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Blogging my Activities ... Interests
Michael Jackson has not risen from the dead although it has been more than 3 days since he died. If you watch the news, listen to the radio, or read the papers, you might expect the great gloved one to arise from the dead similar to that last event about 2000 years ago! What gets my drawers in a bunch is this endless coverage is overshadowing the really important things going on in our lives. While MJ's death is unfortunate, it will not have a lasting affect on your life, your kid's lives, or their kid's lives.
On Friday in the wee hours of the morning under the cover of darkness the US House of Representatives (what a miss-name that is..."Representatives" - they don't represent me or most Americans these days) passed the Cap and trade bill that will adversely affect all our lives for generations. The cost of everything you buy will go up because the cost of making it will go up because the cost of energy will go up. Estimates of the annual increase in your energy bill range from a few hundred dollars to over $1500 per household! And did you know this bill will require a Federal energy inspection of your home before you try to sell it? Did you know it will implement a Federal building code that will be as onerous as the strictest code in the country ...California? Did you know it will cause twice as many job losses as it supposedly creates? I could go on and on but this is not important - what's important is Michael Jackson!! If I didn't know better, I'd think Jackson's death was a Obama conspiracy to cover up this Bill up!
Yesterday I got an e-mail with a virus in it - my anti-virus program caught it and alerted me. I looked at the data with Notepad and it became clear to me it was a virus. I really like PC-cillon, my anti-virus program, but it strips all the headers out of the e-mail so I have no way of knowing from whom it came. The only reason that is important is I'd like to advise the sender it had a virus in case they did not know - a lot of stuff I get is forwarded by people with knowledge of what might be attached. If my AV program had not caught it I still would not have to worry because my e-mail client, Pegasus, opens all my mail in a text file so that nothing that automatically execute - regular clients like Outlook or Outlook Express will not do that.
I've been getting more contacts recently about Tanzanite from my world famous website, TanzaniteAmerica.com. Two thirds are from people who have Tanzanite and want to sell it but I've also gotten contacts from potential purchasers. My plan is to hold my collection until the price goes up but at the same time I will sell if someone wants to buy now. Fortunately I'm not desperate to sell so I can wait until I get my asking price. It is good to know that my site gets a good bit of traffic because of Google searches. It was prudent of me to build this site several years ago such that now it has some age to it which is one of the ranking factors used by search engines.
John resurfaced after being out of two with some of his buddies for a few days. He came by with two pints of that great ice cream from the ice cream shop over on the beach. The interesting news as that next week he and his 'band buddies' have actually paid for time in a studio to record 3 songs. Why you ask? I'm not 100% sure but in part it will be cool just to say you've recorded studio-quality music - don't you agree? I've not heard the music yet but I'm sure I will once the recordings are done.
John asked me if I cut take a couple audio cuts from a video on YouTube. What me? Of course I can figure out how to do that so I did. There were two segments in a video about 5 minutes long that he wanted and wanted these to segments separated - one was about 2 seconds while the other was about 6 seconds. Of course I already know how to get video files from YouTube but then I had to split the audio portion out from the video which I was able to do with a tiny free utility I found. Then I had to convert the file to an MP3 file which I was able to do online. Then I downloaded a video splitter program to cut the two segments out of the video file. The results were perfect if I may say so myself.
In the process I found that Windows XP has a built in video recorder. I found a short 'how to' video showing how to change the settings in your master volume control and then open the recorder. The recorder can be brought up by typing sndrec32 in the 'run' input box. I tried this way first but the resulting audio was poor - maybe I needed to adjust something but I couldn't find it. So know you know if you ever want to record anything you can hear on your speakers including streaming audio, music, etc.
My house keepers have not been here as scheduled. When I call, I get a recording saying there is a family emergency meaning they will not be here but I don't know for how long. Frankly my house stays in good shape so for me this is not a big issue. I've already cleaned most of what they would do although I did not mop. For now I'm planning on just waiting until they return assuming they do return.
I saw something on TV advertised I simply could not believe. It was a small putting green you place in front of your toilet while doing a #2. Who on God's green earth thinks this is a good idea for a product to bring to market? And who in the hell would actually use such a thing? Americans will buy just about anything but this is really over the top. To confirm I'm not putting you on, I've put a picture up today so you can see it with your own eyes. Jeez!
Yesterday I had a bad headache day requiring me to sort of lay quite from about 4 o'clock on - I was in bed before nine. I know it was a really bad day because the strong stuff was not working. I never felt good after about noon yesterday but here it is Sunday about noon and I feel fine. My guess is I'll feel fine the rest of the day because the worst is behind me I believe - at least for this episode. Yesterday I did not take one of my meds and today I did - I wonder if there is a correlation between my headache & not taking a pill? My gut tells me there is not a connection because I get these headaches from time to time no matter what including a long time before I even started on my present meds. Hmm!
Speaking of meds we older farts are taking, I got a call from a good friend about my age yesterday and we talked about meds. This person, who shall remain anonymous, has just switched a medication but is not seeing a difference yet. Well, it's only been about 2 days since the switch and many drugs take several weeks to fully make a difference. We both agreed that continuing to take the new meds is the correct thing to do. Heck I've been testing one of my meds a month at a time as to dosage and name vs. generic brand. I hope this work out for both of us over the next few months.
The Friday Fest was canceled because of rain - at least I think it was. The clues were...(1) it was raining (2) there were no cars (3) I didn't hear music. Too bad for the folks who worked to put this together or were going to display something. I guess there will not be another event until the last Friday in July and you know where I'll be then.
My uncle Harold called back to tell me the rain function on his weather station was not working so I went out there this morning to see what I could do. By the time I got there it was working although it was not working yesterday after my morning 'fix'. I think it will be ok now because once the station gets the signal from the sensor in the first place, it is likely to continue to work. I've not got a clue as to why it didn't work yesterday when we had that rain event.
Enough with the Michael Jackson nonsense! I'm sorry for his family and friends but there is absolutely no need to repeat the same old stuff 3 days in a row. Jeez!!
John is missing in action - neither his mother or I have heard from him since the middle of last week. Not that he needs to report in but it is unusual he's not checking in because that's what he does. My guess is he's been kidnapped by the same girl as usual and taken out of town on a drunkfest. I hope I'm wrong and there is a simple answer but I fear I'm right. Why be in fear you ask - sounds normal for a 21 year old, doesn't it? No. It doesn't. A 'normal' 21 year old should and would have told somebody where he was going if he left town. Maybe I'm wrong - maybe John is in town just not around. Time will tell.
OK. I feel sorry for those who since loss as a result of Michael Jackson's death and although he was dubbed 'the king of pop', he out not be treated like a head of state. What I mean by that is the almost non-stop coverage on the news channels about his death, people who new him, albums he released, etc., etc. Due respect is appropriate but it is a rotten damn shame that media outlets (and thus the American population) are ignoring the damage being done to every American citizen - not just MJ fans - by Congress. Yesterday Congress was coming very close to pass 'cap and trade' which will put additional finical burden on everyone, even the poor, poor, pitiful poor. The only thing that comes even close to compare to the MJ Event is the tragic death of Princess Diana - the difference was she was accidental killed, was not weird, and had not been charged with child molestation. Jeez! Enough already.
It's a real shame Americans pay more attention to the MJ event or American Idle than the things Congress is doing which will adversely affect families now and for generations to come. The loss of freedoms and Hugh deficit spending will haunt you, your kids, your kid's kids and then their kids. Some conservative politician said unfortunately Americans get what they deserve because of who the voted for in the last election. Will damn it, I didn't vote for the Obama train wreck and neither did about 48% or 49% of those who did vote. But Obama is changing 100% of America as we once knew it. For the first time ever, I believe it can correctly be said that the next generation will not have it as good as we do now.
There is hope. The one thing most important to those elected to Congress is getting re-elected to Congress. If you and your friends and then their friends call their representative and say you'll work has hard as you can to see he (or she) is replaced in 2010 if he votes for cap and trade finial passage and nationalized health care. Politicians will actually listen if enough people call because they don't want to lose their precious seat in Congress. Need I say more?
Here's something funny - after my appointment with Dr. Director on Thursday, I did not take any meds on Friday except Wellbutrin and had a darn good day - a day better than some days when I do take the meds. By the way, these meds are optional based on how I feel where as Wellbutrin is not. I did have one of my bad headache days on Thursday that started just after lunch and was with me until I went to bed and still with me when I first woke up but not as bad as the previous day. This is the first time in weeks that I've had a headache like this one but it was just like others I've talked about in the past. But, on Friday I had a good day after taking just one pain pill when I got up.
The scientist in me is now wondering if there is a correlation between taking Tylenol III in the morning and having a good day without other meds? It does not make since to me that it would have a correlation but nonetheless it is interesting to note. It is still early, I'm not sure what I'll do today.
Kathryn sent me this picture of Bridget and Mike Block.
After coffee this morning I'm going to Barnes Groves office so that Tommy's office manager can notarize a couple documents for me - my new will and medical power of attorney. I already have these documents from Georgia but things have changed, I'm in a different state, and I've added years since the last time I did this - probably about 18 years ago I think. Frankly I now have fewer specific bequests although I retain some which are still important to me. Some of my art, my rolex, my jukebox, etc. I'm especially pleased to announce I graciously bequeathed all my debts to the Barnes-Brennan boys to share and share alike. Nice of me, huh?
