iPhone photography and seeing signs of spring

| April 3, 2018

The other day I mentioned “selective focus” as a photography technique to my son … so I took advantage of the low light and ugly rainy weather to use the “longer x2 lens”on the iPhone7plus to hide the ugliness. The telephoto lens on any camera, especially in closer up photography), is that it is easy […]

A great breakfast deal – the Taco Bell Mini Skillet Bowl

| March 28, 2018

Q: What is the best breakfast deal? A: Taco Bell’s Mini Skillet Bowl My son Taylor and I in agreement that the best deal around for a tasty, quick and inexpensive fast food breakfast is the Taco Bell Mini Skillet Bowl. Where else can you jump start your day for $1.00 … and get as […]

Avoid fly by night services, plugins and linking when blogging

| March 23, 2018

Here’s some advice from someone who as blogged daily since 2005 — AVOID using data, photos, video, etc archived on other services. Over the years, I have been frustrated by “what seemed great at the time” using services offered by companies who specialize in hosting data for users. A little history: It started for me […]

With Harry’s, I now look forward to shaving in the morning

| March 17, 2018

Just to set the stage when it comes to shaving … I’m a “humble twin” or cheap Schick ST2 razor kind of guy. I usually add a little Barbasol Aloe shaving cream or CVS equivalent and rarely opt for an after-shave lotion. It is a daily chore that I’ve repeated daily for decades, although have […]

Disappointed in the thin Totallee cover for my iPhone 7 plus

| February 24, 2018

  I probably spoke too soon in praise of the Totallee super thin and lightweight case or more appropriately "cover" for my iPhone 7plus last year. Last week. While out of town traveling the thin skin just "slid" off the plastic case. It was as if the bonding method they used to attach the skin […]

The pressure of saying the right thing or old person #advice

| February 21, 2018

There are a few things in life that can really make someone feel good … one of them is in receiving a respectful complement. Really it started as a question, but a younger father of teenagers asked me how Brenda and I "balanced our lives" when our kids were growing up.  I’m not sure if […]

Try Vinegar instead of Acetone to Clean Hands

| February 15, 2018

Using acetone to clean up after nasty messy projects such as epoxy or sealant? There’s something that works better, is cheaper AND is less toxic! … Vinegar.

Explaining How Tax Cuts Will Affect You by Dave Ramsey

| January 28, 2018

Delivering commonsense “tough love” clarifications and explanations of financial issues has always been a Dave Ramsey strength. After the Trump administration finally moved their tax plan through congress, Dave offered a 10 minute explanation as to whether it was a good thing or a bad thing. If you are steeped in years of seeing things […]

It really does not take that much talent

| January 20, 2018

Probably should have been posted as a New Year’s resolution, but this works for ALL and at ALL times in life and career.

Do you boil water in a microwave? Take note …

| January 18, 2018

An old warning that has been passed around the Internet before, but because something similar happened to me with a Corning Corelle bowl last month, figure it was worth sharing. Boiling Water in a Microwave (also see Snopes) A 26-year old man decided to have a cup of coffee. He took a cup of water […]

Tech Friday: Wildcard Certificates coming to Let’s Encrypt

| December 29, 2017

In the world of community supported software and Internet applications, there are few better than those associated with the Linux Foundation Collaborative Projects … like Let’s Encrypt. The latter provides HTTPS certificates that are perfect for lightweight Linux OS webservers and it operates on a "donate" for certs services basis. This month Let’s Encrypt plans […]

Last minute gift idea AND picking the right hose clamp #humor

| December 20, 2017

Just in case there are a few men looking for last minute jewelry gifts to give to their sweetheart for Christmas, here’s a ring idea that will pretty much guarantee that you’ll never need to worry again – you’ll either be alone … or dead! And since I know there is sure to be a […]

Semi-humorous advice from a Roomba Vacuuming Robot user

| December 17, 2017

Before you buy a Roomba vacuuming robot "used," be sure you know what it has been cleaning. Actually I couldn’t help but smile at this well told and somewhat humorous story that might also be a useful warning to others? Credit to Jesse Newton: So, last week, something pretty tragic happened in our household. It’s […]

What do you do with the extra Epoxy after it has been mixed?

| December 5, 2017

When mixing a small batch of epoxy for a repair, I’m always looking for a secondary project that needs some adhesion. I’ve finally decided that my go-to project is to apply additional "wear bars" to the heels of my favorite Sperry Topsiders. I’ve done this before and besides the slightly annoying "clicking" sound, the epoxy […]

