Tag Archives: shopping

2016 in Review — Amazon Purchases

I placed 13 orders with Amazon in 2016.


Jan 12 — Round Ring View Binder, 1.5 Inch, 4 PackAvery Economy Clear Sheet Protectors, Box of 100

My scrapbook binder was full. I also started a goals binder filled it with journal entries, google docs, diagrams, etc. from the last 4 years relating to personal growth and career. I’m a  believer in typing out goals, desires, etc.

It makes you think about it, which is the first step. Secondly, it’s cool to look back and see that you’ve accomplished something, or made some steps. If you don’t reflect on what you’ve accomplished it can seem like nothing much has happened.

Tablet StylusJan 12 — elago Stylus Grip

I was curious if this stylus would work on my magic trackpad — it didn’t. It was kind of fun to use on the phone w/ a drawing app though. Not recommended.


Jan 12 — Extra-Rigid Fiberboard Photo/Document Mailers, 9 x 11.5 Inches, Box of 25

Just to have on hand in the office. Mainly for sending Doodl Club issues to contributors.


Jan 20 — AcuRite 00613A1 Indoor Humidity Monitor

Our apartment gets kind of cold in the winter, and I wondered “exactly how cold?” Now I’m kind of into checking the humidity too. Usually we’re at “OK.”


Jan 20 — #6 3/4 Security Envelopes

I thought I’d ordered #10 envelopes (these are the small ones). I put these out on the curb and someone picked them up right away.


Jan 20 — BIC Marking Permanent Marker Fashion Colors, Fine Point

These came up on reviews as ‘least smelly’ permanent markers. Sharpies make me nauseous. These are better, but I still don’t like them that all that much. For me, it’s good old felt tips.


Jan 20 — Slik Sprint Pro II Tripod in Gun Metal With Quick Release Ball Head & Case

I wanted a tripod for making my Doodl Club time lapse videos. Usually I really belabor reviews and specs, but I bought the cheapest one recc’d by wirecutter in this case. I thought it had a 90° head, but it doesn’t. I make it work anyhow.

Now that Doodl Club is retired, I’ve been using it for product shots for Makrosha.


Feb 3 — Futurebatt® AC Adapter Charger Magsafe 2 45W 14.85V 3.05A for Apple Macbook Air

My original charger was all frayed out, but still worked. I’d left it at the advertising agency office and they threw it away. Rude! This one was like $12 and it works fine.


Feb 23Wacom Intuos Pen Small Tablet

Sometimes I leave my wacom at the office, or home. I have a hard time getting any work done without it. A bit frivolous, but I got this one as a backup. This new one doesn’t work with the wireless adapter though.


Apr 12 —  Minimalist Slim  Wallet

My previous slim wallet was purchased at Dillard’s in 1999. This one is pretty great, with lots of pockets while remaining slim for about $15. In a store like J. Crew they try and charge you $80 for something like this! This one blocks RFID readers, which I don’t care about too much, but is interesting because I had credit card info stolen right before I got it. Great wallet.


Apr 12#10 Envelopes

Because I got the wrong size before.


Apr 12 — Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work

A guy I met said it changed his life and I suppose I wanted my life changed too. I think about the nature of work more than doing work. Remains unread. I did read the intro and there a good line about your pay being called “compensation” because it’s not something you’d do otherwise.

I have 5 books next to my bed. If I read them, I’m going to buy myself the kindle paperwhite that I’ve been eyeing.


Apr 12 — 4-inch Pizza Wheel

We eat more frozen pizza than I care to admit. I buy them when doing the shopping thinking it’ll hang around in the freezer in case we don’t have any real food and it always gets eaten within 3 days. I like Digorno and the Paul Newman ones the best. This big pizza wheel cuts em up pretty good.


Apr 12 — Contour Memory Foam Pillow

Esha used the pillow I got last year and wanted one of her own. Now we each have our own contour memory foam pillow.

May 11 — Rubbermaid Commercial High Heat Silicone Spatula, 13.5″, Red Handle

The old spatula was crumbling apart (I always wonder if we end up eating the bits of utensils that seem to chip away … especially our knife). I think America’s Test Kitchen said this was the best, and it is. I’ve noticed it being used on the cooking show I like (A Chef’s Life) too.

