i biked to the cafe this morning to meet up with my father so we could make a supply run at costco then the restaurant depot. my aunt and uncle were there so we were delayed an hour before we left. at costco i wanted to get an LED flood light bulb (PAR38, around $18) for my parents' dining room but unfortunately the equivalent wattage (75 watts) just wasn't bright enough. we did get a trio of LED bulbs ($12) to try out.

after unloading the supplies back at the cafe, i left with my mother back to belmont, leaving my bicycle behind so my father could it ride home after work (instead of having someone come back to pick him up).

i tried out the LED bulbs immediately, installing one on the front porch, one on the back porch, and one the basement stairwell. using only 2.5 watts, each LED bulb is supposed to be the equivalent of a 54 watts bulb. inside the plastic globe is an electronic column fitted with 18 LED's. the one in the stairwell worked the best, encased in a frosted glass cover. the light in the back porch doesn't have a cover so the bulb is exposed and gives a harsh eye burn if you look at it directly. the one in the front fared the worst, since the glass shade wraps up most of the bulb, leaving a small space for the actual light to shine. i was hoping it'd be better at night, but it was so dim to be almost unusable, so i removed the bulb and screwed it on one of the living room lamps. i also did the same with the back porch light. they worked better in lamps, but compared to a CFL bulb, they're noticeably not as bright. advertised as warm white, the LED bulbs weren't as warm as the CFL's either. i still like LED bulbs because they use way less electricity, but until they can make them brighter, i'm not sure if i'd change out the CFL's in my house just yet.

after dinner (my sister cooked tonight; my mother was sleeping, my father at work), i returned to cambridge. the weather today was a bit raw, with temperature in the 40's and occasional drizzles. it wasn't raining when i went home but the air was still damp. the seat was pushed up at an uncomfortable elevated slant, not sure if it was my father's doing. i didn't have time to adjust it which resulted in some sore butt muscles. my father also left my keys at the cafe (including the keys for the bike lock as well as to the house); fortunately they had a spare set of my house keys. the only thing i needed was a bike lock key which i had another copy once i got back. i got home earlier enough before my roommate made dinner; he used the rice cooker and got some roasted chicken wings from market basket.

it's been so long since mad men was on the air, i'd already forgotten what made it good in the first place. despite the fact that i rewatched some favorite episodes a few weeks ago to get myself excited for the new season, i could feel the apathy creeping in. after watching the season premiere tonight though, i'm slowly beginning to warm back up to mad men. i don't think it's a show for everyone, but i'm certainly onboard this period drama. if anyone watched tonight's premiere without following the other seasons, they'll have missed a handful of inside jokes (joan bringing her baby to the office was wall-to-wall funny secret nods). biggest shocker was the fact that megan knows about dick whitman. biggest happy surprise was learning that joan's services is still very much needed at SCDP. this was a megan-heavy episode which is a big plus, but it makes me cringe watching the widening generation gap (this can't end well).