Monday, December 13, 2010

Giving up Crackberry for iMeth

This past Monday I handed in my Blackberry.  I was carrying two devices: a Blackberry for work and an  iPhone for personal use. I needed to simplify; one less device to forget going through airport security, one less charger. So I started testing out my work email on my iPad which worked well, then started testing out the iPhone on the exchange server.

My crackberry addiction goes all the way back to my early days after the bubble burst and there was a flood of used blackberries on eBay for sale. A couple of us picked up the 950 models and we were off to the races. After upgrading through various models I definitely think it is the superior corporate email device, and still remains so in my mind.

We all know the iPhone apps are what set the devices apart.   While I would take a real keyboard and Blackberry exchange integration over the iPhone, the Blackberry apps simply don't compare. Whether I'm checking my flights on my Delta app or listening to something out of my iTunes library it's a simple setup and easy to use.

Carrying two devices that emitted radio waves also seemed like something I should try to avoid. I do carry a charger for the iPhone where ever I go to make sure I don't go dark.  I have to say it's nice to be down one device.

Full disclosure:  my idea for iMeth came from the latest Roger Waters Tour.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

It's the end of my 10 year affair with TiVo

It's been a long affair with my TiVo, starting 9/5/2000. After purchasing a Series One box in September of 2000, I was addicted. The functionality, the ability to get a season pass, being able to efficiently consume my favorite shows and skip commercials - I was hooked.

They are the pioneers and even with all the miss-steps, they are still here today. In the past month I started to question whether I should upgrade my TiVo or succumb to Cablevision's own cheaper DVR service. There were pros and cons to weigh, including all of the offers TiVo was dangling in front of me to upgrade, discounts on the Premiere box, etc.

With my current Series II setup, I was missing HD quality recording and with a nice 42" LCD I was missing out. I started to notice it more and more when I watched live sports at friends' homes. It also drove me crazy to have all the different remote controls and not being able to leverage the IO features easily.

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

I started looking into seriously switching in mid-November and started checking out the Optimum options. Cablevision offers a HD DVR for about $11 a month with no box to buy. I was paying TiVo $14.95 a month and would need to buy a new box and then rent a cable card from Cablevision.

In the end I called Cablevision and ordered the box.  It came via FedEx and I returned my old box. Easy and simple.

Now I'm on the phone with TiVo to cancel my service and I must say they made quite an effort to save me.  The rep put me on hold for 2-3 minutes while they  "processed" my cancellation. I'm sure it's scientifically designed to be the optimal process to create dumper's remorse. Holding was essentially listening to an infomercial for TiVo Premiere.

On comes my rep, who said he talked to his manager and because I'm such a great customer I was then offered a Premiere box for $99.99 plus my normal monthly fee. He also tried to give me a free month of service through December which would allow me to stay eligible for all the upgrade offers if I changed my mind about the Optimum DVR.

Am I pining away for my TiVo?

TiVo clearly is the best TV/DVR OS (operating system) out there. The remote is well designed, making it simple to navigate and drive your viewing pleasure. The discovery system, TiVo suggested recordings based on your likes (thumbs up), or dislikes (thumbs down) found many a TV show I never would have found. Southern Fried Stings is a recent example. I'm going to ignore the On-Demand streaming features because almost any device (game console, computer) you connect has them now.

The Optimum DVR has the basic functions of TiVo, but with some key limitations. The season pass functionality only allows you to look seven days out. If the show isn't on within the next seven days no luck recording it. There isn't any discovery functionality either, so it's now my responsibility to find new shows. The remote is a standard cable remote, but the UI isn't as smooth or well laid out as TiVo's. One nice feature is an iPhone app that let's you schedule or delete shows remotely.

