(1) Microsoft Zune 30GB Digital Media Player White JS8-00002
Description: (click show to see it)
I'll never forget the day the Hipster putted into town. I can still see his maroon Vespa wheeling around the town square and pulling up outside The Grounds Floor Coffeehouse like it was earlier today. Matter of fact, it was earlier today. Black frame glasses beneath a sculpted bed-head, with an ITALY zipper jersey and retro Adidas: seems that's what the girls around here go for. Female heads turned all over the Grounds Floor, or so the story goes.
See, I wasn't there. I was next door minding the feed store. But everybody in town knows the tale by now. We've all heard about how Tom and Maureen Fleischenschwetzer's girl, that Becky Fleischenschwetzer, sat down a few feet away from him and fired up her laptop. The Grounds Floor's wi-fi was running a little slow that day, but Becky was never the kind of girl to give up too easy. She navigated to the Apple store and conspicuously browsed the iPods, hoping to catch the stranger's eye. And so she did.
"Excuse me," the Hipster said, looking up from his David Foster Wallace essay collection and pulling his earbuds out of his ears. "But you're about to make a terrible mistake."
Becky was shocked - had she blown it already? By shopping for an iPod, had she given herself away as a small-town rube? But then what was he listening to on those white earbuds? Had big-city folk invented some new kind of audio entertainment that wasn't music or talking? She had so much to learn about the world.
The Hipster stood over her and gently guided her hand on the touchpad. Together, wordlessly, they found a peculiarly-named web site selling a peculiarly-named device called a Zune. Becky didn't much care for the site's ugly orange-and-green colors, or the long-winded, unfunny sales copy. But as she browsed the specs, she realized that the Zune was the player she needed. A 30GB hard drive, a 3" color screen bigger than the iPod Video's, and $50-$100 cheaper than everywhere else.
As she reached for Tom Fleischenschwetzer's Visa, she realized something: the Hipster's hand was no longer on hers. He was gone. His caramocha latte, his DFW book, his shoulder bag: gone. She ran outside to find the Vespa nowhere in sight. Somehow, nobody'd seen him go. Nobody knew where he went. And Becky, well, she never got to thank him.
Warranty: One year
30GB hard drive stores up to 7,500 songs, 25,000 pictures or 100 hours of video (128 Kbps)
3" bright color LCD display can be customized with your photos for a personalized appearance
Resolution 320×240, vertical or horizontal orientation
Ultracompact player measures just 0.6" thin and weighs 5 oz.
Supports MP3, WMA and ACC audio formats, displays JPEG image formats plus displays WMV, MPEG-4 and H.264 video formats
Built-in FM tuner with RBDS broadcast signal support to display artist and track title
Equalizer for a customized listening experience
USB 2.0 interface for fast transfer speeds
Zune-to-Zune sharing allows you to use a built-in 802.11b/g wireless interface to share tracks, homemade recordings, playlists and pictures with other Zune users; received tracks expire after you have listened 3 times or 3 days
Flag shared tracks you like for easy downloading later with your Zune Pass (subscription required) in the Zune Marketplace
Up to 14 hours battery life with the built-in lithium-ion battery
Compatible with Windows only - big surprise
Dimensions: 4.4×2.4×0.6 (HxWxD)
Weight: 5.6 ounces
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Brake lights in front of you. Hit your brakes. Hope the guy behind you notices. Orange flashing arrow. LANE ENDS. Wait. Wait. Morning Zoo fart jokes. Wait. An opening! Sneak in. Wait! Swerve away. Didn't see that guy. Could've died. Traffic moves. Traffic slows. Traffic stops. Brake again. Why? What's going on up there? You'll never know. Off-ramp. Can you beat the yellow? Looks like it. Looks like it. Come on. Wait! Brake lights in front of you. Slam on your brakes. Scalding drips of coffee on your office pants. Sitting at red, wet and hot. Maybe it's time to start riding the bus.
This shirt was designed by: Nick Mathis, a Dallas native who's moving to New York, where he can take the train to work. <a href="mailto:NMathis18@hotmail.com">Email him</a> for more.
