Taking Advantage…

…of my insurance before it runs out at the end of August.

I’ve been a bad boy. I haven’t seen a dentist since we left Phoenix. I was reasonably confident that everything was okay, because I brush, floss, and rinse twice a day, but I really wanted a cleaning, so I made a last-minute appointment with the dentist my primary care doctor recommended. The hygienist complimented me. “Whatever you’ve been doing, keep doing it!”

There were a couple very minor issues; an ancient filling that should be replaced and a chipped incisor—but nothing that can’t wait until I’m working again and fully reinsured.

Beginnings

It was a very toasty 108℉ in Phoenix on that late spring day when I popped into the world. The sun was in Gemini and the Moon was in rising on the eastern horizon in Libra. I could tell you the position of every other planet as well, but what’s the point? I now believe in that stuff as much as I believe that a Jewish community activist rose from the dead 2000 years ago.

While I have no conscious recollection of it, there are plenty of family photos to prove that shortly after my first birthday, my folks and I flew back to Green Bay, where we met up with my mom’s side of the family and then drove to my grandparents’ home in western Massachusetts where we spent the remainder of the summer. This was to become an every-other-year family tradition (sometimes with my dad, sometimes without) until they relocated to Arizona in the early 1970s.

My earliest memory was noticing the way the light fell from below the drawn window shade on the painted concrete block wall next to my bed while I was supposed to be napping. From this, I can ascertain I was probably less than two years old, because the next oldest memories are of my second birthday. My folks threw a backyard wading-pool party and invited all the neighbor kids (it was a recently built neighborhood full of new families, all part of the baby boom).

The next year, we made the trek to Wisconsin and Massachusetts and moved from our home in Scottsdale to central Phoenix, where we took up residence in an adorable bungalow built in the late 30s located in what was to become 40 years later the very trendy—and very expensive—Willo neighborhood. During our time there however, it was neither. (I remember it being full of working families and retirees who’d probably moved into their homes when they were new.) It was a cute little place with two bedrooms, hardwood floors, a huge back yard with orange trees and a detached garage—and which now possessed a very curious three year old who recently learned how to use a screwdriver and wasted no time in sneaking off to remove the dials from the backyard gas meter. True story! (My mom and recently gone back to work, leaving me in the care of a part-time housekeeper.) Needless to say, it was a miracle I didn’t blow the house—and myself—to smithereens that day.

After that little incident, Mom quit her job and I never saw the housekeeper again.

Two years later, just as I was starting kindergarten, I was told there was going to be an addition to the family. My sister was on the way, necessitating yet another move. I was thrilled at the prospect of having a sibling, but not so thrilled at the though of moving away from the friends I’d made in the neighborhood. I hated kindergarten, so that was also a plus, but it meant that I would forever be branded a kindergarten drop out.

Susan was born the following April, and I adored her unconditionally from the moment she appeared in my life.

That’s Disgusting

We wash our sheets religiously every week. When I was single it was every other week.

But only once every three months? That’s disgusting!

From Towleroad:

A new study released by the UK mattress company Ergoflex recently revealed, after documenting the linen habits of over 2,000 British men and women, that young, single men change their sheets the least often, reportedly only doing so once every three months on average. Most also report only owning one set of bed sheets, as opposed to women who reported owning an average of three different sheet sets.

Time helped summarize some of the results of the study based on certain demographics:

“Single women reported swapping linens every two and a half weeks, while couples claimed to change sheets every two weeks. Of those couples, the study found 81% of those washing the sheets were women. Of the 2,004 interviewed, on average men admitted to owning only one set of sheets while women estimated around three selections.

“Though it’s clear that females are cleaner overall, the results found that age is a factor as well. For those who answered once every three months, 55% were ages 18 to 25 with men accounting for 71%, while those who claimed to wash sheets once a week were in the 35 to 50 age range. Of the weekly washers, 62% were female. Indeed, 17% of single men participating in the study admitted that partners found their unhygienic practices unnerving compared to just 2% of women.”

Young mens’ unclean bedroom habits can lead to a buildup of dead skin, dander, body secretions and bacteria, according to experts. Such a buildup can potentially lead to respiratory problems. According to Time, those same experts recommend that people change and/or wash their bed sheets once a week for that very same reason. “One person can perspire as much as a liter in a night—even more if you have a lot of covers,” said Philip M. Tierno Jr., director of clinical microbiology and immunology at New York University’s Langone Medical Center, to the Wall Street Journal. He also explained how fungal mold, fungal spores, lint, fibers, pollen, soil and cosmetics can all accumulate in the fibers of bed sheets. Those, along with other bodily residues, can potentially serve as food to microscopic mites, which can nest in your sheets and leave their feces behind.

Jed MacEwan, a spokesman for Ergoflex, told the UK’s The Daily Mail how he was absolutely taken aback by the results. “We were quite alarmed at the apparent lack of basic hygiene from some respondents,” he said. The shade…

Recommended

I stumbled across this a few months ago while searching for the soundtrack from the film of the same name. Imagine my surprise when I discovered this is so good it could actually be soundtrack music. It’s not; it’s from a genre—epica—that I’d never heard of, but one I have immediately taken a liking to.

Earworm

I don’t remember ever hearing this back in the day, but Ben introduced me to it a few weeks ago and I now love it. Unfortunately, last night I had one of those fitful nights of sleep, and every time I woke up it was blaring at angelic volume in my head.

Enjoy.

Movie Review

Meh.

Entertaining, but not gripping. Ashton Kutcher was the worst part of the entire film. I never saw Steve on that screen, I only saw Kutcher—and his attempted miming of Job’s iconic walk was just…distracting. The film offered only the most superficial insight into what made Jobs tick, and the fact that huge parts of his life were conspicuously absent from the film didn’t help matters either.

While it was interesting to see the fictionalization of the early years of Apple, including Steve’s dismissal and eventual triumphant return to the company, I’d be much more interested in seeing what transpired after Jobs’ return…those years leading up the the product launches that totally reinvigorated the company.

Sadly, the only glimpse of that is at the very start of the film where a much older Jobs is seen introducing the first iPod.

I caught the flick at a $5 matinee, so I didn’t feel cheated, but I was expecting…more.

On Aging

I long for the days when the most difficult part of my morning routine was putting in my contact lenses, and the worst health issue I had to contend with were allergies and an occasional bout of tonsillitis.