I also do not wish to be kept alive artificially for extended periods of time if my condition is deemed to be permanent. If you don't give someone power to make decisions for you in the event you're unable to make them for yourself, the doctors by default will keep you alive sucking down any resources you may have with the ultimate outcome being the same. Some people may not know what I want so I've put it in a legal document. I'll ask Sally to notarize both documents.
The first site I've built for Kathryn is now published on the world wide web. I've sent her a link but she's not responded yet as to what she thinks about what I've done. She may not like it but I think it's a step up from her current site. Here's the old site and here is the new site. I think the text needs to be updated as well but for my first effort, I include the text and text format from here present page. I added a 'splash' page as an entry portal because I like it and no other law firm around here uses one. But 'portal' pages are just not liked by some people so I'll be interested in what Kathryn thinks.
I Went to Dr. Director yesterday to review my status and get new prescriptions. Except for the energy issue, I'm doing pretty darn good for an old fart. I got a 90 day supply of Wellbutrin and he even gave me a 90 day supply of Adderall - before it was only 30 days. I should be set to continue with the meds and perhaps even testing certain dosage like trying 30MG a couple of days instead of 20MG. I know I need to be very careful so I plan on doing just what I'm suppose to do.
One thing about the Adderall..it is very expensive. The name brand for 90 pills was $750! Damn! But if it works as I want it to over a period of time it will be worth every cent to me. I'm going to trying different times of the morning to take it, add more protein to my morning diet (usually fruit, cereal, and other carbs) and I'm going avoid a gallon of ice cream just before bed - I'll reduce it to a half gallon. There is a right combination - all I have to do is find it.
It's sad that such a talented guy like Michael Jackson died so young. I've not heard what caused his heart attach but I bet there was a cause like drugs involved. Does it strike you as a weird coincidence I'm completing the signing of my new Will & POA today. I wonder if Obama will make his birthday a national holiday?
So what does one do on a sunny hot day like yesterday? One goes to the beach which is exactly what I did after I was finished with the weather station. The good news is that there was a very nice breeze coming off the ocean which made the beach a lot more tolerable than Uncle Harold's roof! Plus, I did not to have anything on except my bathing suit. It was a beautiful day for the beach - I'm so pleased I live here in Florida where I can go over to the beach at will.
Did you hear about the new Porsche? For the first time ever (I think) they are about to release a 4 door touring Porsche - see today's picture. Actually I think it looks pretty damn good and you can surely tell it is a Porsche. I discovered this car while doing some research on the new E-class Mercedes. So here are some hard numbers: Its 114.9-inch wheelbase is longer than the BMW M5, Cadillac CTS-V and 2010 Mercedes-Benz E-Class but marginally shorter than the Audi S8 and quite a bit shorter than the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. Three models will be available: S, 4S and Turbo. Porsche's normally aspirated four-cam 4.8-liter V8 rated at 400 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque will power the S and 4S models, while the Turbo will utilize a twin-turbocharged version of the same engine rated at 500 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. Put your orders in now!
This afternoon I have an appointment with Dr. Director to update how I'm doing and to get a new prescription. The Adderall is a schedule II drug which needs a new written prescription - it can not be refilled by a doctor call-in. You can get strong opiates called in but surprisingly they are a schedule III medication - what's up with that? Is the FDA thinking Adderall is more dangerous or more likely to be abused than pain medications? I find that hard to believe, don't you? They give Adderall to adolescence kids for God sake. There is a lot of school-aged kids taking in for ADHD.
This morning after coffee I'm going over to my Uncle Harold's house to install his weather station he got for father's day. It's been a long time since I've done this so I may actually have to read the instructions. You know what they say, "If everything else fails, read the instructions". I don't anticipate a problem so we shall see.
Have you seen the new Mercedes E-class for 2010? Mercedes Benz changes their E-class design about every 6 or 7 years - the current design first came out in 2003 so it's time. My first MB was the was two designs ago, I skipped a design and then bought the one I know have. My first look at the pictures of the new design left me with a positive opinion and it will likely grow on me even more. You can still tell it's a Mercedes but it does have a newer look.
The reason I got my present car was because I liked the new design and I was tired of my older car - but I did not get the 'in between' model. There was nothing wrong with my car except it was just old kind of like I'm getting. I wish I could trade my body in for a newer model like say, Brad Pitt. My plans are to keep my present car until I get tired of it or a new design gets my attention. When I see the 2010 E-class in the flesh sort of speak, I might decide I like it. Even if I do like it, I'm a few years away from buying a newer Mercedes.
I visited with my gal-friend from high school, Charlotte Terry, yesterday about a young friend of hers that needs to come have coffee with me in the mornings. Apparently this guy needs support from others who have faced similar things as he is going through at the moment. Charlotte's plan is for me to go with her to visit him in the hospital where he ended up after some self-destructive behavior which I won't go into here. I'm not sure how open to our suggestions he will be but it certainly worth the effort.
For the first time in about two weeks we got a little rain yesterday afternoon. It was not much but something is better than nothing. It is too early to tell what today will be like and besides, weather here can change in an instant.
I'm still working on Kathryn's site - I found I needed to change some of the code for the pages to render properly both in Internet Explorer and Firefox. It's strange how the two browsers render things a bit different using the same code. The difference seems to come from the way the browsers read CSS files and not from the page file itself. To remedy the difference I just recoded each page to do what I wanted in both browsers. More detail would bore you even more I guess. I'm liking the look of her site and it damn sure is an improvement from the one she now has - I'll show it to you soon.
What am I going to do today? Well, I've not been to the beach in over a week but then again it is overcast here this morning. It looks as if the skies will clear a bit later as the sun gets higher and things warm up. And things have been warming up around here - yesterday a new record high of 102 F was set for the date. Today might be a repeat if these high clouds disappear. One thing for sure, my air conditioning seems to be running a lot of later but the good news is my house is always cool and dry.
Tomorrow morning I'm going to install a weather station for my Uncle Harold - that's Alice's dad. He was married to my mother's younger sister who died of pancreatic cancer years and years ago. Harold is doing well but ought not be climbing on roofs to set up his equipment. There is also a software installation process we need to complete so that the sensors can talk to the base station. I've not seen the weather station yet but I believe it is similar to mine.
I've almost completed a new website for Kathryn's firm, Singer & Johnston,LLC. I did all this work without asking Kathryn if she liked my layout, color scheme, and pages - I find when I ask people they want too many changes along the way. I want to get it done then let her decide if she likes it at all and if so, what changes does she want on the site. I found her present site to be rather plain - it looks to me as if the developer of the pages created extra pages just so he could charge Kathryn. I've pretty much duplicated the text although I will recommend some changes. There is a lot that can be done and I'm proud to say if we stop now with what I've already done, her site will be among the top few sites here in Vero. Most attorneys have very plain websites and in some cases, just one unimaginative page. Now let's see if Kathryn likes my work - she' out of town this week but she likely has her laptop with her in Chicago where Bridget is attending a cello camp.
The Barnes Boys are all looking forward to their Keys trip this Summer as are we all. I'm wondering just how crowded lobster mini-season will be this year with the Obama economic train wreck. Folks are out of a job or are afraid they will lose their current job. Ty who works for a bank is constantly concerned with the bank's condition and about potential lay-off's. Both Matt & Drew are probably safe in their jobs but you never know - last year Matt was laid off from Experian and now works for Equifax, a competitor. Frankly I think he liked his other job better but for now he has a good job with growth potential.
Speaking of earning money, I might do a few more websites only charge for my work this time. The more I do, the more I learn and the easier they are for me to do. As you know, I've not had formal training and everything I know is self-taught. So after the Mike Block project and Kathryn's project I'll see if something comes my way. Stay tuned.
I need not explain today's image, do I?
Damn I've been busy today and have not had time to post up until now - I just decided to take time. The morning started as usual with my coffee group but I had an impromptu meeting with a couple folks after the meeting. We had some things we needed to discuss before the regular business meeting next month. I made a decision to buy some things the group needs without having "permission" to buy these items. Sure as hell someone will think I didn't have the authority but it's always easier to ask for forgiveness than permission. No one will have an issue with what I bought but some may think I paid too much. Well fine...then you go buy them next time. I spent the better part of 90 minutes on Google trying to find these things.
As soon as I got back, Cellist Mike had some updates and changes he wanted to his website. One of the changes was in his PhotoAlbum page I modeled after the one I have. He wanted me to add a navigation bar and limit the picture folders to just one. All this is written in .PHP but I did figure out how to inject some HTML coding for the navigation and to add the .CSS style sheet for this new menu bar. I think I'm done with the exception of making some links hot , titling each page, and adding META tags if Mike even wants tags added. I looked at the sites on his 'Links' page and for the most part none have META tags - what's up with that?
The lunch yesterday with Tommy and his sons was very enjoyable. We had fried chicken, black-eyed beans, rice, and poll beans. All this is the kind of food Tommy & I had as we were growing up. As kids, we always ate at home and never went out. Then again, that was so long ago fast food had not been developed yet!
TB asked that I go to a foreclosure auction for him because he's too well known in this community and didn't want to let anyone know he might have interest in the properties being offered. Frankly he doesn't seem inclined to be interested I think it is curiosity more than anything. So I was most happy to be his surrogate at the auction.
