the caterpillar salad

My family had lunch this past Sunday at an Italian restaurant chain known for their soup, salad, and breadsticks. My brother was finishing his second helping of salad when he noticed an anomaly next to a crouton: a caterpillar.

He was about to eat it before he noticed its odd shape and the worm juice that squeezed out when he squished it with his fork. After my sister snapped a picture with her new phone, we alerted a waiter of the deceased larva that made its way on one of our plates.

The manager on duty came by our table to apologize, comped my brother’s meal and also gave us a $50 gift card. Although our stomachs were a little uneasy for the remainder of our visit, we still enjoyed each other’s company, the prompt service, and the restaurant’s delicious food.

We weren’t furious of the occurrence, because the truth is that caterpillars eat leaves so something like this is bound to happen. The restaurant staff handled the situation professionally, and this incident will not keep us from returning in the future. However, we will always relish the time that my brother found a caterpillar in his salad every time the topic of finding something strange in your food is brought up and every time we dine at this Italian restaurant. When we’re there, we’re Family.

the factors to consider when purchasing dvd+r media

When purchasing writable optical discs, a couple factors should be considered in order to make a solid decision and a good investment. DVD+R media is usually sold in spindles, and the bigger spindles cost much less per disc than the ten-packs or bundles that come with jewel cases.

The first factor to consider is value. When buying the discs, I usually go with 100-disc spindles. I don’t want to have to make multiple trips to the electronics store to pick up more, and I do plenty of burning. I’m used to seeing a spindle of a hundred discs for around $30.

I found a sale on two 50-disc spindles of Memorex 16x DVD+R discs for $20 and free shipping. Not only do you get a great price for high-quality discs, you don’t have to waste any time or gas going to the electronics store to buy them because they’re shipped to you at no extra cost.

Don’t waste your money buying ten-packs that come with cases. Those cases are prone to cracking, and the price per disc is a rip-off. Invest in a Case Logic carrying case that holds 100+ discs. I own many of these cases, and they have yet to let me down. They’re high-quality cases that keep your discs in a safe place to prevent scratches.

The second factor is quality. I choose brands that are well-known in the business and have proven themselves to be trustworthy. I usually go with either Sony, Memorex, or TDK when choosing a spindle of 16x DVD+R media. Selecting better brands means a much lower fail rate when burning discs than buying off-brands. Surprisingly, most DVD+R discs are priced around the same, so the recognized brands are just as affordable as the others.

If you have loads of data that you need to burn to discs or just want to back up your DVD collection, then buying DVD+R media in bulk is the way to go. Even if you’re just planning on burning a dozen discs, go ahead and buy a hundred of them. You may take longer to use them up, but you’ve saved yourself some cash by avoiding the small-quantity markup and repeated trips to the electronics store.

the movers and moving quotes

Due to the unstable economy, many Americans are packing up and moving elsewhere. Some families have been settled for years and even decades before the companies they worked for fell apart as finances began to collapse causing a domino effect of unemployment across the fifty states.

Moving can be a hassle for anyone. The least expensive way would be the back-breaking DIY method of renting the truck, loading it up, and driving it to Point B, unloading, and repeating the process until everything has been moved. This is unfeasible for families that have many belongings and may be moving across the country. Their best solution would be to get moving quotes to see what their options are in hiring a full-service moving company. If they are only moving locally, then they can get quotes from a local moving company that may charge them less than a national mover depending on the distance.

Stairs can be trouble when moving couches, LCD TVs, and king-size beds. If heavy furniture needs to be moved into storage or from one home to another, then looking into a furniture moving company would be a better decision since they specialize in moving furniture.

the broken window prevention

The state of the American economy has caused some absent-minded people to take desperate measures in order to survive. Breaking and entering to steal another person’s valuables is one method that low-life hooligans use to get the money they need for whatever reason. Whether they are paying back a loan shark or getting their next fix, one problem stems from another and may involve your home as a target.

To make your home safer, installing a Home Security System is the best solution. Not only will this prevent burglary, the system has options that can contact the fire department in case the house is burning to the ground or an ambulance in case your cousin falls off the roof and cracks open his skull.

When a prowler sees that blue ADT octagon posted near your front door, he will know better than try to break in. He will find somewhere else to burglarize that was not smart enough to have a Security System installed.

the fly traps

Since the weather has warmed up, the bugs are back. Maggots feast on wet garbage and turn into flies that leave microscopic tracks wherever they land. Houseflies are fast flying insects that can be difficult to catch and kill. Don’t waste your time and energy trying to rid your home of these creatures. Leave it up to technology.

