Answers, the first!

OK, it’s time to start providing answers to questions posed for Ask Me Anything! 2011. Lots of good queries, as always, and I’m actually going to keep things open for questioning right up until I post the answer to the last question I receive, so feel free to keep things going! Post questions in comments to this post, or use e-mail or Facebook message.

An anonymous reader asks:

Have you ever tried a sustained use-no-electronic-gadget (banning Internet use or TV watching, for example)? If you did, what happened? If you haven’t, what’s your opinion of these attempts?

The closest I’ve come was a three month period in 2008 when I stopped blogging. I was just burned out on the whole thing, and I needed a big-time break. Those two months went quite well; I did a lot of movie watching and I did quite a bit of writing and I did quite a bit of stuff with the family. But doing without just for the sake of doing without has always seemed a pretty odd thing to do, so I’ve never had a “no teevee month” or “no Internet for a season” or anything similar.

I do cut down on my Internet usage on occasion, when I think I’m not getting enough done, and I’ve gone so far as to look for an ethernet cable with a male plug at one end and a female plug in the other, so I could disconnect the wireless router without disconnecting the Main Library Computer (named Arwen, actually), so The Wife and The Daughter can have Internet while I concentrate on other stuff. But I haven’t actually found one yet.

You live in a smaller place (i.e., not a large mansion). Does your desire to collect books cause problems? Do you have to “cull the herd” every so often?

Sigh. Yeah, it does create space issues, most definitely. And I should cull the herd more often than I do. I have a lot of books left over from my philosophy-reading days in college that I must admit I am unlikely to ever read again, for instance. Culling is hard. It really is!

I don’t really buy as many books now as I used to, with the exception being the quarterly library book sales, where I generally can’t help myself. I suppose I could start a small used book business for myself on eBay or Amazon — in fact, which is better? Anybody know? I’ve sold books on eBay before, but I tend to be less-than-consistent with it.

And so it starts! Ask Me Anything, folks! Check out my neophyte entry in Tumblr land, too!

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2 Responses to Answers, the first!

  1. jason says:

    FWIW, I find the seller fees on Amazon a lot more reasonable than on eBay (i.e., it's possible to actually make a bit of money on Amazon, whereas I think I've actually lost money the last few times I've used eBay). Basically, it's free to create a listing, Amazon takes a cut of the sale price, but then they throw in a shipping credit that's usually about the same difference as what they've deducted. Depending on how you price things, you usually break even; some of my more rare and/or obscure books have even generated a profit. But then I'm not really trying to make money… I just want to clean out my basement without giving everything away.

  2. csmith2884 says:

    I am an ebay seller and local for you so pm me sometime if you want some help. BTW my router and many others have settings to block any MAC address for any given time. How we know the kids get off at 9:00 pm.

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