The auction was to start at 11 AM and it started at 11 AM - no waiting for courthouse employees. There were 5 properties to be auctioned - all but one were cancelled including the one I was to watch. The one property that was auction was sold in 15 seconds for $100 - I have no idea what that was all about. I'm thinking the person who holds the mortgage just bought the house but I'm not sure. What is interesting to me is these auctions are held several times a month when in Atlanta they were only held on the first Tuesday of each month. I'll go back again sometime - I might just learn something useful.
This picture was taken last year in Islamorada.
It's Father's day - a day to recognize and honor fathers all over the world including DutchieLand. I'd like to send out a warm Happy Father's Day to all you dads out there but especially to my little Dutchie ..PappaSyp. Say, isn't it getting close to the time when Sjak will give you another rug rat? Best of wishes to all dads including the ones that may not know they are a Dad.
To celebrate the day, the Barnes Boys flew in from Atlanta this weekend to join their Florida brother, Ty, and celebrate with Tommy today. TB is 'cooking' a lunch for all of them and has invited me to join them. He's got good old Southern food like friend chicken, black beans 7 rice, and other goodies. I'll be headed over about mid-day. TB is not going to miss an opportunity to clean the boats, stage for the Keys trip, and general work on this, that, and the other thing. Why am I not surprised? I told Tommy that John will be more than happy to help him to get ready for the trip but why would you want to ruin a perfectly happy relaxing day by not organizing?
John will be through with his current school session by the end of the week. The next challenge is to push through his acceptance to FSU for this Fall session. I think the odds are now in his favor but you never know until you know. I'm not really sure what John is going to do between now and our trip - there is not time to get a job as such if he'll be leaving to head south in 3 weeks. Perhaps I could pimp him out to some John's Island lonely women still here during the Summer? What do you think?
I have an appointment with Dr. Director this week the purpose of which is to review how the meds are working. I'm beginning to think that perhaps trying a different type of Adderall might be useful rather than staying on the XR version I'm on now. I don't mind testing and testing again - I just want a combination that works for me. There is absolutely no doubt things are better now than they were before I started seeing Dr. Director but I'm not convinced they are as good as they can be. More to follow.
Kathryn is out of town to take Bridget to some sort of string camp in Chicago I believe. Bridget goes to these camps every Summer and in most cases to more than one camp. I can't imagine anything more boring than a cello string camp but those who enjoy that sort of thing would likely be very bored at a web design coding camp. After this trip, Bridget goes on another trip for six weeks I believe meaning she'll miss the Keys this year.
My next project is to work on a new site for Kathryn - her website lacks in imagination and does not stand out from the others in the legal field. In fact, most attorneys in Vero have rather un-imaginative sites most of which are boring templates provide by the Yellow pages or some legal association. I'm not sure which direction I'll want to try for Kathryn so I'm going to first do my research.
Starr is back from a brief trip to see one of her school friend who swallowed a bunch of pills she was taking under a doctor's prescription. They were some sort of anti-depression pills I think which when taken as prescribed are relatively safe but when you swallow a whole bottle...look out. Starr's friend is in a comma but her body is doing ok - it's her mind that is still not functioning properly. Too bad people have these feelings of wanting to end it all. I found out last Thursday that a college fraternity brother of mine committed suicide last week - I wish I knew more about what happened but I don't. I'm wondering if drugs or alcohol were involved?
I'm ready to post a link to Mike Block's new site now that I have it up on his server space and not mine. You can look at it here at MikeBlock.net. He asked for some things I would not have done if it were my site but it is not - it is his site so he's the one that needs to be happy. The 'orange' color on links, the title image, etc was selected because that's the color you'll find on his new CD, Words R Words - click on the 'Music' link to see the album cover. I think I've done all he wants me to do for now but there will likely be additions or edits in the future.
It was late last night when I loaded his photo album under the 'Pics" link and he's not seen it yet. He had asked for a "simple" page with some pictures - I gave him more. Using my PhotoAlbum script from BillsView, I edited it to make it his album then loaded all the files - this album has a lot oh .PHP files to make it work just like BillsView has a lot of .PHP files for the daily posting and comments to work. I'm anxious to hear his response when he sees it - I know he'll be very surprised in that this album is a Loy more than he requested.
It was a hot day here in Vero yesterday but I did not go to the beach because I wanted to work on Mike's site until I finished it. There is not much in the way of a breeze these days so when you go outside it is HOT. It's hot in the Keys too but there you don't need to wear much and there's a pool - around here I need to wear shots and a t-shirt or I'll attract all the hot women of Vero. Well maybe some of the hot women 75 years old or older which is a large potion of the population down here. I'm looking forward to next month's trip to Islamorada.,p>John called me last night as he was driving back from FSU having taken the last exam he needs in order to be admitted. He passed the exam but that in itself does not mean he will be admitted but it does represent the last hoop he needs to jump through at the moment. I feel very confident he will be admitted for the Fall unless all his 'stuff' gets put together too late for this to happen. He talked with a dude in admissions that assures him he'll rush things along to meet the deadline. I'm optimistic.
Last night Obama was at a news media dinner in which he did a stand-up as is the custom with the POTUS (CIA code for President of The Untied States). I watch some of it and I have to admit he was funny. His skills in reading what is written for him applies to jokes as well - he did better than President Bush ever did while in office. For a joke to be truly funny, it must have an element of truth in it. All his jokes had elements of truth but sadly the real truth is not funny one damn bit. He's very good at reading and can be funny but his polices and practices are driving our freedoms into the ground. His policies are wrecking the economy both now but especially for the future generation. His policies suck.
There's a joke that goes like this: "I'm from the Government and I'm here to help." When has this government done anything efficiently or as effective as private enterprise with the exception of keeping a standing Army, Air Force, and Marines? Trying to get something done through the government is and always has been a joke no matter who's in office. Just think about the long lines at the Post Office, License Office, or try applying for government aid, grants, or help. Obama didn't create all this but what he is doing is adding more to it by taking over the banks, car companies, and worst of all, our health care. Be afraid boys and girls, be very afraid.
It's a strange thing but I'm already looking beyond our trip to Islamorada and to September when college football will begin again. A couple months back I was looking to the Keys but as that gets closer I'm looking beyond. Why is that? I'm certainly will enjoy the Keys as I always do but why can't I be just focused on that trip for now? Oh, well...this attitude is not new with me, I've been this way before.
So how did my self-testing go with the meds on Tuesday you ask. Well, I believe more was definitely better for me but not twice as I thought it might be. So yesterday I went back to my 'normal' dosage and for the most part the day was good. So this morning I'm going to increase again to see what today brings. It is clear to me I can't make a judgment with testing on more than just one day or two - we all have good & bad days so to get a more accurate assessment I'll need more testing.
Here's the whole point - things are better than they were before I started seeing Dr. Director but not as 'normal' as I'd like things to be. Normal here being the desire & energy to do things like I once used to do. Maybe all of this is part of being an old fart, you think? Well I don't and I'm willing to be a lab rat as long as it takes. BTW, I know of a solution that does help but it is not safe especially for someone like me. At least now I don't have any sensation at all of wanting more of this or that but just a sense that I may need something a bit different. Stay tuned.
Remember my restless body events? Well, I find that while I do not have a bad condition by any stretch of the imagination, I do find that a hot soaking bath just before bedtime is very good for me. When I don't take a bath just before bedtime I wake up in a hour or two and then take one to go back to sleep. This is troubling for me because it breaks up my pattern of a once - a - week shower. Damn...now I actually get wet once a day. I'm wondering how long this will last? The good news is it works, does not cause harm, and I don't mind doing it in fact, I even like to do it most of the time.
My house keepers and lawn maintenance guy are missing in action this week. Both were to be here on Monday but neither have shown up yet which is unusual for both. Usually I get a call about changing dates or times but not a call yet. I just hope they are ok and nothing has happened to them.
It sure was foggy when I got up this morning - I could see much farther than to the Cuban coffee shop at the corner. Of course as the sun came up the fog was "burned away" which by the way is not what happens - there is no "burning" going on. So what does happen old wise one you ask? Well, now that you asked I'll tell you. As the sun rises, it heats the air which in turn causes molecules to move around faster which in turn gives more space for the water molecules to go such that they are not compressed. That by the way, is why warm air can hold more water vapor molecules which when allowed to rise - warm air rises because it is less dense - will condense as the air gets into colder temperatures and BINGO...rain. I should be a science teacher for 7th and 8th grade kids.
I don't like LOUD! I don't like loud people, loud music, loud resturants...I just don't like loud. So why to I like the band Green Day (the lead singer is wierd)? What's up with that I'm wondering - this is not the stereotypical music I listen to these days. Typical I enjoy a single artist with an acoustical guitar singing a sing who's words I can understand - I listen to "adult Contemporary" on the cable or over the internet. Well, I like what I like so that's just how it is. BTW, do you boys and girls know I loath rap?!!
I want to share something I felt compelled to post.
Although I'm not the author, I believe every word in this letter - pass it along.
AN OPEN LETTER TO OUR NATION'S LEADERSHIP
I'm a home grown American citizen, 53, registered Democrat all my life. Before the last presidential election I registered as a Republican because I no longer felt the Democratic Party represents my views or works to pursue issues important to me. Now I no longer feel the Republican Party represents my views or works to pursue issues important to me. The fact is I no longer feel any political party or representative in Washington represents my views or works to pursue the issues important to me. There must be someone. Please tell me who you are. Please stand up and tell me that you are there and that you're willing to fight for our Constitution as it was written. Please stand up now. You might ask yourself what my views and issues are that I would horribly feel so disenfranchised by both major political parties. What kind of nut job am I? Will you please tell me?
Well, these are briefly my views and issues for which I seek representation:
One, illegal immigration. I want you to stop coddling illegal immigrants and secure our borders. Close the underground tunnels. Stop the violence and the trafficking in drugs and people. No amnesty, not again. Been there, done that, no resolution. P.S., I'm not a racist. This isn't to be confused with legal immigration.
Two, the TARP bill, I want it repealed and I want no further funding supplied to it. We told you no, but you did it anyway. I want the remaining unfunded 95% repealed. Freeze, repeal.
Three: Czars, I want the circumvention of our checks and balances stopped immediately. Fire the czars. No more czars. Government officials answer to the process, not to the president. Stop trampling on our Constitution and honor it.
Four, cap and trade. The debate on global warming is not over. There is more to say.
Five, universal healthcare. I will not be rushed into another expensive decision. Don't you dare try to pass this in the middle of the night and then go on break. Slow down!
Six, growing government control. I want states rights and sovereignty fully restored. I want less government in my life, not more. Shrink it down. Mind your own business. You have enough to take care of with your real obligations. Why don't you start there.
Seven, ACORN. I do not want ACORN and its affiliates in charge of our 2010 census. I want them investigated. I also do not want mandatory escrow fees contributed to them every time on every real estate deal that closes. Stop the funding to ACORN and its affiliates pending impartial audits and investigations. I do not trust them with taking the census over with our taxpayer money. I don't trust them with our taxpayer money. Face up to the allegations against them and get it resolved before taxpayers get any more involved with them. If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, hello. Stop protecting your political buddies. You work for us, the people. Investigate.
Eight, redistribution of wealth. No, no, no. I work for my money. It is mine. I have always worked for people with more money than I have because they gave me jobs. That is the only redistribution of wealth that I will support. I never got a job from a poor person. Why do you want me to hate my employers? Why ‑‑ what do you have against shareholders making a profit?
Nine, charitable contributions. Although I never got a job from a poor person, I have helped many in need. Charity belongs in our local communities, where we know our needs best and can use our local talent and our local resources. Butt out, please. We want to do it ourselves.
Ten, corporate bailouts. Knock it off. Sink or swim like the rest of us. If there are hard times ahead, we'll be better off just getting into it and letting the strong survive. Quick and painful. Have you ever ripped off a Band‑Aid? We will pull together. Great things happen in America under great hardship. Give us the chance to innovate. We cannot disappoint you more than you have disappointed us.
Eleven, transparency and accountability. How about it? No, really, how about it? Let's have it. Let's say we give the buzzwords a rest and have some straight honest talk. Please try ‑‑ please stop manipulating and trying to appease me with clever wording. I am not the idiot you obviously take me for. Stop sneaking around and meeting in back rooms making deals with your friends. It will only be a prelude to your criminal investigation. Stop hiding things from me.
Twelve, unprecedented quick spending. Stop it now.
Take a breath. Listen to the people. Let's just slow down and get some input from some nonpoliticians on the subject. Stop making everything an emergency. Stop speed reading our bills into law. I am not an activist. I am not a community organizer. Nor am I a terrorist, a militant or a violent person. I am a parent and a grandparent. I work. I'm busy. I'm busy. I am busy, and I am tired. I thought we elected competent people to take care of the business of government so that we could work, raise our families, pay our bills, have a little recreation, complain about taxes, endure our hardships, pursue our personal goals, cut our lawn, wash our cars on the weekends and be responsible contributing members of society and teach our children to be the same all while living in the home of the free and land of the brave.
I entrusted you with upholding the Constitution. I believed in the checks and balances to keep from getting far off course. What happened? You are very far off course. Do you really think I find humor in the hiring of a speed reader to unintelligently ramble all through a bill that you signed into law without knowing what it contained? I do not. It is a mockery of the responsibility I have entrusted to you. It is a slap in the face. I am not laughing at your arrogance. Why is it that I feel as if you would not trust me to make a single decision about my own life and how I would live it but you should expect that I should trust you with the debt that you have laid on all of us and our children. We did not want the TARP bill. We said no. We would repeal it if we could. I am sure that we still cannot. There is such urgency and recklessness in all of the recent spending.
From my perspective, it seems that all of you have gone insane. I also know that I am far from alone in these feelings. Do you honestly feel that your current pursuits have merit to patriotic Americans? We want it to stop. We want to put the brakes on everything that is being rushed by us and forced upon us. We want our voice back. You have forced us to put our lives on hold to straighten out the mess that you are making. We will have to give up our vacations, our time spent with our children, any relaxation time we may have had and money we cannot afford to spend on you to bring our concerns to Washington. Our president often knows all the right buzzword is unsustainable. Well, no kidding. How many tens of thousands of dollars did the focus group cost to come up with that word? We don't want your overpriced words. Stop treating us like we're morons.
We want all of you to stop focusing on your reelection and do the job we want done, not the job you want done or the job your party wants done. You work for us and at this rate I guarantee you not for long because we are coming. We will be heard and we will be represented. You think we're so busy with our lives that we will never come for you? We are the formerly silent majority, all of us who quietly work , pay taxes, obey the law, vote, save money, keep our noses to the grindstone and we are now looking up at you. You have awakened us, the patriotic spirit so strong and so powerful that it had been sleeping too long. You have pushed us too far. Our numbers are great. They may surprise you. For every one of us who will be there, there will be hundreds more that could not come. Unlike you, we have their trust. We will represent them honestly, rest assured. They will be at the polls on voting day to usher you out of office. We have cancelled vacations. We will use our last few dollars saved. We will find the representation among us and a grassroots campaign will flourish. We didn't ask for this fight. But the gloves are coming off. We do not come in violence, but we are angry. You will represent us or you will be replaced with someone who will. There are candidates among us when he will rise like a Phoenix from the ashes that you have made of our constitution.
Democrat, Republican, independent, libertarian. Understand this. We don't care. Political parties are meaningless to us. Patriotic Americans are willing to do right by us and our Constitution and that is all that matters to us now. We are going to fire all of you who abuse power and seek more. It is not your power. It is ours and we want it back. We entrusted you with it and you abused it. You are dishonorable. You are dishonest. As Americans we are ashamed of you. You have brought shame to us. If you are not representing the wants and needs of your constituency loudly and consistently, in spite of the objections of your party, you will be fired. Did you hear? We no longer care about your political parties. You need to be loyal to us, not to them. Because we will get you fired and they will not save you. If you do or can represent me, my issues, my views, please stand up. Make your identity known. You need to make some noise about it. Speak up. I need to know who you are. If you do not speak up, you will be herded out with the rest of the sheep and we will replace the whole damn congress if need be one by one. We are coming. Are we coming for you? Who do you represent? What do you represent? Listen. Because we are coming. We the people are coming.
After coffee yesterday I went to get a haircut...well actually I had 5 hairs cut. This time I wanted what little hair I have left cut on the short side because it simply can not be combed. So the lady barbara used a # 8 guard on her electric shears and cut all over. I've not drawn a conclusion yet as to whether or not I like it but no matter what I think, it will grow back for a future change.
when I got back to the house I had an e-mail from Mike about the changes he wanted and he wanted changes on every page - I was not surprised. the good news is that I got a single e-mail with the requests instead of 150 e-mails with one request per e-mail - that for me is death by a thousand paper cuts. I was able to start on the first page and then proceed through each page. I used Dreamweaver to do the editing - that is one heck of a cool program. Each time I use it a learn a bit more and become more comfortable with the application. It is really cool and alas, I bet only Syp understands what I mean.
One thing that really helped my editing is that I created to cascading style sheets (CSS) for the pages so I could in some case make a change on every page but just changing one thing in the style sheet. This made changing the text font, spacing between text lines, indenting paragraphs very easy. I can charge the color of any and everything the same way. So although I'm not going to charge Mike for my work, I did get some valuable experience out of the process. I think I'm about to complete the work for Mike - I hope I'm about to complete the work.
I visited with Starr yesterday about this, that, and the other thing. She's not working at present but is going to the gym everyday to do aerobic workouts - she's determined to lose some weight the right way through exercise and proper eating habits. Actually she has inspired me to start walking again because I explained how good a daily routine can be yet I'm not in one. So, I think I'll start again - stay tuned.
Matt is going to install a new computer for his grandparent - the one they have is so old the hard drive is only 20GB! Heck, I have flash drives that are almost as big - one is 16BG. When looking into a new Dell desktop, the smallest hard drive you can buy these days is 320GB. These machines get faster with more storage all of the time although frankly Matt's grandparents have no need for such capabilities. Basically the send &receive e-mail, storage pictures, and surf a bit which by the way is probably what most users do with their machines if not used for work. I'll loan Matt one of my external hard drives so he can transfer files from the old machine to the new one. I think Matt might just go to Wally world and buy a Dell - I think they are sold there now.
