The Good and The Bad of 2001

So everywhere people are writing about how bad 2001 was, and everyone I talk to keeps saying, "This was the worst year ever, I'm so glad it's over!" And while I agree it's been a difficult year for many folks, myself included, I like to be more optimistic. Rather than focus solely on the bad, I decided I'd write a list of the good things that happened to me in 2001 as well. So I present my "The Good and The Bad of 2001" list (I thought adding "The Ugly" would be too much.)

2001: The Good 2001: The Bad
Didn't have a nervous breakdown Had to walk away from my company, Pyra, to prevent it
Wonderful trip to Paris and Antwerp in the spring Got laid off from work upon my return
Landed interesting contract project quickly after layoff Project went kaput days before Sept. 11
I only know 1 person killed in the attacks I still cry when I think about Sept. 11 and everyone who was less fortunate
Exciting trips to Berlin and DC for conferences Still unemployed
Blogger is still running and growing I'm no longer a part of it
The year is over The year has no chance to redeem itself

Please have a happy and safe new year's celebration and I'll see you in 2002!

A rainy loss of motivation

The rainy season has begun in earnest. The cat has taken to sleeping on the heating pad, even when it's not plugged in. The tree is dropping many needles now. I have the motivation of an ant, no wait that's probably wrong, I think ants have lots of motivation, like when they carry those big leaves back to their ants nests or homes. I have the motivation of something decidedly less motivated, an animal of your choice.

Merry Christmas 2001

Our Christmas Tree

Well the presents are opened and now comes my favorite part: sitting and reading one of the books that I've been given. Today's selection is The French Laundry Cookbook by Thomas Keller. I can't wait to try some of these recipes. It's also inspired me to start saving my money in the hopes of going to the The French Laundry for dinner. I figure if I start saving a dollar or two every day (in a jar with the label "French Laundry Dinner Fund") I should have enough saved by May or so, when the weather will be delightful in Napa. That means around March I'll have to start calling to try and get my reservation. I think it will be worth it.

Enjoy your day and your presents if you're of the Christmas persuasion. If you're not, please enjoy your day nonetheless.

Buying a camera from Digital eTailer

Now that my new camera, a Nikon Coolpix 995, has arrived safely, I can recommend the place I bought it from, Digital-eTailer. I was suspicious since I'd never heard of them and it was so cheap ($648, but it's now listed at $699). After I spoke with someone on the phone to "confirm" my web order (confirm meaning "we'll try to upsell you on all kinds of junk you don't need but it will be worth it to listen to our spiel for five minutes since the price you're paying is so much lower than anyplace else selling the camera online, and there's no tax, and you're getting free shipping because you bought two accessories, so see, it's not too bad to listen to some salesy rant now is it?"), the camera was on its way and arrived a little more than a week later. If you're looking for a new camera, you might want to try Digital-eTailer. Especially if you want the Nikon 995, since they had the lowest price (and if you buy by December 31, 2001 Nikon is offering a $100 rebate on it.)

Commercials at the movies

On the movie theatre commercial tip, a point of clarification: I didn't mean those slides that they show onscreen while people are entering the theatre and the lights are still up and you're trying to find your seat and not step in any movie theatre floor goo (which got all over my favorite green bag when I saw 2001 recently at the Castro and was really gross). These commercials are like TV commercials and start after the lights dim. They were loud and long and one was for Windows XP. That's what I'm talking about. One reader wrote to inform me that many large movie chains have gone bankrupt in the past 18 months, hence commercials. I'm going to investigate this a bit more…if you have any good links/info, please send them my way.