Spotify Premium: Like Scour in the 90s, But Legal

Who remembers Scour?

I have vivid memories of working at my college job, sitting at my desk in the office next to my co-worker, Jeff, and one of us getting a song stuck in our head. Off to Scour, to download and listen to something random, like the theme from the A-Team, or some esoteric 80s song, or some freedom rock (turn it up!).

Did I know it was shady? Sure. Did I care? Nope. It was available, and there wasn’t exactly another avenue for me to quench my immediate musical desires back in 1999, and it was before the days of packet-sniffers that would throttle bandwidth or flag me for peer-to-peer activity, so…

Fast forward 18 years to 2017.* When I get Billy Ocean stuck in my head, I pull up Spotify on my work laptop — I pay a subscription fee of about $10 a month for Premium — and search for “Caribbean Queen.” I get an entire compilation album of Billy Ocean’s greatest hits, and I listen to the sounds of elementary school for a good half hour. Unlike some 20 years ago, though, I don’t have to wait 15 minutes for a 3MB mp3 to download over the 10/100 BaseT ethernet connection.

And it’s completely legal.

*Side note: I still can’t get over being 40 years old and so vividly remembering multiple decades.

Moving My Favorite White Rose

I decided over the winter that I need to move all the plantings out of my current rose border and let it grass over. I have more borders than I can manage, honestly, and that one just doesn’t have the impact that the others do. So, two unidentified white climbing roses and one Dortmund climbing rose need to find new homes, plus a hosta and a smattering of white irises that I only recently divided.

This morning was the perfect day to move a rose: cool and overcast, with the forsythia in bloom, coming off of a few solid days of soaking rain.

That doesn’t mean I wasn’t still nervous as hell. I’ve never moved a rose before, and I didn’t want to kill my favorite long-bloomer. But I went for it, anyway.

Before in the Rose Border


Sears 35 RF Test Roll

Sears 35 RF

I picked up this camera at Savers for $3.99, all wrapped in a plastic bag with its flash, original lens cap, and a PC cord. At first glance, I mistakenly thought it was a trashcam — that is, a cheap plastic 35mm jobbie with a few rudimentary settings and a shitty lens. I bought it under that assumption, because I like the variability of trashcams. (File under: Life is like a box of chocolates)

When I realized what I’d actually bought, I was over the moon: a Sears-branded Ricoh rangefinder. It had gummy seals (and lots of them) and needed a battery, but the shutter appeared to work. I just needed to get it clean and tested. Knowing my love of rangefinders, I expected that this might end up on my film camera short-list, so I was excited to get going on it.


Had another dream last night that @altonbrown was my personal kitchen tutor. My subconscious is reminding me that my knife skills need work.

Casserole Remorse

Two casseroles

The prep time on this casserole recipe from Cooking Light may not have taken into account my lack of a lackey to be my Sous chef. That 50 minutes ended up being closer to an hour and a half — plus, I got interrupted once by my son. That was my entire stretch of “me time” that I get after my son goes to bed, and I’m not entirely sure it was worth the effort.

I may appreciate this as Time Well Spent come tomorrow, when I stick one of these in the oven for 25 minutes and poof! dinner is ready. Or in another couple of weeks, when I make the casserole I’m about to freeze.

Honestly, though, unless this is The Best Damn Casserole I’ve Ever Had, I’m unlikely to go to the trouble again.