Category Archives: Art & Design

Can We Get Outlets Off The Floor?

A while back, I put in a bunch of safety outlet plates into my home in the interest of baby-proofing, and got to thinking – why on Earth are outlets generally installed less than two inches off the ground? Beyond the baby electrocution issue, you have to bend over to plug in and unplug everything, and aside from floor lamps, I can’t think of anything that benefits from the toe-high location.

Given the opportunity to build or renovate my own home in the future, I’m going to install all of the electrical outlets 1/3 of the way up the wall (standard chair rail height, usually 32-40 inches above the floor), unless someone can give me a reason not to.


  • no baby zapping, and it will keep most cords out of toddlers’ reach
  • no bending over to plug in and unplug; great for people with limited mobility
  • no need for extra long cords when using appliances or charging phones atop a table
  • reduce need to move couches or climb under tables to access the outlets behind
  • no ugly cords dangling below a wall-mounted television
  • extra/open outlets could be used for lighting with a simple plug-in sconce
  • with plugs easier to reach, people are less likely to yank the cord, reducing wear


  • Floor lamps would look funny with dangling cords
  •  Really short people might resent me

That’s really all I can come up with.  Am I missing a good reason to continue putting outlets on the floor? Is it just the risk that people would leave electronics dangling by the cord?

Fall 2013

I haven’t written anything in a while. Just in case anyone’s reading this, here’s the update:

Had a baby. Cute, right? J is amazing and healthy and happy and huge, and he has been an incredible source of joy and inspiration. I bounce all of my design, writing and other creative ideas off  him, he replies by kicking me and chuckling, and the ideas somehow grow stronger through the process. We’re working on our first collaborative piece, a children’s book called Hieronymus the Autonomous Hippopotamus.

Eating with zeal! Like father, like son.

Launched a business. I took those etched glass pieces I posted  last October and started selling them on Etsy. I’ve expanded to a range of glass pieces, hand-made bar tools, and kits to make your own bitters (hot sauce and coffee liqueur kits coming soon). I’m also hoping to sell my laser-cut plywood coffee cup cuffs, but product development has been slow. I’ve got a million other pieces in mind, and not nearly enough time to make them all, so feel free to buy a piece, and put me a few bucks closer to being able to design full time. You can also show support by “liking” us on Facebook!

The Libation Lab Etsy Shop

Giving Tours. For a over a year, I’ve been leading culinary walking tours of different San Francisco neighborhoods with a local company called Edible Excursions, and they’ve asked me to design and lead the new Craft Cocktail Tour, which has been a lot of fun.

My first day on the job as a Cocktail Tour Guide



October 2012

It’s the first of October and I just realized I still haven’t paid my rent.

I also haven’t been writing, here or elsewhere, so i thought I would post an update at least.

My August plan to be a hermit was a success:

  • I quit smoking on the first of August; still going strong.
  • I went to 38 90-minute yoga classes within the month of August.
  • I rarely left the house and spent little money.
Maybe I went too long without spending money, because I strangely stoked about a bunch of new stores opening in SF this month. First off, there is a Target opening two blocks from my office, which is the first in the city, to my knowledge. Most people might find this offensive, but I am thrilled to be able to buy the basics at a reasonable price without taking a BART train to the ‘burbs. The other two are Japanese chains, Muji for design-forward home goods that are unbranded and reasonably priced, and Uniqlo, which seems to be the Japanese equivalent of H&M with a cult following. All of their ads are for $10 jeans in every color of the rainbow.
I think I will go back to being a spendthrift hermit for much of October. I am deep into a number of new projects and really should be putting my energy there.Foremost is a new line of upcycled/upscale drinking accessories, mostly from reclaimed glass that I am designing and etching to make conversation pieces for the home bar. Below is the Drinker’s Dictionary Decanter and the Whiskey On The Rocks decanter and glass combo. I’m working on a number of different bottles, flasks and other curiosities that I will be posting soon, either on Etsy, or my own online shop very soon.