Yes, I miss the TiVo operating system, but I'm disappointed that they never became the TV operating system for the masses. I would happily pay a couple bucks more a month for a TiVo software upgrade on my Optimum rented box. It's nice to reduce the number of boxes under my television.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Removing a bee hive from the LVIS Building

While my wife and I were on vacation, or as she likes to call it a bee-cation, I got the call that a bee swarm had taken up home in the second story of the Ladies Village Improvement Society (LVIS) building in East Hampton, NY.

I immediately went into action, as I had never removed a hive from a building. Sure I've read plenty of articles about how to do it. I'd pulled one from a privet hedge, but not a building.

Step one was to figure out what equipment I would need to get this hive out. I determined the easiest way after watching some youtube videos and researching on the Internet was to build a bee-vac. I decided on using a shop-vac and combining that with a medium super and a deep hive body. Essentially the medium super has #10 screen across the top of it with the shop-vac hose connecting underneath it. This large screen area helps to reduce the suction on the bees after they are pulled into the deep hive body.
Rob and Sherrill getting the bee-vac ready

From there it was getting up on a ladder and trying to vacuum up as many bees as possible while also determining where they setup shop with their hive. If you don't get the comb out of your house, it'll either attract other bees or it'll melt and attract other unwanted insects.

Rob Deichert removing honey bees

Once the bees were sucked into the bee-vac, I removed all of the comb including the old decaying comb that was up in the soffit. Clearly another hive had once inhabited the area, which upon questioning the LVIS members nobody could remember it ever being there.

Once the bees were out it was time to transfer them to a nuc box. This was a five frame, waxed cardboard nuc from Brushy Mountain. In the photos below you'll see I shook them into the box and found the queen which I promptly marked with a blue marker.

What happened next was not expected.

Diana and I went for walk and when we returned they were gone. I started to look around to see where they might have clustered. One look up and sure enough they were about 40 feet in the air on a branch of the oak tree above the nuc.  I guess they didn't like their new home.

Not having any way to reach them, we went to bed and in the morning I awoke to the swarm taking off. It was the first swarm I ever witnessed taking off. It was amazing- that ball of bees simultaneously burst into a cloud and sounded like an airplane taking off.

They seemed to be heading south so I hopped in the car and went looking for them. Sure enough I found them on another tree on a road nearby. I was able to bat them down with a borrowed bamboo pole at which point I grabbed the queen who landed on the road and put her in the large hive body. The rest of the bees quickly followed and I was off with my recaptured bees.

I'm happy to report the bees are now safely in their new home and seem to be drawing out comb and filling it with honey. I haven't seen the marked queen, but I have seen a few cells with eggs in them.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Visit to the High Line

Diana and I finally made it down to visit the High Line after talking about it for over a year. They've done an amazing job transforming this urban freight railroad into a one-of-a-kind park experience. The landscaping and the design elements are incredible.

There was also the added bonus of seeing plenty of honey bees, thus I've included some shots.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Long Island Beekeeper Association Hive Visit

Today was my first hive visit with the association. It was amazing to watch a master beekeeper at work with no protective gear.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Tiger Woods Franklin Covey Planner Quote March 2, 2010

Currently my planner is filled with the Leadership version which has a quote a day.

March 2, 2010 -
One of the things that my parents have taught me is never listen to other people's expectations. You should live your own life and live up to your own expectations, and those are the only things I really care about. - Tiger Woods
Interesting quote...considering what's been revealed.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Alternatives to no NYC Mass Transit

Recently on a trip to Washington DC I had the pleasure of reading Amtrak's Arrive magazine. The issue had an article by Vice President Joe Biden who wrote about train travel and it's importance to our country's future. One particular section stood out:
"Consider if you shut down Amtrak's Northeast Corridor, it is estimated that to compensate for the loss, you'd have to add seven new lanes of highway to Interstate 95. When you consider it costs an average of $30 million for one linear mile of one lane of highway, you see what a sound investment rail travel is."
This reminded me of a blog post, by the Fruminator, who ran the math on what would be needed to replace NYC subway's morning rush hour with cars and parking.

