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A Flying Machine for the Home Gym

A Flying Machine for the Home Gym

I’ve always wanted to fly of my own volition. When I was young, I tried to make a hang glider to achieve this goal. I had dreams of flying that were so intense that I’d wake up with headaches from concentrating on levitation. It was truly ingrained into my subconscious. I’ve been waiting for a […]


Bucket List: The Napkin Number

Bucket List: The Napkin Number

There’s something I’ve only seen in movies that I’ve always wanted to try, and on Friday I checked it off my bucket list. The movie trope is when one person writes a number (typically a salary offer or some sum of money in exchange for a service) on a napkin, places it face-down on the […]


Making Out in Paris

Making Out in Paris

Lately I’ve been turning to the zany questions on OkCupid for blog fodder from time to time. Today is one of those times. The question is: Which of these is the more romantic activity: kissing in Paris OR kissing in a tent in the woods? I’ve been to Paris, but I didn’t have the good fortunate […]


The Best Grocery Store Clerk Ever

The Best Grocery Store Clerk Ever

Yesterday I wrote about a fictional (likely not fictional) story about really poor customer service. However, the universe reminded me today about the importance of balancing the bad with the good, as I had a truly wonderful experience at the grocery store. After loading up my cart, I was rolling past the check-out lanes–some open, […]


The Mystery of Sterilization

The Mystery of Sterilization

The New York Times recently posted a fascinating series of charts showing the percentage of women who will have an unplanned pregnancy over a 10-year period of “typical use” of contraceptives. The results were really surprising to me. Here are a few key examples: birth-control pill: 61% Depo-Provera: 46% condom (male): 86% Those numbers seem […]


What Makes You a Nerd?

What Makes You a Nerd?

This evening I had the pleasure of appearing as a guest on a podcast called Nerds on Tap. It was much longer than other podcast chats I’ve done, but I had a great time with Jim, Chris, and Joseph. The podcast isn’t live yet. I was informed before the podcast that I would be asked […]


Walter’s 4th or 8th-ish Birthday

Walter's 4th or 8th-ish Birthday

For some reason when I got Walter as a pet for Biddy a few years ago, I thought he was about a year old. I arbitrarily picked a birthday for him (today), and I’ve celebrated it as such ever since. Thus by my calendar, Walter turns 4 today. However, a trip to the vet last […]


A Real-Life Love Potion

A Real-Life Love Potion

There’s a somewhat common fairytale trope involving a creepy idea: One character wants another character to fall in love with them, so they create a love potion. Usually the potion is applied at the wrong time and hilarity ensues. As it turns out, there is a real-life equivalent to a fantasy love potion. No, it […]


Serial, Post-Hype

Serial, Post-Hype

A few months ago, my pop-culture savvy friend Bryce asked me if I had been listening to the Serial podcast. Nope, I said. Never heard of it. Bryce couldn’t believe it. Apparently I was missing out on the most downloaded podcast ever, a cultural phenomenon. Over a 12-week period, Serial was downloaded by millions of […]


A Revealing Video About Domestic Abuse and Sexual Harassment

A Revealing Video About Domestic Abuse and Sexual Harassment

Recently I saw an intriguing headline on Facebook from Fast Company: “This Video Shows What Happens When Little Boys Are Asked to Slap a Girl” The article shares a video PSA from Italy that attempts to make a statement about domestic violence. Without even watching the video, you kind of know what’s coming–these boys are […]


Pet Please #119: When You Remember a Friend’s Preferred Physical Greeting

Pet Please #119: When You Remember a Friend's Preferred Physical Greeting

A few weeks ago, I was at a meetup when a friend came over to say hi. I stood up and extended my hand, and at the same time he opened his arms into hug formation. Of course hug trumps handshake, and handshake looks a little silly when a hug is being offered. A week […]


UVA and the Dangers of Tradition

UVA and the Dangers of Tradition

When I was growing up in suburban Virginia, I adored UVA (the University of Virginia). I spent part of 4 summers at a summer camp on UVA’s campus, and I cherish those memories of four-square, frisbee, and girls in the midst of the austere architecture of Thomas Jefferson. During those summers and the years that […]


