Austin's Very Own #32 – The 'burbs dilemma & waiting in the hospital

MetroRail Open House - Crestview Station

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In this episode, Kim and I talk about figuring out our housing situation: the nice, city neighborhood vs. the luxurious suburbs. We also go over Kim’s time in Houston where she spent lots of time waiting around in hospitals which causes is to wonder out-loud if there’s some kind of doctor shortage.

Austin's Very Own #30 – A Weekend with Amber

Amber in front of Storyville

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After a weekend in Austin, we talk with our niece Amber about such hot topics as “Mall Cop” and her Nintendo DS.

Also, don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast feed in iTunes (or whatever you like) to have all of the Austin’s Very Own episodes automatically downloaded for your viewing and listening pleasure! Click right here and select the way you want to subscribe.

Austin's Very Own #29 – Burgers and RVs

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Before recording the first Burger Beat, I talk about the idea and process. We then talk about traveling around in Canada in Zane’s RV, and then other trivial stuff I’d done that evening. At some point, we have a crazy parking situation as I try to avoid being labeled a “jack ass.” We also talk about Hyde Park as a nice place to eat and then I give a review of William Gibson’s Pattern Recognition.

(P.S.: we make reference to the previous episode, where we talk about not using shampoo. We’ll find that in the archives sometime and publish it. It’s our first “lost episode”! Yay! Get ready, future!)

Episode 148 – "Have you tried it hot?"


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  • Netflix On-Demand, or more “traditional” video On-Demand delivered to XBox.
  • “Have you tried it hot?”
  • Art by polls – painting and music.
  • Charles gets his hard-drive “fixed.”
  • Going back to paper and pen for notes – maybe Netbooks can save us.
  • What’s up with these clogged toilets?

Episode 147 – Using Technology for Evil

Recording #147

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Among other things in this episode, we revisit my obsession with Evernote (see also my public notebook), talk about the Griffin Clarifi (highly recommended!), and discuss all the ways you can use Also, we talk about Charles’ talk on JavaScript at the Detroit Java User’s Group.


Episode 146 – All these goats are retarded

Maker's Mark Barrel

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This week, Charles and I catch up with this second episode. Our lateness is your benefit, dear listeners.

To that end, here’s a select list of some of the things we discuss:

  • Charles was deadly ill.
  • The half-hipster carabiner key-chain arrangement.
  • The Pomegranate phone.
  • Valentine’s Day Gifts – the ladies have it tough here (mine were awesome!).
  • Country Clubs seem like they’d be nice, if expensive.
  • Charles on designer/developer workflow – applying changes ain’t that hard if the developer defines the deliverables.
  • Sprites in HTML.
  • Maybe the designer/developer workflow will never be de-coupled, really.
  • Charles’ upcoming talk at the Detroit Java User’s Group: it’ll be February 18, 2009 6:30PM to 8:30PM at ePrize headquarters in Pleasant Ridge.


The Shoe Dilemma


What kind of shoes should you wear when you’re traveling? Most frequent travels like slip-on shoes, sandals, or something else that’s easy to put on and take off. I’ve begun to question that theory, though I still operate under it.

The Defining Moment of Frequent Travel

There’s one, small moment in every trip that defines what you can take with you: the security gate. As mentioned in reference to the 3 oz liquid limit here, there’s something absurd about the whole security gate deal at the airport. Of course, one never really knows how well something is working; it’s much easier to know how well it’s breaking. But, let’s set aside the usual TSA griping for people who do it better. As ever, our job here is to simply help make frequent travel easier, not boil the oceans.

Ever since that guy tried to blow up a plane with his shoe, in the States we’ve had to remove our shoes when going through the security gate. You have to X-ray them, you see.

Slipping Off

Now, your goal at the security gate is to get through as fast as possible. Not only because you don’t want to spend time there, but because the longer you take the longer everyone else behind you has to wait. Being courteous is the rule for me when it comes to travel: most everyone else is either clueless or being a dick at airports, which aren’t two roles I relish playing.

To speed up your security gating then, you’ll probably want shoes without laces. “Slip-on shoes.” This way, you can quickly take them off and quickly put them on. Also, this minimizes the amount of time you have to walk around in socks, which is sort of the ultimate symbol of what we’ve let ourselves become at the airport, not to mention “dirty” for people who worry about that kind of thing.

I’ve had two pairs of these slip-on shoes: a casual-fancy pair of Doc Martin’s and a dark brown pair of Steve Madden shoes. It’s easy to find good looking slip on shoes that you can wear through the rest of your trip. They’re actually good for at-home use too: they’re so quick to put on and take off! (Who has time for laces?!)

Shoeless Luxury

Additionally, there are some who enjoy taking their shoes off on the plane. Indeed, if you sit in business class on American Airlines (and above, I guess), they give you a little bag to put your shoes in and a pair of socks to wear.

Personally, I’m a little wary of people taking off their shoes. I’m at the top of that list. I can see how it’d be great, but one often can’t smell their own stink, so how am I to do if my unsheathed feet are stinking up the aisle? Nonetheless, taking off your shoes on the plane is a sort of easy luxury for many, and I don’t hold it against them.

Can you Run in Slip-ons?

Of course, if you’re going to be going to the gym while you’re travel (a recent practice of mine that I highly recommend), you’ll need another pair of shoes, some sneakers. Packing sneakers in a carry-on bag is a bit tough, though certainly possible. And you might also be tempted to wear your lace-up sneakers while traveling and put the slimmer, slip-on shoes in your bag.

Of course, it’s easy enough to setup your lace-on shoe to be a slip-on one: you just keep the laces loose enough. This works well with Converse and skate-shoes, maybe not so much “real” tennis shoes.

My fashion consultant wears a uniform and latex gloves!

All of these considerations aside, I’ve been thinking of late: I don’t want to drive my shoe choice by the dictates of the security line. In reality, most shoes I wear, even with laces, I tend to fix up so I can slip them on and off rather than lace them up each time. But there’s other options, like boots. Boots are not easy to just slip on and slip off, you sort of have to be sitting to remove and put them back on.

At the moment, I’m perfectly happy with my slip-on shoes – like I said above, I wear them all the time, traveling or no. But next time I look around for shoes, I don’t think I’ll let travel considerations enter my mind. It’s too weird – maybe too disempowering in a rich-and-privlegaged way – to think that any of my decisions is driven by such a small moment in time as the security gate.