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Bitcoin Dives

Tue 19 August 2014

Most of you probably do not look at the trends in big coin on a daily basis like I do. In the last week it has dropped rather precipitously from the $580 range to below $430 at one point. That of course got my attention because usually Bitcoin only decrease in value when there is bad news and there has been none.

In fact, more and more businesses are taking Bitcoin as a form of payment. Most of these businesses change their Bitcoin into dollars as soon as they receive them which means there are more and more Bitcoin's being sold on the market. The good news is more businesses accept Bitcoin as payment but the backside of that is they are exchanging almost immediately into currency causing a larger than usual selling of Bitcoin. The analogy would be if stockholders of a particular company wanted to sell their stock all the same time the value of that stock would go down rather rapidly. Here's what Coindesk.com has to say:

"The development is the latest blow to the price of bitcoin, which had slumped to its lowest level since May late last week. The decline has since been largely attributed to a worsening short term news outlook, as well as the industry's margin traders, though alternative theories have been proposed."

This morning Bitcoin is back up in the $485 range and appears to be slowly increasing at this point rather than decreasing. I've taken a long-term position so fluctuations of this nature are to be expected but I'm still betting on the value of Bitcoin going up. It's such a new technology and people are just not getting used to it that it's uncertain to me as exactly what might happen.

Yesterday when my yard person was year mowing the lawn and trimming the hedges as he does every week he found an area where yellow jackets and made a nest in the ground. He was stung about a half a dozen times because once they start sting it's hard to get away from them. Yellow jackets will chase you. This morning I had the people who put out herbicides, pesticides and fertilizer in my lawn and on my plants come by to look at the area. They will be here as many times as it takes before the sun comes up and the yellow jackets start being active. They will put a powder around their nesting area which should kill them. It will likely take a few applications to get rid of all of them.

This past weekend I helped Kathryn set up her new network which at this point is working well. She needed to extend the range of her router in order to get better reception in the office where her main desktop computer is now located. I put some high gain antennas (3) on the router and one high gain receiving antenna on the computer. She is happy with the results and everything seems to be working fine.

I haven't contacted Comcast yet about my service package but I still plan to do so soon. My rates are good until the middle of September according to my online account. There is an offer going on now which may not be available in a month so I want to take advantage of what's available while it's available. I need to have Comcast for my Internet and television but as everything else the rates continue to go up. The only thing I can do is negotiate my package and threatened to take my business to another service provider which of course I won't do.

The Little League World Series continues this week and I've been watching several but not all of the games. There will likely be three or four games on later today. By the time the Little League World Series is over college football will start which is a good thing. College football is my favorite of all sports and now that I have my Apple TV I'll be able to watch even more games than I could before.

Posted at 10:45 am in General | Comments (0)

Dr. Director Visit

Fri 15 August 2014

This morning I went to see Dr. director for my regular quarterly appointment. I go every three months because one of the prescriptions I receive can only be issued for a three-month period and is not eligible for refills. You actually have to take a new written prescription from the doctor to the pharmacist yourself; fax machines and call ends are not allowed. He confirmed once again that I'm hopelessly wacky with no possibility of recovery but only treatment for the symptoms.

In case you haven't been watching recently the value of Bitcoin dropped below $500 this morning. Just about four days ago it was at $575 but now is going down. It had been trading in a range as one would expect but without any particularly bad news it's lost over 12% of its value. Of course I researched on the Internet to find out what might be causing this rather precipitous drop and it seems fingers are being pointed at traders buying highly leveraged puts and calls as one would see in the stock market. I've taken this opportunity to buy one more coin and if it stays depressed I may do it again. I'm in for the long haul and this temporary volatility is to be expected. There hasn't been any particularly bad news but just the opposite; we have had good news.

I've been watching the Little League World Series on television and some of the games have been darn good. As one would expect some games are not even close and they lose my interest. The playoffs will go on for another 10 days at which time the world champions will be crowned and college football season will begin. I'm very much looking forward to seeing some good college games particularly now that I can get new networks on my TV which were not available to me last year.

Speaking of TV, it is about time for my Comcast plan to expire. I actually think it expires next month. They of course will want to increase my monthly fees but like I did before, today I researched the Internet to find alternatives which when presented to Comcast might temper my rate increase. After all they have to get money somewhere to buy Cox cable.

I've found a perfect plan that is much like my current plan called a triple play meaning it includes telephone service. I don't want telephone service but if the cost is the best I can get with the service then so be it. What they don't tell you is the triple play package includes the necessity of installing a Comcast modem with a rental fee of $12 a month. My modem will work perfectly well as long as I don't use the phone service included in the plans I've been researching. I think I'll call someone later in the evening in the next two days to see if I can get someone to switch me over and sign me up for the plan I want which by the way includes a two year rate guarantee.

I've done a bit of exploring with my Apple TV device and thus far I continue to be happy with my purchase. A friend of mine gave me a username and password which allows me access to Netflix and the Apple TV device itself has several free channels. And of course it provides all the ESPN channels which is the reason I got it in the first place. I'm sure there's more to learn in many other opportunities to screw things up.

This morning after my doctors visit I went to help Kathryn set up her new wireless network when she moved computers and other devices around the house. We got it all set up and working okay at least for now. By the way, Kathryn did most of the work with just a little aid from me. She still doesn't know how to log into a router to change the settings. She has the same Linksys 1900 AC router as I recently purchased.

Today it's been raining since early this morning through all the day and it's raining at the moment. It's just been a real nasty overcast dark Friday but with my Internet service, TV and some of Alice's great cakes it doesn't seem all that bad. I'm getting low on cakes so I'll have to nudge Alice back to baking.

Posted at 04:59 pm in General | Comments (0)


Thu 14 August 2014

This morning around 2:00 AM I heard a noise that sounded like a chirp. I didn't think anything of it until I heard it again in about 60 seconds later. At first I thought it was Sally the attack cat on patrol knocking something over but it kept on chirping every 60 seconds or so. I got up and in just a few short minutes identified the chirping sound coming from my smoke detector in the kitchen because the batteries were getting low. I ordered replacement batteries this morning from eBay.

Yesterday I installed my new Apple TV which was a bit more challenging than expected. The remote control that comes with the device only has six functions on it therefore it is not clear which functions to used to manipulate the controls. The first thing I needed to do was to connect the device to my wireless network which took several tries because I either misspelled my password or didn't know how to enter the password. This resulted in my having to break down and actually read the instructions as well as go online to search for certain functions. After was connected I have what appears to be a strong signal from my router to the device.

The main purpose I acquired this Apple TV device was to watch ESPN 3 which is only available on the Internet and is not provided by any TV service. Because the Apple TV device connects directly to my wireless Internet I'm able to watch ESPN 3 as well as all ESPN networks. In addition to ESPN the Apple device has about two dozen other "channels" I can watch most of which are available through subscription like Netflix and Hulu to name only two. The picture quality is great! Later today I intend on seeing if the password I have for Netflix works. If things go as I expect, I'll be able to watch lots of college football games that are not broadcast on network television but are of interest to me like some of the Georgia Tech games. I've not tried using it after I set up the network connection but I can say it has lots of available settings which will give me the opportunity to really screw things up.

The day before yesterday I received new high gain antennas for my new Linksys AC router. I put meter apps on both my smart phone and tablet to check the signals around the house before I change the antennas and then again once the antennas were changed to the new high gain ones. They were supposed to increase the signal strength by 16 dB but from my testing they didn't come close to that increase although I did see a small gain. Fortunately the Apple device gets a strong signal directly from my router on the orginal antennas.

On Tuesday I went to my dermatologist to have the stitches removed from my recent surgery. For the first time since I've been seeing a dermatologist he told me the cells which were biopsied showed A-typical growth which is a sign of future melanoma. I've had other cancer cells removed in the past but none of them were of the nature which would turn to melanoma. Fortunately the biopsy showed all of the growth was removed and therefore I have no further worries about this particular spot. I dermatologist asked me if I wanted to go further than he did on the first cut and at this point I'm more than happy that my choice was to go ahead. Henceforth and forever more I will always opt on having anything that has potential malignant growth removed as by the way I have been doing.

Unfortunately Starr is still very sick trying to recover from whatever she has had for over 10 days. I think she has some sort of flu because colds usually don't last this long nor are they a severe as her symptoms. Since I started getting flu shots 25 years ago up not had the flu but prior to then I had caught the flu and never wanted it again. I bet Starr will get a flu shot this fall for the first time.

Posted at 10:42 am in General | Comments (0)

College Football

Mon 11 August 2014

I've been waiting for nine months but it's that time of the year again. The first college football game is on Saturday, August 23 but most of the main season starts the following week. I love watching college football and there will be four months of it ahead and then some bowl games afterwards. This year there will be a new post season bowl game called the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl! The Atlanta-based company BitPay has a three-year contract with ESPN "to create an amazing bitcoin event for sports fans, families and television audiences." This should make thousands of people aware of something they've never heard of before and that is Bitcoin.

To me it really doesn't matter who's playing as long it is a good game. In my mind a good game is one that is high-scoring and the lead switches back and forth several times during the game. It doesn't matter what conference, what teams or the importance of the game. High-scoring close games or just fun for me and I'm very much looking forward to the season start. In the meantime I have Little League World Series playoff games to watch for the next week or two.

There are several games each week not broadcast on any of the television networks but can be seen on ESPN3 or Watch ESPN. These are both Internet channels which are available if you're Internet service provider has paid ESPN to make them available. In my case Comcast has opened my ability to watch these games on my computer.

Really I would like to watch ESPN3 on my main TV. I can do that by running a HDMI cable from my computer to my TV making my TV a computer monitor. It would be better if I could connect my big-screen TV to my computer wirelessly and I think I may have found a way of doing just that. I've ordered a device called Apple TV which connects to a regular TV via a HDMI cord and receive signals over the Internet wirelessly through my home Internet network. There is an app I can buy which should project whatever is on my monitor to my TV screen via Apple TV. This is something relatively new and has just become available. However, I also think that the Apple TV device itself will allow me to connect to ESPN3 without going through my computer and using just my wireless network. You need to have a subscription which I do so naturally I ordered an Apple TV device to check it out. One way or the other I believe I'll be able to watch Internet sports broadcasts on my big-screen TV this season for the first time. Stay tuned

Tomorrow I go to my dermatologist to have the stitches removed from last week's surgery. This is a nonevent it should only take a few moments. The surgery has healed well but probably will leave a small scar on my otherwise flawless face. Those are the penalties one has to pay for sitting in the sun for years not knowing the damage which really can be done to one's skin. I'll pay for the rest of my life because there always be spots on my skin that need to be removed to avoid cancer. Heck, when I was a teenager the only thing we put on was a mixture of baby oil and iodine! That was great wasn't it?

Starr is very much under the weather so we've postpone her birthday celebration which previously was scheduled for Wednesday at the Tides restaurant in Vero. I still plan on taking her out to dinner there but it will probably be a few weeks off before she is recovered from what is really a nasty sickness. This is more than the cold; I think she may have some sort of flu. She feels terrible and sounds terrible on the phone. Unfortunately one just has to wait for the illness to run its course.

Posted at 02:23 pm in General | Comments (0)

Bank of America

Thu 31 July 2014

I have discovered something new on my windows operating system which am trying out today for the first time. It has a voice recognition program that many say he is as good as Dragon Naturally Speaking. Usually when I put together a post I use my Dragon Naturally Speaking software because I'm such a poor typist. So we'll see how it does.

Remember my post of two weeks ago about the potential fraudulent e-mail I received from Bank of America? I sent it to their fraud department and in fact it was not something they sent out but rather in phishing e-mail. I'm pretty good at spotting fraud but this one looked amazing!

Recently I discovered that the call blocking software I use has a newer version which permits twice as many numbers entries and has other features. The new model arrived in the mail yesterday and sometime in the very near future I'll install it. Unfortunately I'm going to have to manually enter many of the numbers that are on my current device. This device is great because once I receive a call like don't want I'm able to block that number from ever getting through again.

For some time now Bank of America has been promoting their app for portable devices like smartphones and tablets. Although this device has been available for over 18 months I had never tried it but decided to do so this past weekend. With the application I'll be able to make deposits to my bank account from my home which gives me yet another reason not to leave the house!

I installed the app on both my Samsung smart phone and my Samsung galaxy three tablet but could not get it to work on either devise. You guys know I'm computer savvy so I wasn't going to let it stop me. Time and time again I failed after uninstall land then reinstalling the program. On my smartphone it would simply make it crash and on my tablet it would do nothing except show a screened it did not open. I contacted technical support at Bank of America and explain my problem via my secure e-mail account. You'll never guess!

Yesterday I received a call from a vice president of Bank of America (they have thousands I'm sure) explaining that the reason I was having a problem is the cause their application does not work on any Samsung Devices!!! How f*cking stupid can that be? Recently the Wall Street Journal reported that 65% of all portable/mobile devices in the United States are made by Samsung. Just how incompetent do you have to be to market a product that likely is unavailable for more than 50% of your client base?! I was totally shocked! The man on the phone was nice and I asked him who was in charge of making that decision because I'd like to write aa letter to him. He did not reveal the person's name. The only thing he keeps saying is keep on checking the Google play website for a new update.

Can you imagine any major corporation in the United States heavily marketing a product it did not work for 65% of the people who bought it? Jeez!

I got a telephone call fromTommy this morning who advised me that his son Matt and John had a successful day yesterday in grabbing lobsters doing mini season. There's more news to report but I'm not sure I have permission to release it just yet so consider that it a teaseso you'll have to come back to Bill'sView.

I'm going to stop now and teach the Microsoft force recognition program to better understand me. I've had to correct if he thinks it has typed while I was dictating. I will say I think it has great potential.

Posted at 10:52 am in General | Comments (0)

This Past Weekend

Mon 28 July 2014

This past weekend was certainly a full one for me. I had several projects going on at the same time which I will briefly mention today. I have been told that sometimes my postings are rather verbose so with that in mind I'll try not to babble on and on.

For a couple of weeks now I've been trying to get the Bank of America app to work on either my Samsung smartphone or Samsung tablet both of which have operating systems complying with minimum requirements. On my Samsung tablet the application just won't open at all. On my phone I've got it to open a couple of times but now when I try it simply freezes the phone and then the phone reboots itself. These are not satisfactory results. I want to be able to take a picture of a check here at my house and have it deposited into my bank account.

I purchased a rather inexpensive brand X android tablet from China that has the android operating system and the Bank of America app will work on this device. The device itself is rather poor in that it loses its charge rather quickly and can lose its charge altogether overnight even if it's not in use. When it does work it's rather cool and I'd like to use it but it's not reliable like my Samsung tablet.

I've once again figured out how to text using my Google voice number. I swore off texting several months ago but I might occasionally send one now that I have that functional on my tablets and phone. So don't be surprised if I might try sending a text from time to time although I still believe that e-mail is more reliable and useful to me.

There is a online newsletter for which I pay and receive about every two weeks. The latest issue talked extensively about the new standard for routers known as 801.11ac or 802.11ac both of which are not officially sanctioned but are being used by certain manufacturers on new models today. The articles got me so fired it up that I decided to order a new router although the Linksys "n" router I had/have worked perfectly fine. I bought a new Linksys model EN6900 - AC1300 which claim to have faster data transfer both wired and wirelessly as well as several other features including a"visitors network", two USB ports, online manipulation with a smart phone or tablet in many other features I will not go into detail now.

I must say I was rather shocked at how much faster this router was compared to my good Linksys n router. I can say the improvement was at least 20% to 30% above the old router. Frankly I thought I was just getting a new router to play with and didn't expect such good results. I will say my old router was four years old or more and in the computer/electronics world that's ancient. This new router is way cool!

A week ago today I had a visit with my dermatologist who decided to take a small sample from a spot on my neck that has been there for several years. He said he thought he'd notice something different and wanted to biopsy it just to make sure there's no problem. The biopsy came in today and in fact I need to have the mole/cancer removed. He told me what the biopsy results in a sentence that had eight words none of which I've ever heard before. I asked what it meant English and basically it meant I had a mold that in the middle of it there was abnormal growth which was not malignant now but it would be prudent to remove the mold before it became dangerous to me. I go back in a week from tomorrow to have the surgery done. While under the knife I'm going to ask him to do a little bit more work to give me that Brad Pitt look. I wonder how that's going to work?

Some of the old "Keys" crowd have gone to Islamorada for lobster mini season this week. Tommy of course had to go to oversee everything but I really know he just enjoys time with his kids. John and his girlfriend went as well. The season starts on Wednesday and lasts for only two days. Stay tuned for their results.

Of course I've got a lot more I can say but keeping my promise I'm going to stop now. Maybe if I posted more frequently I wouldn't be caught having to one us a lot in one posting. I'll try to do better.

Posted at 03:44 pm in General | Comments (0)

Bank Fraud?

Fri 25 July 2014

How many times have you been told or read that you should never click on a link in a e-mail that connection to a financial institution or other secure site? This morning I received what appeared to be an e-mail from bank of America requesting my participation in a survey they allegedly were conducting. Of course I did not click on the link but instead went to my Bank of America account, login and then sent an e-mail telling them why I would not dissipate and suggesting an alternative. If you want someone to participate in the survey and send him an e-mail asking that they log into their personal account and complete the survey once logged in.

I said to them," shame on you for violating your own rules". It is the bank and other financial institutions that tell you never to click on a link in an e-mail which appears to come from a valid financial source. I don't mind completing the questionnaire I just want to make sure that it is the bank who is requesting the questionnaire completion in the first place. It will be interesting to see what response I get since I have a platinum account.

The latest Bitcoin news is that the exchange rate has dropped to the $600 level after being in the $630 level for a few weeks. I saw this as a buying opportunity and purchase another Bitcoin yesterday. It has not moved much and is trading at $603 at the moment. As I've always said we can expect fluctuations which to me is a buying opportunity once the exchange drops 30 or $40 in a day. My long-term belief is that Bitcoin will continue to edge up in value but will continue to be volatile along the way.

The latest Bitcoin news is that the exchange rate has dropped to the $600 level after being in the $630 level for a few weeks. I saw this as a buying opportunity and purchase another Bitcoin yesterday. It has not moved much and is trading at $603 at the moment. As I've always said we can expect fluctuations which to me is a buying opportunity once the exchange drops 30 or $40 in a day. My long-term belief is that Bitcoin will continue to edge up in value but will continue to be volatile along the way. Article

On Monday I went to my dermatologist for my semi annual checkup. He couldn't find anything specifically needing attention but there was a place on my neck we've been watching your my regular visits he finally decided to biopsy. Monday I'll go back to see if there's anything out of the ordinary with this particular spot although it's been there for a few years and he has never thought it to be dangerous in the past. Of course I certainly hope he is correct.

Earlier I mentioned my problem receiving signals in my bedroom suite from the router located in my office. My Linksys router doesn't have any external antennas but as a router functions rather well. About six months ago Kathryn said she needed a new router and asked me what I would recommend. After a good bit of research I suggested she buy the Linksys EA6900 which he did and has been thrilled with using it ever since. It's a rather expensive router but since I hadn't spent any money on a router in years I thought it was time to contribute to the economy. I ordered one of these routers for myself; it should be here by Monday. Allegedly the wireless speed is much faster than that of my current router plus it has some new bells and whistles with which I can play.

Have a good weekend Ya'll..

Posted at 11:33 am in General | Comments (0)

Black Fire 1

Fri 18 July 2014

I was listening to Fox business news just two days ago when they announced that the painting called "Black Fire 1" was auctioned at Christie's for over $84,000,000. To the left you can see an image of this painting and see that it is rather substantial in size relative to the people standing next to it. Frankly I personally don't dislike the painting but for the life of me I can't imagine mall anyone would want to pay so much money for something which on the surface appears to take very little talent. It's not even that old because it was painted in 1953. In fact I think the painter might still be alive! Jeez, I just don't get it.

A couple of days ago Nicholas came by to ask my assistant on a project. What he wanted to know more about was product presentation and pricing. Nicholas is in exceptionally astute young man with great energy and lots of ideas. In that regard he reminds me a lot of Matt Barnes. We spent about three hours together and I believe he was very pleased with the results and I was more than happy to add my opinions which are correct of course. In my working career my clients were mostly closely held companies and therefore I got a look from the inside as to how they worked and were managed. I was also president of our own little firm and had to deal with many of these matters myself.

I do know about you but I hate to see banner ads on sites that I visit. The worst offenders are those ads that flash or move in some way. Also offensive or those adult ads you'll find on some sites like Pirate Bay. Fortunately my Kaspersky Internet Security Suite has a feature that will block almost all banner ads. For the most part I can find the URL for the ads that are not blocked and then enter that URL in my hosts file. In case you don't know this the hosts file is found deep in the bowels of the Windows operating system and is a place where you can enter any URL and then that URL will permanently be blocked from entering your computer. I must have dozens and dozens of URLs in my hosts file.

Yesterday I picked up a computer that did not work and was told I could keep it. I don't have any use for it except to wait until someone needs a computer and then I would give it away if I were able to repair it. It took me all of about 15 min. to fix the problem and now this Dell OptiPlex 755 is fully functional and a rather decent desktop even though it is several years old. I plan on calling the person who gave it to me and let them know it works so if they wish to give it to someone I think that would be fine.

When I began fixing a computer there is a list of things I try to see if I can identify the problem. Basically I'll eliminate what is not causing the problem until I finally get down to what is causing the problem. I can fix most anything except I don't want to replace a defective motherboard. It is not cost effective and takes too much time. I've even been successful in fixing screens on laptops.

Posted at 10:33 am in General | Comments (0)

TV Sunday

Sun 15 August 2010

It's an overcast Sunday here in Vero - good day to watch TV. Trouble is almost every day is a good day to watch TV unless I've got a project. I've got a couple projects coming but I'm having to wait on the "clients". Both are revenue generating projects for people I do not know but referred to by satisfied folks whom I've helped. In fact, I have one referral from a buddy in Atlanta I helped which has bloomed into one referral after another. As long as I like the projects I'll keep doing them - when I get to the point I don't like them, I'll quit unless I need to generate income to pay Obama taxes and fees.

I'm into season 4 of "24" - I started last Sunday. Today I got through episode 20 and then stopped - usually I watch 2 to 4 episodes a day. This season #4 may be the best one yet. One thing which is a ongoing theme in the series is the continual conflict among and between the characters especially at the counter terrorist office in LA. This season 4 has a lot of twists and turns and of course lots of people die.

On Friday I took Starr to the Ocean Grill for a 2 1/2 hour lunch - it was a beautiful day as well as being Starr's birthday. The food was great and of course the view was second to none here in Vero. I've never seen Starr drink much and I've never seen her drink a martini but after all, it was her birthday. We both had a shrimp dish - her's was rock shrimp and mine was regular shrimp. Hmmmmm. She - like me - doesn't particularly like birthdays any more except I was able to tell her she is only one year away from early social security which I recommended she take. This SS black hole will get worse until the system is changed but those of us already on it will likely be "grandfathered" into whatever we have once the system is changed.

After lunch Starr & I tried to help son John with the details of registering at FSU for the Fall term. He's in but there are still hoops to jump through before classes begin. I don't see a problem on the horizon but at the same time these things need to be completed. Next week is the important week for John.

Posted at 04:49 pm in General | Comments (0)

Friday the 13th

Fri 13 August 2010

It's Friday the 13th...what are you going to do or avoid doing today? It's also Starr's birthday so I'm taking her to lunch at the Ocean Grill or just maybe the Citrus Grillhouse if she wants to try that place. I've never been there but I'm certainly willing to give it a go. It's my understanding it's right on the ocean too like the Grill. I so rarely go out to eat my knowledge of restaurants is very limited. The Ocean Grill is my all time favorite here in Vero.

The same people who own and run the Grill have leased The Patio restaurant and will make it a Mexican restaurant . What?! For those who know can you imagine The Patio as a Mexican Restaurant? I can't. It will open next month so I guess I'll have to give it a go just to see what it is all about. I bet it will be a lot different than Taco Bell!

The Little League play offs started this week which will lead up to the Little League world series later this month. I enjoy watching these games because the young players are not perfect like those in the Major Leagues think they are. Rather than shooting a bird at the crowd when an error is made, the Little League players cry. Yesterday a player hit a home run - the picture cried. These guys also make a lot more mistakes so you never know what is going to happen. I don't think there are games today but there will be tomorrow on ESPN2.

Tuesday I went to vote in the primaries here in Vero. TB was my source of local political information but he and I disagree on the candidates for Governor. I like Rick Scott - TB likes Bill MacCullan. Scott has some very positive adds about what he wants to do - MacCullan just has attack adds against Scott. MacCullan is too much of an old fashion politician while Scott is a very successful business man with conservative views. We shall see.

The Captain Matt computer I refurbished then gave to Starr has died for the moment. We get a warning about the IDE hard drive failure - I think it will need a new hard drive so I bought one on eBay twice the size of the current hard drive. It comes from a used (leased) computer which means it's not new of course but the seller says it's like new. For under $30 including shipping I thought I'd buy it. Between now and the time it arrives I'll work on the current hard drive to see if I can get files off of it then reformat the drive. For the warning, I think the drive itself is corrupt. Stay tuned.

There's a good bit of other stuff going on with me but for today I think it best if I not go any further. Some things need to be private - I wouldn't want everyone to know I'm having a sex change for example!

Posted at 09:31 am in General | Comments (0)


Sun 08 August 2010

The weekend has come to an end - I took in a couple movies and a BBC episode of "A Touch of Frost". The movie "Armored" was not very good - I can not recommend it. In fact, sometimes I get invested in time I don't want to stop watching but at the same time I don't like it. This one was just not good along the same lines that Repo Man was not good. The actors in both films were good it's just the story line I didn't much like. The other movie - "The Education of Charlie Bamks" - was just average. Heck I'm spoiled - I want good, exciting, action - filled mystery/intrigue movies.

There's a new 3 episode series on the BBC called "Sherlock" I really like at lest I liked the first episode. I've got the other two episodes downloaded which includes the last one played on Sunday. A search on the internet suggests there may be more episodes - I for one would love to see more. It is the Sherlock Homes theme only set in modern London - the dude playing Sherlock is one smart guy. I'm sure I'll watch the next two soon while hoping for more.

For the first time since I returned from the Keys, it rained here in Vero. We really needed the rain - it's been dry around here. Early Sunday afternoon it got so dark outside it looked like it was 9 PM at night. Hopefully we'll get more rain soon.

I've discovered a new means (new to me anyway) of communicating with those of you using cell phones - I don't own a cell phone but I would if I needed one. I'm able to use my telecommunication ability using only my brain without the need for expensive hardware like a smart phone. When that doesn't work because the person I'm trying to contact is "off" my wave length, I can text them from my computer. There's a utility I've found which will not only send a text message to a cell phone but can actually receive a text message back from the cell phone. Once contact has been established then I can "chat" with a person on a cell phone just like they were on another computer using AIM, Messenger, or Skype. Cool, huh?

If you get a request to text with me, you'll have to 'accept' by texting "yes" - this avoids cell phone users from getting a lot of spam. The request will be from "Cherple" so look for it - if and when you get a request just accept it then you'll be able to receive my pearls of wisdom. The service is free but "regular" texting rates apply based on the cell phone user's plan. Just so you can try it yourself, I've loaded the utility to my this website - you can use it by clicking on "SMS" in my navigation bar.

Posted at 07:22 pm in General | Comments (0)

Syp's Family

Sat 07 August 2010

Recently I called my little Dutchie buddy Syp - I was hoping to call late enough to wake up his two young sons but I failed. He & Sjak are both doing well as are the two boys, Yari & Djem. Syp reports they grow like weeds always into this, that, and the other thing. I'm glad he & Sjak are handling their first 10 to 12 years of growing - I think I'd go batter than I already am. Syp's mom is at home which is a good thing but still has an illness going on - they go to the doctors this coming week for an update.

You folks know how much I love fruit, right? Well this is the time of year when fresh fruit from the US is at its best. The peaches are really good now as are the melons. Fresh mangos are everywhere here in the sunshine state - people bring them in by the buckets to my coffee meeting. Apples are always available but sometimes better than others. I normally eat two apples a day. If an apple a day keeps the doctor away just think what 2 apples a day will do!

the end of this month I make my doctor rounds again. I have appointments with my dentist, dermatologist, and psychiatrist - these are just "regular" appointments. I see my dentist & dermatologist twice a year but I'm so whacked I need to go to my shrink 4 times a year. I don't particularly like all these appointments but I'd really not like what might happen if I didn't go for check-ups. I've gone to doctors more times since I've been back to Vero than in my whole time in Atlanta - if not, close to it. Jeez!

I've watched some of the movies I've downloaded. One called "Seven Pounds" with Will smith was AWLFUL! DEPRESSING! Who ever wrote this script need serious help IMO. Another movie called "Repo Man" was not very good either - I wouldn't waste my time on it. Same with the import called "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo." I've really picked some losers of late,huh? The exception is a movie called "The Ghost writer" - now that was darn good.

Kathryn sometimes wakes up in the middle of the night only to discover nothing of interest on TV. She told me she wish she could watch some old Clint Eastwood westerns. Ask and ye shall receive. I downloaded 10 of Easterwood's best westerns then transferred the files to her laptop so she can watch the movies at home on her big TV like I do. She is a very happy camper but I'm afraid I've awaked a monster soon to be addicted to downloading movies like am! You know people like me...way too much of a good thing is never enough!!

Posted at 03:33 pm in General | Comments (0)

Back in Vero

Tue 03 August 2010

OK already - I've heard the roar of complaints because I've taken a week off from sharing my pearls of wisdom with you folks. When I go back from the Keys, I just did not feel the energy to post and I was busy settling back into my Vero lifestyle. I'm just about there but not just yet - maybe by weekend.

My phone has been ill for the last 36 hours or more in that it would only ring once - if at all - when I had a call coming in. Then it got to the point when I did pick it up, there wouldn't be anyone on the line. Add a bunch of irritating static to the mix and I really had a mess. I called AT&T this morning for a repair order - I think it's back to normal now. That was a quick fix.

This morning I visited with Tom & Mary Ann before they headed back to Atlanta. Because Of John's need to get back to FSU, we missed them in the Keys this year. I got a gift of their ice cream so I returned the favor with some fresh baked cookies and a Key lime bar from Debbiy-Doos. No word on when they will return again but I suspect it will be in a few weeks if they can. TB was there this morning as well - I may have to play musical trucks with him. He wants to leave vehicle one then pick up vehicle two or something like that.

When I returned to Vero, I noticed how much later the sun was coming up each day - it's setting earlier as well. You don't notice the change so much when you're in a location but if you leave for a month then return, it is very noticeable. I've had to rest my landscape lights for the changes.

I guess you know by now John is in fact going to FSU for the Fall semester. The school sure waited a long time before they reviewed his admission. Yesterday John called for a chat - I could tell he was a bit befuddled with what's going on at the present. He's uncertain about the courses he'll take, his jobs are still be scheduled, he and David (roommate) are changing their TV & internet service, and on top of that, another guy and his girlfriend want to move in u8ntil they get a new apartment. John is indeed frazzled but this too will pass.

Today Starr came by for a visit - Tommy showed up about the same time. Jeez I'm popular - what can I say. The thing is my house is "half way" between places people go like to the beach, publix, MB's house, etc. Plus, my house is cool and offers a full service bar - someone has to drink that stuff. Trouble is, rarely do any of my guests drink a beer or Crown. I may have to pour the 'old' Crown down the sink unless someone helps me out with it!

Posted at 02:31 pm in General | Comments (0)

Finding Debbiy's

Thu 22 July 2010

These past fee days have been very busy with Wendy, Jeff, and Amy here - Wendy has left now but Jeff & Amy are still here until Saturday. Tommy arrived back here yesterday afternoon and of course the whole entourage are expected here tomorrow evening - I'll likely be asleep so they have to wait until morning to see my smiling face. HaHaHa.

On Tuesday evening I hosted a catered dinner here at my 4th floor villa for John, Jeff, Amy & Wendy - it was WONDERFUL. Last week I found a small little deli who's owner will cook meals, bake just about anything, and offers fresh sandwiches with home made bread in her deli. You can find meats, cheeses, and all sorts of homemade products for sale - this place is a gold mine IMHO.

The dinner was stuffed pork loins with garlic rosemary potatoes , a salad with mozzarella cheese and home made balsamic vinaigrette dressing, and fresh fruit - pineapple, melon, and strawberries. The meal was full of flavor - it was excellent! She even delivered the whole meal right to my door - I promise you I will not hesitate to use Debbiy [sic] again. I did not make a spelling error, that's how she rights her name. She also baked a Key Lime pie for us that is the best we've ever had down here! OMG...it was fabulous. I'll have her back another one so I can take it back to Vero.

On Tuesday afternoon John, Jeff, and Amy went out on kayaks for almost 4 hours. They went all over the bay side discovering new things you can't see in a boat. The picture today is one John took while on the trip. Tuesday evening John went to bed earlier than any other night since he's been here. With a morning at the gym, afternoon rowing, and all the sun he was a tired puppy.

This week I've worked on Don's computer in an effort to set up a wireless connection for his desktop I fixed and I've had pool duty every day - with TB gone we've not been boating. Tommy offered Drew's boat to John & Jeff but it's been way to windy to take it out - the wind has been with us every day for a week now. Tomorrow we expect more wind with rain as the tropical depression moves into our area - we sure hope it will not hang around long. For the folks arriving this weekend for their 10 days in paradise it would be nice to have some good boating weather. TB wants to take Jeff & Amy out today but with the wind we have this morning, it may not be possible. All the same, TB & John are going to the marina to put the Cracker back into the water - it's been on a rack for the week TB was gone.

Sure hope the weather doesn't put a cloud over lobster season - did you like my pun?

Posted at 09:30 am in General | Comments (0)


Mon 19 July 2010

It's been rather slow around here because the weather has been nasty - today is the first day since Thursday the sun is out without an overcast or a lot of wind. It has been very windy for the last 4 days with nothing but clouds. This is the dawn of a new week of sunshine I hope.

Jeff & Amy arrived on Saturday morning along with a friend of theirs from Dallas. We all went to Lorelei for a nice 2 o'clock lunch on their deck by the bay. This was my first order of peel & eat shrimp - the others had blackened dolphin - it was all very good. Jeff & Amy have not changed at all - they both were very happy to be here in paradise rather than Hotlanta. We didn't see them yesterday but I'm sure we will see them again soon. In fact, I've found a place here in Islamorada where the owner/cook will fix just about anything I want so I'm thinking about ordering a meal for us to have tomorrow night - I'm waiting to here back from Jeff now.

Last evening we met Wendy and two of her friends at the upscale restaurant called Pierre's. I've not been to this fine dining establishment since I started going to coffee meetings 9 years ago. It is very nice, the service was excellent, and the food was wonderful - it was rather pricey too. It cost us about $75/person without ordering a bottle of wine although John & Wendy had a glass of wine - the bar bill was paid separately. Basically it is about twice as expensive as Lazy Days, Uncles, etc. mainly because everything was a la carte - we paid $11 for your basic house salad for example. We all enjoyed it but I must admit it's too expensive to visit more than once IMHO.

Later today Wendy's friends are flying home in their plane so we will fetch Wendy in Marathon to bring her back here. This is the first time I've seen Wendy in person since I left Atlanta although I do talk with her on Skype on a regular bases. It was fun talking about some of the adventures we've had together all over this big blue ball call Earth. Some of our escapades are hilarious - I enjoyed revisiting some of these places. I'm sure we'll talk a lot more about our trips in the next couple days.

Here is a picture from last evening.

Posted at 09:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Bad Weather

Fri 16 July 2010

We've had down right sh*tty weather here for the last two days. yesterday it was mostly overcast all day with heavy thundershowers late in the day and into the night. Lots of thunder and lightening. John and I saw some "new arrivals" in the hot tub last night around 8:30 when there was lightening everywhere - BWT I met these 20-something folks in the pool the day before. It was not a good time to be in the hot tub IMHO.

It's been overcast all day with lots of wind. Wind, wind, and more wind - white caps on the ocean everywhere. Some gust got up into the 30 - 49 mph range with steady wind at 10 mph. The thunder was so loud you could hear the windows in our condo shutter. The bad news is this pattern is going to hang around over the weekend according to some locals with whom I've talked.

When John was fishing the other night on the sea wall, he managed to cause his cellphone to fall into the ocean - we discovered it is not the waterproof model. For John and a lot of other young people, a cellphone is as important as breathing! While he was having major withdrawal symptoms since Wednesday night, he got everything resolved when Sprint sent a new phone overnight - he is remarkably better today night that his link to the outside world has been restored. You should have seen all the calls & messages which accumulated in just a day - he was contacted by more people than I even know! I do understand his frustration while without a cellphone - I would feel the same way without a computer I think.

While at coffee this morning a lady told me about a great little deli with what she described as wonderful food. I went by after coffee to talk with the owner who's name is Debbiy (I spelled it correct). She bakes all kind of stuff, makes the best sandwiches on the island according to some and even fixes an evening type meal although there's no menu for the evening - she fixes different things based on what she wants to do that day. I like her and her little shop a lot so I'll be going by to sample her cuisine. I didn't see a key lime pie so I asked her if she makes them - her response was I'll make some today so come back around 2PM. The pie looks fabulous - it had just come out of the oven so it was still very warm. She told me to put it in my freezer which is were it is now. Key lime pie report to follow soon.

John took this picture from our 4th floor patio. The hot dude is me.

Posted at 03:10 pm in General | Comments (0)

Night Fishing

Thu 15 July 2010

Have you boys and girls been watching the island cam? There are not many folks here this time of the year which means quite often we might been the only ones in the pool. I like to listen to Rush while I soak but I don't do it for the whole 3 hours. When I get out of the pool I smell like chlorine which I guess is better than my usual odious self. The pool is very nice this year.

Of course JV went to the gym returning in the early afternoon. What gets me is he's usually gone 4 hours - what do you do in a gym that long?! I know it's a 15 to 20 minute drive each way but even so, he sure does work out a long time. I've not got any problems with his schedule by the way, I'm just jealous I don't have all the energy John has! Youth sure does have it's advantages, huh?

We went to Winn Dixie for the usual stuff - bread, milk, deli meat, juices and of course ice cream. Blue Bell has a new flavor I bought to try - it's called candy jar - Mmmm. I wonder if there are any calories in this ice cream? After the Winn Dixie trip we decided to eat in last night or actually out on our balcony - there was a breeze and no bugs. Without a breeze, there are bugs around here and believe it or not they like old, tough, nasty me almost as much as they like John.

Later this morning I'm going to see if I can help Robin with a computer issue. Yesterday as we were going shopping Robin came into the gate on his hog (motor bike) and he mentioned the problem. At this point I don't know what it's all about but of course I'd like to help if I can. As soon as TB returns from Vero I'll have a Windows 7 installation disk I know works because I used it on this machine - I'll try to put the OS on John's laptop as well as Robin's daughter's laptop.

While I was watching a movie last night John went down to the sea wall to fish. This night fishing on the sea wall is an annual event and there have been many times when something was caught - often a shark. Heck a tarpon was caught a couple years ago by a fried of Bridget's while they were visiting. I've not talked to John this morning but as of about 11:15 last night the only thing he was catching was a buzz!

Posted at 09:12 am in General | Comments (0)

Our Day

Wed 14 July 2010

Tommy left for Vero yesterday morning so without a early "boat event" planned, John slept in until late morning. Of course I got up to go for coffee and socialize with my fellow coffee drinkers - we had a good gathering yesterday. I talked to TB late morning and he had arrived safely to Vero - he was at his office.

Of course JV went to the gym while I went to Robin's apartment to burn a new DVD with Windows & installation files on it. The burn was successful but once again I got an error about 40% into the installation process saying some files were missing. At this point I'm not sure the files were missing from the disk or from the laptop on which I was trying to install windows 7. I do have an installation disk I used for this laptop I'm using now so I asked TB to bring it down when he returns - my cousin, Alice the cake backer, will get into my Vero villa to retrieve the DVD for TB.

Of course I had pool duty during Rush's radio show - John joined in once he returned from pumping iron. We decided to go looking for some gifts at various shops here in Islamorada with some degree of success I might add. I'm not going to mention anything in case a potential gift recipient reads this post. I did buy John a large "Conch Republic" flag to hang over his closet door at school - it's a cool flag.

While in the pool "UVA Jim" came in to bore me once again with the same old sh*t I hear every year. You know, his condo in Key West, his condo in the Bahamas, what he eats, etc. When our little group is here it gives him fresh meat with which to bloviate. On the other hand, Jim with his dog is always interesting.

Last night was a clean the left-overs out of the frig night. We ate out on the porch which is usually very nice but with zero wind it was hot - returning to the AC was the only thing to do. Plus, there are bugs without wind. No plans have been formulated for this evening's dining - we are going to Winn Dixie this afternoon. I'm out of ice cream!! We need bread, cereal, fruit, etc. Young John can eat about 3 times as much as the average guy so bread and meat do not last long.

Today's picture was taken by John last night as he was doing laundry - the sunsets look like this almost every night. For some reasons, the sunsets here in the Keys are always better than most other places.

Posted at 10:14 am in General | Comments (0)

Busy, Busy

Mon 12 July 2010

One would thing one comes to the Keys to kick back but we'll have none of that! TB, John, and I have been busy everyday most all the day. It takes an effort to keep you boys and girls informed with this, that, and the other thing going on. What do I mean exactly you ask?

Take today for example. At 6:30 I got John up to go meet Tommy, have breakfast, and then go fishing with Jim who lives here year round. They went out to the 409 hump fishing hoping to catch blackfin tunas or dolphin - today was not a catching day. They got back in in time for a late lunch and now John is off to the gym as he is most every day.

Yesterday I agreed to load Windows 7 onto Robin's daughter laptop - the OS just like the one I'm using now. It was tough to find a DVD burner to mount the ISO file but it turns out Robin just bought a new laptop with a DVD burner. I burned the file then tried to install the OS on Mandy's laptop but after it gets to the 40% completion it fails giving a file error - I tried twice. So today I went next door to Bud & Mary's to use their DVD burner but it wouldn't even burn - what's up with that? Then I tried Don's computer - the one I fixed last week - but once again I got an error message. Have several attempts I decide to use Robin's laptop again with a freshly downloaded ISO file and a new disk as soon as he returns.

My cat sally is better but we are going to take her back to the Vet tomorrow at 9AM then John will go off to the gym. I think TB is going back to Vero tomorrow for a few days - he says he has grove work to do. Frankly, I think he should hire someone to do the work while he stays here but you know how stubborn he can be. After lunch, JV & I are going shopping for his GF.

For the last couple days Tommy has been cooking for us. Last night it was fresh scallops cooked on the grill and it was fresh yellowtail the night before - we are not going hungry. TB loves to cook, John loves to eat, and I obsess over clean-up - the system works very well. The 3 of us can have a seafood dinner for about a third of the cost of Lazy Days or Uncles. With TB gone John and I have cereal to survive on until he returns. Ya.... you believe that don't you?

I've become very popular among the few residents here because the word is out I can help with computer issues. Worry not .....I do not let anything get in the way of my pool duty. Of course I go for coffee every morning and was the guest speaker at Saturday's 8PM speaker's meeting. So many heard about my speaking we almost had to move to a football stadium to accommodate everyone. HaHaHa It went well and of course I like to hear myself talk.

Now I've got more pool duty. John has been doing laps in the pool - see picture.

Posted at 03:09 pm in General | Comments (0)

Boat Trips

Sat 10 July 2010

Tommy and John took Buddy Emmit and his wife fishing - the weather was iffy in the AM so they didn't leave until just after noon. The found birds and weed but after 8 hours of fishing they got two small dolphin and one big enough to keep. When they returned to the docks around 8 everyone was tired but said they had a good day. I stayed behind this time because I knew the length of the trip was open-ended - I prefer knowing how long I might be out.

John came in beat...I mean really tired. We order a rib dinner take-out from Outback and after eating it John went to bed. Today the same people who went fishing went out diving but once again the weather was bad until about noon. I expect them back anytime from the trip but I've got got a clue as to how long the clean-up will take. You know the routine - flush the motors, clean the boat, refill the tanks, wash & dry the dive gear, etc. It has tuned out to be a very nice day. Once again I stayed here knowing I've got to be good to good at the night version of a coffee meeting. I've been ask to speak so I'm sure we'll need to move the meeting to a local stadium to accommodate all the attendees. Once the word is out I'm the Saturday night speaker there will be lines waiting to hear me. Then again, if the word is out, we may have to bring people in from the street so somebody will be there!

We had trouble with out Comcast TV this time so a repair guy came out. There was a bad cable running from the wall to the TV so a new cable fixed the problem - I TV is really good now but it still is a damn analog TV. I can't conveniently watch my video media so maybe I'll just not watch any until I return to Vero. When I do return, I've offered to help Buddy & his wife with their computer problems - they've been screwed by the same people who tried to screw Walter. The computer people really pulled the wool over their eyes so they ended up not even retrieving the computer in question.

They think it got a virus but the people at the shop said they needed a new hard drive - I'd try to re-install the operating system first because that would wipe the drive clean in the first place. They also said they could not recover the files on the drive..really? Hmm... I wish I had that machine because even if it did need a new hard drive the rest of the hardware worked. I think this fix-it shop takes advantage on folks who for the most part don't know anything about their computer.

The pool is very nice and warm enough for me - daily pool duty is required. John comes in once and awhile between feedings. That boy can eat! John has feedings about every 3 hours all the time he's awake. He can eat anything and as much as he likes - I warned him that will not always be the case. You remember what it was like to be 22 don't you?

Posted at 03:27 pm in General | Comments (0)

Fishing Today?

Thu 08 July 2010

This early morning we had those real loud thunder-boomers come through starting around 3:30 and lasting until just after 7. Tommy was taking some Vero friends out fishing this morning with John as his first mate but the weather postponed the trip. Now that it is clearing up I think they may still go later today. The radar looks a lot better now compared to 6:30 this mmorning. I was not going because of two things - my coffee meeting and I did not want to be on the boat all day which is a real possibility if the afternoon "bite" kicks in. I'm old and now would prefer a half day trip rather than a 12 hour marathon which doesn't include the preparation or clean-up upon return. The verdict is still out for a later trip.

TB bought some fresh yellowtail yesterday at the fish market so we all dined on this wonderful fish along with grits of course. The meal was really great! John and I were wondering how we would survive without Mary Ann here to prepare all her culinary delights - TB has taken up some of the slack. Of course we can always go out but a $70 meal every night can wear on me. I think tonight might very well be another night out.

We went T-shirt shopping yesterday however I could only find one T-shirt I really wanted. So many of them are too "loud" for me or too tourist-like for me. I'll likely get another Guy Harvey but that may be all. John found a pink Guy Harvey T-shirt he thought would be great for his bartending duties at FSU. You know how outrages bartenders can be in their dress. The shirt looks good on him.

I'm keeping up my pool duty tasks pretty much every day starting at noon. The water in the pool is WONDERFUL so sitting in the pool while I listen to Rush continues to be my mid-day activity. John gets up every morning to head for the gym around 9 - he returns after 12 or even sometimes after 1. Just how long can you workout? Jeez! With the long days here there is still plenty of time to do other things.

You folks remember Don don't you? Well it turns out his gaming computer is dead so I told him I'd give it a once-over. The computer will not start - no fans or the hard drive will come on. I think the power supply is bad so I ordered another one from eBay with the intent of replacing the old power supply. It will not be easy to get it out then put a new one in but I'll try as soon as I get the newer one delivered. I usual give a "tip" to Don for the time we're here - if I get his computer working again, this will be my tip for this year.

Just got a call from TP here at 9 - I think the trip is back on again.

Posted at 08:54 am in General | Comments (0)

Scuba Diving

Tue 06 July 2010

Monday was a rather slow day around here because of the wind and rain. The roads were like a parking lot with all the weekend visitors headed back to where ever. Last even we all ate left overs or take home from Lazy Days the night before. Today (Tuesday) was more interesting.

Sally Cat has been sneezing a lot, not eating much, and not as active as usual so I took her to the vet this morning - she has an upper respiratory infection. She had a fever and there was fluid in her lungs so the doctor gave her an anti-biotic and some other kind of shot. We are to return in a week for follow-up and more shots if needed. I think she has been hanging around Tommy too much and got the infection from him. I'm glad we went in today before it got any worse - I hope the shots will fix her.

Late morning we all piled onto the boat with our dive gear and headed to Alligator - TB & John went diving while I guarded the boat and listened to Rush on the radio. They were under for just over a hour - both said they enjoyed the dive. Of course once back at the docks the work began on cleaning everything and....yep, you guessed it...flush the motors. I sometime think Tommy takes the boat out just so he can flush the motors. One thing for sure is that boat should last a long time the wayTB takes care of it.

I've been trying to find a DVD burner so I can mount an ISO file on it - my computer only has a DVD player, not a burner. I talked to the guy that owns Bud & Mary's and he said to just come over to see if one of his computers has a burn. Desktops are much more likely to have burns than are laptops. The ISO fife is an installation file for windows 7 Ultimate which I plan on installing on John's laptop - I have this operating system installed on my laptop. This is a fully functional copy of the OS which installs and is then good to go. It may die at some point but for the recent pass it's been working for me. Anyone else for Windows 7?

Posted at 06:30 pm in General | Comments (0)

Boat Ride

Mon 05 July 2010

Another day in paradise and while it was overcast in the morning the skies were bright and clear by 11AM. We all had "pool duty" from about 1 to 2:30 yesterday but then it was time for "boat duty". Tommy has not taken his boat out since it arrived on Friday so it was time. Besides, after running the boat there would be an opportunity to flush the motors. We went out the Holiday Isle bridge then came in at the Bud & Mary's bridge but stopped for a swim just North of Alligator light before returning.

The water here is clear and warm enough for mew to get into it as I did yesterday. It is really nice folks - wish you were here. Ty and John did some snorkeling - they both found lobsters waiting for our return in a few weeks. I have a feeling this might be a good year for gathering bugs. TB and I just jumped into the water and enjoyed the ocean. Being in the ocean is a lot more fun than the pool IMO.

While going out the channel at Holiday Isle we saw tons of boats at the sandbar on both sides of the channel. Tommy seemed to be amused when several people yelled "Cracker" as we went by. The place was really crowded with loud music (my favorite), half naked people, and lots of adult beverages of course. Ty and John wanted to stop but Tommy wanted to keep on going as did I. He doesn't like all the crowds thinking it would be hard to park the boat or it might get hit - both are true of course.

We did not go to see fireworks although John did call Holiday Isle and Morada Bay - neither had displays. At my coffee meeting this morning I was told WorldWide had fireworks but who would know? Nonetheless, we could see and hear folks shooting off fireworks all around us. I was really tired so I went to bed about 9:30 and even John was in bed (alone) by 10. It's tiring having all this activity on us old folks but last night Ty & John were not far behind.

John and I had left overs from Lazy Days around 6:30 but John also had a second feeding at 8:30 with TB & Ty - TB grilled chicken. At the time they were eating I was having my daily requirement of ice cream and Key Lime pie. I bought a whole pie from the Midway Cafe which is good by the way but not better than some others. I can tell you the Key Lime pie at Winn Dixie is on the bottom of the scale - I'll not buy that again.

I'm not sure what the day will bring but it is nice and sunny at 9AM. If you want to see the Island Cam, click on the link here on BillsView.

Posted at 08:59 am in General | Comments (0)

We're Here

Sun 04 July 2010

We made it safely to the Keys in less than 4 hours including a stop in Key Largo at the Comcast office for a TV box. This year I decided to get a Comcast box so we can get all the channels I get in Vero plus some premium channels like HBO, Showtime, etc. Don't get me wrong, we are not staying in the apartment watching TV but when we are in I like to have all the options. I set on the TV box without a problem but once again I had a problem with Comcast internet service. It turns out my modem was not getting a signal so a service dude came out to check it out the next day. It seems there was a wire loose on the roof so that was easily fixed - what was not easy is my modem still did not work. When trying to connect it gave me a message "your modem is no longer supported by Comcast". Jeez! So John went back to Key Largo to get a modem.

We had a self install kit which failed on my 6 attempts both with my computer and John's computer. One time I got a message saying my operating system was not supported!! What's up with that - I have Windows 7 Ultimate on this laptop. Finally I called Comcast technical support and fortunately got a sweet young lady that new what she was doing. We ended up having to change our assigned IP and then reset my computer to the new IP. All works well now with really fast speed. BTW, while waiting to get Comcast up and running, we were able to connect to the WiFi here at the complex - we could not connect in years past.

John has been helping TB unload all his stuff from the boats, the red truck, and his Tahoe - this was a two day event. Ty drove the red truck down from Vero on Friday - he's rented a car to drive back to Vero on Tuesday. At this point we are set up and ready to do whatever. The usual first trip to Winn Dixie was a $187 event - John and I had to get all the basics. The future trips to Winn Dixie should not be as pricy now that we have butter, bread, milk, fruit, mayo, etc.

We've gone out to eat 2 of the 3 nights we've been here - first to Outback and then to Lazy Days. Both meals were really good but the prices sure have gone up. Since last year, I think the menu prices have gone up 15% to 20% - no kidding. Of course everything is more costly here in the Keys so I expect some higher prices - I'll give another report after we go to a few more eateries.

John has joined "Froggies" which is his local gym while here in the Keys. As many of you know, John is addicted to going to the gym which he does just about every day. Of course I go to the 7 AM coffee meeting every day as well - most people I see I've known from years in the past. I feel at home here in Islamorada.

The pool is very nice which for me means the water is not too cold. We've not been on the boats yet but will likely go out today if the weather is good - it's a bit overcast this morning. Tonight there are fireworks at a couple places like Morada Bay and Holiday Isle - I'm not sure what we might do. On our first day here we went to the Tiki Bar at the Outback where John met a waitress who has asked John to go drinking every night with her "group" - mostly waiters and bartenders from next door. I'm sure John will be invited to join the crowd this evening as he has once before - it's nice to know some "locals".

Today's picture was taken by Ty on his cell phone while we were at Lazy days for dinner. I had a wonderful shrimp-pasta dish - looks good, huh?

Stay tuned.

Posted at 09:19 am in General | Comments (0)

Heading to Paradise

Wed 30 June 2010

I've been getting ready for our trip to Islamorada - I think I've got it together now. I'm sure I've packed more than I really need given the fact we have access to a washer/dryer. At least I've got it down to one duffel-style bag for clothes, a small nylon bag for my computer stuff, and my computer bag. I don't pack Polo shirts but rather just keep them on hangers. It's all the other "stuff" that surprises me a bit like my personal pharmacy, Sally Cat food and litter box, etc.

You can tell you're getting older by the amount of prescription drugs you have to pack to go out of town. Jeez! I have 4 different prescriptions for my headaches depending on severity. Then there's my psycho drugs, sleeping aids, and God only knows what else. Some of these I will not need but I know I'd need them if I didn't have them!

This morning I got the travel cage I use for Sally out and put it in my office with the door open. She's gone in there twice today just to nap so she'll be more accustomed to it when I put her in it tomorrow. Actually, she has learned to manage traveling rather well compared to the first long trip from Atlanta. Basically she just sleeps as long as I pet her every once and awhile. Now I've got to sneak her into the apartment and keep the apartment cat hair free.

I was thinking about doing some food shopping before we leave to save some $$. But once I saw all the crap I'm taking not to mention John's wardrobe it became very clear to me we've not got any extra room. A trip to the Winn Dixie will be on the top of our agenda once we get all our stuff moved into the apartment.

On the way down, I plan to stop at the Comcast store in Key Largo to pick up a modem (even though I'm taking a modem) and this year I'm going to get a Comcast box for the TV. Never have we rented a Comcast box but this year I think it will be a good idea because the TV in the apartment is an analog set. Many of the great programs I like are on channels which may not be available on an analog TV any more. Picking the equipment up on the way will save a $50 service call and a half a day wait for the service guy to appear. Because I have an account which is not active, I'd have to pay for a service call. I may get a premium channel as well.

Syp sent me some pictures from the Arends Clan vacation - here is one of them. Cut kids, huh?

Posted at 01:28 pm in General | Comments (0)

Syp's Mom is Better

Sun 27 June 2010

For years I've thought that weekends were just an inconvenience for me given the fact I've been self-unemployed for years. My regular tall shows on the radio and TV programming is different on the weekends. Of late my attitude has changed in that I'm so busy during the week that I welcome the weekend. Don't get me wrong, I understand how important weekends are for those who go to the office every day. Of course I LOVE weekends in the Fall because Saturdays are college football days. I'm not complaining because I like what I'm doing but for the most part I don't do much on the weekends except take in some British mysteries and a movie or two.

I've got great news from across the big pond - Syp's mother is doing much better after a hospital stay and some treatments. Truthfully I'm a bit surprised as to her recover in such a short time. Things are looking a whole heck of a lot better now than as recently as a few weeks ago. I know Syp and his family are feeling less stress now that she's better. I know how it is to deal with aging parents.

When I talked with Syp yesterday, he mention he, Sjak, and the two rugrats (see image) just returned from a nice 10 day stay on the island of Mallorca located off the coast of Spain in the Mediterranean Sea. What a great place to holiday with your family - it's surrounded by the sea and still remains fairly inexpensive compared to main land Europe. Wendy and I spent 3 weeks there several years back - I rented an apartment right on the ocean. I have very fond memories of Mallorca and soon I'll have some pictures from Syp of their holiday there.

You know I'm going to Islamorada soon so I thought I might check my car - you know...air in the tires, oil, windshield (aka windscreen) wash, etc. I've never had problems with my car burning oil but I thought I'd check it anyway. I searched and searched but could not locate the damn dipstick! When everything else fails, I someties resort to reading the owner's manual. The car does not have a dipstick - it has sensors which will display the oil levels on a screen in my car. Jeez! My other Mercedes did have a dipstick so of course I thought this one did too. Wrong!

I'm always discovering things my car has or will do I did not know before. For example I remotely unlocked my door the other day but before I opened it I started a conversation with someone. While I was talking, the door locked itself again - it seems it will auto-lock if you don't open the door in a certain period of time. I didn't know that. The list goes on and on - maybe I should actually read some of the owner's manual, huh? Oh, one other thing, I was looking for my battery and I could not find it - what's up with that? The manual told me it was under the spare tire in the trunk. Who would have thunk [sic] it?

Lina got the dreaded Koobooface virus on her computer - she called the other night. This is a rather annoying virus which spreads mostly through social websites like Facebook. It is very sneaky and can infect your computer while just visiting a website. The good news is I've dealt with Kooboo before so I knew what to do. The virus will block internet access for your browsers but will not block access for TeamViewer which I could use to work on Lina's machine. We got rid of it in about a hour.

Posted at 10:19 am in General | Comments (0)

Nice Weekend

Mon 21 June 2010

It w2as a nice weekend for me most of which I stayed away from my computers. Over the two day weekend I watched 4 more episodes of season 3 of "24" - I'm liking this season with just two episodes left. What I can say about "24" is if you are an actor, don't expect your job to last long unless you're Keifer Southerland. More people get killed off just about every episode it's got me thinking who will be left. Watching a few episodes on a weekend is a good plan for me except now I want to know how it ends.

You know I love this time of year because among other things I can get a lot of different fresh fruit - I love fresh fruit. The strawberries and peaches available now are really good - sweet and with flavor. Other times of the year the fruit is picked before it ever has a chance to get good flavor. The melons are naturally good as well as the grapes I buy. All in all there's never a better time to buy fruit than in June.

John arrived safely and came by on both Friday evening and Sunday afternoon - it's great to see him. I think he's bigger now than the last time I saw him - there's more there because of his workout routine. Frankly I think he should do a bit less weight training and more aerobic workouts. Young men get addicted to weight training which in itself is not bad as long as you don't go overboard - moderation is the key.

Both of the guys I'm helping want to come see me - one will be here later this morning and there other will come after coffee tomorrow. I'm enjoying me roll and I like the two young men. Frankly I should have been volunteering sooner without being asked so I'm thankful this all happened. BTW, you all know what I'm talking about don't you?

Starr brought me some jerk chicken on Friday she got from a chicken stand in front of her brother Steve's home/office. There's a group who sell this chicken at the Vero Friday Market in the park and at the Saturday market in Ft. Pierce. The Vero Market is closed until the Fall so Steve said they could sell jerk chicken in front of his place. Let me tell you...the chicken is GREAT! Full of flavor and just the right amount of heat - I'll go back this coming weekend.

I've just about decided to reinstall the operating system in my laptop - it has given me errors more frequently than it should and I get BSOD often. The failures are not major but a pain nonetheless. Also, I can't get me e-mail client to function and I know the settings are correct. I clean the computer regularly but there's still over two years of crap and unused programs so why not a fresh start?

Posted at 08:56 am in General | Comments (0)

Lost my Computer Work

Fri 18 June 2010

Just damn! I had a nice post ready for today which I spent some time typing and then the power at my house had an interruption which means I lost the whole damn thing!! My back-up battery did not save my work as I expected it to do. This battery is suppose to prevent the loss of work in process - what the heck went wrong? It is a 1350 watt backup which should be plenty big enough - maybe I really need to look into the settings. It does work by the way but not as quickly as it should. Just damn!

I'm so irritated now I don't feel like typing it all over again so here is a brief summary:

Marilynn in Atlanta had a problem with her Outlook e-mail program sending mail. After most of Wednesday afternoon I worked on it but it was Thursday morning when I fixed it - I had to run a tool to "repair" Outlook.

Charlie's computer is fix as much as I can fix it. The sound card is bad and unfortunately is hardwired to the mother board. I suggested he bid on some refurbished computers at eBay - I found one on which he is now bidding.

Everyday this week I've been spending a couple hours with the young men in my coffee group who have asked for my help. This has been and continues to be very rewarding for me and helpful to them I trust.

Last evening I watched a preview of a new series on the AMC network - this is the network with "breaking Bad". I LOVED the preview of this series called "Rubicon" which officially starts on August 1. It is exactly the type of spy - conspiracy program I tend to enjoy. Full of mystery and surprises around every corner - I'm sure this will be must see TV for me.

John is in town but I've not seen him yet - he got in late last night when his mom thought he'd be here by 2PM. Why am I not surprised?

TB left for Atlanta this morning to go to his sister's grandson's baptism - he'll be back Sunday night.

It's the weekend which means a new movie or two for me. That's all for now - more detail later.

Posted at 09:01 am in General | Comments (0)

Keys TV Issues

Tue 15 June 2010

When I go to the keys, I'd love to be able to take my video library with me - well I can take it of course but I want to be able to play it. My laptop can be the playing device but how do I get the video and audio on the TV in the condo? If it is new enough, I can always use a VGA cord which would be great but I'm not at all sure that older TV has a VGA plug - in fact I bet it does not. The TV is a analog TV not a digital. What to do? I've found that my laptop has a s-cord plug - not all laptops have such a plug. So I got a cord with a s-cord and audio plug at one end and RCA audio/video plus at the other end. It works! The picture is not all that great but it does work. I have to assume the TV has the RCA receptors on the back.

Now this leads me to potential problem number two. If I'm correct and it is an analog TV, then I'll only get about half of the channels I used to get because Comcast has changed their service. Soon I bet Comcast will not send any analog signals at all. So...I think I'll just rent a cable box for the month then turn it back in when I leave. This way I can get what I want. We'll see how things shake out once in the Keys.

