Video Episode 1:Director of Social Media? Pro Twitter Evangelist? Welcome to SEO

June 17th, 2009

Diz rants about how she is "forced" to take a job working for her boyfriend Drake, as his director of Social Media, Pro Twitter Evangelist for BlackWaterOps.com his SEO, SEM, and Social Media Company. Can a relationship stand working this closely in this brave a frontier? SEO may never be the same, nor will our relationship.  

Our Relationship

2 Girls 4 Hands The Ultimate In Relaxing Massage

May 10th, 2009

One of the best things about trips to LA, is visiting my two favorite massage girls, June and Nadia.

These two beautiful girls can make me melt into the table.  They are worth every penny.

June gives a firm touch massage that at times has me on the border of tears it hurts so good, and Nadia has a softer touch that calms. This combination is like fire and ice, and allows them to give a very therapeutic massage that releases tight muscles with out causing new tension from the flinching normally associated with having sore spots rubbed away.

This is a “Girl Friend Approved Massage” meaning Diz knows that June and Nadia only offer services on the up and up. They offer no extra services, no “happy endings”, just a great massage.

Because they have to work for their money as opposed to giving guys a cheap thrill they are amazing at what they do.  I come out of their sessions feeling 9 years younger.  (If I felt 10 years younger I wouldn’t be old enough to drink…).

This kind of luxury doesn’t come cheap.

  • Four Hand Massage (Two Girls) 60 Minutes: $200
  • Four Hand Massage (Two Girls) 90 Minutes: $280
  • Two Hand Massage (One Girl) 60 Minutes:$100
  • Two Hand Massage (One Girl) 90 Minutes:$140
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    But again they are the best and worth every penny.

    If you tell them Brandon Sent you and ask for the 75 Minute Massage, you can get an extra 15 minutes for the $200 price. or the 90 minute for $250.

    You can visit their website at 2 Girls 4 Hands and get a great massage.

    Travel

    Le Parc Suites in West Hollywood

    April 20th, 2009

    Le Parc is easily one of my favorite Hotels in the LA area.

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    The above pic is not perfect but you can see that the room is huge.

    I often staid at Le Parc Suites in West Hollywood even before they were on Hotwire, but now that they are.  I was able to stay there for less than $100 a night.

    That’s an amazing deal for a Hotel where you might run in to a rockstar, like Kelly Clarkson who I met on my first stay there.

    It’s also a great deal for a room that includes a kitchen and dining area.

     

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    Couch and Sitting Area.

     

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    Office Area.

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    Powder Room.

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    And a Very nice Bathroom with step down tub and shower.

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    Le Parc also has Gnoll’s restaurant on site which is a quiet, nice dining experience with great service because it typically only has 4 people in the dining room which holds 20.  They also deliver to your room if you want to eat at the dining area in your room, or will deliver pool side if you like to dine on the roof.

    Le Parc is one of the best places if you want to take meeting, or just unwind.  You don’t feel claustrophobic in their rooms, and being a few blocks in to suburbia off the main drag, it’s always quiet.  Unless you book the week that Def Jam rents most the hotel, but they have always warned me when I was booking during those times.

    Travel

    The Dive that is Comfort Inn & Suites Lamplighter in San Luis Obispo

    April 20th, 2009

    I stay in a lot of nice hotels, but I also stay in a lot of cheap hotels.  Occasionally I get lucky and get both.  Several Mom and Pop Hotels off the beaten path have been $35 a night and bordered on Bed and Breakfast quality.

    The Dive that is Comfort Inn & Suites Lamplighter in San Luis Obispo, CA is not one of those.

    I checked in late at night it was about 1 am when I arrived at the Comfort Inn, and the attendant was nice, but it was all down hill from there.

    I didn’t really check the room out when I first got there, or I might have decided to sleep in the car.

    I did notice right away that the sink dripped and the drain plug was broken, but the drip, drip, drip that I was hearing was actually in the next room’s bathroom, so all night, DRIP, DRIP, DRIP, Woosh as the tank refilled.

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    It wasn’t until the next morning I noticed how nasty the sheets were.

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    Here’s a close up of that ugly stain.  I don’t want to know what it is, but when bleaching doesn’t take the stain out, throw away the sheets ok?  I have been in dives that at least cut the stain out and patched it.  Less than ideal, but didn’t make me feel dirty.

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    And the shower.

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    If the room were clean, it would still have been an expensive place at $75 a night plus tax.

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    I don’t need much, but at that price the room should be clean and look pleasant.  At any price the room should be sanitary enough I don’t wake up, and feel dirty.

