Monday, June 29, 2009

Great Harvest Bread

From the category "Retail Experiences that Really Deliver", I highly recommend the Great Harvest Bakery. They deliver on their promise of great, freshly baked bread, they have free samples in the stores, and are knowledgeable about the ingredients. And, the "Guiness & Gouda" bread is fantastic.

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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Drain auger - or, the benefits of curiosity

If you're analyzing a web campaign, or trying to get a clogged shower drain open, there are some significant benefits to curiosity. Last night, I attempted to solve the mystery of our slowly draining tub.

At first, it appeared that plunging the tub would take care of things. However, nothing changed. I called Aaron, a friend of mine who's a plumber. With great patience, he explained that there's usually an overflow vent and I would need to plug that, in order to seal up the system, so that air from the plunger would go down the system, rather than being vented.

I then unscrewed the covering, located the overflow vent, and plugged it with a rag to create a seal. Plunging away, within a few minutes, I brought up a bunch of dirt into the tub. Feeling very successful, I continued. Trouble struck. I managed to suck the rag back down the overflow vent, out of reach of both needle nose pliers, and a hangar.

Aaron's next recommendation was for a drain auger. Fortunately, Home Depot was still open. A very helpful rep in the plumbing section pointed one out, along with recommendations on how to use it. Twenty minutes later, I had retrieved the rag, and mentally decided I was now only facing a normal plumbers visit, not one to repair the entire sewer system. After some additional experimentation with the auger, I had roughly 4 feet of cable in the system, and was unable to find a clog. The drain auger seemed to be working fine

At that point, curiosity took over. One of the sinks had been slow to drain, so I started filling them up, and letting them drain. Interestingly, more junk started to appear in the tub. I ran the auger down the sink, hit something, and suddenly everything started working. A couple of minutes of cleanup later, and the problem was solved :)

As I was cleaning up, I was noticing the similarities with online campaigns. Sometimes you keep trying tactics, and then you finally hit on one that solves your problem/ generates the response you need.

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