The Mystery of My “Disappearing” iPad

So a few weeks ago I made the decision to join my Dad and some other early adopters and ordered an iPad 3G. At the time, Apple (about whom I normally would have little negative to say) was predicting the shipping date for this product as “Late April.” Since the time of my order was “early April”, I was okay with that.

But you know how things are… As time progressed and early April turned to middle and then late (the 24th qualifies as late April, I think) I began to wonder on what day the order would actually ship. Rumors abound on the Net, but there didn’t seem to be anything official until Apple announced that orders had exceeded their capacity, they were delaying the International rollout, and people who ordered after April 19 would have their orders shipped “by May 7.” My first thought was, “Great! Since they know exactly when the NEXT batch of orders will be shipped, they should know when the FIRST batch will go out.”

After checking my order status (I’ll admit, repeatedly) over the past week, I see that the expected ship date remains “Late April.”

Hope sprung eternal on Monday, however, when I noticed that the charge for the order showed up in online banking. And, knowing Apple’s policy about charging for products when they ship (“Apple will not bill your credit card or process a transaction under your debit or check card until your order ships.”) I grew… well, expectant, is the best word I can think of. Surely this was a sign that things are moving forward…

On Tuesday, however, the charge remained “pending.” Same on Wednesday. And Thursday. And there it sat, pending — taunting — until it disappeared on Friday. Well, I’m an optimistic guy, most people would tell you that. So I took this odd occurrence with the thought that — maybe — it moved from pending so it could become a real live charge and I would shortly receive the shipping notification that would create a whole new level of anticipation.

Nada. Nothing. Ain’t gonna happen. I’ve read a few places that Apple expects me to have it on April 30, a few hours before they are released in local Apple Stores. But strangely, Apple hasn’t bothered to tell me that, either with an email, an automated phone message, a carrier pigeon, or by simply updating my order status to reflect this information.

On the other hand, I did get an unsolicited email from GM the other day telling me that they’ve paid back their loan (with interest) five years ahead of schedule. I have no idea how I got on their list.

Is bread pudding the new crème brûlée?

Two facts in the interest of full disclosure:

  1. I love crème brûlée
  2. Bread pudding, not so much.

That’s not entirely true. There are certain parts of bread pudding that I do like. Like the crunchy cinnamon-y bread-stuff on top. It’s the bread that’s been soaked long enough to taste like pudding that doesn’t do much for me. (Incidentally, if more bread pudding looked like it does in this photo, I’d eat it. At least the crunchy top part of it. Of course, that’s Austin Leslie’s Creole Bread Pudding with Vanilla Whiskey Sauce from Pampy’s Restaurant in New Orleans, so I expect it to look infinitely edible.)

But lately I’ve noticed that bread pudding keeps showing up on menus of places I’ve recently been for lunch. A lot. Now, I’m not certain if this is because I don’t often eat dessert, so I’m hardly ever looking at these menus, or, if I do want dessert, I would just get crème brûlée. (See 1., above.)

The fact remains that it has certainly made its way onto some menus; even menus outside of MCL, where I would certainly expect to see it:  Eddie Merlot’s has it. Bravo has bread pudding. Heck, even BD’s Mongolian BBQ has it. So someone must be ordering it. (The lady at Bravo told us today that they make it every day in anticipation of the orders. Today they made enough for 20 servings. I neglected to ask how much crème brûlée they had on hand.)

Look, according to Wikipedia, crème brûlée is a dessert of French origin consisting of a rich custard base topped with contrasting layer of caramel that is often crystalized by flame. Bread pudding, by contrast, was invented by some bored English baker looking for some way to use his stale bread. So he soaked it in some stuff overnight, squeezed it out in the morning, tossed in a pan and baked it.

I think they added whiskey just to get someone to eat it.

Recycle your holiday cards and help St. Jude’s Ranch

This is a great idea; something we can all do to help that doesn’t require a lot of time, effort, or investment. (Thanks for the heads up, Nadine!)

You can recycle this year’s Christmas cards and help out some kids at the same time. The St. Jude’s Ranch is a home for abused and neglected children. To raise money for the home, the children turn the fronts of used greeting cards (Christmas, Hanukah, birthdays, anniversary, etc.) into new greeting cards which they sell.

So instead of tossing the cards you’ve received, send them on to the ranch. (I’m just sending the fronts…easier to mail, less postage. You’ll be contributing to a worthy charity and saving a few trees to boot.

Here’s the address or you can check out their website

They are accepting used, all-occasion cards from thru February 28, 2010

Mail donations to:

St. Jude’s Ranch for Children
Recycled Card Program
100 St. Jude’s Street
Boulder City, NV 89005
877-977-SJRC (7572)

Steve Jobs has a "little talk" with AT&T

It’s no secret that I love my iPhone just a little more than my puppy and (slightly) less than my children. But from the very first day I turned it on, I have been dismayed by AT&T’s network. To say that it sucks would probably be giving them too much credit. Anyway, their network woes aren’t a secret to anyone either, and one of their bigwigs recently announced at a conference that they (the other bigwigs at AT&T) were dreaming up ways to coerce dis-incentivize penalize… Good Lord, I can’t think of the right word… Anyway, they’re trying to find ways to make their customers use their network less, instead of trying to just fix the damn thing to begin with.

So, Steve Jobs (well, actually, Fake Steve Jobs) got on the horn and had a little chat with them to attempt to coerce dis-incentivize penalize convince them to follow a different course.

Here’s a recap of what happened.

College Teams to Honor Vets With Camo Uniforms

Sometimes stories just make me smile. This morning I read that the college football teams of Maryland and South Carolina will don camouflage uniforms when they play on Saturday, November 14. The idea is to honor vets and raise awareness of the Wounded Warrior Project, which acts as an advocate for injured service men and women in Washington and provides services and programs for them. I’m all for it. And, apparently, so are the players.

“Ooooh,” South Carolina defensive tackle Ladi Ajiboye said Tuesday after seeing the camouflage cleats the Gamecocks will wear. “I could wear these the whole season.”

The black with tan camouflage uniforms, designed by Under Armour, will have a Wounded Warrior logo on them. Instead of players’ names, the backs of the jerseys will have words such as courage, loyalty, integrity and service.

The effort should pay off. The 23rd-ranked Gamecocks play No. 2 Florida that day, and Maryland faces No. 15 Virginia Tech, so viewership should be pretty high.

[Read more about the Wounded Warrior Project]
[Shop for Under Armour/Wounded Warrior Gear]
[Read more about the uniforms]