May. 2nd, 2017

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My second Fitbit Charge HR died last week. And I really mean died. The two arms just popped right off the central watch and when you looked at it afterward, you couldn't see any indication that they'd been affixed in the first place.

It was no surprise and no shock. That Fitbit's arm bands started bubbling and getting loose a year ago, and even though it was slightly out of warranty I got Fitbit to send me a replacement at the time because it was just several months after my first Fitbit Charge HR did the same thing. But then B. over on FB suggested buying a sleeve for it. So I got one, and it kept the peeling armband from looking bad, and perhaps it kept the vulnerable components under from totally breaking, like was the case with my first one. And I got an extra year of use out of it.

So now I'm on my third and last Fibit Charge HR. Experience says it'll start falling apart in 5-9 months. And I'm sure I won't get them to send a fourth Fitbit because we're now like 14 months out of warranty.

I have really conflicted feelings about Fitbit. Their software and gamification are all spot on, but the manufacture of that Fitbit Charge HR was just awful. One of the worst consumer electronic goods I've ever bought, since two fell apart to the point where I asked for warranty replacement with 15 months or so.

Ah well. K's Charge HR II seems to be holding up, so I may be thinking about one of those come Christmas-time. If #3 lasts that long. I wish these devices could have held out for a Charge HR III though!

After work last night, I went out to buy some shoes.

I've got some gray tennies that aren't worn through all the way, but they've always been a little bit tight. And, since I started having some dull pain in my right foot lately that seemed (maybe) to get worse when I wore the gray tennies, it seemed like a time to replace them.

I biked up to El Cerrito to the discount shoe store there ("DB Shoes"). As I told K. at the time, I'm not going to get to casually bike out for this type of light errand when we live in Hawaii. But, there are pluses and minuses to every locale.

DB Shoes has been my primary location to purchase shoes for a decade or so. And, I was distressed when I got there to see big "Going Out of Sale" signs. Fortunately, the sale didn't seem to have been going on for long, as the shelves weren't yet picked clean. But everything was in complete chaos. Apparently, the sale brought in all the Ross and Wal-Mart shoppers, because they threw everything on the floor when they were done.

The chaos made it hard to find shoes, because the boxes on the shelves had little to do with the sample shoes nearby. It also looks like the tennis shoes of a year or two ago were going heavy on nauseating colors because I opened some boxes to see what they had and found florescent orange, puke yellow, red-white-and-blue, and other grotesqueries. (A few all red shoes actually caught my fancy, but not my size.)

I spoke with an older gentleman when I was there. He kept talking about how kids-these-days were ruining old fashioned retailers by buying everything on Amazon. And he could get shoes cheaper here! He told me a few times how his daughter had gotten him shoes for $70 off Amazon and they were $50 at DB Shoes. I agreed that sounded pretty dumb (and stereotypically lazy Millenial). But I said I really didn't know how you buy shoes online because the sizing is so inconsistent. He agreed with that too.

It's often hard to figure out the price at DB Shoes because they have marked prices, then marked discounts. It was even harder last night because there were multiple levels of marked discounts, and it was obvious many discount signs had gone missing and many shoes had moved. I finally found a pair that fit well and I liked, but it was marked $110. That felt like a no-go, even if the nearby 40% off sign was correct, but I brought them up to the register to check, and they were actually $40. Good enough.

I actually wanted to stock up with more pairs, both because of the sale prices and because I don't know where my next shoes will come from. But I couldn't find another acceptable pair in the whole store even with a fair amount of looking.

Farewell, DB Shoes. We sorta knew ye.

September 2017

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