Commuting Like It’s 1999

This morning as I hopped into my souped up, crime-fighting 2002 VW Golf for the daily commute to my undercover job as a corporate drone, I performed the usual pre-flight routines.

  1. Stainless steel travel mug filled with Guayaki Greener Green Tea? Check
  2. Laptop? Check
  3. Prescription eyeglasses with polarized sunglass attachment? Check
  4. iPod? …
  5. iPod?? …
  6. iPod!!!!??? …
  7. Noooooooooooo!

Yep, my iPod died in my hands. Well, not died as in dead, but died as in it seemed to be working but showed that I had 0 songs instead of my roughly ~3500. I quickly ran inside and tried to perform a restore from my iTunes. Success! Now, let’s just wait for it to sync everything back up.

5 minutes later: “copying 568 of 3487 songs”

It quickly became apparent that this was going to take longer than the -10 minutes I had to wait before I was even later for work. So, I had to steel myself to the fact that I would have to drive both legs of my commute without my lifeline, my sanity-saver, my lovely iPod.

Yeah, it was pretty horrible. But, I made it in this morning with my wits about me. We’ll see how the horrid Atlanta Friday 6pm commute goes. I might not make it. Say a little prayer for me.

And now, for no reason whatsoever, is me and Charlie playing soccer:


My days have been getting away from me recently. Work’s been kind of crazy, I’ve got way too many freelance web projects cooking, we’re real busy at home, the holidays are coming up and I’ve been working on yet another music project. I feel like I spend all day writing/answering emails, working on code, FTP’ing files, and trying to keep all of the right projects compartmentalized in the right areas of my brain. By the time I get a chance to look at my watch it’s 6pm already.

Today I launched a client’s web site, and this weekend is the grand finale of a music project I’ve been working on, so things are looking up. Being busy is a good thing, but not when you can’t see the forest from the trees. I need to take another look at GTD or I might go crazy (great, something else to add to my list).

Sometimes just talking about how busy you are gets it off your chest and you can breathe again. Thanks for listening and sorry this post was mainly about nothing.

Amy’s Kitchen

Amy's KitchenEver since the wife and I bought a house at the upper reaches of our financial abilities, the name of the game around themuy household has been to spend as little as possible so that we are still able to afford this beautiful home.

A big part of the money saving strategy has been to curtail the number of times we eat at restaurants. The wife and I looooove to eat food that someone else makes and brings to us while relaxing at a dimly lit table, so this has been a little difficult for us. But, apart from a few breakdowns that have lead us into Nuevo Laredo’s capable hands, we’ve been pretty good about eating at home.

So, instead of making my trip down to the local Quiznos for lunch these days (where they seriously ask me if I want “the usual”), I’ve been bringing something from home. Yep, the microwave and I have been getting downright chummy as of late.

For awhile, I was pretty loyal to Stouffer’s. They make a pretty damn good Chicken Parmigiana, but overall I got the feeling that I just ate a lunch made of plastic. It just feels very unhealthy to eat one of those things everyday. So, I went on a search to find a better, more healthy frozen meal. That search has lead me to Amy’s Kitchen. You might not know much about Amy’s since grocery stores usually stock them in the health food section, but I highly recommend that you seek them out.

First, let me get something out of the way: they’re all vegetarian (gasp) meals. My wife the vegetarian has been eating Amy’s burritos for years and that’s how I found out about them. So, if you’re looking for some carne, go somewhere else. But I assure you these are the best tasting frozen dinners out there, meat or no meat.

How does Amy’s make such great tasting frozen dinners? The secret is pretty obvious: just use good ingredients. Case in point, these are the ingredients of the meal I had today:

Black Bean Enchilada w/ beans and rice
Organic long grain white rice, organic pinto beans, filtered water, organic corn, organic tortilla (organic white corn cooked in water with a trace of lime), organic tomatoes, organic onions, organic bell peppers, organic tofu, organic black beans, expeller pressed high oleic safflower oil, organic zucchini, sweet rice flour, spices, sea salt, tapioca flour, black olives, organic garlic, organic green chilies, chives.

Sounds pretty good, huh? Simple ingredients, all organic, free of genetically modified organisms (GMO‘s), no preservatives and all from a small, family-run company.

Another great thing about these meals is the simple cooking instructions. I’m not crazy about the “cook for 2 minutes on high, rotate 1/8 turn and then cook on medium power until you see the cheese start to bubble, then take out of microwave, stir, replace plastic wrap, etc” method of cooking most frozen dinners. Again, here’s what my Amy’s meal says:

  1. Remove tray from carton.
  2. Put a 1 inch slit in overwrap.
  3. Cook for 5 minutes.

Pretty simple.

I highly recommend Amy’s dinners. I’m a big fan of the Mexican meals, but the pasta and pizzas are excellent as well. They’ve been a nice addition to our household meal options. Oh yeah, and there really is an Amy.

Plan Accordingly

If you haven’t already heard, we’re pretty much screwed on the holiday thing for 2004. Almost all of the major holidays fall on a weekend, so us working stiffs are going to be hard pressed to find 3 or 4 day weekends in which to frolic this year.

Now, I know you just got off a 2 week stretch of pretty much no working like I did, but that’s no excuse to not start thinking about the upcoming year. And with these weekend holidays it’s not going to be easy to plan. Well never fear, because your friends at have come up with an easy guide to planning your sick days this year. Remember: sometimes it takes a lot of work to goof off from your job.

Come Again?

Here’s some advice that may come in handy to you some day:

If you ever find yourself with a client named Becky Adler and an accountant named Heidi Becker, don’t try to leave a voice mail to one as you write an e-mail to the other. There is no way you’re not going to screw up one of those names.

Becky Ardler
Heidi Becky
Becki Heidler
Adelaide Stevenson

Trust me. Send the e-mail, clear your head and THEN call Heidi.

p.s. As I wrote this entry, I screwed it up again. See? I told you it was impossible not to screw that up!

Our Nation’s Capital

Well, I’m in DC for the Adaptive Path Conference. So far, so good. I’ve been hanging out with some friends and seeing the sites. Tried to go to the Spy Museum yesterday, but it was too long a wait. Went to see the National Art Gallery instead. Saw the usual suspects: Degas, Monet, Rembrandt. Good stuff. Art = Good.

That is all. Just a stupid update. As you can see from above, I’m tired of using the personal pronoun. Oh. Well.

Oh yeah, the conference is good. As Frank Black screamed on an album: “I’m learning!.”