Sunday, January 31, 2010

Word of the Day: Timeshafted

I just invented a word today: timeshaft.

I wrote up the definition for Urban Dictionary:

timeshaft: v. To catch up to real time on one's DVR (digital video recorder) or Tivo, preventing one from fast-forwarding through commercials or other uninteresting parts.

See also timeshafting or timeshafted.

Example: "I was watching the Grammy's on my DVR until I got timeshafted and had to watch Stevie Nicks and Taylor Swift perform in real time. I thought it would never end."

I hope they approve it. Until then, I'll be pressing fast-forward on my DVR and collecting royalties every time you use my word.



Update: It got approved!

Sunset from Indian Rock

Saturday, January 30, 2010

This will haunt me all day: Old Sex Ed video

Their eyes!! What is wrong with them?!!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Tradgic Misspelled Tattoos and U.S. Politics

Oh, how I enjoy the permanence of stupidity. Seriously, intelligence is fleeting; something like this, though, is forever, like a moronic diamond. Often I find these little HuffPo entries to undermine their journalistic integrity, but this one is a clear commentary on our moribund political environment in the U.S. We hear you, Arianna.

And, yes, I know "tragic" is misspelled above, but I'm hoping that "tradgey" can become a new slang term: "Miss Thang is just plain tradgey!" Please start using it in your everyday conversations.

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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The State of the Union & Sarcasm

Work Hard, Play Hard: Vice Magazine likes its men hard

Vice photo

Vice Magazine has torn down another taboo: erections in mainstream media. Its photoshoot "Work Hard Play Hard" has all the male models sporting erections (fashionably concealed, of course). All the designers were undoubtedly pleased to see that their fabric withstood the grueling stress tests. And I'm convinced all the woodies were produced by the Tom Ford cologne all the models were wearing. That stuff is like liquid testosterone!

The New Apple iPad

Thanks Moses

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Mahatma Gandhi on Homosexuality

Two gay Englishmen came to Gandhi in the 1930s and asked him what he thought of their relationship.

The Mahatma asked some questions and for a short time fell silent.

Then he said, “The greatest gift God gives us is another person to love.”

Placing the hands of each man in the other’s, he quietly and with a smile asked, “Who are we to question God’s choice?”

Minus all the "god" hoo-haw, I like this response.

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It will eat your eyes for dessert

I'm sorry, but this chimp from an SF Gate story today about house boats on Mission Creek FREAKS ME OUT. I'm pretty sure that it comes alive at night, rummages through the boat's fridge (only to find out my delicious eyes are not in the crisper), then it hops off the house boat in search of me and my ocular truffles. I guess I'll have to be extra careful walking around SoMa tonight.

Stay away, evil chimp. You can't have my eyes!!

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

I'm Back!!!!

Did you miss me? I hope the vacation pics weren't too annoying. I have to say that I had an amazing time. I'm sad that it's over, but the magic will live on. To my Kona Shore Gang, I want to say thanks for joining me.

Chopstix: the dinners were fantastic.
Kokonutz (aka Koko): you are a prodigy of POG, vodka and dark chocolate-covered macadamia nuts.
The Plan: without you, we'd still be sitting by the pool wondering where the day went.
Spittake: you make me laugh. 'Nuff said.
Lolo: you're like my twin, my brother, my doppelganger with a better tan. Without you, there is nothing. Oh, and you're crazy.

For now, though, it's back to real life. Tomorrow, I go back to work. Oh yes, work. I remember doing that in my thirties. Do you think I can stow away on the next plane back to Kona?

I've walked miles in these shoes

I bought these in Hawai'i in 2005. They served me well, but they've seen better days. So, I'm leaving them behind but keeping the memories. Here's to new journeys.

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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Kiholo Bay

Dear AT&T,

I get 3G reception here. Why can't I get it in my apartment in San Francisco?


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Kailua Bay

It's still sunny and blue here in case you were wondering.

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Bright lights, Big island

Behold! Kailua-Kona at night is the rival of Manhattan. Mostly because it's in the 70s here and they're freezing in New York. Tomorrow is my last full day on Hawai'i, so I'm staying up late playing cards and drinking Koko's delicious POG concoction. Tomorrow, I intend to spend time at the pool, read, brunch, shop a little, and eat some yummy pupus. Any souvenir requests?