May 11Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Headphones

My office neighbors at the coworking space were talking all the time and driving me crazy. Got these fancy headphones thinking they were noise-canceling, but they weren’t. I moved out of the co-working office in July, and didn’t use them that much. Sold them on eBay in December for $50.

cheap x-acto blades

May 11X-acto Blades

Not sure x-actly why I needed these. These were the best price for the quantity and good to have around.

bike stuff from amazon

July 26Chain Lube,  Bike Lights, Bike Tires

Some stuff to fix up my slowly rusting bike. I’d started working in the city again, and figured I’d commute to get some exercise. The ride from my house to the flatiron was so stressful, it just wasn’t worth it. By the time I’d get to work I was in a terrible mood. I rode a handful of times and gave up. It’s also kind of a pain to get my bike in and out of the house. I should probably get rid of it, but I daydream that I’ll live somewhere with basement next year and I’ll be a cyclist again.

Aug 11 — Prospectors Gold Rush Pomade

There was a hip barber shop in LIC that I’d gone to pretty consistently for about a year. They did a good job, but it was $40 and after I’d move offices, not that convenient. This is the pomade they sold me, it’s light and not too sticky. Now I get my haircuts on 23rd Street for $25.


Oct 3 — Peacock & Vine: On William Morris and Mariano FortunyIn Bloom: Creating and Living With Flowers

I got these for Esha’s birthday. She said she liked the textile history one.

Oct 3S.W.A.G. Bar

Also for Esha’s birthday. This was on Shark Tank a long time ago, and she seemed interested. I think it’s a loofa with soap in it? She liked it.

Oct 30 — Fire HD 8 Tablet

I’d been kinda wanting a tablet for a long time, but didn’t think it’d be worth it. The good ones were like almost the price of a decent laptop. I got this kindle one for $85. I love it and use it way too much. This dirt cheap tablet works pretty good, but they try to lock you out of all the decent apps. With about 20 min of research I ‘hacked’ it and got the regular apps on it.

I think I’m going to have to start shutting it off and putting it in a drawer because I waste hours on it every night. Tablets are the biggest time-wasters because you can only consume with them. Nothing about them promotes creating. And they’re a better experience than a phone, so you don’t put it down. Great purchase, but too much.


Nov 16 — Leather Writing Journal Notebook, The Westing GameEscape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library, Pokemon Headphones

Meredith at work signed us up to buy presents for kids. We got letters from the kids saying what they wanted. I think my kid is sensitive. He wanted specific pokeman cards (didn’t get b/c it’d have blown the whole budget), a diary for boys (is this a thing? I saw someone else posting about it), books, and headphones. I compromised on the pokeman thing and got poké headphones. Hopefully he likes everything. I signed the cards as if I were Santa and encouraged him to stay cool.

Dec 5 — 6.5 x 4.5 Rigid Photo Mailers

Surprisingly hard to find a small rigid mailer. Bought these to send out pinpal pins in. They didn’t come in time, and ended up using random envelopes from the 99¢ store.

Pleased with how pinpal worked out. I’d felt sheepish because I tend to search for reasons to discredit and not follow through with ideas. Several people wrote articles about how the safety pin was lazy and passive. I kinda agreed. I also heard from people, like Esha, that thought it was good to show and wear your support. Thanks to lots of friends, we sold out pretty quickly and sent $1450 to the Southern Poverty Law Center — that felt good. A goal for 2017 is to find or create more volunteer opportunities.

Fake Shoes

Esha was looking into sourcing some some stuff from Alibaba, so I got to looking around the internet for how-to guides and insights. In my search I got sucked in to the world of fake shoes.

Chiefly, the repsneakers subreddit — these dudes scour Chinese websites and create detailed reviews examining every little detail, and how they compare to real shoes.

My fake Pirate Black 350s
$50. Fake Yeezy Pirate Black Boost 350s I’ve worn for ~2 weeks

If you don’t know anything about this whole streetwear / sneakerhead thing — these brands release limited amounts of product and limit the amount an individual can buy. There’s a whole secondary market of waiting in line, buying, and reselling for profit. For instance, the hot shoe is Kanye’s YEEZY Boost 350. It retailed for $200, but is sold out and goes for nearly $1000 on Amazon.