Instead of hiring an exterminator, try do-it-yourself pest control. The saying goes that it’s better to catch flies with honey. One of the best ways is with a fly light. Flies buzz toward the attractive light and go *ZAP* as soon as they set their legs on the electrocutors. Many fly control solutions are available at different price ranges and can be something as simple as a glue trap or as advanced as commercial fly lights with large capture areas to prevent fly fallout.

the 5-4-3-2-1’s

I haven’t updated you guys with what’s been going on with me for a while, so here’s that post.

I’ve been working at my new job for a couple months now, and I like it. It’s a job. It keeps the bills paid and keeps me from starving. Some days are difficult to wake up to at four in the morning especially if I went to bed late. My circadian rhythm takes a couple days to adjust, but it’s not too bad.

My weekly schedule has become relatively routine. I’ll get into detail about it right now, because I have your attention and it’s fun to re-read these in the future to see what I was doing back then. Ready or not…

The 40-hour work week seems to go by almost as quickly as the weekend, since I have a routine that I follow as much as possible if nothing else interrupts it or a scheduling conflict occurs. I must warn you that this isn’t very exciting but makes for a good indulgent ramble.

I work from 5am to 1pm Monday thru Friday. I work out to the gym for an hour after work on Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. I go to the library after work on Tuesdays to borrow more materials to expand my data collection and to return materials I’ve checked out from the previous week that I’m done using. On Wednesdays, I meet Mare down at campus have lunch somewhere nearby. After we finish lunch, I’ll pass by the comic shop to pick up my week’s pull.

I enjoy FOX and NBC television programming Monday thru Friday with my favorite shows. If I am home anywhere between 2pm-4pm, then I am usually watching Rachael Ray at 2, The Doctors at 3, and/or Jeopardy! at 4. I don’t watch much of the news from 5-6:30, but I always try to catch Wheel of Fortune at 6:30. Between 5-6:30, I’ll either do something on the computer or spend the time doing chores or reading something. After Wheel, the evening programming goes underway which will usually take me to my bedtime.

On Mondays, Heroes comes on at 8. We’ve been watching more Chuck mainly because it’s right after Wheel and before Heroes and we usually eat dinner around that time. I didn’t like Chuck much in the beginning, but I’ve seen so many episodes I just watch it.

On Tuesday, American Idol is currently going on followed by the results show the next day. I don’t watch Fringe, so I stop watching TV after 8 on Tuesdays. Wednesday has Lie to Me before the Idol results show, and I’m enjoying that show. Thursday programming is a conflict between FOX and NBC right now, but I go with FOX for Bones and Hell’s Kitchen and catch up on NBC comedy over the weekend via Mininova.

I try to do something other than watch TV after Wheel of Fortune, because Howie Do It just isn’t good. I try to go out to the Hideout every other week on Friday and have been keeping up with it since I started. The Hideout is a great pub nearby which has an excellent jukebox selection. On weeks that I just want to stay in, I’ll chill out at the apartment watching ISO TV, a DVD, playing PS3,

I keep Saturdays and Sundays open for whatever. I try to visit my parents every couple weeks at least. I take care of something that I am unable to do during the week or do something that was either happening on the weekend or is best saved for the weekend. For example, yesterday was Record Store Day. I had to get me a copy of Dookie on vinyl. When Mare and I arrived at Waterloo Records only about ten minutes after they opened, all of the copies were gone. Fortunately, a guy put down the last copy and Mare scooped it right up. Score!

On most Sundays, I like to do next to nothing or whatever wasn’t done on Saturday. After the weekend is up, the process is repeated. Peace out.

the credit cards club

The average American consumer is unable to pay for everything all at once for the most part. Credit is the friend and enemy to millions of people who use credit cards regularly in order to afford everything they want and need from day to day even if they do not have the money upfront.

People with good credit scores can get 0% intro APR credit cards. Transferring balances while an account has this promotion will save money on interest. Consumers should be aware what the normal APR is for when the 0% intro APR ends and defaults to the normal APR.

People who use credit on a regular basis whether it’s personal or business can look into cash back credit cards which will give them points for shopping that will result in bonuses for using the card frequently. Consumers should be aware of all the fine print associated with this promotion as well as any credit card they are deciding to apply for.

Credit is a good thing if used wisely. If spending gets out of hand, then credit card users can find themselves in heaps of financial burden and at the bottom of a hole where they cannot get themselves out.