Andrew Huey

I survived Thanksgiving, but it wasn’t a great day. The fire alarm in my apartment building went off on Thanksgiving Eve, at 11 PM. So I had to get out of bed and go stand around outside in the cold for about a half-hour, before being allowed back in. I’d gone to bed at 10, and was pretty well asleep at 11 when the alarm went off. And afterwards, I just couldn’t get back to sleep. So I didn’t have a lot of energy on Thanksgiving. About all I did was re-watch some episodes of Doctor Who and nap. I guess that’s a reasonable Thanksgiving, really.

I tried to get back to something closer to normal yesterday, Black Friday, but that was also a pretty low-energy day. I didn’t read anything on Thanksgiving, and read only one comic on Friday. I’m noticing that my resilience just isn’t what it used to be, physically (and sometimes, mentally). One bad day or night can screw me up for a few days afterward. I’m not sure how much of that is just normal for my age, vs. being something I should worry about.

Anyway, what I wanted to write about was really just some Black Friday stuff. I don’t buy a lot of physical stuff on Black Friday, typically, but I keep my eye on some digital deals on software, subscription services, and stuff like that.

  • Last year, around this time, I signed up for a free one-year subscription to Calm. The deal was for one free year, and a second year at half-price. I’ve been using it pretty consistently this year, so I was ready to let it renew for the second year. But Calm runs a Black Friday deal every year, where you can get a lifetime sub at 60% off. So I went ahead and took advantage of that, and paid $160 for a lifetime sub. That’s a fair amount of money, but I’ve stuck with my meditation habit pretty consistently this year, and I think I’ll keep it up for the foreseeable future. That was my big Black Friday purchase.
  • Another thing I did last year was to sign up for Hulu’s Black Friday deal, which was $2/month for their ad-supported tier, for a year. So that was coming to an end. For that, I decided to pause the subscription for a few months are reevaluate it later. There’s some good stuff on Hulu, but I feel like I’ve got too many streaming services going right now, and too much stuff to watch.
  • I also subscribed to Letterboxd Pro last year, on Black Friday, for $12/year. I’ve been using Letterboxd a lot this year, so I let that renew, and it looks like I’ll continue to get the discounted $12/year rate.
  • It’s also about time for me to do my yearly review as to whether or not Pluralsight is worth renewing. I’m currently on a “legacy” plan, which should renew in January at $179. If I cancel my account, then I won’t be able to get that old rate back. Though it seems like their current Black Friday deal would let me subscribe to their “standard” plan for $179, so maybe there’s a little wiggle room there. I haven’t actually used Pluralsight that much this year, so maybe it’s time to give up on that. I’ll have to decide on that before the end of the year.
  • Meanwhile, my Amazon Prime subscription renews on December 1, for the usual $119. I’m always a little unhappy about supporting Amazon to the extent that I do, but honestly, it’d be kind of hard to live without Amazon at this point, and dropping Amazon Prime would not affect Amazon’s fortunes in the slightest. So I’ll just let that one renew too.
  • I generally think about various hardware upgrades around the end of the year. I don’t really have anything pressing this year though. I looked at the Kindle deals at Amazon. I’m happy enough with my current Kindle, but the new Paperwhite is supposed to be really good. But I just don’t need it. I might want a new iPhone next year, but, again, I don’t really feel like I need one just yet, and there aren’t any really good deals on iPhones. So probably no new hardware this year.

So that’s about it. Nothing much exciting, but it kept me out of trouble for an hour. I need to try to get back in the swing of things today and tomorrow, so I can go back to work Monday and have a good productive day. I know there’s going to be a lot of work waiting for me on the first day back from vacation.

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