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Friday, January 22, 2010

Pizzeria Zacchini in Kona

Our new friend Barb has a place called Pizzeria Zacchini and we decided to try it out tonight. Pizza!! I can't wait. Above is a shot of the wood-fired oven. Now that's hot.

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Mauna Kea beach

For a few thousand more dollars, we could have stayed here. Instead, we'll just enjoy the beach.

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

New View

We have switched locales for the rest of the week, so we have a new view of downtown Kona. No sunset viewing from this lanai, but it'll do.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Kehena Beach: Nudists, Hippies and Nude Hippies Welcome

This morning before 10 AM, our friend Bob took us to Kehena Beach near Kalapana in Puna. Secluded and requiring and little hike down a rocky path, this beach is a local fave for the residents. I think it may be my favorite beach so far. Fine black sand, remote (I think there were about 6 people there), sun rising over the ocean, and a cute hippie doing naked yoga on the beach. It was the most natural, relaxing place I've been on the island except for Pu'uhonua. Mahalo for taking us, Bob!

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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Iced tea at Huli Sue's

We're taking a day trip to Hilo side with stops in Waimea, Waipi'o Valley, Akaka Falls and more. But for now, it's lunchtime at Huli Sue's. Tea and fish tacos. Yum!

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Monday, January 18, 2010

On a white sandy beach in Hawai'i

Today took us to Makalawena Beach. This required a short trip out of Kona then a hellish 1.8 mile journey down an "unimproved" road to a makeshift parking lot in the middle of an a'a lava field. Then we hiked for 20-25 minutes to the best part of the beach.

The beach was beautiful, but the clouds rolled in and covered the sun a bit. Fooled, I neglected to apply my SPF 420 and may have violated my Banana Boat contract. Plus, both Rand and Yasu cut their feet in the rocks. Oh the humanity!

After the beach, we went to the Kona Inn Cafe and enjoyed cocktails and a late lunch/early dinner. After a quick trip to ABC for some supplies, we came home, made some maitais and seabreezes, and played Balderdash. It's a good life.

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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Hapuna Beach

The sun, the sand, the sea. It's a good thing.

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Lunch is ready

But, we're packing it up and heading to the beach. So, put your hunger in hold for now. Yasu's sandwiches will have to wait. Next stop, Hapuna.

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Saturday, January 16, 2010

Maitai #2

My official birthday party is tonight. Six more friends are joining us. First, though, we're having maitais at Huggo's on the Rocks. Cheers!

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For Jake

In your memory at Pu'uhonua o Honaunau--the place of refuge. Watch over him for us, Pele. Mahalo nui loa.

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For my sister

Wish you could be here, sis. I saw these and thought of you. Remember posing with these at my place 5 years ago? Good times. Aloha nui loa.

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Friday, January 15, 2010


Yasu is cooking again and we're eating on the lanai. What a life. I hope you all have/had a 40th like this.

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Courtney's here!!

Time for another sunset and a few more seabreezes.

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Iced tea & Sarcasm (and Murakami) in paradise

It's basically perfect. Wish you were here.

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Good morning Kona!

I slept amazingly well last night, lulled to sleep by the crashing waves and the seabreezes--the drink, that is. They were Renee's idea and they were great. Yasu cooked a delicious dinner of three kinds of local fish with leeks, carrots, an amazing watercress salad, and fingerling potatoes. Then we played Euchre. Each team won once.

Today, Courtney arrives, then we're going to Hapuna beach. It's going to be rough, but I'll try to enjoy it.

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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Thank you, Pele, for an amazing day

And thanks to all of you for all the kind words and hateful remarks on my birthday. I will cherish them all. My friend Courtney arrives tomorrow and the Kona Gang will be complete. First stop, Hapuna Beach. Then, the island is ours!!


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Always begin a long trip with...CAFFEINE!!

Clearly, I needed it this morning. Those circles under my eyes are lovely!

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My View


And so it begins. Here's to my bacchanalian birthday!! Thanks, Alaska Airlines for the free drink.

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We have landed

Welcome to Hawai'i!

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In-flight movie: All About Steve

Let's face it. Sandra Bullock is the all-American actress. She was in "Speed" for god's sake, and you don't get more American than a speeding bus that defies gravity by leaping over an unfinished section of a highway while simultaneously carrying a bomb that miraculously doesn't explode and kill the nascent romance that Hollywood demands from its main characters. Now THAT'S America!!

