Netflix’s Locke & Key (SPOILERS!!!)

So I know it’s been nearly a year since I’ve posted anything.  I’m sorry.  I’m sure you’ve been pining away wondering what happened to me.  I took a break.  Not that posting these blogs was super stressful, but whatever.  Anyway, I’m back, and plan on posting more often than once a year, but less than every day.

What brought me back is the new show on Netflix called Locke and Key.  I AM SUCKED INTO THIS SHOW.  This post will be full of spoilers so if you haven’t seen it, or intend to watch it, stop reading now.  Seriously, I take no responsibility for ruining it for you if you keep reading.  I’m watching it with my girlfriend and am only allowed to watch it with her, which means my mind is running wild waiting until the next time we can watch an episode.  WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN NEXT!?

First off, the premise is cool.  After their father Rendell was murdered, the family moves into his  ancestral home named “Key House.”  The three children (Tyler, Kinsey, & Bode) quickly discover the house is full of magic keys that do all kinds of crazy things.  I’m half way through the season (5/10 episodes), and will list the keys we’ve learned about shortly.  So far, one of the keys appears to be entirely beneficial, one of the keys seems to be completely malicious, and the rest have their pros and cons.  The keys want to be found, and whisper to the Locke children who inevitably discover them.  Their mom, we quickly learn, seems to immediately forget her experiences with the keys.

BUT WATCH OUT FOR THE WELL-LADY!  Bode, the youngest son strikes up a conversation with a super-creepy lady at the bottom of a well on the other side of a locked door (he slips through the gate) and is promptly tricked into giving her one of the magic keys.  She is not nice, and kills all kinds of people.  She wants the keys, and will do whatever she can to get them.

The Keys (so far):

  1. Travel Key – Think of a place you want to go, unlock a door and you’re there!  It has to be someplace you’ve already seen.
  2. Mirror Key – This is another dimension where you can trap your enemies.
  3. Music Box Key – This unlocks a music box you can use to control people like puppets.
  4. Fire Key – It sets fires.  Big ones and small ones.  I saw a guy jam it into his chest.  It looks like it hurt.
  5. Head Key – Use this to get inside your head!  Explore memories, confront your emotions, add knowledge.  I’m going to speculate more on this below.
  6. Ghost Key – Turn into a ghost and fly around.  You can’t interact with the living, but you CAN with at least one dead person.
  7. Face-Changing Key – They haven’t found this key yet, but just learned of it’s existence.  You can use it to change the way you look.
  8. Memory Key (Tree Key) – They unlocked their uncle Duncan’s memories which were buried in jars near an old tree.  One of these memories is where they learned about the Face-changing key.  Duncan doesn’t remember any of this.
  9. Ellie’s Key – I don’t know what this does yet.  Ellie is an old friend of the family and she has this key and used it to unlock the well-house gate.  I speculate that it’s some kind of skeleton key.

I think that’s all we have so far.  Right now Well-Lady has the travel key and the fire key.  It’s important to note that she can’t TAKE the keys from one of the Locke family; they have to voluntarily give them to her.  She’s coordinating with the high-school-age-kid who killed the Locke family’s father.

Okay, that’s enough background.  Here’s what’s been rattling around in my head while I wait to continue the series.

  1. How did Duncan’t memories get buried by the tree?  I have three theories. First, maybe they can use the memory key itself to remove memories from someone? Second, there could be another key that does that.  Third, and most likely, I believe you can use the Head Key to take a memory out of someone’s head.  This is the most likely, as we already know you can add knowledge to your head by tossing in a book, or remove unwanted emotions like fear.
  2. Why did the friend kill himself with the fire key after learning of Rendell’s murder?  He gets a phone call, learns of the death, and promptly jams the fire-key into his chest.  So far there’s no explanation why.  This one’s bugging me.
  3. How is Well-Lady using the travel key to get around?  Presumably she’s been trapped in the well.  You can only use the key to travel to a door you’ve already seen, which means she must have seen all these doors before?  Unless I misunderstood her (or she lied), and you really can use it to go anywhere there IS a door, regardless of whether you’ve seen it or not.
  4. What was the headmaster hiding, and why was he killed?  It was clear he was more involved than he was letting on, but they haven’t explained it yet.  I’m dying to know.
  5. What was Ellie trying to find when she snuck into Key House?  Looking for more keys?  She went into the well-house and whispered into the well for her dead ex-boyfriend Lucas, but apparently that didn’t go anywhere.
  6. Why do all the old friends from the photograph have key-hole scars in their chests?  One guy killed himself using the fire key in there, but…?  Do you think the fire key can turn you into fire but keep you alive?  Is there another key we haven’t discovered that goes in your chest?

Okay, I’m sure there’s more but that’s all I can think of right now.  I won’t get to watch another episode until Tuesday evening, so I’ll have to wait to find out these answers.

PLEASE DON’T POST SPOILERS IN THE COMMENTS!  I’ll find everything out eventually, and don’t want anything to ruin the suspense.  If you noticed interesting things in the first 5 episodes feel free to mention them.  As always, thanks for reading!

Serve over ice and enjoy,

Humble Dave

Sometimes It’s The Little Things

Every Thursday I pick up a free copy of the San Diego Reader.  No, it’s not for the marijuana ads in the back (which were all for escort services before pot was legalized!).  No, it’s not for the articles (which are actually pretty informative and entertaining).  And no, it’s not for the Suduku (Sudoku?  Sodoku?  Sdojdskwou?).

It’s for the crossword puzzle.  And if you’re a Reader fan, you know that although it’s nice they have a puzzle every week, it’s no NYT puzzle.  They often have answers in foreign languages (mostly spanish or french).  They do a lot of abbreviating (which always seems like cheating to me). HOWEVER, it’s free, they do it every week, and it’s always fun.  On top of that, they also make it a contest and the first handful of people who submit a completed puzzle win a hat or t-shirt (no, I’ve never won).

But none of that is why I like it.  Every Thursday I pick up the reader, take a picture of the crossword, and send it to my Mom in CT (I’m here in CA).  And each week we each do the puzzle then come together the following Wednesday, put our heads together and share the answers to see what we each missed.  It’s one of my favorite things to do each week (the first is volunteering at the library, so I’ll have to write about that one day too).

Today is Wednesday.  That means that I’m scrambling to finish off the clues that gave me the most trouble all week long before Mom and I trade answers this evening.  I’ll get a few more, but probably won’t finish it (I usually don’t, and have 3 or 4 answers missing at the end).  Ironically, it’s significantly MORE fun when I don’t finish it, because then we have answers to trade!

Dave: “I missed #27 down, what do you have for that?”
Mom: “I have Kerfluffle, that was a toughie!  What did you get for 42 across?”
Dave: “Kerfluffle, of course!  I had Fractals for 42 across.”
Mom: “FRACTALS!  DUH!  I had Antidisestablishmentarianism for 11 down, but I don’t think that’s right.”
Dave: “I had Aneurism, but I’m pretty sure I misspelled it and it also doesn’t fit so *shrug*.

See?  That’s lots of fun!  Otherwise the conversation goes like this:

Dave: “I finished it.”
Mom: “Me too.”
Dave: “Neat.”

And there you have it.  BOOOOOOOOORRRRRRRRIIIIIINNNNNGGGGGG.  But that’s okay.  Because (to bring us back around here), it’s the little things that count.  I tend to focus on them more than the big things, and it’s been bringing me down lately.  You can’t read anything online without seeing 50 things that are frustrating or depressing.  When out and about it’s easy to get upset about that jerk who cut you off or didn’t use their blinkers (#$%@#$%!), the elderly lady taking what seems like an eternity to put her groceries on the conveyer and then wants to pay by check (GROAN), or the fact that you dropped your keys on the ground when trying to unlock your front door (THE WORLD IS ENDING!  AAAAHHHH!).

The point is, the small negative things drive us crazy, but we ignore the small positive things.  So, I’ve been making an effort to identify and enjoy the little things.  Each week I’m going to try and identify one small thing that made me smile.  I’m also going to share one small change I made in my life to build in automatic smiles, like cross-country-crosswording with Mom (Love you!).  Next week, socks!

As always, thanks for reading and you’re welcome!

Living the Dream,

Humble Dave

The Greatest Book Ever Written

It’s always nice when I can write about a topic that has absolutely no controversy.  Some things are just so obvious and universal that just about everyone agrees.  And I think it’s a given that the best book ever written was Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy.

HGG cover

First off, the overall theme of the book is something to which we can all subscribe:


What great advice!  Don’t panic!  Does this amazing literary behemoth offer any other wisdom we can put into practice immediately?  Why yes it does!

“In the beginning, the Universe was created.  This made a lot of people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move.”

“Q: What to do if you find yourself stuck with no hope of rescue?
A: Consider yourself lucky that life has been good to you so far.  Alternatively, if life hasn’t been good to you so far, which given your current circumstances seems to be more likely, consider yourself lucky that it won’t be troubling you for much longer.”

“Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made president should on no account be allowed to do the job.”

