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It's good to be prepared

November 23rd, 2010 at 08:36 pm

This morning, as I got into the car to leave for work, I noticed that my glasses was feeling particularly loose. I took it off to examine it, and realized that a screw was missing and one of the lenses was about to fall out.

I put it down on the passenger seat, grabbed my spare pair out of the glove compartment, put it on, and continued on to work.

Sounds rather uneventful, right? Right. And that was exactly the point. Years ago, I had foreseen how I could be screwed without a working pair of glasses. So, when I had an afternoon free, I got myself an eye exam and paid for an extra pair of glasses. And to make sure that I would always have access to it, I stored it the car, where it stayed for all these years... until today.

I like being prepared, and it's always nice when something you spent time and money on actually pays off.

Now to look for the missing screw when I get home.

Cooling down

October 5th, 2010 at 12:28 pm

Wow, wasn't it just a day or two ago that the temperature was still in the 90s? Not that I'm complaining though. I MUCH prefer the cooler weather. I just didn't think it would drop so suddenly.

Last night, it was cool enough for me to break out my winter pajamas. And even then, it was still cold enough that I woke up again and had to get the winter blanket.

I had forgotten how much of a light sleeper I really am. I remember just how difficult it was for me to get it.

Anyways, I am already thinking about how to get through this winter. Something more effective than last winter. I am not sure what though, but I'm going to look into it.

Canceled DSL

September 21st, 2010 at 03:27 pm

I've been dragging my lazy feet canceling my home DSL, but partly because I wanted to make sure this 4G hot spot idea I've blogged about was going to work.

Good news! So far so good. Luckily, my coverage at home is OK, even if the speed is not as fast or reliable as DSL. And anyway, it's also $10 a month cheaper.

On the go, my coverage is, well, honestly it's spotty. However, the fact that I can even get 4G internet on the go is just gravy, and I am also doing it without having a cellphone bill.

And with that, I finally canceled my home DSL. I love lowering my monthly bills!

Internet switch

September 13th, 2010 at 02:47 pm

In a typical household, it's normal to have a landline phone, cellphones, cable, and internet.

For some time now, I've managed to consolidate all of my phone needs into one Tracfone, for an average of about $5 a month. I've been very happy with that, and for some time now, I've been looking for ways to do the same with my internet.

Unfortunately, while I rarely use a phone at all, I am a complete internet junkie. In my own defense however, I do not have cable or even Netflix. So, my only source of entertainment centers around being online somehow.

Recently, I've been experimenting with a mobile 4G hot spot device from clear.com. It is unlimited 4G data for $40 a month, my home and most areas near work have coverage, and the speeds can rival my DSL, which I am currently paying $50 a month. Best of all, because the device is portable, it means that my iPod Touch has data access similar to an iPhone, except with 4G speeds!

In other words, for the price of shaving $10 a month off my internet bill, I also gain mobility with it! A typical iPhone alone would cost a minimum of about $55 a month. Home broadband would be a separate bill. However, with this one device, I am able to do it all for just $40 a month! Combined with the Tracfone, all of my household bills are only $45 a month (not including gas, electric, and water bills).

There is one minor downside: I now carry three devices on my belt: The cellphone, iPod Touch, and now, the hot spot device. I feel like Batman. Big Grin

Cooking for Dummies

August 17th, 2010 at 05:41 pm

When it comes to cooking, I think I'm a bit of a quack. But that isn't to say this awkward little duckling does not dream of being a culinary swan some day. Ah, but every great adventure starts with a single waddle, and it may look something like this LifeHacker article here.

Most of you may have yawned at the article for its remedial, Hooked-on-Phonics-like content, but to me, it's still something of a revelation. For example, did you know you can also cook things other than rice in a rice cooker? Actually, I knew that too because I've seen my mom do it with hers, but it never occurred to me that perhaps I could do that too! It was as though it's some kind of Asian dark arts that I am not suppose to speak of or fathom.

Well, I'm pumped! And seriously, doesn't that picture look delicious?



By the way, does anyone use a rice cooker for their cooking? Does anyone know what's the difference between the rice cooker and the crock pot? Also, since I already have a crock pot, is it worth buying a rice cooker or is that redundant?

Wisdom teeth

August 16th, 2010 at 06:37 pm

Hey gang, I need some opinions on this if you know anything about this subject.

As you can imagine, my wisdom teeth are impacted? I think that's the term. It looks like the erupted one in the pictures below, except that it's has also completely surfaced through the gums.



Anyways, the dentist is saying that I need to get them out sooner rather than later, but it doesn't have to be right away. It could be a 5 year project if I want.

Now, another thing about my teeth is that I've already had a molar removed a while back, so there is now a gap in my lower jaw. I know that if I were to leave them alone, they would slowly slide out and mis-align, but with a gap there, at least the teeth shouldn't crowd too much and cause pain? I don't know.

What I do know is that I don't think I really care THAT much about having perfect teeth. I just want my teeth to not hurt, and then I don't want to over-pay for any unnecessary dental work.

So, my question is, do any of you know if this is truly necessary, or is this something that the dentist is telling me to help pay for his boat?

My kingdom for a toilet!

August 12th, 2010 at 08:12 pm

I was perusing vandwellers.org earlier. The website has a gaudy color scheme that makes it hard to read, but I have to tell you, the content there is fascinating nonetheless.

Reading it, it occurred to me that the only technical obstacle between temporary and permanent living appears to be... a toilet! Everything else, you can find a solution around it.

There are a couple of options available, but none of them are very good:

For one, you can install RV toilets, but you still have to dispose of your own "dark water".

The alternative is to have access to public restroom facilities somehow, like using the bathroom at work, at a park, or having a gym membership. I think this is the most realistic, though imagine having to drive to the gym every time you need to take a dump.

Lastly, you can just "rough it" in the woods somewhere... but that's most likely illegal. Big Grin

Anyways, that's my crazy observation for the day. That in the end, the majority of our housing cost actually goes into buying a connection to the municipal sewer system. Otherwise, a huge world of interesting and inexpensive alternative dwelling (not just RVs) open up to you.