Archive for November, 2009

The 25 Funniest Vintage Tech Ads

November 14, 2009

Double-entendre at its finest.

Breaking the Soda Habit – Progress Report (1 month)

November 10, 2009

Progress: 99% Soda-free, Reduced caffeine to between 300-400 mg/day, and off the aspartame, moved to Splenda.

I really am over it!  Granted, I’m sure I could easily fall back into the habit.  But for once, I’m in control.  I’ve had exactly three sodas during this first month.  One in order to avoid a caffeine headache, one to test whether or not I really enjoyed DMD (Diet Mountain Dew) (turns out I didn’t… I prefer Diet Coke again which is a whole other story), and one just for the hell of it to tease myself that I’m in control.

I used to have no control.  I’d go to the Quik Trip near my house on a mission.  A DMD quest.  It was a quest because half of the trips weren’t so quick since I often rendered their shelves empty and would have to search two and sometimes three stores, grocery and convenient store alike, in search of my elixir of life!

One month in, though, I feel no urge.  I do, however, still feel an urge when I walk into a gas station.  The thought of a nice, cold 20 ounce is nice.  But I have successfully opted for water each time.  These are my only difficult times.  And each time, my choice to avoid the soda is like winning a small battle with myself.   I used to guzzle a little over a gallon of soda per day.  Now I guzzle water with a splash of tea, Arizona Diet Green Tea to be exact.  Sometimes the Blueberry tea is nice.  The recipe is 3/4 water, 1/4 tea.  A much better concoction for my body…

With the soda addiction under control (seeminly), the caffeine addiction is next.  I am a weener.  I can’t get off the sauce cold turkey, so I ween.  A little less caffeine each week.  It used to be I’d drink a cup of coffee during the day and a cup at night.  I don’t dislike the ritual of coffee since it’s enjoyable.  But I just don’t want the maintain a dependency on caffeine.  I haven’t had much problems with headaches yet, but I’ve been close.  But at the same time, I still don’t feel the effects of caffeine like most people seem to.  That is, I can still drink a cup of coffee and fall right asleep.

Finally, the issue of weight.  I thought by getting rid of aspartame in my diet that I would see some shedding of the pounds.  Not so in my case.  I have maintained my weight, however unfortunate that is since I was really looking to lose some pounds.  Instead, weight loss will have to come the traditional way… by watching what goes in.  If you have any interest in a good system for this, check out the Hacker’s Diet.  Lots of common sense information there, but geekier than the rest of the fad diets out there.

So this was the one-month mark.  See ya next month!


$9 French Onion Soup!

November 7, 2009

I’m sorry, but for $9 bucks, I expect more than this!  I don’t give a damn if it’s the Ritz.
I expect first rate soup.  Usually I’d get soup AND a sandwich for that.

My Mamma made the best french onion soup.  It comes to about $2 / bowl.

All three of us ate for about $11. 




Time for a Piano Blog???

November 3, 2009

I have been playing my piano a good bit lately and have happened upon some really great techniques that have pushed my playing better than ever before.  Obviously, the practice helps.  But the style of practice, I believe, has helped even more.

So I have been searching for good piano blogs on the ‘net and have found very very few that are worth anyone’s time.  So I’m wondering if it’s time that I begin my own Piano Blog.  I’ll have to do some thinking on it.  But I can see it as being valuable to me, certainly, but also to others.  In the end, though, it’s not like I’m planning to write tutorials or anything.  I just thought it’d be neat to take the same approach as Julie and Julia, but instead of working my way through a cookbook, I’d be working my way through music and learning since the advent of the pianoforte.

One blog post in particular on returning to Bach resonated with me completely.  It is just so utterly humbling that we are taught to think of these pieces as for children these days.  But while this may be the case when speaking of technique, it certainly does not equate to being elementary in composition by any means.  And I find myself ready to absorb all I can from Bach, now that I’m “more mature.”

So, is it a good idea to spin off yet another blog?  I’m not sure.  But it will be good for my soul, and maybe give me more reason to stay focused on my true musical goals rather than bumbling around aimlessly as I’ve done up until now, my 37th year…