Wednesday, June 23, 2010

My Latest Toy, I mean TOOL

If you know anything about me, you know that I get really excited about technology.  I don't know how it happened or when it happened, but for the longest time I've been blessed (or cursed, depends on how you look at it) with a knack for all things digital.

So I had to practice a great deal of restraint not to run out and get the latest gadget from Apple, the iPad.  Why?  Because I knew if I purchased it myself, I would be given one as part of my job duties.  So I waited.  And lusted after friend's devices.  And waited some more. Finally, there was a work justification for one and they asked if I could "play" with one to help figure out how to manage and secure.  Hmmm.  Let me think about that for all of one second!!

So my thoughts?  Well, I'll have to give away my Kindle now.  The Kindle app is available on the iPad and the iPhone and my investment in the *books* is saved.  The iPad's screen is just gorgeous.  Now it's a matter of figuring out what apps I need.  Some I've already purchased for my iPhone and will transfer.  What I have on there currently, in addition to the standard apps:
  •  Wyse's Pocket Cloud application.  Gives me a remote into my Vista desktop as well as servers that I support.  A must need for an IT pro.
  • app.  I'm a comparision shopper!  Plus if I find a great deal I can use 1-Click to purchase.
  • World Series of Poker.  Because sometimes those layovers are long.  (Meetings too!)
  • IMDb application.  Window into all things movies.
  • Strip Design - a new application for me.  Can turn my pictures into a comic strip with the ability to edit.  Really cute!
  • Amazon Kindle
  • ABC Player
Watching videos on this thing is a delight.  The fact that it's so light means my laptop may stay in the bag more often than not.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Sunday Hike

Today I went on a day-trip by myself, to Muir Woods in Marin - just north of San Francisco.  Everywhere I looked there seemed to be couples sharing the experience together, making memories.  I never really had that in my marriage.  Most of our free time was spent with my ex doing his own thing (golfing, traveling, hanging out with the guys) while I took care of home base and slowly grew disillusioned with the whole coupledom thing.  I was lucky to have a small, brief taste recently of what a relationship *could* be like.  It didn't work out, but I'm still trying to deal with the lessons I learned from it.

I learned that I really need to be true to who I am and what matters to me. I think I have a better understanding of what kind of woman I can be and what I need to be happy.  (I'm not certain I'll find it but my friends tell me to keep the faith!)  Sometimes we want things that aren't meant for us - we just don't find out until later.  I'm keeping a mental list now of what's really important to me, both short-term and long-term.  And sometimes there's a list of things just to get me through the day... 

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Hey You - Why Aren't You on Twitter?

I originally thought Twitter was a waste of time (something I have precious little of anyway), but my company asked me to set up an account so I could keep an eye on some of the brands that we have that started "tweeting". At that time all I knew was Ashton Kutcher apparently is God of Twitter and you only have 140 characters to say what's on your mind.

 What I've found is Twitter is an addictive little bugger. You don't even have to tweet (post) but there's value in just following others. Companies like Safeway, Lowe's, United Airlines, etc. have set up shop on Twitter. You can get updates on sales and promotions, participate in contests, and receive notifications on flight delays, special events. It's free, so what do you have to lose? Let me know if you are on Twitter or interested in starting out. You can follow me there too - I'm not quite the social commentator that Ashton is (and he has 5+ million followers to my two dozen) but hey I'll stack my geekiness against his any day!  :)

Some Interesting Folks I'm Following (in no particular order):
  1. @VikingsFootball - my favorite football team.
  2. @UnitedAirlines @SouthwestAir @JetBlueCheeps @VirginAmerica - one of these days, I *will* take a spur of the moment trip!!
  3. @flyfromSFO - this guy tracks all the specials out of various airports around the country.  If you know your 3-character airport code, just replace the last 3 to get info specific to that location.
  4. @Safeway - notifications on special deals, lots of RT of people that are following them.  You can always search for your fav grocery outlet and they may be on Twitter too.
  5. @RedTapeChron - this is Bob Sullivan from MSNBC.  He writes about consumer topics and is a great resource.
  6. @wilw @sheldoncooper @rainnwilson - remember, I'm a geek at heart.  I don't follow Lindsay Lohan, Kardashians, or any "celebrities" whose claim to fame involves a sex-tape, a reality show, or marriage to someone who has a sex-tape or a reality show. 

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Learning to Practice What I Preach

Some of you may remember last year the controvery over a digitally altered Ralph Lauren ad with a model so Photoshopped, it was laughable.  Well, laughable and at the same time sobering.  Recently the model, Filippa Hamilton, was being interviewed over the whole broohaha and while sometimes it's hard to feel sympathy for an obviously gorgeous woman, in these circumstances I did. I also thought: damn, if she's not good enough, what about us mere mortals?

I've had a couple of recent conversations with some girlfriends and the topic of weight and body shape and expectations came up.  It seems like on one hand we are trying to educate our daughters on being healthy and that beauty comes from within, and yada yada yada.  On the other hand, there's a lot of us that are beating ourselves up because we don't look like what we see in magazines.  For me it's a constant battle, because since I was in high school I've struggled with eating disorders.  I'll skip over all the history and the why's and where-for's, but I'm acutely aware that while I'm preaching to my daughter a postive message, I haven't internalized it myself completely. 

So I was surprised during a chat with my friend that I made the comment about a thin celebrity: "That can't look good naked.  Seriously, would a guy find that sexy?" Then while browsing about the Ralph Lauren ad, I came across a discussion board: comments where a male poster wrote:  "Anyone who browses porn magazines or videos for five minutes will quickly realize that the US male ideal of feminine beauty looks nothing like the anorexic women portrayed in women's magazines. By and large, women are responsible for making other women feel bad about themselves in this country.

Ok, leaving off the whole *porn* thing, that comment really resonated with me.  I'm a 39 year-old 5'1" mumble-mumble-lb woman.  I've had three kids and unless I undergo plastic surgery, I will never have Double-D's or a Brazilian butt. I will never have a super-model's lengthy legs or saucy pout and perfect nose.  My goal is to accept that and be the best *me* I can be, in a healthy way.  I pledge to stop nit-picking every flaw I see in the mirror - especially in front of my daughter.

I need to practice what I preach.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

This Ain't Rocket Science...

A lot of people are still intimidated by technology but with tools today, you really don't have to have be a geek like me to get rolling on the 'net. A few essentials, a good search engine and you can pretty much do anything I can...
  1. A decent computer with an internet connection.  Don't get conned by the GeekSquad at Best Buy, you don't need to spend a truckload of $$ for a computer that will pretty much suit your needs.  And you can always ask someone non-partial.  Oh, say... me :)
  2. Google.  Don't know the answer? You can probably find it here. 
  3. iPhone. Yes, I was late to the game on this tool, but I wouldn't trade this for any other tech tool I have.  The AppStore is incredible.  There's apps for just about everything!
  4. An open mind and a fearless heart.  Don't let anyone say you can't learn or do something just because you haven't in the past.


A good friend and I were IMing today and I realized that there's a while world of content out there that I want to share, but I've kind of pigeonholed myself into just speaking to one facet of my life.  Well, I'm going to change that, starting today.  Let's lighten things up, let's provoke, let's *live*.