Sunday, August 30, 2020

Friday 5 for August 28: Consumption

From the Weekly Friday 5.

1. What would you consider your most recent major purchase?

Haven't done any major purchases in a few years now. To me, major means anything over $100 for a tangible item. Financially times are way too tough and I really have to be tight on spending.

2. On what are you hoping to spend a good chunk of change in the near future?

Whenever that happens, in order.... a new Chromebook, a Mac Mini with monitor and keyboard, and possibly another car, most likely "pre-owned"... I have no idea when any of this will happen, but they are certainly not going to happen all at once.

3. When did you most recently resist the urge to splurge?

All the time. I am not a "splurge" consumer. I think about everything before I buy. That is why my wishlist on Amazon is dozens of products long. I only browse, but rarely buy.

4. When did you most recently experience buyer’s remorse?

Air bed. Twice now. Don't ask. I won't tell.

5. What’s something interesting you consumed this past week?

More streaming audio and video. I finally transitioned my large Google Music library over to the Google owned YouTube Music service. What a mess that created. Not all of my audio files moved and several of the playlists are a mess.

The YouTube app for mobile as well as the website is also a mess. There is no easy way to organize artists, playlists, albums, etc. On playback I cannot find the buttons to "clear queue"... No good way to drop songs one by one into a queue without having to include all the songs on a particular album or playlist. What a fucking mess.

On the other hand I am enjoying watching the new Star Trek Lower Decks animated TV series on CBS All Access. This may be the best of the recent spin-offs from the Star Trek universe. This one is a comedy of some sort and focuses on the Starfleet personnel that have to do a lot of the grunt work to keep a starship going. The starship is the U.S.S. Cerritos and its mission is "second contact".... mainly to take care of administrative stuff once the Federation establishes a new relationship with an alien world and culture.

What I like the best of the new series is that it occurs at roughly the same time as Star Trek The Next Generation.  I like the familiarity of the series as it relates to TNG and its two follow-ups, Deep Space 9 and Voyager... all of which occur in approximately the same time frame.


For onebadscrivener:

Lovers and Poets, yes I started to follow Shannon Hurley and I think she posted that stuff to her website many years ago. She has been steady with Lovers and Poets though the duo is her and her husband. It was originally with another guy. My favorite Shannon Hurley song is "California" from 2008.

The funny video and song "We No Speak Americano" by Yolanda B Cool and DCup was a worldwide #1 dance and pop hit in 2010. "The name is a reference to the scene in the film Pulp Fiction, where the character Jules (played by Samuel L. Jackson) tells a female armed robber named Yolanda (played by Amanda Plummer) "Be cool!".... re: Yolanda be cool! I saw the video on YouTube and fell in love with the song... hehe.. yes, useless pop fodder right up there with "Fridays" and "Call Me Maybe". Useless but catchy music.

Friday, August 21, 2020

Friday 5 for August 21: One-decade rewind

1. What are some albums you really like from 2010?

By the year 2010 I was mostly buying digital singles from Amazon or iTunes. But I did get a few albums. Here are my top 10.

1. Caro Emerald - Deleted Scenes from the Cutting Room Floor
2. Maroon 5 - Hands All Over
3. Neon Trees - Habits
4. Bruno Mars - Doo-Wops and Hooligans
5. Taylor Swift - Speak Now
6. Elton John and Leon Russell - The Union
7. Jack Johnson - To the Sea
8. Katy Perry - Teenage Dream
9. Ringo Starr - Y Not
10. Selena Gomez and the Scene - A Year Without Rain

I really love the Caro Emerald album. It is played with regular frequency to this very day. Discovered her in 2009 on that now defunct website. She is my most played solo female artist on my Last FM.

2. What are some songs you remember fondly from 2010?

Kind of in numerical order,  here are 10 of them (in retrospect)

1. Need You Now - Lady Antebellum
2. Animal - Neon Trees
3. Misery - Maroon 5
4. Rhythm of Love - Plain White T's
5. Cool My Heels - Nikki Yanofsky
6. Back It Up - Caro Emerald
7. Alejandro - Lady Gaga
8. Hey, Soul Sister - Train
9. Break Your Heart - Taio Cruz
10. Just the Way You Are - Bruno Mars

Here are some other notables (in my book)

- A Year Without Rain - Selena Gomez and the Scene
- Bulletproof - La Roux
- I Heard of a Girl - Miss Li
- Back to December - Taylor Swift
- A Night Like This - Caro Emerald
- Walk With You - Ringo Starr
- I Saw The Rain - Lovers and Poets
- Colors - April Smith and the Great Picture Show
- Good To Be Me (Feat. Kid Rock) - Uncle Kracker
- The Sweetest Thing - Camera Obscura
- Bad Romance - Lady Gaga
- A Stitch in Time - Smashing Pumpkins
- We No Speak Americano - Yolanda Be Cool and Dcup - This one is for you Scrivener.

3. What’s your favorite movie released in 2010?

I hardly ever watch movies these days. It started from the 2000s as prices at theaters steadily went up. I kind of had to stop buying DVDs too as I had too much and pay cable was out of the question. In 2011 I cut my cable cord. I only watch streaming video and mostly only on the free channels.

That said the only two movies out of that list that I saw are the following:

- Shrek Forever After - Just saw this a few weeks ago on Tubi TV. Pretty good wrap for the franchise.

- Chronicles of Narnia - Voyage of the Dawn Trader - The only movie I actually paid money to go see at the theater that year. I had seen the previous 2 on the big screen in prior years. This was the 2nd best of the three movies, the original being the best one.

