The breakup – Ditching Facebook, permanently

This isn’t about me, it is about you. Seriously. I knew that you were abhorrent in your privacy practices. That you encourage people to over share, and that in the guise of creating a community, you have built walled silos and self reinforcing echo chambers. I knew that, and I continued to ritualistically log in, to swipe and share funny memes, to shake my head at obvious fake news (oh, when The Onion and The Borowitz report are the rational seeming posts), to make like minded friends (again, with the reinforcing of my biases), and to laugh and bond with my virtual friends. Continue reading →

Maintenance Day

I have been busy this weekend. Some changes, some consolidation, and more to come.

First, I have exported all the posts from the sister site, tralfaz.org. That was my original home (and my original domain, as the .com variant was being hogged for a long time). All those posts are here now, and searchable. Almost 800 posts in total added. All the images and formatting should be good. Some spot checking of posts look A-OK.

Originally begun in 2009, there were very few posts from that time. However, I really picked up the pace of posts in 2011, through the wee hours of the start of 2017, when I really created the tralfaz-dot-com site. Those 7 years, tralfaz-dot-org was my main property. It will remain up for some time (and there are plenty of people who have posted trackbacks to that site) but it will eventually disappear. Continue reading →

More notes on Music

When we last checked in, we had come to the conclusion that the two “winners,” Spotify and Amazon, were the two services I kept subscriptions to. Both offered excellent coverage, deep catalogs (more on this later), and quality apps for computers and my iPhone (presumably for Android too).

I will admit that I have been listening more to Spotify. Their “Daily Mix,” personalized for my tastes, are outstanding. 6 playlists, that are fresh, and quite appropriate to my preferences. Spot on. Continue reading →

Review: Bissell SpotClean ProHeat Pet

Two weeks ago, we adopted a sweet little girl who proceeded to have some accidents on our carpet. She was (and remains) timid, and the stress of the new home, changed food, and her anxiety led to first diarrhea and then piddles on our carpet.

While the carpet was sell used when we moved in (at least 8 years of heavy, rental use), we we kept it, and have had it professionally cleaned a couple of times. Fortunately, we weren’t expecting perfection, and the traffic areas are pretty grungy (closing in on 2 years since the last deep clean). Continue reading →

Our new addition – Lizzie

It should not surprise anyone who has been paying attention to this blog that we had to say goodbye to Garrett in January, at the ripe old age of 13. Since then, the house just hasn’t felt right. Sure, it is nice to not have to worry about feeding, and keeping the yard locked and safe, and to be certain to not stay out too late. But all that convenience pales in the absence of a buddy.

To partly fill the void, we have been sitting two wonderful Greyhound girls, Falcon and Clara who have brought joy, a bit of chaos, and the love of a greyhound back into the house. But still, something was missing. No permanent addition to our family. Continue reading →

The Simpsons – the early years

The addition of a Plex server, and the digitization of my DVD and Bluray discs, has given me ample opportunity to revisit some of my old favorites that haven’t been brought off the shelf in a long time. Among this collection is the first four seasons of The Simpsons. 1989 – 1993 episodes, and many essential classics. Continue reading →

Indiana Jones – a Pleasant Memory

While I have ragged on the original Star Wars Trilogy, noting that my recollection from my misspent youth was faulty in its fond memories, I recently also bought the complete seried of Indiana Jones movies on bluray. My fond memories of the magic of Indy, the stories of his adventures the fun effects. It was magical when I first saw it back in 1982 when Raiders of the Lost Ark was released. Continue reading →

Cooking and Shortcuts

Little known fact is that I worked my way through college cooking at a variety of restaurants and venues. Started as a prep cook at a Marie Callendar’s, I spent time at a sports bar, a Mexican restaurant, a seafood bistro, a sous chef in a country club, and then a chef at a local chain of Italian food, and finally running the kitchen at a corporate caterer. Continue reading →

Instant Pot Chicken Noodle Soup

On the Instant Pot journey, this weekend I revisited a classic, the simple, hearty, yet instantly recognized “Chicken Noodle Soup.” There are some fairly basic ingredients that are common. Onion, Celery, Carrots, white meat chicken, and seasonings. Fairly simple, hearty, and – dare I say it – wholesome. The recipe I used was from Jo Cooks, and it was pretty simple. I used about 2.5#’as of split chicken breasts, and I added peas, but otherwise I followed the recipe to the letter. (well, I did add two bay leaves and several cranks of coarse ground black pepper from my peppermill) Continue reading →

Real Estate Insanity

Living in ‘Silicon Valley’ is interesting for many reasons, not the least of which is the zaniness of the housing market. Having grown up here in the 60’s and 70’s, I was oblivious to this phenomenon, thinking that it was normal. That is until I moved to Arizona for more than a decade and returned.

When we returned in 2014, we knew that we were in for a shock. When I moved away in 2003, the condo I bought in 1999 for $249K, sold easily for $350K, an amazing return on my investment. Continue reading →