May 2008

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Wife and I are expecting our first child in May. This weekend past, my in-laws bought us a new collapsible "porta-cot" on wheels. This simple-to-set-up cot is designed to be taken with you on daytrips when you visit friends and family and wheeled from room to room as the need arises.

It took us 1.5 hours to construct this wonderful bit of modern convenience, and when it was finally up (after collapsing several times during construction, hence living up to its name) we discovered that it wheeled a distance of five feet before stopping - because it hit the doorway. Yes! It doesn't fit through a standard doorway.

The in-laws have since agreed to buy a second-hand timber cot and have it set up permanently in their home for when we visit. Meanwhile, we will keep our un-portable porta-cot permanently set-up in our house, because we REFUSE to dismantle it.

Uncool indeed.

Peter Costantinidis

"Is there any good reason the shower controls can’t help me out a little?"

About 10 years ago we remodeled a bathroom. The shower now has a non-electronic temperature adjuster. I throught the salesman was taking me for a ride, but it worked. We always leave it set to one (comfortable) temperature. In the morning, we just turn on the water and it adjusts to that temperature.


Oh, and with your rant about your lack of technical finess, you may need to turn in your geek credentials.

You play tennis, have a hot wife, own businesses and can't use technology.

Who is aggressor now!!!

Minister of Silly People in Green

Interesting Scott,
Most of your blog's readers are non-geeks. Glad you keep the pointy haired types busy during the day, so we can accomplish something.

Minister of Silly People in Green

Hey Jerry,
Something's got to defrost them.

Minister of Silly People in Green

Every mapping program has it's issues. I like having Microsoft (Yes, they're evil, but competent programers) Streets and Maps loaded on my laptop. Before I leave on a trip, I can review the route, check it against the Google Earth satellite photos and call if I'm still worried. Even the microsoft software will try to send you a few hundred miles out of your way occasionally, but at least you can review it in advance.


You should buy your own airplane. That would be frickin' cool. First step:

Mr Bongo

Dude...your bio-rhythms must be on the down side this week...wait a week or two and things will improve.

I used to use MapQuest but it seems to not like FireFox, so I started using Google Maps - so far so good.

If you haven't checked out the Weather Channel lately, they are using MS Virtual Earth - I can zoom in and see my that's frickin' cool!

I agree on the shower knobs, put a frickin' H and C on the knobs!

Have a frickin' nice day!!


Modern baths/showers in Japan have a digital temperature selector (and *frickin' unlimited hot water!!!*).

But from this experience I note that what's comfortable at one time of the year (e.g., 42C in the winter) will be just *too frickin' hot* at another (I can go as low as 37 in the summer and can't stand more than 39).

I could say the accuracy of the digital temperature control is suspect (which would put it on a par with all the heat/AC thermostats in the country) except this winter/summer thing has been very consistent, year after year.

Silly Sod

I'd like to check that you can actually read a map before passing judgement. Few people can use maps properly and most of those few wouldn't bother with auto-navigation units (mostly because they're slower, require different skills, and just aren't as fun as maps).

Viruses and especially virus software are too frickin uncool.


Oh, god, online map services. Don't talk to me about online map services. Did you know that a friend of mine asked for a route from one street in new york to another, a few blocks away, and got a forty two hour trip via bangkok?

We have a similar Australian sevice at, and it oncedirected me to an actual street, I kid you not, that did not actually exist. At all. The two streets to either side of it on the map turned out to be adjacent, and a phone call to my dad discovered that no street by that name exists in the entire suburb. Do you know how hard it is to catch a bus from a street that's not there?

Not frickin cool.


WHY cant there be a standardized power supply for laptops and standard battery chargers for cellphones. Too fricking uncool!!


On the subject of navigation, here in Washington there's a little town called Colfax, which as far as I can tell was designed so that anyone who went in would never get out again. I seriously believe this place wasn't settled, explorers just wandered in and couldn't find their way out again. This town had 1st street and 1st avenue had multiple 9th streets following each other and just to make life perfect when we stopped at a gas station to buy a map they had Washington state maps, but no maps of Colfax. When I asked why, the teller stared at me like I'd asked for a Unified Theory of Everything. When I gave up on getting a map I asked for directions, they sounded something like this: "Head for the intersection of 3rd and 3rd, turn right and take the second 9th street you see, it dead ends but if you cut look carefully on the right you'll see a small gravel road follow that and it will take you to 13th street, theres a one way sign but no one obeys that so just head right up the road till you hit the interstate." Only the tellers instructions were accompanyed with a heavy dose of condescension as if she couldn't believe that anyone didn't know that.