It's staggering.

Makes you think twice about how mass transit is funded.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Power of the free market in East Hampton Village

East Hampton Village owns 13 beach houses right on the Atlantic Ocean. For a long time these were rented out to a core group of people who were able to re-rent each year. This year the Village decided to auction off the rentals. covered the auction.

Here's the math:

Expected rent $516,000 (4% annual increase included)
Actual rent from auction $827,000

60% more rental income

13 units for rent
24 bidders

Imagine if this auction had been handled on eBay?

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Shop-Vac to the rescue - How not to unclog a shower drain

Getting ready to go out tonight for dinner I find myself showering and the drain is really slow. This is kind of odd since put I Drano down about a week ago and it seemed to run smooth. I asked Diana to bring the plunger, I plunge, it only gets worse.

It's not draining at all and I have a nice broken blister on the palm of my plunging hand.

All kinds of nasty stuff is coming back up, we're no longer headed to dinner and it's a disaster.

Emergency plumber called, sketchy guy calls back. I tell him he's not coming over. Out of Drano.

Time to try my Shop-Vac, first I jam the hose down the drain and suck the water up. Maybe the suction will pull whatever is in the drain up and out. No dice - still not draining.

Next it's reverse the hose and take a wet wash cloth to wrap the hose end and try to blow the clog down. That does the trick. It's draining like never before.

Swab some Manuka honey on my broken blister, nice burning sensation, and I'm good to go.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

East Hampton Town Budget Mess Select Quotes From New York State Comptroller's Audit Report

I recently downloaded the New York State Comptroller's audit of East Hampton Town. It's a long read, but with a quick email to my Kindle I was able to read and select some choice paragraphs for your reading pleasure. This stuff is mind bending, most people in the private sector would get fired for operating in this manner.
Budgeted Appropriations – We analyzed appropriations and expenditures for the 2004 through 2007 fiscal years and found that Town officials significantly underestimated appropriations for police department personal service costs and employee benefits. During this four-year period, expenditures for police salaries and employee benefits exceeded appropriations by a total of approximately $5.9 million.
The Town’s budget officer did not provide the Board with cash flow schedules or periodic trial balances showing current financial condition. Further, the budget officer did not give the Board complete monthly budget reports for either revenue accounts or appropriations accounts. Thus, Board members were not adequately aware of the serious nature of the Town’s fiscal stress.
The Town’s independent public accountant did not prepare and present timely annual financial reports to the Board. For example, the audited annual financial reports for the 2006 and 2007 fiscal years were not presented to the Town until December 2007 and March 2009, respectively. The Board received these reports too late to be useful in developing realistic budgets based on reliable data.
We found that wire transfers totaling almost $8.5 million were made by unauthorized employees without documentation, using photocopies of signed approval forms.
We found the Supervisor’s signature plate was not physically secure. Instead, the signature plate, along with the two keys required to use it, sat in the check signing machine in the budget office, unattended and usable by all Budget Office employees. When we told the budget officer that his signature plate was unprotected, he put the plate and keys in an open safe, still accessible to anyone who worked in the office.
Two contracts totaling $2.3 million were awarded without competitive bidding, and professional services totaling $2.4 million were obtained without using competitive proposals. Further, the Town paid almost $73,000 for services from a company owned by a Town employee’s spouse. The employee did not disclose her interest in this contract, as required by GML and the Town’s code of ethics.
Further, because the Town has not evaluated the terms of these contracts, it has not increased its 15-cent per gallon flow through charge that was set in 1993 when aviation fuel cost about $1 per gallon. Therefore, the FBOs, who made approximately $2 profit per gallon of fuel they sold to customers in 2008, paid only 7 percent of this profit to the Town. 
During our audit period, the Town paid on average, approximately $2.70 per gallon for aviation fuel. If the Town received the same percentage of the purchase price that it received in 1993, the Town would have collected nearly $372,000 in 2007 – $248,000 more than it actually received. Because the Town has not evaluated and adjusted the terms of FBO contracts, it has not optimized the revenues it could be earning from its airport operations.
• For example, the Town made 23 payments to the general contractor of the Justice Court project totaling $1,820,841, but only eight of the claims, totaling $616,073, were available for review at the Town. Town officials could not locate claim vouchers for the remaining 15 payments, totaling $1,204,768.
During June 2008, we reviewed the access rights of 21 individuals who were listed as active employees working for one of the following departments: budget office, purchasing, personnel and town clerk. We found that four of the 21 individuals were actually former employees (two from purchasing, one from personnel and the former Deputy Budget Officer). Although all these individuals had left Town service prior to August 2007 – and the former personnel employee had left in August 2004 – two of their user accounts were still being used to access the system and enter data. For example, the former Deputy Budget Officer left Town employment on July 27, 2007, but his user account was used to access the IT system until April 1, 2008. The user account for the purchasing employee, who left Town service December 18, 2006, was still used to access the system until January 2, 2008. We were told that purchasing employees and budget office employees used the accounts of these former employees. However, neither we nor Town officials know whether other individuals accessed the system using these accounts.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Amazon please give us a Send To Kindle button

