Friday, November 21, 2008

My Favorite Things

Everyday we deal with dozens of products. Some of them just exist, others fail miserably (ahem, cough, PC, cough), and then there are those items that are a pleasure to use day in and day out. Here are my top 10 favorite things.

10. My iPod Touch. This thing is amazing. I will be trading it in soon to my wife for an iPhone, which is identical just with a phone built in.
9. The Fuji S5. This camera is basically a Nikon D200 at half the speed. It is frustratingly slow at times, but the colors and image quality are amazing. Fuji is discontinuing this camera so the price has dropped dramatically. Grab one if you can.
8. Element TVs. These are inexpensive small HD TVs that we got from Wal-Mart. We have a 20" and a 22" and they perform amazingly well for the price. We have one out at our camper in the Southern Tier and we pick up 7 HD stations with the antenna that are crystal clear with an amazing picture.
7. My RBK 5K goalie pads. These pads were under $300 and far out perform my older $1,000 Vaughns. I'm sure the current $1,000 Vaughns would be a world of difference from my old ones, but these RBKs rock!
6. My son's PSP. So much fun in such a small package has to make the list.
5. Bass Pro Shops White River Classics fly rods are awesome. I have a 5' 3wt rod that is great for the small creeks and small Rainbow's near the campground.
4. My 14' Lund fishing boat is close to the top of my list. I love it. It's perfect for two adult fishermen, but a third puts the comfort level over the edge. The same boat as a 17' version would be perfect.
3. Finao Albums. Our wedding album company has proven to be one of the best. The quality and presentation is amazing and the customer service has been fine also.
2. I'm going to guess at this next one. The iMac we bought a few months ago has been great, although I don't have all the software I need to use it on a daily basis. Everything I've used so far has been great and very intuitive. I love the Apple Store also for their contemporary atmosphere and customer service.
1. My all-time favorite toy is my car, a Mazda 3s 5-door. It could just as easily be the 4 door, but it has to have the 2.3 liter engine and the 5-speed manual transmission. I rented a 3i automatic in Florida once and although it was competent, it was not the same as my car. My car is so good that I'm on my second one. I had to trade in my 2004 a few years ago for something that could tow the camper, but I missed it so much that I got a 2008. When the lease is up my next one will no doubt be the 263hp Mazdaspeed 3.

So there you have it. I guess the common theme here is bang for the buck. I love getting things of high quality, especially when it didn't break the bank to do so. Don't get me wrong, I will spend the money for high quality vs. low price and poor quality, but there are a few things that perform well beyond their price. At $18,000, the Mazda 3s is on top of the list.

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