Friday, June 23, 2006

Time is Money

I've been thinking a lot about trade-offs in life, including the old phrase, "time is money."

In Orlando, most of the expressways are toll roads. (Unfortunately, the one I use the least is the free one.) This creates a dilemma whenever I need to get to church or friends' houses on the other side of town. On one hand, I could just fork over the cash (although it doesn't feel like cash, because I pre-pay my tolls with an E-Pass) and get somewhere much more quickly and efficiently. On the other hand, I could avoid the tolls, yet use up more in gas money and spend more time getting places.

What do I usually do? I go in spurts. When I first moved here, I took the tolls everywhere, whenever possible. But then I found some "shortcuts" to various places, and started to rethink my philosophy. For about a month, I took almost only surface streets (non-expressway), with the exception of my daily commute to work (which is much more painful when using surface streets). And then the past week or so, I'm back to using the tolls.

In all actuality, I think the tolls are the way to go...and as gas prices rise, the numbers back this theory more and more. If I'm leaving my friends' house downtown, I could take the tolls and be home in 18 minutes, having set me back $1.00 plus gas. Otherwise, I'm home 10-15 minutes later, having dealt with the stress of traffic, the additional wear and tear on my vehicle from stop lights, and spent more on gas. Is it really worth it? My conclusion is no, unless I want a change of scenery.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Soccer Mania

World Cup fever has gripped my office and my house.

When I moved to Orlando, there was a group that played soccer on Mondays and Thursdays after work. We were grateful to have four-on-four, and more often than not it was closer to three-on-three or two-on-two. On a few occasions, we had to cancel or just run drills because of lack of people.

However, something happened about three weeks ago. People started coming out to play...en masse. The IT department had a very strong showing, and people from next door (Campus Crusade for Christ) started playing. Some of the temporary summer help began work and with it, soccer. The more people played, the more word spread through the building about the soccer phenomenon. People that haven't played in years, people that have never played, MKs who grew up playing ONLY soccer, the list goes on.

The associated World Cup fever could either be a cause, or an effect, of this soccer mania. My roommate Jon sent out a bracket on Thursday for people to submit their picks for the World Cup (which started yesterday morning)...less than 24 hours later, he had over 20 brackets back! I think that we're the only office in Orlando, because of the international flavor of our building, that will lose more productivity over following the World Cup than following the NCAA men's basketball tournament.

One more indicator of the mania: my roommate and I sat and watched the entire Germany-Costa Rica game last Spanish! (Neither of us speaks a lick of Spanish.)