Tuesday, March 12, 2013

It's All About The Content Baby!

When I first started out running the road you had very few options for car content. That is to say if you were going to log a lot of road miles your choices were either the AM / FM radio, cassette tapes, silence or if the weather was nice the sound of wind with an undercurrent of what passed for earlobe entertainment.

As time has went on the advent of satellite radio. But you had to be in a Ford branded radio to get it and then later your choices doubled because you could also get it in a Chevy brand.

There was stil the option of regular radio and then as cassette tapes were on their way out you could listen to CD's.

Now you have MP3 players on your phone. Internet radio on your phone and also the aforementioned satellite radio in the car or on your phone.

CD's have went the way of the dodo bird. Which is a good thing because tapes and CD's take up space. and they weigh a ton when packed into your carry on or in your checked luggage.

Which reminds me you also have books that come on your phone or tablet. So now when packing your bag you no longer have to make room for paperback or hard cover books.

This is definitely a case where technology is a great thing. I listen to 3 different pod casts on a regular basis. Adam Carolla, Jay Mohr and Marc Maron. I also have only the music I want to listen to downloaded on both my phone and tablet.

I carry around 3 digital books at all times. I also have a subscription to XM / Sirius radio. I now have more content to pass the time than I have time to listen or watch. And speaking of watching when I started to run the road if you missed an episode of your favorite program well thems the breaks kid. But now with Hulu and Netflix all of my programs are right there whenever I want to watch them.

And here is one better for you. I can video chat with the wife and kids whenever I want to. Gone are the days when only the sound of a voice was all you had.

I play words with friends all the time with people scattered all over the country. And of course there's facebook and twitter for that immediate connection.

Here's something crazy. When I was in the Navy you only had the written word to keep you connected to family and friends. Today I understand they have email and a internet connection to keep them connected while they are at sea. How crazy is that??

I'm still holding out for the flying cars. Speaking of cars. Used to be I kept a truckers atlas beside me at all times to get from one place to the other. Now I have a GPS that fits in my pocket for all of my navigation needs. And if for some reason that either fails or I don't have access to it there is always Google Maps to keep me on the straight and narrow.

Yesterday I picked up another pair of Bluetooth headphones. Several of my peers have this brand made by LG. It doubles as a music headset as well as a telephonic headset. Battery lasts for 15 hours and I wear both  earbuds so I get that stereo affect when I'm on the phone and the best part is no matter how nosy it is the background stuff is filtered out. Love it.

Now when I write the great American Road Warrior manual I'm going to include a chapter on both content for long drives but also for air travel. I'm also going to include information on the best headsets to carry and Apps for the road. It's a must if your going to run the road a lot.

I'm also going to include a chapter on luggage. Now tell me how it is that FedEx can ship my tools and luggage all over the world and never breaks a handle or a wheel. But if I give it to the airlines guaranteed if I have to check it more than 3 times I'm going to get a bag back that is voided of zippers, wheels and handles.

Give you an example. When I started traveling I was buying luggage on an average of twice a year. Now it never mattered how expensive it was or who made. In fact I came up with the bright idea of trading in my softsided luggage for a clam shell hard shell. Daring the airlines to break this one. First trip out I get it back with a golf ball size hole in the middle of it and both wheels missing.

When I went to ticket counter and complained I got the "sir  its normal wear and tear and we don't cover any of those defects"

SO I moved up to a 1650 pelican case. It made it about a year before I got it back with a defect. The defect was the handle on the side. Now if your not familiar with pelican you should be. Although its not sexy (pretty much comes in black) the special ops guys use it as does NASA and major outfits that need luggage that is very sturdy. Its waterproof, fire proof and the handles and wheels are attached with 2in thick reinforced hardened plastic like rubber. It is the bag you should always use for air travel.

BUT I got MINE back from Delta with the handle cleaved completely off. It looked like someone had taken a laser to it and the right wheel had been literally carved out.

Now I ask you what the Fuck are they doing to destroy this piece of luggage? And when I showed my now destroyed bag to the airline all I got was a shrug and a "sir its normal wear and tear". And That was delivered with a straight face.

Name me another industry that gets away with this kind of nonsense??

You just want to go across the counter and beat the shit out of someone. Or at the very least smack that complete indifferent look off their face.

I'm starting a 12 day stint out here in wonderful AR. The best thing to say is its getting warmer. Plus I have had great mexican food everyday.

And since we are now minus one dog the hunt for another one is in full swing. We like the Boxer breed and are looking for a pup to replace the one who had to be put down over the weekend. I miss him I do and when I was at home this weekend I found myself looking for him. Its sad but like they say at least he's not suffering anymore.

Speaking of chapters to be written in my great American Road novel I'm also going to include a chapter on rental cars. It is my opinion the heated seat is the single greatest invention ever!! I live that heated seat a lot. to the point I really don't need the heater on. The drawback is it makes you a wee bit sleepy at times.

Not a lot to ponder today but tomorrow I'm going to write about guns, sequester and the media plus a spattering of our defunct political system. 

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