Answering an email from a reader on chainsaw sharpening

| November 25, 2017

A reader wrote me a long email last week after noticing my chainsaw post and had a couple questions regarding how I sharpen the chain/blade on my chainsaws. I really had not giving it that much though since my sharpening technique is probably not expert or appropriate advice. So reader be warned. Over the years […]

Tech Friday: Twitter shortcuts when using a computer

| November 24, 2017

Although most of use probably use Twitter on our phones or tablets, there are times users check out the latest Tweets on "the bigger screen." If you use Twitter as your news (or "fakenews" feed), try a few of these power-user shortcuts.

Tech Friday: Am I out of my mind upgrading to High Sierra?

| November 17, 2017

I have a perfectly functioning iMac and against my better judgement spent this morning upgrading the OS to macOS High Sierra (release about 1-1/2 months ago). Hopefully that was enough time for quick fixes because I’ve upgraded Macs too many times over the years and have often regretted the decision. Usually software and hardware requires upgrading […]

Be Yourself … a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson

| November 11, 2017

Tech Friday: Making power adapters last longer

| October 20, 2017

Here’s a short tip for making power adapter wires last longer when traveling or packing them in a computer bag: When winding the cord, don’t wrap the first loop too tight. The usual fail points when cords are coiled over and over are where the wires enter the power block or the plug, so allow […]

Tech Friday: New “used” After Shokz bluetooth headset

| September 29, 2017

After slowly giving up on ever really making my “90% hearing loss” right ear useful again (due to  Ménière’s disease – posts 1 or 2), I had a chance to try out my buddy Jeff’s After Shokz bluetooth headset a couple weeks ago. I’m not saying it was like I was binaural again, BUT the “bone conduction” […]

iRobot Verro has been the longest lasting automatic pool robot

| September 23, 2017

About the only replacement parts I’ve had to purchase for our iRobot Verro pool sweeper/ cleaner were the filter bags that go inside the housing. It has been the best of the pool cleaners we have had. Originally we started our pool ownership with a hopping Kreepy Krauly gizmo for our first pool back in […]

Smarter investments than solar energy for most homeowners

| September 10, 2017

For homeowners considering energy use and investing in solar … take a look at these FIVE solutions first from nuwireinvestor.com (although still one of the best investments for your home is "insulation") Some of the smartest investments you can make in your home are ways to maximize the energy efficiency of your heating, ventilation, and […]

Sperry Topsider update: Trying to repair worn heels with epoxy

| September 5, 2017

  It has been a while since talking about Sperry Boat Shoes, but it is obvious by the popularity of the old posts that I’m not the only one who loves wearing them. Usually the question is how to keep them from smelling or make them a bit more comfortable (with insoles). In this post, […]

How to tie a cleat hitch video by APS Advisor #sailing

| August 28, 2017

Good visual video advice on How to tie a cleat hitch from APS – three different options and reasons for each. Half Wrap Cleat Hitch Full Wrap Cleat Hitch Multi Wrap Cleat Hitch

After all these years – a 50 piece set of 1/2″ carbide router bits

| August 13, 2017

The older I get the more often I stumble on items to include in my book, "Things To Buy When You Are Young" … or at least one that I’m slowly putting together and working on. I’ve fumbled with woodworking most of my life and to be fair, have purchased or been giving my share […]

Tidbit Tip on keeping drains flowing without harsh chemicals

| July 28, 2017

Roto-Rooter’s Paul Abrams has a pipe-clearing trick that’s simple, cost-effective and environmentally friendly (unlike most drain cleaners, which use harsh chemicals). Here’s how it’s done: Remove the stopper on your drain Pour ½ cup baking soda down the drain Pour 1 cup white vinegar down the drain Wait 10 minutes (boil some water while you’re […]

Archive: Tools and toolboxes to carry in the trunk of your car

| July 27, 2017

Hagerty (the classic car company) posted an article talking about essential tools to keep in your car that I wanted to archive. I’ve always kept tools in my car along with odds and ends and even fluids like antifreeze, oil and brake fluid. The problem I face is keeping the correct tool in the right […]

Keep an eye on your CCW license expiration date

| July 13, 2017

Having a CCW license is just one more expiration to creep up on you if you are not paying attention. I’m not sure how I remembered, but glanced at my 35 day past expiration on my Ohio Concealed Carry license are realized it has already been 5 years. Wow, it seems like just the other […]