I'm a big fan of Amazon's Kindle, but it can always be improved. Here's another idea to add to my growing list.

"Share this" buttons exist on almost every content page, I can share with Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, to name a few. Most news and magazine sites have a format for printing button as well. 

What about send to Kindle button? This seems so simple, but makes taking long format text content and moving it to where you want to read it EASY. Similar to Fred Wilson's Watch Later post on online video. Like video there are plenty of articles that you want to consume later.

There is nothing more enjoyable than to take a long article I've found online and converting it over for reading on my commute. This takes multiple steps right now just to make this happen. 

How about a one click solution Mr. Bezos?

This could be a way for publishers to generate a little extra revenue for minimal work. Amazon could allow the publisher to set a premium price for sending an article, if you're not a paid subscriber, and provide some revenue with every press of the button. This could also be a nice way to market subsidized Kindle subscriptions with the magazine or newspaper. 

If I'm a paid subscriber, then this just makes the subscription stickier. Don't charge me a premium, just make it "one click easy."

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Trying out Metal Man Restoration for steel casement window restoration

I finally broke down and had a few of my steel casement windows sent out to be restored. I've blogged before that I'd like to restore them myself, but with the winter here and a new job I figured I'd try out the professionals. There was serious rusting on the bottom of the window frames that mount in the building, so before I sent them out I sanded and treated with Rust-oleum heavy rust primer.

The company I'm working with is Metal Man Restoration in Mount Vernon, NY. They came and picked up and removed the windows- something I suggest having a professional do since they are heavy and we're on a high floor. If they fell they could do some serious damage to the building as well as to someone walking by.

Metal Man's process is to put the windows into a paint removing bath to strip them down to bare steel. Next step is to remove the glass panes and old glazing. From there they spray the window frames down with a metal paint, replace the glass, and put in linseed-oil-based black window glaze. This is allowed to dry and then they are remounted.

Below is a picture of the windows while they are drying after their paint job.

steel casement window frame being painted

More to come when they are re-installed.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Tag updating

Finally went back and added tags to some of my older posts. Sorry if they show back up via RSS.


We need more people in public service like Gary Gensler

I just read a great article about Gary Gensler, chairman of the CFTC (Commodity Futures Trading Commission) in Businessweek.

Gensler is an ex-Goldman Sachs partner and he's striving to make signficiant changes as to how derivatives are regulated. Tough changes.