4. Which television programs* debuting in 2010 did you rather enjoy?

- Caprica - Sadly it was cancelled after 18 or so episodes. This was a good prequel to the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica series of 2004.

- Hawaii Five-0 - I watched it regularly for the first 2 or 3 years and then grew tired of it. For 2010 it was not bad + plus it kept Hawaii's TV industry alive after LOST wrapped up that year.

- Storage Wars - I never watched this when it first came out, but watch it and its location centric offshoots on TubiTV or Pluto TV when I just feel like vegging out on something stupid. I like free streaming.

5. Which events in 2010 bring back good memories?

The most memorable events that bring back good memories in my life that year was spending a week or so with my Mom and Dad. Dad was in his last months of life. On several days he wanted to see different places on the Big Island where he grew up and lived. I drove Mom and Dad up to Pauuilo Mauka, Kalopa, Ookala and Laupahoehoe all in one day. The plantation camp that he grew up in was torn down years before we revisited the place in 2010. He was kind of sad. I shot a lot of pictures.

I also made a 20 minute video of him talking about some of the memories he had while growing up in Ookala. Here is a one minute clip of that video.

Dad passed away in November of 2010.

Second most memorable event of 2010 was doing a press tour for HawaiiReporter and sailing out on the U.S.S. Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier that July for the RIMPAC exercises.

Friday, August 14, 2020

Friday 5 for August 14: 家

I don't know what the kanji character in the title means. I guess it has
something to do with this week's topic from Scriveners site. Dwellings, places you lived or presently are.

 1. In what forms of housing have you resided?

Single family home back in Honokaa Hawaii. Lived there my first 18 years of life. Belonged to my parents, but now with my sister. I have returned there many times over the past five decades. Love the place.

Dorms - A zoo while I was in college.

Off campus housing - While in college, I also had to share a dwelling with a smelly dog and bedbugs. At another place, I lived with a bunch of Japanese and two mainland Chinese students who occupied the kitchen cooking up all kinds of stuff when they were not away at class or studying.

Condo Dweller - Since the 1980s I have been in the same high rise condo that has been in our family since.

2. What are the best and worst things about the location of your home?

 Best things about my current location:

Convenient walking location to all major grocery shopping - Don Quijote, WalMart, Target and Foodland Farms plus Longs Drug. Those are the major affordable stores in my area of Ala Moana Center. Everything else became pricey over the years, not what it was like back in the 1970s, 80s and 90s. I miss those days.

Living in the city you are close enough to decent medical facilities and

Worst things about my current location:

  • RAIL and the Transit Oriented Development (TOD) now springing up around me. Arrrrgh!
  • Higher property tax assessments because of TOD and RAIL. I hate RAIL.
  • Increasing property tax rates overall. Even if you don't own property, high taxes and rail impacts you as a renter because landlords will pass that cost to you.
  • Higher HOA monthly fees, not like how it was before. Again RAIL and high property tax impacts.
  • Rising crime rate - there was another murder not too far away from my dwelling again this week.

3. Where would you keep a second home if you could have one?

I like Hawaii despite the high cost of living. The weather is fine. So I guess my choice for a second home would be somewhere back on the Island of Hawaii, just outside of Hilo past the humming bridge along the Hamakua Coast of Highway 19. It should be no farther than 15 minutes away from the convenience of shopping at Hilo but away from any possible lava flow danger that could head down Mauna Loa mountain.

Otherwise I'd be okay in Honokaa, Waimea, Ahualoa or the Kohala area in North Hawaii.

4. How well would you adapt to permanent RV life?

 If I moved to the mainland, I think I could do OK living in a decent
 RV. I just need a place to keep all of my records and CDs a good
 storage facility for the duration of such an adventure; youd have to go
 fully digital with music, movies, TV and books in order to maintain a
 large collection of entertainment and knowledge. My Google Play Music
 cloud would be great for that but now Google wants to end it and force
 us to move to YouTube Music I hate that.

 I watch a few video blogs about some people who live the RV life. As a
 photographer it would be a great opportunity to take pictures, pictures
 and even more pictures everywhere.

 The downside is trying to find someplace to lodge/park the rig, keep it
 maintained, fueled and supplied with necessities and also having to
 deal with um getting rid of the waste products. The other downside is
 finding some kind of revenue stream to pay for it all. That would be
 the most difficult part.

 5. Whats the prettiest thing to look at within five miles of your

I am mostly surrounded by tall buildings and even more of them springing up because of the dreadful rail and TOD. Not much of a view to call breathtaking. However if I zoom my camera in close to the far west or east horizon, I can sometimes capture a somewhat decent picture like the one at the top of this post.

Friday, August 7, 2020

Friday 5 for August 7: Polarity

Questions from Scrivener's Friday 5 page.

1. What are the dumbest and smartest things you did this week?

Dumb - Put stuff off for another day. Quite frequent in my life.

Smart - Made a suggestion to a group and they agreed on it.

2. What are the worst and best things you ate this week?

Worst thing I ate: Probably any and all the foods my doctors advise against.

Best Thing This week: Bento bowl from Don Quijote (Chicken, rice, etc.) - also qualifies as one of the worst due to health, salt content, etc., etc.

3. When this week were you unhappiest and when were you happiest?

Unhappiest - When I made my dear friend unhappy. Sorry.
Happiest - When I got help with a couple of items.

4. What did you have too much of this week, and what did you have not enough of?

Too much - Anxiety.
Not Enough of - Money.

5. What are you dreading in the next seven days, and what are you eagerly anticipating?

Dreading - Bill payments
Eager For - Relief

Sorry can't be too specific on these.