Everyone’s A Critic.


I’ve worked at home for over a decade. I’m wired to work from home and I do well working in my own office with minimal distraction. My career has advanced nicely while working at home.

I heard a news story recently indicating the mayor of Washington, D.C. has been lobbying the U.S. government to have government employees work from offices instead of working from home. Not to increase productivity or anything, no, this is so the employees in question can patronize the downtown businesses in D.C.

This is why an economy based on services and not centered on manufacturing is a bad thing. It shouldn’t be the responsibility of productive employees working from home to prop up businesses in a retail area that are struggling because of hybrid work policies. I believe in small businesses and we should support them in any way. However, small business owners should always be reviewing their business plans and going after the next big thing.

Quality Control.

For a while, there were major quality control issues with the manufacture of license plates in the Empire State. New York has been slowly replacing their license plates over the past few years with a new black-on-white design, but it’s still quite common to see license plates shredding and/or decomposing on vehicles.

What’s interesting is license plates made 20 years ago (beginning with “A” or “B” on passenger cars) are still quite intact and looking good. It’s these plates beginning with a “G” that are having issues.

It’s not always a great idea to go with the lowest bidder.

Dear Apple, Part Two.

Dear Apple,

What are you doing with HomeKit? Do you know? Does anyone on your team know? Because Siri doesn’t know. After the latest update (to 16.3?) things will work in the morning but absolutely not in the evening. Or vice versa. Or my HomePods will no longer recognize my voice. Enter password. Enter your password. Enter your password on every HomePod you own. Enter again.

Apple could have knocked it out of the park with HomeKit and the associated HomePod line of hardware. But no, it’s taken a back seat and no one knows why. Promises of things getting better and easier to navigate and more reliable fall by the wayside.

We need more love for HomeKit. Full stop. I want my home automation to live in the better security of iCloud but more importantly I want it to be reliable.

It’s not reliable right now.

Do better.

Pressure Cooker.

We’re watching this reality show called “Pressure Cooker”. It’s on Netflix. We haven’t watched a reality show in years but apparently the formula hasn’t changed much in the decades we’ve had to endure these things.

It’s basically “Big Brother” with a smattering of cooking. Cooking is not the focus at all. There’s mean contestants and a Red Room for confessions and a horrible person being a backstabbing contestant because that’s what’s celebrated in the world these days.

I’m not enjoying the show anymore but I’ll watch it for the rest of the family. I couldn’t care less what happens to these people. They’re probably back at Blimpies.

Dr. Strange.

Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness poster

Photo from wikipedia

We watched “Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness” the other night. I enjoy spending time like this with the family and as I’ve enjoyed the majority of movies and other media in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, I was looking forward to this. I had liked the first Dr. Strange movie quite a bit.

This one didn’t do a lot for me.

Director Sam Raimi is known for his work in the horror genre, and there were some elements from that present in this movie. I know plenty of folks that enjoy horror, but it’s not my thing at all, so that probably tainted my experience a little bit. I also wondered if I was just getting sick of The Scarlet Witch. Her storyline seemed a little one-dimensional to me. The experience felt a little flat. Many of the special effects were cool but I did see a few leaks of green screen halo around characters. I found that odd.

Maybe I’m just getting old.  I prefer my superhero movies to be a little more lighthearted. And I would think the MCU would be consistent on their “multiverse” rules from movie to movie, for example, why was there a completely different Spiderman in each multiverse, but Dr. Strange looked the same across the multiverses?

I should probably stop thinking too hard about these movies and just enjoy the popcorn.


I have been on a work meeting, non-stop mind you, since 6:00 AM. I am writing this entry at 4:21 PM. Non-stop. Breakfast at my desk. Lunch at my desk. The meeting continues as I type this. I’ve cancelled my flight for today to accommodate.


The pandemic has really screwed up our television habits. Back in 2020, near the beginning of the pandemic when everyone was passing the lockdown period by making bread and reviving parlor games, we were introduced to the Amazon Prime television series “Upload”. The show featured “life” in 2030, where society had figured out how to upload loved ones that have passed to a digital afterlife. This digital heaven came at a cost and showed us, in a comedic way, the class divide, even after we had passed on. Risks of being downgraded, limited bandwidth, etc., came to those that didn’t have the funds to keep their after life existence going in the digital world. Earl and I binged the series in May of 2020 and were looking forward to the next season when it was announced season two was coming along.

So, with the pandemic and all, season two was made during COVID and the production followed all the recommended health procedures. Perfect. Except, to save money or maybe because of the extra expense of the pandemic precautions, production houses are now making shorter seasons. Back in the 50s and 60s, a season could be over 30 episodes. By the 80s and 90s we were down to 22. With the streaming services were down to 10 and this latest run of “Upload” has seven episodes. “The Expanse” had six episodes in its last season. Perhaps it’s an Amazon Prime thing. Amazon doesn’t really have that much money, I guess.

So “Upload” season two followed the same storyline and season one, was clever but not as clever, and had a little bit of a meandering thing going on. I didn’t really enjoy the season as much as I remembered enjoying season one nearly two years ago. I still recommend it for the geek value, but a certain spark seemed to be missing.

If you’re looking to binge 3 1/2 hours of entertainment, go for it.so a bunch of precautions were smartly followed and

Power Couple.

Photo of Carrie Coon and Morgan Spector as Bertha and George Russell in ”The Gilded Age”.

I guess I enjoy power couples of any century. As a fan of ”Downton Abbey”, I was eager to see HBO’s ”The Gilded Age” by Downton writer Julian Fellowes. The seventh of eight episodes in the first season was released for streaming this evening. I’m happy to know the series has been renewed for a second season.

”The Gilded Age” takes place in New York in the late 1890s, and it’s all about money and status and moving up the society ladder. George and Bertha Russell have built a grand home with their new money and she is eager to find her place in society amongst the Astors, the Vanderbuilts, and other well known names of the time period. The sets and costumes are gorgeous, there’s familiar elements from ”Downton Abbey” for those interested in the Upstairs/Downstairs story and Christine Baranski isn’t half bad as an American version of Maggie Smith’s Dowager Countess of Grantham. (She’s called Aunt Agnes or Mrs. Van Rhijn).

It took me a couple episodes to warm up to the show, but by episode three everyone seems to be settling into their roles. Mr. Spector and Ms. Coon have been hitting it out of the park since we first met them in episode one. I love the power couple dynamic and they both seem to be reveling in their roles.

After this evening’s episode, with a little comedic twist at the end (no spoilers here), I‘m sad to see that next week’s episode is the last of this season.

I’m already looking forward to season two.


Taken on Valentine’s Day three years ago. Remember when we used to do things like this in public? Good times.


When I first saw this photo pass by on social media I thought it was part of an Onion article or something. Admittedly I don’t have much interest in the Olympics this time around; I haven’t really been interested in the Olympics since they started happening every other year, so I haven’t paid much attention to what’s been going on.

But I had no idea that the Men’s Freestyle Skiing was on a man made slope next to a bunch of cooling towers from a closed down manufacturing plant. For some reason I thought the Winter Olympics were always head in places with mountains and snow and the like. You know, like Lake Placid, New York or the Alps or something. But in the middle of a manufacturing district of a Communist country? Why?