Side by side — My unscientific Lyft vs UBER comparison

| March 17, 2016

After using both Lyft and UBER quite a few times over the past year, it has been difficult to say one is much better than the other … they are pretty similar. From the consumers perspective, it is far better to have the competition as it spurs innovation, competitive pricing and better service. We riders […]

Escaping for a minute while writing lunchtime Python scripts

| February 25, 2016

The American Pi blog was due for an update (including on MyDesultoryBlog.com too!) and thought escaping for a minute to gaze into water and sky of the right color for this dreary February afternoon was a good idea. Why am I still in Cincinnati again?

MedAire Travel Risk Map for 2016

| February 11, 2016

(lower resolution JPG image above – download full resolution PDF from MedAire) MedAire launched its Travel Risk Map 2016 PDF, an interactive map that highlights medical and security risks across the globe. The online map rates regional security as ‘extreme’, ‘high’, ‘medium’, ‘low’ or ‘insignificant’, and medical risks as ‘low’, ‘medium’, ‘high’, ‘very high’ or ‘rapidly […]

Love this Slick TRIP Kickstarter backpack project

| February 7, 2016

I’d be jumping onboard for this Slick Kickstarter Backpack project if the $249 for the TRIP version didn’t frighten me away. Sure looks like the perfect traveling companion for my many trips — both for weekly work trips and those trips to the boat. It looks like they intend to keep the quality high … […]

First nasty winter drive of 2016 was not too bad

| January 14, 2016

This weeks trip back and forth from SW Ohio to NE Ohio was the first with slippery road and winter snow in 2016. There are sure to be a few more winter days this year, but glad to already be into mid-January. This drive was also the first winter driving for the BMW X5 35d. […]

Take an Insprational Trip to Israel this spring – Mar/Apr 2016

| January 11, 2016

Have you ever considering visiting Israel? Here’s a great opportunity to go with my friend Pastor Keith Thomas for a “Best of Israel” tour. He has been taking groups for years and combined with his handpicked guides and economical  group rate accommodations and airfare, a trip this spring may be your best opportunity. Touring Israel […]

What a view! Happy Birthday to my son-in-law Drew

| December 13, 2015

Looking at this sunrise photo at the Grand Canyon on a small screen does not do it justice, so click so it’s full-size; that’s a great photo from Drew’s new Nexus 6 smartphone. Perhaps its not just the amazing view or stunning sunrise photo … but the fact that my “crazy daughter” (as Drew titled his email) […]

Great to see my kids enjoying their 20s …

| December 10, 2015

20s?? Well for Drew (photo) … for only a few more days! Katelyn and Drew are in Arizona celebrating Drew’s 30th birthday with his family this week and they sent me a  couple photos from the desert and in a hot air balloon flight — beautiful!  It is great to see all three kids (Taylor […]

From my personal perspective, the TSA did their job well

| November 21, 2015

What a duffus! I don’t want to admit, but I made a MAJOR airport security mistake on Friday morning … and am thankfully a free man to tell the tale. KUDOS to the much maligned Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for doing their job and doing it well. Neglectful Rich left an extended round full 9mm […]

Finding photos that stir good memories #TBT

| October 29, 2015

An old friend Charlie Matthews (Kamikaze) and I are closing in on a memorable December 1977 road trip we took together in his Volkswagen bug. We had a great time (minus the medical incident) and started a yearly trip for me with buddies that repeated for years. I ran across a couple more when my […]

TechFriday: What does it take to steal credit and debit cards?

| August 28, 2015

Most technology followers know the theory behind copying the swipe code from traditional magnetic credit cards, but few people swiping their cards at the gas pump realize that the “skimming device” is installed by criminals is installed out of site “inside” the gas pump. Q: If you can’t see it, how do you know your […]

Air travel on the cheap. First flight on Frontier Airlines.

| July 11, 2015

It was a quick and inexpensive flight to Florida this past week to do a little tropical weather prep aboard Encore. Summer is the time of year that “commuter cruisers” double their line, remove sails and store an extra windage in case hurricane winds target the area … besides I really was looking forward to […]

Buy airline tickets 47 days in advance & on Tuesday afternoon

| June 17, 2015

Now I’ll be the first to admit, I spend too much time agonizing over purchasing things wondering if I’m buying the right model or brand … and am I paying too much. The Internet has only complicated matters since there is even more information to process. It’s the same thing when booking travel … although […]