The best quote from the article that sums up why we need more Gary Gensler's in government is this:
Over a private lunch at the Waldorf Astoria on Jan. 6, Gensler, 52, told executives from Credit Suisse (CS), Deutsche Bank (DB), Bank of New York Mellon (BK), and Goldman that while he once shared their goals—to boost revenues and their own bonuses—his responsibility now was to taxpayers, according to people familiar with the meeting. When one banker asked Gensler what he saw as the biggest obstacle to reform, he gestured toward his hosts and replied: "You."
Why should the general public care about these complex financial products? Because they helped to make the financial melt down worse. These are products that trade in the shadows, that lack a real transparent marketplace, which means there are big profits and big risks being taken.

Of course in proper Congressional fashion the legislation has loopholes in it that will allow the shenangans to continue. Gensler knows how the game is played and is calling people out on what's reality and what's false.
During agency discussions about rules on how firms trade and account for their transactions, "We've had times when someone says, 'The banks tell us they can't do that,' " Chilton recounts. "And Gary says, 'That's crazy. I used to do it all the time.' "
This blog post might make it sound like I'm anti-wealth, anti-profits. I am for wealth and profits, just not at the expense of the entire country.

It's fine to make a profit with you business, if you don't you go out of business. You go out of business maybe you wipe out your investors, you default on your loans, etc.

The difference with what we experienced on Wall Street was that they made profits, but when they went out of business they almost put the country out of business.

To put it another way, if you speed and drive recklessly on the highway you put yourself and drivers around you at risk. Most people who see that reckless driver coming will get out of the way, or they will avoid that road if it's filled with reckless drivers.

The entire country of drivers never saw that driver coming and weren't able to avoid that road. The driver wrecks and takes out all the drivers on the road.

Guess what?

Now your insurance preimiums just went up because it's a really bad wreck and that reckless driver didn't have insurance.

Monday, February 08, 2010

2010 Experiments in Beekeeping

One of the great things about keeping bees is that it's relatively easy to test out new "things." Things being new equipment, new strains of bees, new bee keeping techniques. Measuring the results might be difficult, but it's fun either way. As it's almost time to get ready for the spring I figured it was a great time to sit down and come up with 2010 beekeeping list of key things to do.

1. Focus on hive yield vs hive growth: This year I've decided to keep my hive count essentially flat and focus on my honey yield. The last two years were embarrassingly low. Maybe it wasn't too bad last year as many of the experienced beekeepers in the LI club also had a terrible harvest. I'm at six hives right now, maybe I'll grow to 8, or maybe not. I'll need to make sure they have plenty of comb and are well-feed in the spring and monitor for small hive beetles (SHB) and the Varroa mite.

2. New hive configuration: I'm going to try setting up a hive with just medium supers, instead of two deeps. There are pros and cons, but many people rave about medium setups because they are easier to move around. A fully loaded deep hive body can weigh 90 lbs, while a medium is 60 lbs. It might not seem like a lot of weight but fill them with angry bees and place them at the most inopportune height for picking up and you'll feel my pain. Using three mediums instead of two deeps will give me the same storage capacity. Talking with Pete (master beekeeper) he loves that setup and finds them to have many advantages. I'll start this hive with a package of bees from Pete.

3. Try out ordering a NUC: I'm also ordering a Nuc to start a new hive or if I have a dead hive to restart it. A Nuc essentially gives you a 45 day head start on a package, but they get delivered later than a package of bees so you pick up a 21 day head start. We have an early nectar flow on Long Island thus it might work out better. A NUC comes with 4 frames of bees which only fit in a deep hive body.

4. Test out some Russian bees: Pete is making his Cannonball run to Georgia to pick up a van full of package bees. From Pete I'll pick up a four pound package of  Italian bees with a Russian queen as well as, fingers crossed, two Russian queens to re-queen two of my hives. The two extra Russian queens will allow me to change over their ethnicity from Italian to Russian. He's also going to be setting up a bunch of his own hives which I'll help out with too. Diana will be on hand to shoot plenty of video for your viewing enjoyment. A great way to get even more practice while setting up ~ 30 hives ~ 120 lbs of bees.