I now have close to 1000 hours of video media on external hard drives. With new releases, I continue to add new video fairly frequently. New releases are easy to find - it's the older video releases which are much more difficult to find. There are people who go to movies the day they are released then video the whole movie with a video camera. I've never seen one of these but just for kicks, I'll give it a go. Of course the video can not be nearly as clear as a DVD rip but some say they are decent. We'll see.

I've finished on cleaning up Walt's computer - I uninstalled never used, defragged the laptop (took 7 hours), removed all old and temporary files, and then reduced the number of programs that open at boot. Many programs have absolutely no reason to open at boot - I even think some "normal" programs open at boot to gather data and invade my privacy. Good programs will ask permission but if you ever use a free program like I do, they put the data gathering permission in the EULA (end users' license agreement) that you have to agree to if you want the program. My belief is 99% of computer users never read the EULA - do you?

Posted at 02:26 pm in General | Comments (0)


Mon 14 June 2010

On weekends I like to watch a movie or two and this weekend I saw a darn good one - "Along Came a Spider" with Morgan Freeman. First, I like Morgan Freeman as an actor so that's a plus from the start. However, liking the actor is not enough - "Babel" with Brad Pitt sucked. The movie is just the kind I like with twists, turns, and surprises all the way through. You think you know something and then suddenly you discover you are wrong - you know how often I'm wrong...almost never! If you like the kinds of movies I like, this one is a winner.

I finished working on Charlie's computer at least for now. I worked on it off and on (mostly on) for three days. The computer was slow as older computers tend to be. I first cleaned it up but that did not help much so I decided to reinstall the operating system. Then I unistalled all the crap that comes pre-installed on a new computer - this machine must have had 20 games all in the 20MB to 30MB range in size. I pulled the antivirus resource hog out along with other programs Charlie will not use. Then it took me several hours to update everything including SP3 from Microsoft - his software was 6 years old. Alas, all this did not resolve the CPU usage problem.

What's up with all the CPU usage on what is basically a new machine? I did some extensive testing in disabling this and that but it still sucked the CPU at 80% to 95% - why? One cool utility I used called Process Explorer lists the programs including their CPU usage - your Task Manager will not list all the programs. It was a service called "Interrupts.". This service indicates a fault in some hardware and because after numerous attempts of failing to get his sound to work I've now determined it is the sound card which has failed causing the CPU usage and no sound. The bad news is his sound card is hard wired into his mother board. The computer works much better but without a new motherboard it will never be 100% again - I can't disable the "Interrupts" service.

I've gotten a new young man from my coffee group that asked for my help - wise young man he is to chose me. Now I've got two which is two more than I ever had before. Why now you ask? I guess it was just time - I didn't go looking but it happened. In case you're wondering, I'm very about this - I now have a captive audience to listen to my pearls of wisdom. Hopefully they will get something out of me which will be useful to them.

Speaking of young men, John returns to Vero this week and will be here until it's time for the Keys. Alex has been visiting him for the last week and will ride back with him on Wednesday (maybe Thursday). We've got a lot of catching up to do but then again we have a whole month in the Keys together so there will be plenty of time for that. Just what has John been up to I wonder - I guess I'll know soon.

Today's image is the before and after of my newest landscaping.

Posted at 10:44 am in General | Comments (0)

Things Going On

Fri 11 June 2010

Of late I've not been spending as much time working on computers like I did just a month ago - I've sort of given it a rest. In part, I've not had as many pleas for help and in part I've not got a current project. Having said that, I bet I'll get a project just coming out of the blue soon.

Today I'm going to work on the computer belonging to the folks who do my housekeeping. As I mentioned the other day, Charlie's machine seems to be using 80% to 100% CPU all the time. I now have the computer here in my office so I can do everything I need to do. Charlie said he reinstall the OS via the repair console but it still uses all that CPU for no apparent reason. Actually, I can now tell he did not do a clean install but a repair which now has some old programs not working at all. I think I'll do a "clean" install today because IO think he may have a rootkit or some other nasty thing still on his machine - I'll know later today.

Today I'm taking Starr to lunch at the Ocean Grill - now school is out, she can actually go to lunch. I've not been there in months - Starr says she has not been there in years. Those of you familiar with Vero know all about the history of the Grill - heck I went there prom night in high school. I know ...you're wondering how something that old can still stand, huh? Well I'm still standing so there!

I decided to watch a movie I downloaded - "From Paris with Love". What a GREAT movie - I really liked it. The movie had all the action, international intrigue, terrorists, suspense, and actors I like. John Travolta was the lead actor - he's also a favorite actor of mine. Travolta could take out a half a dozen Ninjas (all had automatic weapons) by himself and his pistol. How people firing automatic weapons can miss so much is beyond me except that's how it works in the movies. This movie was a winner IMHO.

It was time to have my car detailede again - I do this about every 4 or 5 months. The detail guy, Steve< drives his equipment over to my house and does the work here. He does an excellent job. He's cost competitive with the "big car washes' but he does a better job - I've tried both. Having him come to me is a bonus as well. He's a one man show but he works really hard for about 2 1/2 hours to detail my car inside and out. Good guy.

You know what time of the year it is, don't you? It's fruit season for some of my favorite fresh fruits. I love peaches and melons along with grapes, plums, etc. I tried some peaches but the season is too early - peaches are been picked before they are ripe enough for me. The melons and grapes are good and of course I can always have bananas and apples. I love fresh fruit - maybe that's how I got my family name.

Posted at 06:57 am in General | Comments (0)

More Doctors

Wed 09 June 2010

This morning I went to my doctor to review some lab tests - blood work to be exact. I'm taking a cocktail of medications from time to time that may cause adverse affects on my liver. The good news all is still well at this point. A few days ago I went to my psychiatrist who declared me to be chronically whacked - no news there, huh? So I asked for a second opinion - he said I was ugly too. Jeez!

This week I reinstalled the operating system in one of the computers owned by my cleaning service - are were amazed at the difference. Over the years we all tend to fill our commuters with crap and useless programs. reinstalling the operating system is a great way to reset everything.

They had another computer which was running at 80% to 95% CPU usage without opening any particular program. I cleaned it out, defragged it, scanned it, used HijackThis on it but I couldn't identify the culprit. I looked in the programs to find Microsoft SQL server installed - why in the world would that be there? The guy had no knowledge of it yet he said he bought the computer new. Why would your "off the shelf" computer have SQL server on it? I don't get it but I knew the SQL service was running which could be the CPU hog. I tried to unistall the application but it failed because it didn't have enough horse power to work. Then we got a blue screen, followed by a failed attempt to boot in the Safe Mode, followed by another attempt to do a system restore so we ran the "set up" from the recovery partition on the hard drive and that seemed to work. It would have been easier for me if I had the computer here rather than to try to do this remotely.

Starr came by for a visit - she'd taken son Alex to the airport so he could fly up to Talahassee to visit his brother John for a week then they'll drive back to Vero together next week. This was Alex's first trip on an airplane - it was a small 12 passenger plane. I want see what he thought about all this next week. School is out so Starr is not teaching now - she may still be doing some one -on - one work but I'm not sure.

I've not been to the beach in 10 days but planned to go today. Now it's starting to get cloudy so I'll wait for another day. We've been having heavy rain just about every afternoon - yesterday was an exception. It is clear we are in the typical Summer rain pattern here. This rain has helped my yard and the new plants - everything is looking go around here again. You can still see some damage from the cold Winter but soon that will all grow back.

Did I mention the problem I was having with my own computer recently? It had slowed down a lot compared to the lightening speed it first had. I discovered it was my security software - Kaspersky - which was the culprit. When I shut down Kaspersky, all was normal. After trying several suggestions offered on the Kaspersky forum and by tech support - none of which helped - I found the solution. I uninstalled the software then installed it anew and BINGO...all is well again.

Do any of you recognize today's picture from Islamorada?

Posted at 10:34 am in General | Comments (0)

Visitors Yesterday

Fri 04 June 2010

TGIF - even though I don't go into an office now, I still can sense the week and it continues to remain special. Many of the programs that I like but come on after my bedtime show a re-run on Saturday mornings. I also tend to watch a couple of movies and a few British mystery episodes. I usually don't go to my coffee group but all the same I can't sleep late - I still wake up early.

Yesterday was visitors day here at mia casa. After lunch Tom & Mary Ann dropped in for a visit while they're in town - I think they leave today. I mistakingly though they were going to wait until father's day weekend to return. We had a very nice visit although Sally cat followed Mary Ann around - she's allergic to cats. They did mention a brief Key's visit is not out of the question if all the stars align just right.

Next my house keeping people came over to drop off an infected computer. I found the very nasty Koobface worm. I'm scanning the machine now with Malwarebytes but if need be, I'll manually pull the nasty worm out by it's roots. This virus - worm is the most prevalent virus - worm - trojan on the internet today. It is very sneaking trying to sell you a fake antivirus program and steal your ID, passwords, etc. I'm not sure what I'll eventually end up doing but that's my current project.

TB came by after work at the very time we were having a raging thunderstorm. I'm always happy to give sanctuary in dangerous times. We talked about the Keys of course - TB is still intense about getting everything ready. Jeez! I think he's been getting ready since the end of March. When we first get there only TB, John, and I will be at The Palms. Of course John is likely to snag a few babes from next door or the Tiki hut. Tommy likes to cook so I bet we all will be fed well.

I went to Dr. Director yesterday mainly just to check in and get new scripts. I've learned to call the pharmacies ahead of time to make sure they have the pills I need. Yesterday they did not have enough but said they would by noon today - I'll call before I go all the same. We decided to keep everything as it is for now. You know me, I'm addicted to "more" so I think it is prudent to keep on the same path until something changes.

In the next hour, my young coffee club buddy wants to come by to talk. Even the young can recognize my wisdom on all things. They also recognize I'm full of crap too!

Posted at 10:17 am in General | Comments (0)


Wed 02 June 2010

Today I visited the local vampire in my doctor's office - she sucked a vile of my precious blood for testing. They're trying to identify my species - good luck with that I say. They'll also run some tests for a liver panel as a safety precaution because one of the meds I'm temporarily taking doesn't get along with human livers. But there's where I have the advantage - they only know about human livers! Next week I'll pay the big bucks for a doctor's visit for the sole purpose of telling me the results - why can't that be done on the phone? If he really needs to see me, then I'll come back, waste gas getting there, and waste time sitting in the office waiting for my appointment. Do you know the difference between God and doctors? God doesn't think he's a doctor!

I see more doctors in Vero since I've been here than I ever saw in Atlanta. Tomorrow I go back to my psychiatrist for my quarterly visit. He knows I'm whacked so why need I re-confirm that every three months? Actually it's a scheme to charge patients for writing prescriptions - one prescription can not be for longer than 90 days and must be delivered to a pharmacy - no call-ins allowed. You'd think I was getting morphine for god's sake. In case you didn't know, doctors can "call in" drugs like Vicodin, Valium, Percocet, or OxyContin but not my prescription. The strange thing is what I'm taking is not even an opioid! Why can't it be called in like strong opioids? Oh well, I really like seeing Dr. Director so this is really not a bad thing. When I'm with him, we usual talking about all sort of things except my prescriptions.

I've got to stop watching the news - every time I do I get irritated with the progressive - socialists in the Democrat party. This morning Senator Chris Dodd was on Imus in the Morning (show is from 5AM to (Am everyday on FOX Business News) talking about the oil mess in the Gulf - he blamed President Bush for the spill. Is anyone other than me so GD tired of the democrats blaming President Bush for everything? Obama continue to blame President Bush even though he's been in office for 18 months! When is that thin-skinned self-centered egotist going to start taking responsibility for the failures of his out of control socialist administration? Obama doesn't seem to care about much of anything except giving rights to terrorists, cheer on illegal aliens, and blame others for everything else. Just today I heard he was "too busy" to meet with the Governor of Arizona who he's bad-mouthed about the Arizona illegal alien law which by the way he's not read. He can go on vacation to Chicago, play golf, and greet athletic teams but he can't find time for the very important issues of government. He is so far out of his legal - he's not got a clue on how to run anything but his mouth as he reads what others have written for him. I'm sick of it!

My landscape guy finally finished the new landscaping, the cleaning of my bushes, and putting out ground cover all around my plants. I'm pleased with the results - the new black mulch really looks good. I'll take a picture to show you but it will have to wait until the rain stops.

Posted at 01:07 pm in General | Comments (0)

Memorial Day

Mon 31 May 2010

I know. I know. I've been away for a couple days - it's a holiday weekend. Really that's not a good excuse because pretty much every weekend is the same when you are an old retired fart. For those of you still working and contributing to the social security ponzi scheme I want you to know I appreciate your efforts. Next month I should actually receive my first old fart's payment - YaHoo.

This is Memorial Day here in the US - a day to honor the brave men and women who gave their lives in defense of freedom. I am truly thankful to these folks and the thousands of others still on active duty. It's just a real damn shame the President doesn't like the military or freedom - GD socialist pig! Today I'm not going to permit Obama or his minions to occupy even the tiniest portion of my mind...not today.

Because it is Memorial Day I decided to look up the Gettysburg Address. Why you ask? Because more Americans died fighting each other than in all other wars put together! So it occurred to me I might want to see what President Lincoln had to say when he attended the dedication of the Soldiers' National Cemetery at Gettysburg on Nov.19, 1863. Too bad Obama isn't going to Arlington National Cemetery like previous Presidents. There was another politician who spoke before Lincoln for over two hours - Lincoln's address took 2 minutes. I bet you don't even know who the other dude was - even I had to look it up! I find Lincoln's Address to be profound and very moving on this Memorial Day. You should do yourself a favor and read those 10 sentences call the Gettysburg Address.

What I do plan to do is watch some British mystery series and maybe even a movie. It's a nice sunny day here in Vero but I plan to stay at home. My housecleaning folks may bring a computer by for me to try to salvage and I think the Barnes boys may drop in for a visit but I'm not sure they will have time. Starr brought me some Bar-B-Q ribs with rice and garlic bread this weekend so now I'm set with a typical holiday cook-out meal. I love my personal meals-on-wheels program.

There's a young man whom I'm trying to help in my coffee group - he asked if I would. We visited for a couple hours on Friday and I have to say, I'm not sure he needs my help. Of course everyone needs my wisdom but my point is I'm not sure he rises about others. Of course I'm most please to make myself available even in the midst of my exceedingly busy schedule. It will take a few more conversations over coffee before I can better understand how I can best help him. This is not a chore for me - I'm actually enjoying what I'm doing.

Posted at 10:43 am in General | Comments (0)

Obama Sickens Me

Wed 26 May 2010

I've been trying to avoid letting the blight on American known as the Obama regime get my worked up - I've already permitted myself to get distressed too much already. It sickens me to see Obama and his willing progressive partners in Congress do what they are doing to this country. They have placed America on a road to economic collapse while socializing our country! I'm very resentful and angry at the powers in Washington.

It seems to me Obama doesn't give a rat's ass about anything except promoting his own socialist agenda. He is in constant campaign mode while ignoring the everyday responsibility of the President. What do I mean you ask? Well a few weeks ago Nashville had the worst flooding on record where hundreds of lives were lost and over $500 billion in property damage. Did Obama go there? No! Did he give it any air time? No! He completely ignored it and the media ignored him ignoring it.

Then here comes the oil spill in the Gulf - Obama hasn't been there either even though it started about 40 days ago. From what I can see, Obama's administration has done very little to help and they have blocked Louisiana from helping it's self because of some damn environmental studies required. What about the environmental affect of the damn spill?! The only thing Obama has done is point his corrupt finger at BP promising to make them pay.

Then there's this Arizona law which Obama, his attorney general, and his head of homeland security have all denounced but when asked, they all confessed they hadn't even read the law. Does anyone but me see a problem with US Attorney General Eric Holder saying he may sue Arizona over a law he hasn't bothered to even read? These people have been on TV news shows saying things about the law which are indeed factually wrong! The people advising Obama are incompetent and liars - these are not good people.

Did you know Obama has played more golf since he's been in office than either Bush or Clinton did in their 8 years in office? Did you know Obama hasn't had a press conference since July of last year?! When he's asked questions here or there he ignores them because he blows it without a script to read. Obama's handlers know that he does very poorly when asked questions to which the answer has not already been made by a staffer.

Yesterday I mentioned the newest problem with Obama's White House - the issue about what was offered to Congressman Sestak not to run for the Senate. Much to my surprise, even the Obama-loving media has tried to get answers - the White House has simply said something to the affect "we've looked into it and nothing is wrong". What?!! They checked themselves and they're OK! From what I've read and heard, this could very quickly become Sestak-gate!

Obama nauseates me. He is damaging the country at levels that may be beyond repair. He is a self-centered, thin-skinned elitist and the most incompetent man to ever be elected President.

Posted at 09:08 am in General | Comments (0)

Deep Do-Do?

Tue 25 May 2010

Some of you have been complaining about my absents for the past few days - I know how tough your day must be without my sage comments. What can I say? Actually I've not been all that tied up on computers I've just been doing other things.

My newest computer seems to be working fine now days - Dell did the right thing by replacing the all those parts. I still have to unplug my external hard drive upon a reboot because the Microsoft engineers programmed Windows 7 to look first for external media when booting. On the XP machines, you could tell them where to look for booting sequence info. This is no big deal just a nuisance which is not necessary.

John seems to be MIA - I've e-mailed him and called him but he's no where to be found. I bet he was taken hostage by some beautiful babe who wants to have her way with him. John is tough - he'll survive the abuse. Needless to say, he's still up at FSU working but not going to school - at least that's the story his mother and I get. He's 22 for God's sake ....who would know what he's doing. I just hope it's not illegal or harmful.

I'm through episode 8 of season 3 of 24. Jeez there's a lot of twists, turns, misdirection, etc. which keeps me guessing. This season seems to more turns and surprises than the last two seasons. I've been watching one episode per day or every other day - that seems to be a good pattern for me. I think I'll take in a movie later today.

Sunday I went to the beach for a hour and while growing skin cancer on my hot body, I heard someone call out. It was TB - he spotted my car parked over on the beach as he was riding his bike around. Nothing much new except Bridge and her mom went to some camp thing so Tommy is without company except for that little dog. He tells me they may not have time to come down to the Keys with the camps and other summer activities. When I was a teenager, my only activity was beach duty pretty much every day. Oh - there was that summer I learned how to fly then got my pilot's license but beyond that I didn't do a whole lot.

Have you heard the latest about the Obama regime ? It seems there may be some rather serious trouble on the horizon for them. It seems the Obama staff offered to give a job to Pennsylvania's newly elected Democrat Senator if he agreed not to run against Senator Specter in the Democrat primary. Well this guy Sestak beat Spector in the primary and will go on to face a Republican in this Fall's elections. The thing is, what the White House did is against the law. It is so much against the law that it's an impeachable offense! For his part, Sestak is not talking even though he's done nothing wrong. However, he refuses to give up the name and details of this attempted buy-off. If this was a Republican Administration the media would be all over this like white on rice. But the media continues to be in a lovefest with Obama who by any reasonable assessment is the most unexperienced and ill-prepared man ever elected to be POUS. If you know someone one else who should have that title, let me know.

Where this is going I do not know. What I do know is FOX News is on it and FOX News has a huge audience. If this is as bad as it appears to be, I think this may very well be a major crises for Obama. You see, if Sestak was offered a cabinet level job, Obama must have known about it - there is no plausible denial. This may be nothing but then again a minor break-in of an apartment in 1972 brought down a President. Can you say Watergate?

Posted at 09:08 am in General | Comments (0)

More Privacy Issues

Thu 20 May 2010

It was just yesterday I talked about privacy on the internet including Facebook and today my favorite newsletter - Windows Secrets - was all about Facebook. I get the paid version of Windows Secrets but I think this was in the free part of the letter. Have a look at what they said - click here. I'm even more concerned about what we don't know.

I order stuff from Amazon thus I get a regular mailing prompting this or that product. Of recent, I've noticed some of those mailings were directed to me because they included items I may have previously reviewed on Amazon. Often I look for computer related items or movies which I might want to see. What this means is Amazon has the ability to collect data from me without even being logged on and then they send me e-mails. The only way I know this can be done is by associating my IP with my e-mail address. If I were logged in that's one thing but using my IP to connect it with my e-mail address? Jeez!

To make things worse, I don't believe you can really get around that practice. Even if you force an IP change, they will record your new IP the next time you order from Amazon and then store the e-mail address associated with the IP. This is not harming me as such but it sure as hell is a practice which gives me a feeling of invasion. Of course my bank nows my IP because when I want to log in from a different IP -the Keys IP for example - I need to answer more than the normal logon questions. This I like for security but just demonstrates what on-line companies know.

Early this morning my doorbell rang and woke me up - it was 3 AM. I went to the door to find someone I once knew from my coffee group. He said he wanted to borrow some money to get out of a jam knowing I said I would not lend him money again after the last time he asked. It is my 100% belief he lied about what he needed the funds - it was not to get out of a jam but rather to purchase drugs after all, it was 3 AM. He repeatedly asked to which I repeatedly said no. First I don't believe I would be doing him a favor by making another loan based on what I thought he wanted to use the money - BTW he's not paid the first two loans yet. Secondly if I did, then I'd show him when I said no before I didn't mean it - I'm positive he would return again. I don't wish him ill but I don't want to support his problem.

Tell me...why do I need the volume up when I'm watch a subtitled movie on TV. On the IFC, you can find foreign movies subtitled in English but if I turn the volume don't I don't get the full affect thus I must leave the volume at normal levels. Interesting, huh?

Posted at 01:15 pm in General | Comments (0)


Wed 19 May 2010

Just yesterday I was talking about privacy issues on the internet - today I found two articles concerning that very issue. Inn fact, the Google issue made the front page of my Wall Street Journal while the Facebook issue I found by reading the Druge Report. If you don't reed the Druge Report everyday, you miss a lot of good stuff - it's fee on line at drugereport.com. All the people in the know read this daily report which by the way is continually being updated through the day - it's a must for me.

As to Google, their first main problem is the Europeans who were the first to discover Google's practice. Google admitted:

Google acknowledged the privacy breach in an apology issued last Friday, saying it had been inadvertently storing fragments of people's online activities over the past four years while expanding its mapping feature, "Street View."
Do you really believe Google, "inadvertently storing fragments of people's online activities"? How can you not know you're getting and storing the data? I think this is a boldfaced lie in attempt to cover-up their heinous acts. Reminds me of the Connecticut Attorney General and Democratic candidate for US Senate Richard Blumenthal totally unsuccessful attempt to make voters believe he "misspoke" when he said he served in Vietnam! Believe me, people in the armed services of the United States damn sure know where they served. Blumenthal is a liar - he didn't misspeak, he wanted to make people think he was a Vietnam vet to pad his resume. He sickens me! BTW, I did not serve in Vietnam either but I've not lied to people by saying I did. Blumenthal is just another left wing liberal who will say anything and do anything to get elected - I hope the good people of Connecticut don't fall for his crap. If you lie about severing in a war, what else will you lie about?

Now comes Facebook. They have made your name, profile picture, gender, current city, networks, Friends List, and all the pages you subscribe to are now publicly available information on Facebook. Is that what you expect? They made the change sort of over night requiring you to block anything you don't want available on the world wide web. This whole issue and the backlash it has caused is in the WSJ today.

Today's image is Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg

Posted at 09:48 am in General | Comments (0)

Edge of Darkness

Tue 18 May 2010

Wanting to kick back and watch a good movie I went on the search for something with mystery and surprises. I like government cover-up type movies where you're really not sure who the good guys are from the bad. I downloaded "Edge of darkness" with Mel Gibson - I was not disappointed. This is a good movie from my point of view and I'm glad it's part of my growing video collection. You may find this a bit difficult to believe but I now have over 500GB of videos on two external hard drives. Yes, I said it correctly...500GB!

I've been able to find just about any movie or TV series I want - the internet is an amazing place. One needs to be very careful about downloading files from other computers. I try to limit my sources to known safe sites and people with a good reputation as been honest - too often you can download a virus this way. To my surprise, some how I'm able to find movies which have not even been released on DVD yet - I'm talking about current movies in the theaters now. Cool.

Remember a few posts ago I talked about the privacy issue on the internet? Well today I found out yet another disturbing practice which I think is not only shameful but illegal as well. You know about Google maps and the street level pictures which often come with maps, right? Well it seems Google is collecting more data than they should. It was revealed that Google's Street View cars were collecting more than images and coordinates for its sophisticated GPS site. As much as 600GB of data from Wi-Fi networks -- in more than 30 countries -- has been snagged in Google's fishnet.

Google reports that it did not use the data and didn't know until recently that the "payload" data was being captured.

Google did know that its Street View cars captured the SSID and MAC address of secure wireless networks and maintains that none of the captured data was used in any Google projects. Google stated previously that it has grounded the Street View fleet until the error allowing the capture of data was fixed and it had initiated a third party investigation of the issue.
Be careful boys and girls you never know who is listening!

Posted at 05:38 pm in General | Comments (0)

Lease Signed

Mon 17 May 2010

Finally I received our lease for Villa 412 at The Palms - it only took 2+ months. Actually it has not been an issue because we all know the only renters there during the annual Islamorada trip is "our" group. Even when I was talking to Donna, she confirmed get an apartment during July is easy. I've signed the lease and then sent it by FAX back to Donna - the full payment with deposit will be due in a couple weeks.

It seems Donna is going to be able to accommodate the Brennan boys and their significant others. I wonder if Ryan will bring James or put him in storage for the 10 day stay. If he does bring James, I'd like to be around when he's particularly unhappy about something - I need to learn how to get more attention when I'm unhappy.

You folks know I've downloaded and saved movies & TV series to an external hard drive. This system works great for me because I have a desk top attached to my big screen TV. However, most folks I know don't have a spare TV or might not even know how to do it. The major requirement is you must have a TV usable as a monitor - most newer TV sets have such an option. I wanted to let Starr see a movie I have but she doesn't have a TV which can be used as a monitor. So....I burned my first .AVI file to a DVD this morning so she can view it with her DVD player. To my pleasant surprise, this was a simple project at least it was on my first try. I didn't even need to get a DVD burner - Windows 7 comes with a basic burner. Cool.

I've started season 3 of "24" - I think I'll only watch one episode per day. No one is safe from getting killed in this series with the exception of Jack Bower. Some of the regulars have already been bumped off in the first 3 episode - some I thought would always be in the series. One thing for sure...the life expectancy for Jack's CTU is very short in this TV thriller. It does keep me interested.

Have any of you ever seen "Foley's War"? It is a great British series which I've come to like as much as Midsomer Murders. The lead character is cool, quite, and really smart. I've downloaded several episodes but last night one newer episode was on public television's "Mystery Theater" which runs on Sunday night at 9 PM. Many of my favorites come from the Mystery Theater series in PBS.

Posted at 12:59 pm in General | Comments (0)

Odds & Ins

Thu 13 May 2010

Yesterday I got a computer call saying the Dell technician would not be able to come but will call as soon as he can. Frankly, I just expected to set up a time yesterday - maybe I'll get a call today. The good news is my machine is working now and I've discovered it might continue to work unless I try to reboot or install something. This has happened before - the machine works until and unless you try to do something. I've got some Microsoft updates I'm not going to install until the tech gets here so I'll be able to demonstrate the problem. I'm also going to request the guy install my two USB adapter cards to confirm the problem is fixed.

Donna called about my lease for the Keys - I'm going for the whole month of July. She was to FAX the lease to me on Tuesday morning but as of this morning there's no lease - why am I not surprised? John is most anxious to take his vacation from school and work but most of all he just wants to be in my presences - you folks understand of course. I also got an e-mail from GT Jeff who plans to come the week before lobster season - he and Amy want a more relaxing time without the crowds of lobster week.

Walt my landscape guy had his crew clean out the front area on the west side of my driveway and then install some new plants. I took a picture recently of the "before" look so as I can compare the "after" look. Today he's going to install the additional sprinklers and soon some fresh new mulch as ground cover. It's looking better but not quite there yet. The new plants are small but I know they'll grow quickly with my watering and food.

My bathroom sink got clogged - it would barely drain. I put a bottle of Drano into the sink - no luck. It looked like I needed a $95/hour plumber but I wasn't ready to give in yet. While at Wally World getting a prescription filled, I discovered a device which I could stick down into the drain then pull it out - the device was $6 so of course I wanted to give it a go. Looks like I just saved $89 because it worked great. I'm just wondering what clogged it in the first place - certainly it wasn't hair because I don't have any!

Vero's beaches have some hot babes on them.

Posted at 09:40 am in General | Comments (0)


Fri 07 May 2010

My landscape guy brought his newest computer over so I could un-install a version of Quickbooks and then put the newest 2010 version on his machine. The problem was he dropped it as he was getting it out of his SUV and when connected, the computer would start but the monitor would not come on - it wasn't at all obvious to me what I should try to fix it. He took it to a repair shop so they can charge him $65 just to find the problem. In the meantime I installed Quickbooks on his older machine so he can do his payroll, etc.

While Walt was here we talked about the area of my property which has cherry bushes I want taken out and replaced with "tropical" plants. It's that area the City required me to cut the bush to a height of no more than 36" - I did cut them earlier this year but I just don't like the look. Soon Walt will have his guys pull all the bushes out then install some landscape style grass and a couple other type plants. When done, it's my hope the landscaping will look consistent in nature and more attractive. I'll not have to worry about keeping the hedge trimmed anymore.

Walt told me people still compliment on the work he did for me - I wonder if he tells them I'm the one who designed the look? We talked about the new LED landscape lights so I decided to look into them - the wiring and transformer are already in place so all I'd need to do is replace the bulbs or fixtures with bulbs in them already. This would reduce my power consumption for the lights by 85% and the lights should last 10 times as long - 40,000 hours compared to 4,000 hours. You folks remember my lights burning out a lot last year before I switched to GE bulbs. The trouble with my plan is landscape LED lights are new and thus very pricey - each bulb would cost $70 or more meaning it would cost me $1300+ to replace them all. If I got new fixtures with the lights built in, they would cost $130 each meaning I'd spend $2400 to replace them.

I'd love to use LED lights but I'm not willing to spend the money at least at this point. The cost will come down in the future and I currently have two boxes of replacement bulbs (12 in a box). By the time I run through these bulbs, the price for LED lights should come down. In the meantime, my electrician suggested I buy just one LED light to give it a go - I might just do that. The electrician said he heard of issues with LED lights out in the weather all the time - I searched forums but couldn't find anything. This is a project I'll not pursue for awhile.

Yesterday I talked with Dell technical support about the problems I have rebooting when I've got peripherals plugged into USB ports. The guy took control of my computer - as I do with TeamViewer - but he didn't find anything obvious so he updated my BIOS. I've never updated my BIOS on any machine because I've read you should leave it alone unless there's a problem. Upon reboot, the machine worked as it should but when I rebooted this morning I got a problem with my screen resolution - there's still a problem. I'm going to do some testing before the Dell guy calls me back on Monday. I should not have this problem with my USB ports.

Posted at 09:12 am in General | Comments (0)


Wed 05 May 2010

When I was watching the news at o-darkhundred this morning, the news reader said a Picasso sold for over $106,000,000 ! Jeez! Over a hundred million dollars for one single painting? If I had the resources, I don't think I'd pay so much for a painting. I could see paying one or two million if I had huge resources but not any more than that. But, I guess this sort of thing makes the world go round, huh? BTW, I never did understand why the Picasso's are so valuable - his art is weird to say the least.

In the mornings both FOX & Friends and Don Imus play bumper music as they trail out for commercials. For the most part, I like the music they play. The other morning I heard the "San Francisco with flowers in your hair" song and thought how my generation still enjoys old as well as new music. It's my opinion parents of baby boomers didn't like more modern music and didn't even list to old music much either. I've never stopped liking new music although I really dislike rap noise - some of you already know that. Plus I'm happy to listen to music at moderate volumes which means I am getting older but I've still got some MoJo left.

I've been watching season #2 of "24" - I like it much better than season #1 thus far - I'm have way through. Usually I only watch 2 episodes at a time just to keep that eager to see the next episode. In season #2, Jacks daughter is still a dumb blonde doing exactly what she shouldn't do causing a whole heck of a lot of trouble. She needs a good "come to Jesus" talk. The second season has had a lot of surprises although I'm only half way through it. For the first time, not all the good guys get killed. I'll likely watch a couple more later today.

Remember me telling you about how surprised and happy I was to get into a membership only torrent site specializing in everything British? They have rules which require users to upload so as to maintain a upload to download value greater than 1. Most torrent sites you'll see say 200 downloading while only 10 or 20 are uploading thus sometimes taking a few days of stead download to get a file. At "TheBox.bz" you'll find 100 people uploading and only 3 or 4 downloading meaning I can get files in a mater of minutes. Now here's the hook I've found - you need to upload to keep go ratios but if there's no one wanting to download, you're stuck. I have 4 torrent files I've made available for upload but no one wants them. I've discovered the key is to download a really new file which others want and thus you can upload. The thing I really like is the availability of rapid downloads of everything British but you really need to upload too which is why there are so many downloads available. Did this make any sense at all?

I think I'll go relax away from my computer for awhile. I've been having new problems with a web cam and it's compatibility with Windows 7 64 bit OS.

Posted at 01:37 pm in General | Comments (0)

Intrusive Internet

Mon 03 May 2010

Later yesterday I found a replay of the OAR concert in Madison Square Gardens on the Palladia network - this time I watched the whole concert. I like this band's music - music which has words I can actually understand. Music that has words that actually make some sense. Music that has words which tell a story. So many bands now just are loud and very had to understand if at all. If you do understand, the words are a bunch of gobbledygook (that's a real word by the way). I'd watch this band again but I want to add even thought I thought they were great, they could even come close to the performance capabilities of the extremely talented Michael Jackson. That's not a put down on OAR - I think OAR is in the group of great bands like The Beatles, Dave Mathews, Elton John, John Mayer, Jack Jackson, Matchbox Twenty, Neil Diamond, and on and on. I had to throw in Neil Diamond, Elton John, and the Beatles for us old farts.

You know what I've been thinking about lately? There is a whole heck of a lot of info about me and you out there on the internet. Some of that I'm good with because I've put it there with the intent of being found. My name is on BillsView.com and TanzaniteAmerica.com so there's no surprise there. What is a bit of a surprise is how other sites handle my info and others. For example, I received happy birthday greetings from many of my Facebook friends - I guess I should not be surprised. I also got greetings from other sites to which I belong and some of those were unexpected. Sites where I offer technical support or simple need to join to access data.

Did you know Google Buzz integrates with your Gmail account (and other Google services) and turns it into a social experience? A "buzz" is a threaded conversation (with pictures and video and blog links and more) and you can either post publicly (which shows up on your main Google profile) or selectively choose who in your friends list sees your buzz. Surprised?

A security research company - Computer Associates - is sounding the alarm that Facebook's controversial Beacon online ad system goes much further than anyone has imagined in tracking people's Web activities outside the popular social networking site. Beacon will report back to Facebook on members' activities on third-party sites that participate in Beacon even if the users are logged off from Facebook and have declined having their activities broadcast to their Facebook friends. Did you sign up for that? I didn't!!

It seems many sites we use like Gmail, Live.com, Facebook, Twitter, etc. all tell other people more about me than I want them to. Recently Facebook wanted me to join groups I hand no interest in joining like Georgia Tech or VBHS alumni groups. Facebook has this new "Connect with your friends on your favorite websites" which means they somehow know what sites their members might be on if they click an "I like" icon or something like that.

What is really really daunting is the way Google keeps track of the sites you "google" and then visit to get news, buy something, or research data. I read in the Wall Street Journal Google wants to watch the type of things you read then provide similar things on your searches. I don't know about you but I want to choose those things I read as a result of a search without being filtered by Al Gore and his cronies. Oh, you didn't know - Al Gore is a large shareholder and sits on the Board of Directors at Google. But then again, I wouldn't want George Bush filtering my news either. The mainstream media already filters way too much for my liking.

The solution of course is to take all your info off the net where you can and then use a proxy to surf the web.

Posted at 02:30 pm in General | Comments (0)

Nice Day

Sun 02 May 2010

Today has been one of thse cloudless days with a nice breeze - good for both the tourists and regulars. It is rather warm -85 now. It seems that when May came on Saturday, so did Summer! Are we done with the pleasant mild temperatures and now into the heat of Summer? It was such a nice day I thought about the beach except the radio shows I listen to while at the beach are not on during the weekends. Maybe I'll give it a go if it's nice tomorrow.

After a few days of driving on my shinny new tires which cost too much, I've noticed a smoother ride and better car handling. I got new tires because I thought it was prudent but it's nice to notice an improvement. Now John can drive me to and from the Keys at those high speeds he likes to drive and I'll worry less - oh, I'll still worry but just less. The amount of driving I do probably means I'll not buy tires for this car again.

Has anyone noticed when old farts come to a place where they want to turn right the stop and the turn? This is dangerous - if they are going to turn they should do so without stopping first. I'm talking about turning into a parking lot, driveway, or even onto another road. Just turn for God's sake!! Get out of the road without stopping causing those behind them to stop as well. I didn't notice this much in Atlanta but here in Vero where the average driver is 78, it happens all the time. I'm just newly an old fart but when I get older, tell me not to act like that which for me should not be much of a problem because I already prefer to be driven rather than drive myself.

I've not leased an apartment for the Keys yet although I contacted Donna about a month ago - I guess it's time to follow up. I thought about moving to a different unit but I do like being on the 4th floor close to the front of the building. Besides, the apartment has tile meaning it's easy to sweep up Sally Cat fur. I'm just thinking that unit needs paint and a good cleaning of all the crap which occupies the kitchen cabinets. There must be 100 coffee cups, 20 frying pans, just to mention a few. Everyone who's every stayed there has left something behind it seems. Well heck, I don't know that it is still available except I think it will be unless the owner sold the unit. I need a new mattress in the master bedroom too. I'd better call Donna.

A week from tomorrow I go back to the neurologist for my follow-up. I need some prescriptions for minor, major, and critical headaches. I get all three and use different Meds on different levels. I wish I didn't need anything at all. Oh well, at least there are solutions for my issues - I ought not complain.

Posted at 04:06 pm in General | Comments (0)

Terrible Monday

Tue 27 April 2010

Jesh...yesterday was a bad day for me - no energy and headaches at the same time. It could have been caused at least in part by the lousy, cloudy, rainy day. There's scientific proof changes in atmosphere pressure can cause headaches - these pressure changes come with weather changes. So I attribute some of the way I felt to the day itself. On the other hand is a bright sunny day and like the day, I feel brighter. I hope it lasts.

While staying in yesterday I watched the last two episodes of 24 - I didn't see that ending coming. As I stated earlier, Jack's daughter is a real dumb-ass and his wife is a nagging worry all the time person. This job he has as a Fed is his life - I can't imagine him keeping his job if his wife was such a worrier and his daughter so dumb. I will not tell you how it ends in case you've not seen the end as yet. Now I wonder what season 2 will be like - does it take up after season 1? I'll find out soon - I've got the first 6 seasons on an external hard drive.

It amazes me how much data I've collected over the years requiring storage. Part of the data is just redundancy of the hard drives on computers 1, 2, 3, and 4. Knowing computers do crash, I've decided a long time ago to store things externally. I've got a new 4 port USB adapter card to put into my new computer with the thought of attaching 3 external hard drives to it. This way I can access old data from older computers all in one place.

My computer crashed over night on Sunday - the storms came in which caused power outages. When my computer tried to reboot after the outage, it failed then went into repair mode. When asked if I wanted to do yet another system restore I said no but when I then tried to reboot nothing happened. I mean nothing ever appeared on my monitor - net even a BSOD or DOS alert. Nothing! Fortunately I've learned what to do when that happens after reading computer help forums over the years. The question is what have I done in the last 24 hours and the answer was I installed a 4 port USB 2.0 adapter and a 2 port USB 3.0 adapter (see image). I took both cards out of my computer which in turn allowed it to boot normally. The machine didn't like the drivers for the USB 3.0 card in the first place so I'm almost positive that was the problem. Soon I'll put the USB 2.0 card back in because it didn't need any software to work - the adapter software was already installed from the factory as was my printer and webcam software.

I've been in touch with the engineer with Microsoft about my installation problems which have continued. The next time I get updates, I'll try to install them normally and if that does not work, he wants me to remove all but about 2GB of memory to try again. What the heck does memory have to do with it I ask. He says others have had similar problems which were correct after the memory sticks were moved around. I don't get it but I know how to do what he asks so I'll give it a go. Although this issue is annoying I sort of still like the challenge of finding a solution.

Is today a beach day for me? It could be because it's so sun although there is some wind and the temperatures are still cool after that front moved through.

Posted at 09:34 am in General | Comments (0)

Torrent Sites

Fri 23 April 2010

So what have you been up to you ask? My days continue to be filled and at the end of each day I wonder where the hours went. There's not been anything particularly unusual this week but here it is Friday already. I used to not like weekends because among other things my regular 'scheduled' day is different - no Rush in the afternoon for example. But now I've discovered things I like to do or watch on the weekend so I now like weekends. Of course when I was working, I usually loved weekends.

Since I downloaded the first full season of "24" last week, I've been watch about two episodes per day - more than two just doesn't seem as much fun as waiting until another day. I'm up to about 5 PM on the first day and I now have a greater understanding of the series. First, I still like the series which is not always the case on other series. It is painfully obvious to me that Jack's daughter is a real dumb ass! She continues to do really stupid things putting her mother and father into more danger. Also it seems that about 50% of Jack's department are already dead - they seem to get knocked-off at an alarming rate. They too seem to act rather stupidly given the fact they know people are out to kill them. I'll watch some more today and this weekend.

My new "thing" is to download an ever increasing library of TV series I like or series I think I might like. For example, today I've started downloading "24" season 7 - I've already got 1-6 on an external hard drive. The 24 series is the only 'American' series I've been downloading - the others come from the BBC. The British mysteries are just great IMO. The trouble is most files I want to download take 24 to 48 hours to complete - it's not my internet speed as much as it is the availability of the files I want and how many other people want the same files at the same time. Torrents are just different than regular downloads.

There is one site which only has British TV & movies but u8nfortunately it is "closed" to new members and new members need to be invited by present members - they have a limit of 100,000 total members. I wanted to join this site because they have everything British I want with quick downloads but alas I was not a member nor did I know anyone who could invite me. Then shazam...the site temporarily opened when they did their annual "pruning" meaning they dropped inactive accounts. I was at the right place at the right time which permitted me to join in this small window of time. I'm a very happy camper but there is work to do.

The site has a whole slew of rules and regulations you must follow to stay a member. The biggest rule is you have to maintain a certain upload ratio based on your downloads - in other words, you can't take a download and run without unloading at the same time. Frankly, I do this anyway because I appreciate the people who made my downloads possible. The trouble with this site however is because their membership is so limited, there may not be a request for the files I have thus even though I want to upload, there are no requests. I download season 4 of A Touch of Frost about 36 hours ago and no one has unloaded from me - this yields a piss poor ratio of 0! Hopefully someone will want the files I have in the next 28 days or I'm banned. Also, I'm now limited as to about one other download before I'm blocked. Jeez! This is a great site but hard to confirm with the rules even though I want to do so.

This week I installed a video cam and the Skype program for Lina - now she can video conference with her friends and relatives on Skype. I just got a new cam myself - my old one didn't like Windows 7 - but I've not installed Skype yet. Or should I say I've not reinstalled Skype after it got lost in a system restore last weekend when I was working on my Windows update issue. Perhaps I'll install it today.

TB came by this week to scheme with me about getting all his 'stuff' to Islamorada. We're talking about the red truck, scuba tanks, his grill, etc. There would not be a problem except he's not got any drivers to help. His sons will be in the Bahamas and I've got John to drive me. What to do? I think I've figured it out but as yet I've not told Tommy - no worries, we'll get it done.

Posted at 09:58 am in General | Comments (0)

Microsoft Fix

Mon 19 April 2010

This past weekend was darn dreary here in Vero - I hope this week is better. We had two sunless day with drizzle rain on Sunday. I didn't use my car this weekend although I did go outside. On Saturday the annual Hibiscus Festival was held just a block from my house in the park and on the old downtown streets. If I did not go outside or look outside I never would have known it - my house is really well insulated from the elements and sound. I did have some people who thought they needed to park a bit out of the street and on my lawn. It doesn't look like they broke any sprinkler heads.

Last week I got an update notice from Microsoft - it was the usual notice we all get. Unfortunately when I installed the updates, my computer would no longer completely boot - not a good thing. So, I shut down my machine, did a system restore and tried again - same failure. I research the error codes I found in my event viewer but was unsuccessful in resolving my problem. Imagine me not being able to fix the problem without trying a re-install of the operating system so for the first time I contacted Microsoft support. I could not have been more pleased with their response.

First I got an e-mail saying I would be contacted in 24 hours - I was. They gave me instructions I could follow but someone with less understand about the operating system would have a hard time IMO. The solution failed on both of my attempts. So I report back to Microsoft then I got a call from India - very polite guy but sometimes a bit hard to understand. We worked on it for about a hour but still no go. Then I got an e-mail saying:

"I am sorry to know that the issue has not been resolved yet. Please do not worry; the issue that you have is a unique issue. To ensure that the proper solution is found, I am forwarding this case to the Research Team and they will call you within the next 24 hours to work with you on this issue."
Apparently I stumped them so I actually was talking with an engineer at Microsoft - they were afraid I might be the first of a series of problems so they wanted to fix it in case others contacted them. Well, we did fix it although there's no clear expiation as to why it happened in the first place or if it might happen again. Stay tuned - they are going to keep my "case" open for 3 weeks as other updates come in.

Talked to Syp on Saturday to wish him a happy birthday. He's doing great and as I was speaking to him getting ready to go out to dinner with Sjak. All is well in Dutchie land although it's still rather cool over there. Hmm...must be global warming!

I've now watched the first 10 hours of the first series of 24. I've decided that from here on I'll not watch more than 2 hours at a time. The program is good - lots of people have already been killed in the first 10 hours. Plenty of twists and turns - I like that. Thus far I've already downloaded the first 4 seasons and will download more - it takes about 36 hours or more per download.

Posted at 10:45 am in General | Comments (0)

Happy Birthday Syp

Fri 16 April 2010

TGIF, huh? For you folks who are working today, I bet you're glad it's Friday. Back a long time ago in a galaxy far far way when I was working, Fridays were always good days for me especially Fridays in the Fall when there was a college game to attend the next day. Now days are all about the same with the exception of the weekends when the TV programming changes. This weekend I'll likely watch a movie or two and perhaps a few episodes of "24" - I like the 24 thus far with having watched 3 episodes.

Yesterday I watched the balance of the BBC series called "The State Within" - it was darn good in IMO. There were twists and turns all through the 6 part series and you never quite knew who the good guys were until the end. Of course a lot of people got knocked off but that is to be expected. It was so intense at times I think I'll watch it again to see what I missed the first time. I have the 4.09 GB file saved on my computer if any of you want it. The torrent took me hours to download but now that I have it all, it should not take much time for me to upload it so you can download it - I'll probably zip it first.

Thus far I have the first 3 seasons of 24 - each season takes about 24 to 36 hours to download - I leave my machine on over night every night. The downloads also slow my internet way down because I often have as many as 60 to 80 commuters either sending file pieces to me or taking file pieces from me - the download speeds are slow but all those connections suck up my bandwidth. Right now I started the BBC series "State of Play" which all the reviews I,ve read say it's better than the movie State of Play with Russell Crowe - I really liked the movie. It seems I've turned into a movie/series download junkie but no one should be surprised - I'm addicted to more! More of this, that, or the other thing as long as it is more. Jeez am I whacked or what?

Yesterday I chatted with John about the Keys this Summer - he's more excited than he has ever been so of course I wanted to know why. He gave me two good answers - first he has been working more and studying more than any time in the past. The second reason is living in Talahassee has been the first time in his life he did not have access to the ocean. All of his life he could be at the beach in about 10 minutes but not now. He wants the ocean back again which I think is the big deal for him. In fact he might to stay even longer than in the past - time will tell.

Since I put the picture of "James" up a couple days ago, I've been getting lots of comments. People think it's fun which of course is why I made it in the first place. too bade I didn't have more images of Ryan from which to select a head shot because I think I could have done a better job. Using an image editor is fun for me.

Tomorrow is Syp's birthday - he'll be 38 years old. 38!! - Jeez I remember when Wendy and I first met Syp in Northwest Kenya about a quarter of a century ago. Damn time flies (see image of a teenage Syp). From a cute little blonde somewhat out of control teenager to a maturing working adult with two sons, a mortgage, and responsibility. I'm very happy for and proud of Syp - he turned out to be a decent Dutch citizen in spite of knowing me! Happy Birthday Syp.

Posted at 09:52 am in General | Comments (0)

James Arrived

Wed 14 April 2010

Today I bring you grate news - Heather downloaded a new future taxpayer yesterday in the wee hours of the morning. His name is James Barnes Brennan - both mom and the baby are doing well according to my sources. This is very good news for the Barnes - Brennan clan and for old farts like me as well. You see, those of us who are on the dole (aka social security) need more fresh new taxpayers to fund are government payments. So those of you who are just practicing making babies had better stop practicing and get on with it! Ryan and Heather have set a good example for you to follow so start making more new future taxpayers.

Word has it that James looks a lot like his father - what do you think? (see picture) I believe he does resemble his dad even thought he's only a day old. Now answer a question for me...why do babies want to get downloaded at night when it's dark? James came into this world just after midnight. How often do you hear of a baby arriving in mid-day? Almost never I'd say. I'll need to ask Syp what time his two sons got hatched. Congratulations to Heather and Ryan.

Last evening I was watching Bill O'Reiley on the FOX news channel. He had some female psychologist on the show to talk about how much 'spring break' has gotten out of control for a lot of students. Frankly I'm not sure the spring break celebrants are any more wild than my generation but then I've not been to a spring break fest in about 40 years so things could have changed. One thing Bill said that really got my attention is when he was in college, his crowd went to Ft. Lauderdale just like my crowd. Then he said he spent hours in the bar called the Elbow Room. Jeez...do I ever remember the Elbow Room right on the main strip on the beach. This place was the center of action over 40 years ago and I've been told it's still open today. There are lots of stories I could tell but I'll save that for another time. I wonder if I met Bill back then? Who would know - we were all consuming large quantities of beer. It was a whole hell of a lot of fun.

My new computer5b had its first crash problem yesterday after I tried to install new updates from Microsoft. Upon rebooting, it just did not want to finish the boot process after 10 minutes or more - it was caught in some sort of endless loop. So, I powered it down then tried to boot again which gave me an error and options like "repair" so I did. The machine recovered but the updates still are needing to be installed - I'll try a bit later after my current downloading is completed.

I've decided to start watching the TV series "24" so I'm getting the video files right now. It took over a day to get season 1 downloaded and I'm about 15 hours into season 2. This series is one I think I would like but I've never watched a single episode. After starting with the British mini-series called The State Within recently, I thought 24 would be similar in nature. Of course I've heard a lot about 24 with all the reports being really good - I'll give it a go soon.

Tomorrow I got let the vampires at my doctor's office suck some blood out of my body. It's time for my annual physical and blood work needs to be done before I actually see my doctor a week from tomorrow. Other than being a bit whacked, I don't know of any other issues I have which are not being currently treated. Since my last physical I've added two doctors to my inventory - one psychiatrist and one neurologist. Does this mean I'm really screwed up in the brain? Well ya! I've got the migraine/headache issues plus the need for Wellbutrin & Adderall. Do you see a pattern here? All the Meds I take are for my head but then again I bet no one out there is surprised huh?

Posted at 10:37 am in General | Comments (0)

My Weekend

Sun 04 April 2010

Where to begin? There has been so much going on I think starting now and working backwards is about the only way I can remember. You see, my brain's processor needs more RAM after all these years of accumulating mostly esoteric and worthless information. Sometimes it takes me longer now to remember things because I've had to store some of my memory in zip files. Jeez! Am I into the computer lingo or what?

This Easter Sunday afternoon I watched two of my favorite British mysteries - they were great. There were a couple of unterruptions to offer emergency help on computers which of course I'm most happy to do. It's obvious those of us who did not grow up in the PC world are for the most part way behind those who did. The only reason I've learned some stuff is a direct result of being self-unemployed for these years after I joined the coffee group.

While watching the British Mysteries today I discovered something I thought to be true but never tested. It is true that if I download a movie or other video in high definition the file will play back in HD on my TV. If a file contains the HD data then any HD TV can read it. So this got me thinking about the computer hook-up I'm using. I'd bet the computer will render a Blue Ray HD DVD just like a good Blue Ray DVD player. Bingo...no need to buy a Blue Ray player if I thought I needed one. Of course I'll check this out but why would it not work?

This morning I worked on Walt's (landscape guy) old computer I fixed a few weeks ago with a new power supply. It would not completely boot again but this time I think it's something else - after all, he has a new power supply. After extensive research and go old process of elimination, I now think his current problem might be caused by a faulty off-on button. I first unplugged everything then plugged it back in - at first that seemed to fix it but the fix was short lived. After I use the good old universal stand-by repair method - I hit the on - off switch - it seems to be working OK now. After several reboots it has not failed but I think it will until and unless I replace it. More to follow.

Yesterday was a very long day for me starting at about 5:30 AM when I got up to go over to TB's riverside estate - we were going fishing. Matt, Drew, Ty, Tommy and I left his dock around 7:15 although the "scheduled" departure was 6:15 - why am I not surprised. It seemed the boys stayed up to the wee hours of the morning solving the World's problems. It was a very nice day but unexpectedly windy in the ocean - we had 3 - 4 feet seas most all morning although the afternoon it laid down. The trip out to the fishing grounds was rough as well as the first few hours of fishing with the rolling waves. Ugh! I got a bit sea sick but after it laid down, I was fine. Ty had the same problem. It turned out to be a great day although we didn't bring any fish onto the boat. Matt & Drew had wahoos on at the same time - Drew's got off and Matt had the fishing line come loose from the swivel. Then there also two small dolphins which also got off. We did spot 2 or 3 different sharks and I'm talking big sharks - maybe 10' or more. We got back to the docks with as many people as we left with that morning - that's a good thing.

After getting back to TB's dock around 6, I headed home to clean up in order to go to a concert with Starr at the Sunrise Theater in Fort Pierce. You're going to ask what the hell got into my mind when I said I would go - well, Starr asked so I'm pleased to go. Here's the surprise boys and girls - it was a Country - Western concert! Yep, a country - western concert with 3 'main' guys taking turns playing their songs. Two of the three sang just the type of country - western music I dislike the most - that twangy style most commonly associated with that kind of music. We both liked the third guy who sang more modern C-W music - unfortunately he only sang one out of three times.

Not only was the C-W music not to my liking, it was very LOUD too!! I don't do loud very well, especially loud I don't like. Then there was this constant whistling and hollering by the most intoxicated C-W fans. Jeez! I was out of place with a polo shirt and kaki pants - I needed a cowboy hat, jeans, and an obnoxious shirt. Oh, a nice BIG belt buckle would have been nice too. I'm glad I went with Starr - I would not have wanted her to suffer though that without me. We got up and left after we couldn't take anymore. If there was ever any doubt I don't like old time twangy whinny C-W music, let me confirm now - I don't like it.

Posted at 05:59 pm in General | Comments (0)

New Powerhouse Computer

Tue 23 March 2010

This will surprise some of you folks but since the the Obamacare training wreck was passed on Sunday I've not watched my usual news/political shows on TV. I'm tired of it for now so I'll give it a rest. Hmm... maybe one day of rest is enough? It did listen the master of everything political yesterday aka. Rush Limbaugh. My hope is the fat lady is not singing and there are still things which can be done even though the wretched liberal progressive self-center arrogant elitist democrats jammed the bill through against the will of us poor tax-paying Americans. Time will tell.

It's about time I uncover the little secret I've been keeping for about a month now. You know I've been talking about getting Windows 7 along with an un-needed new machine, right? You see it's my duty to know about Windows 7 to help those of you who have the operating system when you have a question or problem. So, about a month ago Dell was selling a couple of their computer lines at 30% of the usual high price for the type of computer I would buy. My hold back before now is I didn't needed a new computer - the ones I have (5 of them) are working just fine although some are better than others. But with this 30% discount I gave into my "wants" and ordered one.

My top machine now is still very good and ahead of it's time when I bought it 3 years ago. It's a Dell Inspiron with a 500GB hard drive, a 2.33 MHz Intel quad core processor, and RAM upgrade to the maximum of 4 GB. This is and has been one hell of a great computer - heck I'm using it now. But its operating system is XP and I've tuned it up has far as I can take it. What to do? Order a new machine of course!

The new computer I received only last Thursday is a top of the line Dell Studio XPS 9000 - look it up at Dell.com if you like. Here's the good stuff about it. The machine has an overly large hard drive of 1TB ...yes, one full TB which is 1000 GB! My first machine had a 40 GB hard drive and the one I'm using has a 500 GG which is half the size of the new one. The hard drive is not the big deal - the big deal is it's extreme power. I ordered the next to the fastest processor I could get - the fastest cost an additional $500 I didn't want or need to spend. It is the Intel quad core i7 2.66 GHz processor with Hyper-Threading yielding a "clock speed" of an amazing 3.2 GHz and "Turbo-boost" bring the speed up as high as a blazing 3.36 GHz. That may mean very little to most of you but the geeks out there will appreciate this processor. BTW, Dell more 'normal' computers use a Intel i3 or i5 processor.

Fast processors are good but they need RAM to really operate at the upper extremes of their capability. So, I included the new DDR 3 tri-channel SDRAM at 1066HGz- up until now, all computers used a DDR2 dual Chanel memory system. Oh, did I mention it has 12GBG of RAM and can hold 24GB of RAM? Jeez!! That's 3 times the RAM my other Dell could even hold! Of course it has Windows 7 and a 22" full high definition monitor.

Since Thursday I've been working on both the older computer and the new one - I've been installing my favorite programs which are compatible with a 64x Windows 7 OS. So you are asking if I can see the difference? Hell ya I can. On my Inspiron the Firefox browser takes about 30 seconds or even longer to load - the new machine loads Firefox in about 3 seconds! That's just one example - stay tuned for more comparisons as I discover them.

The icon I posted yesterday was that for Mozilla's Thunderbird e-mail client - my favorite e-mail client, Pegasus, will not work on a 64 bit machine yet. Thus far I like Thunderbird although I've not used it much as yet.

You can tell I'm a geek because I get excited about processor speed and RAM like most normal people get excited about a new car - computers are cheaper than cars by the way!

Posted at 06:14 am in General | Comments (0)

Monday Update

Mon 22 March 2010

Did any of you watch the start of season 3 for 'Breaking Bad' on the AMC network? It was on at 10 PM last night and to my amazement I was up to watch it. It was a bit dis-jointed but it did open several doors to the sub-plots. I though the first have was slow but then it picked up. Of course I'm hooked already on wanting to find out what is next.

The first part of last week including the weekend, I was working on helping an Atlanta firm with optimizing their site on the Internet as it relates to search engines. During the 3 or 4 days I probably spent 12 to 15 hours helping which ended on Tuesday when a complete outline of what I thought needed to be done was sent to them. I've already completed the important part and that is what to do. Apparently they don't want to pay me to do it but rather use someone in-house. That's ok with me because the project would then become a task and I don't like tasks. Still, I would expect to hear from them. What next I wonder?

The attorney who's site I built for him last year has not paid for this year's hosting and domain name fees which I paid for him. After asking for reimbursement since January, I had to do something so I took the site down. Why would you not want to speed $260 for a whole year knowing that you'd make that up if the site just brought in one client? Doesn't make sense to me. Oh, well!

I guess you know Georgia Tech won the ACC tournament then went to the national NCAA tournament. Tech lost in the second round to Ohio State which was not a big surprise to me. Too bad but nonetheless they had a great season. Now there is this long drought until September when football starts up again. Over 5 months. Jeez!

On Saturday I sent the 7.92 carat Tanzanite to my buyer in Houston - she should get it today. I think I'll hear from her again but I'm not sure when - she does have seven days to decide to keep it or send it back for a refund. For now I'm leaving her credit card payment in my friend's vendor account in case I need to return the funds. I expect to know sometime this week.

I still don't have my cousin's laptop fixed yet - I needed to order a recovery disk from Toshiba. All the things I tried failed - even the "reset to factory default" option would not work but rather end up in a continues loop of booting then rebooting. So, I wiped the disk clean with the intention of installing everything new again. The hardware is ok so this should work.

I've got more news but you'll have to tune in again. Do you know what this icon is for?

Posted at 10:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Bull Ants

Wed 17 March 2010

Since Monday, there's been a lot going on. Will I always be this busy? Jeez! I'll need a vacation to the keys this year more than most - besides, my dermatologist wants me to grow more skin cancer for him to zap.

Here's a strange story for you about some bull ants. When it rains a lot like it did last week, bull ants tend to seek higher ground and thus manage to get into my house. This only happens when there's several inches of rain. Well this past weekend and on Monday I noticed some bull ants in my office which didn't seem too strange because of the rain. But they remained around - when the ground dries out, they leave. I noticed some Sally Cat hair around the paper tray on my printer yesterday so I pulled the tray out to get the hair. You know what's coming next...there was a nest full of Bull ants, eggs, and some ants with wings. Hundreds of them. Of course I ran out the back door then proceeded to brush all the ants out. I was surprised to say the least. No ants there today.

Remember Jason? He resurfaced yesterday declaring he moved back to Vero to stay with his dad - his "girlfriend" and he parted ways. He's doing well except the same old issue is bugging him - no job. It would help if he looked for a job but maybe that's not his plan? I've got him doing some odds n' ends for me. Jobs are hard to come by and harder if you're not looking.

Yesterday I spent all morning doing my preliminary tax work so as I'll have my package ready to be sent to my account back in Atlanta when I get all the K-1 forms I need. Those forms usually do not appear until the very end of this month. Fortunately, my tax return is not anywhere near as complicated as it once was. The funky things now are the foreign taxes I pay, the limits for medical expenses, and these K-1 forms. Nevertheless, my return is still about 10 pages long.

Did you get your census form yesterday? I did. It took me about a minute to fill it out to be mailed back today. It was the 'normal' short form not the lengthy form asking a lot of invasive questions. It did ask my race to which I should have answered 'alien from the planet zentar'. I don't think the government union employees would like that but then again, I don't care.

I've got a busy day so I should go for now. More to follow soon.

Posted at 09:05 am in General | Comments (0)

My Weekend

Mon 15 March 2010

This has been a mixed weekend for me - mixed with movies, BBC episodes, computer hardware installation, and detailed research on SEO (search engine optimization). It was also a great, sunny weekend with mild temperatures and little wind for a change. The real bonus is I didn't have headache attacks - wish I can have more weekends like this one.

There were 2 1/2 movies I watched - one HBO, IFC, and from one of my downloads. The first I got into sort of by mistake but it got my attention so I watched the 2 hours and 40 minutes of "Australia" - it was an epic of a film and for my taste much better than Avatar. One of the reasons I liked it is because I was reminded of my visit to Australia - the people, their accents, and the beautiful country. Very enjoyable for me.

Then I watched a movie I downloaded called "Moon" - it was maybe ok but too boring for me. The plot was interesting but the ending really sucked IMHO. You never know what you'll think about a movie almost until the end - do you agree? At least it was better than the awful "District 9"!

Next was a foreign movie in French with English subtitles - I often like foreign movies. It too was too slow with little acting and almost no action. One thing I discovered about myself I thought is a bit odd - even if I don't understand the language I want the volume up as I read the subtitles. What is that wall about? I would not want to watch a subtitled movie with the sound low or off. Hmm....is there deeper meaning here?

My gigabyte network adapter arrived so I installed it into my main computer. Unfortunately an installation CD did not come with it so I went to the Intel site to download the drivers for this device. For some reason, I couldn't get the drivers to install properly - the error code said I needed an installation disk. Well I know a disk should not be necessary so what's up with that? I spent a couple hours trying to find a solution but as yet, I've not found one. So, I decided to order a new adapter with an installation disk - I have more than one computer which can use this new Intel network adapter. In the meantime, I may try uninstalling this driver then installing it all over again.

Starr was having computer problems on Saturday so I went out to see if I could fix the problem which was here screen was dark where it should be light or white. My first question was and always is "when did this start and what were you doing at the time". She couldn't remember anything. The problem was solved by going into the "Display" console to reset the monitor and screen saver - it turns out she had changed the screen saver the night before but didn't notice the problem until the following morning. No worries, it's fixed.

About half the weekend I was doing detailed research on SEO techniques - this is the most studying I've done on the subject. My purpose was to see if I can help these people in Atlanta that called for my help. At this point there is absolutely no doubt I can greatly improve their website with respect to SEO - the question is do I want the project? It will take a lot of time with no quick result - improving search engine rankings is a process, not a destination. The question becomes is how much will I need to charge to make it worth wild for me and are they willing to pay it. BTW, most SEO online operations charge a minimum of $500 per month every month. I'd charge a onetime fee then charge by the hour as needed in the future.

One of the things my research taught me is how to beat the system at least on a temporary bases. There are techniques called "black hat" techniques which are considered 'cheating' by many and if discovered by a search engine could lead to a sort of banning. I never knew about these methods some of which might be ok for a short period of time. What I did discover is the online companies guaranteeing a high Google ranking use these techniques without telling the client it is bad for them in the long run. I'm thinking about testing one of these methods on a site I built but only for a short period so as not to cause a long term problem. Your thoughts?

Picture was taken a week ago when John was in town. Am I shrinking or is John just getting bigger? How you like the short hair?

Posted at 08:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Spring Break

Fri 12 March 2010

It's a very rainy Friday here in Vero - it rained all afternoon yesterday and into the night. The forecast calls for rain today with clearing tomorrow which should last for 5 days. We need the rain so this is a good thing.

The bad thing about the rain is it makes going to the beach for the college Spring breakers a non-start. John called me last night from Key West where he and some friends are doing the Spring break thing. According to john the weather front has not made it to Key West although it seems a drunk front has! Hmm...can I remember Spring break from my college years? I do remember and they were a lot of fun - we always went to Ft. Lauderdale for a week of sun, fun, and beer consumption. The beaches were always wall to wall bodies with that great sun-blocker rubbed all over - I'm talking iodine and baby oil (see image). Back then we didn't know about skin cancer although I'm not sure how much difference it would make for most of us.

Today I expect to receive my gigabit network card for my desktop. I'm not sure it will make much difference but I'm willing to give it a go. At the moment, I already have the other hardware installed so it will be interesting to see if this actually makes a difference. The biggest influence on internet speed is not the equipment but rather the limits imposed by Comcast. The analogy would be having a Porsche capable of 160 mph with a governor limiting the speed to 60 mph - the equipment wants to go but Comcast puts limits on speed.

I've got another new potential client in Atlanta requesting my help on SEO for their site. The website was built by someone else using online tools and a template provide by the host, Network Solutions. Frankly, the site looks pretty good on the surface but it has tons of coding errors based on W3c standards. With a template, coding errors are rather common I would think and it makes SEO harder. I can help for sure but how much do I want to take on and what will they be willing to pay. Correcting the coding errors on all the pages will be laborious and very time consuming - I don't think they will be willing to pay me to fix the errors. What I can do is improve their search engine results leaving the errors as they are. The page looks good, it's just the coding search engines will not like. I will know more after today.

With the nasty, rainy day, I think I'll watch one of my movies.

Posted at 10:16 am in General | Comments (0)

Migraine Relief

Wed 10 March 2010

Tuesday I had what I believed to be an on-coming migraine headache. In the afternoon I had a headache start which got worse even as I took my pain meds - Tylenol 3 and the Vicodin. The headache was still getting worse when I decided to try my new migraine-specific prescription called Treximet - this is a non-narcotic migraine pill. About 30 to 45 minutes after taking the pill, not only did I get relief but my headache went totally away! This might be a silver bullet for me but more testing is needed. When I use just pain meds, the migraine never goes away but is just moderated - this time the headache went away. I'm not wanting another trial test again soon but if I get one I hope it works as well. The only drawback I see is the damn pills cost about $25 each!!

Research on computer issues is fun for me as many of you know. My project now is to see what I can do to speed up my internet connection short of paying more money to Comcast. I've been migrating to network hardware capable of handling a Gigabit Ethernet - instead of 10/100 Ethernet I'm moving to 10/1000 Ethernet. I've bought a new Linksys gigabit N router, a Motorola gigabit modem, and I've ordered an Intel Pro/1000 GT PCI network interface card for my computer (see image). You need to change all Ethernet hardware to gain the additional speed (if available) and move to CAT 6 cables from the standard CAT 5 cables. For days I've been sampling the speeds I get to set a baseline from which to compare. As soon as I get the Intel adapter I'll install it and see if my efforts have been fruitful. My speed is decent now but more is always better isn't it? Stay tuned.

TB told me he's going to make a run to the Keys in order to see what's happening at the marina where he keeps his boat. Last year there was a lot of work going on so he's going to confirm his space for July. I guess this means the Barnes - Brennan clan will head down as usual although this was the first time Tommy actually mentioned it. John asked me if we could go this past weekend while he was in town - it seems John wants to kick back after his school and work this year. I'm happy to make this happen.

This week has been 'slow' for my work on computers or websites - that's ok with me. I know I can always create a project for myself but you know what...it's nice to take it easy for now. When talking with Gene Waddell on Sunday, he said he had 4 old computers he was not using which he'd like to clean-up and give away. If I want something to do, all I'll need to do is call Gene.

It's getting a bit warmer here - Spring is on the way.

Posted at 02:33 pm in General | Comments (0)

Movie Review

Mon 08 March 2010

Yesterday I took Starr & John to see Avatar - the 2D version, not the 3D version, they stopped the 3D in favor Alice in Wonderland 3D. I'm one of the one tenth of one percent of the millions and millions who saw the movie and didn't like it. From the very start I didn't like the fact the audio was sooooooo loud it gave me a headache - I do not like loud as many of you know. I guess it could have been worse ...it could have been loud rap noise! The story line is so old and warn out in my opinion - you know, good vs. bad etc. Secondly, the whole movie was one big metaphor of the history of native American Indians - they even yelled like Indians do in cowboy movies.

The visual stimulus was good and the technical aspects of the production was good but way take almost 3 hours to produce a modern cowboys and Indians movie? It was way too long IMO. It was interesting to see creatures in the movie which were futurist versions of creatures I've seen in Africa or while scuba diving...like warthogs, rhinos, jellyfish, and coral Christmas trees. So there were some things I found interesting except the story itself. Except the fact the movie was violent and cost so much, I'd expect to see it on the Cartoon Network. Bottom line for me is it was an old tired movie line in an adult cartoon with loud noise. Someone must like it to gross over $3 billion!

Last evening I went to a small dinner party hosted by Gene & sherry Waddell - classmates of mine from my 12 years of school in Vero Beach. The soiree was held for Collins & Barbara Cavender who were visiting from Minnesota - they too were classmates of mine. In fact, I used to date Barbara Clay in high school before she married Collins. There were 10 of us all together for an evening of 'remember when' - no one talked about their lives after Vero Beach High school. I would have liked to learn about their kids, their businesses, etc. Nonetheless, it was fun even though I couldn't remember some of the teachers and events they were talking about - guess I killed off those brain cells storing that memory.

John is headed back to Tallahassee for a couple days of work before he goes with a small group to Key west on Wednesday until Sunday - long trip for such a short stay but that's what kids do. John asked me what I was doing this Summer - he brought up to me that he'd love to go to paradise again this year. This is the first time he's brought it up especially so far in advance - John usually makes decisions a couple weeks ahead of time unless someone like me or his mother pressure him. If he wants to go, I'll be happy to make the arrangements. I've not talked to the Barnes - Brennan clan about another Islamorada trip but if I were to guess, I'd guess they are all in.

Posted at 11:20 am in General | Comments (0)

Installing Spanish

Sun 07 March 2010

Remember I said Walt my landscaper wanted me to change the language in a new Gateway laptop? What I did is what I always do.... research the procedure which lead me to the conclusion the language could not be changed unless the operating system was Windows 7 Ultimate meaning a costly upgrade. After reading through lots of forums and technical sites I discovered there may be a way after all. I found a dude in Slovakia (if you don't know where it is look it up) who has create a small utility which can assist in changing the native language in Windows 7 Home Premium. The programmer did put this warning on his website:

This program is still under development, please be patient if it doesn't work for you right now. In case of problems to start up Windows after language change, please have installation DVD ready and use System Restore to restore registry
Not very comforting to say the least. Walt asked me to give it a go anyway because the recipient can't speak English.

There was a time not so long ago I would not have even attempted it because I was afraid of something going wrong without a clue on how to fix my mess. Now that I've worked on several computers my confidence has dramatically increased because now I do know what to do. I'm not saying I'll get it right every time but if something bad happens I think I can recover. So with my new found boldness I tried installing Spanish on this laptop - it worked beautifully! Now all the text is in Spanish with the exception of the text on some program's GUI (graphic user interface aka. program console). Walt was very happy as was I - I'd hate to have to recover if it didn't work.

Now I was interested in how it worked so I contacted the programmer Slovakia to ask about that. In the simplest of terms, the dude wrote a small utility (less than 1 MB in size) that "fooled" the Windows 7 Home Premium installer to believe it was a Windows 7 Ultimate installer. I bet Microsoft is not all that happy because they want to charge a user more for the Ultimate version. BTW, the program was free and the Spanish language package I downloaded from Microsoft. Cool, huh?

Yesterday I watched a movie I thought would be funny - it really sucked. The movie was "In the Loop". There was nothing funny about it. Who came up with the script for the movie doesn't know what humor really is or has a distorted view on what others will think is funny. Don't waste your money - if I'd gone to a theater I'd want a refund.

Later today I'm going to a movie in a theater for the first time since Syp, sandy, and I saw Jurassic Park in August of 1991. Yes boys and girls, I've not been in a theater to watch a movie in over 19 years but I thought I'd break the drought. With my ability to get movies online and watch them on my big screen TV with surround sound, I've not seen a need to go to a movie. Why now you ask? My psychiatrist gave me homework on my last visit - the homework was to see Avatar. I can't get 3D on my TV yet so today I'm planning to go and drag Starr & John with me. Sound be interesting. Do movies still cost $3.00?

Posted at 09:27 am in General | Comments (0)

Busy Friday

Fri 05 March 2010

JUST DAMN!! My American Express card has been compromised again! This happened just 3 months ago in December requiring my old card to be cancelled and a new one issued. The same procedure will be followed again - my card is cancelled and I'll get a new one in the morning. Of course I'm not out any money but it is a pain in the a*s to change my accounts which use my American express for payment - accounts like Comcast, The Wall Street Journal, Direct TV, etc. Then I have accounts were I buy things which will require a change in my card - places like Amazon, PayPal, Newegg, Buy.com, etc. The good news is I didn't lose anything except the time to change of accounts.

This morning I finally published GG's Fine Food to the internet. The site is not finished but this a good beginning for Linda - you can see here site here: GGsfinefood.com . The colors used were given to me by GG - they are special New Orleans red and green. We didn't put a shopping cart on the site but yesterday I suggested to GG that she set up eBay pages for her initial 4 products with a "buy now" set price. Using eBay eliminates a shopping cart because PayPal is there. I'm sure I'm not through with this site so stay tuned for additions.

Finally I got Walt's (my landscaper - see picture) computer fixed, cleaned, updated, and ready to go - he took it home yesterday. I put a new power supply in so it will boot then ran all my usually cleaning/scanning utilities. then I updated the operating system, removed lots of old programs and then doubled the memory. This machine is not like new but it is 1000 times better than it was. Walt is very pleased - this is the second computer of his I fixed.

Walt bought a nice laptop for the daughter of his supervisor who's from Mexico. The daughter graduated from high school and is headed to college so this is a wonderful gift for a young in a rather poor suburb of Mexico City - probably all suburbs of Mexico City are poor. Walt brought the new machine to me to "get it ready" for the girl meaning uninstalling crap that comes on a new computer then installing AVG, Malwarebytes, and Windows Office 2007. Now comes the "problem" - this morning Walt called to ask if I could change the language from English to Spanish for the whole computer. After my usual research I discovered the language could not be change unless it was Windows 7 Ultimate - it's Windows 7 Home Premium. I did find a site that suggests we can work with Home Premium using certain tools - Walt will be back soon so we'll try. This should be exciting - maybe I can cause the machine to melt down!

The haircut I got last week is 'growing' on me - it's short but I like it. For me, it seems the longer your hair when you're balding, the more the balding is obvious - what do you think?

I've got more to say but I've got to get started on this new laptop because Walt will be here soon. BTW, it is a beautiful cloudless day here in Vero but it is still cool.

Posted at 01:27 pm in General | Comments (0)

TB's Office Computers

Tue 02 March 2010

It's raining here in Vero this morning and it looks like it's going to be one of those nasty, overcast, gray days. The temperatures are moderate but are forecasted to get much cooler tonight and into the rest of the week. This is the kind of day I usually work on a computer issue or watch a movie from my growing movie library. Because I just finished a computer project at TB's office this morning, I think I'll watch a movie.

Yesterday I installed more memory in the Dell computer I set up in Tommy's office - this is the computer I got from Kathryn to clean up for TB. Now he has 1GB of memory instead of 516MB which should be enough. That computer is clean, has Quick books 2010 installed, and connects wirelessly to the LAN at the office. I've set up the computer so TB's office manager can work on the Quick books program from her home - Sally is thrilled.

While I was there yesterday, Sally could not get her computer to boot. She told me it often took 30 minutes to an hour before that old antique would boot - this has been going on for about 6 months according to Sally. What waste of her time waiting for the computer to start each day so I checked out what was happening. It took me about a nanosecond to identify the problem once I looked at what was happening - clearly the power supply was bad. What to do?

There were a couple options available to me to immediately resolve the problem - I could get the power supply out of TB's computer he never uses to put into Sally's computer or I could put Sally's computer hard drive into TB's computer. I decided to change out the hard drives but also found I needed to exchange the network adapters too. And While I was trying to make one good computer, I also took half the memory out of Sally's computer to add it to TB's computer - there was only one available slot. After straightening a few pins I bent, the exchange work as expected. Now Sally has a machine that boots quickly with 50% more memory while keeping all her installed programs - she is very happy but Tommy doesn't know yet.

So why did I go back this morning? A special program they use which is written in DOS would not open - I was baffled because what I did should not have affected any programs. So I decided to try again this morning but in the meantime I defragged the hard drive over night - it had never been defragged in 10 years! It was a mess greater than any fragmented disk I've ever seen. When we rebooted this morning, the program was working again. Here's the puzzle - why is it working because the defrag should not have made a difference in the program. No matter - it works great today.

I'm still working on the Creole site - we've agreed not to try putting a shopping cart on it now. Our goal is to finish it then publish it to the internet before the end of the week. I'm currently awaiting information from Linda about things I need to complete the site. We will both be pleased when it's up.

I went to a neurologist on Friday to consult with him about my migraines which I discovered are 'normal' for migraines. His assistant put me through some testing then I spent about 20 minutes with the doctor. He wants me to try a couple "new" migraine-specific drugs which if I'm lucky will stop the migraine in its track rather than just trying to ease the pain as Vicodin does. With Vicodin my headaches are still there but not as painful as they would be without the meds. He also gave me an anti-nausea drug he wants me to take as soon as I feel an event coming on to hopefully eliminate the nausea. This drug is so safe he says to take it even if I'm not 100% sure I'm going to have a migraine event. Now I just have to wait to get a migraine to test the drugs - I hope I never test them!

Posted at 11:29 am in General | Comments (0)

This Week

Fri 26 February 2010

Alright already - I know I've been MIA for a couple of days but I've been unusually busy helping others with their computer problems and/or websites. I'm not unhappy because I like the challenge of building a website or repairing a computer. In fact, I'm convinced myself when Obama takes my stuff to give it to someone who wants my stuff, I can set up shop and charge for my expert advice.

Thinking of my comment about people wanting my stuff I'm reminded of a philosophy put forth by Atlanta radio talk show host, Neil Boortz. He used to say that if you take all the stuff from people who earned it then give it to those "less fortunate" who want it within a short period of time, the ones who had stuff will have it again because they know how to earn it while those you were given the stuff would eventually lose it. Makes sense to me - how about you? That's one of the reasons why socialism does not work all that well - unless you work and earn stuff, you're always under the control of those in power who can take your stuff to give it to someone else.

Yesterday I got a call from Syp just to say hello and that he was sending some new pictures of his sons, Yari & Djem. My have those boys grown, huh? Of course Syp 7 Sjak see them everyday but I only see them every few months when their pictures are sent to me. Spy reports the boys are growing like weeds (no, not that kind of weed) and they are interested in everything going on around them.It seems that Djem is also blessing Syp & Sjak with some nightly feeding and playing requirements between 9pm and 6am. Just wait until they are teenagers and they'll sleep all the time. Cute kids, huh?

Eariler this week I uninstalled the Quickbooks 2002 I put on TB's computer - this is the program Kathryn gave me. It was too old - it could not be updated. So I installed 2010 on his office computer from my house using TeamViewer. However, I had to go over to his office because Sally couldn't find the model of the computer I needed to order more memory. It turns out poor Sally was looking on the monitor for the model and not the computer tower - a mistake most anyone could make who's uses a computer but knows nothing about a computer. I think most computer users know how to do the things they need to do on a computer but are clueless about the machine and software itself - the exception to this would be your students or other young people who've grown up with computers.

The hot water coming out of the facet when I shave in the morning is very noticeable without any order or smell - the new filter is doing it's job. My hot water without the filter has sort of an "old" smell to it probably because of the old pipes through which it flows. This was noticeable when I shaved or took a shower because hot water produces water vapor to carry the smell when cold water does not. I don't have a cold water filter because I can't smell the water.

Remember the computer my landscaper (Walt) left here to see if I could fix - I got it fixed yesterday by installing a new power supply which by the way was easy to do. I think the computer still has problems but at least it works now - Walt is a very happy camper. The next thing I'm going to do is double the memory from 512mb to 1gb as soon as I exchange the memory I ordered for it. I ordered SDRM memory when it needs DDR memory. Frankly I thought I looked on the original memory to see what it needed but apparently I over looked that important detail. No worries, I'll get it exchanged in a week or so. I ordered more memory for TB's office computer - I hope I got that one right.

Posted at 10:21 am in General | Comments (0)


Tue 23 February 2010

I've decided to take this afternoon off from my computer projects and watch one of the movies I've downloaded. I'm amazed at how easy it is to find movies with the exception of some rather obscure movies in the past like "The Bank (2001)". It's rare that I don't find a movie I'm seeking. Heck, yesterday I downloaded the Sherlock Homes movie which was just released in December. Somehow there are folks out there who have the ability to get DVD's before they are released to the public.

Yesterday Ace came over to do a few things for me to include painting around the light switch in my office, install a new kitchen vent fan, and replace my house water filter. When he went to replace the kitchen fan, we discovered we could just take out the old motor then put in the new one - this saved a lot of additional mess and painting. He took my old water filter out - I was amazed at the debris and black gook in the old filter. This is city water which I know was full of chemicals but I didn't know about the solid matter. The new filter Ace put in is even a better filter than the one removed - I can only image what a mess it will be when I replace it. Jeez!

We've discovered the old QuickBooks software I installed in TB's office computer is so old, it could not be updated. Since Kathryn gave it to me to install I assume it would work. Wrong! In fact, after some research, the inescapable concussion was a new 2010 QuickBook Pro was the way to go - Sally is to pick one up at BestBuy tomorrow. Sally wants to "practice" on the old version for a few days before I uninstall it then put the new version on the computer. This new system will be much more affective than the system currently in place both in price and functionality.

You know how much I love fresh fruit, right? Well the fruit in the markets now mostly comes from Chile. To my surprise, the peaches and grapes from South America are much better than the peaches and grapes I get from US farmers - why is that? One would think fresh peaches from Georgia would be better than peaches from Chile but that's not the case at least for this year. The Chilean peaches are very good - full of flavor and very juicy.

I've been having second thoughts about the Creole lady's website in that I'm getting uncomfortable about the shopping cart. I've never done a shopping cart so I'm really flying blind. What's got me worried is the potential liability facing me if something goes wrong with the credit cards, etc. I don't see that happening but it's still n unknown. I'm beginning to believe Linda and I would both be better off if she actually pays someone to do a shopping cart for her. I've sent her an e-mail and I'll call her soon. This project has grown way out of proportions based on her initial desire for a "simple web page or two". I don't mind building the site but at the same time I don't want to get sued.

Posted at 02:09 pm in General | Comments (0)

Liberals are Watching

Sun 21 February 2010

Yep...you guessed it - I'm up to here in projects. Every time I turn around, another project request comes my way. I guess the word is out that I've been able to fix computer problems - before the word was I can build websites. I guess I'll create a business entity called Bill's website development, computer repair, and bullsh*t service. BTW, do you know why I put the " * " in the BS word - it's because the web server I use will filter certain words and I don't want to offend my many followers. If you put in words which may be used in a elicit way, the post will be filtered.

This past week I was able to save Captain Matt's computer - it was a real learning experience for me. His computer would boot then immediately produce a blue screen no matter how you tried to boot it. What I ended up doing was to remove the hard drive, put the hard drive into an encasement, and then download his documents, music, videos, etc to my computer. Then I replaced the hard drive and performed a basic reinstall of the operating system which fixed the problem. Then I took his documents, etc. and put them back onto the new, clean hard drive so now Matt's machine is perfect. In the process, I also increased his RAM by 50% from 1GB to 1.5GB. The only thing Matt needs to do now is download programs he may want which were erased in the reinstall.

The real cool thing I learned is just how easy it is to recover data on a machine that will not boot. This process came in real handy Friday night when my landscape guy - Walt - could not boot his computer to do his payroll and other business functions. He brought his computer over to my repair shop and after unsuccessfully trying to boot his machine I decided to take the hard drive out and put it into his new computer which he left with me earlier to check and update. We ran into a road block because his new machine uses a IDE hard drive and not a SATA hard drive. No worries, I put his hard drive into one of my SATA machines, downloaded the needed data, and then transferred it to his new machine with the IDE drive. It worked.

Walt left his sick machine with me and the hard drive from the machine which by the way was is horrible shape. The drive was just full of crap, was slower than molasses in a Michigan Winter, and was barely functional. I spent most of the day yesterday uninstalling about 50% of the programs on the computer, I defragged the hard drive (it may never have been defragged before), cleaned all the cache & temp files - were're talking GB's of data - then scanned the machine for everything. Like Drew's computer, it had never been updated so I installed Windows XP SP3 and the 50+ updates after SP3. I now have the hard drive running much better and it's now useable again. Now the trick is top see if I can put it back into his old machine and get it to boot. Unfortunately, I don't think it is a hard drive problem keeping it from booting - I think something else is failing like his mother board, BIOS, etc. Stay tuned.

Yesterday afternoon I took a break from my computer shop to watch a movie I download called Mercury Rising with Bruce Willis - I like Bruce Willis in most everything he does. The move was good but not great - I am glad I watched it. Then I watched another episode of Midsomer Murders before cooking a steak for supper. I found rib eye steaks on sale a Publix this week at $6/pound off the usual high price. Very good indeed.

Did you hear about the school district in Michigan (I believe) which passed out laptops to their high school students but didn't tell the students or parents the school was using the laptops to remotely view the students through the built in web cam?!? This makes my blood boil!!! How dare this holier than thou elitists liberal school system spy on the privacy of their students while the student is at home! It's this sort of "I know better than you or your parents know" which permeates throughout much of the education system. Don't get me wrong, there are many fine, qualified teachers un the school system but I can not say the same for the administration. If this had happened to my kid, I'd spend my very last penny going after the individuals, school system, school board, county, and state in which this occurred. If this is not a true life manifestation of the Orwellian attitude among liberals I don't know what is!! I hope the perpetrators of this grossly offensive act get fried and banished from the community!

To take this one step further, I think the Obama Administration acts in this grossly offensive Orwellian manner as well. It's Obama and his elitists thugs who have an attitude and a policy of control by propaganda, surveillance, misinformation, denial of truth, and manipulation of the past. I have great disdain for Obama. the thugs in his administration, and those who support him - as a group they are trying to destroy this country as we've always known it. Shame on all of them.

I think I'm going to chew some nails now.

Posted at 10:40 am in General | Comments (0)

Computer Repair

Thu 18 February 2010

Where have I been you ask? I've been working on one project after another this week from the time I get back from coffee until it's time for my much need beauty rest. Who ever knew retirement can include so much work? I'm not advertising or asking for projects but I guess the word is out about what I do. Don't get confused however, if I find I don't like something I promise I'll stop. The learning process is something In really enjoy as it relates to all things computer.

This week I worked on the laptops belonging to Drew and Matt - Drew's is on it's way back to Atlanta but I'm still working on Matt's laptop. For Drew, all that was needed was a update of virtually every program on the computer - it looks as if Drew hasn't updated a program since he bought the computer. The major update was to install XP SP3 and the 65 updates which followed after SP3. His Firefox browser was so old (version 1.5) that it would not update and I had to uninstall to put in version 3.6. There are other examples of updates particularly with security software but now it's good to go. After 2 complete scans, I only found 3 nasty little virus/malware.

Matt's computer is a whole different story - it will not boot without a BSOD in any mode I tried including the safe mode. One error message I found when I did boot into his BIOS is there is more demand for memory than the amount of memory installed. During the research process on the error code of 0X0000007E I discovered a lot of new things including how to run diagnostic tests on his system - a 5 hour process I might add. This produced a "IDE device failed: Blank media or no media is present in optical drive". All my research suggests a hard drive failure, a mother board failure, or a control device failure - none are good. Yesterday I ordered an external housing for the hard drive so as I can download from it onto my computer - either it will download or it's fried...we'll know in a few days.

On Tuesday and Wednesday I installed the computer I got from Kathryn into Tommy's office - I reinstalled the OS first so it's like it was out of the box except older. I had to go back yesterday because the wireless adaptor we got for it would not connect to the router in the office. It turns out the password we were using w2as incorrect so eventual I logged onto the router and changed the password. It's all good now.

Some good high school friends of mine are coming into town for a visit so Gene Waddell is hosting a dinner party on March 7th - I plan to go. I've not seen Barbara Clay and Collins Cavender (they are married to each other) since high school. I've seen Collins on Facebook and to me he looks the same but ve not seen Barbara since 1966. I used to date Barbara in high school and Collins was the guy who always set the class curve. The three of us had most of our classes together - back in the old days we were put into "sections" and each section usually had the same schedule. I'm looking forward to seeing them and God knows who else from my high school days.

Today I'm back to working on the Creole lady's site - I hope to have it done soon but there is still the shopping cart issue. Linda wants to change her cart to include various shipping rates - the one I have now set a rate per item. This should be interesting.

Posted at 10:15 am in General | Comments (0)

Nice Weekend

Mon 15 February 2010

This was a nice weekend in part because my migraine headache was gone by Friday afternoon. In addition to that, the weekend was relaxing - the projects I'm on were put in a holding pattern over the weekend. Today I'll start on a new project and perhaps pick up an old one again as well.

Saturday morning I was able to fix a cross-browser problem I had with the Atlanta Creole lady's site which is still in progress. You see, Internet Explorer is very forgiving when it comes to sloppy code where as Firefox is not. That's why I always start testing code with the most used browser - IE - but then correct the code using Firefox - if it works in Firefox, it will work in IE. The issue is finding the coding error in the first place.

This week, Linda is to get me more information she wants on her site. This project started with, "I just want a very simple site with a couple pages" to a website that now has 5 pages and growing. Also, this is no longer a "simple" site with the addition of a 'contact us' page using .PHP and for the first time, a shopping cart. I'm still not 100% sure I'll be able to successfully complete the cart with the shipping variables Linda wants to include. This week should be interesting and challenging.

Late yesterday Ty brought both Brother Drew's and Captain Matt's laptops for me to work on. I've not started yet but I've been told Matt's may not even boot and Drew thinks his is full of crap - most computers are full of crap after several years of usage. I'm pretty sure Drew's will be ok but I'm not nearly as confident about Matt's until I try to boot it later this morning. After my coffee meeting, Drew has asked me to join him for some Cuban coffee and then I need to go to Wally World and Publix - I won't get started on Matt's machine until late morning.

Over the weekend I watched one of the dozen or so movies I've downloaded via my torrent program - the movie was Star Trek. This 2009 movie was a great movie full of action from start to finish. At no time did I want to leave the room it was so full of action. I liked the plot and the actors in the movie which by the way resembled the original cast of the 1960's TV series. This is a movie I'd recommend.

The BIG news I have to report is I received a letter from the Social Security Administration recognizing I'm official "old" and eligible to receive SS retirement benefits starting the 4th week in June. I must say, from the time I submitted my application online until I got the approval letter 8 days later nothing could have gone smoother. It's too bad the rest of Government doesn't work as well. Now let's see if I really do get a check deposited into my account in June.

Posted at 07:58 am in General | Comments (0)

Migraine Again

Sat 13 February 2010

The last few days have been rough in that I had a bad migraine attach that started about midday on Wednesday then lasted through Thursday afternoon - the some what usual 24 to 36 hour pattern. By Wednesday afternoon I could not do anything except stay in bed and try to sleep. As often happens with the "bad" migraines, I got nausea and the pain medication just did not stop the headache - only the passage of time helped me. I've been thinking about going to a neurologist but I've just not gotten around to it yet - maybe now I will.

In the midst of all this, I still had a lot going on. I had Walt my landscape guy come over to survey the area where I used to have tall cherry bushes but now they are 3' tall and look bad. I think I want to pull those out and replace them with plants more similar to the rest of my landscaping. Because of the freezes, the availability of landscape plants is lower than normal which suggests to me the prices will be higher than normal. Walt is to look around and then get back with me.

On his way to Vero yesterday, Drew called to ask if I could help both he and Captain Matt with their laptops. Drew just thinks his laptop needs to be checked & cleaned but that's not the case with Matt's machine. Apparently, Matt's laptop won't even boot - it goes to a BSOD, If it will not boot at all, that's not a good sign - maybe some hardware has failed. None the less, I'll see what , if anything, I can do. Drew is in town until Monday but I don't think Matt will be down this weekend.

I've run into some shags with respect to the website I'm building for Linda. She wants and needs to be able to include the shipping charges based on the total purchase - I'm not at all clear the shopping cart program I used will work as she needs. Also, I can't get the shopping cart to render properly in Firfox - it looks great in Internet Explorer. Maybe I'll work on it later today but then again maybe not.

Posted at 08:10 am in General | Comments (0)

Scampi Grill

Wed 10 February 2010

Yesterday afternoon, Mary Ann called to invite me to dinner with her and Tom at the Scampi Grill - I've been wanting to try the restaurant and of course catch up with Tom and Mary Ann. We went between 6:30 and 7:00 to find a mostly full restaurant but Mary Ann called for a reservation. This place was really cozy, quite, and neatly decorated - so many restaurants are just plain loud these days. It had that gold-yellow color reminiscent of a villa over looking Lake Como in northern Italy ( yes I've been there). The best part about the place is their dishes and at a rather modest price for that kind of restaurant - I don't think any entrees were over about $20 when I would have expected $28+ like every place in the Keys. We all had the daily special - a sauted grouper...mmmmmmm. The whole even was very enjoyable for me and the Scampi Grill will see me again.

Tom and Mary Ann have been here in Vero for about a week but will go back to Atlanta a week from tomorrow to attend a baby shower for Heather and Ryan's new baby - the baby is due in April (best month of the year in which to be born or in my case hatched). BTW, I've not been told if the baby will be a boy or a girl...I think it's a secret. They should name it Billy - a name that both men and women use. Tom by the way is doing quite well.

I woke up in the middle of the night last night with the onset of one of my headache events. This morning as I'm typing this I just took another strong pain pill and likely will need a couple more during the day. Hopefully it will be gone by tomorrow.

Yesterday I delivered a image file for a poster Kathryn wanted me to "fix" - the poster image was made by someone Kathryn knows. The issue was typing errors and location of the text on the poster. Kathryn could have fixed it herself except the image was made in Photoshop and can only be edited in Photoshop - a program she does not have but I do. I've never really used Photoshop before now so I wasn't sure I could make the edits - I was able to figure it out enough to make the edits before Kathryn had time to get home from my house. Now I'm interested in learning more because of this effort - I wouldn't have gotten into Photoshop without Kathryn's request.. Cool.

While at Kathryn's office yesterday, I picked up another older computer with the intend of re-installing the operating system the deliver it to Tommy to use in his office. BTW, the computer Sally uses in Tommy's office is so out of date I'm surprised it worked at all. The hard drive is 20GB and the processor is .8GHz - I've never seen such a slow processor before but then again, I just started fooling with computers about 7 years ago. Now her comes my current quandary - I was able to wipe the hard drive clean and install XP but the machine will not connect to the internet and the monitor screen resolution can not be changed - it looks like the computer was booted into the safe mode with big letters and icons. I worked and worked but gave up when we left for the Scampi Grill.

Overnight I thought about what might be causing the problem and I think I know what it is. Even though I successfully installed Windows, I don't think the drivers needed were installed at the same time. The other 3 re-installs did not have this problem so this is new to me. After I post this I'll see what I can do to resolve the issue or make the computer totally unusable.

Posted at 10:38 am in General | Comments (0)

Shuttle Launch

Mon 08 February 2010

In case you're wondering, I did get up at 4 am this morning to watch the awe-inspiring launch of the space shuttle which by the way was the last night launch of the shuttle. I didn't know it would be the last until I heard it on the news after the launch. It was spectacular in every sense of the word. The sky was crystal clear and there was a crescent moon - it could not have been any better - warmer maybe - but not better. Unless you actually see one of these launches you can't really understand what an extraordinary site it is to see. I'm very pleased I set the alarm to watch this event.

I remember when I was in grade school at Rosewood elementary school when our teacher took us out to the playground to watch the launch of the first astronaut - John Glenn - for his 15 minute trip into space. I was amazed then but really couldn't grasp the whole meaning of sending men into space. Of course I thought it was a good idea so America could get ready for alien invaders - the only alien invaders which we have had since then are from south of the border.

Yesterday I decided to watch another of the movies I downloaded called "Push". I watched it from start to finish - I liked it. There were lots of twists and turns in the movie with plenty of action and surprises. It was not boring nor was it 'familiar' like many movies seem to be. I'd actually pay money to see this one which I can't say about the last two duds. Downloading movies via a torrent is pretty darn neat - that way you don't end up paying for crap.

Today I may work on the site I've been building for Linda but first I want to hear back from her. It would be my luck that I start off in one direction while she has another direction in mind - I've done this before. I'm hoping to complete this project soon - like the next couple of days - but I can't do much more until I hear from Linda.

It's still rather cold (for Vero) - it was 42 F when I went outside to watch the shuttle launch this morning. It seems the weather forecasters are calling for even colder weather mid-week. Of course none of this is like Atlanta in the Winter but it certainly much colder here in Vero this year compared to last year. Oh....it must be that global warming thing!

Posted at 10:14 am in General | Comments (0)

District 9

Sun 07 February 2010

Have any of you folks seen the highly promoted movie called "District 9" ? If you have you'll know what I mean - if you haven't seen it, your time would be better served watching paint dry or grass grow. This movie really, really sucked from start until I just could not tolerate watching it anymore. First, the main character spoke an English dialect from South Africa which was very hard to understand. Second, many scenes had other African-English dialects even worse. It was filmed as if it were a live news report which means the camera constantly bounced around - you could get motion sickness just watching it! The plot sucked. The characters sucked. The filming sucked. The sound track sucked. Thank Buddha I didn't actually pay money to see this movie.

This District 9 was the second movie I've watched in the past week which I though would be good but both were really horrible. There is a great divide between the promotional ads you see on TV and the actually movie itself. Trailers make the movies seem really worth watching when indeed they are not. I've got more movies I've downloaded via my torrent client - I'm hoping they are better which by the way would not take much.

There was to be a shuttle launch this morning at 0'dark hundred but it was postponed for a day due to clouds. The launch is scheduled for 4:14 am Eastern time tomorrow - I plan to set my alarm. I've seen a night launch of a shuttle before - they are spectacular beyond my ability to describe them in words. This launch may be the last launch of a night shuttle launch because the shuttle program is ending - Obama wants to spread the wealth rather than fund research and exploration. My plan is to set my alarm to watch it tomorrow morning - I've even thought about filming it but my Cannon probably doesn't have the lens to make it worth wild. No matter how many times I watch the shuttle launch, I still get goose bumps (chicken skin for you Dutchies) when I see this astonishing rocket soar into space. TV doesn't even get close to this awesome sight - you got to see it in person on the beach.

Yesterday I sent a link to the site I built for Linda (the Katrina victim) - she was amazed and so very grateful for my gift to her. She thinks I'm a saint sent by God to help her - I didn't want to tell her I am God! HaHaHaHa Am I full of crap or what? I did tell her my reward is the satisfaction of helping someone who's trying to help themselves rather than expecting a handout. My efforts are a hand-up not a handout.

I was still disappointed I'd not figured out how to get a shopping cart to automatically complete PayPal purchase forms . So what did I do you ask? I researched and studied the problem and I think I've discovered a solution that will auto-transfer the purchase data to PayPal. In stead of collecting all the shopping information - including addresses - on the shopping cart I built for her site, I can create a shopping cart on her site that gathers the items in her cart, calculates the total price including both shipping & taxes then transfers the data to PayPal where a buy can then input his or her details about addresses and credit cards. Frankly, I believe buyers would prefer this confidential data completion on a safe, secure PayPal HTTPS page than on Linda's open pages. I need to do more work but I'm pretty sure I've got the shopping cart issue resolved.

Posted at 08:55 am in General | Comments (0)

Busy Week

Sat 06 February 2010

I know you wisdom-deprived readers must be close to going into a coma because I've not been here for a few days. Once again I found my new project so time consuming there wasn't much time for anything else. Once I get started on a project, I want to keep on that project until it is finished or at least finished for the first time.

I've been building a website for a lady who was a Katrina victim who is trying to start all over again after losing her New Orleans restaurant. When I say "build a website" I mean starting with a blank notepad then coding everything myself from the HTML in the pages to the CSS file. Pictures needed to be resized and the picture backgrounds needed to be removed leaving only the focus of the image. There were two false starts because I decided what colors and style to use but of course what I used was very inconsistent with "New Orleans - Creole" colors - did you know New Orleans has its own shade of red and green? So after a couple false starts, I got the colors Linda wanted - not my choice but she likes it.

In this process, my knowledge of cascading style sheets (CSS) expanded a great deal. The really 'new' thing I've tried to do for Linda is to include a 'shopping cart' on her site - up until now e-commerce was something I avoided but because I wanted to help Linda, I decided to give it a go. Do you have any idea how many shopping cart software packages are available? Jeez! They range from a free open source package to packages costing thousands. Linda wanted 'simple' and for me, simple is where I needed to start.

After a week's work, I've produced a site which works as it should except for one thing - when a buyer gets ready to check out, he or she needs to enter the total amount into a PayPal account or use PayPal as a credit card source. Getting the amount to automatically enter the PayPal site alludes me at the moment. First, you need to have a PayPal business account to which the info from the shopping cart can be transferred and you need to have some knowledge of a language called .ASP - I know nothing about .ASP at least not yet. The point is we've got something on which to build - I'm going to send Linda a link to what I've done for her to see later this morning. Want a peek? Look here.

This week the City of Vero Beach sent me a registered letter informing me I must cut my cherry bush hedges on the West side of my property to no more than 3' high - they were about 5' high. It seems some gutless neighbor complained to the city about his or her ability to see on-coming traffic. Well, there is zero problem in seeing traffic if you first stop before entering the street. It seems the complainer did not want to have to stop before entering 23rd street. Had the spineless neighbor simply asked, I would have trimmed the bushes - bring the city in was not necessary. Frankly, I think the lower hedges benefit me as much as anybody because I can better see people walking on the sidewalk especially kids. I got the job done.

Captain Matt sent me an e-mail from Vail where all the Barnes -Brennan boys are skiing foe a week. I've tried skiing and could do it well unless I had to turn or stop! Whatever it takes to ski, I don't have it. This trip Matt, et. al. are doing is a regular thing for them. Hopefully they'll bring some pictures back for us.

My cousin Alice gave me her old HP laptop after she got a new one two weeks ago. This HP laptop is about 5 or 6 years old, was slower than molasses in Winter, and full of years of accumulation. The only sensible thing to do was to start all over which is what I did. I removed everything on the hard drive then re-installed Windows XP which now puts the computer back to the way it was coming out of the box. I removed a lot of the needless programs which come pre-installed from the factory and now it's running like a new computer. The draw back is the computer does not have the horse power of newer machines - it has a 1.6GHz processor, Ram upgraded to 512MB from 256MB, a 20GB hard drive., and no wireless card. Nonetheless, for every day use, it will be just fine.

Today's image was sent to me by Matt & the boys - they think of me often but then again, who wouldn't?

Posted at 10:16 am in General | Comments (0)

My Weekend

Mon 01 February 2010

Contrary to the rumors, I'm still alive and well although very busy. Every time I finish one project, another pops up out of the blue. There are other self-made distractions and projects as well - let me mention a few.

John came into town on Friday for a long weekend - his mother said he left today. Fortunately, he came for a visit Friday afternoon - I find if I don't see him when he first gets here, I may not see him at all. He comes into town without plans and within a few hours he's scheduled this, that, and the other thing. He was coming over for a steak & potato dinner on Friday but was a hour late and didn't have time to eat - I ate the steaks over this weekend. I can report John is looking healthy and he says he's doing well. He wanted me to download the first two seasons on "Breaking Bad" which I did and transferred the files to his external hard drive - I've learned how to track down just about any video one might want.

My cousin (the backer) gave me her old, slow laptop this weekend so I can play with it -I've not had time yet. My thinking is I want to re-install Windows if I can find the disks - short of that, I'll wipe it as clean as I can then set it up for a new user. Alice and I will look for the Windows operating system disks in the next couple days.

Between projects I decided to watch one of the 8 movies I downloaded via a torrent. The movie was called "The Fourth Kind" and was highly rated on Amazon. The synopsis was that a few years ago in Canada there was an incident concerning contact from aliens - it was suppose to be from true events. True or not, the movie really sucked! I kept watching hoping it would get better but it did not - what a waste of time! Jeez!

Next I get a call from a lady in Atlanta who moved there after she "lost everything" in the Katrina event a few years back. She had a successful Creole restaurant but it's gone now. She wants to start selling some of the sauces & seasonings she makes herself to restaurants and hotels in Atlanta but she also wants a website as well. A friend of a friend referred her to me - when we talked in the phone she couldn't have been nicer. I could hear the stress of the situation in which she finds herself in her voice. But she's pulling herself up and with the help of her kids and her strong faith she's moving ahead. She called expect I might be able to help and that she might could afford me. Today I blew her mind when I said I'd do what I can and I'll not charge her - I'm willing to help anyone willing to help themselves. More to follow.

Starr brought me some nice fresh grouper she purchased in Ft. Pierce today. There's a market right next to the docks where they sell very fresh fish - I plan on broiling it tomorrow. I really cook fish for myself but when I get some wonderful grouper I can't pass it up.

Kathryn is back and safe. Where did she go you ask? She got on a plane last week and went to Haiti to help. To Haiti! I admire her commitment to helping the down & out but at the same time I believe Haiti is dangerous. I think she has a fund-raising project in mind because she asked about buying some domain names. I smell another project.

Posted at 08:03 pm in General | Comments (0)

Gumbar Attack

Fri 29 January 2010

It's day 3 and my e-mail seems to be back to normal after a hacker enabled e-mail forwarding and disabled my ability to stop mail forwarding. The more I think about it the more I'm convinced it was a teenage hacker somewhere ii Europe. Why a teenager you ask? Well, teenagers have free time, many are very smart, and they like to be a bit fiendish just for fun. I'm impressed with the technical ability some teenagers have to do such things. Maybe they'll go somewhere else next time - one can hope.

I've been downloading some movies I think I'd like to watch via my Bittorrent client. These are movies others have uploaded to a sharing site where folks like me can download them. However, one must be very careful you get just what you're seeking to get without a virus or Trojan tagging along. Naturally I scan each file with security software before I dare open it. The kind of stuff I'm getting probably has a low chance of infection compared to software or games teenagers might want to download.

Yesterday when I clicked on a 'torrent' site I got an "alert" saying my computer was infected and that I should click on the alert to scan/fix it. Fortunately for me, I immediately knew what was going on - it was a "Gumblar" attack. The final payload of this attack could either be a FAKEAV or BREDOLAB malware infection. FAKEAV variants display fake virus scanning results, persuading users to purchase a rogue antivirus program and putting them at risk of information or identity theft. Bredolab malware downloads additional malicious files, which in turn download other malware. Some of you who are reading this I know have been attacked because I've helped to get rid of it.

Because of my previous knowledge about this nasty infection I knew that clicking on anything would start the download. You should just close your browser before the download begins but you can't just close it by clicking on the red box with an X in it. While an alert is opened your browser will not close until the alert is handled first. The trouble is you can't dismiss the alert without starting the download. What to do? If this happens to you, open your Task Manager then click to end the Internet Explorer process which will close opened windows. If Yo do get it, I know how to get rid of it.

John is in town for the weekend to attend a big fish fry at his buddy, Jamie's house - the two of them are going fishing in the river as well I think. My expectation is John will wake up at the break of noon then probably head over my way for a visit or possibly lunch. He requested I get the two seasons of "Breaking Bad" from the ACM channel via a torrent which I have done. Hopefully he remembered to bring his external hard drive.

Speaking of external hard drives, the 160GB My Passport hard drive is already full with TV series I've downloaded. Today I found a great buy on a Toshiba 500MG external hard drive so I ordered it - my thinking is I can fill these up with movies or TV series rather quickly. I especially enjoy the mystery series from the BBC.

Posted at 09:18 am in General | Comments (0)

I've Been Hacked!!

Wed 27 January 2010

My e-mail account works again! Have I got a story for you about the e-mail problem I've had for 11 days now. Here goes.

Mail sent to my b.cherry at Comcast.net account stopped getting to me on Sunday the 17th. I could send but not receive mail and it's been that way until about 11AM this morning. Of course I called Comcast when I first discovered the problem and I have called 7 different times on different days. The Comcast Service desk couldn't help me but they said they'd move it up to a different level. When it got to a higher support level the techs could not find a problem and that's because they were looking at the Florida e-mail account established when I moved. It turns out my old Atlanta e-mail account had not been transferred but I could get mail anyway. So we have one week wasted.

Monday I started calling again and I've called everyday - I was told my e-mail account from Atlanta needed to be transferred to Florida which is true but it didn't explain why I was not receiving e-mails. Finally I convinced a service rep to connect me to a real technician after she saw I'd called 6 times and had 4 open "service tickets". The technician spent almost 2 hours on the phone as she wanted my to logon on here and there as well as test different settings in my e-mail program. I tried to explain my e-mail program had nothing to do with my problem because mail wasn't getting to my account in the first place. She concluded the account was working and the e-mail was been forwarded to b.cherry@operamail.com - an account I did not establish. Of course I did not enable forwarding but someone did. I've been hacked.

Now that we identified what was happening both the tech and I tried to logon to my account settings to disable forwarding but we both got kicked out before we could make changes. The hacker somehow disabled our ability to get into the account. There was this mostly transparent screen which covered the real page but when we clicked to remove the screen we got sent back to the original logon page. I could see the settings and I did see forwarding was enabled. Here's where my experience with coding web pages really helped.

When I was on the page but couldn't get to the settings through the screen, I could view the page source coding for the page. I looked through the code until I hound the secure (https) link to the page to disable forwarding. So I copied and pasted the link just to the forwarding setting and shazam...I got to a window which allowed me to disable forwarding and then once that was done, we could logon to the settings page. The technician was totally blown away when I figured out how to do that - she had no idea how I was able to do that but I did.

Now I can get my e-mail again. I've of course changed my passwords to that account. I expect the account to be transferred to my Florida Comcast account this week. I've sent an e-mail to support at operamail.com requesting my mail back or a way to log onto the b.cherry@operamail.com account. Although I explained everything, I'm not at all confident I'll get my mail -stay tuned, the office is in Sweden.

It is my belief a hacker was involved rather than just a stolen password. It would take a hacker to both steal my password and disable my ability to get into my e-mail account management page. Now I wish I had kept a copy of the source code of the hacked page so I could try to figure it out. Now I'm left wondering how this happened in the first place and why? It seems to me this was an evil trick perpetrated by a mischievous teenager somewhere. What should I do next to prevent it from happing again? I'll think on that.

Posted at 03:19 pm in General | Comments (0)

My Laptop

Tue 26 January 2010

Yesterdqay I said I might re-wire my computers, install the KVM switch, and connect the back-up battery for my computer, modem, and router - I've not done any of that yet. As is often the case I got off on a tangent which occupied all morning and into the afternoon. I'll get around to the re-wiring I just don't know when.

These laptop issues got me thinking about just re-installing Vista from my CD which should give me a clean start. But then I got to thinking, why not install Windows 7 instead of Vista again? So I did my usual research discovering you should do a "clean install" and not an upgrade - there are tons of comments on forums about upgrade failures. I also discovered a CD is better than an online download of the operating system - once again there are pages of posts about the corrupt downloads from Digital River (the download vendor).

I'm going to see how my laptop performs on my next few boots. If it has issues then I think I'll go to Best Buy to purchase the retail box of Windows 7 Home Premium 64Bit. There may be some programs I like which will not work on the 64bit system but eventually I'm sure they will - the 64bit OS is the thing of the future. In this research process I discovered the minimum RAM is 2GB which is what I have now. You know me, more is better so I ordered 2 new 2GB Samsung memory sticks to upgrade to 4GB of memory which is the max for this laptop. Then all my computers will be maxed-out [sic] in the memory category which of course means I'll need a new computer to get more memory.

My "comments" are disabled here because I've not found a fix to the CAPTCHA problem yet. I might just leave them disabled or I might just remove the CAPTCHA function - not an easy task but I'm up to it. The reason I installed the CAPTCHA system in the first place was to cut off the tons of spam posting in my comments. These worthless postings were coming via a bot and bots can't read CAPTCHA. My alternative fix is to put all the offending IP's into my .htaccess file on my website which will block any IP in the file. As the saying goes, there's more than one way to skin a cat.

My Comcast e-mail is still broken - I called again today. It seems an engineer is in the process of transferring my Georgia account to my Florida account which should have been done 2 years ago. Once transferred we can then proceed with a fix. Maybe the transfer will be the fix. I'll call back late today or tomorrow morning.

The Inspector Morse torrent download has been going for 26 hours but does seem to be going a bit faster today. I think it will be completed by tomorrow morning if not sooner. Patience is a virtue I really express - I want it now!

Posted at 12:59 pm in General | Comments (0)

Still No E-mail

Mon 25 January 2010

Jeez! My Comcast e-mail account is still dead after the calls I made last week so I naturally called again this morning. This time I got someone who said I need to be calling the Atlanta area Comcast service desk because my e-mail account is still there - it should have been transferred two years ago but was not. So why didn't the two service reps and rep manager not tell me this last week? It did make sense to me so I called Atlanta, got someone who could not help but transferred me to someone who could. The lady I talked to today was clearly very alert and knew her stuff - at least it seems that way.

The latest Comcast rep and I talked and tested a few things. Sure enough e-mails were not getting to me although the send might think they were. I'm thinking at this point my mailbox is likely full because I've not been able to retrieve any. So the first thing the rep said to do was to actually transfer the e-mail account to my Florida Comcast account and transfer all the e-mails in my inbox at the same time. She said the "ticket" she opened for me explained the account was not receiving e-mails. This process should take about 24 hours and then once done, I might just get e-mails again. If e-mails don't get into my inbox, I'm to call back again after the account transfer to Florida and try again to fix it. Stay tuned.

As I mentioned last week, my website project is done for now although I know there are some items I should do. At this point it's up to the owner to give me additional information needed to fine-tune the web pages for search engines. So at the moment I'm self-unemployed again until the next project comes my way. What I've been thinking about doing to totally re-wiring all my computers adding in a 4 way KVM switch which will permit me to use the same keyboard, monitor, and mouse on all the machines by simply switching between them. I can also connect up to 3 UBS devices to the switch allowing all computers to access the same devices from the switch like my printer and external hard drives - at the moment the printer & external hard drives are connected to just one computer. I also can install my new back-up battery which has been sitting in my closet for about 2 months now. Then maybe I'll just wait, who knows?

Syp has informed me the "comment" function on my website does not work. The CAPTCHA function denies posting a comment because of an incorrect word input - the trouble is the word is correct but the function can't read it. I contacted the Brit who wrote the CAPTCHA script and then tried his suggestions - nothing worked. I wrote him again so maybe he'll have something new for me to try tomorrow. I smell at rat at the server where my site is hosted. You see I have the same CAPTCHA function in two different accounts in different directories and neither works. So for the moment, I've turned off the ability to post comments all together until I find a solution. Maybe this is my next project?

I've been downloading episodes of some of my favorite British programs including Midsomer Murders, Lovejoy, and Poirot via torrents. In fact this weekend I watched two Lovejoy episodes, two Midsomer Murders episodes, and one Poirot episode. These .avi files render beautifully on my big screen TV - they are all digital files I play from the computer I have permanently hooked to the TV. Today I found another British series I used to like called Inspector Morse which played here in the US on public TV years ago. Someone has bundled all 33 episodes into one torrent file 23GB in size - I started downloading this morning and now my torrent client tells me I only have 4 days before the download will be complete. Jeez! Some torrents have taken over a day but this is the longest of them all. The problem is that at the moment 682 people are trying to do the same thing. Can anyone say bandwidth? It may be the end of the week before it's done but I hope it will be sooner.

Posted at 03:08 pm in General | Comments (0)

Tone Deaf

Sun 24 January 2010

Yesterday I took Captain Matt's old college computer I refurbished and upgrade to Starr to replace the all but useless computer she has been using. With years of junk on it from John & Alec, Starr's machine is slower than molasses in the mid of winter. I'm sure it's full of crap, viruses, malware, and God only knows what else. It would take over a minute just to open a file. Now that both John & Alec have their own laptops, I thought the humanitarian thing to do would be to give Starr a clean machine on which she can do her work. Initially I just transferred the files on which she needs to work and installed the drivers for her HP printer. The printer drivers did not want to install but after disabling the AVG security suite in "systems" I did get it installed. Once she's used it for awhile and believes she wants to continue using it I'll transfer the rest of her files. Then with her permission I'll take the old machine to clean it up for the next person needed a computer.

My car detail guy came yesterday and as before, did a great job on my car. It looks like a new car and if I keep having it detailed it will continue to look like a new car. Steve really knows his stuff although he has a bit of a problem with punctuality - no worries, it's worth the wait.

This morning I watched the Sunday political talk show just to see what sort of spin guests would put on the win by Scott Brown in the Senate race. Obama sent 3 of his top aids to cover ABC, NBC, and FOX on these shows. To my astonishment, the Obamaites still don't get it - they think the people of this country still want what they're selling but are simple unhappy with the process. Wrong! People don't want anything to do with the massive government takeovers and terminally disastrous health care bill. People are sick and even scared of the huge Obama deficits and out of control spending in Congress. To make a bad situation even worse, all three White House goons once again blamed everything on President Bush who, by the way, has not been in office for over a year now. Obama refuses to take any blame for the double digit unemployment or soaring deficits - it's all Bush's fault!

The Obama-Pelosi-Reid totalitarianism-style of governing is a failure and totally rejected by the American voters. I'm baffled as to why they don't attempt a change in direction for they expect support for us common folk. Are they that stupid and tone deaf ? It will be interesting to see what happens in the common weeks and months before the 2010 elections in November.

My Comcast e-mail account is still broken - if you wish to send mail use billcherry(at)gmail.com. I'm getting rather pissed off now at the failure of Comcast to remedy my problem which they caused. I'll report when I get it back assuming I do get it back!

Posted at 11:20 am in General | Comments (0)

Dog Rescue

Sat 23 January 2010

Most of you know this but in case you don't, I'm a hopeless animal lover - I love cats and dogs especially sauteed in butter & garlic. It's a joke. It's a joke. I really do have a care and concern about cats & dogs especially those in trouble, malnourished, hurt, homeless, etc. Well yesterday afternoon while I was dutifully watching the FOX News channel, they started covering live the rescue attempt by the LA Fire department of a dog caught in the LA river - a viaduct with 50 feet high vertical walls flowing thought LA for flood control. There was a Shepard-like dog caught with in the water flow with no escape possibilities. It was very clear the dog was stressed, scared, and tired - it would die without human intervention. The LA Fire department brought in a rescue helicopter from which a man was dropped by cable to grab the dog and take it to safety. This lasted for about 45 minutes and was very dramatic keeping me and tens of thousands other viewers on the edge of our seats. The dog bit the rescuer but both are alive and well this morning. I love happy endings. This story made it to the UK - you can see the video here .

Speaking of happy endings, I'm still on cloud 9 because of the defeat of progressive liberalism by Senator Scott Brown this past Wednesday. You see, he didn't just defeat Martha Coakley, he defeated all that for which liberals stand - big government, over-reaching regulations, ever increasing taxation, take-over of private business - the list goes on and on. This was in my correct view a true America victory in that that the lowly underdog with a snowball's chance in hell of winning did indeed win in this most liberal of all states where liberals out rank conservatives 3 to 1. Here we have a no name guy with a family and small business, with zero support from the big Washington political machine, driving around the state in his truck talking to voters about lower taxes, no socialized medical care, transparency in government, and creating non-government jobs - this guy beat the liberal political machine and single-handedly defeated the "Obamaization" of America. When in your lifetime has anything like this ever occurred before? The answer is never! He's a true Godsend - I'm anxious to see him in action.

This morning Steve the detail guy is coming over to detail my car. It rained some yesterday but today it is sunny and very pleasant. I want to take Matt's old computer out to Starr this morning and then be back in time to have my car here for Steve. I'll be back soon with more incredible pearls of wisdom and insight - stay tuned.

Posted at 09:18 am in General | Comments (0)

No E-mail

Fri 22 January 2010

First, for those of you who are desperately trying to get in touch with me via my Comcast e-mail account I sadly have to report it still is broken. If you send a mail, you likely will get a "box is full" return even though there's nothing in my e-mail box at Comcast. I've called 3 times since Monday morning and each time I got a different service rep who could not help other than submit a "ticket" on my problem. Unfortunately it doesn't seem to be a general problem but instead one unique to me at the moment. I say that's bad because I'll have to get into the queue with others who have a singular problem. I think it can be fixed but I have no clue as to when.

Starr & Alec came over yesterday so that Alec and I could boot his new laptop for the first time. All went very smoothly as expected - Alec is of course not new to computers. Have you noticed how much stuff the manufacturer wants to sell after you buy your computer? Many of these offers seem good and without experience these offers almost seem essential to have for your shinny new computer. The truth is they are not needed and there are many much less expensive alternatives if you did want one. Alex was very pleased with his laptop.

I've completed the project I've been working on for about two weeks - some of that time was spent trying to learn how to do something I did not already know. This learning as you go process is how I've gained the knowledge since my first computer purchase 7 years ago. My brain is so full of totally useless information I can't keep on adding information I do not need. I wish I could defrag my brain to purge the volumes of esoteric information.

Starr is going to come back this morning to bring we goodies for my belly - beef stew & fresh grapefruit. She tells me Alex and some friends went to Orlando last night at 10pm to listen to some band. Never ever in my life did I leave at 10 pm to drive 100 miles just to listen to a band. I don't know anyone who's done that either. Sure, I might have driving to West Palm for a concert but that was in the day. Young people today certain are on a different path as they grow up then the worn (and they would say boring) path my generation took. Oh, well.

The guy I use to detail my car was to come over this morning but alas it's raining now. We could use a little rain and my car can wait a day or two. The guy I use did a wonderful job the first time he detailed my car in September so I'm hoping he'll do the same great job. Having someone come to you is nice, very nice.

Now that I'm basically done with my project, I think I'll go watch some TV before I start another one.

Posted at 11:44 am in General | Comments (0)

Scott Brown Wins

Wed 20 January 2010

My Comcast e-mail is not working at the moment - e-mails sent since Sunday have not been received. Use BillCherry(at)Gmail.com

Yesterday I had one of my headache events starting in the morning then getting progressively worse in the afternoon until I had to get into bed around 4pm to close my eyes and hope I did not get sick to my stomach as I sometimes do. This is the "usual" pattern for me - this morning I'm better but not over it just yet. Yesterday afternoon I had to get into my strong pain meds but fortunately that's not required this morning...at least not yet. I did feel nauseous yesterday however I made it through the night. Damn these headache events are a pain (pun intended) - the good news is they are short-lived and reasonable treatable with pain meds.

One thing which helped me through the evening was the game-changing seismic change in the political word by the astonishing win Scott Brown had in Massachusetts last evening. The only thing for which disappoints me is the margin of victory was only 5 points - I was hoping for a double digit margin. Those of you who called me yesterday before the voting ending know I expected a win for Brown and conservatism over the obnoxious proletariat-style rule of the Obama-Pelosi-Reid autocracy. The victory by triathlon athlete Scott Brown represents a defining moment in the political landscape of America. By the way, I found out this morning Senator Brown runs, swims, and bikes miles every morning starting around 5:30. Cool!

Today the liberals will be spinning last night's victory by Senator Brown in all different directions. I heard a commentator described what will no doubt be a lot of finger pointing by the liberals as a "circular firing squad" - one can hope the firing squad is successful! It is my hope Senator Brown's victory will get the attention of the liberal kooks in Congress to the extended they starting listening to the people they were elected to represent rather than the supercilious Obama-Pelosi-Reid triad. I'll of course have more later.

This website project I've been working on for almost two weeks is still on my front burner. I've received feedback from the website's owner as to the edits and changes he wants on the 24 page site. Most changes deal with positioning of text & mages while the edits are for spelling errors and some added text. I should have round two completed today for his review.

One of the new challenges for me was to learn how to put an interactive Google map on his site with a balloon pin at his location - this was not as easy as it should have been in my opinion. It required a fairly good understanding of coding - it definitely was not a simple copy & paste of code. My biggest problem was to find the exact correct latitude and longitude and the Google tool provided failed to do so. I tried several different things but none worked - I was either using the tool incorrectly or it was sick. I tested it against a known result and it worked so something else was going on. There is more than one way to skin a cat so I used a different online service to get the numbers which did work. In fact, David said I got the pin exactly at is office location in Piedmont Square - frankly more luck than skill.

