Archive for December 2013

Results from 2013 Uber List: Under achievement

Instead of doing a New Year’s resolution, I make an uber list, a list of things big and small that I’d like to complete over the course of the year. My uber list for 2013 was a bit longer than usual because I was in the midst of my series of 40 item lists. I... Read more »

Lesson from Target data breach: Don't shop with your debit card

Lesson from Target data breach: Don't shop with your debit card
The most shocking thing to me about the recent Target data breach was not that it happened. Although the scope of the Target breach is extraordinary, I am always aware of the risks of using credit cards. I used to manage a Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) compliance program. I understand the... Read more »

Pickles & Cobain: A reader response to my 40 awful writing prompts

A few weeks ago I wrote a post called “40 really awful writing prompts that no writer should use.” At least one reader decided to take on the challenging of my rather bizarre writing prompts and decided to take on not one, not two, but three of my awful writing prompts in one short story.... Read more »
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The groupie

Hi. I’m sorry. I’m not usually the wait for a guy outside his dressing room type, but after we saw you today I just had to come back and see you again. Alone. Don’t freak out. I’m not a stalker or anything. Totally harmless. Look in my purse. No weapons or anything. I just want a... Read more »

Care for Real toy drive provided gifts to 800 children

Care for Real distributed toy drive donations to families on Tuesday, December 17. Executive Director Lyle Allen described this as their best year ever in terms of quantity and quality of donations. According to the Care for Real Facebook page gifts were provided for over 800 children. Thank you to everyone who donated either at... Read more »

White chocolate macadamia nut bars: My most requested cookie recipe

White chocolate macadamia nut bars: My most requested cookie recipe
I’ve been making these white chocolate macadamia nut bar cookies for over ten years, and they are always my most requested cookie recipe. I tend to be pretty lazy about copying recipes though and often don’t fulfill my promise to provide the details for how to make these. My hope is that in posting my white... Read more »
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The Twelve Days of Christmas with Swear Words

Warning: This post contains adult language. Actually, after this introduction this post is basically just a string of profanity. If that’s not your thing you should probably skip reading this. If, however, you love swear words I’ve got a special Twelve Days of Christmas song for you. I did warn you that there would be... Read more »

Wear Star Wars, Share Star Wars this Friday to support geek pride

Wear Star Wars, Share Star Wars this Friday to support geek pride
Friday, December 13th is the fourth annual “Wear Star Wars, Share Star Wars” Day. The event is meant to be an affirmation of geek pride for sci-fi fans of all genders and also a statement against bullying. If Star Wars isn’t your thing you can express yourself through your favorite science-fiction related items (“Wear Who, Share Who” perhaps?). The important thing is to teach... Read more »

What does Santa Claus do for your family?

What does Santa Claus do for your family?
Santa Claus is an all-seeing, immortal, polyglot, shape-shifter. By some accounts Santa is also a slave owner, although others claim that the elves receive fair compensation for their labor. Sometimes Santa seems truly omniscient, while at other times he needs to employ onsite surveillance via the Elf on the Shelf. (Or does the Elf on... Read more »
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Andersonville weekend events and toy drive update

Andersonville weekend events and toy drive update
This weekend the holiday celebrations continue in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood. While you are in the area for shopping, visiting Santa, and other fun please drop off a donation for the Care for Real toy drive. Drop off locations and online giving options are detailed below. Late Night Andersonville is on Friday, December 6th. Stores stay open... Read more »