My current obsessions

Disclaimer:  I have not been compensated in any way for the opinions that follow.  However, that is not because of any moral principle.  I’d gladly accept money in the future to write about your product in a glowing way.

The Soda Stream

Do you like water?  Do you like seltzer?  Do you like things that make a loud buzzing noise when you press a button?  Do you like instant satisfaction?  Do you like to have your mind blown?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, then the soda stream is for you.  Unless you answered no to the second question.  The soda stream is a magical instrument that infuses tap water with magic to make fizzy water.

When I was a kid, we used to get seltzer delivered to us by the Soda Man (TM).  Our vestibule was always filled with three cases like this:

Back then, I loved those seltzer bottles because when you have ancient bottles in your house, your friends definitely don’t make jokes about your parents being clowns.  They also never pick a bottle up, shake it, and spray it in your face.

Now that I am old, have repressed all those memories of my childhood, and have completed 90% of my full transformation into my parents, I like seltzer again.  Thankfully, the Soda Man (TM) is retired, so I can safely make my own seltzer with the Soda Stream.  How does it work? you ask.  I have no idea.  But it does.  And it’s amazing.

The Waze App

I spend about 200 hours a week in the car.  Sometimes all these hours have led to brushes with the law.  Most of the time, though, I just enter a hypnotic state while listening to books on tapes or talk radio.

The Waze App is a community-based GPS app for your phone or ipad.  It’s amazing because everyone who uses it shares information essential to travel.  Like where the cops are hiding.  Suck it, pigs.

Deliberate Practice

The last batch of books I have listened to in the car all deal with inspiring me to write more.  If I can just get past all my neuroses and issues, then I can continue to entertain you as often as possible.

One theme that comes up over and over in these books is how the people who become the top performers in a given field don’t get there through innate ability alone.  They get there by deliberately practicing for 10,000 hours.  Malcolm Gladwell addressed this in Outliers and then extrapolated the idea to prove every point he’s ever had.

The notion of deliberate practice and expertise makes sense to me.  When I reflect on my life, I’ve had a number of different careers and have even mastered some activities (juggling, the ghost valley level in super mario kart, complaining).  I now realize that the difference between me and the people who went on to achieve great things was that they were willing to address their flaws and improve while I was willing to sit around and watch Hulu.

But then I had a major breakthrough.  In every one of these professional encounters, there was one thing that I worked at all the time.  I have probably sent somewhere between 300,000 and 1 million emails where I complained about something.  Sometimes, I would even print these out and make notes about how I could have improved them.  My peers may have been hitting the law books, reading peer-reviewed articles, or doing their jobs, but I was working towards something bigger.  I can really be the Tiger Woods of writing witty one line emails!  Dreams can come true.

The people who respond to my facebook page

You have no idea how happy it makes me when there’s a little indicator next to the globe thingy on my facebook page.  Seriously.  If not for Waze, I would have like 100 arrests for looking at my phone while driving so I can see if anyone said anything to me, and then respond immediately.

This also applies to Twitter.  For instance, check out this American Hero: