It’s Back! And I’m Terrified

June 30, 2011 at 11:17 am | Posted in Me | Leave a comment
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When this image appeared in my inbox the other day, I got a little bit frightened.

The Really Big Chicken Sandwich Combo (RBCSC) — its $3.99 price tag too irresistible on a night a few months ago when I was eating alone and did not feel like cooking — was the fast food meal that made me realize I wasn’t a kid anymore, and thus couldn’t eat in the same way without paying an immediate physical price. In this case, the price was chest pains and difficulty breathing within twenty minutes of finishing the meal.

It’s not like I’m someone who hadn’t eaten any fast food for five years, and then decided to gorge myself on an absurdly large meal. Although I do eat real food most of the time, I occasionally jones for chicken nuggets, or curly fries, or a Dr. Pepper, and Jack in the Box is usually my destination when these cravings strike. {This is probably because (a) there is a location about 8 minutes away from my apartment, and (b) it was the fast food indulgence of my youth, so there’s a nostalgia factor there, too.} So while my fast food consumption is not a common occurrence, it’s not exactly rare, either, though I usually try to limit myself to one of the three combo items (sandwich OR fries OR soda) at a time so my stomach doesn’t feel like I consumed a rock afterwards.

But on the fatal RBCSC day, I threw caution (and good sense, and experience) to the wind, and ate fries AND a soda AND two chicken patties at the same time. And I paid for it dearly, by feeling as though I were about to have a heart attack.

So let my experience be a cautionary tale: Do not allow yourself to be fooled by the siren song of a $3.99 price tag. Approach the RBSCS with caution!

[ screenshot from Jack in the Box email ]

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Best Recent Amazon Purchase: Wrist Rest

March 7, 2011 at 10:32 pm | Posted in Internet Sleuthiness, Me | 1 Comment
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I don’t know how I made it through four years of undergrad and one year of working as a research assistant without succumbing to wrist pain caused by too much computer time, but somehow graduate school was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Less than a month into my second semester, and I was already suffering from painful wrists, particularly on my left side. I jerry-rigged a set up that involved two books laid flush with the bottom edge of my laptop to create a flatter surface for my wrists to rest upon, thereby minimizing the sharp edge that dug into my wrist. It was obvious, though, that I needed a more long-term solution, so I turned to Amazon, natch, and came up with an amazing product: the Intellegels Soft Foam Laptop Computer Wrist Rest. It creates a nice soft padded support for both wrists, and makes typing on the computer so much more comfortable. Plus, it came with a nice little carrying case, so I can stick it in my laptop case and take it to campus with me when I need to use my laptop at school. This little wrist rest has made me a happy customer!

However, there are two major caveats to singing this product’s praises: (1) If you click on that link above you’ll notice that it is currently out of stock on Amazon, and a quick visit to their website shows that Amazon is their only online retailer; otherwise, you’ll have to buy it at a store called Airport Wireless located “in Airports,” the site not-so-helpfully offers. I have no idea why Intelligels is not selling their products online at the moment; perhaps they just ran out of stock? Maybe I bought their last wrist rest? (It is their only product, after all.) Their website offers no explanation, so hopefully this is merely a temporary restocking kind of situation and not a Chapter 11 kind of situation.

And finally, (2), which is perhaps the more serious issue: it’s not actually made to work with a Mac. After many Amazon reviewers complained that their “one-size-fits-all” claim was misleading, since Macbooks have larger touch pads than many other laptop brands (such as Sony, Dell, and Toshiba) and so the rectangular cut-out in the wrist rest actually blocks about one-sixth of the touch pad, Intelligels altered the product description to remind readers that “fits” doesn’t necessarily mean “fits perfectly.” Hm. Questionable marketing at best, folks. Some Mac reviewers suggested cutting the wrist rest in half, thus allowing the two pieces to slide apart and leaving the touch pad (and mouse buttons) entirely free, but so far I’ve just lived with it. It’s a minor inconvenience at times, and has lead to a few instances of errant clicking, but I’m so happy with the support the pads provide that I wouldn’t dream of sending it back.

This is probably obvious, because all of like 3 people read these posts, but I am not being paid or compensated in any way by Intelligels for this post. I just thought I’d alert folks to the greatness that is a laptop wrist rest!

[ image from Amazon ]

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