"All About Steve" is a different story. And a worse story. I believe it's the worst movie I've seen in years. From the gaping plot holes to the hammy acting, this "film" has it all. Sandra may have portrayed the wacky individualist well, but since I don't know any quirky cruciverbalists who stalk their blind dates across the country, it just seemed sad and unbelievable.

Skip this flick.

(oh, I forgot to mention that the BF liked it and cried during several scenes. But I don't judge, Judy.)

Airplane Notes: The People Behind Me

Currently, the people in seats behind me are engaged in a social experiment to see if three human beings can carry on an inane loud conversation for six hours straight. They're nearing the completion of hour #2, so I think there's a chance of success. Unless, of course, I pelt them with my macadamia nuts and try to strangle them with my headphones.

Seriously, if you're in a confined space for several hours with a hundred strangers, have the decency to moderate your normal volume.

Oh, and that baby is quiet for now, but it was screaming earlier. I was dreaming of alternative uses for the emergency exit and lavatory.

Hoc vinum Falernum annorum quadragenta est. Bene aetatem fert.

A Woman of 40

I turned 40 this morning. My uncle used to say, "If I had known I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself." Luckily, I don't feel like that. I'm 40, I'm feisty, and I can kick! Still, the number 40 looms large both in my and the public consciousness. So many assumptions, so many expectations.

Well, 40, I don't know about you, but I'm giving up those assumptions as my 2010 resolution. I prefer the t-shirt that says "I'm not 40. I'm 18 with 22 years of experience." I like being puerile and dismissive of authority and ironic about all things serious. Why should that magically change on this date?

It won't. I have too much caffeine in these cells and too much time invested in this persona to slow down and scrap it all. Responsibility be damned! I will continue to eschew the onus of adulthood. Long live the youthful irresponsibility that is Todd X!!

And happy birth-month to my fellow January babies and Capricorns. We rock.

Also, if anyone asks, I'm really 32 this year (29 in soft, low light and a strong vodka filter).

Ready for takeoff

I'm on the plane and ready for hours of fun over the Pacific. Talk to you soon!

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At the airport: The adventure begins

Here's the Kona gang (minus Courtney) at the airport. Aren't they bright and shiny for 6:30 AM?

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January 14, 2010

Jan 14 2010

It's official. I'm expired. Pour me down the drain.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Haiti: Do you know Jessical Badio?

If anyone knows Jessical Van Garrett Badio, please let me know if she is still in Haiti and/or her condition. Her son's name is Christophe Badio. Her husband was a respected agronomist. My thoughts are with them and the rest of Haiti.

Is this what 40 looks like?

I went to high school with these folks. They were high school sweethearts, got married and, apparently, stayed that way. Shocking!! Congrats to them.

But, and be honest with me here, do they look like my generational peers? Did all my time in the diffuse Seattle sunlight save me years of wrinkles and skin damage? Not that these two look terrible. I think they look happy and healthy. But they look 40 to me. And I'll be 40 tomorrow, but I don't think I look 40 (apart from the gray hair). Good lord, could this post be more self-centered and whiny? But have people heard of sunscreen and skin cream?!!!

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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Cirque du Soleil and Ovo

Ovo was fun tonight. I saw people dressed as bugs do amazing things with their bodies. A woman did a handstand on another woman's foot who was also doing a handstand. And the trampolines and rock climbing wall bit was the best.

But. Yes, that pesky but. Ovo and its egg tormented me. I kept expecting something to pop out of the egg and do somersaults. Alas, no. The egg was just an egg. Don't they know I need metaphors!!

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Fire hydrant, SoMa

Found on Townsend between 2nd & 3rd in San Francisco.

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Guess what I'm doing tonight?


I hope the scary Canadian clowns don't kill me. Wish me "bon chance."

Monday, January 11, 2010

Is Ted Olson my new hero? The Proposition 8 Trial in SF

Judge Walker: why shouldn’t courts stay out of this as Mr. Cooper says?

Olson: That’s why we have courts, to protect those who are discriminated against, when their children can’t go to school because of their skin color. We would not need a constitution if we left everything to the political process. We’d just let the majority prevail and that’s a good thing about democracy, but it’s not so good if you are different, new. It causes gays and lesbians unrelenting pain. We have the courts to take our worthy, upstanding citizens who are being hurt to be protected by the courts. That’s why we are here today.”

