It's Dai Time

Katie & Scott & Simon & Cecily.

Category: year26 (page 1 of 92)

I posted an entry each day during my 26th year of life.

Day 365: this is it

The last day.  The final piece of this year-long puzzle.  The coup de grace.  My 26th year of life.

In some ways, this was an ordeal.  There were days when I had to actively remember that I had a blog post to write and stumble to my computer, fighting off sleep, only to stare at an empty text field for fifteen minutes before going to look at random stuff on Facebook.

But in many ways, this wasnít that hard.  Once I got the ball rolling by not failing to write a post for the first month or two, it was pretty hard to miss a day.  It became part of my daily routine.  Much like Katie always takes her prenatal vitamins before bed, I always write my post before I go to sleep.  Iím sure having a small (but devoted?) readership that would judge me harshly if I slipped was also a good incentive.

Really, it became just another thing I did each day.

And I liked it.  I think Iíll be done now, for a while.  I think 365 daily posts in a row is enough.  While I enjoyed the routine of forcing myself to write each day (maybe something I can use in next yearís NanoWrimo?) and I loved the conversations it would occasionally bring up with the friends who read these posts, I think Iíd enjoy a nice break.  After all, any day now, the amount of free time I have is going to change forever.

I appreciate any of you who stuck with me for a whole year, anybody who joined midway through, or even if this is the first blog entry of mine youíve ever read.  Knowing that there were people who were interested in my rants and thoughts and ideas was great.

Thanks especially to my wife, Katie, for putting up with me coming to bed half an hour later than I would have otherwise for an entire year.

Thatís it.  We did it.

Day 364: birthday burger

Thereís only one day left until my birthday.  And the week that leads up to my birthday is great.

Why?  Because, as an avid joiner of restaurant mailing lists and ďe-clubs,Ē I get inundated with coupons and free meals or portions of meals from many different restaurants the week before the big day arrives.

It usually starts 7 days out, and none of them really require them to be used on the exact birthday anyway.  Itís more like all of mid-February is a big cheap eats zone.

My favorite consistent birthday treat is the Red Robin coupon, which nets me a free burger with no purchase necessary.  Whatís more, telling the waiter that itís your birthday also gets you a free sundae dessert.  Itís essentially a completely free meal for me, which is something that most other places canít match.

Being on the Dave and Busterís email list is also rewarding, although we donít go there all that much, as the nearest D&B is a good half hour drive away.  Still, I get small amounts of free game play to add to my card throughout the year, meaning that I rarely have to spend much to play games when I get there.

I like it when huge faceless corporations wish me a happy birthday a week early by giving me a coupon.  A free Arbyís shake with a combo?  Yes please!  A free milkshake or dessert from Armadillo Willyís?  Why not!  20% off DVDs from the Warner Brothers online store?  Thatís just what I always wanted!

Day 363: barf’n’poop

As we approach the end of this year-long experiment, I feel like these entries should be important and well-written. But we all know that’s not really going to happen.

Our cats are saucy little minxes. One will occasionally just barf around the house. Why does she do this? We’re not sure. It’s not an everyday occurrence, but it happens often enough to be disconcerting. Sometimes there’s a bit of food in there (is she eating too fast or swallowing hair with her food?), while sometimes it just seems to be stomach acid (is her throat just scratchy?).

Meanwhile, our other cat sometimes likes to take a dump somewhere unexpected. I think that has a valid explanation, though. I think that’s because I don’t scoop the litter enough and she gets a little angry that her litterbox is so full of poop.

I mainly bring this up today because I went to clean out the litterbox tonight (a task quite overdue) only to discover that Daisy had decided to relieve herself on our bathmat. As I tried to consider my options for taking care of this, Princess vomited three times in quick succession, quickly jumping away from the puddles she left behind out of either shame or surprise.

And I can’t blame our cats for doing these things. It’s not like they’re spiteful or trying to anger us deliberately. Princess probably enjoys ralphing as much as we enjoy cleaning it up. And Daisy only poops when the litterbox has gone uncleaned too long.

But it can be a bit much at the end of a tiring day.

Day 362: mail demons

Aside from the occasional package from Amazon or magazine, most of the postal mail we get nowadays is trash.

Itís coupons weíll never use, ads for local businesses we throw away without ever looking at, and credit card offers that I donít even bother opening anymore.  I suppose this has kind of always been the case, but in an age where my gmail spam filter sifts so much garbage out of my email inbox, I wish I had something similar for my other inbox.

Iíve tried getting off of different lists, but itís so much harder with postal mail.  You have to visit the specific website of the specific company that sends out that ad.  If they have an online unsubscription option, itís often just a series of text fields that you fill out, hit submit, and pray.

Often, the junk keeps coming.  Itís at a ratio now that actually hinders real mail.  Sure, weíll open up hand-addressed mail right away (the rare card that we get), but Iíve accidentally let updated bank or credit cards sit in their envelopes on our table at home because they look so similar to other envelopes that have nothing useful in them.

And opening postal mail takes so much time.  With an email, I can browse the subject line from my inbox and almost always know immediately if itís something worth opening.  If a postal envelope is something from one of my banks or credit card companies, itís hard to know.  Is it an important bill or identity theft notice?  Or is it an offer for a different card or those stupid balance transfer checks that are both useless and a huge ID theft risk?

One last gripe: Iím always paranoid about throwing away postal mail.  With emails, I know that as long I donít print a hard copy, no one who doesnít have access to my email account will ever see it.  With paper mail, I feel like I have to shred anything with the slightest amount of personal information, just to be safe.

I guess my question is: when can we start using the postal service only for package deliveries and turn to email for anything else?  Iíll make an exception for hand-written letters, especially from anyone under the age of 12.

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