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Monday, May 25 Front Page >> Random Rants >> Late November Musings

Nov 27, 2002, 10:35pm

So here's the deal.

I update this rant page, then I go away for a few days. I come back, and no comments are posted. Hey, that's cool. But I put off updating for a few more days. Then I start getting emails or ICQ messages from people going "hey fucknuts, where's your latest rant on Spiffle?" (Hi Ernie, Dave, Karen, Bill, Scootie (??) and others! :)). So you DO read about my pitiful life, dontcha. Some dude from ZD Net's massive pipeline checks in like EVERY DAY. It's either Chris or Dvorak - my odds are on the former.

Well, November's come and gone, and trust me, I got lots to rant about. LOTS.

Latte Art Competition in Seattle

Click for larger image

I have to say, what a sham. I attended CoffeeFest in Seattle a few weeks ago, and they had the first Latte Art Competition (sponsored by Durex... uh, Sponsored by Faema Espresso Machines). The guy who won deserved to win (Shout out to Blind Mellon Zack), but the second place finisher? Marginal. The third place finisher? Yikes. Okay, she was an Asian in a cowgirl outfit, and poured two of the latte art samples at the same time, with both hands. But the ART in the cup sucked, to be frank. The judges didn't really know what they were doing, they didn't sample the drinks, and from some of the comments they made, they didn't even seem to grasp what latte art is all about ("hey, you seemed to have drawn a face in your latte art! Did you plan that?")

See the sample to the right? That's latte art. That's my latte art. That's what I call my average latte art. But it would have beat the second and third place finishers, no problems at all. However, it wouldn't have beat the fifth place finisher, or the sixth or the eighth. I hope to gosh next year's competition becomes a real one.

Richmond Drivers


Enough said. I can start to understand why folks in LA travel with guns in the car.

Christmas Approaching

Christmas. I have a love hate relationship with Christmas. I love giving stuff away. I get crabby on the holiday, and I don't know why.

This year, we're going to Ottawa for Christmas, to spend it with my Mom and family. Mmmmm holiday flying. Gotta love it. Not. Well, at least I didn't pay for the tickets - Jeanette did, as a Christmas Gift to me. Wow.

We'll also be spending New Year's in Ottawa as well, though I just found out the people I hoped to ring in the New Year with are going to be out of town - bummer. Maybe I can find some of my other old Ottawa buddies for New Years Eve. Gotta start working on that.

The reason we're going to Ottawa always weighs heavily on my mid.

Holiday Gift List and Contest

In case you didn't know, over at the site that features moi as a Senor Editor (say that with a Spanish accent with pride), we're giving away over $2,000 in prizes (and that's in real money, US dollars, not peso money, aka Canadian Chretien Bux) as part of a huge contest.

Go see the holiday gift list here.

Go see the contest details here.

The catch? You gotta be a site member to get in on all the huge prizes, and you have to vote or comment on a product in the Holiday Gift List. The cool thing is, the more times you vote on products, the more comments you make, the more entries you get!

Other Rantings

The whole state of the Internet has me bloody depressed as of late. While fans of this site may think I don't update it often, the fact is, I'm putting on average maybe 15,000 words a week "online". I just don't always do it at Spiffle.

But a lot of websites I used to visit don't update any longer, or have lost their focus. The artistry on the web, the passion seems to be going. It's all commercial now.

CoffeeGeek maintains itself by having minimal advertising. There's no way around that. But by and large all of the content on the site is by people passionate about quality coffee. There's over 2,000,000 million words (give or take a hundred thou) on website, and 1,900,000 of them are non commercial in nature. Much of it is quality reviews on products by site members. Some of it is words by me and other columnists on the site. A lot of it is intelligent, passionate debate and discussion in the forums.

Yes, there's other sites out there like this, but it seems to me more and more of them are dropping adspace into places where you a) wouldn't expect it, or b) never saw it before. Some "passion" sites on high tech products are now dropping affiliate link articles into every second or third slot. Some are doing stealth linking in return for payments. Others have dropped any pretense of being independent and are just plain shills for a major sponsor now.

That won't be happening with CoffeeGeek, as long as I run the site. We have ONE area where sponsors pay for content - New and Noteworthy. There's a clear disclaimer at the bottom that says it is a paid spot, but when we do a facelift on the site, it will be made even clearer. Everything else? PASSION drives the content - not bucks.

2 comments | reply

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