Technology

snowflake.jpgJeff and I go to the gym early every morning. Since it’s still dark out when we leave, it’s been pretty chilly lately. This morning when I turned the key in the ignition, the dashboard starting flashing. It also began to beep—a subtle bing, like the musical “fasten your seatbelt” bing that you hear on airplanes. “Great,” I sighed, “something else is broken.”

Jeff, never one to presume the worst, leaned over, looked intently at the dashboard, and said matter-of-factly, “Nothing’s broken.” “It’s not?” “No. It’s just a snowflake,” he said. “What’s just a snowflake?” I asked. “On the dashboard. Look at the temperature,” he said. It read 39 degrees. And there it was—a cute little snowflake.

Apparently Volkswagen was thoughtful enough to alert its drivers when it’s cold outside. Having driven the car only in Southern California, we had never seen it before. If this keeps up, I’m gonna have to ask my mom to let me borrow some of those gloves and scarves I gave to her when we moved here.

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charlene01.jpgMy husband’s last name is Einbinder.  We’ve always assumed the German translation (one binder) meant that it was the moniker for the trade of bookbinding. It’s a rare name. In fact the only other person we’ve ever met with any connection to that name is the movie director Mike Binder. One day, years ago, at the Pumpkin Patch in our neighborhood, we struck up a conversation with him.  Blank Man, a movie he directed, was absolutely the funniest movie that year.  It still holds up.  David Allen Grier kills in it.  Of course, he always kills. It turned out that Mike’s last name was shortened from Einbinder.  Since then, when we see him places, we exchange that twinkle of recognition of our ‘kinship’.

Recently I decided my copy of The Joy of Cooking deserved better than duct tape holding it together.  Months ago I’d read an article in Daily Candy about Charlene Matthews who practiced the lost art of bookbinding. I put it in my email archives under “of interest”. I’m actually getting things done on my list of long avoided tasks and this was one of them.  What an adventure. 

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toddsarahpalin.jpgI’m obsessed.  I want to know everything.  I’ve hunted for her favorite recipe for Moose stew.  I spend hours on my computer searching for footage.  I want transcripts.  YouTube moments.  Because I couldn’t write the stuff that comes out of her mouth.  And I write dialogue for a living. 

She is…special. 

My husband Gary has pointed out that she is our first Reality Television Candidate. 

I believe my husband is on to something.  Her qualifications would be more appropriate for the television show: "The Amazing Race".  For those uninitiated, Wikipedia explains the show on CBS to be: “a reality television game show in which teams of two people, which have some form of a preexisting personal relationship, race around the world in competition with other teams.

No matter what you think of her run for the Vice Presidency, there is no denying that she and the First Dude (that’s more fun than Todd, isn’t it?) would make an excellent “Amazing Race” team.

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baguette-incident-5251.jpgThis is not about making a Christmas list, although I should do that, I guess. It is about my need to check and monitor things constantly, as if I were the Chief of the Baguette Patrol for a supercollider. Not all things. I do not monitor the dust balls in the corners of my dining room, the balance in my checking account, or Sam’s grades.

These things I consider on a need-to-know basis; if company is coming, I vacuum, if I get a menacing call from Comcast, I check the bank account, and if Sam claims he has no homework for the third day in a row, I check his grades using the magic of Power School. I know people who are very concerned about one or all of the above, which is why they have cleaner houses, better cash flow and more disciplined children than I do.

The things I am compelled to monitor include my e-mail, Facebook, my blog stats, and (when I am away from my computer) my Blackberry. I cannot walk by the computer without looking at my Inbox, deleting all irrelevant items, and (unless I am dragged away by a raging family member) answering the legitimate messages.

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ipad-420x0.jpgAfter just 24 hours I'm more impressed with this device then I thought I would be and that says something because I was already sure it was a game changer. Most of the time when you have high expectations for a restaurant, movie, or gadget they rarely match and never exceed – but the iPad delivered.

Here are a few wow moments for me so far.

VIDEO: I know Jobs has influence over Disney but I'm still blown away by the free application ABC put out that allows you to watch in beautiful HD episodes of so many shows. I don't even mind the commercials since the content makes it so worth it. How other networks, (hello NBC, CBS & FOX), didn't jump on the initial wave is beyond me. If I ran a network I'd have every episode of a serial type show like Heroes up on this device yesterday on the chance it would intrigue some viewers to get back into the show. Other great apps such as steaming Netflix and MLB should also help deliver on the experience.

SURFING: Based on every review and the demos I saw I was expecting to be impressed by Safari. It was even better than everyone says when you are looking at sites you have seen every day.

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