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May 18, 2013

Powerball: Only 3 hours till I'm $600 million richer

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What, you don't think I'm gonna win?

As I write these words at 8 p.m. today, my chance is every bit as good as anyone else's in the universe.

So what if that chance is 1 in 175 million?

I've got 10 chances, anyway, not just one: up top, my soon-to-be winning ticket, being blessed by Gray Cat.

You can't buy that at any price.

But I digress.

As Terry-Thomas remarked about playing the lottery: "You know you won't win — but you might."

Precisely.

You're telling me the hours of daydreaming today about what I'd do with that kind of money aren't worth $2?

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You, my friend, have forgotten how to dream.

May 18, 2013 at 08:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Minimalist Hard-Shell Wallet

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Reviewed by Pete Forde in today's Cool Tools as follows:

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The Jimi Wallet is a minimalist hard-shell plastic case design.

It's the perfect antidote to the "Costanza Wallet" syndrome my dad had, because it forces you to discard all but what you really need.

The Jimi has room for exactly three pieces of plastic, a security access card, and a money clip that holds 5-6 bills. That's it.

The Jimi pops open with a bit of pressure applied to a few dimples. You can do it easily with one hand without looking.

Jimi

I have owned several Jimis over the last decade. The build quality is excellent. Realistically, I find that I get three years of daily use out of one before the plastic joint starts to fray. I am okay with this, because it gives me the opportunity to get a new color.

I've got nothing against slim leather or cloth wallets, but the Jimi is what works for me. It was the wallet equivalent of coming in from the cold. I can say with no exaggeration that I get a minimum of one compliment a week on it when I pull it out in stores or restaurants. People see it and intuitively get that it’s an evolution.

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Zillions of patterns and colors: $14.95.

May 18, 2013 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Expert's Expert: Sometimes it's better to confess than to maintain your innocence

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Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control agent David Huff, in today's Charlottesville Daily Progress front page story (above), had some excellent advice for perps caught using trying to purchase alcohol with a fake ID: If you're caught, admit your real identity.

Doing so is a Class 1 misdemeanor, "far less likely to follow you around."

"Huff warned fake ID users to own up if they get caught. Telling a police officer or ABC agent that the identity on a fake ID is real is a crime of moral turpitude, which carries a 'stain,' Huff said."

"Covered by Virginia Code section 18.2-204.1, possessing a fake ID with the intention of establishing a false identity implies deviousness, and can preclude someone from obtaining a security clearance and will show up on a background check."(my italics).

"Virginia Code section 4.1-305 prohibits someone under 21 from buying alcohol with 'an altered, fictitious, facsimilie or simulated license to operate a motor vehicle.'"

"People charged with that crime are far more likely to received first-time offender status, be able to plead to a lower charge, and avoid jail time, Huff said."

Fair warning.

May 18, 2013 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

What is it?

35_apertura_Tesoro copy

Answer here this time tomorrow.

Hint: smaller than a bread box.

Another: made in Italy.

A third: ceramic.

May 18, 2013 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Alain de Botton: The Glass of Life is Half Empty

From Open Culture: "Here are a few basic truths: life is essentially meaningless; your hard work won't dictate where your life goes; you will be struck down by death; and your loved ones and your achievements will whither and turn to dust. A grim way to look at things perhaps. But a long line of philosophers, starting with the Stoics, have seen wisdom in taking a dim view. As Alain de Botton points out, a pessimistic outlook reduces our expectations, our envy, our disappointment, and it creates room for emotional upside and healthier life decisions."

May 18, 2013 at 04:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Experts' Expert: Gardening Knife

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Anne Marie Chaker's May 15 "Just One Thing" Wall Street Journal feature focused on Jonathan Wright — a professional gardener at the Chanticleer Public Garden in Wayne, Pennsylvania — and his indispensable Lesche Digging Tool (above).

Excerpts follow.

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Jonathan Wright is a self-identified "plant geek" with a soft spot for summer-flowering dahlias.

His Lesche Digging Tool, which he says he never gardens without… [is a] 12-inch knifelike tool [with] a serrated edge, which makes it useful for cutting and dividing perennials or even twine. Mr. Wright says the Lesche knife is a good substitute for a trowel when tucking bulbs or small plants into the ground. The action is slightly different from a more labor-intensive digging motion: "I stab it into the ground and pull toward me," he says, creating a cavity in the soil that makes planting "three times as fast" — significant when there are, say, hundreds of bulbs on the to-do list.

The knife's tip makes a handy wedge for lifting weeds or even pavers, which sometimes require resetting or weeding between. In the vegetable garden, the flat edge of the knife makes it easy to draw a straight line in the soil for seeding.

The steel tool's maker is W.W. Manufacturing Co. Inc., a Bridgeton, N.J., supplier of rakes, spades and other gardening and landscaping equipment. A plate just below the handle "guards your hand from sliding down" onto the blade, says Ingrid Hawk, co-owner of the company, which was founded by her father, Walter Lesche, in the mid-1950s and known as Walt's Welding.

Mr. Wright says he was given the tool when he started gardening at Chanticleer as a student fellow in 2001. "One of the gardeners said, 'Here, take this, it will be your new best friend,' " he recalls. Today, he is in charge of designing and planting terraces surrounding the mansion on the 47-acre property. "It did replace any other trowel or weeding tool I had," he says.

Another benefit: The red handle makes it easy to find if he leaves it in the garden. But even if that doesn't work, "I've bought a backup," he says.

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$36.95.

May 18, 2013 at 12:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

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