The Season of Stuff

In a few days, the Season of Stuff will officially begin. During this season, we are actively encouraged to get more stuff, buy more stuff, give stuff to those we “love”, and be thankful for the stuff we have.

This Friday, for instance, sellers of stuff will drop prices to all time lows in order to make it easier for you to give and receive this stuff. Of course, this is in the hopes that the money saved on this stuff will encourage you to buy other non-discounted stuff. You know this, of course, right? You cherry pick the cheap stuff and leave the other stuff for the suckers, right? Of course you do…

All of this stuff will generate a bunch of stuff to be thrown away or recycled. Wrapping, packaging, spent gift cards – they all have to end up somewhere. Not to mention all of the stuff we had to build and machines we run in order to make the stuff we give and receive.Then once the season is over, in fact the very next day, comes the inevitable stuff we have to return (for cash to buy stuff if you have the receipt, exchange for different stuff if not).

Just try to remember that there are plenty of ways to deal with this stuff. You can pledge to get rid of an amount of stuff equal to the amount you receive. You can let those who love you know that you do not want more stuff but want something less tangible instead (breakfast in bed, money for a favorite charity, etc.). Ask for specific stuff you really truly need that will add years of value to your life on a daily basis… and stuff. The point is, control the stuff. Don’t let the stuff control you.

Minimal Audio

Thought I would take a bit to share my absolute favorite minimal audio setup…

What you are looking at here is my iPod 5G connected through the auxiliary jack of my Tivoli PAL radio. This little setup has some great advantages and awesome sound. Obviously, the iPod could be substituted with any other player here. The real story is the PAL.

It is actually kind of magic how Tivoli has managed to make one speaker give rich, warm consistent sound that can fill a room. Don’t just take my word for it, go read some reviews of this thing. The sound is nothing short of amazing. It sounds similar to an old tube system. Not only that but, as you can tell using the iPod as a comparison, it takes up very little space. It is easily “portable” to take on a trip. Also, the PAL has a built in rechargable battery and rubber coated housing designed to be taken outside. Plus, of course, there is the option of unplugging the iPod and just listening to the radio.

If you have a small space and you want a quality sounding audio solution, that is affordable, it is hard to go wrong with this.