    Comfort Inn & Suites Lamplighter in San Luis Obispo, CA apparently is remodeling some of the rooms according to locals, so maybe it is better on the other half of the hotel, but that is still no excuse.

    Travel

    Love Sac Sactionals Modular Furniture

    April 16th, 2009

    I move a lot.  And I keep throwing away couches because as my space changes things don’t fit.  So I decided to invest in some furniture that was easier to move, easier to rearrange and would work in more spaces.

    This is how I ended up with LoveSac. Charlie from LoveSac sold me my first 4 bases and 5 backs while at Sundance film festival. I’m now addicted and will likely be ordering another 2 bases and 2 sides, and maybe a full couch 3 bases and 5 sides.

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    I have a picture on order for behind the couch (it looks bare in this picture), and the rest of the covers should be enroute but shipped from a different location than the bases.

    Interestingly this all comes via fedex, and I could fit a loveseat easily in my Mini Cooper.  As you can see Nala is a big fan.

    The LoveSac Sactional seems to be easy to remove cat hair from, and it sleeps well.  It’s low enough to the ground that things don’t end up under it.  My only complaint is that there is quite a bit of branding on it. Sure my TV says Samsung, and my my Xbox says Xbox, but the couch cushions have Love sac tags on the top, rather than the bottom where I could keep them hidden and are really sewn in so I can’t just pull them.

    Home Decor

    Considering Driving Ferrari 430 Scuderia in the 2009 Gumball 3000

    April 11th, 2009

    So my good friend Chris hears I’m shopping Ferrari’s and says… How do you feel about one with a few miles on it?  I’m like Really? You think I should get a used Ferrari? Chris is doing ok, but he is cheap, as demonstrated by his shack near Pizmo Beach.  He says “It will be new when you first drive it”.

    After dancing me around for a while he finally the other day told me what the deal is.  He is working on a Charity Auction to be Co-driver in the Gumball 3000. The starting bid is $400k Which is about $120k over list for this 2009 Ferrari 430 Scuderia, and I was really thinking about getting one in White to Cut down on the Cop Stops… But you get to drive in the race, and the notoriety that comes with having had it in the Gumball 3000 is worth something. And this 2009 Ferrari 430 Scuderia is a tuned model done by Risi Competizione which adds to the value, and spending time beside Mika Salo would be awesome.

    And according to the Auction site you also get:

    • Two seats at either their US Tour or Road and Racing events

    • Honorary membership with Risi Competizione

    • A complete set of racing gear (helmet, driving suit, gloves, shoes, etc.)

    I did stop at the Seattle Ferrari dealer and look at this one.

    2009 Ferrari 430 Scuderia similar to the one I might race in Gumball 3000

    Which weighs in at $302k so I’m doing the qualification for the E-bay auction, we’ll see what portion of the donation is tax deductible and if I can come out a head or close on this deal.

    Oddly Diz is ok with this, I thought I’d get an earful of “don’t do that you’ll die”  Maybe she thinks she is on my life insurance policy…

    I am also a supporter of Hole in the Wall Camps, as many of you know.

    But if you don’t… Here is a bit about Hole in the Wall Camps.

    The Association of Hole in the Wall Camps is a not for profit umbrella organization set up to serve existing Hole in the Wall Camps as well as camps in formation. Our mission is to extend the magical Hole in the Wall Camps experience to as many children with serious illnesses and life-threatening conditions as possible. www.holeinthewallcamps.org

    Cars

    Sony Webbie HD MHS-PM1 Seriously Sucks

    March 25th, 2009

    Since the iPhone doesn’t do even sucky video, I have been looking for a “Flip” style Camcorder for Diz to carry in her purse for when she wants to shoot a quick video or pose with her friends, the kinds of things girls do with little cameras, which I might benefit from on occasion.

    I had been stalling waiting for the Webbie HD from Sony (the MHS-PM1) to ship. And as it came out Monday I picked one up today, and have to say, you don’t even get what you pay for sometimes.

    The Menus are far from intuitive.  The Webbie HD shipped in 720p mode, and I wanted to really see what it could do with 1080p 30.  Well it took a good 10 minutes to figure out that to do this you push the button with the trash can on it.  A sign of the things to come.

    Once I was up and shooting, about 3 minutes in I had filled the internal memory which is miniscule, really only enough to store the drivers and the Video uploading software which the camera comes with.

    Not to be dissuaded I plugged the USB cable in to download the video I had just shot only to discover that the camera was in “web cam” mode.  I get an error on my Windows Vista Laptop (a sexy Sony Viao) saying “there is no driver for this device (MHS-PM1)”.  I pop in the CD that came with the Webbie HD and figure it will autodetect and be happy.  Nope.