I got up at O'darkhundred this morning so I could watch the launch of the space shuttle before sunrise. If you've never seen a shuttle launch when it's dark, you are really missing one of the most awesome sights I've ever seen. Which brings to mind one of the other awesome sights I've ever seen. When I was sitting in a Boeing 767 at 35,000 feet headed for Nepal I'll never ever forget looking outside the window and remarking out loud to Betty that I've never seen clouds at over 30,000 feet before and then it hit me - those 30,000 feet clouds were not clouds at all, they were mountains!!!! That Monet is one of those moments that will be with me until my life force leaves this body it's currently occupying and rejoins the infinite amount of information and energy that ebbs and flows through out the cosmos. By the way, the shuttle did not go up this morning and has been postponed until July 11th. I'll be watching then.
Today's saying is just too funny to me!
As promised, I went to the beach yesterday - it was virtually empty between Con and Jaycee beach along the boardwalk. It was like a lake but I still have not tossed my hot body into that cold water - cold to me at least. I'm waiting for the 85+ degree what found around Alligator reef. I've noticed that I seem to start to get red in a short period of time which is unusual for me. Then while doing some Adderall research I found this:
Adderall XR Extended-Release Capsules may cause you to become sunburned more easily. Avoid the sun, sunlamps, or tanning booths until you know how you react to Adderall XR Extended-Release Capsules. Use a sunscreen or wear protective clothing if you must be outside for more than a short time.What's up with that and who knew? I was looking into the product based on a question I received yesterday concerning Adderall and interaction with other meds. There of course are other meds that you should not mix unless under the direction of your doctor. I only regularly take the two meds - Wellbutrin and Adderall although I skip Adderall some days just to see what happens.
Today I'm going to be a lab rat again testing myself with respect to my meds dosage. After the additional research I did yesterday I'm thinking I might need a higher dosage to get the energy back that I'm seeking. It seems every time I go up in dosage I get a little better without feeling as if I'm "on" something which is what I prefer - I was "on" enough adult beverages in the past that I need not go down that path again! I'll report back tomorrow.
TB came by yesterday to fetch me for a ride out to Barnes #38 in oder to inspect things. The grove is in poor shape but still recoverable if someone feeds and mows it - it got fit bad by that hurricane called Faye which left a lot of standing water. Citrus trees need just the right amont of water - too little and they will die but too much and they will die as well. It's like the 3 bears porage - water has to be just right. The good news is that all these requirements for a healthy grove are on the way...details later.
Something funky is happing with this computer which has gotten me puzzled - imagine that, me puzzled. Yesterday I was trying to download a program but the download seemed to stop at 99% complete - what's up with that? I tried several different 'mirors' but the result was always the same. The only thing that I could figure out is that the little download bar showing how much has been download and still remains to be dowloade incorrected assested the size of the file. By that I mean the progress bar thought it was downloading 16 MB when indeed it was much more. The download sites said the size of the file was about 16MB but the now installed program was 85MB. It was a media player that I'm hoping will play all media so I don't need 4 or 5 media players including DivX player, QuickTime, Real Player, and a player for .FLV files. Media players are big, think they should all start at boot, are invasive, gather information I don't like, ansd are a general pain in the ass. I'll report later on how well this appliocation works.
Today I'm going to edit the 9 pages I produced for Mike - he sent me an e-mail overnight requesting some changes & editing although I've not read it all as yet so I don't know how much time this will take. I'm hoping all the changes are minor although what
It's Monday and I'm confused - where are my house keepers? Is this the wrong week for them to come or are they missing in action? I get my weeks confused sometimes which unfortunately seems to be a re-occurring theme. The only issue was I wanted to do something else after coffee this morning but came back here to wait for them. I'm not going to wait any longer because I think I got my weeks mixed up.
Yesterday I started to watch a movie called "Transformers" - what a whole lot of nothing that movie is. Why I watched it as long as I did before changing channels is beyond me - I guess I was hoping it would change and get good. Wrong! It was more of the same old same old kid's stuff. It was a big 2.5 hour infomercial for the transformer toys.
I'm done with my initial phase of Mike's site - it got laborious after awhile. He wanted too many links without enough new content in my opinion but I did what he asked. I've decided I'll give my work to him as being a favor from Kathryn although he did offer to pay me something. It is my belief that Kathryn and the young folks in Vero interested in stringed instruments will be the ultimate beneficiary. Normally I would charge someone I don't know but here I'll consider this my donation to the cause. I will expect reimbursement for out of pocket expenses like buying the domain name and server space. This is also a way for me to demonstrate that conservatives can be generous even when not forced by the liberals. I don't object to doing things like this, I just object to being told by liberals I must do things like this.
Something interesting came up out of this project for which I'm most pleased - I used my Adobe Dreamweaver for the very first time to do my final editing. As I build a page I leave a lot of code on it I'm not going to use but was once being tested. The dreamweaver application allows me to edit the page and then see the edit immediately - this is damn cool. All this time I've been editing in notepad, closing notepad, saving the changes in notepad, then opening a new window to see what I've done. This process is very time consuming when Dreamweaver makes it much easier. Let me hasten to add, learning how to code the old fashion way makes it much easier now to know what to edit. The long and short of this is I'm likely to make more use of Dreamweaver on my next project at least for editing.
It's been beautiful here but I've not been to the beach since last week. I think I might go for a hour later this morning. By the time we head South to the Keys, I should be ready.
I expect to hear from John later today after he's done what he needs to do in the way of jumping through more FSU hoops. My concern is he may have waited too long before starting his hoop jumping. The world will not come to an end but his ultimate graduation from FSU will be pushed back a term if he's not admitted for the Fall term. We should know before the Keys trip or maybe even sooner. He is going to up there this Fall no mater what even if it is to take just one course at the community college there where he has been admitted. Stay tuned.
Yesterday was a bad day for me - I was tired all day long and didn't 'feel' just right. It was Saturday so I decided not to take an Adderall capsule in my continuing effort to test how I do with and without the meds. Funny but today I did not take an Adderall capsule either but I feel better and have more energy - what's up with that? I know I have better energy with Adderall but I'm not sure how much good it is really doing. For example, if I could feel all day like I do now without Adderall, I would not take it at all. Then again I'm not clear at all as to why this day is better than yesterday.
Another thing...I'm not sure I'm taking the right dosage of Adderall to be most beneficial to me. So, I've run a test with 30mg of XR but really didn't see much difference from 20mg of XR. So I think I'll try 40mg of XR to see what that does for me. Because there are days I do not take it at all, I can double up for a couple days with my one month prescription. Could it be I would do better on IR (immediate release) instead of the extended release? Maybe I'll ask for a test of that version for a couple weeks after all, it is the IR I got from the Captain that got me headed in this direction in the first place. I'm still a lab rat being tested.
I've made good progress on Mike Block's site and should be ready to publish the first effort in the next day or so. One thing that took me forever it seems is his "Links" page where I had to code 49 different URL's to open in a new window - there is no method to streamline this process. I must have spent 2 or more hours on the coding and of course I'd make a typing error here and there or I'd leave out a character which would cause the link to fail. Jeez...he sure has a lot of friends in the music business with websites. Some of the sites are very well done while some are basic. Nonetheless, I should have a basic site for Mike soon.
Although I've not checked with Kathryn, I think the best thing to do is publish Mike's site as his own then put a sub domain for the Vero thing Kathryn is doing. Something like "verocamp.mikeblock.net". I'll check with her about that this coming week after all, it was her request that got me in this effort in the first place and it was for the Vero Summer String Camp next Summer. This way Kathryn will have a separate URL and Mike will have his basic site.
The weather has been beautiful this whole past week - I hope it stays this way for the invasion of the Barnes Boys next weekend so they can go fishing. Unfortunately the long range forecast calls for thunder boomers and rain next weekend but then again, the forecasters can always get a 24 hour projection right. More will be revealed about Thursday I'm guessing.
John is to arrive back in Vero today from his cross country trip from the Left Coast. I'm anxious to hear about his trip - I think this is the first real long driving trip for him. The longest trip before this one was our drive from Atlanta to Islamorada in one 12 hour day. I hate to drive although when I was John's age I loved to drive. Now I'd rather take a Gulfstream G-4 to my destination but alas, I can't afford that means of travel. I wonder if there is service to the Keys out of Ft. Pierce? Tomorrow John will have to jump through several hoops some of which are on fire to even have a chance to get admitted for the Fall session at FSU. It seems tomorrow -June 15th - is the deadline to register for this and that so as the paperwork can get to FSU in time for review. I have confidence he'll get it done if the outcome is in his hands tomorrow. I hope he does not run into some dimwit that is clueless.
For those of you who are wondering, I'm able to report that the water at Vero's Beach is still cold IMO. For the first time this year I went to the water's edge to test it - it was cold to me. Of course there are people in it but I'm not ready to make that plunge just yet. If I did get it I guess I'd get used to it as I do when the pool in The Palms is cold after a rain but I'm not ready to test that theory. This all came up because the beach is so very very nice these days. It is calm, glassy-like with waves just on the shore. It is also getting very hot over there with the temperatures here getting into the 90's. I'm taking today off from beach duty - we'll just have to see what tomorrow brings.
WARNING - I received a notice that the Barnes Boys will be invading Vero next weekend. I'll alert the local law enforcement authorities to be especially diligent while they are in town. If all the stars align as they have of recent, maybe they'll get a chance to take TB fishing on his boat - the last time an effort was made it was too rough. I must say, the ocean has been looking great for a fishing trip. In fact, it might be just a bit too calm - my best fishing has always been on days with a slight chop. Then again, they nay just plan on spending their time here terrorizing the good people of Vero.