I hope you're finding some time to review what's happening in San Francisco's Federal Courthouse this week. The Prop 8 trial actually seems to be delving into the issues that lesbians and gay men have to deal with on a daily basis, using the lens of marriage rights to reveal the state-sponsored discrimination that the opponents of Prop 8 want to eliminate.

And Ted Olson appears to be one of our best legal advocates. I'm not sure what to think of you, Ted. I couldn't believe the rabbit you pulled out of your hat to get George W. Bush elected. This, however, might just redeem you a bit.

Take a look at Prop8TrialTracker. It's a great resource. Court will be back in session tomorrow at 8:30 AM.

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Goodbye Jake

mark and jake

My nephew Jake passed away this morning, so it's a sad day for my family. He just turned 20 this weekend, but he had been struggling for months with a crazy illness that took him and our family by surprise. In the end, the HLH (Haemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis) was too much for him--for all of us really. Now, I'm just worried about my brother and his wife. They've been through so much with all the ups and downs of hope and despair. The pain of outliving a child must be nearly unbearable, but I hope they know we're all ready to support and comfort them.

If you have a second or two today, give Jake a moment of silence and reflection or lift a glass in his honor. Then do something nice for someone--friend, stranger, family or foe. Smile unexpectedly. Hold the door. Leave a quarter at the car wash. Give her the bigger slice of pie. I think Jake would have liked all those things.

The Best Use of Post-Its Ever: Super Mario Jesus

Thanks to Matthew Paul Turner for sharing.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Jane Lynch from "Glee" on minority rights


"Shouldn't there be safeguards against the majority voting on the rights of a minority?" Lynch wonders. "If people voted on civil rights in the 60s, it would have never happened. It took somebody like [President] Lyndon Johnson going, 'F all of you! I'm going to do this.'" She pauses for a moment, then says, "Obama won't do it. He's a huge disappointment to me."

I <3 her even more now. Long live Sue Sylvester!

Dreaming of a Tablet

If Apple can produce something like this, then I may have to get ready to stand in line. This concept video from the Bonnier Group is pretty convincing--and beautiful. I can see us all interacting with media with devices like this in the near future. Newspaper and magazine producers should support this technology. I think a rich, interactive and mobile experience with high quality, curated content is exactly what readers want.

Mag+ from Bonnier on Vimeo.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Guts. Honor. Toast.

Trouble Coffee in San Francisco

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Neti Pot Nightmare: The Truth About Alternative Nose Cleansing


According to a NYTines report, 3.8% of all home-based drownings are caused by neti pots. As a staunch believer in all statistics and web-based knowledge, I felt it was my duty to tell you all that these things are downright dangerous. As I type, my BF is in the bathroom using one. I can hear the gagging and gurgling sounds. Yes, I should be dialing 911, but instead, like Cassandra, I'm shouting into the cybervoid, trying to save you from yourselves. Stop pouring saline or herbal tea into your sinuses. It's just gross and wrong. And DEADLY!! You have been warned.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Predicting the Death of the Book Isn't New

I read this today and wanted to share it with all my book-loving readers and friends. Kindle be damned! The book will survive!!

Robert Gray: Publishing Trends of Futures Past

Forecasting publishing industry trends for the new year and the new decade is an irresistible and ubiquitous exercise these days. Perhaps it's only natural, then, that I honor my habit of glancing out the back window of the digital express caboose (Shelf Awareness, June 19, 2009) and offer, courtesy of the archives at Harper's magazine, my own list of a half-dozen publishing trends of futures past:

1. January 1850 Harper's featured an excerpt from the North British Review on a "common complaint that the publishers make large fortunes and leave the authors to starve--that they are, in fact, a kind of moral vampire, sucking the best blood of genius, and destroying others to support themselves."

2. May 1883 George William Curtis observed that "one-half of the books published each year in the United States fail to return their cost, and that one-half of the remainder bring no profit, leaving the cost of supporting the publishing machinery of the country to be borne by the publishers' share of the profits of one-fourth of the books issued."

3. June 1948 In "The Book Club Controversy," Merle Miller wrote about the recent appearance of "a smoothly designed advertisement announcing the formation of still another book club" even though were already "more than fifty clubs" in competition. This particular organization, however, was called the Blue Sky Book Club and hoped to lure members with an offer that may sound familiar to e-book enthusiasts: "You may now receive all the books published... over 10,000 a year FREE." These books weren't the only lure, however, because members would also receive "in compact digest form, the synopses, plot analyses, and YOUR OWN OPINION of these books." It was, of course, a gag with satiric bite.

