October 24, 2006

Wherein I review the Gillette Fusion

Apparently Gillette wants me to buy more expensive razor cartridges. Last week a brand new Gillette Fusion—that's their men's razor with 5 blades and a single trimming blade on the back—arrived in my mailbox.

I finally got around to actually trying it out today, and it's better than I thought it would be. A lot better. I had written it (and those stupid vibrating models) off as a gimmick to put them ahead of Schick's Quattro, but the Fusion actually gave me a closer shave, and the single blade was much less unwieldy than the Mach 3 at making tiny adjustments. Admittedly, I have the Mach 3 down to a science when it comes to cutting in minor changes, but it's still a bit of a crapshoot. With the Fusion, it's much easier to clean up the edges or pick up spider legs.

I also managed to get through shaving my entire face without nicking myself once, which is an unusual occurrence. But it has happened in the past, so I can't give the Fusion the sole credit for it. I'm sure it does help they've added a larger rubber area, which catches your shaving gel and keeps you lubed up right before the stroke.

That said, there is one major caveat to the good things I've found. Well, two caveats.

1: You really have to lay on the heat and soften your hair before shaving. Otherwise, it feels like the Fusion is ripping every damn hair off your face. The Mach 3 seems to be a lot more forgiving in this regard.

2: The price. You can buy 8 Mach 3 Turbo cartridges for $16. 8 Fusion cartridges are $25. For that same $25, you can buy a 12 pack of M3 Turbos, pay the tax, and still have some leftover for a soda.

Posted by Colin at 11:23 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 20, 2006

The L Word

I rented a Canon 70-200 f4 L for a week from RentGlass.com yesterday. It'll be here on Monday.

The fact that I probably could have "rented" it for a similar price by buying and then reselling it notwithstanding, I'm excited. I've been itching to see how well the L quality really stands up to the hype. And it's the time of year where it's mighty beautiful up north an hour or so.

Granted, I neglected to remember that next weekend is going to be incredibly hard to work anything into. Bad planning on my part, but I'll make it work.

Posted by Colin at 6:05 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 17, 2006

Automobiles suck.

Too many hundreds of dollars later, I have my Jeep back.

I don't honestly know if it's "fixed" or not. Haven't had the opportunity to hit the freeway yet, since I picked it up during rush hour.

The replacement steering gear did tighten things up considerably, so I'd think it should help, if not actually solve the problem. Unless the problems I've been having were never steering-related in the first place, in which case that's $600 down the hole just like the previous way-too-many dollars that didn't do much.

Please please please be fixed. I'm getting sick of chasing this problem only to never have it resolved. And it's been disgustingly expensive along the way.

Posted by Colin at 9:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 9, 2006

Sanity

I inadvertently took a mental health day on Saturday.

It's been ages since I've been able to turn off my internal monologue. Too many things on my plate, too much multitasking... the end result has been an inability to go from a half dozen thoughts to absolutely zero.

This changed on Saturday when I cruised on up to the northcountry to spend some time with my parents. We hiked a trail for a while, then headed back to Black Canyon Lake. Sitting there on the shore, the wind whipping through the grass and the pine trees, my brain simply shut off.

It was beautiful. No thoughts, no cares, just a moment in time to unwind and enjoy the cool mountain air.

Saturday only proved that I really do need to make more time for myself to escape and blow off some steam. I haven't even been following my workout plan because making time for it is a whole other chore in itself. With the gorgeous weather, that will now have to change.

Make time for vital escapes: Check.

Posted by Colin at 11:20 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 4, 2006

Splenda

I accidentally bought some juice with Splenda the other day. Apple Cranberry.

And I have to say, it's the first product I've tried sweetened with Splenda that almost doesn't taste like Splenda. The tartness of the cranberry juice just about hides the awful bitterness of Splenda, but eventually fails miserably when your tongue realizes "Wait a minute, cranberries don't taste quite like that." And then that awkward bitter note remains when you swallow the juice.

I'm glad I don't have to use only artificial sweeteners, because I'm reasonably certain I'd have to cut my own tongue out to continue living.

Posted by Colin at 9:50 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

A Simple Fix?

The more I learn about my car, the more I loathe the garages that have worked on it in the past.

Latest in the saga of Jeep problems is horrendous steering. It's consistently inconsistent, occasionally happy to do its own thing entirely and wander off to the right. The local shop has repeatedly told me they can't replicate any problem, and that everything visually looks fine.

Poking around beneath the vehicle this weekend, though, I discovered their analysis was just a bit optimistic. Not only is the steering box not bolted to the body (which is just about #1 on Jeep's list of "Reasons your steering sucks") following their having moved said box, but one of the grease bladders on the steering linkage is hideously deformed.

If taking care of these two issues solves the steering problems I've been having, I will be simultaneously elated and outraged.

Posted by Colin at 12:44 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack