NETFLIX IS BAE, HULU IS THE MISTRESS, AND AMAZON PRIME IS THE ONE NIGHT STAND

There’s no better time than right now to go on a binge. A television binge, that is. Because what else are you doing? Working? Please. Working out? Let’s stop lying. Eating? Maybe, but eating is to bingeing as peanut butter is to jelly. The perfect complement. So there’s no good excuse not to find the remote, turn on the big black box, and be transported into a magical new world of your choosing. In other words, streaming services are the real life version of Narnia. Mythical creatures included if that’s your cup of tea. Villains a plenty if you prefer to live a stressful and dramatic adventure. And characters who make questionable decisions regardless of what selection you make.

Where were we? My mind can’t move past the image of Mr. Tumnus and his curious mashup of human and goat. Real quick, why a goat? Why not stick with the classic centaur? If I had the choice between the speed, grace, and majesty of a horse or the stubby, awkward, bleating of a goat then my choice is very clear. Not that I have anything against goats! Goat yoga is my jam and baby goats falling over are the cutest GIFs on the planet. But … I want to run. I want my leg muscles to absolutely shimmer when I move. I want my mane to flow behind me like an ancient goddess. I want to be the horse, if that was unclear.

Now that we all know where I stand on the clearly controversial horse or goat topic, we can return to the main programming. Streaming service options. Not all streaming services are the same. Mainly since not all of them have the same selection of offerings, for one. There’s also the obvious price differences, ads versus no ads, color scheme, app performance, etc. Those are boring though and any Google search will result in hundreds of comparison articles. This is not one of those articles. I’m comparing nothing. I’m very biased and am choosing one over the others. Because it is my favorite. And this is my blog.

In case you weren’t able to pick up on it from the title, I’m a Netflix kid through and through. I like that they were first. I like that they’re color scheme is dangerous, yet intriguing. I like that they’re basically their own TV network at this point. I like that they have no ads. I like that the stand up comedy selection is better than the Gotham Comedy Club. I like that they give me the most absurd and ridiculous categories for things. I like that their suggestions are sometimes just the top 10 things streaming because that means marketing is getting their voice heard in company meetings. But most of all, I like that every single remote for a smart TV has a Netflix specific button so that my life of bingeing can be achieved easily.

This is not to say that the other companies just suck. It’s 2021, that would be a lie. We live in the golden age of technology – the competition is doing just fine. They’re just all pretty clearly in second. Well, Hulu is in second anyways. I like cheating on Netflix from time to time because as great as Netflix is, it’s timeline for getting the hot new releases of TV series and movies is sometimes slower than waiting in line at the DMV. This is where Hulu shines! They’re speedy. They’re quick. They’ve got a fresh green color scheme that calms me. All of their categories make sense. And yet, once I finish what I was watching on Hulu I’m usually like cool. I’m done and can return home. To the land of zero commercials, ever. Regardless of my subscription level. $5 per month so I don’t have to watch ads?! Wow that’s almost a pint every month and is simply not worth it.

And then there was Amazon Prime who is … trying. If you are made of money, and would like to rent absolutely everything, then this is the service for you. If you aren’t on the ‘Included with Prime’ section, though, there is a zero percent chance that what you’ve chosen will be free. This service is really only good for the other s, shipping. 

Since there is a newcomer on the scene, I’d rank Disney Plus somewhere between Netflix and Hulu. It does come with a pretty great NSFW slang slogan so I guess there’s that. It also features pretty much everything Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic. So there’s also that. And as an adult, there are times when I want nothing more than a feel-good Disney show or movie. Sometimes. Other times I want something rated above PG-13 and that’s where I once again land back in my trusted lover’s arms.

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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PICTURES ARE WORTH MORE THAN A THOUSAND WORDS

Communicating with people can be a challenge. Let’s not lie to ourselves. Especially when it’s done in any form that isn’t face to face. Which is pretty much the only thing we do now-a-days. Send text based messages to friends, family, co-workers, clients, significant others, love interests, enemies, random people on the Internet, etc. There’s so many ways to relay a message where the recipient is left to interpret the tone and delivery all by themselves. What could possibly go wrong with that? So. Many. Things.

