I Test Drove a Countryman (and I Liked It!)

My husband has wondered if I would really enjoy driving one, since he got one as a loaner car when he took my MINI to the dealership in May. He got his answer today. This afternoon, I took a test drive of a Countryman S All 4 and all I can say is “Holy Jesus, I want that car.”

The handling was better than I expected for a vehicle of this size. I expected it to really lean in the curves, like my husband’s SUV, but I was pleasantly surprised by how little it leaned. It is heavier than the base model Cooper that is my current daily driver, but it really seems to compensate for that elegantly. The steering is nice and crisp, the wheel turned exactly as I thought a MINI should.

When I got my MINI originally, I didn’t even bother test driving an S. I really felt at the time that I didn’t “need” the extra zip, but it was so nice to put my foot on the gas going uphill on a 20 degree incline and have the car just go.… [Read More]

At the Phone Store Last Night…

We were shown an Android phone. My husband considered it briefly for our teenage son and I took one look at him and shook my head and said “No. I don’t want to have to deal with you getting frustrated over supporting the thing.” The salesman stood behind my husband and caught my eye and gave me a knowing smile.

That really said it all for me. I am told that a certain carrier’s Android phones suck, but to be honest, I have said similar things when looking at Blackberries or WebOS devices at other carrier’s stores and gotten a similar reaction. To me, that says that Android isn’t “better” than iOS.

Heck. It’s not even cheaper, most devices we saw were priced well above the 199$ it will cost you to get an iPhone.

I probably won’t understand the appeal of Android, ever. I suspect I will be using an iPhone until someone comes out with these cool wafer thin touch screen phones that fit in your wallet right next to the one dollar bills in the bill slot.… [Read More]

Finer Things


“A dog has no use for fancy cars or big homes or designer clothes. Status symbols mean nothing to him. A water-logged stick will do just fine. A dog judges others not by their color or creed or class but by who they are inside. A dog doesn’t care if you are rich or poor, educated or illiterate, clever or dull. Give him your heart and he will give you his.” – John Grogan

Someone I know posted this quote from the final pages of Marley and Me on Facebook this morning. It was written from the heart, out of love for a yellow Lab that was not entirely unlike my Lucy, who is pictured above, with my other best friend, Mugen. They look so serious, because they are begging for cheese. They’re Labs. They take their food very, very seriously.

Just in case the picture above isn’t enough of an indicator of how much I love my dogs, and Labrador Retrievers in particular, I’ll share with you the fact that Marley and Me is one of my favorite books.… [Read More]

iTunes in the Cloud: What More Do You Need?

I have been desperately trying to put this blog post together for a week or so now. The reality is, there’s just too much about iOS5 that I love. Suffice it to say that we have iOS5 running on my old 3GS so that my husband can figure out how it works, and maybe, someday, finish that iPhone app that I keep telling him he needs to build. In the mean time, I’ve been carrying the thing around and using it where I would normally be using my iPhone 4.

I could tell you all sorts of cool things about iOS5 that Apple did not talk about at WWDC. But that’s not what has me excited as an end user of iOS5. What has me excited, is iTunes in the Cloud. Being able to sync my books, videos and music over the air is just a God send. This all started because of my mother, of course.… [Read More]

WWDC 2011: Back to the Dev

Every year, I watch WWDC with interest. I watch it from a consumer standpoint, and not a developer standpoint. I fully expected Apple to release a hardware product at WWDC this year, but last year, the developers were quite upset that Apple had forgotten about them in all the iPhone 4 hype. Certainly Gizmodo’s checkbook journalism and the sensation that this caused in the media, so huge actually that the story reached CNN, was a show stealer.

This year, was entirely unlike last year. This year, the WWDC keynote delivered by Apple focused on developer tools and developer features in Apple’s upcoming offerings for their devices. Of course, I’m talking about OSX Lion, iCloud and iOS 5.

There is a great article on iCloud by Andy Ihnatko in the Chicago Sun-Times that tells you everything you need to know about iCloud in a way that only Mr. Ihnatko can. You can read the article for yourself, but this quote sums it up nicely, “Apple forcefully made the point that iCloud is meant to do no less than replace the PC in its current role as the hub of the digital experience, and relegate it to the status of Just Another Device that syncs data between itself and everything else”.… [Read More]