“There is an art to flying, or rather a knack.  The knack consists of being able to throw yourself at the ground, and miss.”

And of course:

“A towel, [The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy] says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. Partly it has great practical value. You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapors; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a miniraft down the slow heavy River Moth; wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (such a mind-boggingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can’t see it, it can’t see you); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.”

So stay hoopy, you bunch of froods.  The answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe, and Everything is decisively Forty-Two.  All we need to do is figure out the question and we’ll be all set!

As always, thanks for reading and you’re welcome!

Living the Dream,

Humble Dave

The Quick Brown Fox Jumps Over The Lazy Dog

I have five “drafts” of blog posts pending right now.  The natural question following this statement could easily be, “Why aren’t you writing one of them instead of this nonsense?”  There’s an easy answer for that question, but I’ll be damned if I know it.

You see, I mostly write stream of consciousness style.  That means words fall right out of my head and onto the keys.  Sometimes they’re interesting, sometimes they’re clever, often they’re varying degrees of “why bother,” but they’re always honest.  My honest words, from honest thoughts.  When I write, I’m not “making up stories.”  I’m sharing a brief view into my head.  A brief, carefully filtered, view inside my head.  Unfiltered Dave is a more acquired taste, and you poor souls only get a small does of me when I’m motivated to write.

Still, you’ve received some gems over the years, that’s for sure.  The Way of Jello was pure gold (or pure jello!).  This post about idiot companies being stupid was a personal favorite.  I really appreciated the opportunity to call out the excellent service I received from Sharp Memorial Hospital before, during, and after my surgery last year.  And how could we forget my first post, back when this blog was primarily focused on reviewing products I bought on Amazon (PS I still love my inflatable lounger!)?

The point is, I have no idea if I was trying to make point.  That’s what this blog is all about.  Wandering through my mind in a semi-coherent way, stopping to look at any interesting sights along the way.  No, they won’t all be interesting to you.  No, for the most part there’s no coherent theme or order in which they’re presented.  And no…

I stopped here to check an email, and now I have no idea what I was talking about.

So anyway, no anything.  But there’s a lot yesses (yeses?  yeahs? Yarps, if you’re a Hot Fuzz fan) too!  Yes, I find all my posts interesting!  Yes, some of them will make a point accidentally, and some even on purpose.  Yes, I’m usually smiling when I’m writing, and hopefully that cheer comes through on the page.  Yes, I know most of you are reading this on a screen, but I’m allowed to call it a page because it’s my world and I rule here.

Maybe that’s what I like best about it.  For me, this is an extremely low pressure environment.  I had 5 ideas for blog posts and put them into drafts so I wouldn’t forget.  But today, now, I have no interest in writing about them. I COULD force myself to do it, but that would be stressful.  They are ideas that are obviously not ripe yet.  So they have to sit and wait for me to be in the right mood (the WRITE mood!  So punny) to ponder them.  They need to percolate.  But the fun bit, are you paying attention?  I’m coming to the fun bit.  The fun bit, however, is not writing about something that came to me yesterday, or 2+ days ago.  The fun bit is putting my fingers on the keyboard and watching what falls out of my head.  For me, THAT’S to fun of this blog.

I hope it’s fun for you, too!  As always, thanks for reading and you’re welcome!

Living the dream,

Humble Dave

P.S.  If any employers are reading this and are thinking about hiring me for a writing job, but are concerned I won’t be interested because it may not be fun:  MAKE ME AN OFFER!  I would LOVE to write for a living, and will happily trade my writing time for money and health insurance.  And if in turn I receive power and fame I promise to only use them for good.

Keep Your Hands to Yourself

Throughout my childhood, I probably heard this phrase more often than any other.  I was a very “hands-on” child.  If there was a switch I would flip it.  A button had to be pushed.  Levers needed to be… levered?  EVERYTHING needed to be touched.  So.. “Keep your hands to yourself” was bandied about by my parents with reckless abandon.  In their defense, I have a short attention span, so repetition gives you the best chance of getting something through to me.

That being said, I managed to make it to adulthood without breaking anything irreplaceable (that I’m aware of), or experiencing any sexual harassment lawsuits.  I also haven’t accidentally launched any nuclear missiles, although I have launched rockets.  I have accidentally turned off the power to things for which power was important.  C’est la vie, right?

The only thing I heard more often than “Keep your hands to yourself” (KYHTY) was in the same vein.  “Put your hands in your pockets” (PYHIYP).  Although usually it went like this…

hands in pockets

*I reach out to touch something.*

Parents: “Keep your hands to yourself!”

Me: “Okay.”

Parents: “Put your hands in your pockets.”

Me:  ——————————————————————————->

Also, that’s not me.  That’s just a random internet person I found. You know, just because full disclosure and all.

Anyway, the reason I was thinking about this was because for 20 solid years I heard this CONSTANTLY.  Keep your hands to yourself.  Put your hands in your pockets.  Keep your hands to yourself.  Put your hands in your pockets.  Keep your hands to yourself.  Put your hands in your pockets.  Over. And over. And over. Again.

Now PLEASE don’t think I’m knocking my parents.  I NEEDED this level of repetition if this action was something you wanted to program me to do.  And most importantly, IT WORKED.  I mostly kept my hands in my pockets, and over the years pushed fewer things.  If I remember my psychology at all, this was classical conditioning at its finest.

However… sometime around age 20 I was working in my Dad’s print shop helping customers.  Standing there, hands in pockets, talking to a customer, I felt a tap on my shoulder.  OH NO!  THE BIG BOSS (aka Dad).  He said, “Take your hands out of your pockets while talking to customers.  It’s unprofessional.”

What the heck?  Do what? After 20 years of being told to stuff ’em in my pockets, all of the sudden, NOW, with no prior warning, I’m supposed to take them out again?  WHAT IF I PUSH SOMETHING?  Nope.  Apparently that’s not a concern anymore. Life is weird.  When I commented on the rule change to my father there was a brief moment when I could see the gears spinning and then he started laughing.  Good times.

So anyway, I learned a couple of things that day.  1) Consistency is apparently a secondary consideration in parenting, and 2) I keep my hands in my pockets everywhere except at work, because it’s unprofessional.

Anyway, I’m still fairly curious about that will happen if I touch this or that, and for the most part am able to resist the urge (thanks Mom and Dad!).  I do occasionally touch the thing, but they also taught me to take responsibility for my actions (thanks again!) so you know.  Karma evens out I guess?

God only knows what they would have done if I’d been a girl.  How do you all deal with pants that have no pockets?  Or even worse, fake pockets?  What sick individual came up with that idea?  Someone who hates people, that’s for sure.


Welp, my work here is done.  As always, thanks for reading, and you’re welcome!

Living the dream,

Humble Dave


I love puzzles!  Jigsaw puzzles are fun but are mostly an exercise in patience.  Except for this jigsaw called One Tough Puzzle.  Wow.  It’s only 9 pieces.  There are no edge pieces, so all 9 pieces have 4 usable sides.  According to the box there are over 300,000 ways to align them incorrectly, but ONLY 1 WAY TO DO IT RIGHT!

Just for fun, I crunched a few numbers on this one.  If you average 10 seconds each time you do the puzzle, and you’re supremely unlucky thereby finishing it on the 300,000th try, you spent a little over 833 hours on these 9 puzzle pieces.  THAT’S OVER 1 MONTH of steady puzzling, nonstop.  No eating, sleeping, bathroom breaks, etc.  Also assuming you average 10 seconds per attempt, and really that would be nearly impossible.  20 seconds makes it closer to 2 1/3 months of constant work.


My mom finished it.  Of course she did.  She’s amazing.  The rest of us ordinary people just have to do the best we can.  I’ve had this thing for YEARS and still haven’t gotten it.

So, the moral of this story is puzzles suck, but are also kinda awesome.  I recommend you buy this for a friend or family member who loves puzzles.  You can also buy it for a friend or family member you hate.  I won’t judge.

Stupid puzzle.

As always, thanks for reading, and you’re welcome!

Living the dream,

Humble Dave.

P.S. Stupid puzzle.

Words On A Page

I know, I know, it’s been a while.  You’ve missed me.  “Where are Dave’s entertaining blogs,” you’ve asked?  “Why hasn’t he been amusing me like the trained monkey that he is?”

Haven’t been in the mood.  I have had (and am having) a tumultuous few months.  And not in a good way.  Wild changes in all aspects of my life whose repercussions have yet to be fully felt.  New career with no financial security, living arrangements in flux, HUGE life changes, continued pain and physical limitations following my neck surgery, and death of a very close family member are just what immediately come to mind.

But people keep telling me to write another blog, so here it is.  A bunch of words on a page.  Really, a screen.  Unless you print all my blogs out before you read them.  Do you do that?  That would be strange.  I periodically hear stories of people’s grandparents who find interesting articles on the internet, print them out and then mail them to their grandkids.  So it’s not completely outside the realm of possibility.