Before going further, I think we need to take a quick rest stop and think about the different kinds of communicators that exist. Because there are several and they are not the same. At all. In fact, the range from direct to detailed is huge and all of them leave so much room for interpretation. Here are my 6 main categories, but many people flow between several depending on their mood:

  • Straight to the Point Steve
    • This is the person who just asks for what they need. They won’t respond unless absolutely necessary. Typically comes off a bit cold and standoff-ish
  • No BS Nancy
    • This is the person who will respond, but will not show any emotion. No exclamation points, or emojis, will be found in their communication. Typically comes off as stressed, but focused
  • One Word Owen
    • This is the person who can’t keep a conversation going to save their lives. Their answers are one to two words / emojis long. Typically comes across as dull or rude
  • Makes No Sense Meredith
    • This is the person who won’t respond to what you sent. They’ll get on a tangent and neither one of you will understand what is being communicated. Typically comes across as scattered and frustrating
  • Emoji Ethan
    • This is the person who loves their emoji / GIF keyboard more than anyone should. Every word has an emoji after it. Typically comes across as immature and unprofessional
  • Way Too Detailed Wanda
    • This is the person who will respond to absolutely everything you sent and then continue to ask questions. Typically comes across as a lot

Great! A fun starting guideline to how we communicate with each other has been established. And, as you probably have experienced in your own life, the same message from all of these people will be interpreted very differently. For example, let’s say they were all giving you a lunch order:

Steve: Chicken salad sandwich on a croissant. Apple on the side. Hold the lettuce.

Nancy: For lunch, I would like a personal hawaiian pizza.

Owen: Cheesesteak

Meredith: Oh, I had the best salad from that new deli the other day. I can’t remember the owner’s name, but they were certainly lovely. We had the nicest talk about our dogs!

Ethan: Yes 🙂 lunch! Sushi 😛 

Wanda: Perfect! I’m so hungry 😛 can I please have a kale smoothie for lunch, if you don’t mind? What are your plans for dinner, btw? Maybe we could cook a chicken dish 🙂

See? Which one of those would you rather receive? Personally, I use emojis to relay my own tone and delivery. I also use them to gauge the other person’s tone and delivery. It may just be me, but Ethan and Wanda would be my preference over the other four. How else would I let them know that saying ‘I hate you’ is simply a joke unless I put the cry laughing emoji next to it? Or used a GIF of an unimpressed child’s side eye? They would actually think I hated them. Which, I have to believe, would cause some big problems. How did everyone communicate pre-emoji? What a nightmare.

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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STAY IN YOUR LANE

There’s a lot of unwritten rules in life. If you know them, you will save yourself a lot of awkward, frustrating, and / or embarrassing moments. Leave it in better condition than you found it. Look at the menu before it’s your turn to order (so you don’t hold up the line, obviously – more on restaurant ordering rules in THIS POST). Replace the toilet paper roll if you use it up. Free flowing right hand turns mean you don’t have to stop (they are not a yield sign either, KNOW THE DIFFERENCE). Greasy foods taste better after you’ve been drinking. Walk right, pass left (how is this so complicated, it’s the golden SIDEWALK RULE). Pick up after your dog. Wine is better out of the bottle (it’s also the OFFICIAL DRINK OF LOVE). Don’t show up on Christian Mingle looking for a one night stand.

I could go on, but I believe you get the point. Some things are simply courteous. Others are respectful. And yet others are downright intuitive. How do you feel when you go to wipe and the person before you decided it was beneath them to put a new roll on? Like you want to leave your present somewhere for them probably. Or when you go to frolic around in your luscious yard and find that someone let their dog have their way for you to clean up? 

Better yet, how obnoxious is it when you’re looking for something real, like a consistent ice cream date, or love, and the other person is like ‘oh, yea, I’m only interested in a short term deal’. Bruh, this is Match, what are you even doing here? That’s not how this works. While life may have a lot of rules, online dating really just has one: stay in your lane. Everyone with the tiniest bit of social knowledge can understand how the different platforms work. They all have their unique reputations. But just in case you haven’t heard about this very special app phenomenon, I am here to guide you down the yellow brick road of love. Since I like categories, and I’m the one writing this, let’s examine the different tiers that exist and where each popular platform falls among those:

  • Just a Target Waiting for Cupid
    • Wake up each day hoping to get slapped up with Cupid’s arrow
    • Match / eHarmony / Christian Mingle / EliteSingles / The League type of vibe
  • All of My Friends Are in Relationships, So Here I Am
    • Society says you need a relationship and you’ve heard it so often you think it’s true
    • Bumble / Hinge / Coffee Meets Bagel / OkCupid / Happn / Clover type of vibe
  • Here For a Good Time, Not a Long Time
    • In other words, the hookup sites
    • Tinder / Grindr / Spoonr / Feeld type of vibe

Now that we have a somewhat organized sense of what the most popular sites are centered around, it’s easier to understand why someone looking for marriage in the next 6 months is going to hit nothing but a wall of frustration using Tinder. And vice versa – a player is going to probably get blocked all the way off eHarmony. There’s so many options now with dating sites that there’s really no good reason why you aren’t able to stay in your lane and find your people. Read the room. Read the vibe. Read the situation. Make smart choices. It’ll save you time, trouble, and heartbreak.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. What are some of your unspoken ways to win at life? Feel free to drop them in the comments below, I’d love to hear them! 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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DATING APPS ARE OUT OF CONTROL

Why is love so hard? Well, it doesn’t have to be! We all have a set of standards and expectations that are used to filter out potential partners. Good familial relationships, excellent cook, no aspirations of a dad bod, compassionate, 6’2”, has a job, gives strong preferential treatment to dogs over all other pets, has friends, etc. You know what yours are. In my experience this list of requirements varies greatly between each of us. The majority of the list makes sense since they are values that are important to you. Or at least help aid your agenda of producing the next Stephen Curry. 

But if you’re honest with yourself for a split second, there is probably at least one item on there that is more of a suggestion. It would be great if they didn’t judge my afterwork habits. It would be great if they showed up at my door just to drop off a package of Chewy Chips-Ahoy cookies when I have a bad day … and then of course leave me alone with my cookies and feelings. It would be great if they drove a sports car, or at least had an interest in owning one someday. Blah, blah, blah. These aren’t so much dealbreakers as dealmakers. When you’re trying to decide between several potential candidates and it comes down to the little details. 

Thankfully, several different companies have popped up to target all of your oddly specific criteria for a partner. In my opinion, some of them make sense since they still allow for a broad enough range of options outside of the main focus. A lot of them, however, simply saw the line (the ‘you’re taking it too far’ line) and flew right by it without even blinking. For those of you not overly familiar with the online dating options, or for those that like to play it safe with the most popular options, let’s look at what all is available to you (according to Google – and GOOGLE KNOWS ALL) ranked from most sensible to ‘wut?’:

  • Christian Mingle
    • If Jesus isn’t giving you what you need romantically, at least the Internet will
  • Farmers Only
    • Plow the fields can be taken in several different directions, so at least there’s lots of good pick-up lines here
  • Elite Singles
    • For all the wealthy people who somehow have trouble finding all the gold diggers of the world
  • Uniform Dating
    • While a lot of people look sharp in a uniform, seems like a shaky thing to base a relationship on
  • 420 Singles
    • I’m sure there are more than 420 people using this platform
  • Miss Travel
    • Their business model (summarized): beautiful women seek rich men to travel the world with on “dates”
  • Gluten Free Singles
    • Finally, a platform where not eating gluten spares you from all judgement
  • The Ugly Bug Ball
    • Don’t feel pretty enough for mainstream dating apps? Welcome to the Ugly Bug Ball
  • Sea Captain Date
    • Oddly specific, but seems to be a wavy twist on the Uniform Dating platform
  • Date a Golfer
    • Most golfers I know are taken … because they golf … which is awesome … but also, just put that you play golf on your profile. This feels like we’re beating the horse to death with a club
  • Herpes Fish
    • It’s illegal to not disclose that you have Herpes to a sexual partner. Here’s the loophole
  • Mullet Passions
    • Mullets are not for me, but they are for some. For the passionate, this is for you
  • Clown Dating
    • Surely this is a thing of nightmares, I do not understand this at all
  • Vampire Passions
    • Well, vampires aren’t real so this may be some funky cosplay alternative
  • Amish Dating
    • I don’t even know where to start on this one. Amish people don’t use technology. Ergo, Amish people don’t use the Internet. Ergo, how would an Amish person get registered on this site? And how would they even know it existed. How does this even work?!

Wow, I mean, what a time to be single! As you can see, it takes a turn into weirdville quite quickly. I’m curious as to how all of these sites are able to maintain any sort of feasible user base. Outside of about the top three, or four. Seems to me like most of these things are easily handled via a good profile on a more well-rounded platform. But, then again, I don’t really know. These are just observations based on site name and their splash pages. Regardless, I had a super fun time diving down this Internet rabbit hole and will unashamedly take all of my new browsing ads to date a clown, to embrace the Herpes, and to settle down without any of the technical advancements I’ve had the pleasure of enjoying up until now.

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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YOU’RE BEING SPIED ON ANYWAY – JUST EMBRACE TECHNOLOGY

There’s an app for everything now. Want to learn a new language? There’s an app for that. Need someone to walk your dog? There’s an app for that. Looking for (incorrect) weather information (more on my thoughts about weather forecasts in THIS POST)? There’s definitely an app for that. Want a virtual shave? Yes, there’s an app for that. Wonder what it’s like to count a million dollars? You bet there’s an app for that. Have you always wanted to milk a cow? Well, you’re in luck, because there’s even an app for that!

Apps, apps, apps – Oprah would be in heaven. If you think about the apps on your phone, tablet, watch, computer, etc. right now most of them are probably a bit more productive than the cow milking one (maybe not though, I don’t know you). You probably have a navigation app, a weather app, some “work” apps to keep track of your calendar, expenses, documents, emails, and other adult nonsense, a social media app (or two, or three, or twelve … I talk about the social media cycle HERE), a “live-your-best-life” app, an app with no purpose other than to waste time, a game app, and maybe a travel app or a sports app. Sound about right? Of course it does! I’m a millennial after all – that basically makes me an app guru.

Which, for the record, being a millennial does not mean that I can troubleshoot your technological problems for you. I didn’t create or build these apps. If I did, I wouldn’t still be working my 8-8 that’s for freaking sure – I’d be living off of all the ad revenue from addicted users like yourself. So please stop asking me how to fix it. Those apps have a customer support team for a reason…ask them, it’s literally their job to help you. Someone PAYS them to help you. No one is paying me to help you.

Ironically, usually the app isn’t working correctly because you thought you could maintain some semblance of privacy in your life and decided not to let the app access your location, or your microphone, or your camera, etc. Funny thing about apps though, in my experience, they only ask to access things that are required for them to work properly. Oh, you need directions somewhere? Well it’s hard to give someone directions without knowing where they are starting from. So you want to go hands-free? Kind of hard for the phone to hear you if it can’t listen through your microphone. Are you in a foreign country and need to translate a sign? This app would do that if only it could see the sign through your camera.

Are you following me? Are you picking up what I’m putting down? Are you riding my wave? Catching my drift? Snacking what I’m packing (wow the phrases that come out of a Google Search are fantastic)? Do you really think that telling an app it can’t use your location means you’ve gone off the grid and no one can see your location EVER?! I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but you are sadly mistaken. Your technology is tracking your location, listening to everything you say, and (if it has a camera) it’s also watching you. Just not through the apps, but through the actual device. So all of your careful preparation to not allow your apps to work properly is really just a waste of time. You’ve only made your life more difficult. 

Embrace the technology! If it’s spying on you anyways, you might as well let it control the temperature in your house, automatically dim the lights, handle your grocery shopping, find a dog sitter, set a sleep schedule so you get the maximum REM cycles and feel amazing in the morning, etc. Otherwise it’s like buying a Tesla and deciding to always drive it manually…just a waste of potential and money.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you know someone who is avoiding the full realm of possibilities with technology, share this post, freak them out, and get them to finally embrace all the available app power. Thanks for reading!


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