Yuuuge disappointment

I have been waiting for months to see “Lady Dynamite”, the new Maria Bamford series on Netflix. It finally came out Friday night. I got about 1 1/2 episodes into it and gave up. Most of the reviews were lukewarm, but that’s being kind.

She’s one of my favorite standup comedians and there’s a shortage of really funny stuff to watch on TV. So this is a big bummer. I was hoping for something more like “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.” Hell, I would have even settled for a simple variety show of sketches with her playing all the different characters she does on stage.

I’m sure plenty of people will hail this show as genius, but really, it’s about as good as something you might find on “Funny or Die.”

Canaries in the gold mine

I’m not sure if I’m lucky or cursed, but I lived and worked through the Internet Bubble of the late ’90s. Back then people were leaving established companies for startups. If you asked them what they were going to be doing, they’d smugly reply, “they’re going public in June.”

I did time in startups back then, one of them turned out to be very successful. Unfortunately, the last one I was at of that era wasn’t.

Let my wisdom be your guide and see if the startup you’re working at is a Unicorn, or Unicorpse.

Signs your startup isn’t doing as well as you thought

  • The only thing left to drink is Diet Sprite.
  • You get random emails Slack messages telling you to avoid non-essential travel despite being a desk-bound developer.
  • They stop watering the plants.
  • Your CEO has time to update the blog, hourly.
  • Acronyms like LTV, CAC, and DAU and switches to MLM, BYOD, and BYOB.

Getting my boy off the handle

Last year my son started drinking coffee. He didn’t do it because I encouraged him. A buddy of his was already on the stuff so he figured he should too. He’s seen me struggle with the addiction for years and had managed to avoid it.

This Christmas, I got a really nice espresso machine. It’s my fifth and the best so far. I think it’s the 3rd I’ve received from Linda in our 25 years together.

This new machine is so much better than the ones I’ve had in the past. It make them as good as a coffeeshop. It’s so easy now, I’m making them all the time. It’s like having a mini Mr. Methlab in the house. Come to think of it, the handle of the espresso machine looks kind of like a pipe.

This morning, I polished off the pot of drip coffee before anyone else was up. I was too lazy to make more, so I showed my son how to make his own (double) espresso. Now I know what it must be like to be a junkie dad. I feel guilty and anxious. Now that he knows how to make espressos, it’s like I bought him his first pack of cigarettes, but now I’m worried he’s going to get into my stash.

Kind of writes itself

I saw this in a Peet’s coffeeshop restroom in the city the other day. The title of the book is “If Women Ruled the World”. I found it ironic on a couple levels, and had these thoughts if women did in fact rule the world:

  1. The toilet seat wouldn’t have been left up.
  2. There wouldn’t be a book in the bathroom, because women don’t read on the toilet.

I’m not sure it was left behind to make a statement. There was a bookstore down the street having one of those sidewalk sales. The kind where they leave a table of books out in public with a drastically reduced price. It’s like they don’t even care if they get stolen. I’ve bought my share of books from those tables, and have never finished any. They’re usually stinkers. My theory is this may have been one of those books.

And yes, I did take a photo in a public toilet. I’m sure the person waiting outside heard the echoing “click” of my camera too and wondered what in the hell I was doing.


The great California drought is in it’s 4th year, and if you’re to believe the experts, we’re down to our last drops of water. I’m inclined to believe them because we haven’t seen any significant rain in ages. So if that’s the case, I don’t get why anyone would be wasting any water on their lawn.

You don’t have to tell me twice to let the lawn go. I’m not one of those crazy doofuses who live for golf course-like turf in the front yard. Guys that obsess over their yard are just a shell of a man.

Wasting what little water is left on grass is like letting your wife use the last beer in the house for cooking.

Podcast from the past

Not many people know this, but I was a podcasting pioneer, for about a month. Back in the summer and fall of 2004 I did one from my basement. There weren’t a lot of people doing them back then. The big cheese at that time was Adam Curry of late 80s and 90s MTV fame.

I used to email him directly whenever I had something new posted. He would check it out. Sometimes he’d mention it on his show or link back to it. One of things I did was the audio track I posted here.


Back then I was doing all the podcasts on my laptop. I had left it at the office and had to use my G4 Cube, which didn’t have any analog audio inputs. I thought about doing the podcast entirely with text-to-speech. I stumbled on an AT&T site that had a bunch of different voices. After playing with it for a while, I had a different idea. What if my computer decided to do the podcast without me. So that’s where this came from.



Many moons ago, my friend Alex Lash and I tried to do a satirical website. This Dlibert spoof was one of the things I did for it. It’s tasteless I know.

You’re First

I love semiotics, the study of meaning in symbols and signs. This one in particular is quite delightful. That subtle little fold tells me that I’m the first person to use this facility since it was last cleaned…I hope. God I hope.

The price of dignity

When you need to buy a suitcase at 8:36 pm on a Saturday night, where else you gonna go but TJ Maxx? It wasn’t until I got home that I realized what a huge bargain I had scored.

Are you bragging, or complaining?