Category Archives: Philosophy

Methods of Purging

In my quest to simplify my life, I’ve been habitually purging the abundance of things I have. I take unwanted clothing and books to Goodwill, I get rid of stuff cluttering surfaces in my room. And recycle odd socks as dusting rags. I do all of these things in an effort to make my space easier to clean. The less I have, the less there is to make clutter.

It recently occurred to me though that purging can go beyond physical items. I need to purge in my digital life as well. In a recent email search I found over 100 unnecessary emails. Deleted them all. I also took some time to unsubscribe to recurring emails I just don’t want or read. Next, I’m more than certain, I have a more than a few “friends” on Facebook who can get the boot. And then there’s the pictures. 

unnecessaty photos in your digital device take up valuable memory space 

I recently bought a new phone. My previous one was three years old and slowly dying. I made the decision to replace it when I realized I could only have phone conversations on speaker phone and could only use the keyboard when the phone was horizontal. After some research I found a great replacement that I’m hoping will last another three years or more. 

“Would you like to transfer your pictures?” The sales person asked after I made my selection.

“Sure,” I replied. 

An hour and change later my new device was finally ready after taking on 1300 pics. Kinda ridiculous. So now on a regular basis, I’m purging photos as well. They can eat up valuable memory space and make your device run poorly.

Holding onto things I don’t need seems to weigh me down a lot more than I’d like. Letting it go is liberating and helps me move forward in life. I highly recommend it.


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Filed under Better Choices, Downsizing, Philosophy, Purging, Simple Life

Have We Normalized Hate…Again?

There seems to be no shortage of hate these days. Through the pusher magic that is the Internet and its legal drug, social media, we get to see hate every day. It’s in the form of news bites from the Presidential race, click bate articles and the ultimate miscommunication  communicator, memes. 

  It started on message boards. I remember in the early days of the Internet coming across some real nastiness, especially in the comment sections of news articles. Trolls felt empowered by upsetting people with their vile vitriol. It’s what trolls do. 

Then when social media took off it quickly became a free for all. Maybe it’s the lack of face to face contact that allows us to think online hate is ok. Maybe that’s what made it so easy for conservative talk radio hosts to spit out ideas that are great for ratings, but not so good for a healthy society.

Cable news soon followed suit. Feeding paranoia and fear to those who would rather consume easy answers than consider hard choices and critical thought. 

And now, here we are: All hate, all the time. It’s so ubiquitous that a good portion of Americans consider it a strength. Thus we have Donald Trump as the GOP front runner. 

We don’t have to live like this. Hate and judgement do not have to be the norm. Hate is an easy way out. It’s an easy answer to hard questions we don’t want to struggle through. Judgement is similarly so. With judgement we allow ourselves to only see life through our own lenses tainted with our own disappointments and personal snares we just don’t take the time to untangle. 

I’m beginning to understand how people must have felt during the civil rights movement: Indignant about a normalized hate that was so institutionalized that to oppose it was considered unlawful. And then came the fire hoses, and the bombs, and the assassins. 

I know this is like yelling at the wind, but all this hate has to stop. No good will come of it. 


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Filed under Better Choices, Message, Philosophy, Social Media

The Cost of Getting to Work

Recently, I moved up in the Restaurant game. I’m now working dinner service. There’s definitely some pros to this move. I sleep in every day, and have time run errands. One of the biggest cons though, is that my hours are not conducive to using public transit. This leaves me with an increased cost to get to work.

  The I-80 corridor between Vallejo and San Francisco is one of the most congested highways in the country. A typical morning commute is about two hours and change, bumper to bumper all the way. It’s insane to consider driving to San Francisco every day, to toil for eight plus hours, only to repeat the trip back, and pay two bridge tolls to boot, but people do it. Luckily, I won’t be in that mess. Working the dinner shift means driving straight through, and paying a dollar less in toll. I could, in theory still take public transit, but riding BART to catch a late night bus to get home two and a half hours later, isn’t exactly appealing.

This leaves me with a problem. Driving to the City, even with no traffic, which uses less gas, costs about $20 a day. That includes gas, tolls and parking. The cost difference between driving and taking public transit is significant. 

The frugal and environmental side of me says, take public transit. That’s what it’s there for. But, the self preservation side of me says, nope not a good idea, to walk the half mile at 11:00 PM downtown San Francisco to catch the last BART and hopefully catch the last bus to Vallejo, only to walk to my car at close to 1:00 in the morning downtown Vallejo.

 Let’s forgo the whole safety issue. I’ve got a game face after all, and I can handle myself in most situations.  It’s the fatigue factor that turns me off. Saving money is important to me, but not at the expense of my health. In this case, choosing the cheaper option would deteriorate my quality of life by making my trip home a chore. Who needs more chores? 

“Not I,”said the fly. 

My motivation for being frugal is not just about saving money. It’s about an economy of living where I use my resources, including my strength, skills, and time to achieve a satisfactory life. And sometimes, that means not taking the cheapest option. After all, what good is extra money if you’re making yourself miserable by making it saving it? 


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Filed under Better Choices, Frugal Life, Philosophy