    I switch the camera to Mass Storage mode and download the 1440x1080p video which while shot in 16:9 mode plays back on the PC in 4:3 mode.  Diz will think that’s fantastic, as she will be 33% skinnier when standing up, but those shots of her lying by the pool she’ll be 33% fatter…um less skinnier?… in any event the video plays back in the wrong mode.

    At this point I embark on my search for drivers to make the camera work as a web cam.  Diz only has a Fixed web cam in her laptop, and it is always pointed the wrong way when she attaches a keyboard an monitor so this was a “big” feature for her.

    Sony’s support site says zero about the MHS-PM1, so I look at its sister product the MHS-CM1, which has a note at the bottom of the page “USB Streaming is not supported on Microsoft Vista”.  So a camera that came out at CES doesn’t work with the laptop that came out at CES? 

    You might as well put out co-ordinates in your spring line, that the tops only match with pants from your fall line. 

    Then there is the battery / recharging issues.  The battery has to be taken out an put on the charger.  There is a DC in Port on the Camera, but that only allows you to run with out draining the battery, not actually charge the battery.

    You’d expect that the camera could run off the power from the USB cable, maybe even charge off of it.  Nope.  If you plug the camera in via USB it lights up the LCD to tell you the mode, draining the battery as much as using the camera, and doesn’t pull power from the USB to keep from draining the battery.

    Digging out my old XP laptop, the Webcam did work, but barely.  Unlike my Microsoft Webcam which will do 720p 15fps, the Webbie tops out at 640×480 at 30fps.  And while you have that great LCD screen on, and lit up, it doesn’t show you the video you just a black screen that says “Web Cam Mode”.  Oh, and if you were going to web cam for more than about 45 minutes you would need the DC adapter that doesn’t come in the box.

    Unlike the cheaper not quite as “cute” Insignia, the Webbie HD doesn’t have HDMI out, instead it has a proprietary connector for Component.

    Will I be keeping this? Maybe.  It is the most stylish of the Pocket camcorders, it is a royal pain for Diz that her Laptop doesn’t have a Memory Stick slot, so she has to move files via the USB cable, so likely it will go in my jacket rather than her purse, and I’ll get her the. HDR-TG1 instead.

    Personal Electronics

    S. T. Dupont Medici “Desk Set”

    March 21st, 2009

    Diz was giving me grief while flipping through the channels on TV and we saw the scene in “Dead Poets Society” where the boy receives the same desk set that he received the previous year for his birthday.  “Didn’t you just buy a desk set?”.  Yes if you call the Clock, Pens and Lighters from S. T. Dupont inlayed with platinum, a “Desk Set”, I just bought a desk set.

    It is actually a “Smoke Set” with much more to do with lighting a cigar than writing thing down.

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    I was most interested in it for the fountain pen however as someone seems to have walked off with my previous one, and while this pen is far more expensive, I figure people will steal sign a contract and walk with a $50 pen, my $3,500 pen should be less likely to have “legs”

    I picked my Medici up at a high end cigar shop in LA, but here is a link to the same one on Amazon, (little cheaper too) if you are interested.

    Business Items

    Hoverwing Pic Taken on the Potomac River

    March 1st, 2009

    I had been meaning to post this pic of what I want for Christmas.  When I was hanging out in Virginia a few months back.  It is a Hoverwing. A kind of half hovercraft, half airplane, half boat.  Supposedly under $20k but I need to find out if I get a boat license? ATV? Ultra-Light?  I’m guessing I can’t have one in California, but Nevada is pretty loose on such things.

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    Sorry I don’t have a better pic.  I cropped this pic, because bikini clad Diz, didn’t want to be in the shot.

    Seemingly Random

    iRobot Scooba Gives Lucinda a Day Off

    March 1st, 2009

    The Office Loft has beautiful concrete floors.  Great for keeping down the dust, running the RC car, and playing basketball.  That said the house cleaner Lucinda hates them since the vacuum just blows fuzz from the cats around the place.  So I bought an iRobot Scooba.

    iRobot Scooba in box 

    The Scooba does a good job, and it is reasonably quiet, about one time in 10 it needs rescuing from the entertainment stand, the gap underneath which is almost exactly the height of the scooba. 

    The default cleaner has bleach in it which I have been opting not to use, after I tracked some wetness on to the carpet, and left a white spot.

    iRobot Scooba on Concrete

    The Scooba is nicer looking than my Roomba used to be.  Not as good looking as Lucinda, but it doesn’t complain, and this lets Lucinda focus on blinds, and other tasks robots can’t yet help with.

    Home Appliances