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October 18, 2020

Helpful Hints from joeeze: Small things that make life better

Checkbook: When you're doing the math, lose the pennies: round down to the nearest dollar and you'll always have more than you think in your account. This makes it way easier to do the math in your head, even if you're not as good as carrying as you used to be (speaking for myself).

Replacing batteries: Use a butter knife. More and more I'm finding it's difficult to remove batteries from devices. Some of it is undoubtedly age; it seems to me that the fit of batteries into their compartments is getting tighter and tighter as well. Regardless, using a butter knife as a pry tool means you don't have to go looking for a screwdriver or other aid and — equally important — you won't cut yourself. Lagniappe: if you do it in the kitchen, you'll be invoking Edwin H. Land's wonderful dictum: "Solve the problem with what's in the room."

Put things where you use them: Some years ago I got tired of always having to go to my office to staple or tape something. I started adding to my collection of staplers and tape dispensers and now I have them everywhere I might ever need to staple or tape something. You say "joe — that's a waste of money!" I say, think about it for a second: over time, you'll use exactly the same amount of tape and staples as if you had only one tape dispenser and stapler. You say, "But joe — what about the cost of all those additional staplers and tape dispensers?" I say, get over it: the pleasure of having what you need where you need it more than outweighs the initial setup costs.

If you find this not to be the case, let me know and I will refund twice what you paid for the additional staplers and tape dispensers; I will also feature your request in a bookofjoe post. Easy way to see your name in lights, now that I think about it....

October 18, 2020 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

'Long Way Up'

A superb 10-part chronicle on Apple TV+, "Long Way Up" stars Ewan McGregor and his best friend, Charley Boorman.

They embark on a 12,000-mile 100-day trip from the southern tip of Argentina to Los Angeles, California.

To make it really challenging, they ride Harley-Davidson's first-ever electric motorcycles, accompanied by a production crew driving Rivian's first-ever electric trucks.

Since much of the journey is through regions which have zero electric vehicle charging stations, the search for power creates a constant undercurrent of anxiety.

Lucky for you and me, it's their problem, not ours.

The scenery along their route is jaw-dropping, magnificent, a look at places most of us will otherwise never ever see either in person or on screen.

Tell you what: if Apple TV+ keeps up with shows like this and movies like "Greyhound," it's gonna succeed.

October 18, 2020 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

The 52 Stages of Insomnia — Marco Kaye

1Screen Shot 2020-10-14 at 4.55.42 PM


[via McSweeney's Internet Tendency]

October 18, 2020 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

'Le Grand Van Gogh' — Bruno Catalano


One of ten life-size bronze sculptures placed along the waterfront in Marseilles, France in 2013.

Back story here.

October 18, 2020 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

What is it?

Screen Shot 2020-10-15 at 7.55.39 AM

Answer here this time tomorrow.

Hint: bigger than a bread box.

Another: not a backpack left behind by the aliens in


"Roadside Picnic."

October 18, 2020 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)

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