The computer Starr and I ordered for Alex arrived yesterday so I'll likely take it out to him today. As I mentioned earlier, my migraine headache caused me to want to stay in away from the light. When I go out, it is my plan to take Matt's old computer for Starr to use now that Alex will have his own. If she likes it, I'll ask her if I can take her old virus-infected, slow computer to clean it up like I did Matt's for the next needy person. I'm in the computer recycling business it would seem.

Posted at 10:07 am in General | Comments (0)

Voting Tomorrow

Mon 18 January 2010

Tomorrow is the day the People's Republic of Massachusetts will hold their special election for the US Senate - the outcome is very important for the future of our country. Nothing has happened to change my optimistic view that Scott Brown will win. This morning I heard on the news a poll shows him still having a slight lead over the Obama-Pelosi-Reid myrmidon, Martha Coakley. Obama went to Massachusetts yesterday to campaign for Coakley but the speech he gave was to an audience who will vote for Coakley anyway - it's the independent vote which will likely control the outcome of this election. I'll be watching tomorrow night to see how things look.

This past weekend I helped my cousin Alice the baker set up her new laptop - setup upon the first boot is really rather easy. The big deal for her was to get her important stuff off her current laptop to this new one. Using a 4 GB flash dive I transferred everything from My Documents and her favorites. The new Windows operating system seems very cool to me based on what I did with Alice's computer. It reminds me more of XP than Vista so anyone with Windows 7 should be able to make the transfer without too much trouble.

Seeing Alice's operating system in action confirms I still would like a new machine with Windows 7 but I can't bring myself to spend the money - the machine I have is rather good even thought it's over 18 months old. I already have an Intel Core 2 Quad processor at 2.4GHz, a 500 GB hard drive, and 4 GB of RAM. I'm not sure a move up in processor speed would be very useful to me although I'd like to try it. If I were a gamer then more speed would be nice. I'll buy a new computer I just don't know when.

According to FedEx, the computer Starr & I ordered for Alec should be here tomorrow. I'm sure Alex will be very pleased and very surprised. With the design courses he's taking at IRSC, a laptop with horse power will be needed. Reports to follow.

Of late I've not had any headache issues but they can come out of nowhere even before this day is over. Actually I'm in reasonable shape for the shape I'm in - things could be a lot worse.

Posted at 10:15 am in General | Comments (0)

Brown Edges Ahead

Sat 16 January 2010

In just 24 short hours, US Senate candidate from Massachusetts - Scott Brown - has pulled slightly ahead oh the Obama-Pelosi-Reid lapdog, Martha Coakley (see picture). It seems the momentum is on Scott Brown's side and appears to be growing. I continue to be very hopeful he will win the Senate seat which in turn will take away the liberal's super majority. Never have I seen a political race carry so much importance as this one. On the Drudge Report this morning there were several articles explaining why Coakley is falling behind Brown and some liberals are already setting up the spin if she loses - I pray she loses. A leading Massachusetts Democrat was quoted as saying :

I don't think it says that the Obama agenda is a problem. I think it says, 1) that she's a terrible candidate, 2) that she ran a terrible campaign, 3) that the climate is difficult but she should have been able to overcome it, and 4) that Democrats beware -- you better run good campaigns, or you're going to lose."
Kind of sums it up huh - she is a terrible canidate.

To make matters worse for her, the FOX News network reported yesterday evidence of her incompetence as attorney general has surfaced - she's refused to prosecute certain people for hanis crime because pure political reasons. Frankly, I think even the mainstream Massachusetts Democrats are fed-up with all this pervasive behind close doors deal making. I'm not suggesting liberals will vote for Brown but they may not vote at all which will lead to a Scott Brown win. One of the things I know with absolute certainty is pissed-off angry people tend to be motivated and will vote. Should be exciting next week especially if Brown wins.

Remember my problem a few weeks back when I attempted to add another GB of memory to my desktop? I ended up sending the new memory sticks back in exchange for the original memory sticks. I installed them this morning and they worked the first time. The real trick is to make certain the new memory boards are installed all the way into the slots. Thus far, everything seems to be working just fine but I've not noticed any increase in efficiency but then again I've not done much yet.

Last evening I uploaded the 25 page website I've been building over the past week to server space I lease for BillsView.com in order to do real online testing. Some of the pages are coded in .PHP which is a 'server side' language thus it will only execute on a server - I've not installed a server application on any of my computers yet. It seems to be working well although I've sure the client will want to make some changes once he sees it - that's to be expected. What I'm really proud of with respect to this site is it passes 100% the gold standard for websites - W3C HTML 4.1. (go to the link then input any URL - I'll bet you can't find a single website to pass). There are very very few sites on the internet which achieve this standard - TanzaniteAmerica.com is one of them. It shows your readers that you have taken the care to create an interoperable Web page. Frankly, browsers are very forgiving of bad coding thus a visitor really won't see a difference between my first coding effort and the last version which is flawlessly coded. It does make me feel good all the same.

Posted at 10:09 am in General | Comments (0)

Scott Brown - White Knight

Fri 15 January 2010

If you're a regular visitor to BillsView.com then you no doubt know my correct political opinions on many things and especially the out-of-control extreme left-wing socialists elitists who are control of Congress and The White House. These people are so over the top even I have a head time describing just how bad things are and worst yet, how much more abominable things are likely to get with Obama-Pelosi-Reid triad forcing their anti-American socialist agenda upon us. With the absolute majority in Congress and the man-child self-center egotistic Obama as President, there seems to be little most of us can do until the 2010 selections in the Fall. I continue to believe we are in deep sh*t!

All of a sudden there is a white knight that could come riding into the US Senate to save the day and that white knight is Scott Brown, candidate for the US Senate in the People's Republic of Massachusetts. He is running against the Obama-Pelosi-Reid lapdog, Martha Coakley, to fill the seat vacated when Ted Kennedy died last year. Up until a few weeks ago, Coakley was a shoe-in but not now. Scott has come up from 25 points behind to be in a statistical dead even race against Coakley. If you haven't seen Scott Brown, you'll be impressed when you do IMO. He is sharp, articulate, intelligent, level-headed, conservative, and a colonel in the National Guard - the kind of candidate I want to support.

For the first time since I started voting I've come to the conclusion that my vote can make a difference - in this case I'm talking about my vote in the form of a financial contribution to Scott Brown's campaign. In the past when I voted it was for someone in the state in which lived - which is important of course - but there where citizens across the country doing the same thing meaning even if my candidate won, he may not be able to be a game changer. But now I can support someone who if elected will be the 41st conservative Senator and thus a real game changer - his vote along with the other conservatives can stop the socialist liberal kooks in the Senate. This one man could help save America against the frontal assault by the Obama-Pelosi-Reid triad.

I've never asked others to send a contribution to a political campaign but there's always a first time and that time is now. I've already gone online to contribute to Scott Brown's heroic effort to beat liberal myrmidon Coakley. I've asked others to do the same thing and they have. If you a right-thinking like me, you too can make a difference by contributing to Scott Brown. Time is of the essence - the voting will be on Tuesday in Massachusetts but you can vote today at : Scott Brown's fund raising site. The money you send today could save you thousands of dollars in the future if the socialists get their way. Clearly it is the right thing to do (pun intended).

Scott Brown's Website

My Project

Wed 13 January 2010

So I guess you've been wondering where I've been and what I've been doing, huh? My status as self unemployed has kept me particularly busy in the past week and that status is likely to continue for awhile longer. I've been actively doing something from about 5:30 am till I go to bed around sometime after 10 pm. What is that all about you ask?

The main focus is this 25 page website project I started in earnest about a week ago - I think it was last Wednesday. It's this 25 page site I'm building for an architect turned lawyer in Atlanta who wants his Powerpoint slides coded into web pages. The biggest part of the project was to make a home page with the title, graphics, colors, gradient, spacing, navigation bar, and text font which complied with that which he wanted - a virtual copy of his Powerpoint presentation. It took from Wednesday of last week until late Monday afternoon before that goal was aconite - you see it is the home page which will be the template for all other pages. Yesterday I started on the next 24 pages but this should go faster.

It's been unusually cold here in Vero in fact, some of my landscape plants got damaged by the cold - no worries, once cut back I think they will grow back. We've had over a week with temperatures not getting above about 60 so if that's Vero, it must be butt-cold where you are at the moment. I talked to TB yesterday about his groves & tree farm - he reported he has not found much damage yet so he's very hopeful he won't find damage. Much of the state set record cold temperatures including Tallahassee where John's going to school.

Starr has been coming by a good bit lately and on Monday she brought me a container full of homemade chili - I really like chili. Her recipe is wonderful! The chili was full of large chunks of meat & vegetables with a nice bit of heat in the taste. I was surprised there was any left to bring to me with Alec and his buds camping out at Starr's house playing games. She also brought me the 2010 version of her brother's (Steve) home made barbecue sauce which is also wonderful. I do appreciate these culinary delights because they are things generally don't make and when I do, my results are not as good.

Later this afternoon, my baker cousin, Alice, is going to pick me up for a computer buying try to Best Buy here in the Vero Mall. She has recognized my expertise in the area of computer hardware and software thus prudently decided to ask me to go with her. She seemingly has found what I think is a good buy but you never know until you get there. I hope it is not a "we've run out of that laptop but for a mere $350 more you can have..." type trip. Also ads in the paper often talk only about the good things and leave out some important things. For example, the ad for this HP laptop talked about the 4GB of memory and 500GB hard drive but forgot to mention the processor's speed - anyone who knows about computer functionality knows the processor speed is very important. Heck, I'd even go so far as to say the processor is probably number one on the list of important features. Memory is cheap - going from 2GB to 4GB can be accomplished for about $50 or less. But going from a processor speed of 2.0GHz to 2.2GHz or higher could cost hundreds of dollars especially on the high end. So, we shall see - stay tuned.

Posted at 07:59 am in General | Comments (0)

Am I in Florida?

Sun 10 January 2010

Damn...if I didn't know better I'd think I was still in Atlanta. Yesterday afternoon it was in the 30's with a light, cold, bone-chilling rain - the good folks of Vero are not used to this type of nasty cold weather. Rumor has it that Orlando at a bit of snow or sleet. I got it...it must be caused by 'global warming' don't you think? How can anyone not believe in global warming? Jeez! By the way, I have a bridge in New York I want to sell to you.

On the positive side, it's warmer her than back in Atlanta where I understand it is bitterly cold. I remember on Christmas about 20 years ago when the daily high in Atlanta did not get above 8 degrees with a wind chill factor of -12 - now that is cold. No matter how hard I tried, I could not get my house warm because of all the glass. I wanted colder weather around Christmas - I guess I should be careful as to what I want, huh?

The big project I'm working on is coming along - I'm still trying to nail down the template so as I can start building the site. As I mentioned, this project started with nothing but an image fro which to work. I've had to code everything from scratch but it has been a learning experience for me. I'm getting o the point where I don't remember all the code I need but I do know what to look for and where to find it. Just knowing what to look for gets me 80% there. I think I'll be able to actually start building the site this coming week.

I now have all of the Midsomer Mystery series and about 80% of "Lovejoy" - another BCC series I like. These two series take up about 100GB on an external hard drive. If I continue to download things like this, I can easily see needing more storage. Because of these new downloads, my main back-up external hard drive is about 85% full and it hold 500GB! Jeez..weho would have thunk [sic] it?! Of course the Western Digital 'My Book' external hard dive has all the data from my first and second desktops as well as all these video files. Not to worry...I just bought a Samsung 'Story Station' which will hold 1TB of data. Never in my wildest imagination did I ever think I'd might want and ultimately need a full Terrabyte of storage - that's 1,000 Megabytes for God's sake. I've not hooked it up yet but I will soon.

Starr came over so that she and I could order a new laptop for her son Alex to use in college. We ordered him a new Dell Studio Laptop with a good bit of horsepower. It has a Duo 2.5GHz processor, 4 GB of RAM at 800GHz, and a 500 GB hard drive. With a HD monitor, built in web cam, and 2 DVD/CD drives I think he'll have all he needs. We were able to get the machine with shipping and taxes for less than $1000 - it should be here before the end of the month. I know you can get laptops for less but with his field of study - graphic design - I think he'll be happy with the power of this machine. It should be able to run two or three Adobe applications at the same time. Alex doesn't know it's coming so don't tell him.

Posted at 10:55 am in General | Comments (0)

My Newest Project

Fri 08 January 2010

You've missed me again haven't you? I know how important my wisdom and incite is to you and when it's not available some of you panic, go into deep depression, or withdraw from the world. So, although I've not got much time this afternoon, I thought a few comments will help you through the rest of the day and into Saturday.

Why have I not posted you ask? Well, it's this new project I've been working on almost non-stop since Wednesday. It's the 25 page website I'm going to try to build for an Atlanta architect turned attorney. For the last couple days I've been trying to build the template from which the rest of the site will be built - the pages and info will change but not the basic layout of the title, navigation bar, and footer. So what's the big problem you ask?

For the first time I was given images from which I was to build a site which when rendered in a browser will look like the image. Basically I had that down in the first day except the gradient background did not look good on the owner's monitor although it looked fine on mine. So I first tried to make a new gradient background with an image editor but no matter what I did it the results didn't work for him.

The next thing I tried after doing a lot of research is to create a gradient background using JavaScript - that actually looked good to him. At this point I ran into a roadblock because the navigation bar I made also uses JavaScript as most all navigation bars use to animate the drop-down links. The BIG problem is you really can't use two JavaScripts on the same page - they conflict with each other making the navigation drop-down to fail. Now what?

Being resourceful, I found a way to make a gradient background differently without a big image or using JavaScript - I thought I'd hit a home run. But wait - the new background still did not render in his browser and at this point I smelled a rat! You see, the pages looked fine in the 3 computers and two different browsers in which I tested them so what's up with that. I asked the owner to check the settings for his monitor and bingo...I identified the problem. His color setting was at 16 Bits instead of the standard 32 Bits and when he changed it to 32 Bits the problem was fixed. I was trying to remedy a problem with my coding & design when the culprit was his computer. I'm very relieved after 3 days to get a template page on which the rest of the site will be built.

So that's what I've been doing - sounds like fun, huh? Actually I learned a bunch of new stuff in the process which could be useful to me in the future. I almost always learn something when I take on these projects - I like that.

Starr is on her way over so we can get a laptop for Alex . I'll sign off for now but in those famous words, "I'll be back!"

Posted at 04:44 pm in General | Comments (0)

Another Migraine

Wed 06 January 2010

I've had a level 3 migraine which started on Wednesday morning and is still with me now - it is 5:30pm on Wednesday. I've had two take two of my strongest pain meds during the day but maybe that will be it. If things go as they usually do, I'll be over this current event by noon tomorrow. Reports to follow.

The major project I mentioned a few weeks ago is now back in full swing meaning I'll probably not be as attentive to my daily updates for a few days. This project is to build a 25 page website from images I've been given - usually I just start from scratch so this is an all new challenge for me and I love it. The BIG deal is to get the home page just like my 'client' wants it and then use that as a template for the rest of the site. The biggest problem thus far is he wants a gradient background with a smooth transition from side to side and top to bottom. Unfortunately, a gradient background is an image which means it will render differently on other computers based on the screen resolution of the monitors being used. Unlike a regular image, a back ground image expands or contracts to fit the screen and with a gradient image unsightly lines may appear. I've spent most of the day on the background but I've decided to stop and start fresh tomorrow.

When completed, this will be my biggest project to date and I'll have learned some new techniques in website coding - this stuff is fun for me. Additionally, I like the guy I'm trying to help so I'm willing to take what ever time it takes to get it right. When I breakdown my compensation based on the hours I spend I'm not sure I'll get to minimum wage! However, that's not the goal - the goal is to learn and have fun completing the project. Just wait, you'll see.

It's been colder than a witch's titty in a steel bra for the past few days and will remain cool. I wanted cooler temperatures so I got what I wanted. My HVAC system has been running almost constantly to keep my house warm - there have been record lows recorded for some of these days. Starr said she couldn't get her house warm enough so I loaned her my two ceramic heaters I used back in Atlanta. Even my urban outdoors men buddies have had to come in out of the cold. Oh well, it sure has been nice.

I've been continually download torrents of Midsomer Murders and the "Lovejoy" series from the BBC. I've got one season let to get on Midsomer murders and 3 seasons on Lovejoy to get then my collection of these series will be complete. I may go watch one episode now rather than watch all the political crap on TV.

Georgia Tech lost last night to Iowa - the Yellow Jackets couldn't score against the Iowa defense. Last night, Iowa was clearly the better team. Oh well, I'm still most pleased with Tech's record this year and there is always the 2010 season only 9 months away!

Posted at 06:40 pm in General | Comments (0)

Orange Bowl Tonight

Tue 05 January 2010

In case you may have forgotten, Georgia Tech plays Iowa in the Orange Bowl tonight - kick off is at 8:15. Damn I hate night games especially bowl games which tend to last longer with more commercials. Of course I'll have to watch it until my hair hurts because Iowa is beating the Yellow Jackets. Georgia Tech is a slight favorite but I know that mistakes, fumbles, and interception can be the downfall of any team. If both teams play well, it should be close but if one makes a lot of mistakes the other is likely to win.

After tonight, college football is over but I'll be anxiously awaiting with pregnant anticipation the arrival of the 2010 college football season 9 months from now. I wonder if I'll have morning sickness? I'll like want to consume more ice cream to help me cope until September. Actually I'm glad there is a season - I'd likely get board if it was a year around event like baseball seems to be.

Update on my memory board problems - yesterday I returned the two Samsung boards along with a request for a switch to the original Samsung memory boards instead of the updated ones. With four 1GB boards all being the same, I should not have a problem adding memory. Perhaps I'll get the order next week then try an install once again.

Starr is coming by today for a nice gab session - when she's working it's hard for her to relax and have time to absorb the warm glow of my aurora as I radiate bliss (or is that bullsh*t?) It's a nice sunny day here in Vero but the coolness is still in the air - I like that. Perhaps Starr & I will go for lunch over on the beach and watch the Yankees swim in what must be very cold water. Stay tuned.

My house keeping folks are going to clean the carpet in my bedroom suite on Thursday. It's only been down for 2 years but during that time construction was still going on generating drywall dust. Then of course Sally Cat has deposited two years of cat hair - no matter how often the carpet gets vacuumed, there is always cat hair left behind. Charlie says he wants to do this as a favor to me but I feel I should pay him and I'll try to do just that. He just wants to express his appreciation for the website I built for him but the difference is I like building websites - does he like cleaning carpets?

Ther's a rumor that the Ramblin Reck may make an appearance tonight in the Orange Bowl - that would be really cool.

Posted at 11:40 am in General | Comments (0)

Computer Problems

Sun 03 January 2010

From about 10 am yesterday until around 4 pm yesterday I spent on my main computer in the process of trying to add 1GB of memory to bring it up to the maximum of 4GB - I already have 3GB. I was told I needed to install memory boards in pairs so I ordered two 1GB Samsung boards to replace the two 512MB already installed with two 1GB boards. I've installed memory before so this was not a new adventure for me - what was new is I could not get both of the two new 1GB boards to work. When I put the two in, my machine said it still had 3GB but did not see the 4th 1GB memory board.

For the next few hours I installed, uninstalled, moved the install location, and tried every thing else I know to do to get the 4GB installed. I cleaned the plugs where the memory boards plug in with compressed air incase there might have been dust. I uninstalled them and then put them back thinking I might not have all connecting points on one of the boards not pushed in far enough which by the way is a common error.

Then I was thinking that because the speed of the new boards is 800MGz while the old boards are 666MHz this could be the problem but have research on websites I discovered they should work together but not for me. After a few hours I was beginning to think one of two new boards was bad but at that point I was tired of trying. So, I e-mailed the place where I purchased them requesting that the two I bought be replace with two 1GB boards of the original speed and manufacturer - I've not heard back from them yet.

So I put back all the original memory boards and guess what...my computer would not boot. I uninstalled the boards and then installed them again until my computer worked once again. Because of the difficulty I had with boards I know to be good, I'm thinking I might should trying the new ones again - maybe the connects were not good. At this point I'll wait to hear back about the exchange because it could be one of the new boards is bad.

When I did get my computer to boot, I could not get my files or certain Microsoft built in programs like the Task Manager to open. Jeez! I think I may have broken Explorer.exe which is used to open files and some programs because non Microsoft programs I tried to open did open albeit slowly. Time for System Restore but unfortunately even that did not work until I went back to 4 days ago and finally I got my files and programs to open but slower than they used to open for some reason. I did a chkdsk run which yielded some issues so I had to run it again at boot so it can fix the issues. Now my machine boots at it's usual fast speed but sometimes it takes longer than what it used to take for explorer.exe to function properly. For now I'm done trying to break this computer until I find out something about the memory board exchange.

This whole event was a learning process but in this case I didn't have much fun. At one point I thought I might have created a valid reason for buying a new computer but I failed at that too. BTW, I have all of my data stored on an external hard drive so if my computer was broken, I would not have lost data. If you don't have your files backed-up, you ought to do it now.

Posted at 11:37 am in General | Comments (0)

Identity Theft

Sat 02 January 2010

So the colder weather I wanted for the Christmas - New Years holidays has now arrived here in Vero. The temperatures for the next 15 days are going to be on the cool side meaning I'm not sure the highs will get much above 70 and the lows down in the 40's or perhaps even 30's. For me, a bit of colder weather makes things seem more 'normal' after the cold winters I experienced in Atlanta for 43 years. I remember one Christmas when it was about 0 on Christmas day - so cold you couldn't even get your key in a car door to open it. So cold that diesel fuel turned to jello thus cars would not start. With the wind-chill factor, it 'felt' like -12 degrees. With all the glass in my Atlanta house, my furnace was running 24 hours a day trying to heat my home. Vero is not like that - that's a good thing.

Earlier today I was going to a Facebook page of one of my Facebook friends and all of a sudden my security software through up an alert blocking access to part of the page's data. The alert said my MasterCard number was being sent out of my computer without my permission to an unsecured site. Actually what happened is the URL of a picture that was to load on the Facebook page had a sequence of numbers which matched the last for digits of my MasterCard numbers - it was not an evil attempt to steal my card number.

These security alerts are very rare and in each case in the past were either legitimate or a false alarm like the one today. This alert was a good reminder as to why I have security software to protect my computer and protect confidential information from being stolen from my computer. In today's environment of identity theft, you can never be too careful IMO. The software I have will block any data I chose from leaving my computer without my permission - data like credit card numbers, social security number, passwords, username, or anything else I want it to watch. I've had this feature for sometime now but never paid much attention to it until my last AmEx credit card compromise about 6 weeks ago. This security feature is in my software so why not use it? If you have software which will do this blocking, I'd suggest you might want to use it - it certainly can't hurt.

If I wanted to be a thief, identity theft is the way I'd go. This sort of illegal action is non-violent and seemingly rather easy with as much of it going on as there is. Heck, I'm cautious with my credit cards yet my AmEx card has been compromised about 4 or maybe 5 times in the past few years. When I use it online, it is always on a secure (https) website with encryption and when I use it in person, the card almost never leaves my hand as I just swipe it through a card reader. Yet the card number - never the card itself - has been stolen. I don't like jail so I think it's best for me to stay on the right side of the law.

The best bowl game thus far has been the Auburn - Northwestern game in which Auburn won 38 -35 in overtime. What made it particularly great is all the strange plays - when you thought a play was good, it got called back. The Florida game was boring so I didn't watch much - I'm happy Florida did win. The ACC teams have lost 2 out of the 3 bowl games in which they played - I hope Georgia Tech can improve on the win - lost record Monday night.

Posted at 10:38 am in General | Comments (0)

It's 2010 Already!

Fri 01 January 2010

My how time slips by as you get older - yet another year has pasted so quickly. I've wondered why that is because when I was young, years went very slow - maybe I was waiting for Christmas all the time. Actually, as you get older, each passing year represents a smaller part of your entire life. When I was 10, a year was 1/1oth of life. But when I was 50, a year was only 1/50th of my life and thus each year you get old represents a smaller time span compared to the years you lived. I think this is why years go by so quickly as we age which by the way is better than the alternative.

It's been two weeks and two e-mails since I asked what I thought was going to be a new website client for information and opinion. It could be he's just busy with the holidays and work but I'm thinking he may have decided to go elsewhere. That's his right of course, he has no obligation to me in any manor what so ever. I've learned a good bit of things since I started the project as it relates to a Powerpoint file - learning new stuff is fun for me. Perhaps he didn't want to pay my standard fee referring to find someone else who claims to be able to meet his goals for a smaller fee. As you folks know, I do this website stuff because I like it not because I'm paying my bills with it. The only thing I would have liked is he telling me no thanks if he decided to move on. I'll be able to tell of course because I know what the site looks like now so I'll watch for changes.

Many of you know Marilyn back in Atlanta and for those who don't she is a friend I met through Wendy. Her profession - design work - was hit like many others in the last year but two days ago she told me she has a new job. She also has a name she'll use with respect to her design work - SpecSolutions. She asked me about getting a 'business' e-mail address and maybe even a very small website - she came to the right place. In the last 36 hours I hooked her up with a URL - specsolutions.net - and a business e-mail address - mpaulson@specsolutions.net...she is most pleased. I was happy to do it for her and in the process save her a good bit of money as compared to using an online site for the things she wants. She will be shocked when I tell her how very little it will cost for host server and e-mail addresses. The next thing is do put together a small site for her which of course I'll do for free. For those who know her, send her an e-mail at her 'business' e-mail address she'll love it.

Yesterday I was looking at the pictures of the year in the online Press Journal one of which was a picture of a guy holding a tarpon he'd caught - a 200 lb. tarpon. For some reason, it occurred to me I'd like to put Drew's face on the guy who actually caught the fish. Have a look at today's image - what do you think? Once again, I love the learning process of how to create such an image. Although I have Adobe's Photoshop I still don't know how to use it so I used Paint.NET which I've used for years. I'll get around to teaching myself how to use Photoshop one of these days - it is very complex.

I got a new Samsung external hard drive that is very highly rated and was offered at a price I could not refuse by Newegg.com - I use this online store as one of my 3 online sources for stuff. BTW, the other two stores I use are Buy.com and Amazon.com. Here's the kicker...it is a terabyte hard drive! Why so damn big you ask, you can't have that much porn you ask. Well, I've found that the movies and TV series I've been downloading take up a lot of space - the Midsomer Murders will be over 65 GB once I've downloaded them all. Plus, I think I want to store everything which formerly was in "My Documents" to the external drive so as to free-up space on my computer's hard drive. Really, it was a great deal which I just had to buy - you know how much I like to shop!

Today is the granddaddy of college football games so of course I'll likely watch a some of them. Georgia Tech plays in the Orange next Tuesday night at 8pm - I hate those night games.

Posted at 10:46 am in General | Comments (0)

"Catastrophic Failure" - Obama

Wed 30 December 2009

Posted at 10:12 am in General | Comments (0)

Arends Clan

Mon 28 December 2009

I've had a busy Monday morning as is usually the case - I choose to get my tasks done on Monday after coffee. Today it meant a trip to Home Depot to pick up new indoor plants to replace my poinsettias which were going down hill fast. Then on to Publix, Wal-Mart, and then home. On the way out I dropped some cake samples by Mary Ann's house - these are the wonderful cakes my cousin Alice bakes for me. While visiting last week, Mary Ann got a sample of the apple bunt cake and thought it was to die for. I gave her more of that cake plus samples of a couple more. Tommy & Mary Ann are headed back to Atlanta tomorrow and the cakes will be with them.

John came by just after noon today to say good bye - he's headed back to Tallahassee until the next break. School will not start until after the first of the year of course but John's employer needs him to work this week. Last semester he made all B's - I hope he continues doing that.

Yesterday I received some Christmas pictures from the Arends clan in Holland. I thought I'd post one today so you folks can see how much the boys are growing. Everyone is healthy & happy over there in the land of windmills and wooden shoes. Both Syp & Sjak stay very busy with work and the two active boys - Djem is about 6 months old now so you can imagine the attention he needs and receives of course.

I watched the movie "Slumdog Millionaire" on HBO just recently. The movie was ok but I can't see why it got so much praise and awards. It was good enough for me to watch it without getting board so that's a good thing. The story line was good and very plausible yet I still don't get why it's so popular. I guess I generally like a mystery movie with twists and turns and plenty of action. Maybe I'll rent one on Amazon later today now that I have a computer set up to my TV. I did watch 2 of the Midsomer Murders yesterday afternoon and early evening - it's nice to see them commercial free. As we speak, I'm downloading yet another season but the going is real slow because few 'Peers' are available. At the same time, I'm uploading files from the series I previously downloaded - the torrent network works on the share bases and would not work at all if not for the peers uploading like me.

The additional memory for my main computer arrived which will max me out at 4GB - the new computers can go a lot higher into the 8+ KB range. I'll have to disconnect this main machine in order to install the new memory sticks so I thought I might just disconnect everything then hook it back up in a more orderly fashion. I might even use my 4 computer KVM switch so I can run for different computers with the same monitor, mouse, and keyboard. In addition, I've got that new back-up power supply which I can install in the process. Maybe I'll take this project on in the next day or two.

Posted at 03:13 pm in General | Comments (0)

Sherlock Homes

Sun 27 December 2009

I didn't feel good yesterday - I was not 'sick' but felt lousy nonetheless. When I awakened at 0-dark hundred my left eye was very painful - it felt like either my eyeball got sunburned or scratched. I know what sunburned eyes feel like because I once burned them with a sunlamp in my youth. Well I've not been under a sunlamp so I must assume it got starched somehow. There was this piercing pain along with watery eyes and running nose. This could have been an allergy I guess but having been allergy free most all my life I wouldn't know for sure. And if it were an allergy, why in just one eye and not both? It bothered me all day long although it got better as the day went along. This morning I don't have the problem. Strange!

When I can't keep both eyes open and I want to vegetate what better to do than to watch TV. Fortunately I found something I liked - TCM was running the old Sherlock Homes movies all day long. These were the ones made in the 1940's staring Basil Rathbone - there were 12 of them in all 6 of which I watched yesterday. The movies are about 75 minutes long and in black & white but great 'who did it' movies. I love 'who did it' movies which I why I've downloaded 6 seasons on Midsomer Murders to watch at my pleasure.

Speaking of the Midsomer Murders I want to be able to watch, yesterday I made that possible. I took the computer Kathryn's mother had and installed Windows Media Player on it along with all the codex available to run different formats. The 'standard' WMP 11 will not play .avi files which is the format of the videos I downloaded - installing a codex package fixed that. I also installed the driver for a wireless keyboard & mouse then put the computer in one of the cabinets in my big media center - the computer is out of site. After connecting my big screen to the computer, I'm now able to watch almost any video file via this setup by plugging in one of my external portable hard drives with the files in a USB port. Cool, huh?

The only problem thus far is the wireless keyboard has very limited range...about 6 feet I'd say so I can't sit at my writing table with this keyboard & mouse like I want. Worry not, I ordered a new wireless keyboard & mouse using the 2.4gh protocol which claims a range of 10 meters (that's about 33 feet in American). Soon Ill be able to keep the keyboard & mouse in a drawer in my writing desk then pull it out when I want to use it. Now to make things even better, I plan on installing a Linskys USB wireless device on this computer so I'll even be able to surf the internet or stream video which will be seen on the 67" Samsung - I may work on that today. Damn I'm good, huh?

It's the Sunday after Christmas which means all the boys are going back to work - I believe they'll all leave today. I'm grateful these young guys will be contributing social security taxes to help fund my old fart's social security income once I'm eligible next year - you can take early payments as young as 62 which I plan on doing while the funds last. While he was here, Drew made some sketches and took some pictures of my gold Spanish coin. He discovered from the markings it was minted in Mexico City and is a two escudo coin - he found identical looking coins in the State of Florida archives. What all this means I don't know but because of Drew, I know a lot more than I have over the past 45 years.

Posted at 10:03 am in General | Comments (0)

Christmas Feast

Sat 26 December 2009

Christmas was rather quite around my house and on the streets of Vero - most folks were in for the holiday thus not traveling much. I didn't check but my guess is all the stores were closed but today should be a busy day with returns and exchanges. Today is also a great day to buy Christmas decorations, cards, etc. for next year. I've got projects so I'll likely not even leave the house.

The dinner at Mary Ann & Tom's was wonderful as usual with many of my holiday favorites. The main course was roast prime rib of beef cooked to perfection and although there were 12 hungry dinners, it seemed only have of the prime rib was consumed. You never run out of food at a Barnes-Brennan affair. There was mashed potatoes, green beans, sweet potato casserole (tasted like dessert), stuffed mushrooms, salad, and probably other stuff I just missed. Not only was the dinning experience wonderful but being with the Barnes-Brenna tribe is always fun for me. Another successful holiday event.

My take home doggie bag had more prime rib in it than I can eat in days - I had no idea Mary Ann loaded me up with so much meat until I got home. I'll be enjoying the Christmas meal again and again for days to come. Of course I also brought home some home made pecan and pumpkin pies - I think pecan is Mary Ann's favorite and she makes an especially good one. You've heard the saying "he's got a sweet tooth" - well, I got a whole mouth full of sweet teeth I got from my Dad's gene pool. This Christmas I received brownies, cookies, cakes, and pies - how much better could it possibly be? John even brought me two containers of that outrageously smooth & creamy ice cream from the beach ice cream shop - that stuff must have the highest % of butter fat of all the ice cream I've had and I've had a lot!

It was warm and a bit humid here yesterday but today is a bit cooler and dryer. I'm still getting used to the Florida Christmas season again. I still would like it to be cooler - my air conditioning was running yesterday. I bet the Dutchies did not have their air conditioning on yesterday - come to think of it, they may not even have air conditioning. I do like Winters here I just wish they would stat earlier.

I've got some projects on my plate for today. I might actually permanently hook up a computer to my big screen TV like I've been talking about for months. I've been thinking about using Kathryn's mother's old desktop because it is not noisy like others I have like Matt's college computer and the Dell Optiplex I bought on eBay last Spring. The computer is old with only 512MB of memory and a older Intel processor but it should be good to run Windows Media Player. I've got several things I want to try but I'll wait until later to explain.

There are at least 3 bowl games today with the 4:30 bowl game between North Carolina and Pitt being the one I think I'll like the most. I may catch a movie as well between computer testing and bowl games. John said he might come by today as well to help me with my Crown which is going bad - he leaves for Tallahassee tomorrow to go back to work and then school after the first of the year. My how time seems to just slip away.

Posted at 09:18 am in General | Comments (0)

Computer Cleaned

Thu 24 December 2009

Once again I've gotten distress calls from folks who desperately want me to share my thoughts of the day with you. I understand - if I where you I'd want to hear from me too. Demand for me is always high but seems to be much higher this time of the year. I'll do the best I can but can't give promises now. Am I full of crap or what?

Much of the day yesterday was spent on Kathryn's mother's old computer - vintage 2002 - in cleaning it up, removing about 80% of the non-Microsoft installed programs, running scans for viruses & malware, cleaning the registry after all the uninstalls and then updating the operating system. It seems that the XP Pro operating system had not been updated in years and when you do update, there is a sequence you need to follow. I installed SP3 and about 45 other updates to bring it fully up to date. After taking all the old out-of-date security software off, I installed Malwarebytes and turned on the updated Windows firewall - I've not put an AV program on just yet although I did online scans to remove nasty things. I know have a clean, fully operational computer albeit old. It has a an old Intel processor and only 512MB of RAM but it works.

The first snag yesterday is the computer asked me for a password to logon which I did not have of course. I called Kathryn to see if she knew and the first suggestion worked. Funny, if I had to guess the password I would have tried the same one Kathryn suggested - wonder why I didn't even try? Hmm. Before I got Kathryn I researched ways to get around the password and frankly there are none without the original software disks. Jeez...I would have thought there was a secret but if there is, I could not find it. The only solution without the password would be to reinstall Windows.

Kevin along with his mom and dad came by for a visit early evening while they were out searching for Christmas displays - reports are the displays are limited. I remember my family would always ride around at this time of the year looking for lights and other displays - it was a tradition while I was young. Yes boys and girls, I was young once upon a time in a galaxy far, far away. Anyway we had a very pleasant visit and thankfully Kevin helped use some of my Crown before it goes totally bad.

I've got a couple projects I can work on today and I want to just kick back in front of my TV to watch a movie - if there's not one on cable or satellite I'll download one to watch. I may not even leave the house today - I've got plenty to do here. My cousin Alice brought me a wonderful apple cake she made for me yesterday so my goal today is to eat it...well, some of it anyway.

It's 73 here this morning - doesn't feel like Christmas after my 43 years in Atlanta where it was usually cold.

Posted at 10:47 am in General | Comments (0)

My Plate is Full

Wed 23 December 2009

Where should I begin with what I've been doing? Every time I think I have a little time to write a post something comes up. The good news is I'm well, happy, and as whacked as ever.

Let's start with the e-mail I got at 4:45 this morning while I was looking some things up on the internet - I'll talk about that later. Ebay sends me a letter saying to go to a site to change my password as requested but the trouble is I did not request it and it was a real e-mail from eBay. Then I get a e-mail saying my password has been changed a few minutes later. When I tried to logon to my account, I could not get in - the password had really been changed. So, I sent an e-mail to eBay saying I forgot my password at which point they directed me to a page to login to reset my password but first I had to answer questions which only I should know. I got in, changed my password so now whoever got in can't get in anymore. Frankly I've not quite found out why someone would want to get into my account because while you can bid for things, there is no payment information like credit cards in the eBay account. I then went to my PayPal account and changed my password there just to be safe.

The e-mail from eBay listed the IP from which the request was sent so I looked it up. It was a proxy server located in West Africa just like the TV commercials you see where someone's identity was stolen by criminals in Africa. The only info they could have gotten is already available in other places like a phone book. Now I'm thinking about changing all my passwords to 'critical' accounts like Bank of America, American express, etc.

I woke up on Monday with what was the beginning of a headache event which lasted until about midday on Tuesday - it was the same old usual thing. I've been ok since the headache went away - it was not so bad I did not want to do anything as long as I kept it under check with meds. I think I'll schedule an appointment with a neurologist to get checked out again like I did in Atlanta a few years ago. Dr. Director seems to think it is a form of a migraine and I tend to agree. My "regular" doctor would likely send me to a neurologist anyway so I'm not even going to him first. Reports to follow.

On my last post I talked about the British TV series I like so much called Midsomer Murders but I could not find it on any of those sites where you can watch TV series. So I found some torrents of the series including individual shows and collection of seasons which usually have 5 to 7 shows in them making the download between 2.5GB and 4GB. The speed of torrent downloads is dependent on the number of "seeds" available and the number of "peers" trying to download. The higher the ratio of seeds to peers the better. Well I was getting download speeds of 2, 3, 4 KB per second meaning it would take weeks, months, or in some cases over a year if the speed did not go up. The trick is to find a torrent with the largest number of seeders of course and the highest ratio of seeders to peers - I am a peer.

As you download you also up load giving back to the process so others can do the same. So, on any given torrent I'm both uploading and downloading at the same time and when I've got 100% of the torrent I could and should continue to upload so others can get what I've already gotten. Because I was getting nowhere fast I started researching how to get better speed - this is a complex algorithm almost like trying to figure how to increase your ranking on Google. First, you get a better download speed if you play by the rules and upload instead of just downloading then going away. Ratio of uploads & downloads and the speed ration between the two needs to be tweaked. I also discovered ISP's - including Comcast - "throttle back" speeds when torrents are being transferred to limit bandwidth but of course I found many creative users on forms with ways of tricking my ISP into not slowing my speeds down. My whole point in telling you all this is I've taken this up as a project to learn as much as I can. BTW, I was able increase my download speed by 1000% and now I have several seasons on Midsomer Murders downloaded.

Yesterday I went to drool over Kathryn's shinny new Dell with Windows 7. My initial sense is the new operating system is faster than Vista or XP and has lots f new bells & whistles. Her computer has 6BG of RAM - my computer can not handle more than 4GB of RAM without upgrading the hardware. When the right deal comes along, I'll like get a new computer because after all, I only have 4 working computers now. I told Kathryn what I was doing with Captain Matt's old computer so she gave me her mother's old computer to work with as well. I've not got a clue about the computer but will soon learn when I boot it later today (I think).

John turned 22 yesterday - he'll likely stay in bed most of the day to recover from his party.

Posted at 10:38 am in General | Comments (0)

Movies and TV

Sun 20 December 2009

My life of recent has been extra full with this, that, and the other thing. From the time I get up in the pre-dawn hours until I go to bed, I'm busy doing something even if it's just watching a movie. The weather has finally cooled down here in sunny Vero - it now "feels" more like the season . I know visitors and winter residence folks like warm can't we just keep things as they are today for the next couple weeks?

This morning I'm going to Wally World to pick up a prescription, some light bulbs, and the bottled water I like. On the way I'll stop by my cousin Alice's house (she's the fabulous baker) to give her Captain Matt's old computer I've cleaned and upgraded. She has a laptop which is 6 or 7 years old and on its last leg - the hard drive is only 20GB and continually makes a noise while running as it the mechanics of the hard drive are about to go. This machine of her's is sooooo slow I don't know how she manages to use it at all. I knew I would find someone who could use the Captain's old computer I just did not know who. She'll have to buy a monitor but other than that, she'll be good to go - at least that's the plan.

You folks now how much I love fruit, right? Well, the fruit this past Summer was not all that great - the peaches sucked, the melons had little flavor as did the plumbs. Now the US growing season is gone, fruit from Central and South America is coming in to the markets. The cantaloupes are great and full of flavor as are the grapes from Chile. Why are these fruits coming from outside the country so much better? I think it's because the US farmers pick the fruit way to green thus they never really ripen.

I've not seen John yet but frankly I didn't expect to for a few days - he has his hommies to hank with first. Tuesday is John's 22 birthday and to celebrate he's having a party at home. Starr is getting worked-up about the number of people likely to come (40-ish) and the food/beer required. There is also the issue of Alex's buddies still in their teens wanting to party with big brother John and the keg he'll have. Starr will manage as she always does.

Speaking of Starr, she's had the cold-crude for more than a couple weeks now - she sounds horrible on the phone. Rest is what is needed to allow time for her body to recover but with the substituting she's doing, the tutoring, the holidays, and John being home she has refused to rest. I've gone on runs to get medication for her but meds only cover the symptoms it's rest she needs. Starr tells me she'll rest between Christmas and New Year but I have my doubts.

Yesterday I decided to watch a couple movies - both kept my attention although "Rules of Engagement" with Samuel L. Jackson, Tommy Lee Jones and Ben Kingsley was the best (based on actual events) - the other one, "Max Payne" was just ok. So I'm likely going to see what I might want to watch later today in that I'm on hold with regard to my projects.

you know, it's damn amazing I can't often find something I want to watch considering I get both cable and satellite TV with over 7,849,734 channels to watch! I may have over stated the number of channels a bit but I really do literally have hundreds from which to chose. I've found streaming movies from Amazon which is a good thing but what else? Do you folks remember how much I loved the British series called Midsomer Murders? I watched it religiously ever Sunday while living in Atlanta. Well, I looked for it on the BBC network I get but it was not there but I wasn't going to let that stop me so I went online to search for it hoping I could get one of these sites which make TV series available. No go! Not one of the sites like Fancast have it available but that was not going to stop me either. I went to my favorite torrent site and guess what I found? There are many episodes available for a torrent download all of which are 650MB to 750MB in size which is the good news - the bad news is there's a lot of demand making downloads very very slooooow. I'm going to try a few things then report later - I did manage to get one episode downloaded overnight. Stay tuned.

Posted at 10:18 am in General | Comments (0)


Fri 18 December 2009

It seems with holiday season here I've gotten busier than usual. This is ok but it has caused me to skip a few 'regular' things like bring my pearls of wisdom to you folks. Be brave, I'll be back as soon as I can.

At the wee hours just before daybreak, John arrived from Tallahassee for the holidays - I think he'll be here a week but I've not talked to him yet. He drove down after work last night so I know he's tired - I get tired driving to Publix!

On Sunday, the Barnes - Brennan boys will arrive in Vero from Atlanta and other points. Tom and Mary Ann are already here leaving only Ryan & Heather to arrive on Wednesday. Although I think they will all be here for at least a week, the visit will seem to fly by as it always does on trips of short duration. I've alerted the local authorities.

It's been raining for the last couple of days but should stop before tomorrow leaving nicer weather with lots of sun, lower humidity, and cooler temps. GREAT! Isn't it written somewhere the weather is suppose to be clear and at least cool if not cold during the Christmas holidays? With good weather, the opportunities are many.

The Atlanta lawyer project continues as I better learn what he wants in his web site. I've set 4 templates I created for him to review - I really would like the basics resolved before I go on with building more pages. The 'basics' include the background , navigation bar location and style, and basic page format. Once these things are finalized I'll build the other 24 pages.

The additional memory for Captain Matt's old computer arrived yesterday and was successfully installed. What a difference the memory has made in the performance of the computer. I did go from a remarkable low of 128 MB to 630 MB with the addition of two 256 memory modules. To my surprise, the machine's mother board can actually handle up to 2 GB of memory! I've now got the machine clean and running smoothly so the question is now what? I'm not sure just yet - stay tuned. When it stops raining I'm going to take it outside to clean 8 years of dust which has accumulated inside. Geez...what a dirty mess.

This effort with Matt's old machine has inspired me to maximize memory in my desktop. It currently has 3 GB but the maximum is only 4 GB. I needed a new 1 GB memory module but had to by two 1 GB modules because the modules have to "match" on a dual channel memory system. Until the install ion in Matt's computer I didn't understand just how much faster enhanced memory could make. Yes, I knew it would make computers faster but my understand was the most important part of functionality was the processor speed. I hope to get the memory next week before Christmas.

Posted at 03:08 pm in General | Comments (0)

Busy Tuesday

Wed 16 December 2009

I hope this is not going to be one of my real bad headache days - the tell tail signs are there. Late yesterday afternoon it started in on my when my normal meds did not work so I moved up to the meds I rarely use - that did the trick. The reason I'm concerned is I awoke twice during the night with a headache and need some additional medication - I very very rarely wake up at night with a headache. Stop it!! I hear you people saying, "if I had a head like yours, mine would hurt too". This morning I've taken a little more and at the moment I'm ok - what I don't want is for these damn things to get worse leading to nausea like a few weeks back.

When I was with Dr. Director, I told him about these events I have to which he said I might very well have a migraine headache problem at some level. It certainly seems that way with the frequency of the headaches particularly the bad ones. However, I don't have some of the other symptoms of migraines to which Dr. Director said there is a whole range of migraines. For the moment I'm ok and I plan on a day at my office.

When I woke up at 4:45 this morning, it was so foggy I could barely see the Baptist church across the street. About a hour later the fog had lifted leaving a clear sky. I sure wish this damn humidity would leave and the temperatures would go down. The good news is both of those things should happen by this weekend.

Lina called asking for help with her computer - it was giving her strange alerts and asking for money. She had the nasty program installed on her computer without her knowledge. Here are some of the symptoms she was experiencing:

* A Window impersonating Windows Security Center stating that you should purchase Personal Antivirus.
* Numerous alerts stating that your computer is under attack or that you have malware running on your computer. If you click on these alerts, Personal Antivirus will be installed, or you will be brought to the purchase page for the program.
* Your Internet Explorer browser will be hijacked to show security warnings when browsing the web that stop you from reaching your desired page.

This damn thing hides itself meaning you can't see it in your Task Manger to stop it and it stops security programs from working like AVG and Malwarebytes. It basically turns itself on at boot with no option to turn it off! Using the HijackThis utility I was able to stop it at boot and then run Malwarebytes to pull its roots out of Lina's registry - her machine is now clean once again.

Starr has been sick and continues to be sick with a throat - nose infection thing. She sounded horrible yesterday! Frankly she needs to just go to bed for however long it takes to get ride of this crud - rest is what her body needs to have time to heal. Of course there's this little matter of work.

My new "client" called late yesterday to discuss the test page I created for him. There are some changes he wanted which I expected of course - my mind-reading ability was on the blink because of my headache. Now with his direction as to what he wants based on what I've done, I can work on completing the home page which will be the bases for all other pages - there are 26 pages in all. This will be quite the task but I'm up for it - I'm just awesome huh? After coffee this morning I'm going to create a background based on what he wants - a dark grayish color with a gradient from the center to the sides of the page. This will require a bit of trial & error until I get it just right - you know how demanding I am to get it right. It's tough being as perfect as I am!

New Project

Tue 15 December 2009

I know. I know. I've been absent for a few days and some of you are having withdrawal symptoms - some have even called begging for my views and wisdom. Well, I go a new project midday on Friday which has kept we working almost non-stop since then. When I do stop, I'm tired of being in front of my computer so I go watch FOX News to get irritated about the things Obama is doing to us. Then I watch something totally unrelated to the real world like "Bones" or "The Closer". So the bottom line is I'm just as fabulous as always just taken over by this project.

Now you are suppose to ask what project? A friend of mine from Atlanta has a neighbor who has been trying to get a website built but the people he hired to do it just failed. It was one of those big law firm related sites which build websites for attorneys and provide a national lawyer database. They had the project for months and months then what the produce had no resemblance to what the client requested. My friend said he knew a brilliant retired old fart in Florida who might help so he called me on Friday.

This project is different than any I've taken on before and because it has new challenges I find it totally fun and amazing. I get started in the morning and the next thing I know it's dark - the time on this project is "timeless" in that I have no sense of the hours going by. For me, if there is something I do without awareness of time, then I'm having fun. Now you want to know what's up, huh?

Once again I'm confirming I'm a geek under this kind, gentle, loving outer presences you admire sop much - I'm getting deep into the BS, huh? The "client" is rather interesting himself in that he was a practicing architect for 20 years then went back to law school to become a lawyer - he now practices the focused area of construction law with a base of knowledge very few lawyers have - he was in construction for 20 years. The guy created a 21 page Powerpoint presentation about his practice which if possible he wants it reproduced as a website. The presentation is very well done especially the layout and visual appeal but then you would expect that from an architect wouldn't you? So that's my project...take a Powerpoint presentation and write code to reproduce it into a HTML website.

This project may sound easy but it is not. You see, I'm starting from scratch creating all the code and files without an outline except for what amounts to a picture. The first thing I needed to do is figure out how to get the images in the presentation out of a .ppsx file - you can't copy images from Powerpoint. So, I installed the Powerpoint application and the rest of Microsoft Office 2007 onto my computer so I could manipulate the file - still not easy but learning all this stuff is fun for me. I discovered a way to convert the .ppsx file into a .htm file then save it to my computer. With an .htm file, the images are kept in a separate folder so now I have all of his original images - this took about half a day to figure out.

Now the question from those of you who know would be why not publish the .htm file as a website? Good question so I tried but the problem is the presentation just becomes viewable in a IE browser but looks like a slide rather than a web page - the steps to get this far were no easy task requiring a lot of trial and error.. Actually it looks ok but the bad news is it will not render in any browser except Internet Explorer - all other browsers fail to produce the page and with IE losing market share, a web site needs to work across browsers.

I'm back to were I started having to write the code from scratch and added web site flexibility to the images from which I'm working like navigation for example. Yesterday I created the home page and e-mailed a link to it so the client can view it online - I expect to hear back from him today and if he likes it, I've got 20 more pages to do. Now you see what I've been doing.

Today's image is a screen shot of the first Powerpoint slide and my coded web page - can you tell me which is which?

Posted at 09:52 am in General | Comments (0)

Decadent Brownies

Fri 11 December 2009

Just for the heck of it I looked around the internet to see if I could find more memory for Captain Matt's computer and if so, just how much would it cost. Google lead me to MemoryStock.com, a after market seller of various types of memory but not original Dell sticks. On my initial search I found sticks but they were really pricey as I previously mentioned - this site was more reasonable and more in line with memory sticks I've bought in the past. I already have 750MB of spare memory but of course it will not fit in the Dell antique. Because so many programs require 512MB I thought it would be good to get it as long as it was not expensive. I found two 256MB sticks for under $75 so I ordered them - they will make the machine more useful and you know how much I need yet another computer.

The poinsettia plants I bought last weekend are already looking bad! Plants I bought in Atlanta would last for weeks and weeks but not these. At this rate they'll be ready for the garbage by sometime next week. I got one at Home Depot and one at Lowes - they both seem to be going down hill fast.

I've made an observation about Sally Cat - she can distinguish words at a level which surprises me. Of course cats can learn their name but Sally knows the difference between 'back door' and 'front door'. You see, my security system will make an audible statement when a monitored door or widow is opened. If I open the back door, it says, "sensor 18, back door open" or when I open the front door, it says, "sensor 1, front door open". If Sally is asleep in my bedroom suite on the bed, she'll come running to the front door when I open it but will not come running if I open the back door - she likes standing on the window shelf and then poking her nose out the door to smell the air. It seems rather clear to me she can tell the difference in the similar - sounding monotone announcements. Of course she does not understand 'sit', 'stay', 'come here', etc.

The UPS guy brought me a box which contained the best (regular) brownies I've ever tasted and I've tasted a lot! Laura Gately made me a batch just like the ones from last Christmas. You know, I can usually buy things I want within reason but I can't make or buy brownies as wonderful as are these. I think Laura should contract with a bakery to bake her recipe then sell them online as one of those treats you can order online. Or sell them to non-profits as a fund-raising tool. Or make big ones and sell them to restaurants as a dessert for their menu. Of course this is easier said than done. She tells me the recipe is not a supper secret but buyers would not know that, they would just know the brownies are sinfully decadent. Why not ? Well the answer why not is she is a psychologist with a PhD which is probably much more financially rewarding that brownie sales. But let's not thought the idea away, just put it on the shelf.

Posted at 07:54 am in General | Comments (0)

Matt's Old Dell

Wed 09 December 2009

After lunch yesterday (a Publix lemon-pepper chicken sandwich) and a 20 minute power nap I started working on Captain Matt's old college Dell. It booted and seem to run fine but I didn't try much before I starting working on it. The machine is good although the 40GB hard drive is small in today's standards and the 128 MB of RAM is a joke but if you're not trying to run Adobe Flash on it, even that tiny bit of RAM will get you by. I did look into increasing the RAM but the memory sticks are so pricey it would not make sense - a new machine would be cheaper!

First I downloaded all of Matt's My Documents and My Briefcase to a flash drive and then I erased all those files. I looked for his great porn but could not find any - he must have the videos hidden. Then I went on to uninstalling a whole slew of programs which are not needed or I could replace with a better versions if needed like Microsoft Office, Zone Alarm, and Norton anti-virus. There were a bunch of games and other programs I've never heard of before. During the uninstall process, often I'd get an alert like 'the blah-blah.dll is not needed anymore but may be used by another program - do you want to uninstall it too'? Well, far be it for me to figure out what .DLL's to keep so I trashed them all - my back-up plan was to reinstall Windows.

After all the un-installing I rebooted only to find a Microsoft alert saying 'Explorer has stop working' which is not a good thing. Jeez, did I uninstall something I should not have? You see Explorer is what renders your desktop and opens folders like 'My Documents' - when it quit, the monitor went blank...no desktop or system tray. I rebooted and got the same thing so I decided to reinstall windows but I ran into a wall. The Windows XP disk I have did not have the number of license characters the installer was requesting - it wanted 25 and I only had 20 - what's up with that? The only thing I can think of is that the machine may have had an operating system before XP and was upgraded to XP. Maybe it had ME originally installed? Anyway, I was now sucking a hind tit.

Never one to give up I rebooted the machine again with the same notice about Explorer but before I clicked ok, I tried to open Internet Explorer which did open then click ok at which point Explorer decide not to stop after all. The machine seemed to be working again and upon a reboot continued to work at which point I stopped fooling with it for the day. Now later today I'll boot it again, maybe do some more clean-up, install AVG Internet Security Suite, scan the machine, and then decide if I want to update the operating system - my guess is the machine has not had the OS updated in 10 years.

There are other things going on but I've got to go to my appointment with Dr. Director now.

Posted at 09:32 am in General | Comments (0)

TB's Hogs

Tue 08 December 2009

TB, great white hunter, dropped by early afternoon yesterday so I could take a picture of the hogs he bagged around noon in one of his groves. These were big pigs - they were over 100 pounds each. He shot the hogs because they've done a lot of damage in his groves and where continuing to tear things up. Hogs are very destructive in their never ending search for food. After I got some pictures, he gave the creatures to his work crew whom I'm sure will make good use of them.

This morning after coffee I went out to my uncle's house to see if I could fix his weather station rain measurement device. When I rest the station about a week ago, it did start working again but was clearly not measuring correctly. I took the rain collector device apart to clean it of debris and then re-mounted it differently and more securely. It now seems to be working when I tested it but the real test will come during the next rain event we have - I'm hopeful it is now fixed.

On Sunday I couldn't find a good movie on TV so I rented "Sate of Play" online from Amazon then streamed the movie to my laptop and then connected my big TV as the monitor. It was a good movie full of twists and turns with a new surprise every few minutes. It was fast moving so I was not bored at all. The basic theme dealt with Washington corruption, murder, and the news reports trying to uncover the evil deeds. It was a good choice. I'll rent another movie again via Amazon - I like the way this works.

Tomorrow I have my scheduled appointment with Dr. Director. At this point I'm not looking for any change in medication as to frequency or amounts. Believe it or not, I'm still learning things about how I can get things better and frankly I don't thing a greater dosage of anything is what I need right now. Sure, there are times when I feel I need a larger dosage but I want to minimize what I can relying instead on other non-pharmaceutical solutions. So I'll suggest I go another 90 days under the same plan as the past 90 days. Knowing myself the way I do, my default reaction is always more is better. So I want give myself more time before I suggest any chances if I suggest any changes. Stay tuned.

Yesterday I got Captain Matt's old college computer which he no longer wants. My thought is to reinstall the operating system with the idea of making it clean of the junk and like a new machine. I'll first save all his documents to an external drive before I wipe the hard drive clean. I'm not sure how big the hard drive or memory is at this point but I'll find out soon enough.

Posted at 01:38 pm in General | Comments (0)

New Cafe

Mon 07 December 2009

Posted at 01:16 pm in General | Comments (0)

Yellow Jackets ACC Champs

Sun 06 December 2009

I'm a happy camper this morning in part because Georgia Tech beat Clemson 39 - 33 to win the ACC championship and has been invited to the Orange Bowl to play Iowa in a BCS bowl game. And I can say the game was an exciting game just the way I like them. I didn't like the fact Tech was behind with a minute and a half to play but they did score again so I did not need to be taken to the hospital top have my heart started again. The game that surprised me the most was Florida's loss to Alabama - I thought Florida was going to take it all. Now college football is over except for the bowl games which can be good or nt.

Yesterday morning just after 8 o'clock I headed over to the Indian River County health clinic to stand in line to get a H1N1 vaccination shot - it was the first time the clinic was permitting everyone to get a shot even if they were not in the "at risk" group. Actually the line was not long at all and it moved rather rapidly. This was by far the best organized government sponsored event I've ever attended - I was in and out in about 20 minutes. They had the place staved with so many helpers no one had to wait long. I got the shot because I could - frankly I think my chances of getting the H1N1 virus was close to zero anyway. Besides, the reports say that old farts born before 1955 seem to be resistant to the virus - true...us old farts have been through a lot and are tough.

Later I headed to Lowe's to pick up a poinsettia plant for my kitchen. The stores were not crowded because it was early and raining water buffalo - I don't melt so the rain was not an issue. I don't plan on going overboard on poinsettia plants like I did in Atlanta - one for the kitchen and one for my office is enough. I reserve the right to change my mind of course.

Lina's Internet Explorer browser was broke - it would not load pages she visits requiring Adobe flash. Also, the browser did not have an address bar - Lina has been using Google to get to any and every page. The flash plug-in for the browser was defective and I could not uninstall the flash object to install a new one. Much to my surprise, her browser was IE 6 - I'm surprised because this is a new computer and not only did IE 7 come out about 2 years ago, IE 8 has been out almost a year. Me wonders...why would Dell install such an old browser in a new desktop? Needless to say, my solution to the various problems was to install IE 7 which when completed fixed everything.

I did scans on Lina's machine which lead to the discovery of 4 "MyWebSearch" adware infections but no virus - I removed the objects. I'm a bit surprised because of all the security I installed when I first hooked that machine up. These things were not real nasty but ultimately could become bad. For now, Lina is good to go.

The newsletter I get called Windows Secrets is just terrific - full of ideas, software recommendations, warnings, installation instructions, various fixes, etc. Well, the folks who are responsible for the newsletter have opened what was a previously restricted forum to all paid newsletter members which includes me. Knowing how great the newsletter is, I had to join...besides, it is only fair I share my wisdom with others on the forum. Heck, they may even beg me to become a contributing editor! Not!

Posted at 08:47 am in General | Comments (0)

Feast of Sinterklaas

Sat 05 December 2009

Happy Feast of Sinterklaas to my Dutchie family.

A couple days ago, Wednesday to be exact, this page was down with an access to the server and a 403 error. I discovered my 'Home' .PHP file was empty of all my code so replaced the file so all is well again. When I contacted the folks who own the server on which I lease space I was told my blog.php page was using too much CPU which interrupted others on the same server. Standard operating procedure for them was to such down the CPU hog, blog.php (the file in BilsView you actually see. Too much CPU...what's up with that?

I first looked to see if my comment pages were being spammed again even thought I installed a CAPTCHA requirement to post a comment - that was not the problem. Why so much usage? I looked at the logs of my page views which lead to the discovery I've suddenly have over a 100 unique visitors which it's self is not a problem - the problem is about a dozen of those IP's were viewing hundreds of pages with one IP looking at over 2000 pages since December 1. What the heck is up with that? Why are these hits coming? Nothing is happening to the site and no spam is added to my comments.

I've contacted the 'abuse' folks at my server to ask if they could give me further guidance. In the meantime, I've blocked access to my site from these 13 IP addresses with the hope this will fix the problem. It is also interesting to note all of the offending IP addresses are in Germany or the Ukraine. Are hackers trying to do something ? Or are they simply trying (successfully on Wednesday) to shut down my great site by overloading the server? Could I have had a DoS (denial of service) attack? Stay tuned.

Once again the Yellow Jackets are playing at night! Of course I'm most pleased they are in the ACC play-off game but why couldn't it be mid-day? The SEC play-off is mid afternoon but they are playing inside the Georgia dome so it doesn't matter what time it is. The Clemson Tigers are the opponents - a team Tech defeated early this year but not by much. It depends on which Georgia Tech team shows up to play tonight as to the possibility of winning the game. If the team without mistakes and enthusiasm goes onto the field, then Tech might very well win again. If there are fumbles, interceptions, special team mistakes, Tech might likely lose.

Last night was a sad night in that one of my favorite TV series came to an end - Monk is through although the ending sure left it wide open to come back at some time in the future (ie - no one got killed). The ending was good but not unusual to a typical Monk ending. I'll miss the series but there will be re-runs I'm sure.

The series White Collar ended it's season but will be back in January along with Burn Notice. The season finale for White Collar was cool leaving the view wondering what the heck is that all about - I'll find out in January. There sure are great series on USA and TNT cable networks.

It's been raining off and on for a couple days now which is good. I'm headed off to Home Depot and Lowe's to look for some plants. I may download and watch a movie later depending on what's on TV. I'm also joined another help forum to avail the good folks on the forum of my expert advice and uncommon bullsh*t.

