Free Stuff for My Birthday 2014 Edition

I sign up for as many loyalty programs and email newsletters as I can. And, around this time of year (my birthday), it really pays off. Here’s a list of the *free stuff I received this year simply for signing up for an email newsletter. If you’re not comfortable handing out your email address, it’s not hard to signup for a secondary email account, with as little actual personal information as possible. This way you keep your private while still reaping the benefits.

  • $10 certificate to Sports Authority
  • Free double steak  burger with cheese and a side of Fries at Steak N Shake with coupon
  • Free burger or chicken sandwich at Red Robin with coupon
  • Free Denny’s Grand Slam
  • Free medium Firehouse sub with proof of ID
  • Free regular Jersey Mike’s sub and drink with coupon

*’Free’ comes with stipulations sometimes, like a minimum purchase, or it can only be used on a specific date/time.

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Seinfeld Action Figures

I like action figures. Unlike some collectors, I don’t focus on just a single line, like Transformers or GI Joe. I tend to get a little of everything, from Transformers, to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Super Mario, Wall-E, Walking Dead, Back to the Future, Lego minifigures, Marvel and DC, the Muppets, and Ghostbusters, just to name a few. I’m also a huge Seinfeld fan. Since it’s been in syndication for decades, the number of times I’ve seen every episode is in the double digits. I thought it only made sense to combine two of my favorite things.

Seinfeld, the show about nothing, is a cultural icon. Many sitcoms show their age over time, but Seinfeld is still mostly timeless. And, with the number of characters that spanned the 180 episodes, it would not be difficult to create an action figure line based on those characters.

These are my ideas of a possible action figure line, broken down by season, which I would use as “waves”.

Season 1

  • Jerry
  • Elaine
  • George
  • Kramer
  • Helen Seinfeld
  • Morty Seinfeld (Phil Bruns)

Season 1 was a very short season, only 5 episodes. And, there weren’t any really memorable one-off characters from this season. So, I figured we should get the main cast out of the way. In the first season, Jerry’s father Morty was played by actor Phil Bruns. This was Phil’s only appearance as Morty in the show. He was replaced by Barney Martin in season 2.

Season 2

  • Alton Benes
  • The Chinese restaurant maître d’
  • Ray, the cleaning guy (with statue)
  • Uncle Leo
  • Jerry with suede jacket. Jacket could be water activated to show stains
  • Stained chocolate shirt George
  • Morty Seinfeld (Barney Martin)

Season 2 is another short season, albeit more than double the episodes of season 1. Still, the show hadn’t yet built the sable of characters we come to love. There are a couple of alternate styles for characters we’ve already seen in series 1, but for fans of the show, they should be some classic must haves.

Season 3

  • Jack Klompus (with space pen)
  • Naked subway guy
  • Newman (first appearance, while he can be heard in episode The Revenge in season 2)
  • Keith Hernandez
  • Babu Bhatt
  • Mr. Lippman
  • Ping the Chinese food delivery boy

With season 3, we start to see more of the cast of characters we expect from Seinfeld. While Newman can be heard in season 2 (voiced by Larry David), we don’t actually get to see Jerry’s arch nemesis until season 3.

Season 4

  • Joe Davola variant clown costume
  • Susan Ross
  • Russell Dalrymple
  • Sidra
  • Ruthie Cohen (Monk’s cashier)
  • Estelle Costanza
  • Frank Costanza
  • Larry the Cook (Monk’s)
  • Marla Penny the Virgin

Season 4 is actually the first time we see George’s parents, so if you were wondering why I haven’t included them until now, that’s why. In this season, we’re first introduced to Ruthie Cohen, the cashier at Monk’s. I chose to include her here because it is her first appearance. The alternative was to include her in season 7, for her work in the episode The Doll, but as you will see later on, season 7 is already pretty packed.

Season 5

  • Puffy Shirt Jerry
  • Jane, with squares to spare
  • Laura the lip reader
  • Mickey Abbott
  • Poppie
  • Lloyd Braun (Peter Keleghan)
  • Tony the Mimbo

With season 5, we get another version of Jerry, but who wouldn’t want puffy shirt Jerry? We see several one-off characters here, but we also get Mickey, and Lloyd Braun.

Season 6

  • Justin Pitt
  • Kenny Bania
  • Jimmy with shoes
  • Frank Costanza with Fusilli Jerry
  • David Puddy (with interchangeable face paint head)
  • Tim Whatley
  • Matt Wilhelm
  • Nana Seinfeld
  • Barbara “Babs” Kramer
  • Mr. Morgan

Season 6 brings us numerous reoccurring characters. With such an action packed line up, I chose not to include the variants, Eye Patch Kramer, and Big Salad Elaine, but I couldn’t pass up Frank Costanza with Fusilli Jerry. We’re introduced to J. Peterman at the end of season 6, but with an already packed roster, I chose to exclude him until season 7, where he really hits his stride.

Season 7

  • J. (Jacopo) Peterman
  • Bob Cobb (The Maestro)
  • The Soup Nazi
  • Lloyd Braun (Matt McCoy)
  • Sue Ellen Mischke (The Braless Wonder)
  • Marisa Tomei
  • Jackie Chiles
  • Cedric (Ray) and Bob
  • Mabel Choate with marble rye
  • Rabbi Glickman

I think that season 7 is definitely the most star studded. We get Bob Cobb, the Soup Nazi, Jackie Chiles, Cedric and Bob, and Marisa Tomei playing herself.

Season 8

  • Marcelino with Little Jerry and bounced clown check
  • Mr. Marbles
  • Jenna with toothbrush
  • Jillian with man hands, lobster, and loaf of bread.
  • Vincent from Champagne Video (with VCR play button)
  • Brody with bootleg copies of Death Blow and Cry, Cry Again
  • Wyck Thayer, Chairman of the Susan Ross Foundation
  • Elaine in Cinco de Mayo apparel

Season 8 brings a few more of Jerry’s girlfriends. Jillian’s man hands would look excellent in action figure form. Marcelino and Brody are good characters, but I really think it’s the accessories that make these two figures. I thought about making Mr. Marbles just an accessory for another version of Jerry, but he really should be a character in his own right. I don’t think that Wyck Thayer is a strong character, but required for completion’s sake.

Season 9

  • George with Frogger machine
  • Franklin Delano Romanowski
  • Mr. Kruger
  • Mustache Jerry
  • Darin the intern
  • Izzy Mandelbaum
  • “Fragile” Frankie Merman
  • Sara Sidarides Pimple Popper M.D.

With the final season, we have already been introduced to some of the best characters the show has to offer. So, I feel like while this was a great season, we’re not seeing anything too amazing for the action figure line. Although, I think that Mr. Kruger might be one of my favorite characters.

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Lego Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Just some fun with a few minifigures. This might make for a good Lego themed video game, or even a Lego themed movie (couldn’t be worse than the live action one).

Lego Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

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I found a gecko in the house the other night. He was a real pain to catch, but didn’t seem to mind me once I had him.


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Cocoa Cay Hermet Crab

We found this little guy on a jetty in Cocoa Cay. He was friendly enough to pose for a few pics.

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Hawk in the Neighborhood

I saw this hawk perched on a small oak tree in the neighborhood. It let me get pretty close, less than 100 feet.



Then I got a little too close, and it flew away.



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Javascript Explode and Implode

This is a really simple problem that many PHP developers come across when working with Javascript. Some common tasks in PHP are to explode a string or implode an array. While there are no methods in Javascript named explode or implode, the same functionality is very easy to accomplish.

First, let’s tackle PHP’s explode. To do the same thing in Javascript, you would want to use the string method split() as follows:

var myStr = "Hello World";
var myArr = myStr.split(" ");

The resulting array myArr would contain [‘Hello’, ‘World’]

Next on to PHP’s implode. To do the same thing in Javascript, you would want to use the array method join() as follows:

var myArr = [“abc”, “def “,”ghi”, “jkl”];
var myStr = myArr.join(‘,’);

The string myStr now equals ‘abc,def,ghi,jkl’

There you have it, simple, effective Javascript equivalents for PHP’s implode and explode

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Lego Christmas Village

I stitched together a picture of my Lego Christmas village. It consists of the four sets that are currently available.

Lego Christmas VillageLego Christmas Village

From left to right, Winter Village Cottage (10229), Winter Village Post Office (10222), Winter Village Bakery (10216), and Winter Village Toy Shop (10199).

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WordPress Migration

I got sick of having to reinvent the wheel with CakePHP every time I wanted to make a post with some feature I was missing. So, I finally migrated my site to WordPress. There will be missing functionality for a while, but I wanted to at least get the site up and running. Over the coming weeks/months, I will work on replacing any missing functionality on the site.

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One Reason Why I Continually Shop Wtih Amazon

In short, their customer service.

Companies are bound to make mistakes. Orders will be misplaced, packages damaged during shipping, and products will malfunction or break. It’s how a company responds to those problems that makes them great, and I have consistently had a great experience with Amazon.

Most recently, I had an issue with a DVD I purchased. I had bought the I Love Lucy Complete Series (affiliate link) for my then fiance in October of 2010 (over a year ago). Well, since it’s 34 discs, we weren’t able to watch it all right away. In fact, we are just now getting close to finishing it. The second to last disc of the set gave us problems. It would not play properly, getting stuck in a loop on one of the production logos. We were unable to navigate to the menu or any other part of the disc. I checked the disc, and there were a couple scratches, which I know we didn’t cause because this was our first time handling it.

Since it was purchased over a year prior, I figured we were screwed, but I would try to contact the manufacturer. I checked the packaging, and found, so I try to bring up the page, but it doesn’t exist anymore. I can’t find any sort of useful link on the Paramount home page. I search for the CBS Home Entertainment website, which does have a contact page, but no contact form on it. They do have links to Twitter and Facebook, so I contact them through Twitter, and wait for a response.

In the mean time, I figure it won’t hurt to contact Amazon, since they are often very helpful, and maybe can at least get me in contact with the manufacturer. I explain the issue with the disc in an email, and ask if they are able to replace the single disc. I get an email within a couple hours letting me know that they cannot replace the single disc, but are willing to replace the entire set for me. They sent me a replacement, and are paying for the return shipping on the defective set. Their service is much more than I asked for, and certainly more than I expected, but why I continue to buy with confidence from Amazon.

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