Do you have the useful program called Secunia installed on your computer for those of you using Windows? It checks for updates on your installed programs so as to alert you when an update is available. This will keep your programs patched and thus more secure from would be computer virus or hackers. I'm pleased I discovered the program and would suggest you install it if it's not already installed on your Windows machine. It is free and easy to use.
This program has protected me in another way as well. I received a e-mail from someone I trust that sent me to a website to view a video. When I clicked on the video to view it I got a notice saying I need to upgrade my Adobe flash browser utility to view the video with a place I could check for a download and install. But wait...my system was up to date so why am I getting this notice I asked. This of course made me very suspicious so I 'Gooled' the version of Adobe it suggested I needed to find that the 'upgrade' was a virus. I even checked the Adobe site to confirm there was no such flash update. So you see, even thought it did not tell me about an update Secunia should have alerted me if one was available. This is really a great little utility to have. I alerted the sender of the e-mail and such confirmed her anti virus software discovered it was a virus.
I've been making progress on the Mike Block site - I expect to have the first pages completed this weekend. There will need to be a lot of editing because Mike has not supplied all the text he is going to supply. And I expect he'll want to change some things when he first reviews the pages. I decided not to upload any of the pages again until they are all done for the first go-around. It would be death by a thousand paper cuts as I'm sure I'd get e-mails about changes all the time as I did on the first page. Mike is like most people I've helped - he'll see something he wants changed, send me an e-mail, and then 10 minutes later find another and then another request for change. I want him to look at all the pages, decide what he wants changed, and then send me one e-mail with all the change requests instead of a hundred separate e-mails. I'm putting the pages together as he requested but this is not they way I would build the site without direction. Oh well, he's the one who wants it this way so I'll do what I can to please him.
Anyone for a blackened dolphin sandwich?
Of late I've been busy working on several projects and simply have not taken the time to post everyday - I missed yesterday. You see I wake up with some ideas with regard to a project and then I delve right into them without posting first. Then the next thing I know I'm tired and ready to veg [sic] in front of my TV. The next thing I know it's morning again and the cycle repeats itself. It is tough being me with all these creative ideas bouncing around in my massive brain. Stop it...I can hear you laughing now.
For example... someone I've helped in the past was interested in a marketing program called Talk Fusion. This is a new technology in that it allows videos to be played in your e-mail without first clicking onto another like - trouble is that only works for web-based e-mails and will not work if you heck your e-mail via an e-mail client like Outlook, MSN Mail, or even in Gmail. It does come with a well designed marketing package with target clients being businesses that wish to send out video promotions via e-mail. I looked into it and it seems the only other way to embed a video in an e-mail is through an animated GIF or this new technology.
My contact wanted to know what I thought so I spent a couple days of checking into it. First, there are already other competitive companies offering similar packages. One company I found offers a base package for free - free as in no money. The paid package at Talk Fusion starts at a front end payment of $400 and then $20/month - other packages go up to $2000/month. My view is that if a company wanted to use this concept, they likely already have a website and a web master who could create a video, load it to their server, and then send an e-mail with only one click required to open a video page - to demonstrate that, I've included a short video of me. If that is the case, why go through all the additional expense when this could easily be done in house? The Talk Fusion concept is being pushed as a business opportunity when I see it as a pyramid scheme - look at their website and you'll find out more about the money you can make than the product itself.
A good friend called yesterday about some things they were interested in buying off the internet which reminded me just how dangerous that can be. First, the product or service may not be at all like it is represented - fake products, copies, or out right lies abound on the internet. Then there is the issue of your credit card or banking security - is the product real but the site is only trying to get information which will allow them to empty your bank account or use your credit card? If it is a site that hosts items for sale by others - like eBay - how confident are Yo in the seller? On eBay there is some buyer protection but that is not true at all of other sites.
I once ordered a 'trial' of a product requiring me only to pay for shipping. I got the product - which did not work by the way - but without my permission or knowledge a 3 month's supply of the junk was charged to my credit card within a few days of the original order - clearly not enough time to actually "try" the product. Thankfully I used the best consumer protected credit card in the world...American Express. You see, AmEx goes to bat for the card holder, not the vendor. All other credit cards including Visa, MasterCard, etc. go to bat for the vendor, not the customer assuming the vendor, not the card holder, is correct. Any of you who've had to challenge a charge probably know what I mean! The whole point here is that the internet can be a very dangerous place to roam so be very careful. Then there are these phishing sites that's a whole other problem.
Once again I worked on Mike's site but got a bit tired so I thought it best to not mess around with it in the afternoon. I did get the template for a 'contact us' page done , now all I need to do is add some pictures. Each day I come up with different ideas as to what I can do to create a clean, useful website. My concern continues to be Mike's desire to have a lot of pages all linked by a navigational bar - I can of course create the links but it is my view they should not all be part of the navigation for the site. I might give it a rest today - or not - depending on what inspires me after coffee.
John is out in LA to meet his cousin and I think they will start driving back today. He really needs to jump through some hoops on Monday or else his chances of getting into FSU for the Fall term dwindle away I'm afraid. Starr called me yesterday with the latest deadlines some of which she thought she could handle but alas, John needs to go with his ID and register for this one exam he needs to take. Here's the real kicker - as of July 1st of this year the schools will no longer require this stupid exam. For God's sake, if a kid completes 2 years of college why in the hell should he have to take some stupid exam before he can finish college? I can tell you why - some dumbass government administrator wants to control everyone's lives. It just creates more unnecessary jobs in the government sector.
My yard is looking real good these days. I'm no longer an oasis in this neighborhood because all the rain has caused the weeds to turn green. But, my guy James is keeping everything well groomed. When Mary Ann & tom came by on Monday, they both commented on just how nice things are. I do take care of it or should I more correctly say I pay people to take care of it. I'm even getting some new bird of paradise blooms on one of my two plants.
Had some more landscape light burn-outs. With the Summer here I was hoping the bulbs will last longer because they are not on as long as they are in the Winter. Theses burn-outs were not my new GE replacement lights - those seem to be doing well. I had no idea it would cost so much to keep the lights replaced. But, I like the look so I'm going to continue with the lights.
OH...you'll find this interesting. My voodoo lily is coming back out again after it died last Fall. I didn't notice the lily last year until I returned from the Keys but I did this year. It really doesn't do anything except to cause folks to ask me just what the heck it is. I wonder if I'll get a flower this year? The flowers are suppose to smell really, really bad. If it does bloom, it won't be until after I return from the Keys.
Today looks like it will be beautiful based on the cloudless sky this morning. You know what that means - I may head over to the beach to work a bit more on my base for Islamorada next month. When Tom & Mary Ann were over on Monday, they too mentioned how much they're looking forward the trip net month. Do you remember today's picture from a past trip?
For the most part I spent yesterday tying to edit the home page of the site I'm building for Mike Block. You see, before I can build the other 10 pages he wants, I need to know what basic format he likes - specially , where does he want the navigation buttons and how many does he want. He thinks he wants 10 - I think ten is too many and makes navigation a bit cluttered. So what I've decided to do is place the code I wrote for both navigation bars in the page with the ability for me to turn one code off and the other one on. You can easily take out lines of code by simply blocking the browser's capability of reading the code. I use this all the time because while I'm building I'm not sure exactly what I want.
Today I plan on having a good look at another idea that came to me while I was watching 'The Closer' last night. The TNT network started their new season of The Closer like the USA network has done with Burn Notice. This moth and next will bring new seasons and in some cases new programming for me to watch. Like I mentioned last week, I could just get USA, TNT, A&E, and FOX News without all the other 356,098,675 channels I get and be happy. Of coursed I do watch other channels like The History Channel, The Learning Channel, The Discovery Channel, etc but the first four I mention are my base channels. I do not like nor will I watch the biased network channels and their stupid sit-coms.
I liked yesterday for another reason than the program project I was undertaking. Tommy came by with a pound cake that Kathryn baked for me and last even, Tom & Mary Ann brought me a half gallon of Publix's Summer Key Lime Pie ice cream. The way to my heart is through my stomach - I'm a real push-over for anything sweet, creaming, and bad for me. I tried both of course and both were very good. I guess I'll have to do more testing later today, huh?
I'm most pleased to report that Tom is looking good and seems to feel a whole hell of a lot better than he did just a few months back. I'm not just saying that, I noticed a very positive difference in Tom since before his trip to Baltimore. You know, someone needs to set the high bar for success in what he's gone through and I think Tom is the guy. There will be more things going on of course but he is strong and determined. This means he and Mary Ann will be hanging out in the Keys this Summer like the years in the past.
Speaking of the Keys, Donna finally sent me my lease for this Summer after having requesting it 3 or 4 months ago. I always knew I'd get it but it usually comes before the first part of June. Nonetheless, I signed it and Fax'd it back to Donna along with my check for the lease payment. So I'm now good to go and so are the others that are going. TB is so anxious to go scuba diving again he's thinking about going down later this month. For sure he & John can buddy-up before any of the other divers arrive. There even is a rumor that he & Ryan may go into the Caribbean later this month for a week of diving. I think TB has been bitten by the diving bug we all get after we first learn how to dive.
