Thursday, June 23, 2016

Ebook obsession

I read a lot of books; I'm sure that's no surprise to anyone. I read over one hundred books a year, sometimes more. This year I'm on track to read about two hundred. I don't buy physical books anymore. I really love ebooks. I remember when I had a Palm Pilot, I was thrilled to discover that you could read books on it.

Then along came the Kindle. I had one of the first ones that I eventually sold to my sister once I got an iPhone. Then I got another, better (and cheaper) Kindle, and then a Kindle Fire, and of course an iPad. Now, with the iPhone 6S, I read almost exclusively on my phone now. It's always with me. I don't have to worry if I have a book in my bag for downtime, I always have several hundred in my phone.

I read while waiting in doctors' offices, I read in line at the car wash, I read while eating in restaurants if I'm eating alone. I have felt guilty at times for buying so many ebooks, and I've gotten more picky about them lately. I subscribe to several free and discount ebook lists, and I download a lot of free and 99 cent books.

For the new release bestsellers, I usually put my name on the waiting list at the library, but I would really rather buy them. But I can wait rather than pay $15 for the ebook.

All this is leading up to the Apple pricefixing antitrust lawsuit settlement. The suit had to do with Apple allegedly conspiring with book publishers to charge artificially high prices. According to 9to5Mac, "Customers will receive $6.93 for every ebook that was a New York Times bestseller and $1.57 for every other ebook" sold by certain publishers.

So, I don't have any idea how many books I bought, but I got an Amazon credit of almost $350 in my account yesterday. So yeah, my ebook obsession actually paid off!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Lifting, carrying, moving

These last few weeks have been very hard. My parents have decided to move to an assisted living complex. My sister Lynn has done most of the research, and I just show up when and where she tells me. :) She made a ton of phone calls, something that she's much better at than I am. We visited three or four places, made extensive notes, took pictures, and decided that one of them was the best--the best location, the best infrastructure, the best pricing--although "best pricing" leaves a lot to be desired. They are all extremely expensive. They are all very similar, and they are all mostly in the same price range.

My father is pretty sold on it -- since my mother's stroke a few years ago he's been doing everything, and he's pretty worn out. My mom isn't sure about it, she's changed her mind a couple of times, but we've convinced her that it needs to happen. Of course, it's stressful for everyone. They don't want to move. I had hoped that they could stay in their home, and maybe have someone come in to help them, but it's gotten to the point where that isn't really feasible.

So now we're figuring out what they want to take, what they want to keep but maybe not have there with them, what they want to get rid of. The house is full of sixty years' worth of stuff, and it's a lot. It's all so familiar, and pretty sad, but we're working through it. Lynn and I have been out there just about every day, packing things and helping Mom and Dad look through things. I've been to Home Depot a couple of times to buy boxes, and on Saturday we were packing books and hauling boxes around on a two-wheeler. I would say that I haven't worked so hard in a long time.

Yesterday I told Dad that today, Father's Day, was going to be a day of rest, and I stayed home. Bob came home from a ten day fishing trip to Minnesota, so we've been catching up on our respective weeks. On Friday I had to stay home all day to wait for an AT&T Uverse technician, so I did laundry, vacuumed, and worked out in the yard for awhile. Unfortunately, he never showed up, so that was pretty annoying, but at least I did get some things accomplished at home.

On Saturday morning I got up fairly early and went to the library to use their wifi to do a little work before I got my hair cut, then headed out to Home Depot for more boxes, then to my parents' house. Sometime while I was gone, the technician showed up, apparently, because everything was working when I got home yesterday evening. They had told me Thursday night that someone had to be here when he came, but fortunately that didn't turn out to be the case.

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