Monthly Archives: March 2004

Papa's looking for a brand new one

My Timbuk2 bags have served me well over the years, but as of late, my left shoulder’s been complaining that the right doesn’t do anything all day but answer the phone. So, in my continuing effort to spend more money than sense on things that I don’t need, I’m looking at backpacks.

I just wanted something that let me carry my PowerBook and accoutrements, my current reading material, iPod, a bottle of water, snacks, my GBA SP, a couple of notebooks, digital camera, and whatever DVDs I happen to pick up on the way home from Best Buy. You know, the essentials.

The one thing I need always happens to be the thing that I leave behind. So I take it all.

I didn’t know what I was getting into when I started shopping. Gone are the days when a manufacturer could just slap some nylon straps onto a bag and call it a backpack. Now they have to have value added.

Case in point, JanSport. They have a crazy animation for the Jansport Euphonic up. As far as the flash animation is concerned–“Well, you see, when a pair of headphones and a backpack love each other very much. . .” I can’t even begin to imagine the board meeting for that particular ad pitch. Jansport’s also sunk a lot of tech into their regular backpacks, such as air filled gel straps, and suspension foam for their laptop carrying models.

I’ve got a backpack right now that can hold my laptop, but not much else. Browsing through eBags, I find the four backpacks that I’d like to check out.

First, from Nike, and rating very high on the stealthy-and-sexy category is the Nike Epic. There’s also the Epic 2, which rates very high on the “Electric Boogaloo” scale of naming conventions.

Jansport also has two models that I’d like to check out. There’s the Razor Back, and the Syncline. Sure, I don’t carry around an ice axe everyday, but it’s nice to know that I’ve got the straps to carry one.

I’d still like to find a brick and mortar retailer so I can try either one of them on for a comfort evaluation.

Not high on my list of things to wear is Ogio’s Flight Vest. This is an accessory that asks the question, “Am I luggage? Or am I clothing?” Three pounds for an unladen vest, that’s not even bulletproof–pardon me, bullet resistant.

Whatever I decide, I know that my best option can be summed up in three, simple, one syllable words: Carry. Less. Shit. Stuff.

So, it's going to be like 2 years.

I think the movie CASSHERN could be very interesting. It looks like a fairly thoughtful sci fi piece about the dangers of cloning and Artificial Intelligence that just happens to have a lone ninja fighting a robot army. At least, that’s what I get from the trailer.

Contents: Retro futuristic styling, amazing looking CG, and no english whatsoever.

Also, be warned, there is some violence against robots in this trailer.

Old Friends

I’ve started revisiting the pulpy fantasy novels that I read back in grade school. Say what you will about R.A. Salvatore, his writing gets the job done and his stories are paced fairly well. He’s placed his characters in the Forgotten Realms subset of Dungeons and Dragons, and his first novel, The Crystal Shard, is very quick reading. 15 years later, after watching the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, (still haven’t read the books) I am forced to admit that the story has more than a few, “similarities” with the source material. Then again, what doesn’t?

Nevermind that, I’m going to read the whole trilogy. It’s the origin of one Drizzt Do’Urden, one of the most popular characters, ever. Besides, Drizzt is the man. Er, drow. Whatever.

The constant combat and straightforward stories of the intellectual property almost begged to be turned into some form of electronic entertainment. Wizards of the Coast promptly did, and thankfully, they lucked out and got Black Isle Studios (may they rest in peace) and Snowblind to develop their PC and Console games, respectively. Of note is Drizzt’s appearance as a secret character in almost all of the video games (PC and console) that are based on the Forgotten Realms property. He’s a really popular guy.

After my fantasy kick, I’m probably going to head off into Sci-Fi, and I want to pick up some Asimov. I’ve got a two volume extremely heavy collection of his short stories, and I like his ideas, although his writing could be a little more exciting.

Speaking of excitement, (and being careful about what you wish for) there’s the Will Smith summer vehicle movie based on I, Robot. I have to say, I’m not looking forward to this as an adaptation. I’m expecting a “creative reimagining” * of Asimov’s work. Nice of them to mention him on the website, too.

* See also: bastardization

Candidate, eXtreme!

Since everyone is throwing around amendments, why not lower the voting age? I remember being in high school and debating this candidate versus that candidate. I’m not sure if those conversations were as thoughtful as they would be now, but I can say that it would be interesting. MTV’s rock the vote campaign might actually matter. Political candidates with pop star endorsements. Big Soda would join Big Tobacco and Big Oil.

On the other hand, how can you reach out to a constituency whose parents can ground them so that they can’t reach the polls? It’s an interesting idea, one worth thinking about.

About right

Junk mail is something that we deal with on a daily basis. Whether it’s putting envelopes in a shredder or moving email to the trash bin, it’s a task that is necessary and a waste of time.

Which is why I have my junk mail folder automated to delete email after one month. That’s enough time for people to ask me, “Hey, did you get my email?” Then, I can wade through the viagra offers to see if they were lost in the deluge. I appear to have reached an equilibrium point with my junk folder. It sorts out the correct mail, and deletes the month old items. For the last few weeks, I’ve received the same number of emails that have been deleted.

The number of unread emails in my junk mail folder: 666