I've got more stuff to report but I've got to head out for coffee now.
I know you missed me yesterday but I've been very busy on a couple of new projects one of which I mentioned last week. Remember Kathryn asking me if I would make a web page (emphasis on "a" ) for her cellist friend, Mike Block (pictured) ? Well I took on the project, made a page, and they loved it. That's where it got interesting - Mike loved it so much he wants more pages and up to 9 navigation links. On the other hand, it was Kathryn's intent to give Mike "press" and a site in conjunction with a string camp he's doing for high school kids next Summer. It is certainly a noble cause and from all I can gather, Mike is very talented. So now I'm trying to balance what they both want and I'm sure I'll work it out. The site is not published yet but when it is, you'll be able to find it at mikeblock.net.
Mike already has a presence on the internet with his MySpace page where you can read about him and listen to his music. Kathryn has described him as a young struggling musician and that's why he can't afford to have his own site built yet. Well, he does live in New York City so with that expense, you can easily spend your income on rent. But more than that, it is my belief that Kathryn wants to help him out because of the nice things he's doing for the Vero kids hosting a Summer String Camp. Fair enough - I'll help. Besides, from what I hear, this guy is a rising Starr so actually there is a very good chance people will see the site I built for him and who knows, I might get other paid requests.
As you all know, I build sites because I'm a geek and I like it. With what I charge the people I don't know for doing the work I'd starve - except for Kathryn's Meals on Wheels program for me. I'm a geek...what can I say? If I actually get more and more requests, then I'll probably increase my fees to about 0% of what others charge instead of 10% of what others charge. All I seek now is the enjoyment I get from a job well done as judged by me and the person for whom I built a site.
Now comes the unexpected result of this project - Kathryn liked it enough to ask that I build her a new site because she says she doesn't like the one she has SingerJohnston.com . It is rather simple, unimaginative and Kathryn confirmed, it's an out-of-the-box- template. The guy who did it has told Kathryn she could not add things including pictures - Wrong! Either the guy is too lazy doesn't really understand the code, or both. It's not hard to fill in the blanks - the real challenge is to modify the code so as to customize it to another's taste. Anyway, I'm not going to see if I can create a better internet imagine for Kathryn's law firm and then with her approval publish it. My concern as always is whether or not the person for whom I'm building a website will like what I've done. The important thing is to do something the owner of the site likes whether I like it or not. Like onesuperjuice.com...I don't much care for all that orange but that's what Ray wanted to be consistent with the Vemma image.
On an entirely different subject, I got a visit from John yesterday after his trip to FSU. It was a most productive trip that had he not taken it, he might not be enrolled at FSU this Fall. Having taken it does not guarantee his enrollment now but does give him a roadmap for him to follow which will improve his admission for the Fall term. John knows what to do, he wants to be enrolled, so I'm confident he will follow through. His efforts will be delayed because he will fly to L.A. today so he can help his cousin, Betts, drive her car across the country back to Vero. This is one hell of a long drive so my guess is John will not be back before this coming weekend.
The Summer TV season has begin with the first new Burn Notice on Thursday night. Of course I watched it and even got a call from Brother Drew to remind me it was on. Well, I'd been watching an all day marathon of Burn Notice episodes so I was primed for the new season. frankly Thursday's episode was not as good as some but then again, like chocolate, I like them all.
There was a new series called "Royal Pains" but I couldn't stay awake to watch it. fear not...both Burn Notice and Royal Pains will be replayed this morning so I can watch them a bit later. I think the USA network has some of the best drama/comedy on TV today - much better than any of the 'old media' like ABC, NBC, and CBS. Besides, I don't like to watch any of the broadcast networks now that they are controlled by Obama and his liberal goons. You think I'm wrong? Just watch a few newscasts and you'll see what I mean. Even there programs have a liberal view to them. One of last week's Saturday Night Live skits was taken down from the website because it put the White House in a bad view.
We are in a place in time when much of the media outlets are either controlled by the liberal Obamaites or they are afraid of the wrath of the White House. You think I'm kidding? I bet the former president of GM doesn't think so. I bet the banks and any other companies that took money doled out by the White House don't think so - in fact, many want to give the money back but the White House won't let them.
The next big loss of freedom is just around the corner. As soon as a State takes 'bail-out' money, that State will then be controlled by the White House...mark my words on that. Just wait until California takes money then watch what rules and regulation the White House imposes including spending more money on unions. Obama is an elegant teleprompter reader but don't pay attention to what he says - pay attention to what he does. You'll find the two don't match very often. This country is on the brink of go so far recovery is not an option - heck we may be there already!
Do any of you like the health care plans your employer offers? For get it - Obama is about to take all of that away and make you go under the government's plan. Forget about choices and options. For get about independence. Get ready for government mandated health and huge additional taxes to pay for it. At the very least, all the premiums paid by your employer to the government plan will be taxed - they are not taxed now. But that will not be enough money so count on higher taxes in the form of a European-style VAT taxes and/or the "cap and trade" tax. These taxes will hit everyone because taxing the productive people more won't be enough. The "tax cut for 95% of working Americans" as Obama promised is out the window - that promise was then and is now a lie.
Be afraid boys and girls. Be very afraid!
Enough of that depressing stuff...on a lighter note, did you notice Micro$oft's new search engine - Bing.com - went online yesterday? I like it because it ranks TanzaniteAmerica very high on many searched terms or phrases. I wish there were a way - and there probably is - to identify the words or phrases most searched with respect to Tanzanite. What I do have access to is the words used that bring visitors to my site but not other sites. I'm wondering what words or phrases are most used for all tanzanite sites. How can I find that out without paying Google? Much to my surprise, the phrase that brought the most visitors to my site is "tanzanite meaning". Huh? That means phrases like tanzanite investment, tanzanite gemstones, tanzanite dealer, etc are going to other sites. This whole search engine thing continues to challenge me.
As you good visitors may know, I'm one of two elected officers in my coffee klatch - I'm the secretary and another member is the treasurer. One thing I did was to update our member's list by added new members, dropping those no longer with us, and verifying telephone numbers. In the process of updated I made a column for those who might want to volunteer their e-mail address the operative word here is "volunteer". I made an announcement the member's list was updated and if you wanted a list, just see me and I'll give you one. Jeez!! Two of the members objected to my work on the list because I offered a space for e-mail addresses if you wanted yours included - that's the only difference from the old list.
These two members declared that we had not voted on whether or not to include e-mail addresses at one of our business meetings. True, we had not voted on that but give me a f*cking break!! Who among you thinks that we need to vote on adding e-mail addresses if members want to volunteer them such that they can communicate with one another? This is pure bullsh*t in my opinion. Our coffee klatch is based on acceptance and tolerance - we are not run like Hitler's SS. Perhaps these two members think we should vote on everything? Does that include how many cups of coffee we drink, how much sugar we use, how many times you can leave the room to use the water closet, etc?!? Well, I got with the only other elected officer and decided we are going to make the list available over the objection of these two - if they don't like it, then come to a business meeting in front of all of us and explain what great harm will come by including volunteered e-mail addresses - that seems a whole hell of a lot less intrusive than listing everyone's phone numbers! Jeez!
yesterday I got my monthly news letter from 'Windows Secrets' which told me about Microsoft's stealth add-on to those of us who use Fire fox as our default browser. Apparently it's been widely blogged that Microsoft can silently add an extension to Firefox when users install .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1 and certain other updates. The extension that MS adds to Firefox implements a technology called ClickOnce. It allows .NET apps to be downloaded and executed within browsers other than Internet Explorer. Unfortunately, this technology can also allow hacked Web sites to infect PCs. It was suggested that using the Add-ons dialog box to disable the extension prevents it from running and protects Firefox from potential security flaws - that's what I did when I found the add on had been installed without my knowledge or permission. Microsoft is sneaky in this way.
Kathryn asked if I might help a cellist she knows - Mike Beck (pictured) - by creating a website for the guy and I said I would. He is apparently fairly well known even though he's young and has helped the Vero Beach High School group. As you might guess I can name all the cellist I know on my figures even if I only had one finger - the only person I know that plays the cello is Kathryn's daughter, Bridget. Actually Bridget has gotten rather proficient on the cello and continues to learn every year. Unfortunately the only thing I can play is my stereo.
I'm a bit reluctant only because my experience with "artists" has not been good. You see creative people have their own version which more often than not conflicts with what I think should go into a website. Having said that, I'm willing to give it a go because no matter what happens, I'll learn something along the way even if it's don't ever try to help an artist again.
Yesterday I got an e-mail from my attorney-client in White Plains, NY about search engine results on his site, MessinaandAssociates.net. This is the site I edited about a month ago to improve search engine results in the best way I know how. Before my editing, you couldn't find his site on any of the first 10 - 12 pages Google returned. Now he is in the top 5 Google pages depending on what words you search and is on the first page of some words. I'm here to tell you I'm most pleased with these results - there has been a dramatic improvement over the previous months. In fact, traffic to his site has doubled in the last month.
I'm learning more and more about how search engines work by trial and error. If I knew how to get a site on page one every time I'd get seriously rich but of course the search engine algorithms are top secret. But what I have learned is how to move up the search ladder with my own site as well as those I build for others. I think this stuff is a lot of fun...I know, I know, I'm a geek! But let me tell you boys and girls it is nice having something you like doing that doesn't cost anything and you can't catch a STD!
