Oct

21

Posted by : Patrick | On : October 21, 2014

So I decided to give that a try… McDonalds used to have some of the most rancid, heavily caffeinated, in dire need of cream and sugar to make it barely tolerable crud anywhere in the world (or at least, anywhere I tried it, which was mostly western Canada.)

Awful, but effective.

Over the last few years, they’ve embraced coffee as something more than just a quick and nasty method of staying awake – they’ve improved their brew to the point where it’s actually one of the best you can get from a chain store that isn’t focused on coffee, and better than some of those too. It’s smooth, rich, and tasty. Puts Tim Hortons to shame at the very least (Tim’s is better known for speed and consistency than quality anyways)

So I was walking through Safeway, and I saw some McCafe K-Cups. Since i have a Keurig brewer, I thought what the heck, let’s see how it measures up

So yeah.

McCafe from a Keurig is good – but. Rather than a standard k-cup, they’ve put a plastic and fabric cup inside a plastic wrapped container with a peel off top – Keurig is already bad for waste, and they went and doubled it. That’s disheartening, because it’s actually very decent coffee. Most of what you can get for a single serve brewer is passable, but very few options are delicious. McCafe is.

Sadly, I won’t be venturing down that road again. It’s not worth the extra waste – for a similar price I can get a less wasteful brew from Marley Coffee (outstanding even from a k-cup) that’s even better. I’d highly recommend their “Lively Up” blend, which is dark and rich without being bitter. It stands up well to most coffee house brews, although if you want a decent latte, you still have to leave the house if you want the best. Or invest a couple grand in a proper espresso rig with a well constructed built in steamer (think $2500 rather than $250). For single cup home coffee lovers, Marley is an excellent choice.  McCafe could have been too, but sadly their over-packaging makes them a poor choice even if it tastes great.

Sep

05

Posted by : Patrick | On : September 5, 2014

So after my weekly leg stabbing incident (Interferon Beta injector pen for MS) I’m contemplating switching to another drug.

The one I’m most seriously considering is a new pill, one taken daily – annual cost is $33,000, which is roughly $90.42 per day. about $170 a week more than the injection, and about $10 a week more than I make. (good health insurance is good and very important kids, never forget that.)

Also, the first dose can slow your heart to a dangerous level (side effect that apparently only happens on the first pill), and 2 people have died from severe reactions due to herpes infection. Since I had the chicken pox when I was a kid, and chicken pox is a form of herpes, there’s always that chance. If I switch, despite all the odds, I’ll still have to make sure my dog can go to a good home should it kill me. Anyone who will provide a good home for a gorgeous little pug who loves everyone? If you’ve met her but not spent time you’ll think she’s nuts, but I you know her you’ll know how calm and sweet she is most of the time. She LOVES people and dogs, and barks at birds and squirrels. Not sure if she likes them or wants to kill them, not going to find out if I can avoid it. Anyways, let me know. She’s good with everyone, doesn’t bite hard (she’ll play nip, but never broken skin or left a bruise), and cuddles with people while they sleep. Recent picture at the end of this post.

If it doesn’t kill me (most likely scenario), the efficacy is 50% – so in a year of no attacks, the risk is for nothing. In a year of one attack, there’s a 50% chance it won’t happen (damned good odds, compared to 30% for stabbing myself weekly)

Honestly, I haven’t decided for sure yet. But I’m leaning towards yes – the no stabby part is pretty stellar in my books, I like that idea.

potential hair loss and liver damage aside, it’s a pretty appealing idea. Oh yeah, back to monthly blood tests, and an EKG (not sure how many of those, or how often, at least one at the start), instead of a blood test every 6 months on the Interferon.

Everything is a trade-off – Interferon, as a side effect, leaves you feeling flu symptoms for a day or so after an injection… life of the party and all that. This would no longer be an issue, assuming I survived it. I could end up bald, or with perpetual runs (might be worse than feeling like I have the flu to be completely honest), but if the symptoms are mild, I’d get my Friday nights back.

Anyways, here’s a picture of Kaia – I’m off to cuddle her and watch “You’re the Worst”, my new favourite TV show.