4. October 1959 The anonymous author of a "Letter to a Young Man About to Enter Publishing" cautioned that even though "you want to go into publishing because you love good books and would like to help produce them... the first thing you should know about is the curious attitude of the American reader."

Strong evidence was then presented, including Edward Weeks, writing in the Atlantic Monthly's that there were about a million "discriminating readers" in the U.S., and "this number has not increased with the population; it has not increased appreciably since 1920." The London Economist suggested "even before television, Americans had not acquired the habit of reading good books. It has been estimated that since 1946, spending on books and maps has declined from 15 to only 10% of total outlays on recreation." And Dan Lacy of the American Book Publishers Council observed that the "basic nature of the trade-book audience is well known; it is largely urban; somewhat more women than men buy books; a dominant proportion of the reading public is in the higher professional and economic brackets; perhaps about 2% of the people account for a vital percentage of trade-book purchases."

5. July 1963 An article noted that Geoffrey Wagner, a British novelist living in the U.S., believed American publishing had become big business and this was a "calamity," since "most small publishers of interest... are being swallowed up by a few big firms. The survivors, he claims, are adopting a 'blockbuster technique' which has 'resulted in astronomical pre-publication deals, movie tie-ins, etc.'"

6. August 1985 Harper's offered a forum--"Will the Book Survive?"--based on a discussion that had been held at the ABA convention in San Francisco, and noted that in the previous year, American publishers had released "40,000 new titles, the vast majority of them, ignored by the great spotlight of publicity, were seen by almost nobody but the author and his twelve closest friends."

One of the panelists, William P. Edwards, v-p for new business development at B. Dalton Bookseller, observed: "Today there are new customers out there--the baby boomers, who fueled the dramatic growth of the bookstore chains and the large trade publishing houses. These younger customers have different views about format. They grew up with paperbacks; they give them as gifts. It's inevitable that during the next ten years bookstores will extend their franchise. Sure, we sell information and education; but the vast majority of books are bought as entertainment. Virtually the whole mass-market industry is devoted to entertainment. We are going to see bookstores moving heavily into audio cassettes--in effect, books one can 'read' while riding a bike or driving a car--and into videotapes as well, exercise 'books,' 'cookbooks,' whatever. It's already happening. After all, in buying a book, people are making an entertainment choice, and if we ignore that and stubbornly deny that these other forms belong in bookstores, we're going to drive away the younger customers. Diversity in format is important, and these products belong in bookstores."--Robert Gray (column archives available at Fresh Eyes Now)


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Thursday, January 7, 2010

FYI: Jesus wrote the U.S. Constitution

Throw out all you learned from high school, college, and the trivia game at your local watering hole. According to this moving painting, Jesus--NOT James Madison (or Rush Limbaugh)--wrote the document at the heart of the American experiment. So, I have a few questions for him.

1. Why would a perfect document need Amendments?

2. Why were some people only worth three-fifths of other people? Were they heathens?

3. Why so many commas in this sentence? It's just confusing: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

4. What did you have against alcohol in 1919? And what brand of vodka made you change your mind in 1933?

5. Are you American now? Does that mean we win by default no matter what?

And we're back!!

Yes, is back online and in Google's good graces. Who loves Sergei? We do, we do!!

Fix your favorites and point your browsers back to our hot URL. And thanks for sticking around and reading. You all rock. 

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Ongoing Blogger Fail of 2010

I'm sorry to say that I'm still struggling with the Google Sites mishap that has disconnected from this blog. My fingers are crossed that the appeals I've made on the Blogger help forum and the email I sent to the Google Apps support will yield positive results.

Until then, how are you all doing? Is 2010 all you hoped it would be? Are you freaked out that the sea lions have abandoned their resting places at Pier 39? Is it a sign of the big one? A tsunami? Global warming? Some bad clam chowder?!! Or were they just tired of "Care Not Cash" and wandered up the coast in search of a handout? Since I had a tidal wave dream recently, I'm not counting any chickens until they've hatched, but I think we're relatively safe.

Other than my fear of sea lion prognostication and the general dread of going back to work after a long break, I've been pretty mellow lately. Fear not, though. As my birthday approaches (along with a long-planned journey back to Hawai'i), I'm sure I'll have more to grouse about.

Until then, complain amongst yourselves.

And happy new year!