Anyway, words on a page.  Still not really feeling it.  Deedle-dee.  It’s hot outside.  It’s also hot inside.  I have a list of to-do’s and instead of doing the big things on it that stress me out I’ve been doing the little things that are easy.  Makes me feel like I’m accomplishing something even though really I’m not doing the things that are important.  Shoot, writing this wasn’t even on the list, that’s how far down my priorities this is right now.  But I happened to have the laptop on my lap, so this is what you get.  Words on a page.

I watched Ready Player One on the airplane yesterday.  It was mediocre.  Read the book instead.  I also watched Rampage.  It was better than I expected but… come on.  It’s a nearly 2 hour long movie based on a video game in the ’80’s where you played a giant monster and smashed buildings down.  Hollywood is really reaching these days.  What’s next, Centipede?  Pew Pew!

The gentleman sitting next to me on the plane was editing some restaurant menus.  The girl sitting next to him, whom he didn’t know prior to the trip, had a tattoo on her right wrist of a fork and spoon.  That was weird.

I’m playing a new game on my phone called “”.  You control a small hole that gets bigger by eating parts of a city.  The bigger you get, the more you can eat.  Each game is 2 minutes long.  You can play against other people online, against others locally via bluetooth, or by yourself.  It’s a fun time-killer.  Check it out.

Oh, Jetblue has a new class of seats called, “Mint.”  They look neat.  No, I didn’t get to sit in them.

Anyways, I’m pretty much done with the words on this page.  I’m not editing or adding any pictures.  Serve over ice and enjoy.

-Humble Dave

It’s My Birthday

Happy birthday to me. I’m 42 this year, and if you’re a fan of Douglas Adams and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy you know the number 42 has special significance.

If you’re unfamiliar, the number 42, after extremely careful study, consideration, and calculation, was determined to be the answer to the Ultimate Question is Life, the Universe, and Everything. Unfortunately, the question still eludes us. The answer is decisively 42, though.

Perhaps I’ll learn it this year. I’ll keep my towel handy, just in case. Take it easy you hoopy froods!

Living The Dream,

Humble Dave

Stupid Companies Doing Stupid Things Stupidly: Ford Automotive

Sigh.  I like my car.  Honestly I do.  It’s a 2013 Ford Escape.  Silver.  Titanium Package, which means we got the wave-your-foot-under-the-tailgate-and-it-opens package.  There’s adjustable mood lighting on the inside.  I’m not joking.  We can pick from something like half-a-dozen colors and adjust the brightness.  It’s remarkably awesome.  It has a nice long sunroof.  The car will parallel park itself.  We love that feature.  It does a GREAT job at it, too.  It’s comfortable.  Are you picking up what I’m laying down?  We like it.

It also has built in navigation.  I’ve always liked having navigation in my car.  It’s convenient.  There’s a nice big screen and it tells me where to go with a polite, yet confident and direct female voice explaining how even though I thought I was supposed to make a right turn, what I actually wanted was a left turn, assuming of course I intended to go to the destination I preselected.

However as we all know, new roads get built.  Occasionally, old roads get closed.  On-ramps and off-ramps get moved.  Lanes are widened and additional lanes are added.  So obviously the navigation maps need updating.

Does Ford do this automatically and wirelessly for you?  No.  Do they mail you a card/CD/USB stick annually so you can do it yourself?  No.  Do you have to take the car into the dealership for the update?  Also No.

Ford Navi updateThey send you an email offering you an SD card with updated maps for $149.  AND THEY OFFER AN UPDATED MAP CARD EVERY YEAR.  That’s right.  Ford apparently feels that users should pay an extra $149/year for updates THAT EVERY OTHER NAVIGATION SYSTEM OFFERS FOR FREE.  Forget google maps for a second (which is arguably the best navigation/map service ever devised).  You could BUY A GARMIN for less and get free updates for life.


I literally just can’t even.  I just can’t.  I smell burnt toast, AND IT’S YOUR FAULT, FORD!

Oh, wait.  Nevermind.  Look at all the perks:

Ford navi info

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. No.  I’m not going to spend any time countering the above bullets, because they’re all stupid.  I use Google Maps/Navigation.  It gets me where I want to go, and updates every second.  Traffic, accidents, route-changes, multiple route options, whatevers.  There’s literally nothing Ford can to to their navigation that makes it better than Maps.

Dear Ford, if you’re reading this make the navigation updates free.  Better yet, integrate Google Maps into your car’s navigation systems and sell advertising to gas stations, restaurants, etc.

Dear Readers, if you’re paying any money for navigation updates in your car, STOP DOING THAT RIGHT NOW.  Drop a smartphone up on your dash and upgrade your life experience immediately.

As always, thanks for reading, and you’re welcome.

Living the Dream,
Humble Dave