it made me remember that some kind of battery pack had come with the mattress. So I dug around in the bag and found this small battery operated pump. I had never used it, never even tried it, assuming it was broken or the batteries were dead or something. Anyhow, I thought, hmmm, maybe I should go buy new batteries. Before jumping in the car, I plugged the little plastic funnel into the battery pack and the next thing I know, the battery pack is blowing out air!!!!!!!! Hello!!!! I attached the pack to the mattress. Cooled my heels for about 5 minutes and the mattress was full. FIVE YEARS OF HELL gone.


Sunday, October 3, 2010

My Cloud

This picture is in my cloud.

If you've been looking at the sky you may have noticed one more cloud. Well, at least in Seattle (from what I understand the rest of the country may be cloud free). But us, lots of clouds. And now, one more.

My last blog detailed the events of the week. The events that were necessitated by purchasing a new phone. It made me consider all the data I use daily and how fragile it is. A system upgrade, a computer crash, or a bus running over my phone and I could lose it all. So now, not only do I have everything backed up on an external hard drive, but I also have my very own cloud. I can keep anything in my cloud and access it from any where at any time. Of course, at the moment I only have this stupid picture, but I am sure momentarily my cloud will be filled with vital data!

And then it will get hacked.

I'll put this in my cloud too, it will be important to access in an emergency.


I guess I could entitle this blog, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!" (hence the yes).

In my last blog I was very excited about the possibility of getting a new iphone 4 virtually free. And really, who wouldn't be. I did a bunch of research and found out who would give me the most for my old phone (Radio Shack, if you can imagine). So, first I had to put my name on the list at Radio Shack because I guess when they get a new shipment in, they sell them right away. So, a couple weeks later, when I finally got the call, I rushed downtown on a Saturday to get my new phone.

It all started out well. They were happy to help me, they wanted to give me $197 for my old phone, they assured me if my old phone had been synced (sunk?) with my computer I could just plug in and get all that info on my new phone, we deleted all the data off the phone and started the process. At the very end, as I'm signing the bill, it turns out the new iphone is $400 not $200. The nice sales associate called ATT for me and it turns out that an early renewal is $200 off not $200. At this point everything is done, my old phone is empty and I threw caution to the winds and said okay.
$250 + 1 hour

So, glowing with the purchase of my new phone, I head home. Immediately, I run to my computer plug in the phone AND................ boom, hit the wall. So, it turns out that iphone 4 is not compatible with the 'old' mac operating system. So in order to sync my phone or to ever plug my phone into my computer and save the data, I need to upgrade my entire operating system. Phone call to Apple to buy Leopard.

A week and two days later the disc containing the new operating system arrives in the mail. I'm ready to slip it in and go. And then I listen to the niggling something in back of my brain that says 'new operating system = new computer' and I do some googling. Yes, I will lose ALL data on my computer. So I spend 5 hours that night researching how to back up data. After some hits and some misses I finally decide on a backup system called superduper (how could you pass that up) and try to back my computer up to various places, none of which are large enough. In a fit of frustration I ALMOST just installed the damn operating system, but I talked myself down and saved the life of my data.
$29 + 5 hours

The next day I enlisted the aid of a cautious (ie regularly backing up data kind of a guy) mac owning friend, and we headed off at lunch to buy an external hard drive. Well, of course, the MAC one was out of stock, but now I knew what I needed. So that evening I went to two more stores couldn't find a MAC only drive but finally found a sales associate who would actually help me and got a hard drive that was not MAC compatible, but left with semi decent instructions on what to do. That night was another 5-6 hours of figuring out how to reconfigure hard drives, downloading data, uploading a new operating system........
$90 + 5 - 6 -7 hours?

The previous night I'd fallen asleep while all the above was happening, so the next day I flew home from work, excited by my new operating system and the possibility of actually syncing my now 1.5 week old still naked phone (no contacts, no calendars, no apps etc). That night I learned all about the MAC, transferring data, uploading old stuff, some of it involved google searching to figure out how to do things that weren't working. I almost lost every contact but was able to pull through in the last minute. I did lose my calendar and all the pictures on my phone.
4 hours + some lost hair and teeth enamel from too much pulling and gnashing.