5. Build some of my own bee equipment: I'm handy so why not build some bee equipment myself instead of buying everything. Top of my list is to design a hive top feeder that can hold a lot of syrup. 4 gallons would be ideal and be easy to lift off the hive or drain it as needed. More to come...

6. Feeding: I'm going to feed my bees early for a spring build up. I'm also going to plant plenty of clover and other bee food nearby to help provide a close forage.

More to come...

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Back from the AdMeld Partner Forum

I had the pleasure of attending the AdMeld Partner Forum today at the Time Warner Center. It was an reunion with current and past employee galore. Alums have scattered to the wind and they represented probably a dozen companies.

Twitter was hot with some great nuggets from the panels.

Kicking it off with the keynote was none other than Emily Riley from Forrester Research. Emily is old school, one of the first delivery managers in the company. She helped pioneer the online education business back in the day with Casey Cook and Mike Peralta. Emily is super sharp and delivered the goods about RTB as well as shared some interesting marketer feedback about their expectations of display performance. If you weren't there you can download a copy of the research here.

Out of all the panels some of my key take-aways are:

1. It's small, but growing fast. When people mentioned the number of bids being handled in a day or a month we're still not talking about large numbers. People realize scale is important and this was echoed across many panels. It's not efficient to sell six impressions to anyone right now.

2. You don't necessarily need RTB to get what you need. Much of the performance the demand side platforms (DSPs) are driving aren't really related to naming your price in real-time. It's the ability to cherry pick the right impressions based on a data set you choose and you know correlates with performance for you.

3. Someone on the agency panel said something to the effect, "CMO's eye's glaze over at the discussion of the technology involved with all of this." This was in response to whether companies would build and/or run their own DSPs. Since many companies change their agencies every few years, doing it all themselves would require them to change out their marketing team. Not sure a wholesale liquidation of the team will be the most efficient. Operators will be needed to run the DSPs for most advertisers.

4. RTB won't takeover all of the direct sale business anytime soon - it would be too unpredictable for the buyers and sellers. The advertisers need to spend their marketing budgets and show results. A large portion of this needs to be locked in to ensure the results. Leaving it up to the minute by minute moves of auction is not reassuring. You might not spend your budget and reach your audience.

The sellers of media have goals and executives that need to forecast revenue. Minute by minute forecasting doesn't really work. This will encourage sellers to sell upfront deals to lock in demand and commissions.

5. Attribution is still up in the air and just because we can measure better online with clicks and purchases doesn't mean we aren't delivering branding benefits. It's just easier to overshadow with such measurable results around the bottom of the sales funnel. If we can't predict every result perfectly there is still need to buy and pray you choose wisely.

6. Publishers are getting smarter about how they sell their inventory. Designing the right channel conflict and understanding what each channel should offer as a feature set to advertisers should start to help bring some order.

Wrapping it up, special thanks to the AdMeld team for putting a great event together.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

A Glimpse at the possible future of tabilzines

Had the opportunity watch this video last week and it was mind blowing. The possibilities are endless from a content and advertising perspective. I'm looking forward to seeing what the next year or two brings as touch screen tablets take off with Apple's help.

Sports Illustrated - Tablet Demo 1.5 from The Wonderfactory on Vimeo.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Scanning and Shredding My Way To A Paperless Home Office

westchester county ny shred mobile

During my week off between jobs I took the plunge to a paperless home office.

After reading about Fujitsu ScanSnap S1500 and getting rave reviews from my friend Dan, I ordered one from This machine can do duplex, color, and OCR into a PDF. For ~$450 it comes with Adobe Acrobat Standard which is a $252 by itself.

Now it's time to scan and shred.

The scanning was amazingly simple to do with the software included with the ScanSnap. First go around I set up the scanner to OCR while it was scanning. With my old laptop this was really slow, but not to worry the software has a background OCR process. Just turn-off the immediate OCR option and while the computer is idle your files will be OCR'd. I burned through thousands of pages in a few days and eliminated four storage boxes of records.

