You're So Predictable

Usually, when I say this, it’s to the tune of the EMF song and in gentle mockery of my husband — after he’s said “I just bought us concert tickets,” or “Let’s have pizza for dinner!”  I like to think of myself as the spontaneous one.

But after having downloaded Google Chrome as my browser of preference, I am finding that it applies to me too. Its automatic home page for a new window or tab includes thumbnail screen shots of your most popular eight sites, and it’s rare that I need to go anywhere else.  Here they are:

  • Gmail: Still the best e-mail service out there, especially since I discovered you can stay signed in to multiple accounts simultaneously.  Since I have different addresses for work, home and junk, this is especially useful.
  • WordPress: I haven’t used SquareSpace enough to replace this one, but it will happen by the end of the week, I’m sure.  My new platform is much more snazzy, although we’re still getting used to each other.
  • Catonsville Patch: I’ve been writing more frequently here during the summer, mostly in a series called “From the Farm” in which I pick one item from the week’s CSA pickup and share recipe ideas.  “Delicious Dish” reincarnated?  Perhaps.
  • Google Voice: Your ticket to free unlimited text messages, phone calls through your computer and cell phone, and text-transcribed voicemail messages that never fail to make me laugh; I’m sure the software will improve over time, but for now “my towels and laundry” becomes “my pal the laundry” and “it’s Naomi” becomes “it’s mail me.”  When the message is in another language, it’s funnier still.
  • Google Reader: This list is beginning to sound like a commercial plug!  I resisted Reader for a long time, thinking it would make me more of a blog addict, but it’s actually made it faster and more efficient — I only see new posts and I only need to go to one place.  
  • The New York Times: After touting the clever loophole idea, I caved and bought a subscription for the summer — it’s half price for the first 12 weeks, and by the time the deal runs out, I’ll be too busy to read it anyway.  For now, I’m loving what I took for granted for so long: the ability to graze at will through all kinds of interesting material, even on my phone while waiting in a particularly boring line!
  • Flickr: Since this service became basically free for normal people, I’ve been using it to share photos quickly and easily.  It also dovetails nicely with a cute little app called Instagram (thanks, Jo) which can make ordinary photos look retro, scary or warm and fuzzy in — you guessed it — an instant.
  • Netflix: We’ve been exploring new material this summer — new to us, without a television or time to watch it during the school year, but old and dusty to the rest of the world.  We’re particularly taken with In Treatment for its simple compositions and plotlines that focus almost entirely on the psyche.  Next up are Mad Men and The Sopranos.  Alas, nothing so far has come close to the experience of LOST!

So that’s my online life, in a nutshell.  Isn’t it sad, how similar I am to millions of others on the planet?  One more reason to turn off the computer and go outside for awhile!