Posted at 09:02 am in General | Comments (0)

BillsView Down

Thu 03 December 2009

Did you try to view my pearls of wisdom on BillsView yesterday morning and get an alert about not having access to the server and a 403 error? Well as you can see, it's now fixed but there is a mystery about just what the hell happened. When trying other links on BillsView they all worked it was just the main Blog page that was not accessible. I went to work on the problem with my friend Google which suggested there was a missing index file leading me to look at blog.php which was the main portal page. To my surprise, when I opened the file on my server to see what might be wrong I found the file was blank - that was what was wrong! All the code in the file had been deleted somehow over the past 24 hours and I can assure you I did not do it.

My immediate solution was to delete the empty file and upload a new blog.php from my backup files I keep on a flash drive. I did that and all was well again - the site was up but what happened? I emailed my host server folks to ask them - they told me to e-mail the people who actually own the servers to report "abuse". What does that mean? Did someone hack into the file or is someone within the company up to no good? Why would they bother with my site? Maybe they are Obama lovers and don't like my comments? I hope I get an answer but frankly I don't expect one.

My much sought after opinion has polling groups always calling for me to express my sage and correct thoughts on a variety of matters. The latest is the well known broadcast polling group known as Arbitron. It's the ratings produced by Arbitron which among other things tells radio and TV stations how much they can charge advertisers based on the popularity of programming. I have a booklet in which I've agreed to keep a record of the radio stations I listen to and the times I listen to them. frankly, I can almost fill the booklet out now because for the most part I listen to the same stations and same times every weekday. It's WTTB from 7:20 to 7:30, WTTB from 8:30 to 8:40, and Waxe from noon to 3. On the way to and from coffee in the morning then Rush's program every afternoon. I listen at other times when I'm in my car but never at home except for Rush. But, I'll play by the rules and really file it in as the week goes by.

I've been thinking about disconnecting all my computer equipment then reconnecting after I move things around - there is a rat's nest of wires around my desk which interferes with my need for neat & orderly. I have several things I want to test including my 4 computer KVM switch and the combining of a 5 port wired router with a wireless router as one of the ports used. Why you ask? I'm just curious that's why.

I can't leave you today without my view on Obama's "Job Summit" to be held today in Washington. Boys and girls, Obama doesn't have a clue because he and 90% of his cabinet and advisors have never worked in the private sector so what will they know about creating jobs except more government jobs? Today's summit is nothing more than a photo-op to make uninformed Americans think he really cares. I've come to this correct conclusion by looking at who's invited to this summit. The invitees include union heads, non-profit organizations, and a few CEO types from big business - I bet GE will be at the table and maybe Google too. What's missing are representatives from small business where 75% of all non-government jobs are created - not invited are the Chamber of Commerce which represents over 3000 US businesses, the National Federation Of Independent Business, or any other private sector business organizations. Why invite union heads - what jobs are created by unions? Then there are non-profits - does anyone out there really believe non-profit organizations are the key to solving unemployment? The business heads invited that actually hire people are Obama myrmidons. Are you folks getting the picture - Obama either doesn't have a clue or doesn't really care.

Posted at 07:56 am in General | Comments (0)

Obama's Speech

Wed 02 December 2009

I'm back from coffee but I need to go out again this morning before the rain comes later today - Vero should get rain in the next 24 hours. The rain will be a test to see if I fixed my uncles weather station yesterday. Of course there is no problem for me to drive in the rain it's just that I got my car washed yesterday thus I'd like to keep it clean for at least a few days.

I want to look at Christmas type plants which may appeal to me for my house. I've already got a poinsettia for my office but I now need something for the open area around my kitchen - living room. Whatever I may find, I'd like to thing it will live through Christmas so already cut arrangements are out for now. While at the mall I want to pick up a couple things at Bed, Bath, Beyond, and Expensive. I think I may start using soap when I shower every Saturday so I need a soap holder for my shower.

Yesterday TB took the Florida Cracker in for service and a detailing job. I was his taxi service between the marina and his river estate. The last boat he had he kept tuned & fixed which is why it lasted so long. Just how long was that? 25 years? 30 years? I don't remember but I can say it was a long time. I'm sure this boat will last as long as he wants to keep it unless there is an accident. I feel the same way about my car - it will last as long as I continue to maintain it as long as there's not an accident.

I watched some of Obama's speech last night which for me and many commentators seemed academic in his delivery - he talked like he was giving a college lecture with no real sense of feeling or worse, no real commitment. He says he's send more troops but only for 18 months then he'll bring them home. How would you feel if a son, daughter, father, mother, sister or brother were killed in the next 18 months then Obama quits? If you are the bad guys, wouldn't you just wait it out until Obama leaves? I believe Obama is probably a good academic but he's a very poor leader without a clue. He's unwilling to make tough decisions as was obvious in the 3 months it took for him to decide if he wanted to follow the advice of his general. How do you think his weakness looks to others around the World? If you are on our side wouldn't you want to know the US is all in and committed? I will add that I'm glad he's at least doing some of what his generals requested.

In the Wall Street Journal, a commentator pointed out that Obama has had more prime time TV speeches in his first 9 months than President Bush had in his 8 years. The more you see him the less impact his speeches will have because it will seem routine. This same commentator pointed out some interesting but scary facts. A study was done as to how many 'private sector individuals" were in the administration of our presidents over the past 100 years. In other words, how many cabinet members or advisors to the president have had "real world" experience and did not come out of the academic world or another government job. Eisenhower had the highest percentage of about 70% while Carter had the lowest of about 30% that is until Obama came along. Less than 10% of Obama's cabinet and advisors come from the 'real' world and not the pointed-headed elitist world of academia or in some case another government job. Does that bother any of you? Do you see a problem here? These are the same people running General Motors and want to take over healthcare in America! We are in a world of hurt IMHO.

Posted at 10:04 am in General | Comments (0)

Fraud on My AmEx Card

Tue 01 December 2009

DAMN! It's happened again - my American Express card got compromised today. I received a call from AmEx as well as an e-mail questioning an online charge at Bed, Bath, & Beyond for about $279 and two $1 charges to an Apple store - I didn't make either one. American Express works fast in catching these things because they called me the day of the charges before I discovered them myself. As a matter of practice, I look at my American Express and Visa accounts several times a week - I do the same with my banking accounts. I'm wondering how AmEx could detect the charge was not made by me? I'll get a new card delivered to my doorstep tomorrow morning with a new account number. Now I'll have to change the card number on the various accounts I use which automatically charge to my AmEx card like The Wall Street Journal, all my domains and web servers, DirectTV, Geico, Amazon.com, Buy.com, etc. The process is time consuming but not a problem - the problem is I always miss an account or two.

The AmEx computer algorithm used to detected such fraudulent activity must be very complex - this is the third time American Express has called me. There have been occasions on which I called them when I found charges that were not mine like to Hungarian Airlines a few years back. Every time I get the charges reversed or cancelled but I wonder how the bad guys got my card number in the first place. My card never leaves my position or it stays within my line of site like in a restaurant. I don't get AmEx bills by mail anymore - they come via my internet account. I only charge on legitimate secure sites and I can't remember the last time I read my card to a sales person. I've had an AmEx account since 1972 and it's only in the past 4 years or so that this sort of fraud has occurred.

This morning I went out to my uncle's house to see if I could reset his weather station - it does not detect rain as it should. I went through a reset sequence so we'll see if it worked the next time it rains which should be this week. This is my favorite uncle but when I visit I know I'm caught for a couple hours - the man likes to talk. Most of the time he's not boring so it's ok as long as I'm not trying to get other things done in the same time period. He has a way of starting to talk about "A" then ends up at "Z" having covered a lot in between. I certain don't mind - he lives alone so having someone to visit is something he likes. It is the least I can do because of all the wonderful things he did for my Dad while I was in Atlanta.

It's almost noon so I'll get a sandwich then turn on Russ Limbaugh's radio program lasting the next three hours. I listen most but not all of the time usually while doing other things as well.

Posted at 12:42 pm in General | Comments (0)

Busy Monday

Mon 30 November 2009

I've been busy all morning which is 'normal' for my Mondays. There was coffee then off to Publix to buy things including more coffee for my coffee klatch. Then to the car wash, post office, and bank - I wanted to get some of those $100 bill samples they were giving away. When I got back to Mia Casa, I found Matt called about his Grandmothers's computer so we spent time on the phone trying to figure out why here D drive (DVD drive) would not work and never has worked on this new computer. After awhile we concluded the best thing will be to call Dell - it is a new machine. If needed, I'll go out to their house and talk with Dell service while sitting in front of the computer - I will need to be able to insert a CD.

Captain Matt said they had a mixed fishing day yesterday catching a few dolphins but no sailfish. Matt said they had strikes which could have been a billfish but you never know unless you see the creature. Most of the dolphin were under 5 pounds but they did get a bigger one although 30% of the fish was gone by the time they got it to the boat - a shark had a nibble. Oh, well.

This morning I hooked up my new DOCSIS 3.0 modem with the hope of getting faster speeds. The initial results suggest to me there's really not much difference but then the jury is still out. It will be able to take advantage of new things when online but my major reason for getting it was speed. I'll have a better idea over the next few days and will report again.

I watched another movie - The International. It was a good movie with Clive Owen and Naomi Watts fighting international bankers and arms dealers. It kept my attention through out the movie with a good balance of suspense and mystery. It was on a premium satellite network call Stars - I did not rent it online but I might get a movie later today.

It's time to have lunch as I do once a week on Monday's. Nothing else to report right now and besides, I am hungry.

Posted at 12:57 pm in General | Comments (0)

Good News - Bad News

Sun 29 November 2009

I've got good news and bad news - which do you want first? The bad news is that Georgia Tech lost to Georgia last night 30 -24. I could give you all the reasons why but the bottom line is Georgia had more points when the game ended. The next outing for Tech will be the ACC play-off against Clemson - I think next Saturday. If the Yellow Jackets can stay healthy and if they don't make mistakes, they could when the game. Unfortunately that's a lot of "if's" which could be said about last night's game. Nonetheless, I am happy with Georgia Tech's season and as I said in the beginning, the Jackets will lose some games. In fact, their record was better than I hoped for back in September. I can't believe the regular college season is over.

The good news is John & I went shopping for a blue blazer and things could not have gone better. We had not trouble parking at the mall, there were no long lines, and we found the perfect blazer in the first store we looked - Macy's. The Barnes boys independent of each other said that was the place to look - they have the widest selection which we found to be true. There were probably a half dozen blue blazers from which to choose - John and I both agreed the Ralph Lauren jacket looked the best (see image - that's not John by the way). The good news continues ...they had a blazer in John's size of 46 long which I thought might be hard to find. In fact, I think the only 46 long was the Lauren blazer which we liked the best anyway. Here comes the real bonus - not only did it look good, fit well, but it was on sale too! I almost never ever find items I actually go to find on sale. The shopping trip was over in less than a hour so we went to the beach to have lunch amongst the tourists and snowbirds.

I spent the afternoon watching football games and messing with John's computer - I reinstalled Office 2007 which got whipped out when I reinstalled Vista a few months ago. I learn something every time I mess with a computer and this time was no exception. When I went to install Office, the installer game me options I'd not seen before and did not ask for the license key. I think I discovered that licensing information is not deleted when you reinstall the operating system although the programs were. Something new for me.

Tommy, Drew, and Matt when fishing early this morning and they invited me. I knew I would be up late watching the Tech game so while I was happy to be invited, I decided to recover from the late night TV watching. My hope is they have good luck even without me - the last time I went, Matt & Drew caught a sailfish. Reports tomorrow.

Today I have an all day "Monk" marathon I can watch, some computer things to do, and I might just rent another movie.

Posted at 10:07 am in General | Comments (0)

Shopping & Football

Sat 28 November 2009

Yesterday was one of those fabulous days we get in Vero this time of the year. There was not a cloud in the blue-blue sky, the temperature was in the lower 60's , and the humidity was low as well - I love those kind of days. It is about time to cool down - we've had above normal temperatures in part of this Fall. Could it be global warming? Not! Just the expected changes this planet experiences all of the time.

I didn't get out much yesterday but that didn't stop me from enjoying the day. I decided to get a movie to watch so I went online to Amazon to look at their huge selection. I stumbled across a move called "Gran Torino" which was produced & directed by Clinton Eastwood who by the way was the lead character in the movie. I've yet to find an Eastwood movie I did not like so I rented it online then watched it on my big TV using my laptop to stream the video file. Damn things sure are simple if you want to rent a movie without going to the video store. The movie did not disappoint me but it also was not his best. Certainly worth the view.

What day is it boys and girls? Why it's college football Saturday and the last football Saturday for many colleges around the country including Georgia Tech. Just damn! The Yellow Jackets don't start their game with Georgia until 8 pm tonight - I don't like night games but you know I'll have to watch it unless it looks real bad for Georgia Tech which means I'll go to another channel. I've not checked the betting lines on this game because I just don't want to know. Besides, you never know what will happen in this annual game no matter what the experts say.

In about a hour, I'm going to fetch John so we can head to the mall in hunt for a blue blazer. I asked the Barnes boys where they would go in Vero and they all independently said either Macy's or Dillard's in Vero's mall - the 'beach' shops are more for older farts like their dad. Of course I went online to check out what each store carries finding Macy's has the better selection at least online. You never know until you actually shop - something I almost never ever do - in store to look at choices and try them on. I buy a lot of stuff - when I buy anything at all - from Lands End, J. Crew, or LL Bean - once you know their products, size variations, and quality this option is best for me. However, I don't object to going shopping with others as look as I'm not on the hunt and getting agitated - seems to me I've gone shopping with Syp every year he's visited.

Another thing about shopping - when buying for someone else, I never know what they may or may not like. My trick with Syp was to go shopping when he was looking and then go back to buy what he really liked but did not buy for himself. Wendy and Starr often reveal what they like without going shopping although I think women just love getting gifts no matter what they are! Sometimes I'll buy a gift for someone else that is something I really like without knowing they would like it as well - besides, how could it be possible someone would not like what I like? They must be defective!

After shopping I've got a whole heck of a lot of college games to watch this afternoon before Tech's game tonight. I might to pick up some hot wings to go with my peanuts then park myself in front of my TV. I might even rent another movie online if by some remote chance I can't find a game I want to watch - can that actually happen?

Posted at 09:50 am in General | Comments (0)

Thanksgiving Dinner

Fri 27 November 2009

Yesterday was a rather quite day for me until about mid-afternoon when I I went over the river and through the woods to the Barnes River Estate to join the festive Thanksgiving dinner events. The young Barnes boys - Ty, Drew, and Matt - were all in town for this holiday weekend and were tapped for kitchen duty which they performed very well I must say. Kathryn purchased a whole pig which was slowly roasted to a tender, juicy perfection on Tommy's smoker called an Egg. Of course the pig would have been plenty but that would not suit Kathryn so she had a turkey as well.

Kathryn is a fabulous cook and really likes to put a wonderful meal together - yesterday was no except. The dinner was wonderful reminding me of that family dinners I had as a kid growing up. You know...sweet potato casserole, stuffing, and collard greens to mention just a few. I've come to expect a culinary delight from Kathryn and a meal prepared large enough to feed a platoon - she always cooks much more than is ever consumed in one sitting but the good news is Tommy loves left food and I get to bring home a doggy bag for me. I'm so brazen that I've bring my own Tupperware knowing there will be plenty of food and that I'll be offered whatever I wanted to take home - I've got at least two if not three meals in my refrigerator from Kathryn's cooking.

It was fun being with the Barnes clan which gave me an opportunity to find out what is going on with Ty, Drew, and Matt - they are all well and they all have jobs. Unfortunately they'll all be gone by Monday but will return for the Christmas holidays. Actually, it's a good thing they are working so as to contribute to social security which will fund my existence in the future. Do you believe I'll be old enough to get early social security next April? Jeez! When I was actually working for a living I thought folks on social security were really old - now I come to find out that indeed we are old! Funny how that works, huh? I do want to promise all you young social security tax contributors that I intend to collect for a long time - I might still be collecting when you are eligible to start collecting SS if there is anything left by then.

John is in town from college for this weekend - he came by for a visit on Wednesday. He brought me a cool FSU hat which I like and will wear until my beloved Yellow Jackets play the Seminoles at which point I have to put on a GT hat. John is doing well in all sections of his like - he seems to really love college as he should IMHO. His grades are good (so he says), his job is going well, he is active all the time, and he has discovered there are thousands of attractive, intelligent, hot girls his age on a college campus just waiting his call. That's one thing I missed in college - at Georgia Tech in the years I went to school there were less than 100 females in school with a student body of 4,000. To make matter worse, some of the girls had to ware a sign around their neck saying "Female" otherwise you may not know! Today the campus is 40% female and you can tell without the sign.

Joh does not have a blue blazer - how can a young college guy get by without a blue blazer? As far as that goes, how can any guy from the preppie South get by without a blue blazer and khaki pants? If Johnny has time to fit me into his over-booked schedule, we'll go shopping for a blue blazer tomorrow. Frankly, I think the chances are only 50 - 50 he'll have time but if not, I'm sure there are plenty of fine men's shops in Tallahassee where he can go. I explained to John that when you come home from college for Thanksgiving you'll have more things to do and people to see than at just about any other time in your life. I bet he's finding that out today.

Posted at 10:43 am in General | Comments (3)

Thanksgiving Day

Thu 26 November 2009

Posted at 08:53 am in General | Comments (0)

Liberal Hate

Wed 25 November 2009

Why are liberals so angry all the time? That is a question to which I have no answer - can you even imagine me not having an answer to anything? Jeez! I say that liberals are angry all the time because that's the way they come across to me on TV when interviewed. There are Democrats that seem 'normal' to me - calm, collected, measured, and polite but not so with the liberals in the democrat party especially the "leaders" like Pelosi, Reid, Frank, etc. Then there are the Maxine Waters of the world as well.

You see, what I don't understand is they won. Their party is in charge. They have the House, the Senate, and the White House which should make them happy yet they come across with hate and anger all the time. This of course extends to the really liberal whack-o non-elected but self-appointed spokespersons for liberals - I'm thinking about the entertainer types in particular. Why is it that Hollywood actors deem themselves experts on everything and look down upon us common folk as if we're all ignorant surfs in their kingdom?

One thing I've noticed time and time again is liberals don't like logic or the truth - they know they know their view is the correct view and will adjust the facts to fit their view throwing truth and logic to the wind. Follow me on this one - the next time you see a liberal on TV being interviewed or on a panel, please notice that rather than answer questions, they just interrupt others, talk or shout loudly, and claim us common folk are just to damn dumb. You will see they always interrupt others and talk over them in an effort to drown out the truth or even permit another view which, if different than their view, is wrong.

I've observed what I've said here for a long time but it became focused in my mind after the liberals took control of everything and now they want to control our lives the latest example is this healthcare takeover. A good example of the liberal arrogant hate was front and center yesterday afternoon when I was watching Stuart Varney interview - or try to interview - actor Ed Beckley,Jr on FOX News about the global warming hoax. Beckley yelled, pointed his finger, leaded out of his chair to shout Varney down but never ever addressed the question about the document discoveries - he just knew he was right and wanted nothing to do with this little minor thing called facts! I've come to the undeniable conclusion that facts are the enemy of liberals.

I think I'll stop my rant now - more come in the future.

Posted at 09:26 am in General | Comments (0)

Global Warming Hoax

Tue 24 November 2009

Today is more or less like most days for me when I take things as they come. There are no chores or things I need to do like there usually is on Mondays. So I went for coffee and now I've been back at the house reading news releases online and specifically, The Drudge Report - I like this constantly updating site for the news they post and the manor in which it is posted. They do not write the news but instead post links to various news outlets.

I first heard about this over the weekend but Rush also talked about it on his daily radio show. For years, Rush and others have said this global warm bullsh*t Al Gore and the liberal left have been promoting is a hoax. It's a myth. Global warming does not exist. No how's that for an "inconvenient truth" to AlGore? His book is a basically a lie and global warming has been exposed as a HOAX through the activities of some hackers who broke into the computers at the University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit (aka Hadley CRU) and released 61 megabites of confidential files onto the internet - see story . This has been dubbed "Climategate" by US Senator Inhofe and labeled 'Greatest scandal in modern science'...

You see boys and girls, the hackers got 1079 emails and 72 documents revealing the cover-up by "qualified scientists and professors" to keep the truth from coming out which totally debunks global warming - in fact, the earth is cooling. Senator Inhofe wants an investigation as to how and why the corrupt liberal scientific community would do such a thing. Heck, I know the answer without n investigation - follow the money trail. I'd bet the farm that huge grants and economic support came from those who would profit if there really might be global warming. Can you say General Electric and Al Gore? I also think there are left-wing nut cases who believe mankind is evil and is destroying the planet even if it's not true. I wonder what Obama's "Green czar" things about this? Oh, I know, it's a right wing conspiracy made up be evil conservatives.

I thought all along this global warming was an intentional scare by the cooks on the left to further their own agenda. My belief is based on my superior understanding of all things!! Follow me on this - if the planet earth is 5,000,000,000 years old and has gone through many climate changes during that time including ice ages and the big meteor that wiped out the big lizards 160 million years ago then how can 50 or 60 years of data lead to the conclusion there is man-made global warming? Another thing, measurements are certainly not all accurate and all the measurements were taken on land. I don't know if you noticed but the planet is 75% water without temperature data.

I simply have to laugh at the left getting caught in yet another of their self-serving lies. Liberals use the mushroom theory - keep us in the dark and feed us sh*t. I'll look with great glee as to how this plays out.

One other glimmer of hope I'd like to share - Obama's numbers are dropping like a rock.
RASMUSSEN: Obama Poll Drops to New Low: -15
Strongly Approve 27%
Strongly Disapprove 42%
Total Approval 45%

Posted at 11:17 am in General | Comments (0)


Mon 23 November 2009

I've been busy all day so this is the first time I've had a chance to post here today. As usual, I started my day with coffee then came back here to call my Dentist's office. I've had an irritation on the roof of my mouth that's been hurting especially when I consume salt - I live salty things especially peanuts. I was able to go right over to his office without a wait - now that's service. This 'hurt' has been bothering me since last week but did seem to be getting better. Nonetheless, if I have an anomaly on my hot bod which lasts more than a few days I always have it checked out. My dentist conclude it was 'trauma' likely caused by burning my mouth or jamming something into it. I do recall having scorched my mouth with hot wings last week so that is likely the culprit. Usually I get better sooner so that's what had me concerned.

I also have a bleeding event between my last two teeth on my upper right side. He said there was a space between these teeth allowing food to get in there and agitate the gum. In particular, I think it is bits of peanuts that get in there irritating the area. Even thought I do brush my teeth every Saturday, I still get the problem. He said if this is anything other than a rare event, he will fix the gap so as to avoid the problem in the future. The end result is I left his office feeling confident things are basically ok.

Next it was a stop at Publix to pick up stuff for the week including 10 cans of coffee fort my coffee klatch. When I find coffee on sale, I buy some - $6 per can is better than $10. Oh, I also got Sally Cat a fresh lemon pepper chicken which I tested for her by having a chicken sandwich for lunch. I really think Publix does the best job on cooked chicken.

When I got back to the house, my house keepers were here so I decided to leave to complete some other chores. First I had a call from Starr who sounded terrible - she has a sinus-head infection thing going on so when I went to Wally World, I bought her some Zertec D then dropped it at her house on the way home. She's had this infection thing for over a week and it's not getting better. I think she needs to rest by getting in bed and staying there for a few days. But of course she's a Mom with that drive to go do things for Alex and John. Those boys are big enough to do things for themselves so Starr can rest. I'm sure they would but Starr does ask them because she wants to do it. You Moms out there probably understand better than us guys, even Dads like Syp.

I get a daily e-mail about electronic/computer stuff on sale. I found a 5ooMB external hard drive for $39 so I decided to look into it - that's a great price. I couldn't find the deal at Office Max but I did stumble across the "Motorola SB6120 SURFboard DOCSIS 3.0 eXtreme Broadband Cable Modem". Extreme? That must be good so I looked into it which took a couple of hours of research. I discovered the news technology in internet speed is called DOCSIS 3.0 - most systems are using DOCSIS 2.0. Motorola claims this modem can be 4 times fast than their earlier modem and it has "channels" which allows layering for other services like video, VOIP, etc. Well, given the fact I like this sort of stuff and that I spend a good bit of time online, I decided to order one from Amazon.com. They are not cheap - they are too new to get much in the way of discounts but nonetheless I decided to give it a go. I read reviews from customers who purchased the device and they were all very good ( reviews here ). Customer ratings ware great with many reporting significant speed increases. I called Comcast to confirm the DOCSIS 3.0 was in Vero - it is. The technician at Comcast said I would get improved speeds at no additional cost from the cable company. I shall know it about a week.

Posted at 03:27 pm in General | Comments (0)

Icky Saturday

Sun 22 November 2009

Yesterday I didn't feel very good must of the day. I didn't feel sick per se I just had the blahs, was tired, and didn't want to do anything. Yes I took my meds in the morning but I still felt icky. So, what is one to do? For me, I watched several football games clicking back and forty between channels then I watched two movies.

The best game I think for me was Notre Dame verses the University of Connecticut - the Irish were favored to win in their home stadium as this was the last home game of the year for them. Connecticut kept it close and should have won during regular play but got a bad holding call which negated a touchdown. In double overtime, UCon did beat Notre Damn in the biggest win in Ucon history. It was an emotional game on both sides for different reasons and the emotions showed. It now is almost a certainty Coach Weiss is gone at the end of the year fueling more rumors about Florida's coach going to Notre Damn next year - we'll know in a few weeks I would guess.

In other games, I like Mississippi's win over LSU which was a major upsets - I like to root for the underdog a lot of the time. The Oregon - Arizona game was good because the scoring went back and forth with Oregon winning 44 - 41. Clemson beat Virginia so does that mean Georgia Tech will play them again for the ACC championship? I think it does mean that but I'm not sure just yet. In a late game, Kentucky beat Georgia in Athens 34 - 27 which may mean Georgia must beat Georgia Tech next week to be "bowl eligible". I hate to say this but Georgia has a way of upsetting Georgia Tech when Tech is favored as I'm sure they will be. I'll be a wreck during the game next week.

I watched two movies - "Eagle Eye" and "The Day the Earth Stood Still". Eagle Eye was non-stop action with a good plot and lots of special effects. They wrecked more cars in that movie than I could count. The second movie was a real dud in my opinion - it was boring. The first make of the movie 44 years ago was great - I watched it at Tommy's original home one Saturday night while our parents were having a cooking - party event. I think Mary Ann was there too but I.m not positive about that. So I got a good movie and a bad movie - maybe today will be better.

I've got some things I need to do like going to Publix & Wal-Mart but I think I may wait until tomorrow morning. My house keeping people will be here tomorrow and I like being out of the house while they do their thing. It's noisy around here and I just seem to get in the way. I guess Sally Cat will have to do without Publix lemon pepper chicken until tomorrow.

Posted at 10:16 am in General | Comments (0)

I Was Sick

Fri 20 November 2009

This morning I'm recovering from a two day illness event which has kept me down. On Wednesday morning I had a headache that grew into a major event as the day went on requiring my strongest pain medication which, by the way, did not work all that well. When the Vicodin doesn't work I know I'm in deep do-do. Upon awaking yesterday morning I felt so-so but went for coffee anyway only to leave about 30 minutes into our meeting. I was beginning to feel a bit nauseated and the headaches got worse. By early afternoon the pain meds were not working and indeed I had to vomit several times during the afternoon until there was nothing left in my stomach.

I've had this type of sickness event several times in the past - this time acted just like the other times. Fortunately, I had some prescription anti-nausea suppositories in my refrigerator so late yesterday I stuck one in an orifice where the sun doesn't shine. I've never figured out how you are suppose to get better tasking medication by mouth when you vomit it up as soon as you take it. The suppositories work great, I mean really great. About 8pm last evening I was able to eat a raisin cinnamon bagel and drunk some milk. The worse of all this was I had terrible headaches and could not keep pain medication down long enough to work. I think I need a hydrocodone suppository - I wonder if it's available? A morphine drip would work nicely as well.

I slept until about 8am this morning which is about 4 hours longer than usual - no coffee for me today. I'm feeling much better without headaches or nausea at all. I had cereal with an oatmeal cookie for breakfast. I'm on the way to recovery.

This sickness I just described is not unusual for me - it happens once or twice a year. It's always the same with the symptoms and with the length of time I have it...48 hours. I have no cold-like symptoms nor do I think it's a flu event - I have flu shots and besides, flu last longer. It is associated with those bad headaches I get every once and awhile but on occasion it gets worse. Oh well, at least I'm better today and headed for a laid-back TV

On Wednesday I got a call from Syp while he was driving home from Amsterdam - it was about 10pm his time which means he was working late. Funny thing is that Syp, Mike, and some of rest of you like to take me along when you're on the road somewhere - I like to go along for the ride so keep it up. Syp reported he needs 30 hours in each day to do what needs to be done. Djem & Yari are full-time jobs but Syp already has a full-time job. Syp, Sjak, Yari & Djem are all doing well. I was promised some new pictures of the boys so I'll post them when I get them.

Got a letter from Brother Drew this morning telling me UGA VII died. Actually I feel for the fans who lost what is a great symbol to them. When pets died it's a sad time.

Posted at 10:22 am in General | Comments (0)

Holidays Approaching

Wed 18 November 2009

Each time I try my grill I learn something and I like the results. I'm still trying to get the timing down because it cooks so quick. A nice steak takes only 3 minute - 3 1/2 minutes cooks it too much. Plus, I have to remember meat continues to cook after it's taken off the grill. With this device, steaks require less seasoning then would put in the broiler or onto the stove. This is a kitchen device I wish I had purchased years ago.

Did you hear the rumor? The University of Florida football coach will leave Florida for Notre Dame. As I'm tying this it is still a rumor but the newscaster on FOX said the Florida coach wanted to coach the Fighting Irish - whether that's true or not I do not know. Florida has a talented football team but even good talent needs coaching. Notre Dame's record sucks so likely their coach is gone. I sure hope Paul Johnston will stay at Georgia Tech - at least that's my opinion now.

My lawn guy came yesterday spending 2 1/2 hours working on my lawn. He trimmed everything, edged everything, and mowed of course. This time of the year he only comes every two weeks which is fine with me. He did a Fall trimming so nothing much will be needed until next Spring. I went out and took today's image around 10:30 this morning.

For some reason it doesn't seem like the holidays are approaching which I believe in part it's because it's still warm here. When the holidays approached the last 43 years in Atlanta it was always cool if not down right cold. I've not noticed as much in the way of decorations as I remember but then again Atlanta does decorations very well. I do see stuff in stores and people talking about the holidays. One thing that does single holidays is the return of the college guys or young working adults.

Posted at 11:34 am in General | Comments (0)

More About Justin Bieber

Tue 17 November 2009

Everytime I look at someone else's computer in an effort to help in some way I learn something. Yesterday Tom asked me about viewing a video file which would not open on his machine. I looked at the file only to discover it had an extension I'd never seen - something like .3GP. What's up with that? Well, it turns out to be a video from a cell phone of all things and of course requires a special application to run it which we found for free on the internet. So why can't cell phones use "normal" video extensions like .wmv, .avi, etc? Jeez! We got it working although the quality was rather poor.

I went out to return the Rosetta Stone files and that's when Tom asked about the video file. While there, I also installed AVG Security Suite on his and Mary Ann's computer. Then I was in for another surprise - I used the same installer for both machines running Vista but AVG installed a bit different on Mary Ann's machine compared to Tom's. What's up with that? why would it not install exactly the same way? The difference was in the prompts you getting during and just after installation. I still don't have a clue.

Remember the Justin Bieber kid I mentioned yesterday? Well, later in the day he was mentioned on FOX News as a hot new teenage singing sensation. I come to find out he has over 60 videos on YouTube but only the most recent ones were professional produced. I found myself looking at several videOS only to discover the kid has an album out now. Just in case you want to look at a few videos... video one video two video three - you'll have to find the others by yourself.

Now permit me to be a bit cynical about the success of young Justin - I wonder just how much of the success this talented young guy should have taken away from him and distributed to others not so talented? Isn't that the Obama way? Take from those who make something of themselves through pure talent or hard work and give it to others who don't choose to work or have no God-given talent is wrong in my opinion but of course you know that by now. The only people Obama wants to exempt are Hollywood actors, sports figures, or trial lawyers. Why do I include trial lawyers you ask? Because in Obamacare, trial lawyers who are now limited to recover losses from denied services can add "pain & suffering" as well under Obamacare. Many people - including me - think it's law suites that are part of the rising cost of health care in the first place and now Obama wants to open the floodgates even wider? Jeez!

Got a call from Johnnyson just to bring me up to date. He says he's doing well in school and he really seems to like his job - like is good for him up there in Tallahassee. Now the question is where he'll be going to school next session - I'm hoping it will be FSU but the jury is still out on that. If not next session then the Summer session for sure - but what about paradise next Summer? Too far away to tell at this point. He will be in Vero next week for Thanksgiving - I think he comes in on Wednesday but at what time I know not. Thank God someone will be here to help with my Crown before it goes bad!!

Posted at 10:04 am in General | Comments (0)


Mon 16 November 2009

The past couple of days I've had a terrible toothache or gum ache which I treated with Anbesol (a numbing agent). Yesterday I took my water pick to the area that hurt which resulted in a good bit of bleeding. The last time this happened I had a missing filling which is what I expected again this time since the hurt was going on for two days. This morning I have almost no pain at all suggesting it is not a missing filling but something else. My guess is I got something caught between my teeth which irritated my gum and may even have gotten under my gum next to my teeth like back in 1972 when a popcorn kernel got caught in a similar fashion. Now I think that whatever was causing it was expelled by my water pick yesterday but it will take another day to know for sure.

Every once in awhile I hear about a YouTube hit which was the case this morning. On the radio they were talking about Justin Beaver (or Bieber) who's now only 15 but started to put videos of himself on YouTube when he was 11. What makes this interesting is he was "discovered" by Usher and now has cut a real music video which you can find here . There you will find links to other home made videos going back for years. The kid has a future...he's cute, talented, and now discovered.

Yesterday I did install Rosetta Stone from the CD Tom brought to me on one of my computers - the back-up Optimax. To my surprise it installed and never asked for a license key. This is the old 2.0 version but even so I would expect a licensing requirement which once again leads me to believe this is a pirated version of some nature. What I don't like about this version is it will not allow you to download the language libraries but instead requires a CD to be put in every time you want to use it - the 3.0 version Wendy has does allow language downloads. So I copied the language file from the disk to my computer then copied that to a new CD - it did not work. So I tried copying directly from one CD to another which did work for the first 2 CD's but now the 3rd one. There is a error in copying the third CD but no worries, I'm sure I can get it elsewhere if I ever get that far.

This morning I'm taking the CD's back to Tom and while I'm there I'll install AVG Security Suite on his laptop which now has the AVG free version. If Mary Ann wants it I'll do the same for her computer as well. I've got this program on my laptop because my Trend Micro license ran out which required buying a new one. I think AVG is a great alternative - I'll likely put it on my desktop once the Trend Micro PC-cillion expires there as well.

I've been thinking about selling my laptop then buying a new one with more speed and memory. I'm interested in trying Windows 7 out which is what got me started in the first place. Then I said to myself, "self...why not just upgrade to Windows 7?". So I started with the research resulting in mixed views about Windows 7 although the news letter I get says it's pretty cool. Apparently it is faster with more bells & whistles and easier to use than Vista. So, I thought I'd upgrade first before buying a new laptop as a test - if I like it I can then get a new laptop if I want to do so at that time. Frankly there is nothing wrong with the laptop I have except newer and faster is always better even if it's not needed.

There seems to be a variety of opinions as to the best upgrade method so I'll need to do more research before I even try. I found a place where I can buy the upgrade for only $30 - I think it is a valid copy but I don't really know. If you don't have the real thing you're likely not able to update Windows. Stay tuned.

Posted at 10:18 am in General | Comments (2)

Rosetta Stone

Sun 15 November 2009

Just a bit after 10am yesterday morning I positioned myself in my big comfortable chair in preparation of College Football Saturday. The first program on my agenda was Espy's College Football preview show for two hours and then the kick-off of Tech's game with Duke. After the first quarter of play I had flash-backs to last week's game with Vanderbilt in which Georgia tech won by 3 points in overtime. After the first quarter, Duke was leading Georgia Tech 10 - 0 but worse yet, the Yellow Jacket's defense was doing a poor job not to mention the offensive could not score. Fortunately the team turned it around starting in the 2nd quarter and ended up beating Duke 49 - 10. The record of Georgia Tech is now 10 - 1 with one game to go against Georgia. This is the best season Tech has had since 1991 no matter what happens next.

There were other good games yesterday where the score was closer which provided more excitement. The Georgia - Auburn game was close until the 4th quarter and even Florida had an early scare against South Carolina. Next week is an off week for Georgia Tech but I promise I'll be in front of the TV next Saturday morning as usual. Now I'm interested in seeing the college rankings later today or tomorrow - I think Georgia Tech might move up a position or two. Let me make this clear - I don't think Georgia Tech can keep up with the teams rated higher like Florida and Alabama so I have no illusions in that regard.

Tom and Mary Ann are back in Vero - they dropped by yesterday to deliver the CD's for this language teaching software called Rosetta Stone. The CD's do not have a license key with them so I'm not sure how this program will work until I install it for a test drive which I might do later today. Captain Matt has it installed on his computer so I called him about the license key at which point he said he didn't have one. This is expensive software so I can't imagine there not being a key unless what they have is a 'cracked' version meaning the license requirement has been passed all together. Matt said they bought this program online from a 're-seller' so it could be a pirated program of sorts just like the one I helped Wendy with last week. I'll know as soon as I try it.

The version of Rosetta Stone Tom has is 2.0 - there is a 3.0 version out which is what Wendy had. So, I got the installation file from Wendy for 3.0 although I'm not sure it will work. frankly, just going with the 2.0 version will give me enough to see if I'll really use it. Besides, I've found a way of getting the latest version and the language libraries from the software source where I got AVG Internet Suite, Windows Office 2007, and Adobe CS4. Getting these applications require work but can be done. You also have to be very careful of these programs because they may contain a virus or Trojan.

This morning I had a young couple (early 30's) come by to talk about a website for their one year old pest control company. These were friends of my lawn care guy (James) and were referred by him. It seems that James knows someone in Vero for just about any service you might seek. I spent almost two hours with them talking about their company and their growth. As you know, I'm not in the habit of building websites for people I do not know without a few but in this case my fee will be very nominal if anything at all. I'm impressed with their enthusiasm for their business so I'll get satisfaction just helping them without a finical carrot. What they want and need will be rather simple I think with probably just 4 pages. The next step is for them to get some info to me in order to get started. Looks like I'm working again!

Posted at 12:59 pm in General | Comments (0)

Yesterday's Reading

Thu 12 November 2009

Yesterday I read more than I have in a long time - you folks know I don't like to read and when I do it's usually not any longer than an article. Daily I read a few articles in the Wall Street Journal and sometimes the local Vero paper online. I also do a lot of reading online when I'm trying to learn how to do something or fix something. For some reason I spent a few hours reading this, that, and the other thing yesterday without getting bored - what's up with that? So I thought I'd bring a few pearls of wisdom to you today.

One thing I read religiously is a newsletter called Windows Secrets which I get at least twice a month and sometimes more. This newsletter is just full of valuable and concise information about Windows, programs, threats, etc. This is were I discover neat new applications and can find the real facts about which programs work the best. This newsletter and the Wall Street Journal are the only two information sources I actually pay to receive.

Then I get a security e-mail from Trend Micro once a week which outlines the latest internet threats some of which I bring to you. If something seems important I usually mention it - if you read here regularly you'll know that is not too often. For the 3rd or maybe 4th week in a row, Trend Micro has talked about a type of internet threat many of us might come across - you no longer have to go to a nefarious website to get caught. It seems the threat called KOOBFACE is back and more complex than ever before. The long and short of this Trojan is that it can plant itself on what most would think is a "safe" website like Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter. It also plants itself into news sites like The New York times and others. If you want more info, you can look at this Trend Micro article or this from PCWorld yesterday. And then there is the ongoing "fake" anti-virus or anti-malware floating around - some of us have actually gotten infected simple by going to an infected site. The site itself might be valid but it's the advertisements or images that are the nasties - find out more here . I'd have a look if I were you.

Then in the Wall Street Journal yesterday I read an article about yet more nasty provisions in Obamacare - these folks are out of control!

The nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation reported that the House version of the healthcare bill specifies that those who don't buy health insurance and do not pay the fine of about 2.5 percent of their income for failing to do so can face a penalty of up to five years in prison!

The bill describes the penalties as follows:

* Section 7203 - Misdemeanor willful failure to pay is punishable by a fine of up to $25,000 and/or imprisonment of up to one year.

* Section 7201 - Felony willful evasion is punishable by a fine of up to $250,000 and/or imprisonment of up to five years." [page 3]

That anyone should face prison for not buying health insurance is simply incredible.

And how much will the stay-out-of-jail insurance cost? The joint committee noted that "according to a recent analysis by the Congressional Budget Office, the lowest-cost family non-group plan under HR 3862 (the Pelosi bill) would cost $15,000 by 2016."

Is any of this getting your attention? Can you just imagine what's in the Bill that you don't know about and will not like? Are you willing to do something about it like call your elected representatives? We are running out of time. Be afraid, very afraid!

Posted at 09:48 am in General | Comments (1)

Honor Veterans Today

Wed 11 November 2009

Yesterday was a help others day for me and it started when I went to my cousin's house after coffee to look at his weather station. Boyd and Alice bought a weather station similar to mine but their rain sensor stopped working. Because all the other outdoor sensors work, I concluded it was the rain collector itself and specifically the tiny circuit board inside. So, I got all the serial numbers off the board then e-mailed the manufacture with a request to buy a new board. You can get a new rain sensor and collector unit for about $30 but the board itself shouldn't cost more than $0.25 to make and $5.00 to buy. My bet is they will not sell us just the board but it's worth the effort to ask.

Then I went to my Uncle's house to look at his weather station which may have the same problem. I say may because there could be another issue with his because he replaced the batteries. He would not know that you need to reset the unit after new batteries are put in so I did that - well wait for the next rain to see if that worked. He also did not know how to reset all the readings as well so I did that too. Actually, on this unit, it is not intuitive as to what you should do so he got out the instruction book - trouble is the instruction book was for a different unit. I remembered what to do from the first time I set it up with the correct manual.

When I got home late morning I noticed Wendy has called twice on Skype - I called her back. She's in Atlanta playing with her girlfriends like Wheels and Marilyn while all were staying at Linda's house. I've known all these Deltoids for years and I know some of you have as well. In the last several months Wendy has fancied herself as a junior computer guru which means she tries to help everyone she visits with respect to there computers - she means well and is helpful for the most part. I must give credit to Wendy because she has learned a lot under my expert guidance - she clearly knows a lot more that those she tries to help.

Wendy's zeal to help gets her into a place where she knows no what to do - I understand, I get in the same place with my own computer or while trying to help others. I've learned that Google is my best friend when I've got a problem and I have the time and inclination to work on things. Yesterday Wendy was trying to figure out how to install a 'pirated' version of Rosetta Stone software her friend Linda bout on the streets in Soul, South Korea while flying for Delta. The pirated CD's installed just like the real CD's but unfortunately they did not have instructions for install the 4 CD's. Google and I figured it after I unsuccessfully tried to follow what Wendy had started.

In the process of installing Rosetta Stone, I of course opened the program. This looks like a really cool program for learning another language. I just might install the Spanish library and see if I like using it - I would like to speak Spanish. It seems to me one of the Brennan boys or maybe Tom actually has this program so I'll check there first. Stay tuned.

Today is Veterans Day here in the US. I'm among those millions of Americans that honor and respect the men and women who've served in our military. It sickens me to see far left liberals try to ban the American Flag from buildings, ceremonies, and the like. If they are ashamed of America just leave. We've gotten to the point where the tail wags the dog here in the US. Why small groups of anti-Americans can dictated to the overwhelming Americans who respect the flag is beyond me.

Posted at 09:46 am in General | Comments (0)

Things Getting Worse

Mon 09 November 2009

Yesterday I purposely did not watch any of the news or Sunday talk shows but instead watched nothing but mindless entertainment on TV. I did sneak in a few documentaries but for the most part I watched fantasy. The 3 movies in "The Liberian" series were on TNT from about 2 to 8 - that is pure mindless fantasy which is just what I wanted. But this morning when I turned on TV it was back to the same old depressing news - I'm addicted to news.

Of course the first thing on the news was the House passage of the take-over of American's healthcare and freedoms by passing Obamacare. It passed by 2 votes late Saturday night with one single Looney congressman from New Orleans voting for while 46 Democrats voted against it. So now we have that evil extreme liberal hippie from San Francisco - Nancy Pelosi - hailing it passed with bipartisan vote! So if one single republican from liberal new Orleans votes yes and 46 democrats vote no then we are to believe it was bipartisan? If so, I'd say the bipartisan vote was against the bill not for the bill. Tell me, do any of you think that government should take over one sixth of the US economy while taking away your freedoms and rights with a margin of 2 votes? In a democracy the major wins even if the margin is one vote. With such an important vote one would think the majority should be more but it is not at least in the House.

This health care take-over leads me to believe the Obama Administration really doesn't care what Americans want - they just want more power and control of our lives through take-over, increased regulations, and more taxes. Who really believes the government can make better decisions about your life and your money?

The Obama thugs jammed through a "stimulus" bill that they said was needed immediately or unemployment might go above 8%. The bill was forced upon us as an "emergency" because of the Obama belief that should use a crisis to pass things that never would pass otherwise. Now we are at 10.2% unemployment which includes Americans admitting to looking for a job - how many aren't looking and just gave up? The stimulus bill was one huge pork barrel bill having very little to do with stimulus and almost nothing to do with long term growth. If I'm wrong then show me where I'm wrong.

The number one priority to Americans today is jobs followed by the wars, education, transportation with health care being about 6th on the list. Why does Obama spend time n health care takeover rather than jobs? Could it be his selfish "legacy"? Or his core socialist beliefs? I think both but that's just my opinion. If he really wanted to help Americans, he'd do things that help create jobs not increase unemployment.

Let me make an analogy. If you owned a house and wanted to add a room but government was getting ready to change the rules wouldn't you wait to see what the new rules are before you started the new room? Will the regulations about building increase the cost beyond your budget? Will the additional tax be too much for you? Will the government restrict your right to make decisions about the room beyond current restrictions? Well this is what small business - the engine that drives our economy - are facing today. What additional cost will a business have because of socialized health care? What additional taxes will be imposed? What will my energy cost go up to with the 'Cap & Tax' bill? What other Obama restriction will apply? The future is uncertain to business men and women - that's why they are not hiring. In fact, that is why unemployment goes up because businesses want to be as lean as necessary to survive under Obama's rules.

If Obama and his socialists thugs wanted to help the economy they should stop digging the hole deeper. Stop with new rules, new regulations, and new taxes. They should stop socializing the United States into the lowest common denominator. What they should do is give clarity into the future by dropping Obamacare and Cap & Tax. They should reduce the burden already on business by reducing taxes, not increasing taxes. When will sanity return ?

Posted at 10:08 am in General | Comments (1)

Too Close

Sun 08 November 2009

I'm just returning from the local hospital where I went last night to have my heart restarted after that Tech game. Jeez! The Yellow Jackets did everything they could to lose the game to a prepared Wake Forrest team - a team ready to "upset" Georgia Tech and almost did. How many times have I said the team making the most mistakes might likely lose? That was Georgia Tech last night with penalty after penalty many of which enabled Wake to score and score they did. I knew it was going to be tough when Tech was favored to win by two touchdowns - the Jackets read too much of their own press.

There came a time when I thought the team would win and that time was in overtime. Down by 3 points with 4th down and about a half a yard to go, the Yellow Jackets went for a first down instead of kicking a safe field goal to send the game into double overtime. If they didn't get the first down the game was over. I think it gave the team a lot of confidence when Tech's coach went for the win when he could have played it 'safe'. Georgia Tech did get a first down and then scored on the very next play to barely get by Wake Forrest 30 - 27. Last night the team played poorly especially on defense. But then the offense looked bad too trying to pass when everyone knows the real key to the Yellow Jackets is the triple option. Oh well, a win is a win no mater how messy.

Yesterday the liberal control House of Representatives passed the 2000+ page take-over of the health industry in America. It now has to go to the Senate but if it passes there then you'll no longer be in control of your own health care decisions - government employees will be in charge. Yea, that's just what I want is some government union member deciding what I can and can not do from what insurance I have to what doctors I see to what procedures I'm allowed. So I ask you liberals out there who are reading this just what is it you like so much about the take-over of America's heath system? Can you please give me the three top reasons on your list? I can certainly give you a half a dozen reasons why I don't like it not the least of which is the huge deficits it will generate.

It is not only my lose of freedom from making decisions with my doctor about my health care that bothers me but it's the expense and huge leap in government control. Does anyone one out there really think this plan will reduce heath costs in the years ahead? Come on, really? Can you name just one government program that has cost less than projected? I'm losing hope of keeping my freedoms and if you don't feel the same way you are either un-informed or just plain stupid!

Posted at 09:11 am in General | Comments (0)

One Fine Day

Sat 07 November 2009

Why is it that when it comes top the weekends when I don't go for coffee early in the morning I still get up early as hell - at 4:30 this morning and it's Saturday. Could it be that Sally Cat doesn't know it's the weekend and she puts her nose in my face wanting to be scratched? Or could it be that my built-in clock is stuck on early awaking and can not be rest? I've always gotten up early especially when I was working because the early bird has a better chance of finding a worm - the day is longer. Well for whatever reason, I still get up early even on weekends.

Sometimes when I'm up early on the weekends and I don't want to turn on my computers yet, I can find a good movie. That is not always the case but this morning I discovered a delightful romantic comedy staring George Clooney and Michelle Pfeiffer called "One Fine Day". So I was entertained for two hours with this movie - I generally like romantic comedies and this was no exception. For the most part I really like both actors - George Clooney is funning in most of his movies. What I don't much care for his Clooney's out in left field liberalism but he has the absolute right to be totally wrong. What gets me is why actors believe their opinion is more important than yours or mine. I appreciate actors for the skills not for their political opinions.

Yesterday one of my young buddies from the coffee group came over to - you guessed it - go for more coffee. There is a great little coffee/sandwich shop on Old Dixie which is where we go - this was not the first time. What amazes me is this guy's willingness and even interest in my extended esoteric bloviating (I'm not sure that's a word). He says he feels better after our meetings because he recognizes there's someone more out there than he is. This guy is a good kid that has gotten off a good path but has the ability to get back on the path - he tells me I'm helpful to him in that regard. I get a lot out of our coffee meetings as well. What continues to surprise me about people I run into at coffee -including this guy - is poor vocabulary. I guess I was lucky - I thought school really was a place to learn.

You know it is College Football Saturday - the Yellow Jackets play at 3:30 on ABC and ESPN. Their opponent - Wake Forrest - has a good team but all the same Georgia Tech should be able to win today's game. The problem is that the Tech team has a lot on injuries which will play a major factor in today's game. I'm still optimistic which is probably a bad thing - I'm setting myself up for a disappointment. I said early in the season Georgia Tech will lose games - the thing is there are only 3 games left in which they can lose. Will this be one of them? I certainly hope not.

This morning I need to go to the post office, to the store, and I should wash my dirty car. There is also a project on which I'm working that should take a couple hours so maybe I can wrap all this up before the noon kick-off of the game I'll watch - at this point I don't know which game. Off to do my chores.

Posted at 09:19 am in General | Comments (0)

Tuesday's Elections

Thu 05 November 2009

Some of you have been wondering what my take was on the election outcomes - I've already mentioned I was disappointed with Debra Fromang's lose. I think she got caught up in the outrage of high utility bills here in Vero although she was not elected when the decision was made which resulted in the high utility bills. The people of Vero through out the old guys then elected new guys. It is not at all clear to me the "new" guys have a clue!

The election results followed by the media this week were from Virginia, New Jersey, and New York although I also took note that Atlanta elected it's first white mayor in about 30 years - the last one I remember was Sam Marcel. Of course I was pleased to see conservative governors elected particularly in the very liberal New Jersey. As the media has reported, there was a 20% swing from last year when Obama won suggesting voters don't like the "change" Obama is forcing onto Americans. Let's see...take over of big banks, take over of the car industry, tripling of the deficit , the largest 'pork' bill ion history called a stimulus , huge tax increases via 'cap & tax', Czars everywhere, and take over of the health industry. It seems to me voters were tired of Bush and elected Obama because he was not Bush - the Obama Administration must believe the same because they keep blaming their failures on Bush. When Obama got elected, independents voted 60% for him and 40% for McCain - on Tuesday, independents voted 70% for the conservatives and 30% for the liberal even in New Jersey.

The elections give me hope that Americans are waking up and not liking what they see - this is not the change most voters thought they were getting. Americans are recognizing that Obama can read a teleprompter really well and give continuing campaign speeches but falls way short on leadership. Any "leader" that continuing blames poor results on someone else (like blaming Bush) does not demonstrate those traits I look for in a leader. A real leader will try to fix things and not blame others. Trouble is, Obama's plans are making things worse, not better. If you are in a hole, stop digging for God's sake!! Taxing more, spending more, and taking over industries is a bad thing anytime but especially bad in a down economy. The only part of our economy that's growing is Government! Tell me, just how do you actually measure that a job was "saved"?

Particularly distressing is Obama's complete failure when it comes to our military and the wars overseas. Can't this guy make a decision and why in hell does he not follow the recommendation of his generals with decades of experience and knowledge? Does Obama think he'll have a better idea or is this purely a political decision? Frankly I believe Obama doesn't give a rat's ass about the wars but cares only about himself and his political posturing. I'm fed up to here and based on Tuesday's vote outcome, I don't think I'm alone.

Posted at 09:48 am in General | Comments (0)

Lots of Stuff

Wed 04 November 2009

I've been busy and a lot has been going on since I last posted so let's get started with my pearls of wisdom and information. In no particular order....

Vero Beach had elections for City Counsel yesterday - the only person I voted for in the elections did not win..Debrah Fromang. It was amazing to me how few votes were necessary to win. There were 7 people running and the two seats were filled by the two top vote getters - one had just over 1000 votes and the other just under a 1000 votes. The total number of people who voted was likely under 2000 in a City of say 60,000 (?). When talking to T (you know who I mean - I just don't want to put his name here), he was not pleased with the outcome saying it could not have been much worse. I guess I'll see for myself over the next couple years.

While on the subject of Vero Beach, I want to report we've not had rain in several weeks until this past Sunday when more than 2.6 inches of rain fell in Vero Beach Monday, doubling a daily rainfall record set in 1982, according to officials with the National Weather Service in Melbourne. A real frog choker it was but needed. According to the paper, the 2.63 inches of rain measured Monday shattered the previous 1.28 inch daily record set in 1982. Having said that, this rain did not come anywhere near the rainfall in Atlanta back in September - wasn't it something like 8" in a day?

Kathryn has invited me to join her, Tommy, and other guests for Thanksgiving again this year. Of course I'll go knowing that not only will it be fun but you know how great Kathryn is when it comes to cooking. A real passion it is for her and I'm more than willing to be her beefeater. I'll even hold my tong when chatting with her liberal relatives unless I get attacked - best just to avoid political discussion all together.

I mentioned being Kathryn's beefeater - do you know what that means boys and girls? No, it does not having anything to do with the gin by the same name but from the dude's picture on the Beefeater bottle, you can get a hint. Many years ago in jolly old England, the royalty always had a beefeater who's purpose was to taste the King's food before the King ate it to make sure it was not poisoned - sort of like the canary in a mine...if the canary died, then there is methane gas around. Anyway, I'll be happy to test all the food just to confirm what we all know - it is great.

One of the on again - off again members of my coffee klatch whom I really don't know all that well called to ask me to lend him some $$. He said he & his wife were having issues, he was out of a job, and he needed to rent a motel room. Frankly I was not buying it but I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt so I agreed to loan $100 that quickly became $200. The issue is that he came back for more in less that 24 hours - this time $120. Politely I told him he need not come back to this well again - it has been my experience when people borrow $$ and then again soon, I never get repaid...ever! I hope I'm wrong this time but I'm not optimistic. When you're in a hole, stop digging is what I like to say - this guy continues to dig. I'll not mention where I think the money is going but I bet you all know what I think.

Posted at 10:19 am in General | Comments (0)

Tech Looked Bad

Sun 01 November 2009

I watched some very close and exciting games yesterday including the Florida State win over North Carolina State 45 - 43. The Miami - Wake Forrest game was close too 18 - 17..Miami won although the trailed the whole game until the end. Reminds me of Georgia Tech in past years - they would be ahead then lose at the end.

I expected the Georgia Tech - Vanderbilt game to be somewhat boring thinking Tech would start out ahead and then just run up the score but I was wrong! In fact, the game was tied 28 to 28 at the end of the first half. Vanderbilt pulled-off two big plays for touchdowns. In fact, it was not until the 4th quarter that I was even sure Georgia Tech would even beat Vanderbilt, a team that has a rather poor record. The touchdown Gods looked favorably on Tech as the did pull away in the 4th quarter winning 56 - 31. The game was a lot closer than the score would indicate. I thing the GT defense forgot what they were suppose to do! A win is a win even as sloppy as this win was for the Yellow Jackets. On to Wake Forrest this weekend.

It was Halloween last evening and I did get two trick or treat visitors last evening. One was a young boy with his older sister and the second was 4 teenagers with a younger brother of one of them. I had candy so that was a good thing - there's candy left for me this moring..snickers. The night was rather un-eventful as far as Halloween goes but not so with the football games.

By now I guess you know daylight savings time is over so you are to turn your clock back one hour. I heard this stupid nonsense on TV saying, "Oh, you can sleep an extra hour". Bullsh*t! My internal clock did not have a clue so instead of waking around 5 am I woke at 4 am. I can't just stay in bed because the clock changed because I did not change - when I'm up, I'm up! I wish I could just turn over and go back to sleep but there is not a snowball's chance in Hell for me.

Rush Limbaugh is going to be on FOX News Sunday this morning so I will not want to miss that - Rush rarely gives interviews. My plan for the day is to watch TV and more TV with the idea of staying away from my computer. Hopefully I'll be able to take a nice nap later today. A movie with watching will be nice too.

Kathryn's small 10" computer stopped working so I offered to help. She said it gave her a 'black screen of death' but as far as I know, there is no such thing. If your computer crashes, you get a blue screen. It would not boot but I discovered the problem and now it works ok. What happened is the battery almost died so in survival mode, it turned off the screen to save energy. When she tried to run off the AC power source it was a no-go for her. With my ohm meter I discovered a bad connection in the power supply so I think it is good to go now.

Posted at 09:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Happy Halloween

Sat 31 October 2009

I've told you folks about my new grill which I like a lot - it cooks fast, evenly, and with little fuss or mess. I've cooked burgers on it before but last evening I put a steak on it. Wow..it did a fabulous job! Cooked perfectly with those grill marks, the steak had a wonderful flavor without being dried out. I do have to be very watchful of the time because this grill cooks things very quickly - the steak took about 3.5 minutes for 'medium'. I'm most pleased with this purchase.

Georgia Tech plays Vanderbilt tonight at 7:30 pm in Nashville, Tennessee. On the FOX News channel this morning I notice a heavy rain event moving through the area but hopefully the rain will be over by game time. The field will be wet unless they covered it with tarp - Georgia Tech covers their field with tarp in an event like this. Tech is favored to win and unless they make mistakes, they will win based on what I know about both teams. Vanderbilt's offense is almost non-existent and of course you know the Yellow Jackets have an offensive that no one has really been able to stop. Plus, the defense is getting better every week. I just hope the team is not reading the press releases about being favored by 10 points.

There are other great games before tonight's game which I will of course be watching. At this point I'm not sure just which games I'll watch - it will depend on the scoring. I like high scoring games that are close like Georgia Tech's game with Florida State - 48 - 42.

It is Halloween so I've purchased some candy in case I get trick or treat kids at my door. Last year was my first year here and I expect a lot of kids...I got just one little girl that John scared with his pirate outfit. I've not got a custom this year - my natural look is scary enough. Based on last year, I don't expect may visitors. Oh, I've decided to give beer to the older guys if I get any - not! Good idea but I don't want to go to jail.

Have you heard about the movie, Paranormal Activity? It is playing in theaters now and apparently is very popular. It has none of the big Hollywood glitz but people who've seen it say it is scary. The reviews say it is more "real" because it does not have the Hollywood staging. Now here comes the zinger - on FOX News this morning they gave a report on the movie. It was made by 3 people - count them - three people so one actor was also a camera man when not acting. Hold onto your seats....the movie cost $11,500 to make and thus far has grossed $65,000,000!!!!! Holy shit batman, can you believe that? The 3 young people who made it have a rather Hugh profit margin I'd say even after promotional costs. I wonder if the Obama thugs will want to take 90% of the profits because they are too successful and have made too much? We wouldn't want citizens to be successful without punishing them for their success now would we Obama?

You folks do know the Florida - Georgia game is today, don't you? I know a lot of you are Florida fans.

Posted at 09:07 am in General | Comments (0)

Liberal Hatred

Fri 30 October 2009

I was watching the Hannity program on FOX News last night - I was stunned by what I heard. First I need to tell you that there was a studio audience all from New Jersey there being question by Shawn and Frank Lutz, a pollster. They were asked things like how many voted for Obama - answer was about 70% but remember, New Jersey is a very liberal state so you should expect that. When asked if Obama was doing a good job meeting their expectations only about 35% - 40% said yes. Thus far, I'm not surprised with what was happening.

Then the questioning continued about taxes and programs - most (probably 70%) think that the rich should be taxed a lot more to pay for social programs - still I'm not surprised. It was interesting when Hannity asked what percentage of their income should the "rich" pay in taxes, no one, I mean no one had an answer most just thought it should be more than it current is. When told that the top 1% of income earners currently pay 40% of all federal income taxes they still didn't think the "rich" pay enough. Here's were I started to get surprised because it has always been my belief that most people don't have a clue as to who pays what and if they did their opinion would be different - not with these New Jersey liberals!

The real surprise was when a couple women said it is the Government's job to take care of her and that Government should follow the Marxist belief "from whom according to their ability and to whom according to their need"! Huh? What's up with that? These women must have been filled with hate and jealousy otherwise why would they say that? I wish Shawn would have asked them if they should give up some of what they have to help those who have less. My guess is they'd not only say no, but hell no. Most people - but not all - what other people to give up more but not themselves.

For the most part the crowd was angry at Wall street especially the income of the top producers. Yet, they were not angry at "Arod" or other professional athletes for making millions or even hundreds of millions. No were they angry at the Hollywood crowd and other entertainers - it was just evil Wall Street and high paid CEO's. These two women asked, "how much do these people need"? Huh? What business is it of their's how much people need as opposed to how much they make? Marxists and Socialist like these people really scare me.

If Hannity had been on his toes, he would have explained that hardworking business men/women are the engine that keeps this country growing, not Government. And if these people did not want to succeed and grow, just where in the hell would jobs come from in the first place? If Bill Gates didn't have the burning desire to create a company and grow it, where would the tens of thousands Microsoft employees be work? The same can be said about any of these big evil corporations all of which were started by Americans with a dream. If you take more and more away from these business people, where is their incentive to grow more and hire more people if the fruits of their energy and labor is confiscated by Government?

I also wish Hannity would have asked how many had a retirement plan of some nature then follow it up with is it really your wish for employers and big companies to be taxed to death which in turn will make their retirement plans worth a lot less? I hat to say this but many of these people must be poorly educated and just down have a clue or they are filled with hate, anger, and jealousy. I say this because all of them wanted more for themselves - none wanted to give up more. I was not surprised some thought this way but rather I was surprised at the extreme bitterness, antagonism, and out right hate these people displayed.

Posted at 09:06 am in General | Comments (0)

Windows 7

Mon 26 October 2009

The schedule gods have done it again - they've scheduled the Georgia Tech - Vanderbilt game for 7:30 Saturday night. I don't like night games because they keep me up late and when they are over, it's hard to go to sleep no matter if Georgia Tech wins or loses - I' always wired after a game. However, it is more tolerable if Tech wins because at least when I do go to sleep, I'll be in a good mood and have great dreams. As of now, the game is on CSS and ESPN360 but not on regular broadcasts or ESPN. At lest I will be able to see it and I think CSS does have a HD option.

Do you know Windows 7 is now released to the public and is being installed on new shipments from computer manufactures? I would love to get a machine with Windows 7 on it just because it's the newest hottest operating system from Microsoft. The machines I have now work fine but newer is better, isn't it? Well, not always - I don't think Vista is better than XP and in fact I'd rather not use it. However the word on Windows & is good thus far based on reviews I've read. And, you know that Microsoft will stop supporting XP very soon now that Windows 7 is out.

I've been looking at new machines for Windows 7 rather than upgrading one of my present machines. Of course I'd want to try the latest improvements in processors which apparently is Intel CoreTM i5 processors or Intel CoreTM i7 processors. The Intel Core 2 Quad Q8300 is also fast and might even be more practicable for me. You see, even though there are faster processors capable of multi-tasking, I'm not sure I use my computer in a fashion where by the extra power and speed would be noticeable. Rarely do I do several things at one time requiring a lot of muscle - the Adobe programs are probably the most demanding. For now I'll do nothing. I'll wait for a buying opportunity as I'm sure they will come along.

Part of Saturday and all of yesterday I had one of my headache events. The good news is I had meds to help me through it and now today all is back to normal. I don't have a clue what causes these events but then people with migraines don't know what causes them either. At least they are treatable.

Over night I sleep longer than I have in a long time - in fact I can't remember the last time I got 9 1/2 hours of sleep. In part, I think the medication I was taking for my headache made me drowsy but that's not the total; reason in my opinion. Yesterday was rather a mind-numb day in that I wasn't working on a project but just watching TV. Plus I did not take an stimulants during the day in part because of the headaches. Today I feel fine.

I've been talking tom Wendy a lot over the past several days - she's in the US making her rounds. I thought I'd post here picture so you can remember who she is.

Posted at 09:38 am in General | Comments (0)

Yellow Jackets are Convincing

Sun 25 October 2009

Of course I'm most pleased this morning with Georgia Tech's win over Virginia, a team they've not beaten at Virginia for over 10 years I believe. It's not just the win that I'm happy about but also the belief I know have that the Georgia Tech offense can score against anybody and in the process control the ball for a great part of the game. Also, the defense has gotten better each week as teams Tech plays score less and less against them. In the beginning of the season, it was the team that scored last that won because the games were so close. Not anymore - Georgia Tech is beginning to really be the team to beat in the ACC. What can I say...the offense is awesome!

Funny thing, I found the Georgia Tech game to be less interesting to me then other games because of Tech's dominance. In fact, if it were not "my team", I probably would not have watched the whole game. The Clemson - Miami and Tennessee - Alabama games were much more interesting. BTW, Miami lost against Clemson and that is a good thing. I noticed how the top rated teams in the country - Florida & Alabama - struggled to win their games but win the did none the less. Too bad the Tennessee field goal got blocked or Alabama would have lost. But that's not what happened. Each week the games get more interesting not only because of the play but the impact on standings.

I found a new TV series I like - it debuted on the USA network Friday night at 10 pm - past my bedtime but I watched none the less. The series has a great concept and the characters are very likeable. Of course it has mystery mixed with humor similar to Burn Notice. Know that the Monk series is going to end, at least I like the new series coming in. I still wonder why such a popular show as Monk is ending - I'm thinking it must be $$$.

The PC-Cillon antivirus software on my laptop was to expire next month which means another annual payment. I like PC-Cillon except the version on my laptop does not have a firewall like the one on my desktop. So, I decide to install AVG Internet Security Suite 10 - this is the latest release of the same program I put on John's and Lina's computer. AVG is easy to use and effective against most nasty things crawling around the internet. This version 10 was just released but I of course found it at my usually program source for commercial software "on the cheap' sort of speak.

The set-up went well and the license key I used worked so I was good to go so I did a scan. Unfortunately during the scan I got a "warning" from the bowels of my computer causing it to reboot. This is not the same thing as a crash or BSOD - it is one step before crashing. I tried the scan again which yielded the same results. Normally such warnings are caused by incompatible drivers which suggests to me I need to update some drivers. But here is the funny thing - this has happened before and as best I can remember it was after I installed Adobe CS 4 while in Islamorada this past Summer. The think the warning came from the same source but I won't know unless it happens again.

Rather than get all bothered, I ran a scan in the safe mode without a glitch and then scanned individual files while booted in the normal mode - still no problems. I have not tried a complete scan in the normal boot mode again so I'll be interested to see what happens and if I get a warning again, I'll write down the info.

Does anyone believe as I do that the government is over-reacting to the H1N1 virus? It is bad of course but not as bad as the regular seasonal virus. So why all the fuss about this being so dangerous when in fact it is not? I think the Obama Administration wants another 'crisis' in order to seize more control of our lives. I would not think this way if the White House chief of staff had not said a crisis should not be wasted - meaning we can seize more power during a "crisis". Then this morning I found Obama declared it a national emergency - something that is rarely used by a president. This is a ploy to divert attention from Obama's failures and poor leadership onto something else most citizens can understand...the flu. This White House is evil, power hungry, and attacks anyone who disagrees with them. I used to think Obama would just not be a good president - now I think he is as dangerous to our freedoms as our foreign enemies.

Posted at 09:12 am in General | Comments (0)

Wonderful Pork Roast

Fri 23 October 2009

Last night I had some of the pork roast Kathryn sent over to me and as expected, it was wonderful. Not over-cooked, full of flavor, and tender as it could be. I've cooked pork roasts before but mine never come out like his did - why is that? Why is it that some people can just make everything taste great while others like me struggle. TB has been slimming down a bit but I've not got a clue as to how he can do that with Kathryn's cooking! Oh, I cooked some jasmine rice to go with the pork - it's hard to screw up rice although I've succeed in doing so in the past.

There was an exciting game on ESPN last night - Florida State played North Carolina in an ACC match-up. The first have of the game belonged to NC but the second half belonged to FSU. In the end, FSU came from way behind to beat NC 21 - 17. I watched most of the game through the beginning of the 4th quarter when it was time for me to go to bed.

Of course this brings me to tomorrow's college games which get more important as the season moves along. Georgia tech goes to the University of Virginia tomorrow to play UVA at noon. The Yellow Jackets have not beaten UVA in Virginia in several years including the last 3 tries. Having said that, this team is not the same team which lost in the past and if GT plays as well as they can, they should beat UVA. You see, that's what's bothering me...I'm not expecting Georgia Tech to win. You know what my coffee group says - expectations are set-ups for disappointments. So before the game even starts, I need to wrap my head around accepting the outcome in an effort to minimize my disappointment if the lose. The good news is the game starts at noon so I won't be all tied up in a knot when even comes - the last 3 games have been at night.

One of the young guys that comes to coffee from time to time dropped by yesterday morning - I've not seen him in over 6 months. Like many of our coffee klatch, he has come and gone filling the spaces between come with misery. No, it is not Jason but I can't tell you who it is without his permission. I really like this kid - he has a very kind personality and it is fun to talk with him. Although he has had some rough times, he keeps on coming back which in the long run gives he the greatest chance for happiness.

Lately the stock market has been trading in a range just above and just below 10,000. The good news is that I've gained back on paper about half of what I lost on paper - you don't have a realized gain or loss until you sell. I'm just wondering how much damage the Obama Administration can bring to bare in stock values if the things being worked on now pass. Most economists believe the Cap & Tax bill and especially the Obamacare bill will reek havoc on the stock market because of the huge cost/tax increase to businesses and individuals. Increased costs because of government regulations is never ever a good thing for the markets. Profit margins tank without a realized return elsewhere - just more spending, spending, spending. Just damn!

Posted at 08:48 am in General | Comments (2)

Congress is Miss-leading Us

Thu 22 October 2009

Last night was a restless night for me - I awoke 4 or 5 times which is not normal. This usually happens men my brain is processing a lot of stuff instead of being shutdown overnight. If I knew a safe way of turning it off, I would about 10 every night. I guess I'll just have to deal with it and move on. Oh, did I mention I woke up just before 5 am in time to watch the O'Reilly Factor from last night before Imus and FOX & friends start at 6 am. You would think that at this point in my life I'd be able to sleep better given the fact I have more sleep time available - it doesn't work that way.

Great news from Comcast, my ISP and cable TV provider. Next week they are adding 25 High Definition channels to their line-up - these are channels already available but not in HD up until now. For the most part, these channels were already available in HD on my DirectTV satellite. If I had to chose between Comcast or Direct TV for television, I'd chose Direct TV - they have more programming, more HD channels, and they are less expensive. The only trouble with DirectTV is you lose the signal during some rainstorms which we get around here especially in the Summer. But, I need a internet provider and Comcast is the very best available in Vero as far as I know. Having both is over-kill for most, but not for me - I watch a lot of TV and want as many options as I can get. Remember, more is better!

Last even Bridget delivered a meals-on-wheels package from Kathryn which contained roasted pork and what I believe is a homemade soup or stew. She is a great cook so I know already I'll like it even though I've not tried it yet. She was more than generous giving me enough for several feedings. I can't eat too much healthy food because I must have room for Blue Bell ice cream. In Florida, Blue Bell is my favorite off the shelf ice cream.

I need to correct something from yesterday's post - I said citizens would be fined between $500 and $1000 dollars for not buying into a $8000 health plan for an individual. I was wrong! A report on the news last night said the "fine" could be as low as $100 to $200. Once again I ask....why would anyone pay $8000/year for something they don't need when you can pay just a couple hundred dollars a year and the get what you whenever you need it? Does this plan make any sense to any of you folks? If it does, can you explain why to me?

Another thing...the Obama Administration claims "health care legislation" needs to be passed right away. It is critical. People are going to die. People are losing their health care because of unemployment. Well if 'heath care' is so damn urgent, why is it that the plans' benefits will not begin until 5 years from now? Why? I can tell you why. You see, the taxes, fees, and Medicare cuts start immediately while benefits don't start for at least 5 years in order to have a 'deficit neutral' program. In other words, the plans call for 10 years of revenue but only 5 year of benefits - does any see a problem with that? After 10 years the plans will run up huge deficits every year forever and you know it will cost a whole hell of a lot more than the projections as does every other government program.

I'm sick of the liberal bastards miss-leading Americans. I'm sick of their arrogant and condescending attitudes. What do you think?

Posted at 11:24 am in General | Comments (0)

Lost Freedoms

Wed 21 October 2009

Usually this paged is reserved for talking about my exciting, fun-filled life here in glorious Vero Beach - today I just have to jump in with some comments about the dangerous Obama administration because I think even the most liberal reader while even see my point. Oh yes, I know some of you are you left-leaning liberals who basically hate all things conservative - include reports from outlets considered right of center in the political arena. Because the 'fringe media' aka "mainstream media" are not reporting things happening in and with the Obama administration so my wealth of knowledge may be the only source you read. Here goes.

Recently the White House has declared FOX News a "non-news" outlet because they don't like the factual reporting coming from FOX News. Wait a minute.....when is it the job of the White House to decide what news outlets are "real news" outlets and which are not? The White House went even farther to "warn" other news outlets that for the most part are "in the tank" for the Obama Administration not to purse any news coming from FOX or they might find themselves in the same situation.

Does this bother any of you liberals out there? Does it seem maybe just a bit out of bounds for the White House to condemn and boycott a NEWS outlet just because they don't like the truthful but unfavorable reporting about the Obama Administration? Can anyone say First Amendment? You see, the First Amendment is not in place to protect favorable speech but just the opposite - it is there to protect unfavorable speech. The White House is acting just like Richard Nixon acted in attacking news outlets or even worse, a dictator like Hugo Chavez. In my opinion (which is the correct opinion of course) the Obama Administration has gone over the top and are way, way out of bounds in their action toward FOX News. Even the most liberal of liberals in the news business think the Administration is very wrong on this, after all, what if they don't like something reported by The New York Times, MSMBC, or CNN- who's next on their hate list?


This thin-skinned White House has acted as a bully toward some organization or company they don't like. Take for example the White House attacks and threats towards the health company called Humana Health Care. When Humana sent out a letter to their policyholders and clients suggesting that Obamacare will increase premiums across the board, the White House told them to stop doing that or face consequences. So tell me, since when is it OK for the White House to sensor communications between a company and it's clients? What the hell is up with this? Are we now to believe the White House thinks it is ok to to sensor or attack companies that communicate with their clients if the White House doesn't like the communication?!! The White House has NO business interfering with private business in this manner.

So lets say Obamacare becomes reality - will Obama and his White House thugs think they should control communications between doctor & patient? Will the White House publish a list of things doctors can not say to patients? I know the White House will limit care as they do know with Medicare and the VA Hospital. What other part of our lives will the Obama administration try to control? I can only pray that Obamacare fails - if you think otherwise, then perhaps you've not been informed on just what's in Obamacare.

As many of you know, I was once in the insurance business including providing group health insurance plans for our clients' business. Those were the good old days when you could buy health insurance and not break the bank. Today of course it is much different do in part to the leaps in medical technology and the expense of such leaps. One thing I understood is health insurance for employers worked because all employees were covered - well ones and sick ones. This meant the expenses of coverage was spread among a lot of people. Now along comes Obamacare that mandates everyone buy health insurance or pay a fine also known as a surcharge tax. First, where in the constitution does it say that the Federal Government can mandate citizens to buy ANYTHING? What happened to freedom of choice? Even with Medicare, you don't have to take it if you don't want it without having to pay a fine.

Here's one of the MAJOR problems with the plan. If you opt to buy insurance as mandated by Obamacare, then you'll be charged about $8000 per year for an individual and $16,000 to $20,000 for a family of four. But if you refuse, you'll be "fined" $500 to $1000 per year based on current language. Now here comes the catch 22 - Obamacare says that no one can be turned down for care so can you explain to me why health people would pay $8000/year instead of $1000/year?! You see, one could pay $1000 until a sickness occurred then elect to be covered because they could not be turned down. Does this make any sense to any of you? How long would a fire insurance company stay in business if by law they had to cover people who's house is already on fire!?!?

The Obama Administration is the most dangerous entity in our country today because of their destructive policies and practices. It is time for us to wake up, pay attention, and contact Congress. If we don't our country is doomed at least as we've known it for over 233 years! Is this the change you wanted?

Posted at 08:46 am in General | Comments (0)

Cooler Here

Tue 20 October 2009

For reasons I can't explain, I slept longer over night than I have since....well, I can't remember. Could it possible be that it cold cool inside my house because the temperatures dropped to about 52 overnight? It is true that colder temperatures do cause you to be drowsy but can these few degrees inside my house make a difference? I'm going to test that theory the next time it cools down overnight by leaving my heater either off or on a low temperature.

I hate calls to solicit money for anything - I'd rather get a letter than a call that interrupts whatever I'm doing especially a nap. A few weeks ago I made the BIG mistake of giving money to a Dick Morris Fund who's object was to stop the take-over of my health care. That was my mistake...I gave money. Since then I've gotten several calls asking for more money. Once you make the mistake of giving in the first place they will hound you to death. The only way to give money is through a money order that can not be traced back. If you use a check or credit card, they can find you and then call, call, and call again. In this case I asked to speak with a supervisor to demand my name be purged from their list. In the future, I hope not to make the same mistake - if I don't give, maybe they will not find me.

I watched a Spanish movie subtitled in English for a couple hours. It was a suspense-thriller type movie that got my attention. I will not bore you with the details - I personally don't like hearing the details about a movie someone else has seen. FYI..the name of the movie was "King of the Mountain" - I've not got a clue if you would hate it or love it.

I discovered an entry in my HijackThis log that looked suspicious so I tried to 'fix' it. Trouble is, it wouldn't go away until I did research which gave me some ideas to try. I found an entry in my start-up list that was not named - the entry was just blank. So, I removed it from the list and sure enough the entry went away in my HJT log. I was hoping this was the culprit which tries to access the internet but gets blocked by my Malwarebytes applications but alas it was not. I've still not located what is trying to "call home" but I'll keep on looking. Whatever it is, it's hiding really well.

As I was wandering through the Vero Beach sheriff's arrest log as I do from time to time, I discovered an 18 year old teenager was arrested for "Misdemeanor Open House Party". Huh? What the heck do you have to do to get arrested for that? What is a Misdemeanor Open House Party anyway? I wonder because TB & Kathryn have had issues with their next door neighbor, Party Hardy, for the noise he makes late at night yet he's never been arrested. So you can see my why I'm amazed at this teenager being arrested for an open house party. Was it too loud? There was no mention of underage drinking although it would not surprise me if in fact there was. And if there was underage consumption of adult beverages, why was that not listed? Sometimes I really wonder about the Sheriff's department priorities.

Starr said she and Alex had a great time visiting John in Tallahassee this past weekend. It was a great opportunity to show Alex what campus life is all about compared to IRSC. Plus I think they all missed one another even though John has gone away before. However, this is likely the longest time away from home and the beginning of what will likely be his permanent move from home. From my point of view, it would be great if John set up shop here in Vero after college but I predict that will not happen - opportunities are greater elsewhere like in Atlanta for example. Time will tell.

Posted at 08:53 am in General | Comments (0)

Great Football Day

Sun 18 October 2009

Of course I've a very happy camper this morning after Georgia Tech beat 4th ranked Virginia Tech 28 - 22 last night - I could even watch most of the game without an anxiety attack. I'll watch the whole game on a replay sometime this week to see if Georgia Tech still wins. Now the problem is that I thing the team can win most any game remaining in this season but I'd bet your favorite pet that the team will lose again - that's just how these things go. So I'll be disappointed I just don't know when. Could I be wrong? Unlikely.

There were several games I watched stating at noon and then past the GT game - I was up to past midnight with the excitement of the win. The Florida - Arkansas game was a close one - I bet TB was nervous if he could even stand to watch it. Like me, he gets anxious about these games. So while it was cloudy and turning cooler, I parked myself in front of my TV for most of the day.

Yesterday morning I made a Home Depot run to get a few things like a new light bulb for my water dispenser on the outside of my refrigerator, some counter top polish, and a new rubber plug for the disposal side of my sink - pretty exciting don't you think? While out, I went by Starr's home to feed her cat who was dutifully waiting for me. Then to the PO to pick up a new battery charger - plug-in for my laptop so that I can leave it in my bedroom suite. Often I'll bring my laptop into the room and place it on my writing table which enables me to watch TV and my computer at the same time. Why not just use the laptop battery you ask? It runs down in about 30 - 45 minutes - I need a new battery.

I've tried my new grill with great results - the only problem was that I cooked my burger a bit too long. After a few tests, I'm sure I'll get my timing down and in fact will likely do better than using my stove top. I think I'm going to like this easy to use grill with the only disappointment being I didn't buy it sooner. BTW, that was the only problem with the first HDTV I bought in Atlanta - I should have purchased one sooner. Now that I'm an old fart with a wealth of experience, I'm not going to wait to buy something like a TV or appliances because it's stupid if I eventually buy an item anyway.

Yesterday was a headache day although not a real bad one. Of course I have drugs to kill my headache but I don't like taking them. You see, it would be too easy for me to take them when I really don't need them and/or take more than I need. Which leads me to report that I've not been taking as much Adderall as Dr. Direct suggests I take for the same reason - I may take more than I really need although I've not had that inclination at all.

When I woke up it was 55 outside this morning - cool temperatures for the first time sine back in March. All I can say is it's about time!

Posted at 10:33 am in General | Comments (0)

Vero's 90th Birthday

Fri 16 October 2009

Posted at 09:44 am in General | Comments (0)

John's Got a Job

Thu 15 October 2009

It's still hot here and I'm getting tired of hot here in the middle of October. Two out of the past 3 days Vero's temperature tied the record high of 91. It's Fall for God's sake - where is the cool weather? Well, word has it that slightly cooler temperatures will head our way this weekend - it might get down to 68 or something.

News from John in Tallahassee - he's got a new job at what has been described to me as an up scale restaurant where he'll be a bar-back. I was pleased to hear he'll be a bar-back as opposed to being on top of the bar! Actually this is the job one does before becoming a bartender if he has that in mind. If the qualifications include consuming alcohol, he certainly qualifies. Frankly, I think his earning potential there is better than any alternative while keeping his clothes on!

It's property tax time again for my lot in Atlanta and my house here in Vero. The good news for me is my tax liability for the Florida house is much less than what I was paying in Atlanta. Ditto on the insurance for the house as well. Of course the house is less valuable but frankly is much more practical when it comes to size - I really can't complain. My plans are to squat in this house until they need to take me out in a body bag - hopefully a long time from now.

This morning I got an e-mail from someone for whom I built a website - I thought right away it was a scam although the sender's e-mail account was real. First, the alleged sender would not send such a e-mail in my opinion and second, the e-mail format looked like a scam. I contacted the person asking about the e-mail and sure enough, he did not send it. I was not surprised. It was about an online electronics store in China. I don't believe the e-mail was dangerous unless someone actually tried to buy something which means they could steal your credit card number used to purchase an item. I've offered top fix the problem and I'm awaiting a response now.

The simplest thing to do is send an e-mail to everyone in the address book advising about the scam then change the password on the account. You see, the hackers already have the addresses in the address book and they know the e-mail address. Once you know a real e-mail address it is easy to send e-mails that appear to come from that address by using a SMTP client that will cloak the real sender. These internet hackers and scam artists are good.

I looked at the college football betting lines to see what those who put up money think about the Georgia Tech - Virginia Tech game Saturday night. I'm pleased to report that Virginia Tech (#4 in the country) is favored to win - I always think Georgia Tech does better when they are the underdog. If GT can avoid mistakes and beef up their defense, I think Georgia Tech could possible win although it seems unlikely.

Posted at 10:04 am in General | Comments (0)

Miss Me?

Wed 14 October 2009

Yesterday was sort of a day off for me - a day I didn't spend hours on my computer either trying to fix things are more site work. actually, I've gotten most of the stuff I'd promised to do or projects I've taken on behind me. There is a lull which feels pretty go now. Worry not, I'm sure I'll be on something else soon.

As reported on Monday, my house keepers did indeed come back with the same attention to detail I've come to expect. They'll put me on the every two week rotation like I've had in the past. As you know, I keep the house clean but I don't dust, I don't do floors, and I don't do windows - my house keepers do. They will be here on Friday to clean my windows inside and out - they certainly need it.

I've referred them to Kathryn who has been looking for some new housekeepers. She said she was impressed with their meeting on Monday afternoon and they will be at the Barnes River estate today for a "first clean". What Kathryn likes about them as do I, they will clean anything - today they'll clean the inside of Kathryn's refrigerator. Well see how things go but I'm pretty sure she'll like them as much as I do.

The DeLonghi Grill I bought was delivered yesterday - it appears to be in perfect shape new in the box. I've not tried it yet but I plan to do so very soon when I cook either a hamburger or a nice steak. I'm hoping this will be the appliance I've been looking for to cook meat inside my house without using the microwave or oven. I don't know about you but I think meat cooked in a microwave sucks! It just tastes bad. For cooking frozen foods, I think microwaves are the best - they just don't seem to do well with fresh meats of any nature.

I got a e-mail from the Mercedes dealership in Ft. pierce announce a $70 rebate on the purchase of 4 new Michelin tires. I gave it consideration but I think I still have a good bit of time left on the tires I have now because I don't go very far. You will find this amazing, but I've not filled my tank with gas since the end of August! If I keep this pace up, I'll go two months on one tank which means I'm not going very far thus my tires should last about 13 more years at this pace. Well, not really but I don't need to buy new tires now for $190 a piece.

I'm still get Malwearbytes alerts saying that access to a questionable site has been block - that's a good thing. The problem is that I don't know what application is trying to contact China! I've searched and searched with no success - I can't find where the bugger is hiding. I've not found the utility that will tell me what program is trying to access the internet although I know some firewalls will do exactly that. My TrenMicro security suite will not tell me what I need to know but the AVG Internet Security suite will. I just hate to uninstall TrenMicro until my license runs out just for this one thing. Hmm...what to do?

Here's a picture of my house at dusk with the landscape lights on - cool, huh?

Posted at 05:32 am in General | Comments (0)

House Keepers Return

Mon 12 October 2009

The good news for me this morning is that my housekeepers have returned after being gone for over a month. It sure is nice to have them back because I trust them and they are second to none when comes to attention to detail. Oh sure, I can clean my house in the detailed way they do but I don't want to - I'm too lazy. Besides, I've had a hose keeper since my days at the Cross Creek apartments in Atlanta in 1970. You know I like things to be neat, clean, and tidy - I'm just not interested in doing it myself.

Captain Matt called last night as he was headed back to Atlanta from a golfing weekend in Tallahassee with some of his fraternity brothers from college. He reported he had a great time, played a lot, and stayed out of trouble which is a good thing. One of the games he played was at night with golf balls that glowed when you hit them - how does that work? How can you smack the living daylights out of a bal and then it glows for a few minutes but stops glowing until you fit it again. It's got to be some sort of chemicals that illuminate when agitated don't you think? I've been in tropical waters where you will find creatures that glow once the water is agitated so I assume it's the same thing. Night golf - who would have thunk [sic] it?

I watched a replay of the Georgia Tech - Florida State game yesterday afternoon. It was easier to watch when I knew the outcome but was hard to watch live - my anxiety level builds no matter what happens. I must say that Georgia Tech has a darn good offense but I'm not convinced their defense is all that great. Going against a passing team like Virginia Tech this weekend will be a hell of a challenge. This will be one heck of a challenge for Georgia Tech but if the team can minimize turning the ball over and get the special team up to snuff, they have a chance of winning. I just think the Virginia Tech team has a better defense that did Florida State.

Some of you have been asking about my meds becauseI've not mentioned them in awhile. Well, I think I've arrived at a point where by my meds work, the dosage is correct, and at this point I'm not unhappy with the results. Of course there could be another medication or combination that is better but for now I'm willing to give this protocol a longer time to see what happens.

I've got a ton of things to do so I'm off to Wally world, Publix, and Walgreen's .

Posted at 10:25 am in General | Comments (0)

What a Game!

Sun 11 October 2009

TECH WINS 48 - 44!

Holy sh*t batman...what a game! In case you didn't stay up until after midnight watching the Florida State - Georgia Tech game, I'm here to report Georgia Tech won 49 - 44 in an offensive battle. I really like high scoring games especially if my team comes out on top. The bad news about the game is that once again Georgia Tech has confirmed they have a lousy defense against the pass and next week they'll face a powerful Virginia Tech team that passes a lot. BTW, VT beat Boston College yesterday 44 - 12 or something like that.

I knew that Georgia Tech came to win the game because the very first time Georgia Tech had possession of the ball, they went for a first down on 4th down with 3 yards to go for a first and they were just mid-field. I would venture to say that 99.99% of college football coaches would not have gone for a first down with 3 yards to go especially at mid-field on their first possession. Sure if your down by a couple touchdowns with 2 minutes left to play you do that but not with 57 minutes left to play. BTW, Georgia Tech did make the first down - what one hell of a confidence builder for the team.

The other major game last night was booooooooring. It was between the University of Florida and LSU - the #1 and #4 teams in the country. I won't bore you with the boring details but simply say Florida outlasted LSU in a 13 - 3 defensive-fest. Of course a win is a win therefore you Florida fans should be very happy. I just like high scoring games but they also should be close. The Penn State - Eastern Illinois game was high scoring but not close - Penn State won 52 - 3. Unfortunately wee are now about half way through the season when it seems to me like it just started last week!

I woke up this morning with what felt like a scratched left eyeball - I could barely open my eye and it hurt. The eye drops I have wouldn't do any good but placing a nice cold washcloth on the eye did help. Here a few hours later it is better but not normal yet. I also have what seems like the beginning of a headache day. I took one Tylenol III pill which didn't help a lot - this is sign that things will get worse. At least I'm happy that Georgia Tech won even if I do have a scratched eyeball and headache.

One other thing I want to mention about the college football games on TV in HD....CBS has the very best cameras and broadcasts the brightest, sharpest pictures. They are better than ESPN or ABC and a lot better than CCS or FSN. The difference is very noticeable to me - how about you?

I'm going to take another pill and watch TV - I'll not be on this computer much today.

Posted at 10:03 am in General | Comments (0)

Thoughts on Norway

Sat 10 October 2009

It's Saturday in the Fall so it must be college football day. I've glanced at the schedule for today's games on TV and I think I can watch non-stop from noon until after 11pm tonight. Now that there are a few weeks behind us in this season, the games become more interesting and the teams play teams in their conference instead of the out-of-conference games you get early in the season. Of course the two games of most interest to me are the the Georgia Tech - FSU and Florida - LSU games tonight both starting at 8pm. I don't like night games for because I get all tense and then it's hard to go to sleep - this happens whether they win or lose. Let the games begin...I just wish it were cooler here like it should be for college football.

There are some typo's I need to edit on Kathryn's website but until she gives me the list, I declare myself done for the moment. Kathryn certainly is involved in the development and changes in her website - I think I've created a Blog monster. The Blog and FAQ pages are the two news additions and the splash page had a make-over to include a news scroll. Have a look at SingerJohnston.com - check out her Blog and the incredibly long list of frequently asked questions. What do you think?

I have to say this....the Nobel Peace Prize will for ever more be a joke after the selection of Obama - what the hell has he done to deserve that more than the other 203 nominees? Don't get me wrong, I'm among those who things it is a good thing for an American President to win the prize - it is just good for the country even if we are at war in Iraq and elsewhere. My point is that Obama has really not done anything tangible to deserve the prize - he's traveled around the World apologizing for America and he's read a few speeches from a teleprompter that someone else has written. The Norwegian leftist socialist gave him the prize because he's not George Bush IMO. The selection committee has forever down-graded the Peace Prize from which it will never recover - you can't put the toothpaste back in the tube!

I've been to Norway spending almost a month there back in the 70's - I live with a Norwegian family in the village of Sandnessjoen. My parents got to know a barmaid who worked at Lennie's 43rd lounge who was from Norway and when she was going home for a visit, I went too. The country was beautiful beyond my ability to describe it here - the Norwegian fjords are breath-taking much like the tall, blonde hair, blue eyed babes. One thing that is 100% true...the population of Norway are more beautiful and handsome than I found in any of the other countries I've visited and I've visited a lot!

One thing that kept me off guard is this 20 hours of light they have in the Summers - it was always light and when it got dark, it was really not very dark. The people there are healthy handsome, and very homogenous - you did not find people of other ethnic backgrounds. I did not see a single Hispanic, Asian, or black person in the weeks I visited the country - not one! Which, by the way, is why I believe their cradle to grave socialist state works for them - they are all alike. Did you know the average worker can pay 60% to 70% in taxes? Jeez! The strange thing is they seem to like it. I could go on and on about this amazing adventure I had the privilege to have about 35 years ago but I think I'll stop for now. The picture I've posted is a very typical Norwegian scene. Just beautiful.

Posted at 08:44 am in General | Comments (2)

Beware of Ads

Fri 09 October 2009

About a week ago I was talking about getting an indoor grill-like appliance to cook meat and chicken. Kathryn e-mailed me to suggest the DeLonghi CGH800-U Sandwich Maker-Grill which she has been using for years. Well, knowing how demanding she is about all things kitchen, I would be foolish not to at least give it a good look. The darn things are about $60 - $70 new at retail stores but of course I did my research to see what I could find. There were several new in the box grills for auction on eBay - they usually went for between $30 and $40. Not being in a hurry, I bid low on several of them and lost except for one. Using my Auction Snapper utility, I placed a bid that would not be submitted until 3 seconds before the auction end - clearly another bidder did the same so at the closing 3 seconds, 4 bids were submitted and although my bid was low, it was high enough to win! I bid a maximum of $17.65 but got it for $16.39 plus shipping ($10) - not bad, huh? With patience, eBay can be a great place to buy things but I've also found I can often buy cheaper elsewhere.

Yesterday I spent the afternoon and early evening working on a new FAQ page for Kathryn's site. I thought this would be a great way to add a lot of key search words to her site, add information & text to the site, and show the visitor that her firm looks out for the injured. She did the Q&A but I coded the whole thing - it should be finished later today. My God can Kathryn be verbose!!

I've been watching Imus in the morning all week on Fox News Channel - I really enjoy the humor. It comes on at 6am and lasts until 9am - I do leave for coffee about 7:25am each morning. If you've never watched or listen to Imus, I think you're missing some great humor but then again, each to his own view. He's on radio at the same time so you need not be in front of a TV.

Tomorrow night there will be a great college football game at 8 o'clock - no, I'm not speaking of Georgia Tech - FSU but rather Florida at LSU. My plans are to watch both games by switching back and forth - the Tech game is on ESPN and the Florida game is on CBS. Florida is #1 in the country and LSU is #4 in the country. If I were a betting man, I'd go with Florida especially if their hot quarterback is well enough to play and I bet he will play. However, if Florida has turn overs, the game could go to LSU. In a close game, interceptions and fumbles usually make the difference.

Did you know that the "sponsored" links on many search engines will take you to a nefarious site? The main news letter to which I subscribe wrote this:

The three largest search sites -- Google, Yahoo, and Bing-- regularly sell security-related keywords to criminals looking to trick you into downloading and installing fake anti-malware products. The crooks then steal your personal information or hold your system for ransom before letting you remove their malware from your machine.

And it's not just search engines. In the most-recent case, NYTimes.com and other established sites hosted malware-infested ads. When malicious ads-- or "malvertisements"-- enter the rotation on these sites, your system may become infected if you merely view the page. This is especially true if your versions of media players based on Java, Flash, or QuickTime are out-of-date.

You need to make sure your machine is protected and applications are up to date.

One thing I do miss about Atlanta is the color changes in the Fall.

Posted at 08:53 am in General | Comments (0)

Internet Fraud

Thu 08 October 2009

After reading my report on Monday about recieving an e-mail wanting me to confirm a Facebook sign-up that I did nor request, GT Jeff sent me a link about Facebook fraud. I'm not sure if the fraud reported in Jeff's link was the same thing I got but it did cause me to look into in more. I discovered that the type of false sign-up I got was not uncommon - many people fall for it which leads to identification theft or a direct solution for money.

My years of working on security forums has taught me to be very suspicious about receiving things I did not ask to receive. Often I'll get an e-mail addressed to me from Bank of America asking me to sign in or verify something and while the e-mail address is correct, the e-mail starts with "Dear Customer" instead of my name - I got one yesterday. In the Facebook event I mentioned, not only was the e-mail addressed properly, it addressed me as Bill Cherry. I checked out the links in the e-mail which all turned out to be valid. This apparently is a new scam really coming from Facebook but for an account I did not request. In the e-mail, the info included a username and password I've never used or would chose - I think it was a back down into the account if I were to establish one. Then, the scam artist could see who my real friends are then contact them via the false account and it would really look like it came from me. Very clever, huh? Here's a report I found.

I knew it was going to happen again but it has been a long time - three landscape lights burned out. With the days becoming shorter, my lights stay on longer and thus burn out sooner. I will say that the real GE bulbs last a lot longer than the cheaper brand x bulbs. The GE bulbs cost twice as much but last 3 or 4 times longer. I've got 3 I should replace and will do so later today.

It's been a few days but mid-morning yesterday my refrigerator stated to whine again. This time I got the tools out to take a plate off the back of the freezer which I was unwilling to do the other night. Wouldn't you know it - I was banging around so much the noise stopped before I got the plate off to have a look. No worries - I'm sure it will give me yet another opportunity to have a look see.

I decided to install the AVG Security suite on my Dell Optimax computer (pictured) I bought from an eBay seller - it had been refurbished with a new 250GB hard drive and 2GB of memory. What I like about this machine is it has almost none of the programs that come pre-installed on a new computer and that's a good thing. And, even more important, it has a really fast 3GHz processor. So, I copied my big Western Digital "My Book" back-up external hard drive to a Buffalo external hard drive that, like the Western Digital, will start and stop as I boot and then shut down the machine. So basically I have a clean machine with all the data from my other computers available via the Buffalo drive leaving the computer with almost no HD usage. Now what am I going to do?Hmmm..

Posted at 05:15 am in General | Comments (0)

Coffee Klatch

Wed 07 October 2009

This morning I will be the fearless leader of our coffee klatch - I do that the first Wednesday in each month. attendees will have the joyous opportunity to listen to my pearls of wisdom and other BS. This is always fun for me because I'm never short on words or things to discuss. If you are in Vero, come by sometime - with my influence I can get you in for free.

Yesterday I helped TB move some vehicles around from the Barnes Estate West to the famous pole barn out in the boonies. The guy who was sort of the grove manager for Barnes groves had to retire because of health. It was his nasty dirty Tahoe we took to the barn so the grove crew could clean it up. I think TB plans on selling it once it is in a condition where someone might want to buy it.

as compensation for my help, Tommy brought some paella which I plan to get into later today. Kathryn was in a cooking mood and fixed it the other night for dinner. What is there not to like in this dish? I really enjoy the dish but rarely get a chance to eat it. Heck if you to a restaurant to eat it, you have to call a week in advance (not really but you usually have to call ahead). It must take a long time to prepare.

I've still not installed the dragon voice recognition software as yet - I've been busy on other thinks like Kathryn's website. She called yesterday to say she got the first call to her office from someone who found her website on the internet. The old site was there for years and years and not once did it bring in a potential client. The new site is highly ranked on Google's search engine and of course is a good bit more pleasing to the eye with that professional look - I created it, what do you expect?! Now the goal is to move the site even higher on search engines which will be difficult but progress can be made. The first 90% is not all that difficult, it's the last 10% that is hard.

Yesterday afternoon Tom dropped by for a visit - he and Mary Ann always honk when the drive by and I know it's them. The good news is that Tom is doing well - in fact I don't know how anything could be better. One always has to be vigilant of course but it seems the worst is behind him. That's a good thing.

Posted at 05:27 am in General | Comments (0)

Unwanted Facebook Account

Tue 06 October 2009

Posted at 04:34 am in General | Comments (2)

Sunday Morning Elitists

Mon 05 October 2009

I've not watched any of the Sunday morning political talk shows in a long time but between movies, I checked in on 'This Week' on ABC and 'Meet the Depressed' on NBC - now I remember why I don't watch them anymore!! What a much of elitist arrogant a-holes that believe the only correct opinion is their opinion and the rest of us are dummies that can't possibly get through life without their profoundly wise declaration of fact. JEEZ!!! To make it even worse, most of them are not only Liberals but some are on the far, far left fringe of society. These holier-than-thou Washington snobs are so out of touch with mainstream America that the only opinions they have is from the supercilious view. Unfortunately, I believe they are just an example of those vainglorious windbags that live inside the Washington bubble. No wonder the country is so divided if all the input you have is from haughty, pompous people like these.

I'm not alone in my opinion that things out here in fly-over country between the Los Angles liberal movie types and the New York - Washington condescending know-it-alls. The majority of America view things a bit right of center, not out on the far left fringe. It's my belief that most Democrats out here in America that actually work for a living are much more centrist than their current contemptuous leadership. They just don't get it. And if they do get it, they want to force their ways on the rest of us who are much more moderate no matter if you are Democrat or republican. It is not just me, the polls overwhelming support what I'm saying. I could go on and on but my blood is already getting above my normal limits.

After several days of being quiet, my laundry room refrigerator started making a noise yesterday morning so I opened the freezer and hit the back wall with the palm of my hand. I'll eventually want to replace the appliance but after looking on the internet I discovered it will cost me over $400 to do so. what I'd really like to get is a unit that has a scratch, dent, or for some reason can't demand the full price - as long as it works I think I'll be ok with that. Or wait until a good sale comes along at Home Depot, Sears, etc. In the meantime, the refrigerator works fine except for that occasional noise. I don't like noise.

There is still something nefarious in my desktop trying to access the internet and I can't find out what it is - I say nefarious because it tries to contact a eastern block country. I don't have anything that's legitimate that should be trying to do that. I've searched and scanned without finding anything. I've looked at running programs when the attempt is made only to discover there's nothing unusual running. Perhaps it uses a legit application to attempt to access the internet. How do I know it's bad you ask? Well I've got the paid version of Malwarebytes that monitors my computer in real time and blocks attempts to access the internet if the IP is on a black list. The search continues. By the way, the IP is in The Republic of Moldova - it is in a range of IP numbers belonging to a Moldova ISP thus is likely an individual rather that a company. Who would know?

A new week so what have I got on my schedule? Nothing really except I have the speech recognition software Kathryn got from her partner so I can install it on my computer. Perhaps I'll start later this morning - I like new programs with which to play.

I just like today's photograph.

Posted at 05:17 am in General | Comments (0)

Another Win

Sun 04 October 2009

Last night was a restless night for me because in part I stayed up to watch the Georgia Tech - Mississippi State game until after 11PM and I woke up around 4 AM - if I can't sleep I get up. The game was the kind I like - high scoring with a lot of action. Gear Tech did beat Mississippi State 42-31. The Jackets made some serious mistakes like fumbling the ball on the goal line when it should have been a touchdown. The good news is Mississippi State made more mistakes including two fumble turn-over which GT taking away scoring opportunities.

My team played well but will need to do better to beat some of the teams coming up like Florida State in Tallahassee next weekend. It is true FSU has struggled a bit but they played very well against Miami, the team that ran over GT a couple weeks ago. You never know which team will be up on any given Saturday - I hope the coaches can get the guys prepared and fired-up .

There is a lot of difference between watching football on ESPN in HD and watching a game on CSS in HD. The ESPN cameras are sharper and brighter than the Comcast Sport South cameras. The enthusiasm of the announcers for each team is remarkable different - ESPN is very professional while the CSS guys sounded like they were covering a high school game - heck, maybe they ere high school announcers for all I know. The very best games from a camera standpoint can be found on CBS.

Before the games started yesterday I went to set-up the computer Captain Matt bought for his Mom. The new towers are about half the size of the towers I have and weight a good bit less as well. After set up, I installed security software including AVG Internet Security suite among others. This AVG commercial program is great but can be a bit confusing when you first teach it what programs are good to allow internet access and which are not. I'll help Lina if she has questions on this software as it can be challenging when first set up but it is an excellent program.

Kathryn was working on her website yesterday and broke her intro page at least twice that I remember or maybe more. She was attempting to edit some text in a news reporting system but the problem is the news system is written in JavaScript. For those of you who don't know, JavaScript is not forgiving - it has to be 100% correct or it will not work. That means if you add or remove a dot, comma, apostrophe, a letter, etc the system will brake. The good news is I know how to fix the program but it sure has heck can be frustrating. I don't even attempt to code in JavaScript because I can always find what I want from someone who's already written the script - no need to reinvent the wheel.

There were high school and middle school kids out collecting donations or washing cars yesterday at Wal-Mart and the auto supply shop on highway 60 where my family's home was once located. I gave $10 to the young teenage boys raising $$ for the baseball team - it was worth the donation to see how excited they were to get $10 instead of $1 or nothing at all. I also got my car washed by the high school guys because once again, it is fun to be in a community where this sort of stuff happens. Small town life is good for me at this point - I don't miss Atlanta.

Posted at 05:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Google Down

Sat 03 October 2009

When I logged on this morning, my Google home page would not completely load and I couldn't get to my Google mail at all! My first thought was something nasty has gotten into my computer but I can get to other websites without a problem. Then I booted my laptop which revealed the same problem - no access to Google mail and Google search was real slow - this means it's a Google website issue and not a computer issue because the results are the same on all my machines. I'm pretty darn sure Google knows about this and my guess is that it will be fixed later in the day. It's really a pisser when Google is soooooo slow but what can I do?

I searched 'Google slow today' on Yahoo which yielded some reports that indeed Google is slow but it did not seem like the reports were very numerous but what you might expect on a regular bases. Of course you know I like mysteries so I perused it even more by trying a proxy but the results were the same. Then I found reports that one of Google's ad servers is down which might cause the page from not loading properly after all, that's how they make money. Stay tuned.

Kathryn presented me with a problem as to why her splash page news scroll crashed. I did not write the JavaScript but rather used a script written by someone else - I've not gotten into writing JavaScript code nor do I plan to when I can find others who have already do it for me. Well it took me about a hour to figure it out but figure it out I did - I'm impressed with myself this morning. When Kathryn broke the script yesterday I had no clue what so ever why. But starring at the code and then trying a few things lead me to the solution - she put an apostrophe in a sentence which screwed up the code but what she did was normal. It turns out that the "news" input can not have an apostrophe in a sentence even to express a possessive noun - who would have thunk [sic] it? It's fixed and once again I've learned an important lesson about JavaScript.

Kathryn did bring me the Dragon Naturally speaking software which I plan on trying soon. This is the voice recognition software that will avail me the opportunity to dictate my pearls of wisdom here on BillsView - it takes me about 30 to 45 minutes to post each morning because I use one finger to type - I never learned to type and don't plan on starting now.

Of course you know it is College Football Saturday and Georgia Tech plays tonight at 6:30 (I think) against Mississippi State at their stadium. It is not covered by the 'normal' outlets but Comcast's sports channel will have it and here in Vero, Comcast's sports channel can be in HD. The question now is will they actually broadcast in HD? Nonetheless, I'll be watching until and unless my anxiety level gets too high at which point I'll switch between games.

Since I started this post, Google has been fixed just as I expected. Good.

Posted at 08:03 am in General | Comments (0)

College Life for John

Thu 01 October 2009

John called last night just to check in and bring me up to date in the life & times of a college student. He's doing well, going to class, hanging with his buddies, and for the most part seems to be enjoying college - good for him, he should be enjoying college. He has been rather reckless lately in that he lost his bank card on one day and the later lost his driver's license - both issues have been resolved. Some of you might remember the two girls John met at the Tiki bar at Holiday Isle this past summer during our annual trip top paradise - they said they go to FSU and to look them up in Tallahassee. Well, one of them found John and since the he's had a chance to get together and meet Somme other girls in their circle. The thing I think is both funny and cool is they've given john the nickname of "Keys" - well, it makes since to me, don't you agree? Meeting other folks and increasing your circle of friends is a very important part of college life IMO. It is good to meet and get to know people from outside your small home town - good for John. Oh, he did mention that the Captain may come into Tallahassee for a golf tournament this weekend - heck I didn't even know Matt plays golf!

Update on my old Atlanta home - I called my neighbors yesterday after GT Jeff told me he went around Peachtree Battle Circle and then reported the high water mark to me. The water got several feet higher than I'd ever seen it in the 34 years I lived in the house meaning water had to get into 900. Wrong! The dudes had the presence of mind to get some sandbags and pile them around the lower deck up to about 3'. At the high point the water was up to the top but never came over the sandbags! That's good news for them but can you imagine being in the house and looking out to see the water about waist deep on the other side of the sandbags? Jeez!

Remember my refrigerator noise issue from the other day...well I went about 36 hours without the noise then out of the blue it returned. once again a good swift bang on the back of the freezer compartment with my fist fixed it again at least for now. The noise must be made by the fan motor based on where the sound is coming from in the refrigerator - it doesn't seem to be a compressor noise. If it is not the fan then it is a vibration caused by either the fan or compressor although I still think it is a fan issue. I tried to unscrew the back of the freezer wall from the inside but I couldn't do it with my hand-held screwdriver. The next time I hear the noise, I'll try using my drill if it will fit into the space - maybe then I can see the problem?

I was looking at new refrigerators on the websites of Home Depot, Lowe's, and Sears - all of their refrigerators in the 15 cubic feet range start at $400. Damn! It seems to me I paid less than that when I bought the one I have about 5 years ago - I guess the prices have just gone up. I just want a very basic unit with a freezer on top and about 15 cubic feet. Maybe I'll need to wait for a sale to get one for much less or maybe find either a floor model or one with a dent.

It's October and for the first time since early last Spring the temperature was below 70 F when I got up this morning - it's about time it started cooling off. Back in Atlanta it would have already started to cool down which is what I've learned to expect after living there for 41 years. Now I've got to readjust my thinking into a much warmer climate which by the way I like in the Winters. I still have a lot of warm clothes left over from Atlanta that I'll never ware - looks like Goodwill or some similar organization will be the beneficiary of some of these things. I do want to spend another Winter before I decide what to give away. Maybe Captain Matt can go shopping in my closets for warm clothes like I used to shop in his closet for stuff I liked to wear.

Posted at 07:03 am in General | Comments (0)

Cupcakes from Kathryn

Tue 29 September 2009

As I was getting ready to take my hot soaking bath before bed last night, the laundry room refrigerator started to 'sing' again. So, I used that tried and true repair technique, I hit the back of the freezer wall with my fist. It stopped but started up again so repeated and the same thing happened. So I tried to unscrew the back wall but I could not get the screws to budge. I hit it again but the noise continued but at a lower volume - it seems it's time to replace that refrigerator. My fix before bed was to move Sally Cat's litter box into the hall and shut the laundry room door to reduce the volume as I was going to bed. That's where my AC handler is located but I wisely had a louvered panel put in when the house was remodeled. Now this morning there is no sound at all - what's up with that? I had planned to go to Home Depot to buy a new unit but I think I'll wait until I hear it again...if I hear it again. Things like this usually do not fix themselves just like water leaks don't fix themselves. Well see what today brings. I do need a refrigerator there to hold all my drinks & beer and more importantly, my ice cream stash.

Yesterday I helped Kathryn with her computer and finally found a solution to the font size issue on her monitor. I tried before and her professional computer guy tried but we both failed. The computer guy suggested that the code I used for Kathryn's site needed changing with regard to fonts. There are standard codes used to identify the size of a font relative to the 'standard' size - those codes are H1, H2, H3, and so on. On Kathryn's page I didn't make the fonts relative but gave specific sizes to H1,H2, H# so I changed the code to make it 'relative' but that did not work which told me it was a monitor issue for sure. Finally I thought of a browser setting instead of a monitor setting that might help if changed and bingo, it fixed it. I learn something new everyday which fuels my energy and sense of satisfaction.

After lunch Kathryn brought me a box of gourmet cupcakes from a new shop that opened next to the Maryland fried chicken store. The cupcakes are very rich, full of sugar just like I like. The best way to get me on your side is through my stomach especially with ice cream, cakes, and chocolate. I sure have a sweet tooth which I inherited from my Dad and I increased it about 8 years ago when I started going for coffee in the mornings. I'll have to go by and check out the store myself. I wonder just how many cupcakes you need to sell to stay in business - it doesn't seem as if this will be very easy but who knows?

Starr came buy for a visit yesterday afternoon as she often does especially when she goes to the library. She is so busy doing so many things it boggles my mind but I guess that's what mothers do. She's always on the go, working, shopping, attending functions, helping others, and of course she's always doing something for Alex or John - especially Alex because he's at home and started college a few weeks ago. It is exhausting to hear what she does, it would wear me out. But sitting in from of a computer doing coding, building website, fixing machines, and researching this or that might drive others crazy too.

I've got to stop now as it's time for meeting my friends for coffee.

Posted at 07:14 am in General | Comments (0)

Flu Shot

Mon 28 September 2009

Just got back from running my Monday morning errands which took up the morning - it's time for lunch and Russ Limbaugh. I find Monday mornings after coffee is a perfect time to get things done, at least for me. My first stop was at Target where I was looking for an indoor grill-like device on which I can "grill" steaks, burgers, etc. Well I didn't find anything that would do what I wanted but I did see a grill skillet with groves which reminded me I have one of those somewhere. So while I didn't get what I thought I wanted, I did get a solution worth trying - I've never used this skillet before.

Then I went to Office Depot seeking a headset only to find their offerings were very limited. The online store has dozens and dozens from witch to choose but in the Vero store there were only about 6 - 3 of the 6 were not worth considering. So, I'll continue my search but I'm thinking online is going to be my best answer.

Then on to Publix for some food - I don't eat much but I do eat every three days whether I'm hungry or not. I found blue bell ice cream on sale - my favorite store-bought ice cream - so of course I got a couple half gallons. While checking out, the lady who was bagging my groceries was told she could go on break so rather than finishing bagging, she just walked away! I'd rather bag myself so it is not a big deal but if this women was working for me, she would not be working for me anymore. What a worthless employee IMHO.

Then I went next door to have a battery put in my Swiss Army watch which should take about 5 minutes. There was were some blue-hairs looking at a ring and they looked, looked, and continued to look as I was walking out the door. Normally I would be unhappy that someone dare to take my time but I said to myself, self...if you were the jeweler, you too would spend time with the potential buys of an expensive ring rather than replacing a battery. And if I were the buyers, I too might take the time I thought I needed to decide. Well actually, when I go into a jewelry store, I know what I want before I walk in like the time I bought my Rolex in Switzerland in September, 1981.

Then as I was getting back onto state road 60, I noticed a sign in front of Walgreen's saying "get your flu shot here" - I was surprised because they were not suppose to start until October 1. I pulled in thinking that if none knew about the shots, there would not be a line - I was correct. After filling out the paperwork, I got my shot and left. I've been doing this for 20 years and since that time I've never had the flu - bad colds, but not the flu. Now I guess I need to get a shot for the N1H1 flu once they are available.

Once I returned, I had a call from Kathryn asking me to explain the issues I found with her computer with her "computer guy", Dan, while he was there. I explained the logon problem with her website's control panel and reproduced it this morning. Then I tried my website and couldn't logon there either. I could log on via a proxy from Kathryn's computer which suggests to me it is highly likely her IP is blocked somehow. I'll look into it more later today - time for lunch.

Posted at 11:39 am in General | Comments (0)

Kicking Game Sucks

Sun 27 September 2009

I'm a happy camper this morning after Georgia Tech beat North Carolina yesterday in Atlanta when they were the underdogs. I think Tech plays better when they are underdogs - if they are favorite to win, too many players read the press and believe it. I even watched the whole game without getting a knot in my stomach. There where some bad things about the game like the field goal kicker missed two field goals well with in his range - that should not happen. Also, two GT kick-off's went out of bounds giving UNC the ball on the 40 yard line and not the 20 - that should not happen. And then a tech player with dreadlocks flowing from under his helmet got pulled to the ground by his hair on a run that could have gone all the way. Jeez!

The team continues to make mistakes and certainly will lose more games in the future - perhaps next week against Florida State in Tallahassee. Then again, FSU lost to South Florida and that was not suppose to happen. The team that beat Tech last week, Miami, lost to Virginia Tech and that was not suppose to happen. What I've noticed this year is there doesn't seem to be the usual concentration of powerful teams - the only really powerful team I see is the University of Florida. This is certainly an interesting season.

The word is in from Tulip lain - it was a sprinkler leak. Every time the sprinkler system came on, a leak under the banana trees released a lot of water. I'm surprised it was not noticed but Kathryn tells me the tress are sort off by themselves. Leaks can be costly in a house but outside the costs can and usually are much higher.

I still have not gone to fetch the items I mentioned yesterday and likely will not go today. I think I'll wait until after coffee in the morning to make the rounds. Today I'll pick a movie, watch TV, and work on my computer - oh wait, that's pretty much what I do everyday. I've got some projects in process but for the most part I need a response from individuals before I go any further. I did teach myself anew trick in Flash - I learned how to edit a URL in a flash movie. It took me a couple of hours of trial and error until I got it but in the process I learned a lot. This is the manor in which I learn everything - research then trial, error, more error, then I usually get it. I'm still not ready to learn to build a flash movie but once I find a flash object I like, I can change the text and the pictures to suit my needs. Fun, huh?

My cat sally sure seems to want more attention more often. She used to just sort of be there but now she is almost always in the same room I'm in and usually lying very close by. Heck, she even gets on the back of my bathtub when I do my pre-sleep hot bath treatments. She's on my desk and regularly sits between me and my computer screen on my keyboard which is not good - she's sat on hot keys before and screwed up e stuff I was doing at the time. Well, that's what cats do.

The days are certainly getting shorter around here. I'm having to change my landscape lights about every ten days to come on earlier because it's getting dark earlier. But I like the Fall and shorter days - what I don't like is getting up in the dark while I get ready for coffee. Oh, well.

Posted at 06:50 am in General | Comments (0)

Out of Gas?

Sat 26 September 2009

The Yellow Jackets take on North Carolina today at noon in Atlanta - I can see the game in HD on Comcast. I've checked the betting line on the game and it is almost even with a slight 3 point edge to Georgia Tech which in my mind means nothing. It will be a matter of how the team wants to play today because I know they can play well when really want to do so. I'm hoping the coaching staff can get them fired-up and hungry for a win.

When talking to Kathryn about her website yesterday she shared with me their power/water bill on Tulip Lane - OMG...it was outrageous! I don't think I need to post how much it was just believe me when I say it was high mostly because of the water usage. With the amount of water they consumed - or at least were charged for using - it is clear to TB, Kathryn , and me there must be a leak somewhere or Tommy is trying to make the canal behind his house a fresh water canal. Plumbers were coming but as of this morning I've nit heard the result. My guess is a leak in their sprinkler system.

Got an e-mail from Lina this morning as she proudly announced she was able to install a program I could not install after repeated attempts - good for her! It was the Adobe Flash Player needed to view so many things on the internet and required for some games Lina plays. It would not install for me - it failed after 5 or 6 attempts. I even tried to download the executable onto my machine so I could send it to her's but Adobe won't allow you just to download without installing. Anyway, Lina did it - I know not how - but she did.

I stayed up to after midnight last night working on a project. I didn't need to stay up but time flew by and when I looked up it was 12:15 AM -Jeez! I'll pay for it today but sometimes I get involved in doing something I'm just not aware of time. These "timeless" events I love because I would be aware of the time if I did not like what I was doing. Of course my dogged pursuit of a project is rather common so I'm really not surprised. If it were not for Sally cat I might have gone on even longer.

I've got several things I need to do but I might just wait until Monday and spend the day here with college football. I want to buy a electric indoor grilling device, a headset for use with the word recognition software Kathryn is going to share with me, a big container of round-up for keeping the weeds off the North side of my house, and a battery for one of my watches. I may just wait until Monday after my coffee meeting because none of it needs to be done today. I also need to go to Publix for some fruit and bread - maybe I'll check out the Fresh Market for these items.

A rather big guy came to my back door saying his truck ran out of gas and he needed to get to Sebastian. I may have been born at night but it was not last night - I recognized it for what it was, a scam to get $$. He said he needed $10 so I gave it to him so he'd just go away at which point he asked for $5 more. What? You need $15 worth of gas to get to Sebastian? I declined to give him more at which point he said he'd pay me back - I believe that as much as I believe Obama is a God-fearing, American-loving conservative!!

Posted at 08:40 am in General | Comments (0)

Lina's Computer

Fri 25 September 2009

When I went to pick up Captain Matt's old college computer his mother is using, I discovered it was working ok although a bit slow. It is her inability to access AOL mail that was the problem. After trying all the AOL recommended solutions, I decided to install Firefox to see if it some how was a browser issue - sure enough, Firefox worked perfectly and is faster than internet explorer. My guess is that matt has accumulated a bunch of crap that has attached itself to the IE browser. With a clean fresh install of Firefox I think Lina is good to go until her new machine arrives. Oh did I mention - Matt is buying his mom a new computer.

Yesterday afternoon I stayed away from my computer and other's computers as well choosing to watch some things on TV. I found a foreign movie from Finland that was sub-titled in English so I decided to watch it.It was good enough that I watched the whole thing which often does not happen. Then of course I had to catch FOX News for a few hours - Fox is the only TV news outlet that is not in the tank for Obama. It's dangerous when the media shoves news out through their liberal point of view without telling the whole story or in some cases not telling the story at all. I find it prudent to gather news from more than one source especially if that source is the liberal media reporting from the fringe left.

The South Carolina - Mississippi state game was sooooo boring I had to leave the game. Into the 3rd quarter the score was 9 - 3 ...I like high scoring offensive battles. it turns out the SC won the game beating #4 ranked Mississippi 17 - 10. I hope tomorrow I can find more exciting games to watch including North Carolina vs Georgia Tech in Atlanta at noon. I don't have a clue as to how good either team is really. I'll watch it until and unless I get too much anxiety building up. Why do I get so anxious - it's just a game!

When I woke up this morning I heard a loud whining noise - I mean loud. It turns out my back-up refrigerator in the laundry room was singing like crazy. It certainly looked like I was going to need a replacement until I used that professional fix of opening the freezer door and then hit the back of the freezer with my fist. It worked but for how long? The things that cause noise like this in the first place usually do not get better but rather worse. It's not a big deal - that refrigerator is only used to keep beer, soft drinks, steaks, and ice cream of course. It was the one I bought about 2 years before the big renovation for not a lot of money. Very basic but it servers it's purpose.

Kathrym has offered to give me her Dragon Naturally speaking software for me to use once she noticed I peck on my computers keyboard with one finger - I never learned to type and I've only used a computer for about 6 years. I get along fine but she thinks I could use this voice recognition software when I want to type my posts, e-mails, etc. Of course it would never work for coding but text should work well. actually I tried an older version of this software years ago on my first computer and to my amazement it worked rather well. since then I think the software has gotten better and I probably have a better understanding of how to use it. Maybe I can fetch it fromKathryn today to give me yet another poject.

Posted at 06:59 am in Computer, General | Comments (0)

Vero vs. Atlanta

Wed 23 September 2009

More I learn about the monsoons in Atlanta, the happier I am that I don't live at 900 anymore. It is true to say I really don't miss Atlanta most of the time except two times a year - a few weeks in the Fall with the beautiful leaf changing and a few weeks in the Spring when everything blooms. Florida really doesn't have the dramatic changes in seasons as you find in Atlanta. Nonetheless, this week I'm particularly happy I'm not living in a house with perhaps a few feet of standing water. Unlike flat places like Florida, Atlanta does eventually drain well because it's hilly and water runs downstream. I've been amazed with the video I've seen - there was nothing anywhere close to that in my 41 years living there.

We're having heavy rain this morning but I don't believe it will last all day. The rain is coming from the East which, unless it's a tropical storm, usually doesn't last all that long. The radar shows spotty rain showers moving in but nothing organized. I hope to make it for coffee without getting too wet - I melt don't you know?

When I was out at Starr's house a couple days ago returning John's laptop I repaired so it could ride back to Tallahassee, I need to check something on her computer. Jeez! That desktop is as slow as molasses in the middle of winter! It troughs messages up on boot about updating this or that but when you eventually do get online it takes forever to navigate pages on the internet. Frankly, I don't know how Starr and Alex can tolerate it without trying to fix it to work faster. So I installed Malewarebytes so it would find all the Spyware, adware, browser helpers, and some other nasty things that might be part of the problem. I started the scan but left knowing it would take a couple hours to look deep into the bowels of her computer. When I say Starr yesterday, she said it found nothing! That can not possible be correct, there has to be some bad things on that machine which has not been cleaned in a long time if at all! I'm going to take my laptop and a flash drive I have with all sorts of repair tools on it out there to see what I can do.