Happy ending? $500 and countless hours and swear words later, my free phone wasn't so free! Would I do it again? I'm certainly older and wise and, I know MUCH more about my computer and data saving that I did two weeks ago.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Too good to be true?

Last week, just on a whim, I decided to swing by the AT&T store and see how much it would cost me to switch over to the new iphone 4G. Now, you all will remember that it was not so long ago that I was super excited to buy my 3G iphone. And don't get me wrong, I love my phone. But I thought it couldn't hurt to ask and I wasn't really expecting much. Well, it turns out the worlds of Apple and AT&T are happy to encourage consumption, perhaps even over consumption. On 9/12, exactly 9 months after purchasing my last phone, I can get a discount on a newer fancier iphone - $200 bucks, an $18 upgrade fee, and renewing my two year contract will get me a new iphone 4G.


Quickly I dismissed such grandiose notions. Who needs a new phone when you have a perfectly serviceable old phone that you love? That's just wasteful.

Then today, I started thinking ,what if someone wants to buy my old (new) phone and reuse it? Well, it turns out plenty of people would be happy to buy my old phone. First of all, let's talk details. When I bought my iphone I was very worried that I would drop and break it. I do that. So I bought a fancy case and a plastic screen cover jobby for the phone. So, even though I am not someone who takes care of possessions properly, my phone has been essentially shrink wrapped for 9 months. And is consequently in beautiful condition! In addition, I usually throw away packaging, BUT, the iphone box is so stinkin' cute, I kept it and all the paperwork. So, my phone is essentially new with all the wrapping.

And that means that not only do people want to buy my phone, they want to pay a bunch of money for it. First, I found a company called gazelle. They'll pay $147 for my phone and send me a box to ship it to them for free. Then I did some more looking, and it appears maybe, possibly, that Radio Shack will pay $196 for my phone!!!!! In case you're getting lost on the math that's $4 for the phone, $18 for the upgrade fee, and maybe some tax. Essentially a FREE PHONE!

And that my friends is what you call a win (for me), win (for radio shack), win (for the person who gets my cute little phone) situation! Yippee

Friday, August 20, 2010

The scariest place in Seattle

A couple times per week I drive to crossfit. I used to take I5, but since you really never know what you're going to get with I5 traffic, now a days I take highway 99. I'm sure most of you know, but 99 is a double decker highway, with the north bound lanes on top of the south bound lanes. The south bound lanes sketch me out. Back in the day (1989?), when San Fran had a big earthquake a very similar highway collapsed, wreaking all kinds of havoc (as you can well imagine). I think it would be okay to be on the top part of a collapsing freeway, but underneath. Well, I supposed a picture is worth 1000 words.

Yeah, my point exactly.

Being under one of those collapsed sections would SUCK! And for the most part, I avoid going South.

But north bound, has its own terror, and this I have to experience on a weekly basis. The Battery Street Tunnel!!! Imagine being in the tunnel if an earthquake hit. And the worst part is that I'm usually driving in rush hour traffic. AND SOMETIMES I HAVE TO STOP IN THE TUNNEL. The thought makes me super claustrophobic. When I'm stopped in the tunnel (as I was yesterday) I start working on my escape route - how I would get Otto and I out safely. But, I think my chances may not be too great.

Don't stop in the tunnel!

Monday, August 16, 2010

North Cascades Ride 2010 Photo Montage

Very hot tired riders!

Cute couples

Even cuter kids

Beer drinking, beer pong playing 20 year olds (They went through over two packs of 24 beers over the course of the two nights.)

And the 30 something who took them on at beer pong and WON (no word yet on whether he made it up the mountain the next day).
New socks!
The hot air balloon that provided an alarm clock for anyone thinking of sleeping past 7am.
And the very very well behaved hound that made his first trip ever!