RANKING CHORES FROM WORST TO ACCEPTABLE

Is there anyone who looks forward to chores? Or is everyone like me and sees it as just a to-do list item to check off on a somewhat frequent basis? On the bright side, some of them are not as painful as others.

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KARAOKE IS GOOD FOR THE SOUL

There’s nothing more therapeutic than finding a song that matches your current mood and singing the lyrics. Even if you aren’t a professional singer – that’s what makes it more fun.

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STRESS IS OVERRATED

They say stress can kill you. So just don’t be stressed. Yeet that kind of mental energy right back to where it belongs. With the cats.

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THE 5 STAGES OF EXPERIENCING BROKEN TECHNOLOGY

Nobody likes broken technology. I mean, I guess there are some people out there who get a weird sense of satisfaction from fixing broken technology, but are they really excited that it’s broken or that they were able to fix a problem? Are there actual human beings living in 2021 that pick up their phone and hope it doesn’t work? I have to believe the answer is no. Unless you were trying to get off the grid for a while. Broken broken feels like a strong wish, though, when you could just turn it off or leave it at home.

For the more sane among us, broken technology is never a fun time. Technology, for starters, is expensive. Like sell your first child expensive and every year those prices climb a little more. It’s the most exhausting hill climb I’ve ever done. Remember when you could get a phone for like, well I don’t actually remember anything pre several hundred dollars, but at some point it was affordable. Same with gas, and clothes, and houses, and cars, and toothbrushes, and watches, and all of the things. 

So you’ve spent your entire paycheck on something the size of your palm. It’s fun! It’s new! It’s the envy of your friends, co-workers, sidewalk strangers – everyone! Until it’s not. There’s always the one day where you go to power on a device and get the infinite loading screen of death. A stalled progress bar. A spinner stuck in time. A loading bar that never starts loading. A percentage that would fail every test, regardless of the curve. You know what I’m talking about.

Few things bring greater frustration than broken technology. Why is that? My guess: we need working technology to find a solution for our current problem. But if the solution magician is also asleep at the wheel, how are we ever supposed to move forward? Stuck in a black hole of questions and no answers. A lot like English exams. What answer are you looking for?! An opinion is not an accurate way to assess my knowledge of a book! Everyone is different and my current opinion is best left in my head.

Anyways … despite my raging passion against standardized English testing, technology is the same puzzle. And so we travel down the path and start walking through the 5 stages of grief with our currently most hated possession. Starting, of course, with grief. Grief for not being able to get it working. For never knowing if you’ll see the login screen ever again. A genuine sadness that it doesn’t work all the time. Like the price tag indicated.

We quickly move on into the angst portion of our journey thinking about all the potentially lost data if our technology does not magically come back online. When was the last time you ran a backup? Do you even know people’s phone numbers? How are you supposed to contact someone to send help? Will we ever see those unopened messages again? Once we’ve accepted our sadness, fears, and anxieties around our current situation we move to confusion.

Confusion around how to even begin fixing this. Who knows how to fix these things? Do you have to physically go to a store? Wait in line and hope you can explain the problem enough for someone to fix it. General confusion on how it works to begin with. Literally think about that for just a second. How do these things do all of the things they do? I have no idea. But that is a short rest area on our way to anger. Why? Simply why must things be like this?

You want answers. I want answers. Everybody wants answers, but the place with the answers is currently closed. So where does that leave us? About to throw something at a wall probably. And you can see how we easily get to tears. Throwing is never the ideal solution. Brute force, after all, usually makes it much worse. But at the end of the day, hole in the wall or not, we are frustrated to the point of literal, or metaphorical, tears. 

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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RANKING THE iPHONE COLOR OPTIONS

Every year in September we wait patiently for Apple to unveil their latest technology. Or, I guess, more accurately, their new marketing spin on what remains mostly the same from year to year. Rarely is it something so dramatic it requires an entirely new version number and higher starting price, yet here we are. Trained like Pavlovian dogs to anticipate the most attention apples everywhere will get all year, then to open up our current phones, cry because we’re now out of date and no longer cool, and pre-order what’s to come.