Did I mention TB and Kathryn went to watch the Florida - Tennessee game this past weekend? They both reported having a good time and the good news is Florida did win. From 1966 through the mid 1980's, I never missed a Georgia Tech home game. Saturdays in the Fall were always a lot of fun going and participating with the huge numbers of fans at Grant Field. But as time passed, my interest in going to games passed too - I guess it's part of that old fart thing. Even so, there is nothing like actually being at a game for fun and excitement.

John has been to some Florida State games but I don't sense the excitement and enthusiasm for the game like that which TB & I have. Maybe this will come once he's actually going to classes at FSU rather than the community college he's attending now. The more he lives in and among FSU students, the more the excitement he'll sense about the games - at least that's what I think. Time will tell.

Today I'm showing one of the latest pictures I got from Syp 7 Sjak of their cute son, Yari. Doesn't he look so sweet and innocent? Well let me tell you, his Daddy could look sweet and innocent too while a real devilish of a active boy was hidden inside. Click on the picture for a bigger image.

Posted at 08:44 am in General | Comments (0)

Atlanta Flooding

Tue 22 September 2009

Many of you boys and girls may not know this but Atlanta has had a down pour of rain causing flooding all over the city. Some of you have asked about my old house up there on Peachtree Battle circle which never flooded in the 34 years I lived there but did come with about 6". Well, I sold my house at the worst possible time in the horrible real estate market in December of 2007 - that's the bad news. The good news is I don't live there now because I'm 100% positive it flooded - I just don't know how many inches or feet of water came into my lower level. I'm guessing about 20" - 30" based on the reports I read in the Atlanta Journal.

Peachtree Creek - The creek's 4:45 a.m. measurement at Atlanta was 19.87 feet. The creeks crest Monday of 23.89 feet was surpassed only a crest of 25.8 feet in 1919. Flood stage is 13 feet, and anything above 20 feet is a major flood.

It was never a mater of if my house would flood but rather when it would flood. I'm sure the guys have flood insurance but nonetheless the house will never be the same - mold, smells, weakened foundation, etc. I'm going to attempt to find out just what did happen so I can report back. Right now I'm suffering under blue a blue sky with a few white puffy clouds here and there.

Click on today's image for a very revealing video.

About 1:30am this morning a car went by my house with his boom box blasting so loud that it woke me up thinking my surround sound stereo had come on at a high level. I tried to turn it off with my remote but it wasn't even on. Rarely do I hear the street at night..in fact, almost never. My house is very well insulated but this was outrageously loud - I can't even imagine what it sounded like outside. I'm sure the ass caused a lot of folks to wake up - I hope the police nabbed his worthless butt.

For the past several days I've been working on a news publishing system for Kathryn's new website. I searched and search until I found a few systems that could work for her, where not too expensive, and were easy to use - by her own admission, Kathryn doesn't understand much at all about websites much less editing and news publishing. I tried one system but it just didn't get the job done. I tried another that worked but it would have been very difficult and time consuming to edit and/or re-write the code to suit her needs. I did find one that seemed perfect.

The time I've been spending is on the installation and editing to fit into her pages. I also had to set up a SQL database with the proper users and passwords. There was a slight flaw which I tried to fix yesterday but ended up crashing the whole installation - I was going to have to start all over. having learned from crashes in the past, I had the system backed up on my local machine so I thought I could just reinstall the files. No go - I caused a "fatal error" in the database permissions that could not be fixed thus requiring a whole new installation. But wait, the "plain" news_index.php still worked so I said to myself - self, why not edit the page that does work with the code from the page that did not work with a PHP call function. I started at about 4 am and by 6 am I got it fixed - not the way intended but very functional all the same. I even found a solution to the problem that caused me to crash the news publishing program in the first place. Yea!!

Posted at 09:50 am in General | Comments (0)

Computer Repair

Thu 17 September 2009

Where have I been you ask? Well, I've been working on computer issues for John and Lina - when I get started on a project I like to keep on going until I get it resolved or I've gone as far as I can with the tools I have.

John's machine was blocked from getting to the internet by some nasty viruses and a Trojan. Because John's in Tallahassee it is a bit more challenging than working on his computer if he was here. With my TeamViewer application I can work on John's machine but often I would need to reboot after certain cleaning, scanning, etc which up until now meant he would have to be next to his machine to 'allow' me back in. Then I discovered a way to remotely reboot his computer and still have access without John being there - his busy social schedule would not be interrupted while I slaved over his machine.

I needed certain utilities to do y work but without internet access with his browser, I could not download them. No worries - TeamViewer provides a file transfer utility as part of the application so I could send the needed utilities from my computer without browser functionality. After working with HijackThis and installing a maleware scanner I got his computer working again except for his wireless adopter - he now needs to be hard-wired to a router. This sent me into extensive research with the hope of identifying the problem which I did. It seems his Windows Zero Configuration, which is needed to "discover" wireless networks wasn't even in his services - the application was gone! It used to be there so my only explanation is one of the Trojans deleted it. Just Damn! I'd need his computer to work on it more so I suggested he go to the computer help shop at Florida State. At the very least I'd need to boot his computer from the Windows operating system CD then replace the missing application. At worst we will need to reinstall Windows. Stay tuned.

John's problems pail in comparison to Lina's (Barnes boys mom) problems - her computer gets a BSOD just after boot.Without it even booting, I brought the computer to my computer lab to work on it on Wednesday. I did a bunch of research but to let you know just how bad it is, I even get a BSOD in the safe mode for God's sake - the machine would not boot at all. So I put the Windows operating CD in the machine and booted from it and on the first try I was able to get into the machine via the safe mode. Having my astute presences of mind, the first thing I did is download her entire "My Documents" file to a flash drive. Windows delivered a message that the services & registry where broken but it lead me to believe the CD fixed it so I rebooted again without the CD - it crashed. I booted it again with the CD - this time it crashed. I could no longer get into the machine nor would it allow my to reinstall Windows!!! My last hope was to see if the BIOS was corrupt so I was able to get into the BIOS and restore it to factory defaults. I booted - it crashed.

This computer has run it's life span - I think it is time to go to the big computer graveyard in the sky. Any further effort to fix it would likely cost almost as much as a new machine. I think I know what Matt, Drew, and Ty can give their mother for Christmas!

Have you noticed that it is getting darker earlier and the sun comes up later each day? That's ok, it should be that way this time of the year. Oh, of course I need to mention Georgia Tech plays Miami on national TV tonight in Miami - I'm afraid Miami has a powerful offence which Tech will not be able to stop. Georgia Tech does have a chance to win if they figure out there are two halves to each game, not one!

Posted at 01:15 pm in Computer, General | Comments (0)

John's Computer

Mon 14 September 2009

Yesterday I worked on John's computer from about 3 in the afternoon until 9 last night. I was able to do that because I've found AC way of remotely rebooting his machine and then connect anew with TeamViewer - what a useful program. It turns out that John didn't go to Atlanta and because I couldn't logon to his computer Saturday morning I thought he did. What happened was when I went to reboot a program was opened - the Task Manger - that would not close so the machine never rebooted. It wasn't until yesterday when John called did we discover the issue - I learn something each time I make a boo boo.

The computer was unusable for internet access because the browsers did not work. This became a problem when I wanted to download a program onto John's computer in order to help me with my repair effort. Problem solved - I downloaded the applications onto my computer and then transferred it to John's computer via the file transfer utility in teamViewer - cool, huh? Research on Saturday pointed me to the most popular Malware scanners used today called Malwarebytes which I installed and started a 'deep' scan that took 2 hours and 35b minutes. The scan found no less than 32 infections all over his machine including the registry. After fixing all the baddies, his computer works again and all the programs are back to functioning as far as I know. However, the wireless adopted is still dead so I'll work on that as soon as the machine is rebooted. Stay tuned.

A new cleaning service came by to look at my house and give me a quote for their service - I declined their service. They first wanted to charge $240 as a 'new client" first time visit then $120/visit there after. My former service was doing a great job for $60/visit so I'm not anxious to double that. They said it would take two people at least 4 hours to clean my house - I think not. This house is kept clean for the most part - I don't live in AV pigpen for God's sake. I'll seek another service.

Got my blood test results for my CBC (complete blood count) to find nothing was out of the norm. That's good to know but I still have this tired/fatigue issue but the good news is Adderall helps. This morning I had an appointment with Dr. Director ending in no changes in dosage of Adderall but rather in the type I use - he's switched me off the extended release version and back to instant release as needed - one in the morning, one in the afternoon, and one in the middle if needed. I found that around 11 AM, my energy seemed about the same with a 20mg Adderall XL as a 10mg of IR. The end result is I might find myself taking less total dosage during a day but he left it up to me to continue my testing of me, the lab rat.

On Sunday before John called I watched the downloaded movie, The Man from Earth - I think that was the name. It was not full of action but rather took place in a cabin with a group of people one of which claimed to be 14000 years old. It was interesting but not great.

How do you like my banner?.

Posted at 01:13 pm in General | Comments (0)

Happy Birthday Drew

Sun 13 September 2009

Brother Drew is celebrating his hatch-day with friends and family in Atlanta this weekend - I think he's 40, no....probably 30. I remember him from the time he can't remember me - gosh how kids grow up so fast. It didn't seem like it was fast when I was trying to grow up (but failed) however it seems fast to me now that I'm an old fart. Anyway, I bet the rowdy group of partiers went out for a big time last night - I expect I'll get reports later. I even think John might have gone to Atlanta this weekend to join the party but I've not heard from him although he said he'd call.

I think it might be time for Drew to retire and move back to Vero and become a world-class flats boat fisherman... you know, compete in tournaments and such. On the other hand, it would be even cooler if he became a treasure hunter and found some exciting stuff like Spanish gold coins for example. I'm not sure how excited his Dad would be about such a change but if he struck it big, I'm positive pops would be very happy for him - me too.

College football yesterday was just simply fabulous! I watched several games flipping from one channel to the next - there were so many close and exciting games to watch. What I liked was all the high-scoring games with the ultimate winner having just a few points more than the loser - I don't like watching blowouts like the Florida - Troy State game. I could talk about all the games but the one game though really stood out was the Western Michigan - Michigan State game were Michigan State was the favorite. When it came down to the end of the game with 33 seconds left, Western Michigan scored a touchdown making the score 28 - 27 in favor of Michigan State. The WM team decide to go for two extra points to win the game rather than a sue one extra point to tie the game sending it into overtime. It was a gutsy call with a "we can win" attitude but alas they missed the extra point try.

Now with 33 seconds left, WM had to kick to MS but they kicked an onside kick and got the ball back on the MS 45 yard line. With only seconds left, the WM field goal kicker was going to try a field goal longer than he'd ever kicked - he missed the field goal but he got a do-over because MS was offside bringing the ball 5 yards closer to the goalposts and this time the kicker nailed the field goal - Western Michigan beat the higher ranked Michigan State team 30 - 28. What an exciting game to watch especially the way the WM team demonstrated they came to win with that missed extra point attempt. I think I was excited for WM team as much as they were excited - Michigan State fans were shocked and dumbfounded losing in their own stadium - now you know why I love college football.

Since my last post, John's computer has not been fixed - it can not access the internet. It is impossible to work on a machine remotely unless there is someone standing by to reboot as needed which is often the case when I'm trying to fix something. Then I discovered I can actually reboot remotely with TeamViewer if the utility is set up properly on both machines. I was to work on his computer this weekend but John did not bother to turn it on so I could - he may have gone to Atlanta and taken it with him. Nonetheless, he could have connected in Atlanta but he did not. Oh well, he's the one without a functioning computer, not me! I can only try to help when he decides to turn his machine on so I guess he doesn't think it is important enough to do so now.

Posted at 08:34 am in General | Comments (0)

What a Game!

Fri 11 September 2009

Last night I was experiencing mass anxiety during the second half of the Georgia Tech - Clemson game. Holy orangutan dodo batman - I get really worked up with games like this one. I do love close games with a lot of scoring except when it comes to Georgia Tech - then I just want the team to get ahead by a touchdown or two and stay ahead. Last night was a nail-biter for me although that field goal with 56 seconds left made things a whole hell of a lot better. The final score was 30 - 27.

What happened to Tech in the second half? I hope this is not a preview of what's to come. Next week Tech plays powerful Miami and then a couple weeks after that they play Florida State - the two offensive powerhouses in the ACC. The Yellow Jackets' 30-27 win over Clemson was not as consistently riveting, or competitive, from start to finish as Monday's win by Miami at Florida State, but it packaged perhaps as much drama.

Late yesterday afternoon up until about 30 minutes of the Tech game I was working on John's laptop via my remote computer control software. That software called Team Viewer is really cool unless you have to reboot which means you lose the connection and in order to reconnect, you need a new password because the software things it's a new session. Anyway, I got his Internet Explorer to work again but broke his wireless adaptor in some way - I have no clue. The adapter's software says it's working properly and in the network connection tabs it indicates a strong signal. The problem is that when I try to connect wirelessly Windows says it can't find any wireless networks when the computer is right next to one.

This adopter was working prior to a system restore - using system restore should not break it. I even uninstalled the adopter and reinstalled but that didn't work either. To make hatters worse, just before I was going stop and try again today, the laptop got infected with one of those damn Trojans that stars scanning your computer and hijacks your browser - one like Lina, Matt, and I got. Fortunately having learned on Lina's computer I was able to kill it or at least it seems that way - I won't really know until we boot up today and I check things out. Hopefully John will boot up this morning and give me control so I can work on it today.

Posted at 08:38 am in Computer, General | Comments (0)

New Blood Work

Thu 10 September 2009

I just got from having the lab vampires suck some blood out of my body for testing. No, it was not ordered by a doctor but rather by me using an online testing service I've used before. A long time a go in a galaxy far far away when I was in the insurance business, I discovered that a whole hell of a lot of information can be gleaned from blood work - underwriters told me just how valuable this tool was in assessing risk. I was also told that any given test could show values out of the 'norm' and not necessarily be bad - it is very useful to compare the reads from tests you get over the years to see if a trend can be identified.

So why did I order the test you ask - because a CBC (complete blood count) test will give clear data which can help in diagnosing chronic fatigue issue I have. Basically I may not have enough of this or that which is important in giving one energy. When I get the test back I will not know what it necessarily, but I will be able to see if all the readings are in the 'norm' and if not, I'll call my doctor. I should get the results in a few days.

The folks at Amazon movie rental were of course too smart to allow users to simply copy a movie - my rental went dead yesterday afternoon. So I checked the copy I had on a external hard drive on my desktop and still no go. The movie file is a simple .wmv file but it has coding in it that requires a license before it runs. The license is obtained from the online vender - Amazon - which gives a video player from working without an 'ok' from home. I forget the name of this system but I've read about it before. Oh, well.

Yesterday I ordered an inexpensive wireless keyboard and mouse with the idea of connecting my auxiliary Dell Optimax to my TV and leaving it connected. I could place the machine out of site behind my TV and use it to run movies whenever I want or actually surf the internet as I'm watching TV. I probably will not set this up right away but I couldn't pass up the keyboard sale in case I did want to use it.

John called me yesterday saying his browser would not open a page even though he was connected to the internet - his browser was sick. After trying a few standard thins, I suggested a system restore to a point when it was working. John uninstalled Norton antivirus from his computer and it seems that is about the time the browser stopped working. Norton is a real bitch to uninstall and I'm thinking that was the issue causing the problem like maybe some browser protection that was removed but left the browser permanently protect? John was a virgin to system restore but I walked him through it and the laptop said it was completed. Now we have a new problem - his wireless contention stopped working so there was no way to tell if the browser started working? So today he's going to use an Ethernet connection rather than wireless by going to his neighbor's apartment - John & David do not have their own ISP set up yet. So if the browser works, I'll hopefully be able to logon from here and see if I can fix the wireless service or perhaps make his machine totally un-useable. He's to call me sometime today - stay tuned.

About Obama's long speech last night I want to make one comment for now. Does Obama really think Americans are so dumb as to believe you can add tens of millions to Obamacare and it not cost anymore than it does now? He said his plan would not add to the deficit - I don't think even the far left radical liberals believe that! So if he's lies about that, what else in his plan are also lies? And does anyone really believe he will not cover illegal aliens in this country? Give me a break - the whole speech was full of lies and Obama looked angry when he gave it.

,p>Tech plays tonight at 7:30 on ESPN - be there!
Posted at 10:18 am in General | Comments (0)

Sever Problems

Wed 09 September 2009

Yesterday morning started off bad for me when I went to post my morning pearls of wisdom and general bull. I got a 500 error saying I did not have access to my site on the internet - what's up with that? I contacted the folks hosting my site because a 500 error is a server side error. They fixed it on their end but then when I went to BillsView.com, I got a 403 - Access Denied" error...now what? Contacting the host again they said they could see me site fine and when I used a proxy, I could see my site fine. This happened before but my solution was to change my IP which should have given me a clue.

There is a file in the root directory of my site called .htaccess according to the server people they suggested as a possible cause. OK, how do I find it? It turns out you have to change some settings to see 'hidden' files just like you do in Windows - did you know there are a ton of hidden files in Windows? Anyway, this file had over 200 IP addresses in it including mine so I removed my IP and presto, I could get to BillsView. Now the mystery to me is how did these IP Addresses get there in the first place - I've never even opened the file. When I asked that question of my host, they told me to send an e-mail to "abuse" at the firm that actually owns these big servers. I have gotten a response from them yet. Me smells a rat!

Now this morning as I was opening my e-mails, Sally Cat came and sat next to my keyboard but managed to sit on the hotkey that deletes the e-mail in my 'new mail' folder and she did it before I read my e-mail or in fact before I saw who even sent me mail over night. Frankly the majority of the e-mails I get suggest I need to enlarge a certain body part or take pills to enlarge it on demand - not needed at least not yet. So I'm not too concerned about what got deleted but nonetheless I wanted to see if I could find them. No such luck. I ran a 'recovery' program I have on a flash drive which found hundreds, nay thousands of deleted files but not my e-mails. I could sort the files by date so there really many deletion this morning just after boot. There are programs that can recover Outlook or Outlook Express mail but not Pegasus mail - I use Pegasus because of it's flexibility, options, and security. Oh, well!

Yesterday I checked my rented movie discovering it is set to expire this afternoon - 3 days from the time I first watched it. Now it will be interesting to see if it gets deleted - I think it will disappear. The real question is will the copy I put on an external hard drive also go away - I think not. Report to follow tomorrow.

Posted at 11:21 am in General | Comments (0)

Matt's Laptop

Tue 08 September 2009

Did you see that game last night between Miami and Florida State? That was a great game full of lots of offense and to my surprise, Miami won. I think I heard this was the first time in 20 years Florida State lost their home opener - a streak can't last forever. What scares me is that Georgia tech has to play both of these teams in the net 30 days and from what I saw last night, Georgia Tech will have a tough time. First, Tech has to beat Clemson on Thursday night and that is not a given.

Yesterday I was cooking a hamburger on the stove when the phone rang so I answered it. In the meantime, the burger began to smoke a bit but by no means was it burned. However it set off my smoke detector that calls home unless it was disarmed - damn what a really loud sound goes off after it chirps loudly for awhile. This had never happened before so I was not 100% how the hell to stop it. The only thing I could do is put in my security code and that seemed to work. I got a message 'call failed" because I put in my code while the system was calling home. What a way to find out the alarm works, huh? BTW, it really didn't take much smoke at all to set it off - it has a low thrush hold for triggering the alarm.

All morning and part of the afternoon I worked on Captain Matt's laptop - it was slow and he thought infected as well. First I went through his startup list and disabled about half of the programs starting at boot that do not need to be running every time the computer is on. It took me awhile to check everything on the list because I didn't know what the applications did or if they were necessary.

I was told there was an infection but I could not find it using my handy HijackThis tool although I did find things that needed to be eliminated. Upon rebooting the machine on the third time an alert from Matt's antivirus program said there was an infection - the same infection Matt has been talking about but it did not show it's evil face until my third boot. When I told the AV program to fix it, the program said it couldn't because it could not find the virus although it was there at one point - this suggests the virus - a Trojan in this case - mutates after booting to try to stay hidden.

I had to get deep down into the bowels and hidden files on the laptop - files that should not normally be available. Sure enough, the virus was not where it once was. But the AVG alert also mentioned another "legitimate" executable in the Pre-fetch fold - executables are not suppose to be in a pre-fetch at all! Although it had a legitimate name, dwwin.exe , it was trying to spoof users. You see, the "legitimate" application came with the computer and therefore should not have a date of September 1 of this year - I found the rat and deleted it. I also found two other executables in Matt's temporary fold - why are there executables in a temporary fold especially ones have the same date as the nasty I just trash? I got rid of them and about 6 other files with the same time stamp all of which where either empty or very small.

I think I fixed the problem but I'm really not sure - these Trojans are very sneaky but I think I got the "mother ship" as it were when I found the one in pre-fetch. So I moved on to defrag the machine that was in such a mess it looked like it had not been defraged for a very long time. The process took over two hours and still was not complete - Matt had to leave so he can finish the process in Atlanta. Same goes for the Disk Clean-up it too was still working as Matt had to leave.

I like doing this stuff - it's actually fun for me. God I'm a real geek, huh? Don't answer that!

Posted at 01:11 pm in General | Comments (0)

It Worked!

Mon 07 September 2009

Holly sh*t batman - it worked! Yesterday I decided to watch my $1 movie on my big screen with a feed from my computer. It was easy to set up because all the connections are in place. When I started the movie in the Amazon player, it started as it should but when I connected my laptop to my TV it didn't work. I tried it a couple of times but no go. Well, I was not going to let that stop me so I opened the movie in my Windows Media Player and shazam it worked beautifully. I did have to drag my WMP screen wider so it would fill my TV screen but it was no probem - it played perfectly.

The quality was at least as good as any digital signal I get from DirectTV or perhaps even better than a signal from the satellite. But it was not as good as an HD movie but then again, this was not a HD file. I think to play HD from a download you might need an HD player interface like Blue-Ray - I'll do some research. Now the question is will the movie "expire" in some fashion after 3 days - the Amazon player says I have three days of viewing from the time I first viewed. So it will be interesting to see if the Amazon play automatically erases it after 3 days or not. No worries, I copied it to an external hard drive away from my laptop and out of the reach of the Amazon Player. I may need the player to download the movie in the first place but I'm not even sure about that. I've got to do some more research on that aspect as well.

I'm most pleased with this new movie system I've discovered and I'm 100% positive I'll use it again. In fact, I'll look for a movie to download for future viewing this morning so I'll have it. It takes 30+ minutes to download the file.

While I was researching this whole system in the first place I went to a lot of websites for information. One site offered trailers of movies before you actually download a movie - this site did not sell or rent movies, just the trailers. Well I clicked on one and the windows download notification popped up wanting me to download a file. Immediately my radar came up telling me this was not right - usually you click on a movie and it plays automatically without a download. I decided to download the file but when I opened the file I used my Sandboxie tool to isolate what ever I was opening. My radar was correct - it was a Trojan that my antivirus alerted me to right away.

Once I got the name of the virus I found it was a nasty one from Russia packed in an executable called sysguard.exe. This was among the same sort of infection I found on Lina's computer but a lot easier for me to eliminate because it was isolated in Sandboxie and had not installed. I deleted all the files then ran HijackThis where I found 3 browser helpers to eliminate as well. All seems just fine now after I did a complete system scan that took about 90 minutes. The moral of the story is one should use a program like Sandboxie to open any file that might be suspicious. I can see why so many innocent users get infected.

Captain Matt came by yesterday afternoon for a visit and to help me with my Crown before it goes bad if it weren't for Matt, John, Drew. and a few others, the Crown would spoil. We talked about football, computers, and his new I-Phone - that phone is cool and if I wanted a cell phone, that would be it. He's having a bit of a computer problem so he dropped his laptop here last night so I can have a look at it this morning without making it totally unusable! Well, he did say he wants a newer, faster, shinier laptop so if I break it all together that wouldn't be all so bad.

Posted at 07:35 am in General | Comments (0)

Tech Wins

Sun 06 September 2009

Wouldn't you know it - when it was time to watch the Tech game on my big screen through my computer, I was in the middle of doing some work on my desktop. So I just watched it on my laptop while working on a project thus I don't have a report as to how well it worked. The laptop was great. It was very good that Tech won 37 - 17 but I've not got an opinion as to how good or bad Georgia Tech will be this year. The game Thursday night against Clemson on ESPN's Thursday Night College Football may give me a better idea. Needless to say, a win is a win.

Of course I watch parts of several other games on DirectTV - there were a lot of options some of which were very obscure teams. Some of these games didn't look any different than a high school game in a small stadium with low attendance - of course they were small schools as well. But you know what, I like watching some of these smaller schools for the same reason I like little league over the pros - they are being played for fun and not for national recognition. There are 3 more games on today.

When watching the Alabama - Virginia Tech game last night, I noticed 100% of Alabama's defense on the field were black players. I'm guessing the reason is the black players are a lot better than their white counterparts - I've not got a problem with that at all. My purpose inn mentioning it is I believe the best person for a job should get the job without respect to race, color, sexual orientation, national origin, political views, etc. I do not believe in quotes. If it were the other way around, you can bet the race-baiting warlords would be screaming racism. Have you noticed the media, liberals, and race warlords thing 'racism' can only be against evil white folks but never the other way around? I'm just saying...

So what got my attention yesterday other than the games you ask? Well I got an e-mail from Georgia Tech - which I get weekly or more during football season - with an offer about getting movies from Blockbuster via mail like Netfilx has done for years so I followed the link with the $8.99/mo. offer. While poking around the Blockbuster site I discovered they do streaming movies online so I thought I'd look into that which lead me to research the hardware needed. Their are boxes you can get for your TV for about $100 but why get a box in the first place I ask? Further research lead me to conclude you don't need a box if you can connect your computer to a TV or simply watch it on your computer monitor. It appears the box is for folks without a computer or folks with a computer but no clue as to how to connect it to a TV.

Then I discovered that Amazon rents movies online on a pay per movie bases but the fees start at $.99 - for me I'd be better off just paying for what I want when I want it. Amazon says I needed to install their "viewer" which I did then I down loaded a movie I wanted to watch for $.99 - I've not actually watched it yet but what I found is it is a simple .wmv file that should play on any video player that accepts .wmv files without the need of Amazon's viewer. Me thinks the Amazon viewer may have a mechanism that will delete the move three days after it's first viewing - you can watch the movie anytime or anywhere without an internet connection.

The movie was downloaded in about 30 minutes - it is about 3GB I think. The files was hidden but of course I know how to find hidden files so I did. When I discovered it was a .wmv file I transferred a copy to one of my external hard drives so the Amazon player would not delete it. That's all I know now - more to come. Jeez I'm a geek, huh?

Posted at 08:46 am in General | Comments (0)

College Football Saturday

Sat 05 September 2009

The game last night on ESPN between Kentucky and #1 ranked LSU was great - it was high scoring and went into triple overtime. I guess LSU will not be ranked #1 when the polls come out on Monday because Kentucky beat them 42 - 37 (or something like that.) I hope to see other great games starting at noon today. Georgia Tech plays at 1pm on ESPN 360 so this will be the first time I'll really check out using my big screen TV as a monitor for the game streaming on the internet. There are several games I'm interested in watching but I'm not sure which ones I'll like. Defensive battles are boring - I like high scoring games.

As I'm typing this post this morning, the Barnes - Brennan dudes are headed up to just North of Melbourne, Florida where a long time friend of Mary Ann and Tommy, Reed Knight, has his arms manufacturing plant. They'll take a tour of the factory and perhaps even have the opportunity to fire some weapons including automatic assault rifles. I've owned and fired an AK-47 on full automatic mode and it's a real hoot! My interest in doing that stuff now has waned substantially but I can tell you it was fun when I did it.

I say Reed on the Military channel on TV when a documentary was made about his newest bestest [sic] sniper rifle. Up until now, the assault rifles used by US Military forces needed to be reloaded after every shoot - this one is semi-automatic. What's the big deal you ask? Apparently up until now previous versions of a semi-automatic sniper rifle were not accurate after the first shot - these rifles moved too much reducing accuracy or extending the time needed to aim again. Reed's hot new rifle can rapidly fire with the same accuracy of a single shot rifle - cool, huh? I'll be anxious to hear about their tour later today.

Kevin & Kimper dropped by yesterday after going for breakfast at 11pm - you don't want to get up too early do you? They're doing great and are here for the Labor Day weekend. I fear that the Barnes Estate - West will be party central after the crowd returns from the tour and start watching football games this afternoon. Me thinks there just might be some beer consumption but I'm not sure. I may go out later in the afternoon to see if anyone needs rescuing by someone who likely will not be drinking beer - me!

I like Kimper & Kevin together. As soon as Kimper can make enough money to support Kevin in the style he'd like to become accustomed, they might decide to keep this arrangement up. Kimper can go to work each day and Kevin can play golf after he wakes up at 11am and has breakfast - sounds like a good arrangement to me. But who really knows what tomorrow will bring - I'm not sure what I'll do for the rest of this morning before football starts at noon!

On Wednesday of this coming week I have an appointment with a guy who runs a cleaning service - he was recommended by someone in my coffee klatch. I want to explain what I want done about every two weeks and see what he'll charge. I know how looking it takes because I've been having it done for 18 months by my other service. Besides, my house is not and does not get dirty although there is Sally cat hair everywhere. The guy says he's a 'green' cleaning company which is fine with me as long as his products get the job done. We shall see.

Pictured today is the neon sign made for my office.

Posted at 08:24 am in General | Comments (0)

Football has Begun

Fri 04 September 2009

Another busy day yesterday with places to go and things to do. We had our monthly business meeting after coffee yesterday and for the most part, what we talked about could have waited another month to get resolved which is why I like quarterly meetings. But, the majority voted to do monthly so that's where we are. The good news is the meeting was brief so that's a good thing IMHO.

Whated a fairly good movie about conmen who inter at the end were coned by the head conman. I didn't see that coming. The plot really did build and build until the very end of the movie then all was revealed - I like these type of movies. It got a bit slow in the middle but it was worth the waiting. I've not got a clue what the name of the movie was but it did have actors I recognized - the main character was played by Vince Vaughn.

I went to the neighborhood watch meeting last night and for the most part did not learn anything I didn't already know. It could be useful to some folks but I'm already doing the stuff the police officer suggested -motion sensitive lights outside, looked windows & doors, alarm system, solid doors, etc. I bet I may be one of the very few people in my hood with an alarm system. I thought I might learn something about activity in my neighborhood and I did - mostly minor break-ins from time to time. There will be another meeting next month on guns and the legal use of guns - I think I'll go back for that.

After the meeting I came home to watch the NC State - South Carolina game on TV - I loved watching new college football. The game was not all that good with a 7 - 3 score - defensive battles are not as good as offensive battles IMO. NC State lost but they might have won if the damn SEC referees would have called a very obvious face mask infraction. It was very obvious - the runner's head was jerked halfway around his body for God's sake. Too bad for NC State.

After that game I watched some of the Oregon - Utah State game but went to bed before it was over. I hate that damn blue field Oregon has - it looks awful. There were 3 other games I could get last night matching Division II teams. Tonight there is at least a couple of games and then comes Saturday College Football. I'm excited.

I used a 'contact form' for one of the sites I built to send an e-mail to the owner yesterday. When you send the mail, you are redirected to a 'thank you' page with a link back to the home page. Well the link was dead and I could not change it because I do not have access to the host's ASP file for sending mail so I sent an e-mail requesting this very, very, very simple change in on URL. Wouldn't you know it - the host's professional coder blew it badly. Not only did he not change the link as requested but he redirected a visitor using the contact form to the owner's old site. Apparently he can't tell the difference between index.html and index.htm!! Not only that, but the expert coder did not understand the ASP contact form well enough to know he now has a 'thank you' message over the top of an old page. He clearly did not test his work or he would have discovered his mistake! Un-excusable!! Then the guy has the audacity to tell us there are some coding errors and for $90/hour he'd fix them? You've got to be kidding - no way I would trust the guy's work or in fact if he's even working on the right site for God's sake. BTW, 99.99% of all sites have some coding errors but that does not stop the site from functioning properly. The analogy is finding a few spelling errors in a article - you still understand the article. Jeez!!

Posted at 09:25 am in General | Comments (0)

College Football Tonight

Thu 03 September 2009

I've been rather busy in the last couple of days and thus have not taken the time to post. Busy with what you ask? I've been learning more about Google's online tools to help website owners to improve their pages and thus their ranking. I stumbled across these "web master" pages while trying to learn how to remove outdated addresses on Google Maps. I've made the Google Map edits but they've not been implemented as yet. So with the new pages I've found, data about my sites (or sites in my account) is readily available including tips to improve the site from Google's stand point. It has been fun and interesting to do this - I love learning new stuff like this.

We've been have rain with thunder and lightening just about everyday and into the night. The other day I was watching TV, it was sunny outside but all of a sudden one of the loudest claps of lightening I ever hear scared me and sent Sally running for cover in some dark corner. It was as loud as the sound when lightening strikes the church steeple across the street. One surprised me the most is there were clear skies outside and the clouds were West of town. This was an example of clear sky lightening I guess.

You know what tonight is of course - the beginning of college football with the NC State - South Carolina game on ESPN at 7 PM. I'll be watching this game and perhaps others with my DirectTV sports package. There are a Loy of games on ESPN 360 as well especially this weekend. Virtually ever ACC game not televised is on ESPN 360. Cool, huh?

At 6 tonight there is a neighborhood watch meeting I plan to attend. I've not got a clue as to what is happening in my hood so this is a way to find out. There will be police there so I can remind them of the Barnes - Brennan invasion this weekend. I believe all the guys will be here as well as Heather.

I've got a potential project coming along so I want to do some research now - always be prepared as TB would say. Plus I've got to go to Wally World to pick up a prescription and purchase so toiletries - although I only bath with soap on Saturdays, I'm running out of soap. When I soak in my tub, I usually do not bother with soap - I like the chlorine smell my body has from the Vero Beach City water supply.

Posted at 10:10 am in General | Comments (0)

Nasty Virus

Tue 01 September 2009

Sunday night Captain Matt called to talk about the computer problem his mom was having and asked if I could help. Hell ya...a geek like me likes this sort of stuff so I went out to Lina's house after coffee Monday morning. She had an infection all right - a real nasty hard to get rid of browser helper among others. This virus would not permit her to surf of internet and was constantly causing pop-ups about infection. It was one of those damn marketers of worthless anti virus programs which try to scare you into buying their product and because you are helpless until you do I'm sure many folks do buy it. It is called Personal Anti Virus and it is anything but!

The damn program would even allow me to download HijackThis to see what was going on until I found a trick. If I tried to open a browser, it would immediately hijack it but if I used a installed program to open a browser, I was able to get to and download HJT. By using an installed program I mean clicking on a home page tap link often found in installed programs. I removed 9 things via HJT, deleted the executable, and then things seem to be ok. Since I've gotten back to the house I've done wore research which leads me to believe there is yet more clean up to do. Have a look at what should be done click here. I'll get with Matt when he gets to town on Friday.

You know the headache event I was having over the weekend - well it's gone now and in fact was almost gone on Sunday. It is not fun at all having these bad events but fortunately I can easy the headache with meds. I just wish I knew what caused them so I can stop doing it. Things could be a lot worse - they could be real migraine headaches which they are not at least in the fullest sense of migraine headaches.

For the first time in weeks, I didn't sleep very well last night. I thought I would sleep better than usual because I was really tired. But When Sally Cat came to meow loudly in my near demanding to be petted at about 1 AM, I could fall right back to sleep as usual. So, I used my old tried and true way of falling asleep - I sat in a hot tub of water for about 10 minutes. I gotten to the point where it is routine for me to sit in a hot tub of water about ten minutes before I want to go to sleep - in fact, I'm doing it nightly now. It works like a charm every night - I get in bed and barely hear my head hitting the pillow. Isn't it nice to find a sleep aid that is not a pharmaceutical and is safe? I will say it is a bit addictive - I like it.

Posted at 06:15 am in General | Comments (0)

California Wins

Mon 31 August 2009

The final play-off of the Little League world series was yesterday - the California team that beat Georgia in the semi-finals beat Taiwan 6 - 3 in a great game. Some of the play was as good as you will see anywhere especially the defensive play of California in the top of the 4th inning.The bases were loaded, one out, and the batter hit a ground ball to the short stop. The short stop tagged the run going from second to third base and then through the ball to first base for double out! Awesome playing and the games are over for this year.

While I was trying watch a Saturday Little League game on ABC it was interrupted by the boring Kennedy funeral. Tell me, what's the deal with watching black cars drive from this point to that point very very slowly? I'd love to know just how many TV sets were tuned into the Kennedy Show! I understand some people loved and admired him but I bet most of those folks live in his home state but I bet very few people elsewhere in the country cared about the funeral parade. I still don't get why it was a national event - when has there ever been another show like this except for when a US President dies? As I said yesterday, this will now be the Liberal's new marketing tool for unneeded and unwanted big government further intrusion into our lives!

While waiting to watch Little League I did catch a high school football game on ESPN - two teams in Iowa played each other. You know what was truly amazing? I mean really amazing? Both teams were all white! When was the last time you saw any football game with all white players? The game was not more or less exciting than other games I watched but it certainly was unique. Actually the game was real lop-sided with one team scoring about 50 points more than the other.

Really college football begins this week on Thursday night. There are several games on but the one that interests me the most is the South Carolina at North Carolina State on ESPN in HD. I have no idea as to the strength or weakness of either team so at this point I have no expectation. At noon on Saturday Georgia Tech plays Jacksonville State and I'll be able to see it on ESPN 360. This will be the first time I've actually watched something by connecting my computer to my TV.

John called last night with a computer problem - his computer would not boot and that's a problem. He tried all the steps he knew to try before he called the guru, me! My thought would be to boot in the safe mode and do a system restore but it would not do that. The good news is you can use the F8 key to select boot options and fortunately in Vista system restore was an option - I told him to do that and it worked. I warned John about those nefarious sites he visits so maybe he'll heed my warnings now. I've had to learn a lot of this the hard way!

Posted at 07:14 am in General | Comments (0)

Enough Already

Sun 30 August 2009

Enough already .... I'm sorry for the friends and family of Teddy Kennedy who are mourning his loss - I'm sure many of them are distraught with his death even though it was not unexpected. What I don't get is all the national attention he's getting - he was a Senator but from just one state. Do any of you remember anytime when a Senator has died and received this media attention? He's been treated like he was a US President and not just a professional politician - he's never held a real job.

Does anyone remember he was involved with the death of Mary Jo back in 1973 ? The likely series of events is he got drunk, drove off a bridge, and left Mary Jo in the car to drown - at least I believe it went something like that. He also was perhaps the angriest Senator in the country always yelling and blaming evil conservatives for perceived wrongs. He more than any other politician caused the great divide in Washington amongst politicians especially the never ending hate and angry from the liberals. Perhaps he should be honored but to pretend all America morns his death is simply ludicrous - I'd bet the farm many many more Americans disliked him than liked him. Now let's watch the arrogant liberals use his death as a marketing tool for their dangerous and unwanted policies.

Yesterday I talked about backing up your hard drive and or your documents which fortunately I do. Well I looked into what I might do to recovery my deleted files which lead me to forums talking about recovery. There are software programs that say they can find deleted files and restore them so naturally I wanted to try one. I knew I needed one that did not need to be installed on my computer because that might permanently erase my files. What I did find is a wonderful small utility called Restoration that is only 229 kb in size and can be run from a flash drive. I tried it and damn...it worked! It was one of the few that did not need to be installed and it was free! Shazam!

You know I get this news letter called Windows Secrets, right? It is full of valuable information about operating systems, software, and security. These are the folks that tell me about cool stuff that I pass along to you. The latest cool thing is something called NoScript which is an add-on for Firefox - this thing is cool! This extension automatically blocks JavaScript and Adobe media files on a site-by-site or source-by-source basis, allowing you to override the blocks as needed. NoScript can also thwart clickjacking attempts and other Web nasties. You can create your own 'white list' of sites as you visit them but be protected until you allow the script. I've been using it for several days and thus far I really like it.

There are some minor drawbacks to this Firefox extension - sometimes you are not able to do something on a page until you 'allow' scripts on the page. You also are shown a list of scripts on the page which you can pick and choose the ones you want to block. A lot of the scripts link to other URL's and for the most part are not needed to see the page. The option to temporary unblock is available as well as the option to always block which is the default option. For Firefox users, I think this is a must.

You know what I've been thinking about doing with my 3rd desk top machine? I've been thinking about installing Windows 7 operating system on it as a trial which you can get from Microsoft. The 'trial' is set to expire in 30 days but the news letter above told me how to extend that for 3 more months. Now I want to see if I can split the hard drive leaving XP Pro on one side then put Windows 7 on the other. I think I read somewhere that this may be a problem - I'll look into it.

Posted at 07:59 am in General | Comments (0)

Dermatologist Today

Thu 27 August 2009

A Vero Beach High School classmate asked if I had my senior year picture - I looked and I found it. I was HOT, huh? What the hell happened over the past 40+ years? Could it be the lifestyle I lived...nah! Could it be I was so hot that God had to cool me down...yea, that's it. I was making the world a tough place for other guys - I had to cool down to make it fair for everyone else.

I'm going to my dermatologist this morning for my regular semi-annual visit. I've got a couple of spots I( want him to look at in particular and a couple that are just interesting. I expect that he'll find the two I've found to be keratosis - pre-cancer cells. I tend to get a lot of these type cells. I also have a couple of things I'm not at all sure what's going on but I'll know after my appointment I bet. Also, do you boys and girls remember the reddish areas I got on my face in the Keys this Summer that went away in a couple days? I get these things from time to time so I'll ask about them as well. They don't hurt and usually last just two or three days. What's that all about?

Tom and MaryAnn are back in Atlanta - they both are doing well. I was going to take MaryAnn a piece of that wonderful chocolate-fudge cake with cheesecake in the middle but now that she's in Atlanta I guess I'll be forced to eat it myself. They will be back in September but all the boys are coming un for Labor Day - I'll alter the mothers of Vero to lock up their daughters.

Remember the website I built for the guy here in Vero that is marketing a heath - energy drink? Well he's also involved with a e-mail marketing tool called Talk Fusion and is a principle in the organization. This video e-mail service is the best one I've seen and could be a great marketing tool for business or any groups someone might want to keep informed about this or that like clubs for example. There is a good opportunity to make some serious income through marketing the Talk Fusion program - I'd be happy to put you in touch with Ray so he can fill you in on the opportunities. I see this as a method of making money outside of your normal 9 to 5 job.

Ted Kennedy died and I do feel compassion for his family and friends. I did not agree with his political views at all - no surprise there, huh? In fact, I think he is the root of all this divisive hate when he personally attacked Judge Bork and Jude Thomas during their confirmation hearings. He's the one that went out of his way to make personal attacks on these men and things have been down hill ever since. Before Kennedy's attacks people in Congress could and did disagree but they were not vicious about it until Teddy started it all. Don't you remember how angry Kennedy was all the time? And why is it the Liberals are still angry as hell when they control the Congress and the White House? Have you noticed how full of hate people like Pelosi, Frank, and Reid are? How they hold regular Americans who don't agree with what they are trying to do to us as evil, hateful, dumb asses? Their arrogance is astonishing to me.

I'm working myself up into a tizzy so I'll stop now.

Posted at 06:49 am in General | Comments (0)

Fresh Market

Wed 26 August 2009

Posted at 07:15 am in General | Comments (0)

Georgia Wins Again

Tue 25 August 2009

After listen to Danyl Johnston yesterday I found myself watching similar videos on YouTube for the next couple hours. Gosh there are some really talented young men and woman that come from the daily mundane jobs to perform on a TV talent show and then absolutely blow the audience away. It is really cool to watch their excitement when they are well received. Perhaps I'll surf YouTube a bit again today.

It was a close but GREAT game the Georgia Little League team played yesterday afternoon against Washington. The Washington team got out ahead 1 - 0 early in the game but Georgia tied them about the 3rd inning. Then the Washington team got another run and were leading 2 - 1 in the last inning so it looked as if this game was going into the loss column for Georgia when they were down 2 - 1 in the last inning with 2 outs. But then the team came back as the last batter got a hit bring in 2 runners putting Georgia up 3 - 2 which is how the game ended after Washington was not able to score again . What a game!

Georgia is the number 1 seed in group a as the play-off's continue. I think they'll lose at some point and if I had to guess I would say they'll lost to Southern California. The games continue all week starting again today at noon.

For some reason Comcast blocks e-mails sent to me from my website Billspost.com, I do get mail from BillsView.com without any trouble. The URL BillsPost.com is forwarded to BillsView.com but I do indeed have that site hosted on a server - it is where I do a lot of online testing and where I keep a back-up of BillsView.com. I thought it was the server but it is Comcast causing the problem. I plan on looking into this issue a little later today.

I've been listening to talk radio and watching FOX News a lot of recent - I sort of stopped most of that while in the Keys. There are real serious conflicts between what the leftist liberals want to do to the country and what the country actually wants. Frankly I think a lot of folks are either asleep or don't care what happens but fortunately there are many regular citizens that do care and they are speaking up. It is unbelievable to me that the Liberal Democrats in Congress would try to force this damn Obamacare down the throats of all Americans with only a simple majority in the Senate!!! It would seem logical to me that if the Government is going to take over health care representing about 20% of GDP the Congress would want the 'normal' 60% of the Senate to agree to it - but when are Liberals logical? Of all the evil Socialist - Marxists changes Obama is shoving down our throats, the health care thing is the worst by far. If Obama succeeds in getting this Hugh expensive new entitlement passed, we are in a lot of trouble - I mean a lot! I'm scared and you should be too.

Posted at 09:05 am in General | Comments (0)

Danyl Johnston

Mon 24 August 2009

Do you feel it? Do you have this sense that the Summer is about to end? I do. For me the official end of Summer is Labor Day weekend and the beginning of college football. I almost always live in anticipation of one or two months ahead for where I am at the time - the things that keep me in the present are events like Little League play-off's. BTW, the play-off's continue today and for most f this week I believe.

Well John is gone - he left yesterday to head off to college in Tallahassee. I'm sure as hell going to miss him but I can not over emphasize how so very pleased I am he's decide to go away to college. The experiences he will have and friendships he will make will likely be a major influence on his life from here on out. If you live in the same town in which you grew up and attend college, you have the same friends and experiences as in high school. I'm looking forward to hearing about the discoveries that are ahead for John.

My view on this 'away to college' thing is of course very screwed based on my own experiences. The people I met, the things I learned, and experiences I had in college shaped my life and made me the wonderful, loveable cool guy I am today. You boys and girls do remember that I went to work for the same firm my fraternity brother, Carey Brown, did right out of school. Carey and I worked together, became partners, grew or own firm and participated in many many Georgia Tech events together. Although I'm self-unemployed now Carey carries on the tradition back in Atlanta.

On a different subject...you guys know how impressed I get when I see ordinary people do extraordinary things, right? Well over the weekend I hear about Danyl Johnston's performance on that British talent show with Simon Crowell. After the performance, Crowell declared Danyl's performance the best 'first audition' he's seen in the 8 years he's been doing this - of course I had to immediately find it on YouTube and I did. This kid is indeed amazing: Danyl Johnston .

I heard from my lawn care guy about the website I built for him - he said he likes it. You never know if someone will like what I build but it's nice when they do. He wants to add some more pictures and a 'contact us' form on his 'Contact' page. I can do that of course but the issue is trying to find a "free host" that handles PHP - the language I use for all my contact forms. Most "free" sites are bare bones when it comes to anything except some free server space - almost no support or any bells & whistles. I have to add, what do you expect for free? Anyway, I've done my research and just may have found the best free hosting site on the internet. I'll have to do more digging into the site which is my plan for this morning. I want the site to be free because I want to give this site to James in a bundle at no charge.

Posted at 08:58 am in General | Comments (0)

John's off to School

Sun 23 August 2009

Yesterday Steve came to detail my car as scheduled - I think I'm going to like his work. We had to move my car out of the carport so he could get his truck an trailer in my driveway without it sticking out into the street. We moved my car under the shade of the oak tree and parallel to the road as you can see in today's picture. He spent about 3 hours on the car and except for his pressure washer everything he did was by hand. He put the wax on and took it off with elbow grease not a polisher. He paid attention to detail both inside and outside my car. The leather inside was cleaned without leaving film. He said he was a perfectionist in his work and from what I can see thus far, I tend to agree.

He suggested that my car should be detailed 4 times a year here in Florida instead of the 2 times a year I was doing in Atlanta,. He suggested the sun, heat, and salt air takes a toll on a car more so than in Atlanta. But then I don't leave my car in the sun or by the sea most of the time - it stays in my carport. Well I'll decide what I want to do in 3 or 4months - I might just follow his suggestion. I've found that detailing a car and keeping to maintained adds years to it's life.

There were Little League games on all day starting at noon ass there will be today too. I'm pleased to report the team from Georgia won yet another game and like the one on Friday, they won rather impressively. Georgia has had one heck of a powerful offense up until now - I hope they can keep it going. Georgia has today off I think as they move onto the next round. I'll be watching.

John came by last night to visit, help me out with the Crown I have that's going bad, and watch a bit of Little League with me. He's getting ready to head to school later on today I think so it was time for my talk on going to college. I really expect this to be a great experience for John - going away to college is a lot different than living at home. You leave all the comforts of home, friends, family, etc behind and move to where you know few people, have to do your own laundry, and feed yourself - I'm 100% certain John will adapt.

My suggestion was for him to experience any and every thing he could at college that was not illegal or immoral ...well, not too immoral at least. And I said always remember - Words have meaning and actions have consequences! What he says and does can no longer be dismissed as just some dumb teenager moves - he is accountable for his life and the decisions he makes now will influence his future immensely. I am wise and know all things so I hope John is listening. We are going to have to work on his procrastination syndrome.

Posted at 09:34 am in General | Comments (0)

Car Detailing

Sat 22 August 2009

As many of you know, I love poached eggs - it is the very best way to have an egg with the possible exception of Mary Ann's deviled eggs. So I've tried to poach eggs the old fashion way by putting an egg into a pot of boiling water. You know what happens of course - the egg sort of shreds itself. I have tried the vinegar in the water trick but the egg still falls apart. Well yesterday I went to Bed, Bath, Beyond, and Expensive where I discovered a little Teflon device that will hold 3 eggs for poaching - actual picture posted. You put it into boiling water, cover for about 4 minutes, and you get great poached eggs - I had my first this morning. Why did I wait so damn long to buy a device like this?

In about two hours I'm having a guy come over to detail my car here at the house - he is a mobile come-to-your-house service. I found Steve through a referral from James my lawn care guy - they are cousins. The last time I detailed was at the place where I have my car washed - they did a good job but left an oily slipper film on my leather inside. I think they used some sort of spray on cleaning fluid and not good leather polish as I would prefer. So I decided to give Steve a try and this time I will be here to irritate him while he's working. If things go well (and I think they will) he will be my detail guy from now on. Not only will he come to me but his fees are lower than the car wash - less overhead when you have one guy, a pressure washer, and a truck.

Yesterday I worked on my lawyer in Atlanta who's site I've edited and upgraded adding pages and a new look. He's happy because he's moved from the bottom of page 3 in Google's ranking to the middle of page two. He credits all that to me of course because he wasn't moving until I came on the scene. It is true I've done things in an effort to move him up but I believe his active participation in this effort has been a real key. He's provide new text so I could make two new pages and he has given me text to expand on the pages he already has. I know that one of the key parts in Google's algorithm for ranki9ng is unique text-rich pages and a site that updates and changes the pages.

My task today is to figure out how to remove old addresses and telephone numbers from Google Maps - the Atlanta law firm moved. I've discovered you need a Google account and then there are steps we can try to change the info in Google's data base. I've set up the account this morning but I'm awaiting the PIN from Jamie that Google sent to activate the account. Once I get that, I can move ahead into unexplored areas of Google.

Of course I've been watching the Little League play-off's on TV. Yesterday there were 4 games and I watched most of two of them including Georgia's win to move up the elimination ladder. There will be games today including Georgia again playing another team that also won yesterday. I'm still two weeks away from the first college football Saturday.

Posted at 09:22 am in General | Comments (0)

TV- Computer

Thu 20 August 2009

So I got my 3rd desktop computer to work properly including connecting to my wireless network. I had a problem at first until I realized I changed routers since the last time I booted this XP Pro machine. Once I "discovered" my new network connecting was easy. It has been months since I booted that machine so I had 26 Microsoft security updates to install. The update feature wanted me to install IE 8 but I passed on that - I've read about issues with IE 8.

Now here's the the problem as I see it with using this machine in connection with my TV. It will work and connect to the TV properly but I still need a mouse and a keyboard to navigate to the site I wish to see on my TV. So I can put the machine behind my TV , connect to the TV, but I'll still need a way of using the computer. As it turns out, I do of course have an extra keyboard and mouse. And I do have cables that will allow me to connect to the machine from 10 feet away. Now the question is do I want to set all this up or simply take my laptop into my bedroom suite when I want to connect my TV to a computer? The laptop has a keyboard and mouse and so all I'd need to do is connect to the screen. I tend to think I'll use the laptop method because it seems a whole lot easier.

Remember the website I built but wanted to ask the owner's permission before I posted a link? Well here it is - click here . What makes this website a first for me is the inclusion of Flash. Of course I did not develop the flash object but rather saw a flash movie I liked on another site. I copied the .flv flash object from my browser's cache, converted it into an editable .fla file, and then changed the pictures and text - I've yet to learn how to create the layers and all the files that go into a flash movie. The new flash movie has no resemblance to the old one except the number of pictures are the same but the pictures are very different.

My shoulders are sore from sitting at my computer for hours and hours yesterday working on something. I think I'll take most of this day off so as to give my shoulder muscles time to recoup before I start on the lawn care site's images. I know what I want to do and how to do it so it's just a mater of time as to when I do it. Perhaps I'll catch a movie or two on TV today.

Today John and Starr are going to Tallahassee in a rented van with John's stuff for college. I think they will go up, spend the night, and then return tomorrow before noon - Starr got a great deal on a 24 hour van rental. I've not spoken to John in about 10 days but I do know from his mom that his school starts on Monday. I guess he'll be loading up his car and heading to school Sunday night - he always waits until the very last minute to do anything. Look in the dictionary on the word procrastination and you'll see a picture of John! Does he look worried in the picture? I think not.

Posted at 08:51 am in General | Comments (2)

Bill Voegeli's Boys

Wed 19 August 2009

Today I'm feeling really tired although I've not got a reason today should be any different then any other day. I have been experimenting with taking the instant release verses the extended release of one of my meds, but that's not the issue now. I did have to get up to get in a hot tub last night even thought I took a nice, hot bath just before going to bed. Maybe I was restless and really did not sleep well in anticipation of College Football beginning in a couple weeks? Well you know, some days are just better than others.

I saw a picture of Bill Voegeli, his three sons, and his Dad on Facebook so I thought I'd post it today. You know seeing those boys grown up is amazing because I remember Bill when he was just 11 years old and now his oldest son is 21 or 22 I think! My how time flies, huh? You just wait, you too will experience the amazement of how quickly kids seem to grow into young adults. I have a picture of me hold John in my arms outside the Ocean Grill when he was about 6 months old - I couldn't hold him now if my life depended on it!

My house keepers will be gone for a month so I've looked into other services to use in the interim. Someone who used my folks gave me a referral to another group here in Vero plus I have the internet on which to search. I used other services before I settled on the one I have been using but none of them were as good in my opinion. If things go well, I'll only need help for about a month and then I can go back to my regular folks - at lest I hope I can.

I've not tested my third desk top machine as to it's wireless functions but perhaps I'll get to it today if I've got the energy. I also got some pictures from James my lawn care guy which I can use on his little site. They are not all that great and in fact the ones I have of my house are much better and brighter. Maybe I can load his images to a photo editor and improve the quality - they look a bit "washed out" now.

Unless I get a burst of energy, I might just be laying on top of my bed watching TV.

Posted at 08:57 am in General | Comments (0)

TV - Computer Hook Up

Tue 18 August 2009

What's on my agenda today? Well I think I'll work on the lawn care website after talking to my lawn care guy yesterday when he was here for my weekly service. I've asked James to e-mail me some pictures and as soon as he does I'll create a photo gallery which will be the last thing I want to do. Actually we could pictures up of just about any Vero lawn - who would know?

There are smokers with bad smoker's coughs that come to coffee just about every morning. Cough, cough, cough, cough - it gets irritating when they sit next to me and carry on like that. I understand they're not coughing for any other reason except their lings are full of smoke gunk and their body's are trying to get rid of the gunk. It just goes to demonstrate just how addictive smoking can be when you know you're not well but you continue to repeat the same destructive pattern. I know a bit about repeating a destructive pattern but I also know one can get help if they seek it.

Did I mention I got a check for the website I built recently? It was gratifying to know the owner likes her new site and I also get a bit of ice cream money as well. The site I built for Kathryn is not linked to her domain name yet although it's ready to go. I've e-mailed her about taking this one last step but thus far she's not responded. I think she has been very busy of late and will likely get around to it soon. There really isn't anything I know that needs to be done but I do want to go over everything with her before I change her presences on the internet.

Yesterday I managed to connect my laptop to my 67" TV so I know I'll be able to watch Georgia Tech on ESPN 360. The picture was good but of course it was not HD quality. I'm wondering if I can actually get HD through my computer? I know YouTube has some video in HD but I'm not 100% sure I can take full advantage of that with my video card. Do I need a HD video card installed or will any computer render video in HD if it is sent in HD? I'll look into that and report back. If any of you already know, let me know. I will say that the YouTube videos I've seen that are sent in HD do look bigger, brighter, and better than the normal videos. Have I discovered a new thing for which I can play?

I wonder about all this because I've read somewhere that you need something like a XBox to take full advantage of the movies you can stream to your computer. Places like NetFlix or other DVD rental services. I read an article in The Wall Street Journal a few weeks back that suggested the future of movie rentals will be streaming over the internet and not DVD rentals. I've rented a movie online through DirectTV but I could not select the time I wanted to start it. If you download a movie, you can watch it anytime you want, correct? Or is the movie coded such that it will only play for 24 hours or something like that?

Today I may see if I can move that 3rd desktop I have into my bedroom so that I can have a connection to the internet on my TV screen at any time. I know it will work but the issue is whether or not I can get it to work wirelessly. I've got a Netgear USB plug-in that should work but I think it didn't work the last time I tried. We shall see.

Posted at 08:47 am in General | Comments (0)

John's Moving Soon

Mon 17 August 2009

There was a Little League game last night after all - Northern California vs. Southern California. I was rooting for the Northern team but in the 5th inning the Southern team took a lead to win - it was tied 3 - 3 until then. The Southern team had a BIG advantage in that their 12 year old picture was 6'4" and weight 205 lbs. - is that fair? Heck this dude is as big as some pro players at least those not on steroids. Can you imaging what this kid is going to be like when he's about 18 years old? That's what is interesting about these Little League games - kids the same age can vary in size over 100%. There was a 13 year old kid that was 5' and weight 95 pounds. I think there may be a game today.

You know what I've noticed of late more than in the past - there are some coffee klatch attendees that cough through the whole meeting. Smokers. They are smokers with terrible and annoying smoking coughs. Unless they do something about there smoking they are headed for trouble in the future. I sure am glad that is one nasty habit I did not pick up - smoking cigarettes. Today smoking is very expensive - I think some packs are about $5 when they were $.30 when I was a kid. Cigarettes have actually gone up more than gasoline.

Tropical storm Bill is now hurricane Bill with increasing winds. The good news is the latest 5 day forecast has the storm turning to the North before it gets to Florida so I'm hopeful we'll not get hit. It's it a bit unusual to have the first tropical storms of a season not even get started until the middle of August? I'm not complaining mind you I'm just making an observation.

The first real games of the college football season are still more than 2 weeks away. This year - except for one game - games don't start until September which is as it should be in my opinion. Back in my college days games didn't start until about the 3rd weekend in September but we were on the quarter system then. Until the games begin, I can watch replays on TV and of course Little League games.

Starr and John are driving to Tallahassee on Thursday to take John's stuff up to college. They've rented a van for his bed and dresser - I never took a bed to school but rather used the ones in the fraternity house. Then again, John is going to be living in an apartment rather than a dorm or fraternity house so he needs a bed. I'm not sure when he'll drive up for school but I assume it will be this weekend? I think he'll end up at the community college for one term before the bureaucrats at FSU will allow him to enter the school - they wouldn't want to let him in if he is one class short even though he could take the class while at FSU. Oh no, that would make too much sense a violate the bureaucrat's number one rule - make life difficult and unpleasant for the taxpayers funding their salaries. I bet if he were a member of some group he'd be admitted - like illegal alien from Central America for example. Well at least John will be up there and that's a good thing in my correct view.

Posted at 10:29 am in General | Comments (0)


Sun 16 August 2009

On the weekends I like to watch a movie in the morning for a couple hours. This morning I watched The Bourne Ultimatum again and it had the same ending as the other times I watched it - what will be the next movie in the series? I must say, they sure did destroy a lot of cars in this movie - Jeez! This was a non-stop chase scene interrupted every once and awhile with the details of the plot. I have the 3 movie Bourne set on CD that John gave me so I can actually watch it anytime.

It seems I've been watching more movies than ever before after returning from the Keys - what's up with that? Am I entering a new movie-watching phase? It could be that watching a movie on my big screen TV in HD with surround Dolby 8.8 just makes the experience more fun. WHatever the reason, it's been entertaining thus far.

Yesterday there where 4 Little League play-off's on ESPN that started at noon. I watched the first and last games almost in their entirety but got distracted during the other two. Damn the games are fun to watch for me for several reasons not the least of which is the excitement of the players. It is interesting to see them play as well as the arrogant professionals in one minute then fumble like the beginners they are in the next. There aren't any games today but more are coming up.

One thing I've noticed that all the Little Leaguers do is spit. They spit a lot. I mean every few seconds it seems. What's up with that? Why to baseball players spit so much - anyone got a clue? Must be some sort of stress relief ?

It seems Tropical Storm Ana has changed it's track and will head into the Gulf South of the US - the other day it seemed to be headed for Florida. It's looking like it will lose some steam over Cuba at this point. On the other hand, Tropical Storm Bill -don't you just love that name - is projected to be a CAT 2 storm by Wednesday but is still way out in the ocean.The bad news is that it's scheduled to strengthen to a CAT 3 storm and head for the East coast of Florida during the week. This could be a nasty storm for some parts of Florida buy next week.

It is a beautiful sunny day here in Vero and I've not got any plans for today. There is a website for my lawn care guy on which I can work today but that's about it. I've got the site about 75% done now I think although I need to add picture which I do not have and will need to get from James. Of course I can put pictures of the Dolphin House up but that's all. Then again, with the Dolphin House on the site, why add any more?

Posted at 10:10 am in General | Comments (0)

Little League Games

Sat 15 August 2009

It's a beautiful Saturday morning here in Vero with a breeze and temperatures in the low 80's not the 90's like it has been. It would be nice if we had some cooler weather but I don't think that is in the cards here in Florida, at least not yet. We've also had some much needed rain - even my irrigation system has not kept up with the dry weather.

