Grocery List Challenge

img_5884You may be wondering why I’m sharing a grocery list with you. I’m kind of wondering that myself. The answer is because Cheryl, aka The Bag Lady, has a new Fun Challenge.

The idea behind her challenge is for us to reveal some things about our home life. The first one is to “take a picture of our current grocery list, whether it be on a scrap of paper, a napkin, etc.”

Before I (or my wife and I) go to the grocery store, I open the Notes app on my iPhone and tap out a list of items I need to pick up. Then, once I get to the grocery store, as I add the items to my physical shopping cart, I use the “strikethrough” feature on the Notes app to let me know that I have secured each item. That way, right before I get in the checkout line, I review my list to make sure I didn’t miss anything. It works for me.

Now how about showing us your shopping list?

Of Reblogs and Spam

I blog almost exclusively using my iPhone. And, as they say, “there’s an app for that.” It’s the WordPress app for iOS, the iPhone’s operating system.

According to WordPress you can “manage your WordPress blog right from your iOS device: create and edit posts and pages, upload your favorite photos and videos, view stats and reply to comments.”

For the most part, all that is true. I use the WordPress iOS app to meet most of my blogging needs, especially the reader, where I can go visit the blogs of the other bloggers I am following.

However, I noticed recently that, when I came across some posts from other bloggers that I thought were particularly reblog-worthy and I pressed the Reblog button on these posts, nothing happened.BE72560F-84CA-4047-AF8E-50F94AD6B94DSo I reached out to the Happiness Engineers to tell them that my Reblog button wasn’t working. After explaining in detail the steps I was following and attaching the requested screenshots, I finally heard back. Here is what they told me:

“The view option in the reader was intended to be a way to view a post as it would appear in a browser, but was not intended to be used as a web browser. Simulating web browsers like this is resource intensive and so we recently made some changes to make some of these buttons less functional. If you want to be able to use the reblog button, for now I would suggest going to your posts in a web browser and clicking on it there.

“I have been chatting with my developers about how this change is affecting the work flow of the users and we are looking for other options to improve these changes. I will add this concern to the conversation. Thanks for letting us know.”

Seriously? The brilliant, “customer-focused” minds at WordPress decided to make some features in the WordPress app “less functional”? WTF, WordPress?

Check your spam folder, please.

On an entirely unrelated note, at least a half a dozen of you have mentioned that my comments have ended up in your spam folders. Maybe the Happinesses Engineers are tired of hearing from me and this is their way of retaliating. But you may want to check your spam folders regularly — I check mine daily — to see if you’re missing any legitimate comments they may have been inadvertently swept up in the Akismet net.

Fandango’s Friday Flashback — July 19

Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year. I’ve had this blog for two years, so I have only 2017 and 2018 to draw from.

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of you earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember?

Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 19th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.

It would be great if everyone who reads this post would scroll down to the comments and check out the posts that others provide links to.


I originally published this post on July 19, 2017 in response to a One-Liner Wednesday prompt from Linda G. Hill.

IMG_2370Have you ever taken the time to contemplate the meaning of life? I don’t do it very often because I’m still not sure life has any real meaning.

No, I’m not a nihilist. I’m just not someone who feels the need to seek out an answer to life’s true purpose or what my role in this world should be, other than to survive as long as I can and to make the most of my short existence on this planet.

Okay, maybe I am a bit of a nihilist.

But the other morning I was sitting at the kitchen table reading the morning paper and drinking my morning coffee and I found myself wondering about life, what it all means, and how I fit in. So I asked my wife, who was sitting across from me busily working on that day’s newspaper crossword puzzle, what she thought the meaning of life is. Without even bothering to look up she said, “Huh?”

“What is the meaning of life?” I asked again.

“I don’t know,” she said, clearly disinterested. “Why don’t you ask Siri?”

So I picked up my iPhone, pressed the home button and said, “Siri, what is the meaning of life?”

This was Siri’s one-line answer:

IMG_0908

That works for me!

Battery Boost

F45E8A07-0361-4B68-BC57-A157667DF79CAccording to my iPhone’s Screen Time tracker, I average between 9-10 hours a day looking at my iPhone’s screen. You might think that’s a lot, but while I do have a laptop, I hardly ever use it. And I don’t have an iPad. So I use my iPhone for everything connected, including WordPress.

In fact, about two-thirds of my screen time is spent on my blog — writing posts, responding to comments, and reading and commenting on the posts of others. When not on WordPress, I am checking my newsfeed, using Google to search the internet, sending and receiving emails and text messages, checking the weather, reading books on my Kindle app, and playing solitaire while watching the news on TV.

My iPhone, an 8 Plus, is almost two years old and its battery life ain’t what it used to be. Most days, by around three or four in the afternoon, the battery icon in the upper right corner of my screen turns red, a sign that my battery is down to the last 20% of its charge. But I’ve still got another 6-7 hours of awake time. I don’t want to put my iPhone down for two of those hours while it’s charging.

So I bought a battery charging case for my iPhone. Not only does it protect my iPhone, like any other case will do, but if I press a tiny little button on the back of the case, it starts charging my iPhone without it leaving my hand or me having to be near an electrical outlet to plug it in to get the battery charged. The charging case doubles my iPhone’s battery life. And it only cost $35 on Amazon!

Yeah! Now I can spend even more uninterrupted time with my eyes glued to my iPhone’s screen. Life is great, no?

Fandango’s Friday Flashback — July 12

Each Friday I will publish a post I wrote on this exact date in a previous year. I’ve had this blog for two years, so I have only 2017 and 2018 to draw from.

Wouldn’t you like to expose your newer readers to some of you earlier posts that they might never have seen? Or remind your long term followers of posts that they might not remember?

Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year? You can repost your Friday Flashback post on your blog and pingback to this post. Or you can just write a comment below with a link to the post you selected.

If you’ve been blogging for less than a year, go ahead and choose a post that you previously published on this day (the 12th) of any month within the past year and link to that post in a comment.

It would be great if everyone who reads this post would scroll down to the comments and check out the posts that others provide links to.


I originally published this post on July 12, 2017 in response to a One-Liner Wednesday prompt from Linda G. Hill.

Self-Refection

Robert Burns

“O wad some Power the giftie gie us
To see oursels as ithers see us!”

The great Scottish poet, Robert Burns, made this astute observation in his poem, To a Louse.

Now I’m not a big fan of poetry, but back in high school English lit class, we did have to study some of the world’s great poets, including the aforementioned Robert Burns. Of all of his poems we read, one poem, and one particular line in that poem — the one I’ve quoted at the top of this post — stood out to me.

For a more contemporary interpretation of the quoted text, it essentially means, “It would be great if we could somehow have the gift of being able to see ourselves the way other people see us.”

We really can’t see ourselves as others see us, can we? We see ourselves through our own perspectives, our own perceptions, and our own reality. Few of us can understand how we really come across to those around us or to the world.

Wouldn’t it be nice if, even for just an hour or a day, we could know how others view us? I think that seeing ourselves as others see us would be a gift, but perhaps it would actually be a burden. No doubt, though, it would be illuminating.

Maybe you wouldn’t like what you see.

Maybe such a “gift” would cause you to only say and do things that would please others.

Maybe it’s better to stay true to yourself and behave in a way that is natural to you, as an individual, regardless of how you are viewed by others.

In the end, I suppose there’s nothing wrong with a little self-reflection.