Pro comments moved to Gravity Medium

I just realized that most of my (John’s) blogging activity has moved off this site. I’ve setup a separate web site / blog specifically for stuff I’m doing in the public media arena.

It’s called Gravity Medium and I’ll be spending much of my time there. Just be forewarned that it’s focused on my work (and other topics) in public media. That may or may not be of interest to you.

By the way, you can also find me (John) on FriendFeed, where all this junk is getting aggregated into a single feed (photos, Twitter,, Google Reader items, etc.).


Happy Birthday, Stephanie!

Golden Gate DetailsWell, it’s Stephanie’s birthday today (Sat, 1/26). And it’s friggin’ cold in Anchorage again (currently 10F). But we’re still going to brave the cold (but sunny) weather to go shopping today. Stephanie doesn’t know what we’re shopping for, but I do.

Meanwhile, a year ago this week we flew off to Seattle, San Francisco and Santa Barbara for a vacation. That was a lot of fun. We did that instead of going to Hawaii, which we thought would be more expensive and less interesting overall.

And during that trip last year, Stephanie got a bit of a birthday surprise — a brand new MacBook! It’s rare we do such extravagant birthdays, but she needed a new computer and wanted to go Mac.

Some of our photos from last year’s trip are on Flickr — just click the image above to see more. I even put captions on all of them. Naturally, we shot a lot more photos than are on Flickr, but didn’t want to bore people.

This year, no January traveling. But I’m off to L.A. in February and we’re both off to San Diego in March. We’re even meeting up with family in San Diego and tooling out to Palm Springs, too. More photos later, huh?

Hey Jason!

bb.pngSo I go to Best Buy this evening to buy a (crappy) Linksys router for a guy at work that needs help setting it up. And Stephanie (who bought Monk – Season 5) introduces me to Jason, a former colleague at ACS and, apparently, the sole reader of this site.

Hello Jason. Welcome to your site! 😉

Anyway, I discovered a few things that Anchorage shoppers might like to know…

  • Best Buy sales reps are not on commission, either for specific products or — get this — extended warranties. Apparently sales of extended warranties might play into a job review, but there’s no direct compensation. That’s a good thing for shoppers, as extended warranties are rarely a good deal (though I did recently recommend someone consider an AppleCare warranty).
  • There is, indeed, a second Best Buy being setup in Anchorage, on the north side of town in the shopping center being developed by CIRI and pals. I knew that already, but had forgotten. Hopefully that will alleviate the horrible parking problems at the existing location. That’s the only reason I hate going to Best Buy in Anchorage and do my best to find low-traffic times to go.
  • The current Best Buy location in Anchorage is the largest physical retail location west of the Mississippi in the Best Buy network. As I remarked to Jason, it didn’t seem that big to me. That might be because I used to live out East and I even lived in Best Buy’s hometown so I’ve seen some big stores.
  • As I had heard before, but Jason confirmed, sales in the Anchorage Best Buy rock.
  • The “Apple guy” (can’t remember his name… Ben?) from CompUSA that so many people know in town is now working at Best Buy (due to CompUSA’s collapse). Good for him and them. Screw CompUSA — the sooner they die the better… I hated that store. And I shouldn’t — I worked for CompUSA many years ago in the Columbus, Ohio area and it was okay.
  • Best Buy’s CEO is gay and hit on Jason when visiting the store recently.
  • Okay, I made that last one up.

So if you’re headed out and want to buy a computer at Best Buy, or whatever, see if you can find Jason to help you. Tall guy, glasses, likes Army of Darkness, carries an iPhone and knows what the hell he’s talking about.

Blow it, throw it — just get rid of it

Oh, baby… you’re coming with me. I’ve got a job for you.

Last year I used a two-stroke gas engine snow blower (snow thrower — whatever) to keep the driveway clear in a fairly busy winter in Anchorage. Worked okay. It was a Toro, too.

But every time I used it I ended up smelling like a truck stop. Not a trucker, but the actual truck stop itself. I had to immediately peel off my clothes and throw them in the washer after clearing the driveway. If I left the clothes in a laundry basket, the room would end up smelling like a truck stop, too. Crazy!

The nasty oil-and-gas half-burned exhaust would blow straight on you as you manuevered up and down the driveway. I’d never seen anything like it. Or heard — it was one noisy beast, too, with plastic panels clattering against the vibrating engine. I hated it. Only I hated manually shoveling 12″ of snow even more.

This year, it’s bye-bye gas snow thrower. We’re going electric — just like our lawnmower and weed whacker. Quieter, cleaner, and just as effective. No gas/oil mix stored in the garage, no nasty exhaust. I kinda can’t wait. Kinda.

I’m actually ready for spring.

Just getting started

Hello there.

We just moved into this new site and are still unpacking, so give us a bit to get settled in.

The good news is that the site will be a little more lively in the weeks and months to come, simply because WordPress makes it so easy to edit the site at any time from anywhere.

See you soon!