Pressure washing the antifouling paint on sailboats

| July 5, 2017

Just wanted to archive some Practical Sailor “Waypoints” advice excerpted from Renee D. Petrillo’s A Sail of Two Idiots … good to remember about powerwashing. … we had a narrow canal to squeeze through to reach the Travelift. Then we were strapped into it and hoisted out of the water. We then made one of the most expensive […]

TechFriday: Larger screened iPhones flipping to landscape

| June 30, 2017

Switching from an iPhone 5s to an iPhone 7 Plus has a few surprising pluses and minuses that need to be address by new users. One such negative adjustment has a fix that on the surface may not be found by everyone. The annoyance: The larger iPhones (currently 6 Plus & 7 Plus) go into […]

New iPhone7plus and new VirginMobileUSA as carrier

| June 27, 2017

Well so much for waiting for the new iPhone8 to arrive in the fall … as was the plan. On the other hand, the $1000 “rumored” price was frightening me anyway. Last week for a Tech Friday post I blogged on the VirginMobileUSA “Inner Circle” promo that offered unlimited talk, text and “almost” unlimited data […]

TechFriday: Apple announced iOS11 at the WWDC17 conference

| June 9, 2017

Along with all that is happening with hardware and innovation at the Apple developers conference — WWDC — one of the more anticipated upgrades to the mobile operating system was announced. Along with the likely "millions" of suggestions from daily users, my iOS11 suggestion/request was probably lost in the shuffle … although I’ve made the […]

Tips on making Gmail easier to use by Joanna Stern, WSJ.com

| May 18, 2017

Great tips from tech writer Joanna Stern of the Wall Street Journal on dealing with a few Gmail nits most of us using Google’s free services have. See her article at WSJ.com. 1. Priorities, Priorities You may not know it, but Google’s email bots have not one but two ways of automatically organizing your messages: […]

Saving money takes discipline – 20 ideas on Fox Business.com

| April 22, 2017

My favorite news network shared 20 excellent tips for saving money (by Daniel Kline, who writes for the Motley Fool). I highlight a favorite below. Saving money takes discipline It means forgoing things you want and making tough choices, which can be tough in our consumption-focused society. However, saving money can make it easier to […]

TechFriday: Lenovo Yoga 710, my everyday carry notebook

| April 14, 2017

Last week someone asked me about my large screened notebook, the 15.6″ Lenovo Yoga 710 with an Intel i5-7200U CPU (2.50GHz), 8 GB memory and a rather smallish 256GB SSD. The question was whether I would recommend it. The answer is yes … if you can live with a couple small nits that I have […]

TechFriday: A simple thing – Google Calendar Scroll Disabler

| April 7, 2017

At one time or the other, we have all started to pull our hair out while on the computer and  said, "this is ridiculous, why doesn’t someone fix this!" Well after literally years of waiting for Google to do something about the "sensitive scroll feature" (or curse) when moving through the months in Google Calendar, […]

Passwords and protecting your digital data

| March 29, 2017

We all struggle with ease of use and security when using a computer and online services … what’s the best way? That’s likely a debatable question since we want easy access, but don’t want our data compromised – "how easy is too easy?" What we do know is that a simple or "no" password is […]

Robocalls are on the rise, even on the Do Not Call Registry

| March 22, 2017

Well the FTC has some simple advice for those "still" receiving robocalls even when on the Do Not Call List or Registry. Most of us continue to receive unwanted calls on landlines and cellphones, even we are on the registry (and have renewed). It is illegal unless you have giving the caller written permission. Many […]

For inexpensive whole house wireless try a WiFi Range Extender

| February 24, 2017

Previous efforts at using older wireless access points and routers have all been a disappointment when extending WiFi out to our detached garage/poolhouse/workshop, so when Amazon had an AC750 Netgear WiFi Range Extender (Model EX3700) on a "Prime Daily Deals" sale, I was skeptical. Still frustrated with the lack of a good Internet connection further […]

Tech gadgets add a new wrinkle to Cat’s in the Cradle message

| February 13, 2017

A lousy, but socially needed, "Music Monday" message: While eating lunch at Wendy’s over the weekend, I notice a father and his young son spending time together for lunch as well. "Nice," I thought … until the all to often happened. The dad’s attention was drawn to his cellphone … to the point he gave […]

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.