Unexpected Visitor

Sep 30, 2007 in Photos

I was sitting at my computer the other day when I saw an unexpected visitor outside my window — a Yellow Warbler. Warblers are small, bright birds with lovely singing voices. They’re also classic subjects for birdwatching travels — a summer getaway to Texas or Georgia can net a Californian several exciting additions to their life list, provided that the birder is patient. Read on…

The Longest Week

Sep 29, 2007 in Spurts

It’s fall, and that means that long weeks stretch from Monday evening to Saturday morning. No, it’s not work, it’s football, and there are four long days without it every week during the winter. With early evenings, darkness, and the cool autumn air, that leaves a profound longing. Read on…

Just Like Being in a Disney Movie

Sep 27, 2007 in Elsewhere

Starting a company is a messy business. Things go wrong. Worse, things that you never thought could go wrong go wrong. You have to create everything afresh, and that always takes longer than expected. It’s a mess, and it’ll get you down. But you just have to believe. You can be the princess. You can go home again. It’s like a Disney movie — you just have to believe.

Read on…

Sanford and Me

Sep 26, 2007 in Otherwise Uncategorized

I had to move the trash to leave the house the other morning. Not my trash; I may occasionally put up with a bit more mess around the house than I should, but fundamentally I’m a guy who color-codes and labels everything. No, it’s my neighbor, My little alley has turned into a caricature straight out of Sanford and Son. Read on…

Bernanke’s Gift to the Banks

Sep 19, 2007 in Elsewhere

On top of their mostly-symbolic cut to the discount rate a month ago, the Fed has now cut the Federal Funds rate, hopefully lowering lenders’ interest rates and saving the economy from a Real Estate bubble-fueled recession. This is a dangerous game: the added credit availability may not trickle down to homeowners or other consumers, and the new liquidity may simply allow predatory and irresponsible lenders to cover their own losses while not learning a thing. This cut is a gift to the lenders — and shows that what we need is a policy solution to this housing crisis.

Read on…

Is it That Time of Year Again?

Sep 18, 2007 in Otherwise Uncategorized

It may be just that nature is teasing me — as I probably deserve — but it seems as if the weather’s changing the last few days. The I-wish-I-had-an-air-conditioner season is hopefully passing into the part of the year that makes friends from back east wax poetic about LA. Summer is lovely — and I even enjoyed the beach this year — but nothing says comfy like needing a throw blanket to go with your couch. Read on…

Negative Economic Predictor

Sep 13, 2007 in Elsewhere

I’m not much of an economist, but it’s starting to seem like I can predict recessions. Specifically, I start companies right before the economy goes in the toilet. I don’t know what I’m on to, but this is two times around the track now that this has happened. It’s a bit funny, but, if I’m clever, maybe I can figure out how to make money off of it.

Read on…

Quickbooks: Best Payroll Processing for Small Businesses

Sep 6, 2007 in Elsewhere

A few weeks ago, I switched my company over to Intuit’s Quickboks Payroll, replacing ADP as our processors. Only two payrolls later, I’m already in a groove with the quick and easy system. Why, if it didn’t involve large amounts of money moving out of my account, running payroll would be a joy!

Read on…

Dot Nostalgia

Sep 4, 2007 in True Life Stories

It is a complete coincidence that Junior’s vet is around the corner from my dot-com. But, when I picked him up from his Labor Day summer camp boarding adventure this morning, and drove past the big pink stucco building that my dot-com was in — and the Washington Mutual, and the Indian restaurant, and the really good Italian restaurant — of course I thought about mornings of XML programming and afternoons of I-swear-to-god-it’s-client-research visits to teen dating sites. And of course I convinced the AIG to grab lunch with me at the Palisades Garden Cafe. Read on…