Kind of feels like the circle of (modern day) life. Buy the latest technology. Be in the know. Low key flex on all your friends, co-workers, acquaintances, and strangers that you encounter out and about. Operate with the latest, bug-free systems … well, ok, nothing is perfect and usually the newest releases have the most issues. So basically you spend all of the money to get the latest flashy piece of equipment that doesn’t work as intended. Seems like a solid investment.

I’m not here to rant about new phone releases, however. All the companies do it, not just Apple. I mean, shoot, even Samsung is branching into the rainbow for their latest Galaxy versions and bringing back the flip phone. And why would they not? Everyone loves the colorful Apple options! Or do they? I, for one, don’t particularly care for the iPod feel of the colors. This, after all, is the next level up. The iPhone. They kind of look like toys. But no toy I had growing up came with a four digit price tag. I want my phone to be sleek. I want it to feel expensive – because it is expensive. And the color options scream standard edition model.

So, without further ado, let’s rank the available iPhone color options! According to me. The Restless Professional. You may feel differently and I guess that’s fine. You do you. I’m doing me. As a quick helpful background, there are currently 13 color options depending on how far back you go on the available, still updating and actively maintaining, iPhone options on Apple’s official marketing website. For fun, we will rank all 13 in order of most desirable to why:

  1. Graphite
  2. Black
  3. Pacific Blue
  4. Blue (iPhone 12 Edition)
  5. Purple
  6. Silver
  7. White
  8. PRODUCT(RED)
  9. Coral
  10. Green
  11. Blue (iPhone XR Edition)
  12. Yellow
  13. Gold

As established earlier, not a huge fan of the colors so it should come as no surprise that those fall into the middle of the rankings here. Despite the color versions traditionally being kind of obnoxious, Apple has actually made the blues a nice toned down navy starting with the 12 and I find it acceptable. White, silver, and purple are all interesting. I don’t particularly dislike any of them, but as a general rule I like to get things that won’t get dirty as easily and I feel like these lighter colors have a higher chance of getting stained. Which is not a good look. So the darker ones are my top preference. Down at the very bottom of the list is yellow. That’s a happy color. It’s not a phone color. I don’t want to look like I’m calling you from a sunflower. And that just leaves gold. Why is this an option? It’s not real gold. It doesn’t even look like real gold. It’s dull. It’s like a weird mix between the white and the yellow and I’m 100% not here for it. Besides, only rich people opt to buy the newest phone model and not get a case to cover it with.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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THE COLLEGE FOOTBALL ANTICIPATION

Someone, somewhere, has been counting down since mid January to the start of a new college football season. Many people probably. At any given point in a calendar year you can do a quick Internet search to see exactly how many days are left until American football returns. Much the same way you can also easily find out how many days are left until a particular holiday season … or any random date for that matter. Whatever your heart desires, there is something online that will give you a countdown for it. 

While I enjoy the college football season more than the average person, I find it ironic that the same people who shamelessly countdown to kickoff day are the same ones who generally like to judge others for knowing, say, the exact number of days left until Christmas. If you can keep a daily countdown for football, I can keep a daily countdown until my favorite holiday. That would be 114 days for all you fellow merry reindeer. But today is the start of one of college sports most exciting weekends. Labor Day.

You love March Madness, I love March Madness, we all love March Madness. No denying that. Not as exciting for the College Football Playoff because, let’s be honest, only having four teams compete is garbage. Mostly because the polls are political and I have yet to see a playoff where the four chosen teams were truly the four who should have been in there. I clearly would like a word with the committee, as would a lot of Texas A&M and Oklahoma fans, I’m sure. You’re telling me a team, nay, TWO teams with two losses on losing streaks make it over another TWO teams with only one loss and on 8 game win streaks?! From stronger conferences?! Collusion.

My favorite part of the anticipation is the calm before the storm. That is this week. All of the experts have spent literally months predicting different scenarios and arguing for their alma maters. Sometimes they just talk – actually most of it is them just blowing smoke. After all of that settles, though, the only thing left to do is wait for tonight. There is nothing else to be said. We’ve waited 7.5 months and it’s finally here. And can we talk about how great it is to have the Thursday night kickoff now? Why wait until Saturday when you can start your long weekend with some football? Because no work gets done the Friday before an official long weekend anyways.