Your Halloween Costume

Your Halloween Costume

Halloween is not a holiday I get particularly excited about, but a few years ago I bought a “costume” that I intend to continue to milk as long as The Hunger Games is in the public eye. Below is the costume I’ll be wearing tomorrow. I hope it’s not cold in District 11. Katniss isn’t included, […]


The Batmobile Runs on Electricity

The Batmobile Runs on Electricity

A few days ago I read about Tesla’s new car, the P85D. I was fairly impressed by a lot of the details until I got to a certain paragraph, at which point my brain exploded: But, Musk said, if you fall asleep while driving, the car should be able to get you home safely. If […]


Starbucks and Habitual Purchases

Starbucks and Habitual Purchases

A few days ago I had a meeting at a Starbucks. I was kind of excited about this because I hardly ever go to Starbucks. It’s probably been over a year since I’ve been there, but I enjoy their mocha frappacinos (I don’t drink coffee unless it’s in some type of frozen sugary form). Not […]


Trapped in a Room: A Gaming Experience

Trapped in a Room: A Gaming Experience

This past Friday, I was locked in a strange room with 3 friends and 4 strangers. Our cell phones were taken from us–we had no contact with the outside world. A camera monitored our efforts to escape. No, it wasn’t a sex thing, a psychology experiment, or Saw VI. This was a game called Trapped: A […]


The Ice Bucket Non-Challenge

The Ice Bucket Non-Challenge

I doubt I need to explain the ice bucket challenge at this point, but just in case, it’s this thing where you get publicly challenged via video by someone who dumps a bucket of ice water on their head. You can film yourself doing the same thing within 24 hours (and maybe donate some money) […]


Why Is Service Slow? The Answer Will Surprise You

Why Is Service Slow? The Answer Will Surprise You

For the first time in a long time, I’m taking two weeks off. From work, from blogging, and mostly from e-mail. I have a family reunion at the beach next week, followed by a week at a gaming conference. I’ll have limited internet access the whole time, and frankly, it’s important for me to focus […]


Is Morality in Our DNA?

Is Morality in Our DNA?

Yesterday I watched a fascinating video from the NY Times about how infants apparently have an ingrained sense of morality. The video is definitely worth watching, but I’ll describe it here in brief. The study involved a number of very young children (6-9 months old) who were individually shown a short puppet show with a […]


Sitting for Hours at a Time: Not as Healthy as You Think

Sitting for Hours at a Time: Not as Healthy as You Think

For a while now we’ve known that sitting for extended periods of time is really unhealthy. I’ve been acutely aware of this since I started working from home, where I often find myself “in the zone” for hours at a time at my desk. I wrote about this on a blog entry a few months […]


Pet Peeve #58: Starting Sentences with the Word “Honestly”

Pet Peeve #58: Starting Sentences with the Word "Honestly"

Honestly, I don’t know why any sentence needs to ever begin with the word “honestly.” What function does it serve? Do we really need to assure people that the sentence to come is the truth? This came to mind recently due to a series of commercials on TV and online where the commercial begins with […]


Pet Please #106: A Really Great, Unique Question

Pet Please #106: A Really Great, Unique Question

This is pet please #106, but really, it’s one of my top 3 favorite things in the world: a really great, unique question. I recently wrote about how there are so many better questions to ask than, “How are you?” Part of what prompted me to write the post is that we’re asked (and we […]


Monopoly House Rules

Monopoly House Rules

It’s a little weird for me to write an entry about Monopoly, as it’s a game I haven’t played in  years and don’t see myself playing again, but the other day a friend pointed me to an interesting article about Monopoly. Apparently, Hasbro has decided to let fans vote on their favorite Monopoly house rules, […]


Internal Debate: Saving the Environment vs Scooping the Poop

Internal Debate: Saving the Environment vs Scooping the Poop

I have a confession. In the past on this blog, I’ve lauded the fact that I use canvas grocery bags. I may have claimed that I single-handedly saved the environment several times because of that. It is true that I’ve used canvas grocery bags for many years. Not only are they good for the environment, […]