Pro squash player
Pro squash player
The summer forest fire season here in British Columbia has been driving me crazy for many years now, and to alleviate some of the nuisance with it all I have tried out many types of consumer products that seemed like they could help. With each of these products I say whether or not I have tried them and I give a subjective rating out of ten.
1. Personal electric air purifier.
A couple months ago I bought a personal electronic air purifier and I think it might actually be useful this summer. 6/10.
2. Indoor air purification.
i) Low cost solution: box fan with dual Merv 13s. Untested.
Based on tutorials like this: https://marshallhansendesign.com/2012/01/02/studio-operations/
I only just ordered this fan so I can’t give a personal testimony, but these are the parts I’m going to be working with:
ii) Moderate cost solution: standard portable air purifier. 6/10.
ii) Expensive solution: Industrial air purifier. Untested.
3. Fireproof document organizer.
4. Fire extinguisher.
I cannot personally testify to the performance of this particular fire extinguisher, but it’s similar to mine, and listed at a pretty good price given that it has free shipping. It’s your classic “A:B:C class” extinguisher: “For use on Class A (ordinary combustibles), Class B (Flammable liquid) spills or Fires involving live electrical equipment (Class C)”. Untested.
5. Personal misting and cooling.
I have tested a number of personal accessories meant to keep you clean and cool, such as: gel masks, cooling headbands, shemaghs, gel hats, cooling patches, neck gaiters, cooling mats, and spray bottles.
i) Ice Eye Mask by FOMI Care. 3/10
iii) Headsweats Protech Hat. 5/10
6. Indoor cooling.
I don’t recommend portable air conditioners like the one I have for the reasons detailed here:
i) Low cost solution: evaporative “swamp cooler”.
Consumers typically find these things to be underwhelming for several reasons: they raise humidity and they need to be replenished enough to be annoying. I have never used one, but I thought I would include the highest rated one I could see on Amazon in case it interests some readers.
ii) Expensive solution: window air conditioner.
7. Bed cooling.
i) Moderate cost solution: directional attachments for your AC unit. 9/10.
Rather than buy an expensive cooling mattress, I have found it fruitful to jam a rectangular duct connector on to my AC unit and run a hose into my bed or to my laptop dock.
Imperial Manufacturing Duct End Boot 3-1/4 X 10 X 4In GV0650
ii) Expensive solution: specialized bed cooling unit. Untested.
8. Other things I would like to try.
i) Cooling shirts.
Sony launched the Reon Pocket but it’s not available in North America yet for some reason.
If you want to buy a cooling shirt here in North America, you’ll have to settle for something like this:
ii) Outdoor misting systems.
iii) Door seals.
Fall 2017 video selections:
Shoeless Joe Jackson:
Alfred the Great:
Primitive tech guy:
To pay my rent in Vancouver I’ve almost always had to live with roommates. Just in my current place, I’ve lived with over thirty different people over the course of nine years. Despite never having wanted to live like this, it is unquestionably one of the best things that has ever happened to me. With very few exceptions, each of my roommates became a fascinating individual to me. I wont go into too much detail about this at the moment, for what made these people fascinating is precisely their details. It is very difficult to distill their mutual description into meaningful generalities about “people” being this way or that; beyond of course, the dispositions one would expect in people fortunate enough to experience Vancouver.
One man that I became friends with as a roommate, was working in construction doing drywall installation. His routine was actually shocking to me. He would wake up at 5am each work day, light candles around his bed, make a wholesome breakfast, and meditate for upwards of an hour in this setting. He would then transit to the suburbs where he would be treated as dispensable by his employers, in weather that really has no defense, other than it being not necessarily as bad as the rest of Canada. To make the job interesting, he would treat the geometry of the drywall installation as thought it were a game like Tetris. Added to this wisdom, he always made a point of purchasing the highest quality tools that he could afford. He described how often other men on the site would go months without purchasing their own tools, showing up empty-handed each day. I had never considered this scenario, but it was obvious that better tools would be worth it.
interlude: At this exact point in writing this unplanned post, I coincidentally just missed a video conference with him that I was scheduled to have: a very infrequent occurrence in itself. As I was bemoaning life in the city, he bestowed an additional nugget of wisdom: “sometimes you have to learn not to see”. At some point in our conversation I dislocated my shoulder, just by stretching out a bit. This happens frequently to me. Today it was at an agonizing downward angle, where I had to work against gravity to pull my arm up and back into the shoulder socket. Unfortunately, I was not able to reach it properly with the other arm to pull it up and out. Adrenaline hits after about 10 seconds I find, and sure enough, the pain is smothered and I can manipulate the shoulder like a piece of dead meat. This took about 90 seconds total in my estimation which is a bit longer than my average of about 30-50 seconds. The longer it takes, the worse I find the come down from the adrenaline. I got decent cold sweats from this one but the silver lining is that someone witnessed it. It’s much worse when nobody understands the agony.
Continuing on, the reason for writing this post was simply to share a subset of the electronic crap that is now part of my “travel kit”.
I will do an item inventory post at some point, with links to the products under my Amazon affiliate code. It feels greasy doing that but it seems like a fair exchange. No grease in that really.
A second point of interest on the topic of computer work, is on the right side of this finger nail:
I could only get this level of detail with the cheap little macro lens I had laying around, but what you’re looking at is a little nuisance of a hang-nail-like wound caused by dragging my finger too hard across my laptop trackpad. Micro friction pain. Not really as sexy as surviving macro friction pain but I think it’s not unreasonable to start thinking critically about that continuum.
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