Monday, February 4, 2008

Being an Article

I experienced a little notoriety today as I was the subject in an article on ewaste in the local paper. Anyone that's been to my basement knows I'm a bit of a packrat. But, I'll let you read the article and be assured that I will only dispose of my ewaste via a recycler--not the county dump--though this by no means assures good things will happen as this cautionary tale relays.

But I did want to talk to you a bit about being the subject of a news article. I volunteered for this, so there was no big surprise in the article. The newspaper solicited people willing to talk about their collection of obsolete electronics and I was happy to take part. Shortly after volunteering on line, I was contacted by Hallie Woods via email and she arranged to call and interview me. I assumed she'd be talking to a number of people and take a variety of pics for the article--bad assumption. She sent Rich Abrahamson over to shoot my electronics last Saturday. He showed up and re-interviewed me, filling in some background about ewaste, why I had so much equipment, etc and then we descended to our basement (which I jokingly call "The Pit of Despair".) I didn't stage anything--there are "spare parts", obsolete computers, keyboards, CD drives, etc scattered throughout my basement, but Rich settled on the "monitor table" as being the best photo-op. This is a table full of old CRTs that either aren't working or are so archaic that they have no value--and in fact are pretty expensive to operate. He then had the idea of working me into the picture....

This morning, I check the newspaper, and voila..... I'm an article. It's kind of a surreal feeling--and I'm quite happy that I didn't get into the newspaper some other way.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

English Toffee

I've been considering a series of blogs about the coffee shops in Loveland. Loveland, Colorado, my home base, has a wide variety of local, regional, and national coffee shops. And, of course, their specialties and qualities vary.

I've been prompted to initiate this investigation by one of the newest shops in Loveland, DazBog in downtown (or are we calling it Old Town now?)


The crew at Dazbog, like any chain upscale coffee shop, is inconsistent and full of quirks. They do however know how to make an excellent English Toffee latte--or better still, sugar free English Toffee. Depending on who is behind the counter--you might get perky, professional, business-y, or personable--will determine your "experience" but they all make a tasty beverage.

The site is also "inconsistent". Their wifi, though free, is not fully open. You have to ask the barista for the passphrase (though it may still be "coloradorockies" unless they change it because of this posting.) You can also find a variety of other "free" wifi signals in the store from the surrounding apartment complex--several generic "linksys" sites appear to be wide open.

The owners have thoughtfully provided an enclosed meeting room for groups of 6-10 people at no cost--other than a few cups of coffee. Each of the four northern Colorado Dazbogs are decorated differently--though you should be able to find a "cushy" section and more "worky" sections in each of them to suit your mood or purpose. I was impressed and satisfied with their handling of the espresso equipment and, as a coffee novice, confused by their treatment of my coffee mug--they pre-heated it with hot water prior to filling it with delicious English Toffee latte. The prices are a bit steep--more like that other big chain. And, one especially eerie aspect of Dazbog, speaking of that other chain, they pump in Starbucks XM Satellite radio cafe channel during the weekdays.... Huh?