Monthly Archives: September 2019

Unknown Camping Tips

With the onset of fall officially here, I reached out to a handful of my buddies and asked if they wanted to go on an impromptu camping trip at a site just an hour away from most of us. Luckily for me, most of my friends enjoy out of the blue plans like this, and those guys are always down for something fun like camping, hiking, and canoeing with each other. With the promise of beer and a good time around a campfire, everyone agreed on a date and time for next weekend quite readily.

I’m also quite lucky to have one of those buddies volunteer to drive me and another friend down there. That takes the gas/driving commitment out of the equation for me, which is less work on my end and more fun playing tunes in the car and navigating for my friend.

Just as well, he’s quite keen on camping and hiking and has some of the nicest gear you could hope for related to those hobbies. Since he’s a master of the outdoors, it’s no surprise that he has extra gear for people and offered me an extra hammock for the night. It’s safe to say I’ll enjoy the hell out of hammock camping for the first time. I really can’t wait to see how comfy I find the experience the following morning.

Most times we go camping, I always end up forgetting a thing or two that I would’ve rather had with me just in case. It’s not that I ever leave behind an essential item like a sleeping bag or anything like that. It’s just more along the lines of convenience items for camping, like an extra blanket or multiple pairs of shoes and sandals to adapt to the weather.

This time, though, I’ll be quite prepared for multiple things. For example, I’ll be taking a handful of extra shipping supplies, like cardboard and packing tape in order to have extra materials for kindling, sleeping pads to put under other people’s sleeping bags, and the tape is extremely useful for keeping food sealed quite well (to help ward off against thieving raccoons in the night). Who would’ve guessed that basic shipping supplies would be so useful on a camping trip? I never really knew they could be so versatile until I saw a buddy bring some scrap cardboard for a multitude of uses around our previous campsite.

A Glimpse into the Past

There’s something pretty magical about revisiting old things or getting your hands on someone else’s old belongings. It almost feels like you’re transported back to that point in time when those things were used a lot or popular.

I’ve always felt this way about obtaining old books, especially when you can tell that the pages are quite delicate and have been around a lot longer than most of the people I know. It’s fascinating to think about such a thing being printed back in the day, and it gets me to wondering who people were when reading such a book, or just wondering what the previous owners were like.

In fact, recently my fiancee and I were looking through some old shipping boxes full of cassettes and records that her dad used to listen to. Since he no longer had a record player and we recently got one, he figured we should give a look through of everything he owned in case we wanted anything in his collection.

As we flipped through everything, it was enchanting getting to glimpse into his life simply by the records he owned. Taste in music says a heck of a lot about someone, or that’s at least how I like to look things. I can get a read on how average someone is depending on what they listen to, and if they do happen to stray from the norm, it’s easier to get a read on who they are, what their life is like, and more all because of the albums they choose to own and listen to.

This is something I’m highly fascinated with, the whole “getting to know someone based on what they used to like or own.” I mean, if anyone somewhat close to me in my life who is a lot older offered for me to look through their old shipping boxes full of belongings, I’d hop on the opportunity right away to get an idea of what they used to be like (and possibly still are like). It’s not often people open up to others so willingly, so when these opportunities arise to truly know someone better, even if they’re unaware of how I view it, I definitely hop on the chance.

It makes me wonder what someone down the line will think of me when they go through my record collection or book collection. I like to think that what I own now gives a good indication as to who I am and what I think about life. It’s exciting to conjecture about what I’ll be like in ten years time, and what the me then will think of me now.

Unboxing Videos

It seems YouTube content creators have thought up just about everything when it comes to footage for people to watch. From tutorials (what most people probably have used YouTube for at one time or another) to video game “Let’s Play” videos, there’s everything out there you could hope for.

What’s really quite interesting is to watch new trends happen as time goes on and the platform develops. You start to see certain creators draw inspiration from others while forging a new path. And while watching people play video games in their set up rooms is something that isn’t new to the genre, watching people unbox limited edition games, accessories, and consoles has become quite an interesting and exciting experience as of late.

That’s right: people make videos for you to watch them unbox their gaming necessities. It’s exactly what it sounds like, too. From watching them carefully remove shipping supplies and packaging materials to finally removing the product from within, the experience watching these videos is pretty interesting to say the least.

I think what pulls people in so much is the believability of it all. You can tell that the content creators are actually removing this stuff from the packaging and all the shipping supplies for the first time, which generates a sense of excitement, wonder, and mystery for you, the viewer. This directly impacts your experience, taking you from a passive bystander to a firsthand participant (or so the perspective makes you feel).

Just like so many other fads and genres on YouTube, unboxing videos are a legitimate source of pleasure for so many viewers out there. Whether you watch one to gather a sense of the quality of a product or you just enjoy watching others take shiny new products out of a box, these videos are at the very least something different than the rest. And it will definitely allow you to get a sense of value on the product you may be considering buying, because a lot of these videos also review the products once they unbox them. They’ll honestly and accurately describe what flaws the product has and what they like about them (though it’s important to keep in mind that this is all subjective to the creator, despite some of them attempting to be as objective as possible). So, these videos double down as an experience in total as well as a means of reviewing a product.

A New Way of Looking at Money Spent

I think one of the main things people should spend their money on, rather than material things that are brand new such as clothes and technology, should be books and food. I’ve got a few reasons as to why these two things are so important in our everyday lives, though I’m sure people would argue that books are unneeded because of the internet and food is something that we all spend money on inevitably to begin with.

But, I’ve got a few retorts to both. Let’s get on with it.


If I ever see a deal for books online, especially ones I’ve been seeking, I order them immediately. I can’t begin to tell you how excited I get to see shipping boxes with books in them sitting on my doorstep waiting to be opened. There’s absolutely nothing like a new book and its smell and feel. (Perhaps I’m getting ahead of myself here.)

Books are worth your money primarily because of the benefits reading has for you. And I don’t just mean reading any text. No, the internet and scanning your smartphone isn’t nearly as great for you as picking up a book with sources or a strong story. To begin, books are a lot more legitimate than random articles you may find online. Just as well, reading pages in front of you isn’t nearly as harmful on your eyes. And as a bonus, you actually read faster when consuming text from the page opposed to text on a phone, tablet, or computer. These all sound like compelling reasons to order a few books online and eagerly await the shipping boxes like I do, don’t they?


Yes, we all budget for food and groceries anyway, but I think the problem with this mindset is that we look at food merely as a necessity and something we should try to save the most money on, period.

This is where things can go downhill. By looking at food as something you need to save money on, you automatically shoot your diet in the foot and undershoot the importance of what you put into your body. You should be fully willing and happy to buy whole foods, organic produce, and fresh/non-processed items. These are much healthier for you, they inspire you to actually appreciate what you’re eating, and you’ll learn a lot more about food and dishes once you prepare and cook with them everyday.

There’s something that needs changed in the way we currently operate as a society, especially considering how lazy everything has become, from browsing uncited sources online to microwaving our every meal. Neither are healthy, but I hope this inspires you to make a change in your life for the better.