Author Archives: Raoul

About Raoul

With a fairly unusual first name, this is where I have to stress VERY STRONGLY that these posts are my personal opinions and in no way reflect anything at all to do with my employer. For employer-approved content, take a look at my work blog.

Zipcar fail

I’ve been a user / member of zipcar for 5 or more years.  I don’t think I’m a heavy user by their standards, but I probably rent from them 1-2 times a month and there were periods when I was … Continue reading

Posted in Life, Travel, WTF? | 2 Comments

Evolution of New York City, in context

I was listening to an “In Our Time” (my new favorite podcast) episode on the history of the city and was struck by the discussion on the impact of development on pre-existing cities.  Most of the discussion was on European … Continue reading

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Pixies at the Beacon – first in a series

It’s turning into the summer of live music for Kim and me – starting with the Pixies at the Beacon last week.I love the Beacon Theatre as a venue – I’ve seen Van there twice and saw Eddie Vedder there … Continue reading

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The wretched state of “healthcare” in the US, part 279

I have high blood pressure – well under control – but whenever I have to deal with the various health insurance layers of obfuscation I’m sure it spikes to dangerous levels. The latest is whether or not when BlueCross BlueShield … Continue reading

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Fitbit Charge HR

I finally broke down and got the Fitbit Charge HR last week (AT&T had a 15% off sale) and so far I am liking it.  The trouble with the market being saturated with wearables right now is that there is way … Continue reading

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New pics on my photo blog

Go check them out  

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Goals for this year

1. Improve my Spanish (reading and speaking) 2. Sell my apartment and buy a new one 3. Travel somewhere new 4. Become a (slightly) better skier and surfer 5. Be happy and healthy 6. Pay off all debt apart from … Continue reading

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Books read

I had meant to keep track of all the books I read last year somewhere.  Since I have got better at maintaining my blog pages in the past few months I added a page here to update and track them.

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Update and clarification on Windows Phone

The last post on my and my mother’s frustration with her new Windows Mobile phone generated the most feedback of any blog post I have ever posted here.  Most of the feedback was well intentioned (I approved every comment that … Continue reading

Posted in Family, Tech | 3 Comments

Windows phone – a disastrous christmas present

My 75 year old mother needed a new cell phone – she travels quite a lot within the UK and lives alone and it was time.  She’s been using an ancient Nokia for years – it’s at least ten years … Continue reading

Posted in Family, Life, Tech | 30 Comments

The sad, confused state of healthcare in the USA 2014

I’m not going to get into the whole messed-up big picture of all that is wrong in the current state of healthcare – just give a micro example of the dysfunction that is endemic. I live in New York, and … Continue reading

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Friends

I had breakfast this morning with an old college friend.  He was in town to run the NY marathon for charity and I reached out to him on twitter and made the time to catch up.  He was my best … Continue reading

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How much is one United MileagePlus mile worth?

I’m winding down my status on any of the airlines because I get pretty much the same benefits on United having their credit card as I do having silver status and its nice to not have to travel as much. … Continue reading

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100 Healthy Days – day 43

So I haven’t really been reporting and I have fallen off the wagon a little bit over the last couple of weeks – and then regained focus this week. I do feel like I’ve been paying more attention both to … Continue reading

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Dishonesty in business – a crisis of late capitalism?

After my latest experience of being lied to and misled by a business (Chase credit cards this time) I reflected on the peculiar pathology that seems to be all around us.  A certain subset of businesses (usually the larger ones, … Continue reading

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Low carb vegetarian?

On the trip I was reading about a competitive swimmer in his forties who was eating right and training 4+ hours a day and still gaining weight.  I’m not training that hard, but I’ve been eating <1500 cals a day … Continue reading

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100 Healthy Days – day 21

Back at home after a trip to Maine.  Too much beer drunk and less than optimal diet, but good for the soul and mental health, and that’s an important trade-off.  Lots of walking this weekend – 7+ miles in the … Continue reading

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100 Healthy Days – days 12, 13, & 14

The second weekend of my challenge went WAY better than the first.  Friday night I walked up to meet Kim from work, we had dinner at Penelope and then walked back – 4 miles RT to help digest dinner. We … Continue reading

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100 Healthy Days – days 9, 10, & 11

Much better progress. Went to the gym wednesday and had a long walk (4.6 miles) through SoHo, NoLita, and Chinatown last night.  Diet has been consistent and water intake good. Booked a car to go to go surfing on Sunday, … Continue reading

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100 Healthy days – day 9

Much, much better.  Back on track with diet and exercise. One hour at the gym – 50 mins bike plus some weights.  Fake chicken and ranchero beans for dinner.  Good sleep.

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