In conclusion, to the induhvidual who said "The human mind. Versatile, reliable, and always right with you. Too frickin' cool", I offer the above story as proof that while some human minds are "too frickin' cool" the vast majority appear to be "too frickin' uncool."


You think you understand the iterated prioner's dilemma until you try to take a shower in a hotel at the same time of the guy in the next room...

Kevin Kunreuther

1.)I guess this blog post that answered my question from your previous blog post!
2.)Wow! I am shocked to hear that Google Maps didn't work for you. From what you described, I could swear on a stack of Dilbert collections you had a common Mapquest user experience. I've never had Google Maps steer me wrong, ever. If I entered incorrect information, GoogleMaps will not work correctly, so it's my fault. I'm not saying Google is infallible; some of their products should never have left the lab and gone beta at all. But GoogleMaps outshines all the other online direction finders like a thermonuclear bomb. So, I say, you screwed up somehow using Google Maps.
3.)As much as you enjoy attending Indian Wells, and had a chance to show off your very pretty lady wife to all the other swells, next time, hire out a big screen teevee and arrange to view the event closed circuit. The trip sounded not worth the aggravation.


165,000 American troops, 1/2 trillion American taxpayer dollars to "liberate" a country that hates us and resents our presence - Too frickin' uncool


I know you probably weren't soliciting advice, but I feel compelled to comment on this one.

I am an experienced 'shotgun' navigator, I've done it all across the midwest and beyond. First of all, screw G***** it is the spawn of the evil one. So are automated nav utilities. Tried one once and just about threw it out the frickin' window. BUY The latest version of Microsoft Mappoint instead of relying on free onterweb services. NEVER rely on a computer generated set of directions. Find the address of where you are going, type it into Mappoint, and manually find a route from your house to that place. Print out ALL the relevant maps, including a detail of each town you pass through. CALL the party you are visiting for directions from the interstate or the airport to their house, to avoid any wrong one ways or ripped up streets. AND ALWAYS have a folder of up to date road maps as a fallback. If your lovely wife is not comfortable being a shotgun navigator, or she freaks out (it takes a special temperament), let her drive. If you are nevigating, it is imperative to not give the appearance of indecision. Dither silently, and then give a definite direction, even if it's the wrong one. It's really common sense.


Give me one single good reason why I should care what happens to you in the shower. Seriously. I hope you burn your sharpie right off.


Hey... cavemen have feelings too. Watch the Geico commercials.


Didn't Dilbert hook up some sort of device to his shower in the cartoon series that automatically adjusted the temperature when he told it to?


Google Maps sucks. I was looking for a Target in Manhattan, and it sent me down to Times Square. When I got there, I found not a Target, but an office building with a bunch of ads for Target on it. For some reason, Google Maps had this on file as a Target store. Too frickin' uncool.


My CD burner, without fail, freezes after successfully burning a CD. The CD comes out fine, I just have to close the program from the task manager. Every time.

Too frikin' uncool.

D. Mented

Mapquest has been known to add unnecessary left-turn loops back to the same road through heavy traffic (apparently just to be smug, because the computer won't have to drive it)
I use maps, and have been known to pull over and re-read the map to look for alternate routes. This does not work in San Francisco because they make the maps wrong there on purpose. I once tried to navigate there and found us trying to turn into a road that did not exist, the location of which was occupied by a building that - from the architecture - couldn't have been less than 60 years old, and might have been 100.
However, I have to say, complaining about that sort of thing does come across as "too frikkin' spoiled"
the "too frikkin uncool" list would have to include things like being sent to Iraq without proper armor, and then being recalled back after two weeks of what was supposed to be a year back home... Being a new Iraqui recruit and finding out you don't get bullets for your gun, or any armor at all, because the insurgents got the money the U.S. sent to buy those sorts of things...being the innocent guy that just got cleared of all charges after years on Death Row because of evidence they always had but never processed (and being expected to be grateful)Losing your home to Hurricane Katrina, then hearing the government is getting you a new little trailer, then finding out you can't have it because you live in a flood plain, so FEMA is going to sell it and keep the money...going to school in Washington D. C. where if all of the toilets in a rest room are broken they close that rest room (and the other rest room only has two working)
Having to stop and ask for directions just doesn't make the list, even if you are a typical guy.
D. Mented


Thirst Mutilator! It's got what plants crave!


Brought to you by Carl's Jr...

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