You just gotta laugh

jacques-magnet

You can react to something by laughing or by getting upset. I choose to laugh. (I wish I would choose to laugh a lot more than I do!)

This was one instance when laughter won out…

My sister, her husband and three children were visiting. We had a fabulous time together. Jacques, the youngest, is not quite two. He’s very curious — and is figuring out what life is about. (But then I’m not young, and I’m still figuring that out.) A byproduct of his curiosity is that he was into everything. The vast majority of our frig magnet collection disappeared. No worries — I figured they would show up again at some point.

So Heather noticed something out of the ordinary as she glanced at our heater vent. She took it off and discovered the missing magnets! Jacques had taken them and pushed each one through the slots — maybe like a vending machine.

We all had a good laugh!

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I’m too practical

dresser-pix

Some people are artistic. Some people are practical. Some people are both. Even though I am an artist (graphic designer) by training and partly by profession, I tend toward the practical side.

So when we visited this home I was struck by the beauty of the familial display on the master bedroom’s dresser.

My dresser is cluttered with little things that have nothing to do with beauty — and everything to do with life — keys, wallet, sunglasses and camera.

What’s on your dresser?

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Strange delivery

playaway

I went to our nearby new library recently. I checked out a book in a new form — the “Playaway”. Basically, I am a sucker for new things — and free new things are even better.

These are not for the average consumer — they are about $35–40 each. (You can buy the Kindle edition of this book for about $10.)

The title? (“Living Well in a Down Economy” — one of the “Dummies” series.) I didn’t listen to the whole thing. There were some interesting bits about breathing right and preparing a resume. (My wife is looking for a job). It’s rare that I would have time to listen to a whole book like that, so this format isn’t for me.

I think this is a bad idea. You get a cheap MP3 player with a pre-loaded title. The sound is very poor compared to a real MP3 player. Navigation is sub-standard. (The interface “screen” is a tiny LCD readout.)

My recommendation? Libraries should “lend” MP3 titles of audio books via iTunes that would be playable for a 3-week time period. Then you use your trusted MP3 player and the interface you know and (hopefully) love. For people without an MP3 player? Perhaps Apple could produce a super-durable iPod that libraries could lend out for 3-week increments.

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I hate labels

labels-no

Ah yes, you are thinking that this is a proverb about how I hate it when people get labeled.

Wrong.

Simply put, I hate labels on clothes, towels and washcloths. So I cut them off, sometimes. Why? They are scratchy against my neck. They stick out. The tell me how to wash it, which I already know. And once I figure out that it’s 100% cotton, I no longer need to know that. Finally, I don’t care what the brand is, as long as the quality is decent.

That last statement is not entirely true. Those of you faithful readers know that I do care about what brand my computer is.

And I do celebrate the move by many clothing companies to print their info on the garment, rather than having a separate sewed-on label.

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Who is the mascot?

rapids

Ben (our 13-year-old) and I had a great Sunday afternoon bonding experience. We were given tickets to a Colorado Rapids soccer game.

The seats were very close to the opponent’s goal, during the second half. We had the pleasure of seeing the only goal from very close. That made me glad we were in a country that does not value soccer (“football”, for the rest of the world). If we had been in England or Benin, it would have been difficult to be that close to the action.

So anyways — Ben and I noticed that the Rapids have no clear mascot. Roughly seven different “animals” were seen in costumes around the edge of the field. Time to get a real mascot, I say.

Takeaway: If you live in Colorado, going to a Rapids game is a great way to see a live sporting event without taking out a second or third mortgage. If you live near another major North American city, check our your city’s soccer team. You might enjoy a fun (and different) outing!

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You can’t keep everything

r-plate-art

Rachel created this lovely piece of art. My urge was to keep it. Somewhere. Instead, I “kept” it by taking this photo.

When I was a kid, we didn’t create as much art as kids do today. My parents were blessed by not having to face the dilemma of which of the many many pieces of art to hang on to.

By the time we reached child number three (Rachel), we collected even less. That’s one of those unfairness-of-life things. But since she’s the most artistic of our kids, perhaps our rate of collection evened out.

Takeaway? Digitize.

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A face only a mother could love

acura-face

Acura went wrong, a few years back. They introduced this snake-like beak to the front of their vehicles. Now it’s on all their models.

It is positive to have unity in your family — but only if that unity is based around something good.

Admittedly, they must have chosen this new direction to distinguish themselves from the rest of car offerings. But different is not always good.

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Grow old, gracefully

anti-aging-spa

I had to laugh when I saw this business.

We are meant to age. It’s obviously good to try to present ourselves in the best way possible, but some of the most beautiful “older” people I know are those who aren’t trying to make themselves look way younger than they really are.

You know what I mean.

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