Adventures in Lighting Procurement

So – I finally accomplished one of my weekly goals, but it hasn’t been easy.  My beloved desk lamp croaked a few weeks ago, and I was left with sub-par lighting conditions in my work area.  Something needed to be done.

Quietly I planned to venture forth to Ikea.  But I loathe that place.  “You’ll be fine, you’re just there for a lamp…” I caught myself thinking at one point…

Then I remembered how this journey ended for Boromir...
Then I remembered how this journey ended for Boromir…

I started shopping around a bit online, but was deterred by shipping costs.  Eventually, I settled on Staples, where I found the lamp of my dreams.  It had a built-in ocular enhancement array, and a circular all-spectrum bulb to cut down on shadow.  It even had a massive arm, so I could position it wherever I wanted it to be on the table.

Aside: The whole process noted above took 2 weeks.

On my way to the cash, I stopped by the poorly marked “Computers” section, to see if there was anything on-sale.  This is a somewhat regular occurrence for me, as I’ve been kind of loosely ‘on the market’ since my last gaming  computer died.  It was a venerable machine that underwent a mid-life retrofit in 2010, and a memory purge in 2012.  It finally gave up the ghost around Christmas 2014, and I’ve really missed having it (or something like it) around.  I’ve been gaming on my work laptop since then, which frankly isn’t the best for that kind of thing (DAMNED INTEGRATED GRAPHICS).


There were literally 4 towers just sitting there, hardly the hay-days of computing when you only see 4 computers for sale at Staples.  That’s when I did a double-take.


I kind of knew at that point I was in for a difficult evening.  I promptly called my wife to see if I could secure funds for an impulse buy.  The added urgency of the sale closing at 9:00pm didn’t help things at all.

…I had been planning on building my own computer, but the parts often wound up being around $1,000 which is intimidating in the realm of our current financial position.

This thing had similar specs to one I would build myself (in fact, it features a better processor than I would have bought for myself), leaving only the video card behind the market.  Video Cards represent the first piece of hardware to be upgraded at mid-life anyways…  You can’t upgrade a processor as effectively, may as well scrap it and move on with a new motherboard…



Aside: The above process took approximately 2.5 hours.

In fairness to the Mrs., I did have an opportunity to talk things through in detail with her, and we decided we could fit this expense in if I were to pare down the budget in other areas.  The prime target being my hobby budget.  Meaning, forced abstinence from purchasing anything hobby related (except for paint!) for the next 6-7 months with the understanding that I spent an average of $100 per month, which is more or less appropriate.

So here's everyone!
Given that my painting queue is so large, this may not actually be a bad thing.

SO.  Next kit I buy will probably be in August/September 2016, barring exceptional circumstances.  Totally worth it?  I HOPE SO!

Aside:  The ironic thing is that the lamp blew up within .025s of me having plugged it in.  LOL.

Never a dull moment in Oakenland, I guess.

Cheers all!  Catch you soon.

8 Replies to “Adventures in Lighting Procurement”

  1. 2 words: ott lite. Also i feel your pain. I have to be supervised at the hobby store, the hardware the craft stores, canadian tire, etc etc etc. Either that or make up the monetary fumbles in a equal amount of time spent shopping for shoes and other girly stuff with The Lady Inquisitor. There are some girly things i don’t complain about shopping for though 😉

    1. I popped onto Ott lite, poked around their website. Their lamp of a similar calibre of the one I just picked up is about 50% more than the one I got from staples…

      If there’s one experience I can’t stand, it’s shopping. I loathe shopping in general. I plan surgical strikes instead. I know what I’m there for, I get in, I pay, I get out. Don’t get me wrong, I love spending time with Mrs. Oak, but if she wants to go shopping with someone she calls some of her friends and leaves me at home. Which is fine by both of us. 😀

      For her, it’s about the experience of finding something new and exciting, which takes time and commitment. If I hadn’t made up my mind by the time I got to the store then chances are I didn’t need the product in the first place. XD

      1. I hear you, but keep an eye out for sales and coupons at micheals where they carry ott lites.You might tire of the bulb blowing out every couple of months. i did and after a while i ran the numbers and was like: crap I could have bought an ott lite with what i have spent on replacement bulbs for my cheap lamp o_O

      2. I’m the same way. I can do a costco run in less then 15 minutes, and an ikea run in 10. My fiance won’t come with me because she likes to look. I will look for openings and dive through them to get the items I want!

  2. Lmao dude you’re too much. What kind of graphics are you getting? 780? Some of the cards out there now-a-days are double what you paid for the whole rig! I’ll be interested to know what your specs are when all is said and done, and I fully expect a friend request on Steam!

    1. For now the 2gb card (nVidia GTX745) is a massive upgrade over the integrated cards in my work computer. In a couple of years I will likely re-evaluate my machine’s performance and see if there are any upgrades available, and probably this video card will be at the top of the heap.

      It’s weird how this machine sold for hugely under the sum of it’s parts:
      – Intel i5 4460 – $279 (Canada Computers)
      – 8gb DDR3 ~ $100 (Canada Computers or Amazon)
      – 2gb nVidia GTX 745 ~ $175 (
      – Windows 10 ~ $150
      – Case, Motherboard, cooling, power supply and other components I would have had to buy to assemble this damn thing? ~ $250?


      And I didn’t have to build it. I’ll FB message you my Steam ID 🙂

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