i went with my father back to costco to return the BR30 led lights and the electric toothbrushes we bought a week ago. the lights didn't work because they poked too far out from the recessed canisters that they were glaring. the toothbrushes simply because i managed to fix my old one. we stopped at the somerville market basket before i finally came back home.

i installed a single PAR30 LED bulb and noticed the improvement immediately. they didn't glare and was close to the original halogen bulb color. so i went ahead and replaced the other halogen bulbs - 10 in total. the LED bulbs are 3000K in color, while the halogens were 2700K. the LED's are slightly whiter, but still have a slight warmish hue, which is what i like. the LED's actually do put out more light than the halogens - 750 lumens versus 530 lumens - but use only about a quarter of the electricity per bulb - 13 watts versus 50 watts. but i discovered if i lower the dimmer switch to about 80%, i can closely match the brightness of the halogens. besides, the halogens have a life of 2000 hours, and they haven't been replaced in the 14 years i've lived here, so they're probably near the end of their life span, so perhaps when i originally got them they might've actually been brighter than they are now. so now when i turn on all the recessed lights in my kitchen (all 10), instead of using 500 watts of power, it now only consumes 130 watts, like turning on less than 3 halogen light bulbs. that's pretty amazing. i can't wait to get my next electricity bill!

my stilwell book arrived today. although used, it was still in pretty good condition, but it had a basement smell to it, which i hope will go away if i leave it out a few days. it's a big book - more than 600 pages - and i don't think i'll ever read it completely. i'm just interested in his time spent in chongqing (spelled "chungking" in the book using the old romanization), having visited the stilwell museum while i was there.

i went to rite aid to get more cough drops and some sun tan lotion. i'm going to the mermaid parade in coney island tomorrow and proper sun protection is essential as i'll be standing out in the sun for 5+ hours.

star market is having a sale on cherries this week, $1.99/lbs. i picked up two bags, one for me, one for my parents. although not as good as rainier cherries, they're still pretty good. i'll probably pick up another bag or two before the week is out.

if i have time, i'm looking to get a haircut at the new york chinatown while i'm there. i thought i was going to get a haircut when i was in china, but i've had very bad experiences with mainland chinese barbers. it's impossible to get a normal haircut there. everyone is either trying to give you bangs or style your hair into some sort of rooster mane.

for lunch i had a bagel, for dinner i reheated some leftover pizza on the stove for a crunchy crust.