$50. These aren't as popular as Yeezy's. If you can find them, they go for ~$200

$50. These are NMDs — not as popular as Yeezy’s. This colorway is hard to get. But others are readily available

The repheads develop relationships with the suppliers. “Did you see David’s 7th batch” “Is Jessie answering messages?” “Have you seen Eva’s new pics?” … they know there is no “David” but the supplier has taken on this handle and become their own mini-brand with distinct reputations. Some of them work with the suppliers to refine and develop the details on each new “batch.”

Insider lingo and acronyms:

  • LC — Legit Check, having the group check to see if they’re getting ripped off by a reseller of retail sneakers
  • QC — Quality Control photos … users ask Chinese suppliers to send them verified photos of the actual shoes they’ll be getting, usually via WhatsApp
  • W2C — Wanted to Cop
  • TD (turtledove), PB (pirate black), MR (moonrocks), OT (oxford tan) — the various colorways of Boost 350s

Ordering is reminiscent of the wild west days. You might get a confirmation number, it might work, you aren’t really sure when they’ll arrive, if they’ll get shredded by customs, or if there is any recourse if the shoes are messed up somehow. The anticipation of what will show up and when is half of the fun. People get pretty worked up about the customer service they’re receiving and how soon they’ll get their illegal shoes being shipped from the other side of the world, showing how much we’ve come to expect from e-commerce.

Sometimes they don't ship in a box. Just wrapped in plastic
Arrived like this

For the price, the shoes are fairly comfortable. I suspect the retail versions are a bit better, but not enough to justify the cost. I’ve only seen one other person wearing 350s in the wild. A few people on the street have asked me about my shoes, and I tell them they’re bootlegs. Most people have no idea what the shoes are in the first place, but my heart does race a little bit if I’m approaching a group of high-schoolers.

TD Boost 350s

These TD Boost 350s came with some Tommy Hilfinger socks and a fake receipt
These TD Boost 350s came with some Tommy Hilfinger socks and a fake receipt

They seem like regular old shoes once you get them. Looking at the logos printed on the side really puts in to perspective that all things are hand made — by someone, somewhere. There’s no Adidas machine spitting these out. Now, if you so desire, you can have anything you wanted produced in a factory if you bother to send a few emails.

The fact that we’re now so connected that a high school kid in the suburbs can negotiate textile swatches with someone on the other side of the world over text message is a mind boggle for sure.

Sellers modify the logos — but they arrive w/ real logos
Sellers modify the logos on their listings — but they arrive w/ real logos


2015 in Review — Amazon Purchases


Jan 30 — Google Nexus 6 Synthetic Leather Smartphone Sleeve.

This case was listed at 1¢ in order to get reviews, but it wasn’t worth it. Too much hassle to pull out of the sleeve. My phone is massive and easy to drop. I’ve busted the screen 2x and it costs $350 to replace.


Jan 30 — ExOfficio Men’s Give-N-Go Brief

Terrible, tight. Supposed to be travel underwear that dry quickly, but they don’t “breathe” and cause more odor than they prevent. Hate wearing these, but have kept them for those days that I’ve been too lazy to get my laundry done. Maybe I’ll travel somewhere and need to wash my underwear in the sink next year too! I’m definitely on the lookout for a great fitting underwear. When I find them I’ll buy 18 pairs.


Jan 30 — Martha Stewart Crafts Fringe Scissors

Thought these would be handy to have around the house to cut up sensitive documents like a miniature paper shredder, but I hardly ever use them. We used them to cut herbs a couple times.


Feb 23 —  Sparco Long Reach Stapler

Needed a stapler and figured I’d get a long reach one in case I ever wanted to make a booklet or something. I had one years ago, but I think Kelly has it, or I left it at Todd Oldham’s office. I’ve not made any booklets, but I did staple at least 10 things.


Feb 23 — Georgia-Pacific Standard 92 Multipurpose Paper

~700 / 1500 sheets remaining.


Feb 23 — Madi K’s Whole Natural Almonds, 1-Ounce Bags (Pack of 48)

I’m always on the lookout for good office snacks. Got these single serve nuts because I would eat a whole can of nuts the same day I got it. Now I get raw cashews because they don’t taste that good and I won’t binge on them too much.


Mar 1 — Dissident Gardens

Set in the neighborhood I live in. Started reading it 3x but haven’t made it past 20 pages. I am not very good at reading books anymore and I’m trying to decide if that’s a problem or not.


