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February 10, 2012

Wow, it feels like I blinked and two months flew by. I've found that the older I get, the faster time seems to move. It's rather disconcerting, but as always, time waits for no man and the clock only moves in one direction.

Today I went to the Verizon store in Smyrna to buy the new Droid 4 phone that came out literally today. I had anticipated the potential of a customer rush when they opened, so I took my time, stopping first at Chick-Fil-A for breakfast. I'm not sure if their "Free Coffee Friday" promotion is a nationwide thing or just something local to the Nashville area, but it was great for me, cutting about 33% out of the cost of my order with a $1.65 discount on an order than came to $3.20 before tax for a spicy chicken biscuit combo.

At about 9:45 I made my way into the Verizon store, and there was no mad rush of people there. In contrast, there were multiple sales associates there ready to help, and I was able to upgrade to a Droid 4 about as quickly as I could have hoped for the process to take.

I'm hardly a "tech guy", though I do have an appreciation for cutting-edge electronics. So far the Droid 4 has been great to use, with an outstanding QWERTY slide-out keyboard that is much easier to use than the keyboard on my last phone, the original Droid. Once I learn to stop hitting the "Tab" button when I am wanting to select the "A" key, I'll be set.

To test it out, I logged into Netflix and picked out Die Hard, one of my all-time favorite action movies. The 4G LTE speed held up remarkably well, with it not cutting out or taking a long time to buffer. Luckily I am grandfathered in on Verizon's unlimited data plan, which means I don't have to worry about going over any arbitrary data limits. In the past I would say that I hardly qualified as a bandwidth hog, but now? We'll see how it goes.

For some people, the end of the Super Bowl means the end of the NFL until training camp. But not for me -- my busy season has begun with Draft King, with the 2012 NFL Draft a little more than two months away. Most of my writing efforts have been concentrated on that site, and there is a significant amount of research that must be done to keep up to speed on the hundreds of players in the mix and the 32 teams in the league. The volume of NFL mock draft sites has skyrocketed since I launched Draft King in 2003, though my venture into that business happened by accident when I made a 2003 mock draft on this site which drew in a huge volume of readers, enough to motivate me to create a separate site that has grown to the point of being my flagship website.

As I noted recently on Draft King, I applied for credentials to cover the 2012 NFL Combine in Indianapolis and was turned down by the league, which noted that there was a large demand for them. Luckily for me the NFL Network covers basically everything from the combine, from weight/height information (which is often bumped up a bit by certain schools) to live broadcasts of the workouts. As it was, my Phi Kappa Tau fraternity brother Patrick, who I had planned to stay with, unfortunately didn't have room for me to stay at his place after all. Oh well.

Thanks to Netflix, I've managed to get my girlfriend Stacy hooked on the outstanding ABC show Lost. We've flown through the first season and moved into the second in a relatively short amount of time. I had to wait four months to find out what was inside that hatch, the cliffhanger at the end of season one. For Stacy it wasn't nearly the test of patience that it was for me in 2005; we finished season one on Wednesday and started on season two last night.

Meanwhile, literally as I type this, I hear the engine of the USPS mail truck outside of the house. It sounds like the Roku LT that I ordered has arrived, a $49 buy that will allow us to stream content via our internet connection. And, sure enough, I just heard the plunk of the postal worker delivering the box out front. Between that and the Droid 4, it's not a bad way to go into the weekend.

The plan is for the Roku to go upstairs, giving us access to all kinds of entertainment to enjoy while working out on the Precor machine. Short of being sick, exhausted or injured, it's hard to find an excuse to not work out with all of that available, which is a major plus. For years I've wanted a setup like that, and once the Roku is up and going, the final piece of the puzzle will be in place.

With that in mind, I have some work to do...

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