Skip to main content

EXO Bars: And now we got bad bugs (crickets)

Cricket for your thoughts? I jump on the sustainable food train… and fall off.

A few weeks ago, Peter clued me into a protein bar company called Exo which sells variously flavored supplement bars made from– cricket flour. I’ll eat anything, at least once, including Exo bars. When I was stationed in Korea, Peter actually visited me while on business and we had some bundegi (alt spelling beondegi), or silkworm larva, while on a hike.

Acheta domesticus or the house cricket, the fifth ingredient in Exo bars
Acheta domesticus or the house cricket, the fifth ingredient in Exo bars
Bundegi, smells faintly like popcorn, but buggier
Bundegi, smells faintly like popcorn, but buggier
Peter eating bundegi in 2006
Peter eating bundegi (or beondegi) in 2006

So how did I like the cricket bars? Read on!

Read More

NatureBox: reviewing the monthly snack service

Two years with NatureBox: lots of snacks delivered to the front door

In keeping with my philosophy of valuing time over money, in July 2013, I decided to give NatureBox a try. Why shop for snacks when someone will do that for you, find the tastiest ones, and ensure you get them on a regular basis?  NatureBox is a subscription service that delivers snacks to your front door on a regular basis. In a weird coincidence, I attended high school with one of the company’s founders, Ken Chen (considering all of the entrepreneurs that have come out of our mid-sized public school, I think it must’ve been something in the water).

Sample selection of snacks that come in a single box
Sample selection of snacks that come in a single box

So how did my experience with NatureBox go? Read on to find out!

Read More

Is the American Express Platinum Card Worth It?

A few weeks ago, I received a promotion in the mail for the American Express Platinum Card. It was perfect timing because I was recently at a restaurant that only accepted American Express and cash and I lamented the fact that I didn’t have either on hand. I’ve had an Amex Platinum card for my business for a couple of years, so I had to weigh the benefits to getting one for my personal use.

Read More

How Much Does it Cost to Own a Dog? (Medium Dog)

It was just about Christmas time back in 2010 and I didn’t get a gift for my sister yet. We were living back in Edison New Jersey, our parents had moved back to Taiwan, and we had the house to ourselves. It wasn’t like we didn’t have any pets before. We’ve had goldfish (boiled to death because we mistakenly put the tank near the fireplace), parakeets that flew away, turtles that “ran” away, and hamsters that lived to their max lifetime of 5 years. My mom was deathly afraid of any furry pets. I’m not sure how she put up with the hamsters but now that it was just my sister and I, why not get a dog like we always wanted? Read More

Science on Swole: Weightlifting Shoes

In celebration of this week’s meniscus surgery and the hopeful return of “leg day,” I’m writing about weightlifting/squatting shoes. With the anticipation that I’d be working out again, I recently picked up my 2nd pair of my preferred squat shoes, Nike Romaleos.

Why weightlifting shoes?
Co-owner of my gym (SSPT) and innumerable time national/international champion powerlifter Sioux-Z Hartwig Gary recommends that rather than having an additional session of personal training with her, most new lifters would be better off spending the $100-$200 on a pair of lifting shoes.

A good weightlifting shoe will have a flexible flat forefoot that allows good feel, and a solid heel that allows direct power transfer between the lifter and the floor. Conventional athletic shoes tend to have too much cushioning and contoured soles, which can make them unstable under weight. Weightlifting shoes will also have an elevated heel, which allows for a less acute shin angle when at the bottom of the squat, as well as helping to keep the shoulder blades over the bar when pulling from the floor.

Read More

Summer time… and you need a large patio umbrella

Meredith enjoying our back patio


Making maximum use of our existing space

We moved to Philadelphia last year in July after five years of living in DC (Capitol Hill and H Street NE). We lived in a rowhouse which did not have a backyard so we were excited that our new place had a sizable (for the city) back patio and yard. We didn’t spend a ton of time back there last year so we told ourselves that we needed to make the space more “livable.” I took some initial steps towards that goal this weekend by getting a large patio umbrella.

Read More

Blue Apron (part II): How much can eating in save for you?


Thinking about how much BA can save for you

Saving money early on in your life is really important because of compounding. However, many of us early in our careers find it hard to save because of a variety of reasons: social pressure (doing what all your friends are doing, trying to keep up with the people next door, etc), relatively low compensation rates, desire to live in areas with a high cost of living (e.g. DC, NYC, SF).

But one way of easily saving money is to find solutions that meet your needs but are much cheaper than the alternative. I previously wrote about the dinner kit service Blue Apron and in that post I said that the service saved me a lot of money. To back up that statement, here’re some number for you.

Read More

I Got 12 Buncha Crunch Boxes for Under $12

Sometime last year, they stopped selling Buncha Crunch at BAM Rose Cinemas, where I usually go to watch movies. Instead, they sell Ritter Sport Chocolate bars. I’ve been super bummed, and the last time I went, I settled for popcorn with Pepsi.

Buncha Crunch is my go-to candy whenever I go to the movies. There’s something very comforting about the waxy, 540-calorie treat. It’s got a nice crunchy texture that I prefer over the softer Goobers. I also find that it’s not as sweet as M&Ms, which I find to be too sweet when consumed by the boxful. Coupled with a Diet Coke, it is a delightful combo to partake while at the movies. Most of the time, I’ll finish the entire box by the time trailers are finished.

Read More

Peanut Butter & Co.'s Dark Chocolate Dreams and The Bees Knees

Tasty Peanut Butter and Eating 30g of Protein Within 30 Minutes of Waking Up

Since January, I’ve been pretty disciplined about eating a hearty breakfast every morning. Since reading this blog post (based on Tim Ferriss’s 4 Hour Body) on eating 30 grams of protein within 30 minutes of waking up, I thought I’d try it out. The overarching principles of this “slow carb” diet include the following:

  • Avoid “white carbohydrates”: bread, rice, potatoes, cereal, and any other carbs in these categories
  • Eat the same few meals over and over again
  • Don’t drink calories: stick mostly to water and unsweetened tea/coffee
  • Don’t eat fruit (I like this because I’m allergic to most)
  • Take one day off per week (eat whatever)

Read More