Poor flight management by #Delta Airlines at Reagan National

| June 14, 2015

Somebody has had a lousy day of traveling … or is it two days? After 9 days in London, Taylor was up at 6AM UK time on Sunday to get to the airport for his flight back home. Because he had re-booked his ticket from CVG instead of leaving from Williston, ND, he ended up […]

Norwegian Dawn gets hung up on a Bermuda reef

| May 20, 2015

I'm remembering the tight entries and snake like departures from Bermuda a few years ago … it was just a matter of time. In this photo provided by the Royal Gazette, the Norwegian cruise ship Norwegian Dawn, lies aground near Bermuda's North Channel Tuesday, May 19, 2015. The Norwegian cruise ship Norwegian Dawn, lies aground […]

The Treasure Coast was a popular place this weekend

| March 30, 2015

After the rain on Friday (above), the weather improve for a weekend finishing up a long drawn out engine work (plus a few other repairs) to Encore at the marina in Florida. The weather improved and was high 70s on Saturday and Sunday but with the north wind felt cooler in the shade. I wasn't […]

The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry

| March 22, 2015

Last year about this time I had mentally decided that Brenda and I would be cruising the Bahamas aboard our sailboaat Encore in March 2015, but as “life happens” those dreams were not meant to be. As the year progressed, both of our surviving parents had health concerns requiring more of our attention, Encore started […]

Ever dream about taking an expedition up the Amazon River?

| March 21, 2015

If you do plan a trip on the Amazon River, you’ve probably though about the wildlife … especially the ferocious insects, dangerous reptiles and famous fish … like the Piranha. They inhabit the neotropical freshwater rivers of northern South America, including the countries of Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela. […]

Rain, leaks and cold showers

| March 2, 2015

Just as it was in the French Revolution, I’m back and forth telling A Tale of Two Cities and “it was the best of times, it was the worst of times,” so to speak. I spent the weekend taking care of a condo rental issue in Delray Beach, Florida and of course was staying on […]

Long weekend trips for Taylor and Katelyn

| February 18, 2015

Taylor and his friend Nick took advantage of a long weekend to take a trip from frozen North Dakota to Boulder, Colorado and Wyoming, just as they did over Thanksgiving. They skirted just east of the Rocky Mountains and had great weather. Since there were only two guys to split the gas this trip, I’m […]

Air travel and the annoyances of flying cattle class

| December 15, 2014

Expedia posted a lighthearted polling of what annoys airline passengers which got me thinking about what I notice and where I may offend. I already do my best to be overly attentive to most of these annoyances, but probably would rank “The Aromatic Passenger” as #1 followed by the “Back Seat Grabber” as my #2 […]

Enjoying life where you live when you can

| November 28, 2014

Our family was not together this year for Thanksgiving, but Katelyn, Drew and Taylor made the most of the holiday … well particularly Taylor and his friends Tyler (L) and Nick (R). The three buds up in Williston, ND stretched the weekend out and decided to drive up to the Canadian Rockies in Banff, Lake […]

Shocker: Ridiculously HIGH turnpike tolls in Pennsylvania

| November 24, 2014

We’ve driven the PA turnpike several times in the past, although the last trip traveling the full length was probably close to a decade ago, but the 2014 tolls structure gives a new meaning to the term “highway robbery.” This past weekend, my wife drove to Philadelphia from Cincinnati for a bridal shower and thought […]

Visiting Dad, having breakfast and enjoying the fall colors

| October 17, 2014

I stopped to check in on Dad this week while driving as is my work routine since my mom passed away in 2012 (1 year 10 months ago to the day). We had our normal breakfast at Bob Evans in Sidney, Ohio and I filled him in on Katelyn, Drew and Taylor (sometimes it’s dinner, depending […]

So Lonesome – Dome homes in Cape Romano Florida

| October 12, 2014

Somewhat an excuse to slip in a Hank Williams song, but the Dome Homes article was intriguing because we explored this area with my college buddies in the late 1970s every Christmas break. I’d still like to get back there by sailboat and anchor for a few days …weeks … or maybe months … and […]

Dashcams in Russia make almost all U.S. drivers seem sane

| September 29, 2014

You might want to think twice before criticizing drivers in your neck of the woods … and be glad you are not driving in Russia (YouTube video below).

The power of nature on display in Papua New Guinea

| September 9, 2014

Tavurvur is an active volcano and the current eruption on August 29, 2014 sent ash clouds into the atmosphere disrupting flights to Australia. Rabaul residents have been advised to remain indoor to avoid ash. The video demonstrates the power within our planet and the silent danger when and where pressures are released. We humans seem […]

Who doesn’t love a good end of summer shark video?

| September 1, 2014

Here’s a “large, hungry” Hammerhead Shark feeding in the clear “shallow” waters in Destin Florida … as viewed from a balcony.