Apr 13 — Kashi Chewy Granola Bars, Chocolate Almond and Sea Salt with Chia

Studio snacks. I got a bunch of granola bars and kinda gained some weight. I think it’s because I’d eat like 3 at a time. No more granola bars.


Apr 13 — Pentel Sign Pen, Fiber-Tipped, Black Ink

My favorite pens! They make big fat lines that look way more important and artsy.


Apr 13 — Swingline Staples

That long stapler did not come with staples :/


Apr 13 — AA AAA Battery Charger with and 4 Pack AA Rechargeable Batteries 

Things that need batteries: bluetooth keyboard and trackpad, swiffer, tv remote.


Apr 21 — The 4 Hour Body

Thought maybe this would have some secrets to being healthy and buff that didn’t require working out or dieting. Takeaways that I’ve sort of incorporated: Kettlebells, eating a protein only breakfast w/in 30min of waking up (sometimes). Maybe someday I’ll pick it up again and add some more gems to my regimens.


Apr 25 — The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing

Skimmed. Can’t recall any of the laws.


May 5 — Applebee’s Gift Card

Birthday gift for Mom.


Aug 2 — Paisley Pattern Sock

An option for my wedding day. Didn’t end up wearing this pair. Kinda too small.


Aug 2 — Contour Memory Foam Pillow

My neck had been bothering me. How often do you throw away pillows?


Aug 2 — Woven White Paisley Pocket Square

For wedding day.

sock2Aug 2 — Paisley Dress Socks

Wore this pair on wedding day.


Aug 2 — Men’s Running Short

This color was a bit cheaper and I found out why — it’s flesh color and it looks like your pants-less. Esha gets real made when I wear them.


Aug 2 — 8 Pack No Show Liner Fake Socks

You can never have enough no show socks! These are decent ones. I think they’re Korean and they run pretty small, which is an asset when you’re not showing your socks off.


Aug 2 — Nexus 6 Armband

Don’t really use this. My phone is too big to run with.


Aug 2 — Personalized Custom Logo Embosser Seal

Got the doodl club logo turned into an embosser. Very pleased w/ this.



Sep 25 — Scanner

I guess I needed to scan something? Wish it was wifi compatible.



Sep 25 — Men’s Running Short

The logic is that if I keep buying running stuff, I’ll guilt myself into running. Not sure that I’ve worn these yet.



Sep 25 — Titanium Straight Scissors

Was attracted to the copper-y color. These are scissors for my office.


Sep 25 — Fold-Up Hex Keys

Needed to remove the arms from my office chair. I thought I’d lost my other set, but it was in my ratchet and socket case. I can’t believe I own as many tools as I do considering I have very limited use for them.


Oct 23 — Probiotics

I was asked to buy and review this for my day job.


Oct 23 — Self-Seal Stay Flat Mailers

Used for sending samples of dood club. Feel like I should be mailing eveyone’s with these heavier mailers, but they’re expensive, and cost another dollar to mail. I’m already losing money on each one I send out as is! I’ve only had one complaint about them arriving bent up, so hopefully they ship w/o too much damage.


Oct 23 — OXO Good Grips Dustpan and Brush Set

So hard to find a dustpan that is flat to the ground. I think maybe I will try to sharpen the edge somehow.


Oct 23 — Crayola 36ct Colored Pencils

Colored sounds racist to me :/


Oct 23 — Toner

For my printer! I print off a list of what I need to do at the end of the day, so I’ll have it ready for me the next morning. It’s like my own personal assistant telling me what I need to do.



Oct 23 — 32GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive

Nice to have around.


Nov 18 — The Field, Games People Play, The Trusted Advisor, Blue Ocean Strategy, How to Be Funny, Why Smart People Make Big Money Mistakes

My favorite amazon non-fiction ‘hack’ is that most books are on there used for 1¢ + 3.99 s&h. I add books to my wishlist whenever I see some dumb “smartest book” or reccomendations list. Then I either find a lecture on youtube by the author or longform podcast. If I can’t find one of those, I’ll buy the book. BUT … like I said earlier, I think maybe I can’t read anymore.


Nov 30 — USB Microphone, Wind Screen

I’ve been thinking of starting up my podcast again. I was pretty excited to get this, but it’s too good and picks up tons of white noise in my office. I gotta spend some time to figure out how to make it clean.