I started out with a Staples 8 sheet cross cut shredder, but with this amount of paper I was not 100% sure it would make it through. It overheated twice and I was just getting started. Once the paper is confetti it went into my "kind-to-the-earth," partially recycled, Seventh Generation Kitchen Trash Bags. This wasn't efficient, as I could scan faster than my shredder could consume the discarded paper. The other downside is the paper dust; for some reason the cross cut shredder gives off a fine white dust which then needs to be cleaned up.

Fast forward - I remembered reading about Westchester County having a mobile shred truck. A little searching online and I found a shredding day this past Saturday. The county employees were friendly and helpful; my waiting in-line plus shredding took less than 15 minutes. I didn't have to throw out the confetti and my shredder didn't melt down.

4 boxes shredded.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Kindle Cover Design Issue

There must be a problem with the Kindle cover when I get an email sent to me months after purchase letting me know how to use it correctly.

How many things break or are damaged if you open them up backwards?

Dear Kindle User,
We’re sending this note to remind you about proper
attachment and use of your Kindle cover and about Amazon’s Kindle warranty. You
can view instructions and illustrations here:
THE COVERTo install the Kindle, open the cover and lay it on a flat surface.
Then insert the bottom attachment hook on the cover into the bottom slot on the
left edge of the Kindle. Rotate the Kindle to insert the top attachment hook.
Then slide the switch down slightly to lock the cover attachment hooks in
Be sure to place the Kindle flat on the cover during installation. Do
not tip the Kindle at an angle during installation, as that may cause the cover
attachment hooks to bend.
USING THE KINDLE COVERWhen using your Kindle with
the cover, be careful to open the front cover only. If you open the back cover
and pull the cover away from the Kindle, that may cause the attachment hooks to
bend and could result in cracking or other damage to the Kindle.
KINDLE WARRANTYYour Kindle is covered by a One-Year Limited Warranty you can
view here:
the attachment hooks on your cover have become bent, or your Kindle has
developed cracking or other damage near the location where the hooks connect to
the Kindle, please contact Kindle Support by phone or email regarding warranty
You can reach us via phone or e-mail through our website by
clicking the Contact Us button on our help pages at
or directly by calling one of these numbers:Inside the United States:
1-866-321-8851, Outside the United States: 1-206-266-0927.
For more
information, please see the Warranty Service section of the Kindle Return
Policies Help page:
Kindle Team

Monday, January 04, 2010

Reflecting back on 2009

2009 was a year marked by loss -

Passing of Jon Alsop - Jon's death was a shock and I blogged about earlier this year. Jon will be missed. Jon was one of my real estate partners in Baltimore.

Passing of Lamar Conrad - Lamar was a mentor and friend during my stay in Locust Point Baltimore. He helped Jon Alsop, John Demayo, and myself rehab multiple houses in the Point. He kept us out of trouble, saved us a few times from certain death or dismemberment and taught us the ins and outs of South Baltimore contracting and life. I could write a short story about all of the various crazy situations we experienced together. What a reality TV show it would be with Lamar, Junior, and Jodie.

Lamar taught me the ten foot rule, if you can't see it from ten feet you're fine. This was a critical time saving lesson as I'm a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to construction. He also turned me onto the book, Working Alone with tons of tips for when you don't have an extra set of hands.
I did not find out about Lamar losing his fight against cancer until after Christmas. He was truly unique, completely larger than life, and will be missed. I look forward to helping with a memorial bull roast in March of 2010.

Passing of Jason Strauss - I worked with Jason at and during my stint at AOL. He had a unique approach to sales that every salesperson could learning something from.

Passing of John Borkoski - John was my next door neighbor in Locust Point. He cared deeply about his family and his neighborhood and always kept an eye out. He called it like he saw it. Haubert Street won't be the same without him.

Hopefully 2010 won't be more of the same.