COVID Home Tests/Running socks/”Sorry for my delay” alternatives


Recomendo: issue no. 289

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Free covid tests
US residents can order 4 free at-home covid tests to be mailed by the US Post Office to their home. One set per household. Order from this US Post Office site, which is well designed and takes 10 seconds. — KK

Great running socks
I started running a few months ago and needed running socks. These six-packs of Saucony Socks are just what I needed. They are slightly cushioned and have arch compression. As an added bonus, they are too weird-looking for my wife or daughters to be tempted to swipe. — MF

Alternatives for “Sorry for my delay”
I feel like a weight has been lifted after reading What if we just stopped being so available? (The Atlantic, possible paywall). Joe Pinsker rants about the expectations of prompt responses and how we should all stop apologizing for failing to meet them. He says, “For one thing, having multiple obligations and priorities means that we are, all of us, in a perpetual state of delay on something, and apologizing for that fact feels like having to apologize for your standard mode of being.” He spoke with communication experts who suggest alternatives for “Sorry for my delay,” like “Thank you for your patience” or “I wanted to make sure I thought carefully about your good questions.” But I agree with Pinsker who prefers to omit an apology or expectation altogether and instead just write your message as if you’re responding right away, because content is more important than speed. This article is a much needed absolution. We all have the right to disconnect. — CD

Star gazing navigation
Stargazing apps on your phone are magic. They work like AR-augmented reality — overlaying the night sky with outlines of constellations, star and planet names, paths of the moon, and even satellite, comet and asteroid sightings. The apps are uncannily accurate, and easy to understand. There are free apps and expensive subscriptions, but I use Star Walk 2 which cost $3. It’s the best $3 space investment I’ve ever made. — KK

Simple packing hack
I just returned from visiting my grandmother in Mexico, and aside from my packing cubes which makes my suitcase manageable, this technique of folding all of my outfits together helped me get dressed quickly in the mornings without mulling over what to wear or pulling everything out of their cubes. — CD

Entertaining electronics teardowns
Recomendo reader Andrew Denny says, “I really love the YouTube Channel of Big Clive, a soft-spoken Scotsman. He tears down cheap electronic products — often really cheap no-name stuff from ebay — to explain how they work. I have no idea about electronics at all, but I love watching it and I’m gradually learning.” I’ve been watching Big Clive videos for a couple of years, myself. — MF

-- Kevin Kelly, Mark Frauenfelder, Claudia Dawson 01/30/22

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