2014-09-01 13.26.17

 

Jun

09

Posted by : Patrick | On : June 9, 2014

2014-06-08 20.14.152014-06-02 22.04.48

So I have a new apartment, yay!

I’ve been slowly working on putting it all together, and it’s getting closer every day – I still have a lot of stuff to sort and organize and figure out, but there are places to sit, and eat and everything is kind of here now, so that part is done. The “living alone for the first time” thing is off too a pretty good start.

Other than finding out the elevator will be going down for a month in less than a month. Living on the 6th floor and having issues with fatigue could make that an unpleasant experience… but at least it’ll get me into better condition I suppose. Have to minimize the number of heavy loads over that month.

May

24

Posted by : Patrick | On : May 24, 2014

So 3freaks.net will be experiencing an outage later this coming week – taking the server down to move it to a new location.

it’s going in a whizzy new apartment, which will in fact be the first time I’ve ever had my very own apartment/hosting venue… seems odd, I’ve wanted to live on my own for ages, but I’ve always had roommates, or a girlfriend living with me. As of next Saturday, nope, just me, all by my lonesome. I’m pretty excited!

Also, starting a new job on Wednesday, so there’s that. I guess I’ll only 1/2 be alone, since this little one will be moving with me as well

2014-05-19 01.15.58

Apr

20

Posted by : Patrick | On : April 20, 2014

So we’ve been here since Tuesday night, and it’s true that this is the city that never sleeps… kind of

While many of the local businesses and dining establishments are open 24 hours, it’s really a pretty small subset of what’s here.

I have to admit, the city is beautiful, and getting off the strip, there are lots of gems and deals to be found – the Vegas Premium Outlets are an excellent source of cheap and awesome goods – I picked up 3 pairs of shoes from the DC outlet for less than they sell 1 pair on their website or retail in Canada. (Only 2 were for myself)

Had a burger at BurGR in the Planet Hollywood Casino (the Gordon Ramsay burger joint) and one of those milkshake/pudding fusion drinks they sell, and it was one of the tastiest burgers I’ve ever eaten. The shake was delicious and kind of terrifying. Still throws me for a loop when they ask how I’d like a burger cooked, since in Canada, burgers are simply cooked well done, end of story. E-coli and all that noise.

We also went for a meal at The Peppermill (restaurant near the start of the strip) – it’s about as kitsch as kitsch comes, with neon decor, fake trees, and menu items bigger than your freaking head (no, seriously). The table beside us ordered 2 ice cream sundaes. When the first arrived someone exclaimed “holy shit!” rather loudly. They promptly cancelled the second – the first was easily big enough for all 7 of them. Pretty sure the 1 sundae had an entire gallon bucket of Neapolitan ice cream under all the whipped cream and fruit. In fact, they didn’t finish it. A breakfast at our table had a stack of 3 pancakes that were easily 1 foot wide and pretty thick as well.

I rather enjoyed seeing Motorhead and Megadeth play live at The Palms (also where we’re staying), quite the blast from the past – both bands lived up to their superstar billing, and I heard some songs that I forgot I knew, rocked out, and was crazy sore the following morning. Not sure if it was the concert, or walking about 5 miles before the concert, but getting out of bed was a chore the next morning.

Last night we headed down to downtown Las Vegas, and it was pretty cool to see the older hotels, Fremont street with the live performers and gaudy casinos, and the crowds that reminded me of the Calgary Stampede – except in a place that’s open year round. I’m sure it’s a little less crazy on a regular weeknight, but it was crazy regardless. An outdoor mall with a roof? That lights up? with fish? cool.

As someone who doesn’t drink or gamble, I was skeptical as to how much fun I’d have in this city, but after the past few days, I have to give Las Vegas a hearty two thumbs up – there really is something here for everyone. I’ll definitely be back at the next available opportunity, there’s so much to see and do, and only so much energy to spread around. Plus it’s almost invariably sunny and hot during the day, with cooler, but comfortably warm evenings – walking around in a t-shirt and shorts is rarely going to leave you feeling chilled, although sunscreen is probably a good idea if you spend much time outside during the day (hot. damned hot. it IS the desert after all). If you’re on the strip air-conditioned shelter is never far away thankfully.