my Quad Lock phone accessories

What’s cooler than a man wearing a HIP pack with a phone belt clip?

A man wearing a fanny pack with two phone clips!   😀

My trusty Otterbox case has served me well. And saved me many, many times. I’ve never broken a phone. The belt clip is … OK.

When I got a second phone I tried, instead, the Quad Lock belt clip.  It’s better than Otterbox, overall.  Quad Lock was rated #1 on Wirecutter.

There’s a cheaper alternative called Nite Ize Wraptor.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

I only tried that belt clip because I was looking for a way to mount my new phone on the handlebars of my touring bike.  The belt clip is compatible.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Details.

Ortlieb Back-Roller Classic Rear Panniers

In South America I saw many Europeans bikepacking with these waterproof saddle bags.

I recently bought a set for myself.

Famed for their durability, the warranty is 5 years.

On the other hand, one of the accessory shoulder straps ripped off the first time I picked up the bag loaded.

Most people don’t use the shoulder straps, anway. I won’t. Instead I’ll use the very sturdy built-in handle

They are expensive. I paid CDN $240 for a set of two.

Click PLAY or watch a review on YouTube.

Our NEW gas stove / convection oven

My brother installed the same new stove in his house and my parents house.

  • GE’s Profile series
  • stainless steel knobs
  • 5 different sized burners
  • large LED display
  • extra-large integrated reversible cast iron grill and griddle

Profile 5.6 cu. ft. Smart Slide-In Gas Range with Self-Cleaning Convection in Stainless Steel

We like it so far. It simmers at every possible temperature.

We locked the electronic screen so you can’t accidentally start or stop something.

The app — SmartHQ — is hilariously poorly done. 😀  Don’t bother.

Not many people would use an oven app, even if it worked.

Click PLAY or watch a review on YouTube.

My Spring Allergies – MEDICATIONS?

In 2020 I tried Diphenhydramine HCI 25 Mg – Kirkland Brand.

They did seem to work. It helped my Dad, as well.

My brother bought Kirkland in the States, inexpensively.  Over the counter. Pink tablets.

Some people do experience side effects.

As I couldn’t find it quickly in Canada, I ordered something that looks identical from Amazon.ca.

More expensive.

Basic Care Diphedryl Tablets,

400 Count

 

I acquired allergies later in life.  In Calgary they start about May 15th, end about July 1st.

In B.C. with a much milder climate, everything is about 2 months earlier. In 2020 I was suddenly mostly better about May 1st.  And stopped taking the pills.

Before this year I mainly treated Spring Allergies by fleeing somewhere else in the world. OR … a combination of exercise and frequent showers.

Inexpensive home delivered meals

We joined a service called Better Meals out of Vancouver, Canada.

They offer free delivery with $30.00 minimum order to my parent’s house from an extensive menu. Cost is only CAD $7.50 / meal. Unbelievably inexpensive for what you get.

Main course with two side dishes. Soup. And dessert. 

sample $7.50 meal

Everything arrives frozen in recyclable containers. You can heat in the over or microwave.

You’d need trial and error to find the dishes you like best. 

For example, my Mom liked the Turkey dinner but did not like one of the chicken dinners.

For those not going out much, Better Meals saves shopping. Cooking. And cleaning. 

You could store some of the meals in the freezer, only pulling something out when it turns out you don’t have time to cook for yourself.

I’d recommend Better Meals. It’s available to anyone.  They deliver only certain days of the week depending on where you live in B.C.

Note that the food comes without seasonings. You’d add those to taste.

BetterMeals.ca 

related – In our town you can also get hot meals for CAD $7.50 from Meals on Wheels. But you have very little choice in menu.

 

My favourite podcasts 2020

During COVID-19 many of us have more time to listen to audio. Here are some of my favourites.

Search for them by name on your preferred podcasting platform, if interested.

Online audiocasts are as old as the internet.

But we have the silly, unintuitive name podcast because Steve Jobs called the Apple device an iPod.

BBC journalist Ben Hammersley first suggested the name “Podcast” (a portmanteau, a combination of “iPod” and “broadcast“) it in early February 2004.

I try to call the audio only version “audiocasts“. Leo Laporte still uses the term “netcast” for both audio only and video podcasts.

Dave Winer is most often credited as the inventor as he decided to include new audio functionality in RSS 0.92.  Dave demonstrated it worked on January 11, 2001 by enclosing a Grateful Dead song in his Scripting News weblog.

 

Charity: Water

The story of Scott Harrison building Charity: Water to a half billion dollar non-profit is inspiring.

charitywater.org has funded 51,438 water projects for over 11 million people around the world as I post.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

My personal wish list for the world:

Short term – clean drinking water

Long term – education of girls and women 

 

Amazon

MUST LISTEN – The Adventure Podcast

Every week I listen to Dave Adlard and Kraig Becker discussing adventures around the world.

Always entertaining.  And informative.

They’ve just posted their official 100th episode:

Our Favorite Podcast Moments

Through 100 Shows

 

____ Here’s my review of the very start from Dec 24, 2017. 

For years Kraig has been my main source of news on outdoor adventure on his site called The Adventure Blog.

He and Dave are co-hosting an extension of that site with a weekly online radio show.

Both are gear nuts. From episode 1 they’ve already convinced me I NEED two products:

The new Omni smart helmet. Indegogo.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

And a Dji spark drone.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Check out the podcast here.

Recapturing energy from gravity fed waterlines

Great idea.

Portland has replaced a section of its existing water supply network with Lucid Energy pipes containing four forty-two inch turbines. As water flows through the pipes, the turbines spin and power attached generators, which then feed energy back into the city’s electrical grid. …

Good magazine

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Building a better Wind Turbine

Here’s a design that won an award from NASA Tech Briefs.

Engineer and inventor Glen Lux has built dozens of vertical axis wind turbines trying to find ways to improve on traditional horizontal axis products.

Click PLAY or watch one on YouTube.

Thanks Warren.