On the accounts I handle I've employed a whole variety of statistics keeping in an effort to but understand just what is going on. This data is particularly important to those who want to produce e-commerce but not as important to this site, BillsView.com . None the less, I do track statistics for this site so I decided to check it just for fun. Remember, this site is actually new in late February in that I now have BillsView.com hosted now when it used to be BillsPost.com that was hosted with BillsView.com being forwarded toBillsPost.com. Did you follow me on that? Now BillsPost.com is forwarded to BillsView.com. Anyway, I was shocked at the traffic I've been getting as illustrated in today's image. Jeez! I'm not making this stuff up but I do want to suggest that most of these 'hits' are by folks wanting to put their drugs or adult site links in my 'Comments' section. Now that I've added CAPTCHA my theory is that traffic will drop dramatically this month but I'm not sure. The bots may not know the auto-postings are not working - it will be interesting to look at the end of June.
It was another drop-dead beautiful day here in Vero but I did not go to the beach. I think it is prudent to take a day off until I get where I can stay out longer. Worry not, I'll be ready before the trip to Islamorada. That is assuming Donna gets in gear and sends me a lease - you know how I can obsess over it until it is done! I'm still not concerned but at the same time I wish it was completed.
Yesterday I learned how to write code such as to create a drop-down text under a word. I'm thinking about taking all 25 of the words on Messina's "Services" page and create a some text for each that will be revealed once you click on the word. Then you can collapse the information once you're through reading it. I'm trying to create a cool way to add a lot of text rich in keywords to Messina's site - this would do it I believe. I'm not going to do all the work until and unless I get the go-ahead because for this I would expect additional compensation.
Yesterday was a good day for a hour of beach duty in preparation for pool duty next month (see image). The beaches were close to empty although I think that will change soon. The water was as nice as I've seen it this year - I came real close to going in but I decided to save that for another day. There were some teenagers on the beach whom I suspect are out of school for this school year.
It was time for me to update my Will so I started by completing an online questionnaire that should make it easy for an attorney to use for my Last Will and Testament. Now that I live in a State different than the one where my current Will was prepared it occurred to me I needed a new one. I think I also need to create a new living will so that someone will have to care for me when I become even more whacked than I am already.
My choices now are to submit the form for preparation online or take the form to a local attorney. I'm not so sure about this online stuff so I'll probably have it drafted locally but first I need to identify who I want to do that. I have a friend who can produce a Will and is the same attorney I used to settle my Dad's estate. Dad's settlement was simple...transfer the house to me - I already had joint ownership of his checking account. I gave all the 'stuff' in Dad's house to the local humane society so they could sell it in their thrift shop to help fund their operations.
As I've done in the past, I lumped everything I own into a
big small pile to be liquidated and then distributed by percentages to those I included - I'm sure some of you are reading this now. I wasn't sure who I should leave my debits to so I split my debits among the Barnes-Brennan boys - I'm hoping they will be most pleased to pay off my outstand debits upon my demise. Mike Gately was and continues to be my executor.
Rather than outlining in detail who is to get what as it relates to certain things I own - like Rayburn prints - I decided to issue a letter to my executor as to my wishes on a few personal items. If I do it via a letter, I can always change the letter as needed. I understand such a letter is not binding but I do trust my executors to comply with my wishes - if they don't, I'll come back to haunt them!
I discovered something interesting yesterday - when it is time to refill my Adderall, I must physically bring a new written prescription to the pharmacy. You can't call a prescription in or send one via FAX. I find that a bit strange because you can get a prescription called in for strong opiates which I would think are more dangerous and abused than Adderall. No worries, I'll not have a problem getting what I need from Dr. Director.
The Wellbutrin I take can affect sleeping making for a restless night. I've been using a procedure before I go to bed that is working for me. Just before I decide to go to sleep I soak in a hot tub for about 10 minutes with my whirlpool on. It relaxes me permitting me to fall asleep and for the most part stay asleep except for those couple times during the night that Sally Cat decides I should be awakened to pet her - typical demanding female, huh? Oops...I know that comment will get me in trouble.
The last two days have been very nice without rain or clouds. I went to the beach on Sunday but decided to take yesterday off but if it continues to be nice, I might return today. I suspect the beaches will have more visitors starting Wednesday after all the local schools close for the Summer. I remember my teenage years were spent at the beach during most of the Summer months.
Once again I've contacted Donna via FAX concerning my lease for apartment 412 at The Palms this Summer. Still no action on her part which doesn't surprise me except to say the lease payment will be due in two weeks. I'm thinking I'll just send a check on time with the expectation Donna will sooner or later get around to me. With the economy in the tank I'm wondering just how busy she can be?
Some of you have asked about my plans for an internet connection at The Palms. My plans are to get Comcast service for a month even though I will not be there that long. I'll bring my router with high gain antennas so others can log on like we've done in the past. This year I'm going to try to avoid the Comcast debacle had last year but I'm not as hopeful as I'd like to be. More details to follow.
My coffee group is shrinking in size now that most of the snowbirds have returned to the Northeast. The next few months will be lean in attendance and in contributions. Our group has enough money in the bank to cover our rent payments for the Summer and of course buy the coffee. I've also noticed that Publix and other stores aren't as crowded as they have been during the Winter. I like the slower pace during the Summer more than the crowds in the Winter.
My air conditioning bills are going up because it is really warm around here now. But my bills are still kept somewhat reasonable because of all the insulation in my attic and my white roof. When Starr was here the other day she reported her bills really go up during the Summer much more than mine. I paid a lot of money for the new roof and insulation but I believe it will be a good investment in the long run. I don't see the cost of electricity ever coming down, do you?
I've done some additional work on GWD - you can click on the link above to see the site. I added some more samples of my work with a 'drop-down' function I think is pretty cool. I can add as many pages as I like but the 4 I have is enough for now. I might add TanzaniteAmerica.com because that's my best site from a design standpoint and search engine optimization. Slowly but surely I've been successful in moving the site higher on the results from Google, Yahoo, and MSN - those 3 search engines make up over 95% of all searches. There are a whole slew of search sites but the big three get my attention.
General Motor's bankruptcy yesterday caused me to fondly remember the muscle cars of the 1960's - the decade I first could drive and own a car. My favorite then was the corvette and I still love the design of the 1965 corvette. In fact, when Richard was over in the rice paddies of Southeast Asia, I agreed to take care of his 1965 stingray - mighty nice of me, huh? It was a white convertible that looked like the one in today's picture. To bad we now have Government Motors producing Obamamobiles!
OMG - UGH!....I walked out to take some trash to the trash container and I thought I was going to die with the HORRIBLE odder coming from behind my storeroom. Holy Crap! I thought I got a whiff of something when I got in my car yesterday but it was really strong to the West of my carport! Something was definitely dead. I follow my nose (literally) to discover a dead raccoon under some ferns with flies all over it and maggots. When Starr was over on Friday she mentioned she smelled something as did Ace when he was here on Friday too. I got a thick garbage bag, but on some surgical-like disposable gloves, picked the rather large coon up then deposited in the bag. It smelled so bad I thought I might get sick! Not wanting to put it in my garbage container for fear it would smell weeks after the animal was taken away, I but it on top of a rather full trash container farther down the ally behind my house. Ugh!
Now here's a bad thing for me - the smell tended to linger in my nose well after I got rid of the creature. That happens to me rather frequently - I can smell something then continue to smell it even once I'm away from the source. Does that happen to you as well? I have no idea what caused the demise of the coon but I'm glad I got rid of it. Watering the area down where the animal was located helped to get rid of some of the smell that still remained.
Having a craving for fried chicken after watching a program about fried foods on the Travel Channel, I went to fetch a dinner at the Maryland fried chicken store - this store has been in Vero for years and years. On the way over a rather large, over weight man was in the road (Royal Palm Blvd) riding is 'scooter chair'. How smart is that ? And have you noticed it's always the over weight people who ride around when they are the very ones that need to be walking? Same thing is true in Publix or Wally World - the people riding need to be walking some of their excess pounds off.
You've probably noticed I've not mentioned any landscape light burn-outs in weeks, right? Well over night Saturday night there were 3 burn-outs on the same circuit, but not the problematic circuit. I just don't believe 3 lights will burn out on the same circuit at the same time unless there's an issue with that circuit, do you? Perhaps a power serge or some similar event. One of the lights that burned out has never ever been replaced so I guess it was just time.
Have you noticed I added a 'search' function back to BillsView.com? I found the code which will use Google's search engine to look through my site. The problem is that Google has to have the pages 'cached' before the engine can find anything so recent posts may not be found as easily as old ones. Also any of the posts I've moved from my 'archives' to storage will not open because the path to the post has been changed....did you follow me on that one? In other words, only the post archives listed on my main page can be found - those starting on January 1, 2009. Older posts are 'cached' in Google but the path-to-the-posts has been changed. I'm not sure how long I'm going to test this function or if I'll keep it at all. What do you think?
Word has it that John is going to FSU this week to check things out - I'm most pleased he's going to do that. I believe it is important for him to sit across a desk from someone who can confirm or deny he'll be admitted for the Fall session. If not, he'll have to take that one course at a local junior college then transfer to FSU for the Winter session. I sure hope he can get into FSU this Fall with joint enrollment in the other college for that one course he needs.