Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Things that are Underrated (Edition: 1)

As I'm sitting here wasting minutes/hours of my life, I had the brilliant (translation: stupid) idea of starting this new series of topics as a means of kickstarting my blogging activities again. Many of these underrated things will come from the abstract recesses of my brain and will only serve to further drive home to my readership the point that I am, in fact, out of my mind. I would, however, be open to suggestions. Post them as comments, e-mail me...whatever.

So, without further ado, there are three underrated things for this blog:
- Thermos beverage containers
- Cruise control
- Shoe polish

Seriously, this brand makes amazing stuff. They have all sorts of products that control the temperature of food and beverages. Specific to this aside, though, is the beverage containers--specifically, the TherMax® double wall vacuum-insulated compact beverage bottle. As I looked at my bank account and saw it continue to dwindle, the first running expense that has been cut has been the morning coffee run at 7-11 in Thousand Oaks (Sorry Hearth...miss you, buddy).

My roommate has one of these fancy, space-age Thermos bottles that holds pretty much an entire pot of coffee. So, then, not only have I saved some cash by making coffee at home, I've found a way to get three times as much caffeine, and since jittery and with a racing pulse is the way I operate the best, I've been extra productive at work--a great development considering the rigors of Q4 at a PR agency. That's a different story.

This practice may or may not be taking years off my life, but I figure if I am going to fry my internal organs, I might as well take care of more than one at a time. My liver already hates me. Why not add my heart and my kidneys? Thank you, Thermos. You are driving me toward my grave.

Cruise Control
While the price of crude and, thus, the price of gas have fallen recently, they are still astronomical. This is a problem when I spend a good portion of my week commuting to and from work. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending upon how you look at it) for me, I spend ungodly amounts of time in my office and don't leave until the really nasty traffic is done. Thus, have pretty much free reign of at least a large portion of the 101.

Trying to keep my foot consistently on my gas pedal is a pain because 1. I am lazy and 2. it is impossible to keep a consistent speed. Combine these two, and I am all over the place with respect to the speed I drive when I am tired after a long day at work. Thus, I will find myself slowing down and then hitting the gas to speed back up and burning up inordinate amounts of gas in the process. The solution: cruise control. Implementing this policy has enabled me to go more than 400 miles on a tank of gas, when I was only getting between 360 and 375 if I was really efficient. Cruise I have come to love thee.

Shoe Polish
I can trace this one back to my days of playing ball at SC and the policy of shining my spikes before games. In high school I used to clean them before big games, but I never got into the habit of polishing until college. From there, it carried over to summer ball in Duluth and then on into real life away from the game.

The reality, though, is that shining my shoes has less to do with appearance and more to do with my state of mind. Look like the man; play like the man. It has become a ritual in advance of a big client pitch or a marketing event of some sort. PR is the business of managing perception and establishing a brand....where better to start than my own? Details are important. Shoes are a detail. For me, they will be a detail that sparkles.

So there you have it...the first installment of things that are underrated. This is, by no means, an exhaustive list. Rather, it is installment one of what should become a series.


  1. i will give you mad prop for the thermos (try a bubba keg available at wal mart)! but fuck you and your shoe polish! i polish my boots every day before the start of shift and sure as shit i end up running an over the edge rescue or end up doing something that makes them all dirty again. so it would be nice to go a week or two perhaps even three without having to polish those bacterial latent, shit covered, bloody, and lets not forget smelly ass boots. i say again FUCK YOU AND YOUR SHOE POLISH!

  2. i can appreciate any concept that gets caffeine into the blood stream. and back in the day, long, long ago in an era called the early 90's i loved my sam and libby white kicks. i washed them every day after school and then tossed them after a few wearings! i the wouldn't have been canvas the shoe polish would have been my pal.