Category Archives: Travel

Not phoning in my resolution this time

A new study is out that confirms a rising trend: This will just take a seven…salmon…(damn you, autocorrect)… This will just take a second —

Texting and driving don’t mix.

Despite widespread awareness of the dangers that distracted driving can cause, and despite horrific viral video campaigns that will make you wish for a real-life “undo” button, drivers continue to text behind the wheel.

The new research, conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, shows that the number of people who thumb messages or email from the driver’s seat has risen 50% over the past year.

So why the disconnect between the absolute sheer danger and the real-life behavior?  You might think, as with most tragic events, people erroneously think it can’t happen to them.  But that’s not quite it.  What’s happening, the researchers believe, is that people just seem to think they’re better drivers than everyone else, and they can handle the additional distraction — but the other guy can’t.

“Everyone thinks he or she is an above average driver — it’s all the nuts out there who need educating,” said Russ Rader, a spokesman for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

But I’m willing to bet Mitt Romney $10,000 that there’s also some deeper psychological phenomenon at stake, and I hope that will be the next research study the government undertakes.  My hypothesis is that there is some sort of addictive rush that comes from sending and receiving messages. Something chemical in the brain that creates an urge too great to put off, despite intellectually knowing the dangers.  That could explain why so many people support laws banning texting while driving (now illegal in 35 states), yet so many continue to do it.

Some of the other findings from the government study:

  • 90% said that when they are passengers they feel very unsafe if the driver is texting or emailing.
  • In 2010 there were an estimated 3,092 deaths in crashes affected by a wide range of driver distractions.
  • Big majorities of drivers surveyed support bans on hand-held cellphone use and texting while driving — 71 percent and 94 percent, respectively, yet 20% of all drivers and 50% of drivers 21 to 24 years old regularly text or email while driving.

If these numbers aren’t enough to jolt you into changing your behavior, perhaps the video below will. (Fair warning: it’s very difficult to watch.)

And that’s why one of my 2012 New Year’s resolutions is to put the kibosh on cell phone distractions in my car. That means, no texting, no browsing, no Words with Friends.

It can, and it will, wait.

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Posted by on December 11, 2011 in Family, Thoughts, Travel, Work


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Reflecting on The 2010 Brody World Tour: Some for work, all for fun

2010 was quite a year!  Reflecting on The 2010 Brody World Tour: Some for work, all for fun.

The numbers:

  • 32,186 miles
  • 14 cities
  • 7 states
  • 9 shows
  • 1 5.7-magnitude earthquake

The places:

  • New York City, NY
  • San Diego, CA (twice)
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Pasadena, CA
  • Chicago, IL
  • Sarasota, FL
  • Ft. Myers, FL (twice)
  • Orlando, FL
  • Colorado Springs, CO
  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Philadelphia, PA
  • Miami, FL
  • Key Largo, FL
  • College Station, TX

The shows:

  • Jason Mraz (twice)
  • Dave Matthews Band
  • Barenaked Ladies
  • Rush
  • The Hush Sound
  • Jonas Brothers (for the kiddo, of course 🙂
  • Demi Lovato
  • Selena Gomez

…and I’m probably forgetting some…

On tap for 2011 so far:

  • Colorado Springs, CO
  • Tampa, FL
  • Maui, HI
  • Bon Jovi
  • Train
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Posted by on December 31, 2010 in Family, Thoughts, Travel


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Ode to Chicago

I haven’t quite been able to put my finger on the pulse of this city.  Maybe that’s because it is at the same time so many different things.  Downtown is huge and vibrant, but without the hustle and bustle of NYC or Philly. The vibe is young and active, fiercely proud, with clear bent toward party town. Arts and culture abound, while sports, signature foods, outdoors, architecture, and natural beauty give it character. The lake is enormous. The pubs are ubiquitous. There’s not enough time to experience it all. And something tells me even if I had enough time I still wouldn’t get to know this city completely.

I think Mark Twain had it right: “It is hopeless for the occasional visitor to try to keep up with Chicago – she outgrows his prophecies faster than he can make them. She is always a novelty; for she is never the Chicago you saw when you passed through the last time.”

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Posted by on September 19, 2010 in Random, Thoughts, Travel


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San Diego and L.A. 2010

Finally back home – what a trip – both exhilarating and exhausting. Can’t believe how much we squeezed in. Some highlights:

  • Two Padres games
  • One 5.7 earthquake
  • La Jolla beach, seals, caves
  • Visiting San Diego relatives Marv, Elaine, Serena
  • Beers at The Tilted Kilt with @johnhancock61
  • Visiting med school friend Dawn
  • Gaslamp dinner at Rockin’ Baja
  • Legoland
  • The Tonight Show with Jay Leno with set tour
  • Dinner at Prosecco in Teluca Lake with relatives Penny, Les, and Briggs
  • Santa Monica pier, beach, dinner
  • Biking from Santa Monica to Venice
  • California science center
  • La Brea tar pits
  • Watching Lakers win and not starting a riot
  • Vintage car show in Pasadena Old Town
  • LA Opening of Toy Story 3 at El Capitan with Fun Zone
  • Hollywood and Highland
  • Hollywood sign
  • Pacific Coast Highway
  • Malibu Paradise Cove beach
  • Pepperdine area/dinner
  • Star party at Griffith Observatory

Oh, and I worked for 3 days, too!

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Posted by on June 20, 2010 in Family, Random, Travel


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