Monthly Archives: November 2017

Housewarming Party

Living in Washington D.C. is to enjoy the excitement and dynamism of a supremely political town where everything is a priority and social obligations abound. Even we computer nerds have our particular circle of friends that we gather over time. We may be small cogs in a big wheel, but we have a presence. We all share interests as specialists in our field. There is so much technological advancement going on that it is an exciting job. We are at the forefront of a brave new world. People are constantly entering the field as it is timely and lucrative. The world needs our services. But there is a downside: it is competitive and sometimes cutthroat. You must keep up and having a good networking group helps. I am close to a number of members. There are times when we forget the Internet and concentrate on helping one another out.

Recently, a friend was moving across town to a new townhome and I wanted to help. He had done me many favors in the past. He hired a service so I wasn’t needed to hire a truck and load it, but to show support and recognition of a change in location, I bought a relevant housewarming gift. I wanted something appropriate that had nothing to do with computers or any kind of electronic gear. He has loads of laptop and tablets already. Everything is state of the art. Instead, I opted for a practical machine to vacuum his new home. Everyone needs one. It is lightweight yet super powerful so he doesn’t need a giant monster to store and tote around. The newer models at are so efficient and yet portable by anyone. They are easy to empty and clean. No need to be a weight lifter to use them. Some of the really early vacuums were made of metal and they weighted a ton. How did housewives ever use them?  Forget going up carpeted stairs. I guess you just left the dirt intact.

In keeping with the timeliness of my gift, I arranged for a modest housewarming party so he could show off the new space and also garner some presents. You need some handy items when you move. Old things get tossed aside, especially when clearly used to death and worn out. I know for a fact that he only had a basic old-world device. He needed an upgrade with all the bells and whistles. They are less noisy and more equipped to handle the variety of surfaces you get in a townhouse. It can handle tile and wood floors, as well as carpet, with ease. I know he would love it and after the fact, I found this to be the case. He thanked me profusely for my selection of a real timesaver. There could be more time for him to ply his trade, get new clients, and earn more income. Who knew that a household gift would impact his working life.

DC Roadside Emergency Kit Guide

I drive around a lot and even though DC is small and concentrated as a metropolitan area, my errands and obligations can take me to Maryland or Virginia. We have great expressways and thoroughfares across the city, but anything can happen. I could encounter a roadside emergency late at night when no highway patrol car is in the vicinity. Rather than wait for a kind soul to stop or a repair truck that I call, I can take care of many problems on my own much faster. I have made a point of getting up to date as a motorist on flat tires, an accumulation of ice or a lack of gas. Sure I watch the gauge, but I have a portable can. The trunk of my car is a receptacle for an air compression, an ice scraper, kitty litter (for oil spills or to create traction), and a good patch kit. What more do you need, my friends? Have you ever been in dire straits while on the road and were in need of these supplies? I bet many of you have.

What is handy is that the air compressor works off the car’s 12V outlet. I found it here: You just have to plug it in and start inflating your flat tire. The cord has sufficient reach so that front or back tires are no problem. We have all kinds of weather conditions in DC and my gear takes care of most situations. I try not to go out when the snow is heavy and cumbersome. It isn’t bad if the other cars on the road create visible paths. I also hate sleet and ice. It can be very dangerous and send you into a skid. Remember what to do? You turn your wheels into the skid. You don’t break and cause an accident by sliding into another unsuspecting car. I love when spring and summer come, although we do get our share of rain. Overall it is a temperate climate with a short snow season. When it covers the ground, it is a white paradise. Then I like to walk or take the metro. It is one of the best in the country next to Manhattan.

To end this blog, I direct you to many online websites that will help you select a good roadside emergency kit and learn how to use it. They are not all alike. Some are all season or just for winter. Some are well suited for cars, trucks and motor homes. Read the manual about emergency preparedness. Don’t just buy it and stow it away. You should get flares, batteries, collapsible snow shovel, hand warmers, the ice scraper mentioned, tow rope, jumper cables, dried food and bottles of water. You may find a safety vest, seatbelt cutter, distress sign, first aid kit, hand crank radio and large flashlight. You probably already own a mobile phone charger. The kits I like come in a duffel bag for easy storage and retrieval.

More Proof that DC Drivers are the Worst

I have been on a rant before about bad drivers in DC and the environs. People speed in bad weather and in good they don’t look. Accidents happen all the time, but they seem to happen to others. My blog today is about me and my terrifying tumble with an errant car while riding my bike. Since I live in a condensed city with ample bike lanes, it is often my preferred mode of transportation. It is easy to “park” and saves considerably on gas. I am into being economical these days with the rising cost of living. Have you ever priced a local condo or townhouse? You would be shocked.  Of course, riding is a great way to keep in shape and shed those extra pounds. Restaurants are great here as fussy foodies abound in this trendy commercial district. People want and expect the best. I often indulge and after seeing the results, I bought a new bike that I could propel through the city. I thought I would be safe and secure but then the unthinkable happened.

I was in my lane making a right turn onto a two-way street. I wasn’t in a hurry. I was rather vigilant and had looked in all directions as is my wont. Thus, I was startled to the max to be hit by an on-coming car going in the opposite direction. He had veered from the right lane to the left side of the road where I was pedaling away in peace. It was an illusion. He had been talking on his cell phone and had no Bluetooth connectivity. His hands were thus not on the wheel. I was so angry as this was so unnecessary given all the publicity about accidents during mobile device use.

I had hit the ground on my side and fortunately my head had been spared. Yes, I use a helmet. Let this be a lesson to us all. Oddly enough, however, my brand-new pricey G shock watch was intact and running. While the accident proves that DC drivers are the worst, it also proves that certain G Shock watches are the best. I would have bet seeing me on the ground with my crushed bike at my side that the watch on my wrist was defunct.

He wasn’t that apologetic given the fact that I suffered only minor bruises and scrapes. This made my anger rise to the boiling point. I didn’t have to go to the hospital the paramedics he called checked me out. It was the one courtesy he afforded me. He didn’t offer to repair or replace my wrecked bike but I insisted on getting his insurance company information so I could file a claim. I knew I had been in the right and he in the wrong. He wouldn’t admit it but there would be evidence from the police report.