Sunrises and Encore projects in Florida this past week

| August 30, 2014

The past week had me on an enjoyable but quick trip to take care of a few sailboat maintenance items in Florida. The sails were re-stitched and needed to be picked up from South Sails as well as new halyards spliced and hoisted. Unfortunately the summer sun has been hard on every exposed part … […]

Fires in Canada spread smoke south of the border

| July 23, 2014

Last weekend while traveling in North Dakota, we ran into the smoke from the many boreal forest fires burning in the Northwest Territories in Canada on Sunday. At first I wasn’t sure why the normally crisp clear skies were so hazy, but then Taylor told us about the smoke blowing south from the 156 currently […]

Busy, busy, busy … with Taylor up in Williston, ND

| July 20, 2014

After our visit with Katelyn and Drew in Minneapolis ( 7/18 & 7/19), we flew up to Williston, North Dakota to see Taylor. Flight and weather were great and after dinner our first night we stopped at Taylor’s Williams County Zoning and Planning office (below) and took an evening hike along the levy east of […]

Archive: More photos from our July 2014 visit to Minneapolis

| July 19, 2014

  Katelyn forwarded a few of her photos from our visit to Minneapolis. We really did have a great time visiting and KNOW that they will “enjoy” at least the next three years while in Minnesota for Drew’s hematology fellowship; at this point I can see them staying far longer … but then again, it’s […]

Having a great time with Katelyn and Drew in Wayzata, MN

| July 18, 2014

  We’ve been having a wonderful time enjoying what Minneapolis, Minnesota has to offer “in the summertime” with Katelyn and Drew. Our couple of days has been filled with activities from picture hanging and yardwork to bike riding and fine dining (photos above from 6Smith in Wayzata).   Another evening we we were off to […]

A cooler mid-July followed by a weak to moderate El Niño

| July 12, 2014

In planning our upcoming trip visiting the kids, a quick search of the weather indicated that we are in for a cooling spell which will feel good in mid-July IF it happens. I also ran across the  National Weather Service predictions for a weak-to-moderate El Niño. According to the NOAA site, “typical El Niño impacts in […]

Our family celebrated the 4th of July in FOUR different places

| July 7, 2014

First … my son Taylor took a few days away from work in Williston, North Dakota to going backpacking with a few guys in Glacier National Park – Montana. His weather was picture perfect and besides being out of shape for the long an challenging hikes, he had a fantastic time. I’m so glad he […]

Weather watching as INVEST91L decides what it is going to do

| July 1, 2014

Packing list for this week: Repaired autopilot: ck Tool bag: ck Hurricane prep list: ck Clothes bag: ck Computer bag: ck Weather forecast – pack RAIN GEAR … Well that last one might not be going quite like I planned. So much for scheduling my trip for Encore’s hurricane prep for the first of July. […]

Katharine is an immature Great White Shark, but she is still big

| May 13, 2014

The team at Ocearch tagged a Great White Shark they named Katharine off the Cape Cod coast of Massachusetts in August of 2013, but this 14+ foot 2,300 pound “immature” female has been checking out the Florida coastline and yesterday a beach near Sebastian. A few more miles south and we might see her poke […]

Big Data and Predictive Analysis when it comes to airfares

| April 22, 2014

A post on the FiveThirtyEight.com blog by Kaiser Fung this past weekend analyzed the prediction of airfares on Kayak (after the removal of Microsoft’s Bing Travel’s Farecast in January 2014), left me wondering if the days of successful Big Data’s Predictive Analysis are disappearing? According to my read on Fung’s selective airfare routes research, you […]

TechFriday: Camtraptions and African Wildlife Photography

| March 28, 2014

Will Burrard-Lucas has been at the cutting edge of African wildlife photography using his BeetleCam and now BeetleCopter Camtraptions. The above video is from a GoPro Hero 3+ … but there are some excellent stills from the BeetleCam using a DSLR after the launch of his company in January 2014. Some great innovations. Click image […]

Wrapping up the long weekend in Florida

| March 18, 2014

In wrapping up the “work trip” (cough, cough) down to Florida … I figured the trip would not be complete without at least a walk on the beach. Sunday afternoon sunshine made a good excuse to see how the sand felt on my feet – nice (panorama with the iPhone 5 above – click for […]

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.