Monday, July 16, 2018

The Coffee Shop

I have to keep reminding myself that the house lives most happily when I behave as if it were a cafe with all the cons. That's the frame of mind that cuts through domestic and social entanglements.

Christopher Alexander discusses city life in A Pattern Language. One of the benefits he mentions is the convenience of being able to pick up small meals from local vendors. Doing so amounts to having a cook on the staff -30-
More after the jump.

Friday, July 13, 2018

After-market Modification

I chanced across a nifty little purse with a long cross-body strap. Once I got home and off my shopping feet, I spent half an hour contemplating how to shorten the strap to a good working length. Super glue, a zip tie in a matching color, and gaffer's tape all came to mind as ways to secure the end of the  length of black canvas that constitutes the strap.

Once I got my hands on the purse, I quit thinking and just pulled the Swiss Army knife out of my side bag. I cut the strap loose from the quite nice miniature swivel that attaches it to the body of the bag, reonnecting the strap with one simple knot pulled tight. I trimmed the excess length at an angle, and called it good. Thirty minutes' contemplation to one minutes' fabrication is about right -30-
More after the jump.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

The Checkbook Approach to Inventory Management

I use a paper check now and then. Close to the last few checks in a batch is an order form in a contrasting color. The same reminder technique works for stacks of clothing: I set a reminder color one up from the bottom of the pile to let me that it's time to do laundry -30-
More after the jump.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Misplaced Efficiency

When I realized that liquid soap would keep the margins of the hand-washing sink clean, I cheerfully deployed a bottle at the fixture. Over the several years since I made the change, the maintenance of each bathroom subtly deteriorated. I switched back to well-dried bar soap a few weeks ago to simplify the inventory. It quickly became apparent that the minor morning wiping necessary to keep the sink presentable also triggered the motor sequences of refreshing the other fixtures in the room.

Sparkling clean is a quiet luxury that takes only seconds to achieve -30-
More after the jump.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Shaving Ounces Off The Trip

Next time I'll excise the relevant pages from my planner. I can always tape or glue them back in place. Rather than tow a small rolling case, I'll nest my side bag into a generous open tote-30-
More after the jump.

Monday, July 9, 2018

Home and Hike

Slipping a luxury self-inflating air mattress with a memory foam layer into a low-end synthetic rectangular sleeping bag produced a long cushion that readily replaced the uncomfortable spring-loaded originals of an heirloom couch. I thought hard about the wisdom of the change and decided that utility trumped historic preservation -30-
More after the jump.

Friday, July 6, 2018


In idle moments, I used to think the house might make a good child care facility. It was never realistic even to plan, though, since other priorities prevailed. I have slowly come to realize that the front lawn is a pre-school-for birds. A crow family is learning to forage on their own on the grassy area that is clear of shrubbery and protected from passers-by by a low fence.

The towering shade trees across the street have enough dead branches to afford comfortable, easy to land on perches for novice flyers -30-
More after the jump.