Friday, July 19, 2019

Bumble App Review – Is it any good and how does it compare to other dating sites?

After having tried some of the online dating sites over the years, I figured I would give one of the dating apps a try. After doing some research I decided to try out Bumble. One of the unique features of Bumble is that women have to make the first move by sending a message if they are interested. So how did it work out and how does it compare to other dating sites?

I tried it for a couple weeks and I should note, I am male so I was only able to “like” profiles but not send messages. Signing up was fairly simple. It asks you to upload some pictures, answer some questions and fill out a little bit about yourself.

One thing I noticed was it does not really let you write much about yourself. In the “About Me” section, I was literally only able to write 3 sentences before it cut off with a character limit. The questions it gives are not the best. For example, one that seems to show up a lot in the profiles was “Do you like the beach or the mountains?” This does not really tell you much about the person.

The app lets you set a couple filters for free to help narrow down your search. You have to pay if you want to add more filters. You can also pay to get premium features such as a boost for more attention, and the ability to see who has liked you even if you have not liked them.

Once you have your profile and settings filled out you begin looking through profiles one by one. I never tried Tinder but I'm familiar with the swipe right and swipe left feature which is how it works in Bumble to either like or dislike a profile.

Since Bumble doesn't really let you add much information about yourself and the questions are pretty bland, it pretty much just comes down to a pictures app. Because of this, I can see most people just looking quickly at the pictures and swiping right or left without even reading anything in the profile. This works if you are an attractive person, but for most people on the app, this will not be beneficial.

I tended to be selective when going through the profiles and only swiping right if I really had interest and saw potential after having looked through the whole profile. My filters were also strong enough that I was able to go through all potential profiles within a few days. Each day new ones show up though.

After a couple weeks of using the app, it resulted in 0 matches. So this means none of the profiles I liked, liked back. I guess I am not too surprised by it, but it would have been nice to actually get a match. I will probably delete the app soon.

For me, I am more interested in dating sites that allow people to really show who they are. For example on OKCupid there is a lot more opportunity to write about yourself and answer questions to see how you match up with other people.

I see Bumble as more of a pictures dating app that will work for people who are very photogenic. Because of this, I do not see it working out too well for most people. Overall if the swipe right, swipe left dating app style appeals to you, it might be worth a try, but if you are looking for something more meaningful, there are better options out there.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Life Expectancy – Changes for Each Generation

Life expectancy has increased with each generation as people have learned to live healthier lives and the medical field has improved to prevent and treat illnesses. The issues our parents and grandparents had to deal with are often no longer a problem due to advances in medicine or new findings in related to health.

Now is a great time to be alive but there are always things to improve upon. While each generation learns from previous generations on how to be healthier and live longer, we are also exposed to new things which might actually be harmful in the long run.

For example new foods are being introduced into our diets each year. A lot of these foods are processed and artificial. While they may be considered safe to eat, the long term effects on health are still unknown.

Not only has food changed, but other things such as technology and the environment have changed significantly in recent years. We are exposed to a lot of new technology such as cellular and wifi signals. These things may be safe for now, but there is no long term research on these things because they are so new. It could be that in 50 years they find out that some of this technology is the cause of a new illness due to long term exposure.

Cars and factories and people in general continue to pollute the air and water that we all depend on. We might think the air and water is ok now, but again, there could be long term health concerns that we don't know about yet and won't know until it is too late.

Each generation improves by learning from previous generations, but at the same time they are faced with new issues that the previous generations did not have to deal with. Since no one knows what the future holds, we just have to use the information we have now to try to live long healthy lives.

Friday, July 5, 2019

Insecurity – Everything is ok, or is it?

Recently I found some posts on Reddit asking questions such as “Girls, what are some things guys should not be insecure about?” and “Guys, what are some things girls should not be insecure about?” They are quite interesting to read because you can discover the things most people are insecure about and see how it relates to yourself.

For context, here are some of the most common things guys and girls are insecure about, in which the opposite sex assures they should not be, based on the comments in the threads:

Guys:
Intelligence (not knowing something)
Hair (baldness)
Facial hair (not able to grow beard)
Penis size (not big enough)
Liking feminine things or appearing feminine
Showing feelings or emotions / crying
Weight (too fat or too skinny)
Height (too short)

Girls:
Making the first move
Intelligence (appearing too smart)
Body hair
Breast size or shape
Periods
Hair style / appearance
Weight (too fat or too skinny)
Height (too tall)
Being seen without makeup / nails done
Age (getting older)

After reading over the posts, one of the main takeaways was that people should not be insecure about all these things because other people really don't care as much as we think they do. Another finding was that many of the things you might feel insecure about are actually liked or valued by others.

We tend to be our own worst critic and we see every small detail about ourselves and it's easy to get into a negative mindset about any little flaw or imperfection. Then we might think that the whole world sees us in this way when in fact they probably don't even notice at all or if they do, it not a big deal to them.

Based on the number of times these kinds of questions have been asked, it is clear that many people struggle with insecurity. Feeling this way can really bring you down and hurt your self esteem. So how can one overcome these thoughts and feel better about themself?

I think the answer is simply that you have to learn to be happy with yourself and be accepting of who you are. This is easier said than done. You really have to believe that you are ok with who you are in order to overcome the things that are causing you to feel insecure.

A viewpoint that gets brought up is that while others might not care about the thing that is making a person insecure, that person still feels insecure about it themselves. People can tell you there is no reason to feel bad about whatever is bothering you, but until you believe it yourself, it will continue to be something you struggle with.

So the question is, if all these things we are insecure about are actually not a big deal, why are we insecure about them? I think the reason is a combination of conditioning by society as well as human nature which causes us to be judgmental. We see other people in the world and we make judgments about them just based on how they look.

In terms of society and media, we have shows like The Bachelor and The Bachelorette which create unrealistic expectations about what potential suitors are supposed to look like. They go through thousands of applications and select what they think are the most attractive and desirable people to be on the show.

Of course the people they select are very good looking and this conveys a message that you have to look like these people in order for people to like you. Then you take a look in the mirror and realize you don't look like the people on the show and it makes you feel bad. This is an example of how we are influenced by the media, but I believe we as humans have a natural tendency to make judgments based on what we see.

One might say it is bad to judge people based on their appearance without getting to know them. I agree, in an ideal world, you should not “judge a book by its cover” but in the real world, we don't have the time or opportunity to get to know every single person we see. Just going out into the world, you may be around hundreds of people in a day. It's not possible to sit down and have an in-depth conversation with every person, so you have to use the knowledge you have to make quick judgments based on what you see.

An example of this would be when looking for a potential boyfriend/girlfriend. When out in the world, you might unconsciously scan everyone you pass or interact with and make quick judgments about if there would be any potential for a relationship based on what you see. You might look for things like age, attractiveness, style, signs of availability, and demeanor.

These things then act as a filter for if there is potential for a relationship with that person. If they pass the quick filter test, you may be more open to interacting with them vs if they do not pass the filter, you may have no interest to get to know them.

I think because of this and the desire to be liked and accepted by other people is the reason we fear judgment and in turn end up becoming insecure about what we believe are things about ourselves that are not good enough.

So which mindset is correct? On one hand, we live in a judgmental society that puts a lot of value on the way we look. On the other hand, people are saying that these things are not really a big deal and that we shouldn't worry about them. I think you have to keep both viewpoints in mind and realize that yes, you may be judged on things, but at the same time, you should not allow these things to bring you down or make you feel bad about yourself.

Also keep in mind that you are not defined by one thing. Everyone has things they wish they could change or could be different. The truth is there are so many things that make us who we are. Even if there are a few things you might be unhappy with, there are plenty of other things about you that are likable. Also everyone has different opinions on what they like and dislike. Something you don't like about yourself may in fact be a thing that someone actually does like.

Overall, I think the best advice when it comes to insecurity is to learn to be happy and accepting of who you are. Once you have achieved this, it can be freeing and can translate into self confidence which itself is an attractive quality.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Connected Isolation Blog 10 Year Anniversary – Most Popular Posts

Back in 2009 I decided to start this blog just as something to do. I didn't have any long term goal for it, but figured it would be a good way to write articles for people who might be interested in reading them. Since then, ten years have passed and surprisingly I have stuck with it. Some of the stats during this time include:

- Over 500 articles published



- About 2.5 million page views



- Over 1000 comments

For the 10 year anniversary, I have decided to recap the most popular posts from the blog during this time. Here are the articles that were most popular:

The most popular articles came as a bit of a surprise and they happened to be the ones I wrote each year covering the Monopoly Collect and Win games. These are yearly promotions done by grocery stores where you collect game tickets to try to win prizes. In my articles, I help track the rare pieces needed to win and because of this, the articles became very popular with people playing the game.

Apparently I was not the only one who was wondering what happened to Discovery Zone. A lot of other people were searching for it too and happened to find this article. It ended up getting a lot of comments from people sharing their experiences about going to Discovery Zone when they were a kid.

Years ago I was in a situation where I was exposed to a loud noise which hurt my ear and had a lasting effect over many months. I could not find much advice or help on the internet so I wrote about my own experience in hopes that it would help others. It turns out many other people had also experienced a similar situation and came to get advice and share what happened to them.

Years ago I spotted evidence that their might be mice getting into my kitchen. In this article I go over how I found where they were getting in and how I solved the problem.

I had been getting a lot of spam phone calls coming from phone numbers that looked similar to my own so I decided to look into it and write about what I found. Based on the popularity of the post, it seems this has been an issue that has affected many other people so they came to this article looking for answers.

My toilet had been making an annoying whistling sound every time it flushed so I learned how to fix it and then shared my experience in this article to help others who might have the same issue. Turns out many other people did have this issue so they came to this article for help on how to solve it.

What can we learn from the results? 

Looking over the trends, what all of these articles have in common is a topic where people were looking for more information and wanted to learn more about. I'm glad to have been able to provide helpful articles for people looking for information in these cases.

This can be good advice for anyone out there looking to write articles or share information on the internet. Writing about what you know or what you have experienced in life can be very helpful to others out there. We are all trying to learn more as we go through life and the more advice we can share with each other, the better off we will be!

Friday, June 14, 2019

Arm & Hammer Ultra Max 3 in 1 Body Wash Review Fresh Scent

I was at the local Dollar Tree dollar store the other day and decided to take at look at the different shampoos and body washes. One that caught my eye was the Arm & Hammer Ultra Max 3 in 1. It had a good scent and I have been pleased with Arm & Hammer products in the past so I decided to give it a try.

It's a 12 oz size for a dollar which is pretty good considering the cheap shampoos and washes at most stores usually start around $2 or $3. The scent is pretty good. I would describe it as a clean refreshing soap-like scent.

The consistency is a little on the watery side and the color is clear. It does not create too much of a lather so you may find it takes a little more to get the job done compared so some other washes. It rinses off easily and leaves the skin a bit dry feeling. It seems it does not have too much moisturizing properties.

It is a 3 in 1 so it can be used as a shampoo, conditioner, and body wash, but personally I would probably use it mostly as a body wash. Overall I am pleased with the product. It might not be quite as good as the expensive stuff, but for $1 it is a pretty good deal!

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Get Ready for the Women's World Cup! Let's Go USWNT!

 
The 2019 Women's World Cup for soccer begins this Friday and the US Women's National Team will be playing their first game on Tuesday June 11th. They are currently ranked number 1 in the world so it should be a great tournament!

I have been following the US women's team since 2015 when they won the last World Cup and since then, they have become my favorite sports team. I'm not even sure how I got so into it, but I love this team! I didn't even play soccer growing up, but I just love watching these games.

The team consists of 23 players, some of which were on the last World Cup team, but there are also a lot of new players who will be making their first World Cup appearance. All the women are talented players and have great personalities which makes the team even more likable.

This year's roster includes: Alex Morgan, Tobin Heath, Carli Lloyd, Christen Press, Jessica McDonald, Mallory Pugh, Megan Rapinoe, Rose Lavelle, Morgan Brian, Julie Ertz, Lindsey Horan, Allie Long, Samantha Mewis, Tierna Davidson, Abby Dahlkemper, Crystal Dunn, Ali Krieger, Kelley O’Hara, Becky Sauerbrunn, Emily Sonnett, Alyssa Naeher, Adrianna Franch, and Ashlyn Harris.

In case you are new to the team, here is a series called 23 Stories which features each of the players talking about something that is important to them.

The games will be airing on FOX so it should be easy for everyone to watch. Tune in this summer and show your support. Let's go USWNT!

Friday, May 24, 2019

Walmart Photo Puzzle Review – Ordering a custom jigsaw puzzle

Recently I was looking for a unique gift idea and remembered about custom photo puzzles. This is where you upload a photo to a site and they create a jigsaw puzzle for you with the picture provided. I had wanted to try this out for a while so I started researching different options. I found that Walmart offered this service and it was for a reasonable price so I decided to try it out.

They have different size options such as 8x10, 10x14, and 11x14, with 110 – 252 pieces depending on the size. Prices range from about $12-20. I decided to go with the 8x10 which comes with a box.

Uploading the picture to the site was pretty easy. They give you some simple editing options to adjust the photo and preview it to make sure it looks good. Next you can place your order for in store pickup or delivery. I scheduled it for a pickup which would be ready in about 1 week.

When the delivery time arrived, I was supposed to get an email notifying me that it was ready but they never contacted me. I checked the tracking which said it arrived at the store, but on the site for some reason it said it was delayed. I waited another week or so and decided to go to the store to see if it was ready.

At the store I checked with customer service, pickup, and the photo department but they were unable to find it. Somehow it must have gotten lost or misplaced after it arrived. Since it was not paid for yet, they recommended re-ordering the puzzle. This was kind of a bummer, but luckily I was not in a hurry so I decided to try it out once more.

This time I scheduled it to be delivered to a different Walmart and prepaid for it online. After about a week, they gave me a call to tell me it was ready for pickup. Technically they were supposed to notify by email, but they notified me by phone which is ok. I went to the store and went to the photo department. This time it was there so I was able to pick it up.

So how is the puzzle? It comes in a nice box with the picture on the front. The sticker label with the picture has Walmart branding and other text around it which doesn't look as nice as it would if it just had the picture alone.

Inside, the pieces are loose and the box was not sealed so I was a little worried about that. Usually puzzle boxes are at least taped closed to prevent pieces from getting lost.

The puzzle pieces themselves are good quality. They have a decent thickness to the cardboard and they have a glossy finish for the photo side. They fit together cleanly and the puzzle piece shapes are interesting as they have variation and are not all the same cutout style.

I was able to put the 8x10 puzzle together in about 30 minutes. Thankfully it had all the pieces. Overall I was very pleased with the puzzle. It was challenging enough for adults but easy enough that it can be completed in one sitting. If you are looking for a unique gift idea, I would recommend a custom photo puzzle like this.