Please wait 8-6 weeks while we accrue interest on your money

After deliberately passing up fantastic deals from multiple companies, due to the fact that it required me to front capital and then remind the company via snail mail to send me back my cash minus any earnings during that “investment period”, good news seems to be right around the corner. Best Buy has announced that they are discontinuing notebook mail-in rebates. Hopefully this will spread across all product lines and allow the consumer to save rather than forget.

Movin' on Up

3 cities and 5 residences in 5 years.

This weekend I finally moved into my permanent residence in Dallas. After finally getting a breather from travel and the holidays behind us, my next mission was to find and move into an apartment. It’s amazingly difficult to decide where to live in a new city when you work out of your house and don’t have any major conditions for physical location. In San Francisco I was bound by price and wanting a true urban experience. In Austin, my house was predetermined by a vacant bedroom in a houseful of good friends. Dallas…well, it’s taking a lot of getting used to (again), but thanks to another set of good friends, I was able to focus on my new job and the transition without the pressure of a new domicile.

I am truly excited about finally moving into my own place. IKEA gift certificates in hand, I have purchased a new (King size) bed and am slowly unplacking boxes…some of which have been taped up since September of ’03. This is definitely going to be an experience!


Alpha, Bravo, Charlie

Making connections are just a part of traveling the friendly skies, and although the gates are wrong as often as they are right, it is still appreciated when the flight attendants announce the gate to which you must make your mad dash. Yet for DFW, many of the first five letters of the alphabet which correspond to terminals sound very similar, leading the voice over the loudspeaker to resort to the phonetic alphabet.

Now, I don’t know about you, but if I were American Airline’s marketing team, I wouldn’t want every mention of the quaternary letter of the alphabet to be an advertisment for a competing airline.

And since we’re on the subject why isn’t phonetic spelled fe-net-ik-lee?

Things I've learned during my last 24 hours in Costa Rica

  • The power plugs are identical to the US, except with wider mood (read “voltage”) swings
  • The water’s OK to drink, mostly.
  • America has already settled in….I can see an Office Depot out my window as I type.
  • I can pick up Hooters Costa Rica shirts for my souvenirs.
  • McDonalds, among many others, provides servicio express. That’s delivery to you and I.
  • Parking attendants are really extortionists who stand in parking lots and scratch your car if you don’t tip them.
  • You won’t get a ticket for driving while intoxicated, but you will for talking on your cell phone.
  • Red lights also seem optional.
  • Prostitution is legal. And I read that in a book, reallly.
  • One day is not enough time to be a tourist if you have to work half of the day.

One less tax

In a rare move, it appears that the courts and national representatives might actually do something helpful for consumers. Since 1898, a 3% tax has been added to all phone bills to help (get this) “pay for the Spanish American War.” Americans have overfunded the 6 month war by about 50 times, adjusted for inflation. And to add shock to awe, the telephone companies actually agree. AT&T’s general counsel even states that “it makes no sense, and it ought to be repealed.” Rejoice for rational and logical thought from corporations, the legal system, and the house of representatives!