Mind over Matter: Stuff I cared about at the time

  • Keep the Rubber Side Down

    Keep the Rubber Side Down

    This autumn, I’ve had three good friends suffer falls and injuries from their bike slipping on ice. Probably a decade ago, I had a similar incident, on the Minuteman Bike Trail, where I was turning to go around the gates they had setup at the time, and my front wheel slipped right out from under…

  • Pin That Post!

    Pin That Post!

    I’ve always had an interest in locks and locksmithing. A few years ago, I bought someone’s re-pinning kit on eBay. It was in pretty rough shape, so I removed all the pins, put them in teeny little ziploc bags, and imagined I would eventually get around to sanding and re-painting it. But I never did.…

  • Oliver!

    Oliver!

    For what you are about to receiveMay the lord make you truly thankful. from the lyrics of Oliver! from the musical Oliver! Last night, we went to see John Oliver perform standup comedy at the MGM Music Hall at Fenway. We used to watch The Daily Show pretty religiously back when Jon Stewart (cousin Jon,…

  • Ireland

    Ireland

    TL;DR — we vacationed in Belfast and Dublin for six days. The day after the tournament was over, we took a lovely express bus to a regional airport, and took a smallish plane, for a shortish time, to travel to Belfast. (When was the last time you got to walk out on the tarmac to…

  • The Ultimate Trip to England

    The Ultimate Trip to England

    You may be sensing a theme here in my titles. This time, we have followed Clara to Merry Olde England to watch her play in the WFDF World Under-24 Championships in Nottingham. Each (interested) country fields up to three teams — a Women’s (W) team, a Mixed (X) team, and an Open (O) team. The…

  • The Ultimate Road Trip

    The Ultimate Road Trip

    Well, we finally did it. Susan and I managed to get to watch Clara play in this year’s USA Ultimate Collegiate Championships. Her Northeastern University team, the Valkyries, have played at nationals 3 of the 5 years she’s been there, and of course, there were no nationals (or much of anything else) in 2020 and…

  • Design for Serviceability

    Design for Serviceability

    About an hour into a brief, twenty-four hour getaway, I received a not quite panicked call from my mom, letting me know that her microwave (a Panasonic NN-SN733W, bought in August 2015) wasn’t working. She uses the microwave all the time, for heating up water to make tea, and even making a good percentage of…

  • Another of My Favorite Things

    Another of My Favorite Things

    Maybe this is a series? Growing up, my parents had a 14 speed blender — I think it was a Hamilton Beach. Each of the speeds had a name — things like blend, whip, puree, mix, etc. I think it had 7 buttons for the speeds, and a “High/Low” range switch that selected one of…

  • Objet d’art

    Objet d’art

    Not everyone is likely to agree with my assessment of this particular artifact, but in my opinion it is a paragon of industrial design. Perhaps nobody loved the Bell System at the time, but the gear they made (which they owned, and you rented) was made to last for decades, which this example certainly has.…

  • More on Music… (not moron music)

    More on Music… (not moron music)

    Early in my life, my exposure to music was almost exclusively classical music and opera. At home, we had a semi-portable stereo phonograph, and a kitchen radio. The record collection was, with the exception of a handful of children’s records, classical and opera. The kitchen radio mostly played news from the local NPR station, but…