Wear this shirt to: remind your fellow commuters that one day they, too, will be little more than bones.
Don't wear this shirt to: your babysitting job.
This shirt tells the world: "I feel like my skull is, like, a sketchy drawing, pierced by straight lines from all directions, and overlaid several times in varying opacities."
(2) C&T Cellars 2005 Rooftop Red Cabernet Sauvignon
(2) C&T Cellars 2006 Skinny Dip Sauvignon Blanc
Description: (click show to see it)
Dearest Martha -
We hauled in our biggest catch yet
today. As the cod flopped around on deck in their hordes, one stared up
at me with baleful silver eyes, struggling for breath yet somehow at
peace. I even detected a flash of sardonic wit somewhere behind its
mask of fishy complacency. It reminded me of you.
lately, everything reminds me of something back home in Napa. Remember
those bottles of C&T Cellars wine I brought along, to pass the long
lonely hours trawling the rugged Alaska seacoast? Oh, wait, that's
right: I took them without telling you. Sorry. Consider it payback for
that time you ate my last Toaster Streudel. Anyway, each bottle has
been a treasured companion as I seek my fortune at sea. With each sip,
I could practically see young Trent Moffett pounding out the vintage,
just like his folks taught him at Livingston Moffett. Good lad, that
one. He's got a good woman in Colleen, too. They'll go far.
popped open the first bottle of C&T Cellars 2005 Rooftop Red Cabernet
Sauvignon at sunrise, before a hard day's fish. (You'll recall that the
ability to drink wine while working was the main reason I took this
fishing job.) Its deep, dark fruit and spice aromas danced with the
last evanescent ghosts of the vanishing night, while the big, juicy
mouth of ripe blackberries and black cherries harmonized perfectly with
the flinty Northern dawn. Didn't do much for my chronic seasickness,
though. I suppose we none of us ever really own the things we consume -
we just rent them.
The other bottle of Rooftop Red was the
subject of heated contention one late night below decks. The salty old
seahands and I were gathered around the barrel for the nightly game of
Slapjack. Cappy, short of funds, threw one of his prized bronze
water-wings into the pot. Well, Chappy (different guy) had also opened
his pay envelope to the good-time girls of Juneau, and was similarly
skint of liquid funds. So he anted up a 1974 Topps Tom Hilgendorf in NM
condition. All I had close to hand was that second bottle of Rooftop
Red, with its well-balanced fruit and long finish. Slow to slap, I lost
the hand, and the bottle. But fortune smiled the next day when both
Chappy and Cappy were lost overboard in the face of a savage
nor'easter. Yes, I reclaimed my Rooftop Red. Dead men drink no wine.
But I tipped a little out for them.
An altogether different
mood surrounded my first bottle of C&T Cellars 2006 Skinny Dip
Sauvignon Blanc. Bounding along the frothy main, the catch plentiful,
the sun grinning stonedly down upon us, we passed around the bottle
like the buccaneers' grog of yore. Bright and acidic without burning a
hole in your gut, its well-structured, citrusy palate was sunshine in a
bottle. We sang like the Village People, in lusty praise of this divine
nectar. Then Clappy (different guy again) took inspiration from both
its name and its mood-altering powers, and stripped down to the skin
for a mid-day swim! Caught in the merriment of the mood, we all freed
ourselves from the bonds of our clothing and jumped in. In retrospect,
it was actually pretty gross, all those nude fishermen splashing
around. But what did we care on that glorious afternoon?
don't remember much about the other bottle of Skinny Dip. I downed the
whole thing in two or three swigs after a fishhook lodged itself in my
eye. It's a good thing I was born with two.
Aye, it's a
rough life out here among the whitecaps, and the battle with Demon Cod
never ceases. But those four bottles of C&T Cellars wine tethered
my heart and my tongue to sweet home Napa. To be sure, I ache with
longing for you; but even more so for more C&T Cellars. Don't take
it personally, my darling. If you'd ever had to make do with Alaskan
wine, you'd understand.
C&T Cellars 2005 Rooftop Red Cabernet Sauvignon
Harvest Date: October 4th - 19th
Blend: 75 % Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Merlot and 9% Cabernet Franc