Sure, some of the D1 teams from smaller conferences kicked off this past weekend, but, does that count? Until we get a top 25 ranked team in the lineup, it might as well be pre-season. If you weren’t busy, you probably tuned in for a bit. If you were busy, don’t worry. You’ve got the big boys coming in soon with another deadly lineup of top team matchups every week to get any sports fan pumped up. Despite their shortcomings in the playoff debacle, the college football scheduling committee knows how to keep fans entertained for over four months. 

Clearly I’m not passionate about the season starting at all. Football is one of the many reasons that fall is the best season of the year. Tailgates being a close second, but what’s a tailgate without a game to attend? Saturdays, and Sundays if you roll with the pros as well, are booked from now through the end of the year. When someone asks if you can hangout, they better put in a Calendly invite for a workday because I’m going to be busy watching a bunch of unfortunate guys get absolutely raked.

There is no better entertainment in sports than seeing a good, hard, tackle. Or a hail mary play. Or a ridiculous, should have never happened, but it did, kickoff return for a touchdown. Or a last minute impossible pick six for the win. Or your team putting an absolute beatdown on a rival. Or your team, hopefully, hoisting the trophy come January. So many ups. So many potential downs, as well, but the season hasn’t started yet. So there is nothing but hope. T minus 10.5 hours to kickoff.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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RECEIPTS, RECEIPTS EVERYWHERE

Aren’t we in the middle of an environmental awareness movement as, you know, a planet? Which is probably a good thing, if we’re honest with ourselves. Don’t want to proactively kill our great-great-great-great? grandchildren because they run out of oxygen or something fun like that. Some projections have the end of the environment as we know it in hundreds of years and others are saying we could be feeling the effects. I think it’s safe to assume it’s somewhere in the middle of those two estimates. So … in like a hundred-ish years? If I’m still alive in a hundred-ish years I have to assume that the technology keeping me alive is doing the same for Mother Nature.

There’s all kinds of initiatives going on. Electric cars, recycling (kind of), composting, gardening, sustainable farming, reusable grocery bags, and paperless options for mail. Among others. I would like to take a second and wonder quietly where we went wrong with recycling. Like most great ideas it has fallen quite short of what was promised. So many rules to follow, for one. Then certain areas of the country don’t collect recycling? Or they have specifications – for example, recycling must be in a blue trash bag. If it’s in a trash bag, though, can it even be recycled? If it was as easy as the garbage I think more people would participate. Another thought, don’t make me pay a monthly recycling bill, but make me take it myself to a special center anyways. Just saying.

Despite all the various options out there for people who want to be involved, the paperless options are the most exciting to me. I really don’t like getting mail. I have to go all the way to the mailbox. Get the mail. Walk back. Sort out all of the ridiculous pieces of junk mail. Open the relevant mail. Then throw away said mail after I’ve read it. Because what would I need to save it for? I can find the same information on the Internet. Thank goodness the email copy is a read and delete alternative! Doesn’t solve the junk issue, however. I guess I can’t have my cake and eat it too when it comes to paperless. 

While email versions of monthly statements, or bills, definitely come in handy, I would like people in the consumer world to answer why there are so many receipts when you buy something. One receipt is kind of acceptable so you can “keep it for your records” and “balance your checkbook”. It’s courteous, I suppose. What I’ve found recently, though, is that one is never enough. Two is not enough. Sometimes three is not enough. I mean, just what? Who needs all these copies? Where are they going? Not with me, that’s for sure!

Typically, I hold onto a receipt until I see a trash can. If I’m shopping, I never keep my receipt, and yet I get presented with my copy, and the store’s copy. If I’m at a restaurant, I never keep my receipt, and yet I get presented with my copy, the restaurant’s copy, and a third unknown copy with the same information as the other two. Sans a signature line. Occasionally, I have received four receipts and I’m not here for that. Four?! More places should give the no receipt option.

In today’s world, we have tablets, we have the Square register, we have credit card readers for smartphones, we have Venmo. What is the consumer world waiting for? All the trees to disappear? Ironically, small businesses are the ones who seem to have jumped on this train well before corporate America. Irony is the wrong word there. Appropriately, small businesses have started this trend. Much like the federal government, I don’t think corporate America could make a decision about speeding up or slowing down for a yellow light for at least a month. It’s possible that years ago the leadership teams started trying to adopt paperless and we have yet to see the fruit of that direction. Maybe in another 10 years, who knows.

My point is that I get too many receipts. And I would like it to stop. I throw them away. Quickly. And without regret because what am I going to do with it? I can see that “receipt” online any time of day because that’s how technology works. A digital checkbook where it balances, records, and reconciles everything for you. Why would I do it manually? Save the trees. Save my sanity. Just print the one receipt you need to calculate tips.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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CAN I SEE YOUR ID?

There are several key birthday milestones that you count down to growing up. Your 10th birthday, for sure. I mean, double digits! You remember getting so excited to be double digits without really realizing that there’s a good chance you will never leave the double digit range … think about that for a second. What was so great about 10 anyways? That’s a whole extra candle your parents had to buy for the cake. 10 is selfish is what it is.

Plus then you’re on the verge of the pre-teen years which are fun for absolutely nobody. Not your parents. Not your friends. Not you. Not your teachers. Nobody. It’s a phase that is frustrating, stressful, and confusing. And that’s all before you hit the joy of puberty. Which is also frustrating, stressful, and confusing. But also scary and sad and exciting and you realize you’re nearing the next milestone which is the sweet sixteen. Ironically, the only sweet thing about being 16 is the ability to drive. Which is expensive so once again who’s really winning here?

Then there’s 18 and you’re finally an adult! Again, though, not as exciting as we hype ourselves up for. You can buy cigarettes so I guess it’s a good way to learn about consequences. Although you only partially get treated like an adult. You get to go to college, which IS an awesome milestone. Even there though, it’s not quite the same as the monotonous, expensive, and exhausting world that is post-college.

Among the birthday milestones that we trick ourselves into getting pumped about, the 21st one is the best day of your life. No more worrying about getting caught with a fake, or having to bribe your older friends into getting you some bottles, or swiping extra liquor from the very back of your parent’s cabinet hoping they don’t use those. You can waltz into the grocery store. The liquor store. The gas station. The club. The bar. Wherever and slap that ID card down and get whatever your little heart desires.

While being an alcohol drinking adult has its perks, like most good things, there are downfalls. That downfall is being asked to show your ID. Don’t get me wrong, that first day you reach purchasing freedom, you want to brag about it! You want everywhere you go to ask for that card so you can whip it out. Then wait awkwardly for them to have to triple check the date to make sure it’s the very minimum legal age. A powerful feeling.

During the post-turning-21-hangover, having to pull your ID out of your wallet every time becomes … annoying. Especially as you start to age towards your mid and late 20s. How young do you have to look to be closer to 30 than 21 and be asked to prove yourself. There’s always the one friend who will get carded, even when nobody else in the entire group does. I am that friend. I could go out with my parents, and only I will get carded. Not even my younger, not even 21 year old, sister gets carded. She just gets drinks. But I’m the one who looks underage. Ok.

If everyone in the group gets asked to prove their age, that’s one thing. The server is just protecting their job. And probably the whole establishment. But to single one person out, what is the purpose of even asking? Why waste both of our time? What was the thinking going into this? If one of them is at least 21, all of them must be 21? How does that work? Some of my friends have even decided to take No Shave November all the way through the pandemic and look like they belong in a frat house. And still I’m the only one who gets carded.

Clearly I’m unbothered by my young face. If I still look like a high schooler maybe I’ll look like a 20-something in my late 40s so there are perks. Eventually. So they tell me. Once you hit 21 you get a few consecutive solid exciting birthdays, though. Taylor Swift year, Jordan year, Kobe year, rent a car year. And then you’re in your late 20s and it becomes less exciting from there. You have to wait for 30 and by that point the over the hill jokes are coming out. So you’re excited on the outside, but sad on the inside.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who would enjoy this post and want to share it with them, that would be awesome. Sharing is caring, after all. Don’t forget to subscribe to get these in your inbox twice weekly and follow TRP on Twitter for frequent musings. Thanks for reading!


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