Speaking of weather, have you heard about "Bill"? That is the second tropical storm of the season headed our way although the first one of the season, Ana, will be here first. When I say "be here", I mean the 5 day projected track of Ana has it coming ashore just about the Vero Beach area - no joke. Of course it is days away, may change course, and there is no prediction on the strength. Just to be safe I'm going to the market to buy toilet paper, bread, and mike - isn't that what you are suppose to do?

It has begin! The Little League play-off's are on ESPN in HD - I watched the team from Warner Robins, Georgia beat the team from Virginia last night which means Georgia will advance of course. You know that Georgia has won the the Little League World championship several times before. Today there are 4 play-off games starting at noon on ESPN so you can count on me watching some of them. Unlike the major league players that say "f*ck you" and shoot you a bird when the play badly or loose, the Little Leaguers cry. It's not the multi-million dollar contra CRTs for which they play but rather the pure enjoyment and competition of the sport. I feel about the same way about College Football except those guys do get scholarships.

I've been taking a hot soak in my tub each night just before I go to bed and since we returned from Islamorada, I've not needed to get up in the middle of the night to do it. I draw a tub full of water about 20 minutes before I want to go to bed and then sit in it for 8 to 10 minutes. I'm not sure if I'd wake in the middle of the night like in the past but I actually like the process so I'll pursue it at least for now. I go to sleep within a couple minutes and generally sleep through the night without awaking. For years and years I'd always wake at least once in the middle of the night for a trip to the water closet but not anymore. I'll see where this takes me.

Would you like to see my latest web site? I'll post a link but first I think I should ask the owner if it is ok - she values privacy very much because it is so important to her business. I don't think there will be any harm, after all, it is published on the internet for anyone to find. My next project is a very basic site for my lawn care guy - giving him a presence on the internet will potentially bring him more business and will create the image of professionalism. The site will not be fancy but then none of the sites in his business are unless they are those of a national lawn care company.

Posted at 10:25 am in General | Comments (0)

Programming Work

Fri 14 August 2009

Remember the new site I published to the internet on Wednesday only to find the organization the owner of the sites uses to host the site does not have .PHP installed on their servers? I still find it very odd that in today's server environment a large firm doesn't have .PHP they instead use a server side language known as .asp - a language I've never used before. Well in the past 36 hours I taught myself enough .asp to replace the .php 'contact page' with a .asp contact page - pretty amazing considering I never ever used .asp before, huh? Actually I found it similar enough to .php that I was able to make the jump after a bit of learning and testing.

I find that the best way for me to learn something is to research a problem when I have a problem rather than stating at the beginning of the book and work through it. Like with my Cannon camera - the user's book is pages and pages long explaining everything about the use of the camera. But many, in fact most, of the options I don't use so I only only the things I need at the time I need them. I may have in depth knowledge of a programming technique but not have a clue about something similar because I've never had to use it. The system works for me.

I went to my dentist yesterday for a semi-annual cleaning and while I was there they took 24 pictures of my teeth from every angle. In the past, my dentist only took 4 x-rays, not 24 x-rays. The good news all is well and nothing extra had to be done yesterday. The process changed my 45 minute cleaning into a two hour visit coasting about twice what I expected. My view is dental maintenance is better than dental repair.

While there I was talking with the office manager - my dentist's wife - about their new website. It is not up yet but it is HUGE. There are pages and pages of text and over a dozen JavaScript files on the pages. It has flash and other needs for Java - a really cool site although it actually comes from a web developer who specializes in dentists. It was interesting that she show me a bill for $80 to have two Outlook Express e-mail clients set up on two computers. When I asked about having a programmer do the .asp work on the site I mentioned above the charge would be $80/hour with no limit. I guess I'm finding that programmers charge $80/hour like plumbers - I'll keep that in the back of my head.

No boys and girls, I'm not going to set up shop but when I'm asked to help people I don't know, I think it reasonable to charge something based on either time or the project. When I build a website, I charge a flat fee - I'm so demanding on perfection it takes me way too long to build a site to charge by the hour. This whole website and computer help thing interests me but I don't want to obligate myself beyond a certain point. I certainly could take a young man (like John) and teach him enough to perhaps make a living. If it were John, I'd of course freely give my time to teach and help him but I think he still plans on making a career as a Chippendale dancer. HaHaHaHa

I'm working on a site for my lawn care guy now - it will be simple but it will give him an internet presence in Vero.

I just like today's picture so I thought I'd post it.

Posted at 07:11 am in General | Comments (0)

Ride with TB

Thu 13 August 2009

Wouldn't you know it - I went to my dentist appointment one day early. I'll go back again this morning for the cleaning I have scheduled. The reason they did not call on Tuesday to remind me is I didn't have an appointment - they did call yesterday. Oh, well.

Almost daily I get an invitation from some gal to "become friends" on Skype - clearly they don't know anything about me or else they may not ask in the first place. Most of these come from Asia and of course I block them. Some come with links to a porn site or at least that is what I think they are - I never click on them. So yesterday I adjusted my security settings to block anyone who is not already on my contact list. Thus far I've not gotten any more invitations from lonely women in the Philippines. Theses have become a nuisance. I have no idea how they get my user name in the first place except it could come from my TanzaniteAmerica.com site where I have a Skype link posted. Then who looks at that site from China in the first place?

I continue to be amazed at how little time it takes me to get anywhere in Vero - usually under 10 minutes. In Atlanta, I could hardly go to the Publix in under 10 minutes and it was only 1.5 miles away. Let me promise you, I sure as heck do not miss the travel time and traffic in Atlanta.

Speacking of Atlanta, I found one of my two favorite radio talk show hosts, Neal Boortz, on a local station here. When I looked for him in the past, the closest station was in Orlando which I can not get very well here in Vero. After the dentist this morning, I plan on coming back and tuning in.

Yesterday TB came by to fetch me for a trip to the tree farms and pole barn. Nothing special was going on it was just a chance to get away for awhile and look at the palms. Those trees really look good - when development starts again in this area I bet he'll be able to make a nice profit on the trees. His are straight and well shaped - perfect for landscaping.

One of the new sites I've been working on is up ion the world wide web now - I published it yesterday. The site looks great IMHO but there is an issue - the servers the company uses (not the ones I use) do not have PHP installed so my 'contact us' page will not load. I find PHP to be the best code for server side interaction like forms. Frankly I think it's a bit unusual for a big company that hosts a lot of sites not to have PHP running on their leased servers. The tech guy that works for the company that actually owns the servers is getting in touch with the folks that lease the servers - maybe they will install PHP? If not, I'll figure something else out.

Posted at 06:34 am in General | Comments (0)

Lock Tampering?

Wed 12 August 2009

Remember my complaining about sugar ants in my house? These tiny little creatures are basically harmless but a nuisance - they get into very thing. I me3ntioned this to my house keepers and they said their clients like a product called Terro to get rid of these pests. I went to Home Depot about a week ago, bought a bottle of this liquid, and put it out in 3 places. Thus far, I've not seen a sugar ant return! Damn this stuff is good - I wish I had found it earlier.

My lawn care guy said my yard looks dry but I know my irrigation system has been working - I see it in the mornings it runs. I guess it just needs to be run a bit more in this very hot and dry time of the year. While James was here he asked me what I've been doing and when I said I've been building some websites his ears perked up - he would like a site too. I think I'll build a simple site for him as a bonus for the good work he does for me. He could pay me but I'd rather do this for him knowing he'd probably appreciate it more. Now the question is where can I get some free web space on a server for him? He uses Bell south DSL so I'll check with them first. I don't envision this being a major project like some of my others.

Starr is getting better but she still has not totally recovered from the flu. She thinks she wants to get back to some "normal" activities although I think more rest would be better. The major reason people have illnesses that linger is they try to get back to things too quickly. I hope she'll take it easy.

This morning I have a dentist appointment at least that's what I think. Usually the dentist's office will call to remind me but they didn't call yesterday. Maybe I got my mornings wrong or maybe I've got them trained by now to except me to remember even if they don't call - of course they are correct.

I suspect someone of messing with my John's Island storeroom. I left it open for someone who wanted to use my bike pump and asked them to lock it when they were finished - I have an electric keypad lock on that door like I have on my back door. Well I went to get in it yesterday only to find it was not locked. Not only was it not locked, it would not lock! The metal frame around the hole in the door jam where the bolt closes into was moved such that the door would not lock! I had to get a screwdriver and adjust the metal frame so the bolt will go into it. The frame was not lose. It was moved a good bit and needed a screwdriver to fix it. I suspect someone moved it on purpose so that the door would not lock. There didn't appear to be anything missing...yet. The only one I think could have done this is someone I trust at least up until now. I could be wrong of course but you guys remember the last time I was wrong about anything was back in 1972!

Posted at 06:57 am in General | Comments (0)

Tech Wins...Again!

Tue 11 August 2009

Did you miss me yesterday? I got started very early on the two websites I'm building and I spent the whole day on them. Both are at a point where I think most of the work is done except for some editing. One of the sites is published to the internet and you can see it here at WinglerLaw.com . I know what you're going to ask ..what's up with the flash? I've not got a clue as to how to make a flash movie but I'm learning how to edit flash objects. My very first attempt to actually edit and publish a flash site is that one on WinglerLaw.

The WinglerLaw site is owned by an Atlanta attorney who was referred to me by another guy who's website I remade. This site is not a totally new site but the layout and some pages are new. Frankly I think I could have started from scratch and spent less time on it. You see it was a template used by Microsoft's Front page program that has not been used since 2005. There is a lot of coding that was used 8 years ago that has since been updated and made easier but I had to work with what I had. All my effort was done with notepad because I don't have the program used to make it in the first place. The owner seems to be pleased and that is what counts.

I got two dozen new landscape lights in to replace the ones that burn out all the time. I really like the look of my house at night but I had no idea it would require so much effort to keep all the lights on. Heck I thought the bulbs should last not only months but perhaps years - I was wrong. These bulbs don't even last as long as your standard light bulb even though they are low voltage - 12 volts to be exact. It takes effort to keep things nice around here.

I watched the replay of the Georgia Tech - Georgia game from last year - Tech won again in the replay. It was a great game and was a game in which Georgia had more points scored on them than any other regular season game ever! The final was 45 -43 even though Tech was behind by 17 points at the half. Georgia Tech rarely beats Georgia so this was a real pleasure to watch again. It's easier to sit through the whole game when you know your team is going to win even though I didn't recall the final score. Can you tell I'm ready for college football?

It's time to have my car detailed again - I like doing it twice a year. If you keep your car waxed, it will look good and the paint will last longer as I discovered on my other Mercedes. The question is who will do the work? Should I go to the place that did it before or try a guy who has a mobile van and will come to me? The place that did it last time put some oily - like stuff on my leather I did not like at all. Of course I could tell them not to use that crap again but rather some leather polish I have. Then again the mobile guy comes recommended by someone who's recommendations are usually good. Stay tuned.

Posted at 06:40 am in General | Comments (2)

Voo-Doo Lily

Sun 09 August 2009

Yesterday I talked about ESPN 360 but at the time I had not installed it but now I have. I'll be able to watch the first Georgia Tech game on my computer or even connect my 67" HDTV to my computer - my Samsung has the computer ports necessary but I really wonder how go the quality would be. One way to find out - try it. The viewing on my monitor is better than I expected! I'm a happy camper now that I have the ESPN 360 option as well as ESPN-U.

I've been eating some fabulous peaches of late but they are from the West Coast - I really haven't found Georgia peaches in the markets and the ones I have found were not all that good. I leave the State and the peach crop goes downhill. It is still full fruit season here in August which I expect will last into the Fall. I love fruit...have I ever mentioned that before?

That VooDoo lily has come back again this year in the same place it was growing last year. It did not have what has been described as a grotesque smelling flower last year so I'm hoping for a flower this year. If do get blessed with a raunchy bloom, I'll of course post pictures. The rest of my landscaping is flourishing almost out of control - my plants get bigger and bigger all the time needing attention to keep them in check. I wanted a lot of plants so now I have them.

I've been working on another website I stopped working on when I went to the Keys. Yesterday I was able to complete the flash movie for the site as I liked it and I'm pleased to report the site's owner thinks it is great too. In stead of have words flash and change with image changes, I concluded a simple steady message would be better for potential visitors than words or text constantly changing. It is clean, neat, and classy in my humble biased opinion - I'll post a link later when more of the site is completed. Now that the "home page" is acceptable it will be just a matter of completing the work for the other pages - I need to add images because I think it best not to have the flash movie on every page.

Yesterday I was working on a headache that got worse in the afternoon. I also had zero energy yesterday even after taking some meds. I could have taken more meds but I concluded something else was going on so I did not - today I've not taken anything except Wellbutrin which I take everyday. Late yesterday and into the evening I did take some things for my headache which is gone this morning. I hope today is good.

Do you folks have Secunia software scanner which tells you when there is an update to your installed software? Most software checks for updates but only once a week or perhaps once a month. This software checks your machine every time you boot to advise you about updates and it gives you a link to download the update. I say this because I think it is an excellent tool for updating security risks as soon as they are available. It is free and can be found here.

Posted at 08:36 am in General | Comments (0)

TV Stuff

Sat 08 August 2009

Four weeks from today will be the first Saturday of the 2009 College Football season - I'm very much looking forward to that. The first game Georgia Tech plays is against some smaller college and thus will not be on network television. Damn! It will be on something called ESPN 360 but not everyone can get the site on the internet because some ISP's don't pay for it like Comcast. So I started looking for a work-around through some proxy or something but really couldn't find anything. Then I read that Comcast was bring ESPN 360 to their network in August so I checked it out - glory, glory, I think I will get ESPN 360 after all.

Yesterday I got some new plants - real ones - for the inside of my house because several died while we were in the Keys. Other plants I put outside hoping they would live and they did but unfortunately they became food for snails. While at Home Depot I picked up some stuff to hopefully eliminate my ant problem. I have what are known as 'sugar ants' - small little creatures that like sweet things and you know I have sweet stuff around. It was a product recommended by my house keepers and also by the folks at Home Depot - reports to follow.

I've not got much planned for today except some TV viewing - I may even rent a movie like "The Day the Earth Stood Still". That is an old sci-fi movie from the early 1960's updated with Keanu Reeves. I might actually go pick up the DVD rather than renting it online unless I can figure out how to rewind and pause my Comcast On Demand feature. I've got a great new DVD player I bought to go along with my updated video system when I moved into the house - I guess I should try it again. I have used it to watch some DVD's John game me - the Bourne series of movies.

Now that I'm back from the Keys my interest in getting out in the sun at the beach or elsewhere is dwindling fast. I have a dermatologist appointment in a few weeks to see what great new things I grew over the Summer. I'm also stating back on my acid peels which make me even more sensitive to the sun. Through that in with my meds and it would be safe to say I should avoid the sun. There is always next year.

I talked to Starr yesterday and she is still sick with the flu after 2 weeks. Alex got better but he's only 18 - old farts like me & Starr take more time to recover. She should be resting but she's a mom thinking it is her duty to get up and do things. The more you do the longer it takes to get better. I'm not going to see her until she does get better and I hope John doesn't get sick in the meantime - I would want him to bring it to me. The flu is bad.

I've got a new idea with respect to a website I'm building for someone. Since we returned I've not worked on it again because I didn't like the direction in which it was going before we went to the Keys. Perhaps I'll mess with it today or not.

Posted at 06:08 am in General | Comments (0)

Monk - Last Season

Fri 07 August 2009

My house keepers came yesterday to clean my house after being gone for about 6 weeks. Things are back to normal now and they will be coming on a regular bases again beginning a week from Monday. My house never did get dirty as such but I'm not one to mop the floors, clean the blinds, or scrub 5the bath tubs - I do vacuum regularly because Sally Cat deposits hair all over my house and I can't wait until my house keepers return. I also keep the kitchen clean and flush the toilets at least once a week if they are full or not!

I LOVE my big screen TV; I'm appreciating it more now having been in the Keys apartment with an older analog set. The colors are awesome and the picture is bright - I especially appreciate High Definition programming again . The Little League World Series will be great in HD but the real fun will be watching College Football in HD again. Lately I've been watching movies which is rather unusual for me - I've seen about 4 since I've been back which is more than a usually watch in a whole month. Heck, I'm even thinking about renting a movie or two on Comcast or DirectTV.

Speaking of television, the last season of Monk starts tonight at 9 PM so you know where I'll be. The question is why stop one of the most popular & successful series on TV? I bet it has to do with the actors just getting tired of the series in particular the star, Tony Shalhoub. Why else would you stop a money making project? Anyway, there is a Monk Marathon on the USA channel all day today starting at 9 AM this morning. What are you asking? Will I watch any of the marathon? Hell...does a Liberal like spending your money and controlling your life? Doh! I should also mention a new season on Psych also begins tonight after Monk.

Last night there was a "neighborhood Watch Group" meeting scheduled for 6 PM at the public library just 2 blocks from my house. I wasn't sure I needed to go but I went anyway to see what it was all about. When I got there the library was closed because the air conditioning didn't work. The meeting was moved to the police station but I didn't drive there and I notice other potential attendees not going either - I bet it will be rescheduled. I'm not aware of criminal style activities in my hood so that's why I wanted to go in the first place. The police have not discovered me as yet!

John decided he does want the desk I pictured here yesterday - he's a wise young man because that was my first choice as well. We'll probably order it today and have it shipped to his apartment in Tallahassee in time for school. No, he still has not heard from the college - I've asked him to call admissions to find out what's up with that. Maybe today he'll hear?

Posted at 08:35 am in General | Comments (0)

No Business Meeting

Thu 06 August 2009

On the regular quarterly business meeting of my coffee group a member made a motion to change back to monthly meetings which unfortunately was passed. I'm the one that made the motion to change to quarterly meetings in the first place because it was my belief monthly meetings were not needed. In fact, the big coffee group in Atlanta I went to daily only had a meeting when someone called one which was about once a year. Well I was prepared with the notes yesterday morning but there were not enough people to actually have a valid business meeting - there were 4 of us including me and the treasurer. The very people who thought it was so critical to have meetings monthly again did not show up at all. Gee...have I made my point or what? The "critical" monthly meeting was canceled for lake of interest!

Frankly there is nothing so important that we should meet monthly after all, if something really important came up, we could call a meeting. I just don't get it. Is it because the tradition was having a monthly meeting? Are there other reason for which I'm not aware? Should I make a motion to change it back to quarterly again? Let's see what happens next month.

I've heard from my house cleaners and I expect them to return this morning after being gone for 8 weeks. Because I keep things tidy anyway this has not been a big issue for me. What I don't do is mop the floors, dust the blinds, and polish all my surfaces as they do on each visit. It will be very nice to have them back this morning.

The lawyer in Atlanta who's website I've edited sent me an e-mail thanking me for moving him higher on the Google search engine results. I've not done a whole lot except to edit some META tags and just a bit of his text. Now that I'm back, I'll pay more attention to other possible edits or changes to move him even higher on the list - he's now on page 2 which is not bad considering how many lawyers are practicing in and around Atlanta. I've also been working on an update look for his site but that will not move him up on Google. I've not gotten back into the design thing yet.

John came by to look at more writing desk options and since he left, I found even more. He wisely wants a writing desk similar to the one I have - simple with room for stuff. Of course the choice is his but who would not want my input? I think he'll mull over the options then let me know which one he wants us to order by week end. One of the desks he's considering is pictured today BTW, it sure would be nice to know he has officially been accepted by FSU although he's going up there no matter what happens. There is still the community college alternative in Tallahassee.

Tommy got his boat back so everything and everybody that were in the Keys has now back home either here in Vero or Atlanta. The group tends to take a lot of 'stuff' in order to have options to play while there.Tommy is generous in sharing the stuff he has with others - we all appreciate that. So what will happen next year - time will tell.

Posted at 06:10 am in General | Comments (0)

Desk Hunting

Wed 05 August 2009

Yesterday I picked up my one prescription at Wal-Mart and wanted to buy toothpaste and some air freshener - I do brush my teeth every fee weeks whether they need it or not. The Vero Wal-Mart is being remodeled and to my dismay, they did not have either item I was seeking - can you believe that? The new store is nicer than the old store but now I'm going to have to re-learn the location of things I buy there. I went to Publix to buy the toothpaste and air freshener but couldn't find the air freshener I've been using. Just my luck...they probably stopped making it.

My home mail was delivered after having it held for 3 weeks - there were only two items I even opened. Now that I pay everything online I don't get statements anymore, just advertisements. I did get a CD from Mike Block who's website I built a couple months ago and a check for my work. He also sent me a check for an amount great than just the actually out of pocket costs I had for the domain name and hosting. What he did was not necessary but I do appreciate it.

I called to air conditioning companies to come give me an estimate for my air handler repair. I called the company that put it in back in 2003 and another company recommended by my cousin, Alice the cake baker. A service guy from the installing company came first and after he left I cancelled the second service call. You're not going to believe this but the noise was being created by vibration on the outside compressor and coming in via the gas lines. He "moved" the compressor just a bit and the noise stopped. While he was here he checked everything out resulting in a perfect report - all is well. Here I was prepared to replace the air handler when it was resolved by a $80 service call! The stars must be aligned just right for me. My usual experience is to request a $80 service call and end up with a whole new system.

John has been on the hunt for a desk to take to college with him later this month. He's found a couple he likes but of course I've done my homework as well. I went to the place where I bought the desk I'm using here as my computer desk and found several other options I'd like to show to him. John will call and come by later this morning so we can discuss this matter. Desks are important when you're in college - they are the center of your universe with all your important 'stuff' on them.

I'm off to have coffee.

Posted at 07:13 am in General | Comments (0)


Tue 04 August 2009

The rest of the Islamorada crowd arrived back in Vero yesterday afternoon as expected. I met TB to help him with Drew's boat as it is now launched again. The Cracker will arrive sometime today if things go as planned. Yesterday the tide was so low even the Maverick had a difficult time getting into the canal behind the Tulip Lane estate - Tommy said it was as low as he's seen it.

Yesterday I had places to go and things to do and now it looks like today will be a repeat. I'll pick up my router & modem from Tom - I left them with him so internet access was still available even when I left. I've got to go to Wally World this morning to pick up a prescription so perhaps I can get the hardware then. I also need to get the mail I've had held for the past 3 weeks - I went to my PO Box yesterday and all but one piece of mail was junk. The mail coming to my house is usually a bit more interesting and important.

John's mother, Starr, and his brother have been sick with what sounds like the flu - I hope it is not the N1H1 thing. Flu is bad enough but Summer flu is the worst in my opinion. I always get a flu shot in the Fall and plan to do so again this year once the vaccine is available. According to what I hear on the news, I may also need to get a separate vaccine shot for the H1N1 flu because it is so much different that the "normal" flu. If you don't get a shot I'd ask why not? Why take the chance you'll get sick? I just don't understand why anyone would not want to be vaccinated.

Later today I want to call some air conditioning companies about my air handler. The one I have is working but I think a bearing in the motor is getting bad. I also looked at the condensing coils and they look like they really need to be cleaned or perhaps even replaced. The air handler is about 8 to 10 years old so maybe it is time? My plan is to get at least a couple of estimates as to what work needs to be done and at what cost.

It is a bright beautiful day here in Vero without a cloud in the sky - a day that reminds me why I like living here. Last night a major rain event occurred for about 45 minutes that was really intense but the rain was needed. Even with my irrigation system it is always good to have a nice soaking rain.

While I was gone I got an announcement of the birth of Djem - Syp & Sjak's new little baby boy. In the announcement was this picture of Yari & Djem side by side - I think it is a great picture. I scanned it into my machine so the image is not as good as the original but you get the idea. Cute, huh?

I'm off to Wally World.

Posted at 08:46 am in General | Comments (0)

Back to Normal

Mon 03 August 2009

First regular day back in Vero so I've gotten back into my routine by going for coffee this morning - my coffee klatch were happy to see me of course. Nothing has changed there sine I left about 3 weeks ago which I can also say about most things - nothing has changed. But you know what, I have a feeling of comfort returning to my 'normal' life without a ripple in my karma. Let's see what this week brings.

Strangle I've not sleep as well up returning as I did in the Keys - I guess I'm just not used to a smooth bed without lumps in it? I also think the pool duty in The Palms drained some energy everyday making resting not only needed but easier. Could it be that eating later also had an affect? Wouldn't that be ironic in that I like putting on the feed bag around the same predictable time everyday. I'll have to do some testing.

Since I've been home I've needed a hot soaking tub full of water at night to rest well. Actually it is almost a routine with me so I'm wondering just how much I really need it. Except for the first night and last two nights in the Keys, I did not do the hot tub of water thing in Islamorada. What's up with that? The good news is I have a sleep solution that does not require additional meds.

WOW...what a difference a big 67" HDTV makes compared to the one in our condo. It really is amazing the differences in clarity, color, and definition. It is a pure delight to have my Samsung back and I can hardly wait for College Football to begin in a month. I even have been watching movies which I rarely do - usually it is FOX News and certain series on TNT, USA, or TBS.

The house plants I left in the house did not fair very well - I'm going to need to replace them. The ones I took outside before I left also didn't fair very well because some were attacked by snails. I've moved my silk plants back into the house until I can find replacements for the dead or injured plants. I might just buy a few new plants rather than replacing all the silk plants again.Hmmm...

I've ordered two dozen landscape lights for replacements. I have one whole section of 5 lights out in the front of my house on the right side. I'll get around to replacing them later today I think or perhaps early in the morning tomorrow when it is not so hot. Yes boys and girls, it is hot and humid here in Vero. I'm ready for the Fall so that the humidity will come down even though it won't get cold. Oh yes, did I mention College Football is coming this Fall/

I've got some websites on which I can work but I'm just not in to it just yet. I'll have to bring myself back up to where I was before I left and I'm not ready to do that. That's why I like to start and finish a project so as not to lose my concentration or forget the things I've tried that either did not work or I don't like. The exception is Kathryn's project because most of it is done at this point - I just need to actually set up the SingerJohnston.com domain name to point to the new site. First, I think I heed to go over a few things with Kathryn face to face.

Posted at 09:44 am in General | Comments (0)

Home Again

Sun 02 August 2009

We've made it safely back to Vero and in record time with John the Flash driving - it took us about 3 hours and 20 minutes to make the trip. The traffic was not bad for us because we left at 8 AM on Sunday morning so we beat the crowds out of the Keys and the expressway was moving well. Actually John was not passing everyone but rather moving with the flow most of the time - I did not look to see what speed 'the flow' was going. When I decide to go somewhere, I want to get up and go rather than sit around and wait - it is my innate nature. Some folks can move slowly, have breakfast or lunch, make some calls then go but not me.

We came home one day early - my lease runs out today. I also had one Wellbutrin left I could have taken today if I were still in the Keys. When we were packing the car yesterday morning getting ready to leave Drew came up the stairs I was coming down with Sally Cat to warn me Jim (a resident) was at the bottom chit-chatting. If I had taken the elevator, he would have seen the cat cage. Then when he left another resident drove up and once again made small talk while I was in the stairwell waiting for him to leave. Those two people yesterday morning were more people I've seen in the morning since we arrived - there is never anyone up and around at that time. Oh well, we escaped without being discovered with Sally.

The trip was fun and for the most part the weather cooperated with us. Although I only went out on the boat once, John went out every time the boat left the docks with Tommy or Captain Matt and on lobster days he went with Drew. I was invited but going to the sandbar is not something that appeals to me anymore. I like to know when we would be back and it is not at all fair to expect others to meet my screwed up schedule - when you go fishing or diving it is hard to say when you will return. The exception was the day Tommy, John, and I went to out so TB & John could dive while I had boat duty which was fine with me.

I still did not have the energy I would have liked to have and much to my own surprise I was reluctant to take Adderall every time I thought it would help. I'm the type who will take a pill if I think I need one however I did not use the meds as much as I thought I might. What's up with that? I thought I'd take something to get me going all the time but I just didn't want to do so - that is a good thing for me in the long run. I'll report later on my thoughts about meds.

We certainly had enough seafood for awhile which of course is one of the reasons for going down to the Keys. Every once and awhile John and I need meat to break the seafood pattern so hamburgers or steaks provided a day off. One night Mary Ann and Tom made hamburgers cooked on Tommy's grill that were fabulous - not the flat frozen kind you get at fast food but thick & juicy. Needless to say, everyone ate well and John ate more than any other human I've seen having snacks every few hours. Jeez that boy can eat a lot!

Upon arrival back in Vero all was well at my house although there are tasks I'll need to do starting today. I have a whole section of landscape lights out, there are vines growing on the North side of my house, my AC air handler needs attention, plants need to be replaced...the list goes on. Nothing major happened. I even think I'll get my house keepers back this week.

The trip was great but it is nice to be back. There is much more going on but for now I think I'll start my tasks - to Publix I'll go to replenish my refrigerator.

Posted at 08:11 am in General | Comments (0)

Mini-season is Over

Fri 31 July 2009

The day for the lobster hunters got started rather early - John got a call from Drew before 7 AM saying to get up and come on over. It was a beautiful morning although it got rather windy when they went out. I guess they guys wanted to get an early start while the weather was good although it was rather windy. I was thinking they wanted to start early so they could perhaps finish early giving more time for story telling and adult beverage consumption in the pool. Actually is ended up being the sandbar and not the pool.Yesterday was not as productive as the first but the crew still got a lot of bugs - I think the count was 32.

I don't know about the other guys but I can tell you John was still tired when he got up yesterday morning. Nonetheless, a half a day of constant free diving for lobsters did not stop him from heading to the gym mid-afternoon - that boy is addicted or there's a hot babe working the counter. I've never seen the gym much less go into it. But if that makes John happy, I'm pleased he goes there rather than other possible options.

I had one of my lazy days as well wanting to just watch some TV, communicate a bit on my computer, and of course pool duty. How is it that I can wake up with nothing to do and at the end of the day it is only half done? I've also soaked in John's tub filled with hot water in the past couple of days which is the only time I've done that since the first day we arrived. What have I done (or not done) that has brought this on again? I wish I didn't have to do it but on the other hand, it's not a big deal. Trouble is John's tub was made for a ten year old - it is short, narrow, and not very deep. Oh well, things could be a whole hell of a lot worse!

I've not been doing much with my computer of late except to work on some things for Kathryn and her hot new world class site. Before we actual point her domain name to the new site I need to do some editing and clean-up. There's left over code on her pages from my initial building process.

I do want to mention an urgent Microsoft update that was released yesterday cornering the Internet Explorer browser. The Microsoft's out-of-cycle fixes are actually patching other patches that were released on Patch Tuesday just 16 days ago. According to the the company, this patch is rated "Critical" for IE 6/7/8 on XP and IE 7/8 on Vista. You can get the info and updates here . I downloaded and installed the security patch yesterday.

The crowd went to Bentley's again last evening but I stayed here - I was working on a headache which is still with me this morning. For me, I rank my headaches as mild (no medication), moderate (over the counter headache pills), bad (medication with codeine), and severe (Vicodin) - sometimes I have to start with one level and move to another like yesterday. I'm not sure what the day will bring but I am sure the weather is great - see picture from this morning.

Posted at 06:48 am in General | Comments (0)

Successful Day

Thu 30 July 2009

The first day of chasing lobsters was a success - the crew (pictured) got either 42 or 44 lobsters which was a good first day. They left the docks around 8 AM and return about 3:30 PM - the boys were exhausted. But their reward was a fresh lobster tail dinner last night under the Tiki Hut. The crew is going to repeat the lobster hunt today weather permitting.

The dinner was wonderful of course - how can you not like fresh broiled lobster tails? Besides, lobster is a perfect delivery system for melted butter! It wasn't hot last night and there weren't bugs out to bother us. Actually, there was a rather nice breeze coming off the ocean that kept things very pleasant and the bugs away. This lobster dinner thing is an annual ritual and fun for all. Surprisingly, there actually was some left over lobster tails because Mary Ann fixed two tails for each of us and some of us only at one tail - like me for example. I brought a tail back to make lobster salad for lunch tomorrow.

I had pool duty and I was on call in the event they needed a fresh body with a license on one of the boats. The guys didn't quite get their limit so I was not called for lobster duty. My contribution was to take pictures for everyone and I cooked the baked potatoes. I'm a damn good potato baker - it's a skill I've mastered.

Yesterday was a good day to go to World vWide Sportsman - it was virtually empty at 9:30 yesterday.I love the store - all kinds of fishing stuff and fishing clothes. Of course I had to get my annual T-shirt although this time it was not a Guy Harvey - I have Guy Harvey's at home I've not worn yet from past years. I think I might return this morning now that I know what size T-shirt John wears now. He likes to wear medium so his muscles will rip the selves - I'm kidding!

There are some new people who have arrived here at The Palms - we met some of these folks last year. In fact, it seems we meet some of the same Summer visitors year after year - sort of like a home coming. For the most part, there are very few people here now - just some year-round residence all of whom we know.

Posted at 05:46 am in General | Comments (3)

Lobster Mini-season Begins

Wed 29 July 2009

Gosh we had some terrible weather yesterday that started around 3:30 AM when I was awakened by wind and thunder - remember, I sleep with ear plugs in so that the late night crowd around the seawall or other noise like John coming in will not wake me. This storm was so intense it did wake me. We had heavy wind and rain most all morning yesterday although it did clear off and the sun came out around 2 PM. With the sun up, the boys went diving.

After diving, the guys went to the sandbar and I took the girls & John to meet them at Holiday Isle. I was invited too but the sandbar is not my thing - about the only thing that happens there is consumption of adult beverages. I don't have a problem being around folks having fun and drinking beer but I'm likely not to want to stay as long as others - I totally understand because I've been there. Besides, I think this is a young person's outing as it should be. All returned with the same number of limbs they left with earlier in the day.

John and I went to World Wide Sports to do some annual shopping and the place was packed like sardines in a can. The wait to check out was about 20 people deep in each of the two check-out lines. There were so many people we couldn't move around so we left within about 15 seconds of walking in. I guess the bad weather kept people from doing other things so they went to World Wide. John and I will return at another time.

Remember when I talked about sending money via a Money gram back to Vero to help someone get out of jail? They only had half of the money needed to pay the bondsman so I sent the other half by charging the funds to my Master Card using Money Gram online. I had a charge for the $275 appear on my card the next day as a "pending" charge. Well something strange happened - the charge disappeared although the funds were sent. I expected it to be posted by now (a week late) but it has not - what's up with that? I'll wait a couple more days but if it does not appear, I'm going to call the bank to see what happened. Strange.

Today is the first day of lobster mini-season - one of the highlights of the trip. It is still dark outside but I can see flashes of lightening and sometimes hear a bit of thunder; there's wind too. None of these weather conditions are good for going out on Tommy's boat in search of "bugs" but if the lobster Gods are with us, the weather will improve later this morning. Reports to follow.

Posted at 05:24 am in General | Comments (0)


Tue 28 July 2009

Most of the boys went fishing yesterday out at the "409 hump" - Amy was the only brave girl to go along. They all said they had fun catching 3 black fin tunas and two dolphin one of which was probably 25 to 30 pounds. I didn't see the fish except in pictures but my experience from fishing in the past suggests it was that big. Ryan was the angler who caught the fish but everyone had their picture taken with it - if you didn't know better, one who think John was the angler. Today's picture is the happy crew back at the docks.

Last evening we all had burgers grilled by Tom with fixing's by MaryAnn - frankly it was time for me to have a break from seafood and John agreed. It was great as usual and we ate early enough for me to watch The Closer at 9. I love fresh grilled homemade burgers with mustard.

It was a nice day so I had pool duty stating at noon when Rush came on the radio. Kevin, Kimper, and Ty joined me for pool duty and they stated later than I could because of the sensitivity of my baby-soft skin from the meds. Of course the crowd got in the pool after the fishing trip and before the burgers. John was a bit late getting back from the gym - he didn't leave here until 5 o'clock after being out in the sun all day. That boy has way too much energy! I wish he could bottle some of that energy and give it me - it's not fair for old farts to lose their energy. My get up and go got up and left! John has as much energy as my Dutchie, Syp - Jeez! Adderall helps but the natural stuff in the brain is much better.

It's too early in the day for me to say what will happen. I'm guessing a scuba dive will be on the menu and perhaps some lobster hole scouting - tomorrow is day one of mini-season. I'll full fill my pool duty obligation mid day as long as it's nice again. I also think I'll make a run to World Wide Sports before all the good stuff is sold out when the lobster crowd arrives. I've got to get a new T-shirt or two don't you know.

Tommy is very generous to share his toys with us - boats, tanks, scuba gear, fishing tackle, etc. There is no way I can afford what he does but I try to express my appreciation for John & me being included in the activities whenever I can.

Posted at 06:41 am in General | Comments (0)

Lazy Sunday

Mon 27 July 2009

It was a quite Sunday as some of the boys were recovering from Saturday night while others just decided to sleep late. I think a day of rest was a good thing at least as far as the Tiki Hut crew was concerned. We all did manage to make it into the pool after lunch but the boats didn't leave the docks yesterday. Today is another matter.

As I was going for coffee this morning, Tommy, Matt, Drew, John, Ryan, Jeff, and Amy were headed for the docks to go offshore to the "409" in search of Black fin tuna - I'm rather confident they'll catch some. The plan was to leave for the docks a bit after 6 AM but in fact it was around 7 - no worries, the fish will be there. Jeff & Amy made sandwiches for everyone and Matt & Drew got the beer (a necessity for fishing) & bait. I except they'll be gone most all day although John plans on going to the gym when they return.

Captain Matt went to the Fish Company to buy some shrimp & scallops for dinner last night - he cooked them as well. Matt could have a back-up career as a chef if the current job doesn't work out - the meal was really great. It was Tommy, Drew, John, Matt, and me for dinner - the others went to Lazy Days where we went on Friday. The good news is that everyone doesn't have to go to the same place at the same time. If things go well today, I suspect grilled black fin will be on the menu tonight.

I have this problem of setting a time or dinner but if it's late I get shaky and often a headache. If I know what time dinner will be, I can adjust my schedule. But when dinner is a hour or more later than expected I sometimes have an bit of a problem. No matter what the good intentions are we often find actual dinner time to be later than expected for a variety of reasons. I think my plan will be to eat when I'm ready to eat then maybe have a sample of dinner later.

Matt's computer needs some help - it is slow and will not connect to my network although it did connect a few days ago. The machine is old and full but not as old and full as Tom's old laptop. I offered to work on it but it was suggested I ought not do that while waiting for Captain Matt to complete cooking his wonderful seafood feast - I know not why. No worries, maybe I can help later today?

It was stormy again yesterday but it looks much nicer here today. I hope the wind and rain will stay calm & away while the guys are fishing. I have pool duty at noon when Rush comes on.

Posted at 08:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Stormy Day

Sun 26 July 2009

Yesterday's diving trip was exciting for the crew that went diving. They went to the Eagle for a deep dive and then back to Alligator for a second shallow dive. Reports are that the water was not as clear as it has been and visibility was hampered by the fact it was cloudy. All went well until it was about time to return when a heavy lightening-filled thunderstorm moved in between Tommy's boat and the dock. I was not with them but was told the rain & lightening made things rather exciting. I know I don't like to be in a boat on the water with lightening all around. The good news is everyone got back safely with interesting stories to tell of the rather hair-raising adventure.

It was a stormy day yesterday with nothing but clouds until mid-afternoon when the rain & lightening moved in. I stayed in for the most part except for an outing to the Spanish Garden restaurant to pick up one of their key lime pies. Their pies are home made in Marathon by a women just for this restaurant so you won't get it anywhere else. It is not your traditional key lime pie because it is server cold and the filling is sort of like ice cream in texture but not really ice cream. I decided to buy one to sample for the next few days to determine if I want to take one back with me to Vero.

It was not a "pool" day but the rain didn't stop people from going into the hot tub - the tub is warm and fun in the rain as long as there's no lightening around. I decided to stay out of the water all day but today is a new day.

Jeff and Amy are here and went on the dive trip. After an all night drive they decided it was best to head back to their rental for some rest so they'll be ready for the coming activities. Jeff is a good lobster getter and as far as that goes, so is Amy. There are several seasoned lobster divers so if the weather is in our favor I expect they'll do well this season. If it rains and is cloudy seeing lobsters will be more difficult.

John asked if he could get his nitrox certification while he's here. Of course I think that is a good idea if he can get into a class this coming week which means he may have to ship a day going to the gym. The real question is whether or not a class is available - he'll walk over to the dive shop to check it out this morning.

Kimper and Kevin came by for a visit last night - I've not actually talked to them before then. Both are well and happy to be on holiday here in paradise. They had just come back from dinner with the Brennan clan at Bentley's - the rest of the crew went elsewhere. It was great seeing them one on one rather than at a noisy dinner table. I've chatted with Heather but Ryan is allusive.

Brother Drew and Son John went out together last night and God only knows where they went or what they did. I thought they were going to dinner next door at the Outback but I'm thinking they may have skipped dinner and headed straight to Holiday Isle - I'll get a report later when John gets up I'm sure. At least John is back so I assume Drew is as well.

It is not boring here in Paradise! Today's picture was taken on Friday, not yesterday - what a difference 24 hours makes.

Posted at 06:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Pool Duty

Sat 25 July 2009

Yesterday was a get up late and go to Mango Mike's for breakfast at 11:30 AM - that's what happens when you stay up till 4 AM discussing the big bang theory or whatever. Brother Drew actually got up earlier because he had to work most of the day under the Tiki hut looking out at Alligator - tough work but someone has to do it.

John went to the gym after lunch and Matt hung out around here. Tommy returned from Vero early afternoon but there was not a boat trip yesterday although I think a diving trip is planned for around 11 this morning. For the first time since we've been here it is a bit cloudy this morning and it's raining offshore. No worries...what ever the weather now it is likely to change in a few hours.

Yesterday the crowd had pool duty as seen in today's picture (click on the image). It was a beautiful cloudless day yesterday so why not hang out in the pool? Our crowd represents the largest group here as we usually do each Summer - there are not many other residence here at this time.

I had a router issue which got my attention for several hours yesterday - the router would drop connections to our lap tops. I checked everything and concluded it was the router not the modem, computers, or out side influence like a wireless phone for example. The router reset itself for no apparent reason but that was a good thing. When I rest the hardware to factory defaults it started working again although it is not a secure network now - I'm not worried about encryption. I hope the problem is over now.

Did you miss my web site yesterday? It was down for several hours driving me crazy trying to figure out why. Other sites I have hosted on the same sever were working properly. My files on the sever were all in place - the site has not been hacked. I opened a "ticket" with my host server asking for help but after a few hours - before they could respond - the site came back up. It was a server issue.

The Brennan boys with their significant others have arrived - they came in last night after I retired to my apartment to watch TV. We all went to dinner next door at Lazy Days - one of my favorite restaurants here in Islamorada. The place was very busy last night but we got decent service anyway, The food was excellent as usual. Now that the crowd has grown even bigger, I'm not sure where dinner will be consumed tonight - if I were a betting man I'd say Bentleys.

Posted at 08:22 am in General | Comments (0)

Arrival Day

Fri 24 July 2009

Let the games begin! John drove to the Miami airport last night to fetch Brother drew and Captain Matt. He reports the flight actually arrive a bit earlier (that's a surprise) so he got the guys and headed back to paradise. I don't know when They arrived here to the apartments but John didn't get back to our apartment until around 4:30 - I think a Crown front moved in last night and into the morning. I know when he got back because I could smell the grilled ham & cheese sand which he made at 4:30. Actually I was happy to see he & the boys got back safely and apparently had a good time together upon return.

I think I might cook some bacon this morning in about a hour to see if John wakes up - that will be fun and I love bacon. I used to use this trick on Syp when he was John's age - I'd cook bacon and Syp would come out of his room attracted by the aroma like flies to light. I love bacon - who doesn't? John bought some at the Winn Dixie yesterday on the by one - get one free sale. Other than the first day here, I've not been back to the Winn Dixie but rather have asked John to pick up things as he returns from his daily trip to the gym.

I've been having router problems here - my router just stops working sometimes for no apparent reason. Yesterday it reset itself to factory defaults - how did that happen? I had to hard wire it to my laptop so I could access the router to reconfigure it. I think it is a router problem and not being caused by any external force. I say that because Tom's computer could not stay connected to my router although Mary Ann's computer sitting right next to it could. Knowing that routers use a 2.4GH frequency and wireless phones do too, I asked if Tom had a wireless phone in his apartment and he did. I told him to unplug the phone to se what happens and sure enough he could stay connected. I don't think my router is influenced by anything like that because it's been working ever since i got her.Hmm?

Tommy is returning this afternoon after a trip to Vero for a few days. he had to take care of some business and get a shot. Now that the crowds are arriving, he'll return to jump into the mix of things. The weather is beautiful so I bet a diving trip will be set up for tomorrow. Maybe a trip today if Matt wakes up and feels like going out on the boat after last night. The boys are young and can handle this stuff - I know I could when I was their age.

Unfortunately I've not divorced myself from all news - I still hear the most of the shit that is going on and it makes me sick. Obama is bringing down most everything that is good about America and turn the country into a socialist state. I can only hope that some Democrats put their country in front of their party's far left agenda.

Posted at 08:14 am in General | Comments (0)

Computer Challenges

Thu 23 July 2009

Another day in paradise and I found myself glued to some computer work which, as a nerd, I love. Tom asked if I could help with a couple issues on his new laptop and of course I was more than happy to try. I got started and the next thing I know it's mid-afternoon - for me time flies by when I'm immersed into a project I enjoy.

The first thing Tom wanted is all his files moved from that dinosaur lab top he has to his new machine. He has one of those programs and connecting cables that is suppose to be able to do that but it turned out to be very cumbersome and would not allow him to move pictures as he wanted. So I took that old slow as molasses in winter machine, moved all of his "My Documents" to an external had drive then connected the hard drive to his new machine to upload - it worked perfectly. It took about 45 minutes to download from his old computer and only about 4 minutes to upload to his new machine. Frankly I don't know how he could even use that old computer!

Then he tried to install Office 2007 but when it was installed, he got a message saying it has been installed too many times. He's put it on Kevin's machine, Mary Ann's machine, and his desktop to mention a few - there is some limit built into the software which makes sense. I tried to find the license .DLL and replace it with a new .DLL hoping it would think it was a fresh install - no go. I tried a few other tricks including downloading the home version he had installed from a torrent web site, installing it fresh, then follow the licensing procedure but no go. Clearly Microsoft stores the usage/license data deep in the bowls of some unobscured file where it can not be found or replaced.

After a few hours I moved onto plan B. I once again uninstalled Office 2007 and this time used a registry cleaner to remove old unused entries. I read that if you install an upgrade version of Office, it should work without "remembering" the old installs. I found a torrent of Office 2007 Enterprise edition on a site and from a user I deemed trustworthy - I didn't think the torrent would come with a virus. To download a torrent you need a special program which is free so I installed uTorrent on my laptop to download the .ISO file. Once downloaded I scanned the file for viruses and it came up very clean on over 15 scanners. To "open" the .ISO file you need another special program a copy of which I had on my external hard drive so I installed it on my machine and validated it with a license key I have.

My next task was to "unpack" the .ISO file with the program, PowerISO, then save all the files to a single file I called office. Then I moved that new unpacked file to my external hard drive and then onto Tom's machine. I ran the installer, put in a license key provided, and Tom now has Office 2007 Enterprise addition installed working just as it should. Any of you want to install it on your laptop? John asked me to install it on his which I will do when he wakes up.

We did manage a later afternoon pool duty before supper.Today is just beginning.

Posted at 08:33 am in General | Comments (0)

Still Here

Wed 22 July 2009

Yesterday morning I thought we might be headed back to Vero so that John could take care of some things in Vero. The good news he was able to get what he thought needed to be done by using a marvelous invention called a telephone and help from mom. I've found most things can be done via the phone and help from others although many of us like to do things our way. There for awhile I thought John would be sucked into the Vero black hole.He thankfully concluded that staying here was better than ending the trip.

I didn't sleep well Monday night because something was bothering me and I got a call from my friend in Vero around 11:45 to thank me for my help. I'm happy to help but I would have preferred the call at say 4:00 in the afternoon instead of midnight - I'm not sure why they called so late but it got me up and kept me up. Yesterday was a 'tired' day for me - I didn't even go into the pool. I'm not sure what today will bring.

John and I fetched a chair for Tom up in Key Largo - the couch in his apartment is a bit uncomfortable. So why not buy a comfortable chair for his visit here this year? He's doing well but of course is taking things easy as you would expect.

Tom & Mary Ann took John & I to dinner last night at a wonderful little restaurant called Spanish Garden (see picture). It is owned and run by two guys, is located next to Uncles, and was truly a great experience. They don't have anything fried on the menu and it really is a Spanish style restaurant. We had Tapas ordering 4 different dishes and a great salad with goat cheese and sun dried tomatoes. The owner/chef brought out two dishes at a time and we all shared. Tapas is like ordering 4 appetizers at Uncle's and then sharing it. I think Tapas means small meal in Spanish?

The restaurant was clean, quaint, quiet, and very pleasant - I'd love to return. What a great experience compared to clanging dishes, loud people, large plates, and fried stuff or fish covered with sauce. Don't get me wrong, yellow tail with sauce is good it's just that this was a wonderful dining experience for us all.

Tom asked me if I could help him with his new computer by transferring his files from that laptop he's had since God created the heavens and earth. I'm going to transfer everything to my external hard drive then upload it to his new machine - at least that's my plan. I'll take on the project once I return from coffee. I've got a couple other things I want to check out for Tom - more info to follow.

Still no rain, nice days, and clear nights. I hope it continues.

Posted at 08:18 am in General | Comments (0)


Tue 21 July 2009

The villa came is down - we may be headed home today.

Posted at 08:39 am in General | Comments (0)

Wild Weekend

Mon 20 July 2009

What a wild weekend we had here in paradise with Captain Matt, Wildman Flynn, and their friend Steve - a dude they knew from Vero. The guys played hard but they left yesterday with all their body parts still attached and no new holes in their body. They routine was to sleep until the crack of noon, get up, have food - they called breakfast but was lunch for me - then start their day on Cracker. All that is normal but for them, their day didn't end until the next day usually before the sun came up. They all wanted to stay but they'll be back this weekend.

John left the crew usually by 10 or 11 then went to bed sober. He's been parting with them during the day and into the early evening but not going out to the Tiki Hut at midnight. He's been tame and very helpful to Tommy with regard to moving things around or boat duty. Yesterday he sleep until about 10 - that's the latest yet - and is still asleep of course. My guess is he'll get up in a hour or so, have breakfast, and then off to the gym.

Last night John & I went to Outback for dinner - TB wanted to eat left-overs so he stayed in. I love the coconut shrimp with a creaser salad - John had surf & turf - we were back by 8:30 or 8:45 in time for me to watch a program at nine. There are programs on every night I like to watch usually starting at 9. For some reason I've been staying up until 11 before lights out - what's up with that?

We went to Holiday Isle on the boat yesterday to have lunch - surprisingly the boat was faster than a car because of all the Sunday traffic heading North. I have to say that I think the blackened dolphin sandwich at Holiday Isle is as good as any on the island. Some time this week we'll go to Lor-e-lei so I can compare the two.

It's still early here and another beautiful cloudless day. No clue as to what we'll do today as yet but I'm sure it will include seafood, pool duty, and computer time. With my hot sensitive body I have to be careful in the sun because of the meds - I put on more suntan lotion and a higher number than ever before. Thus far all is well.

Villa Cam is on

Posted at 08:20 am in General | Comments (0)

New Arrivals

Sun 19 July 2009

Captain Matt and Wild man Flynn arrived early Saturday morning - Matt's plane was delayed out of Atlanta because of rain and Friday traffic. When they arrived here, Tommy had two full grouper dinners from Uncles waiting for them - beats left over pizza don't you think? It was a late night or should I say early morning so they didn't get up until the crack of noon or there about. With a late start to the day, Matt, Flynn, and John just headed to the sandbar for an afternoon of babe fishing and consumption of adult beverages. I was invited but thought it prudent not to go.

Tommy purchased some fresh shrimp to cook for dinner when the crew returned. Surprise. Surprise. They came back later than expected, there were things to do, so the 7:00 dinner was pushed back until later - how much later I do not know for sure because a felt weak, tired, and hungry so I ate here in the apartment around 8:30. I enjoy the wonderful things Tommy fixes but I sometimes can't keep waiting and waiting - no matter what time we're scheduled to eat, you can almost guarantee it will be at least a hour or more later. I don't eat much but I do have to keep a schedule.

I've not got a clue as to what will happen today. It's 8:30 and everyone is still asleep - I went for coffee at 6:45 as usual. Matt wanted to go fishing but with a flight out of Miami later today I don't know if that will happen. No worries...he'll be back Thursday night with 10 days of fun ahead of him. I think Flynn will come back as well. As long as they're having fun, it doesn't much matter what the fun is now does it?

Yesterday I went to Winn Dixie with TB & Ty then worked on some ideas for a web site. Later in the afternoon Tommy, Ty, and I had pool duty. BTW, the pool is very nice - not too cool for me.

Late yesterday I got an e-mail asking for me to call back to Vero. It seems someone I know was in jail and didn't have enough money to get out so I sent some cash via Money gram. I don't know why they were in jail because I did not ask nor was I told. I figured they needed my help and the circumstances of why they needed help didn't much matter. Maybe I'll learn more in the next few days?

The weather continues to be beautiful here although Tommy told me rain is forecasted for this coming week. That would be ok as long as it is nice again starting next weekend and for mini-season.

Posted at 08:38 am in General | Comments (0)


Sat 18 July 2009

We left the apartments yesterday morning around 10:30 for a ride out to Alligator and a dive for John& TB. The sky was clear, there was little breeze, and the water was beautiful. We were lucky to find a boat just about ready to leave so we got our own buoy. After the normal first dive of the season fuss, John & Tommy went down while I remained on the boat.They were down about 50 minutes and said it was beautiful. My wish is that the weather and water remain this great for mini-season.

While on the boat I tried to turn on the radio to listen to some AM talk shows. This was not an easy task nor were there instructions to help. One would think you'd see buttons with letters like AM, FM, CD, etc but noooooo none of that. The radio was in code but if you push enough buttons in a variety of sequences, you can get the radio on - this was surprising difficult without a clue as to the meaning of the letters on the dozen or more buttons. Of course I expect Captain Matt and Brother Drew to know but I didn't.

Before going out I went for coffee as usual. There was a lady from Lookout Mountain, Tenn that when she found out I was lived in Atlanta for 41 years asked me if I knew someone. So what is the chance she and I would know the same person in Atlanta given the area has about 4 million people? Shazam - she new Bill Thurman Jr. who is a guy I worked with for the first few years in my insurance career - we both worked for Bill's father. Turns out she is the sister of Bill's best friend whom I did meet about 35 years ago. Amazing don't you think?

,p>Turns out this lady lives here in Islamorada and in Tennessee but mostly here now. She is a member of a club called The Fishing Club and offered to set things up so we could go for dinner there. We'll have to pay but it's a place none of us has been which apparently is good. I'll wait until Mary Ann & Tom get here because I think they would like to try a new eatery here in Islamorada.

I believe Captain Matt and Flynn arrived last night but I did not stay up for them. They plan on fishing but I'm not sure when. Tommy thinks Sunday will be a better day so they can spend today getting "organized". My bet is Matt will want to go today after all, that's whast he flew down here from Atlanta to do this weekend.

Ty arrived last night around 7:30 and wanted tuna at Uncle's - so we all went to Uncle's for dinner. It was as good as expected and I'm pleased to report there where no loud drunks in the main dining room. Tommy even ordered grouper diners to go for both Captain Matt and Wild Man Flunn so they will have something to eat at midnight. My guess is they will have eaten before they get here but of course kids always have room for food.

It is still early so I've not heard from any of the monkeys yet today.

Posted at 01:39 pm in General | Comments (0)

First Day

Fri 17 July 2009

Yesterday I created a MP3 player for a web page then quickly built a very simple page where you can listen to John's demo CD with an intro & two songs. John actually wrote the songs - he and his three band buddies cut the CD last week. I posted to late yesterday but in case you missed it, here is a link to the page . Remember, there was no design put into this page - I just wrote some very simple code to render the one picture and the MP3 player.

My doctor called in (or maybe sent a FAX ) for enough Wellburtin to keep me going down here. It was a remarkable simple process and easier than the alternatives I had. John went to get a haircut and to check out the gym so he picked up the prescription at CVS for me. At least now I may not go any more whacky that normal.

Tommy's boat arrived mid-afternoon in one piece. He and John unloaded the gear on the boat - fishing & diving stuff - and brought it back to TB's apartment. Then of course there was some clean-up and adjusting to do on the boat with more planned for today. I think we're going out to Alligator to either snorkel or dive depending on what TB wants to do. Of course now that the boat is here it needs to be used don't you think?

John joined the gym again although he'll only be here for part of the month - he obsesses on the work out routine he has. I can understand about the obsessing thing although working out is not my interest at the moment. While here, he goes to the gym at least 4 or 5 times a week but not on Sundays - it's close.

The coffee meeting this morning was small but fun. There is a very successful businessman that rides up on his scooter but could be chauffeured in his Bentley if he wanted. What a nice guy who's full of very entertaining stories. I've known him from many years in the past when visiting here but it's always nice to see people again. There also was a lady who when she found I'm a 41 year Atlanta resident asked if I knew a person who was her brother's best friend - that person was Bill Thurman Jr. Hell, not only did I know him but he and I went to work for his dad when we got out of college. I've lost touch with Bill but there were about 3 years in a row when we saw each other at work every day. What a small world, huh?

This woman who's name I shall not disclose invited me to go to the The Islamorada Fishing Club for dinner saying I'm her guest. No, she did not offer to pay for me and the boys but she has arranged for us to try a new and different private club for dinner. I bet Mary Ann and Tom would like to try it so I may just wait until they get here next week to go - I could take them, TB, and myself. What an amazing meeting, huh?

It's drop dead beautiful here so I'm going to move on to today's fun in paradise. Later.

Posted at 08:37 am in General | Comments (1)

Arrived in Paradise

Thu 16 July 2009

It's Thursday, this must be Islamorada aka. Paradise.We made it down in good time with no problems. I successfully got my attack cat into the villa without being noticed. Everything here is like I left it last year - needed a new paint job and furniture but if the owner did that he'd likely want to go up on rent.

I went for coffee this morning to find the same people there today as where there when I left a year ago. I would have slept in this morning but my alarm cat decided I needed to get up. I was not sleepy last night and once in bed I fell asleep for about 30 or 40 minutes then woke up again. I wanted to get back asleep but I just couldn't so....I used the hot bath method to see if that would help and it did. John's bathroom has a tub but mine does not so I went in there for my soaking. There was plenty of hot water but the tub here is not nearly as deep as mine in Vero so I could completely submerge my body. None the less it got me relaxed and within a matter of just a few minutes I went to sleep and stayed asleep except for the two times Sally decided I should scratch her - I was able to go back to sleep.

When John and I went to the Winn Dixie we picked up some pork chops for TB to grill last night - he did a great job. After a pool soaking and then a hot tub soaking he grilled around 8:30 which puts dinner later than I like. It was wonderful but I would liked to have eaten earlier - I'm going to see what I can do to change the dinner hour.

As you can see, I have internet connection but I did have to hook up my own Comcast access because the weak router in the office doesn't get a signal here. No worries, I called Comcast and they had me up and running in a couple hours although I did need to call back. When I gave the Comcast agent my modem's MAC number I was told I'd be able to connect. When I tried, Comcast wanted me to download their 3.65MB installation package which I did not want to do. I called service, got an intelligent guy on the line, and got connected. Life is good and my wireless is set up for those who may want to use it. Beg and I'll give you the access code!

Tommy's boat should arrive earlier afternoon if all goes as expected. John is on call to go help launch it and unload it - there are tanks and fishing equipment on the boat. The plan is to go out to alligator tomorrow for the first dive of the year. I've agreed to be the boat sitter while Tommy & John go under into the beautiful world at Alligator.I'm happy to do that knowing how much fun diving is when you are relatively new at it. Besides, maybe I can get TB to cook for us again.

When I got up this morning to go to coffee I wanted to take my meds but somehow I managed to forget to bring my bottle of Wellburitin - how did I manage to do that because I remember putting the pills in a separate bottle just for the trip. I would just skip the meds for a few days to see how I feel except I don't think I should just stop. My plan is to call Dr. Director's office this morning when they open and ask that they call in a prescription to the CVS pharmacy here in Islamorada. Alternatively, I could ask my cousin Alice to get into my house, grab the bottle, and then give it to Mary Ann & Tom to bring down tomorrow. I've got a plan and a backup.

Jeff called when I got back from coffee to see how things are going. He, Amy, and Sammy will be here a week from Saturday.

John's 3 song demo- click here

Posted at 08:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Leaving This Morning

Wed 15 July 2009

I'm going to pick up John shortly for our trip to paradise - he'll be driving of course. In fact, except for my morning coffee outings, I may not get behind the wheel of my car again until I drop John off back here in Vero when we return. When I was young I liked to drive but now I don't even like going to Publix or Wally World. I guess it's an old fart thing.

Well I guess I'm as ready as I can be for this year's trip - I'm hoping my meds put me in a space where I have energy and want to do things. Sometimes in the past I've just felt like doing nothing even though I'm in paradise. Dr. Director has helped me a lot and things are much better. One thing I've been doing over the past several weeks is I soak in a very hot tub just as I try to go to sleep. I have this tingling all over my hot bod and I've not got a clue as to why. This tingling usually only manifests it's self as I'm going to bed. I know what you're thinking - restless body syndrome. Actually this is a bit different and not as severe although still bothersome. I'm wondering if it's the 300mg of Wellbutrin? Maybe I'll try some different things while in the Keys?

When John was here on Monday we talked about a lot of stuff including his school this Fall. He tells me everything is submitted and this week he should hear from FSU. Now that he changed his major to International Affairs, I'm more optimistic that he will get in without having to sit a semester out while he takes one more course. The truth is that getting in is important because once in your are generally able to move from school to school although I think International Affairs sounds pretty sexy - I wonder what he can do with that degree? Doctor, Indian Chief, or Chippendale Boy...who knows?

I'm not sure when I'll be back online in the Keys - if things go well, that should be this afternoon. With the big problem I had last year getting online I'm not as optimistic as I'd like to be. I'm not counting on The Palms for wireless but rather my own connection. It will be a very pleasant surprise if The Palms has a wireless system that will work for me. I'll know just after lunch today I suppose

Have you every looked for a file folder and it was not where it used to be? Sometimes I accidentally move a file folder or worse, delete it. That happened with my main 'website design' folder yesterday and I could not find it. It was gone. I looked in my Recycle Bin but it was not there. I looked in other folders but still could not find it. I back things up so I looked on my external hard drive and fortunately found a copy there. It had not been updated in weeks but none the less I got most stuff back. What a pain, huh?

I've posted the pictures Syp sent me to my PhotoAlbum here so you can see them all but I also post the one from the hospital today to wet your appetite to see the others. They are all great especially the ones with Yari holding his little brother. Syp tells me Djem is a calm little baby - he must take after his mom. On the other hand, Yari was a rather active little baby so he must have taken after his energy-filled dad. I hope Djem remains calm during his first year so as mommy and daddy don't wear themselves out like the did with Yari. Time will tell, huh?

Posted at 06:04 am in General | Comments (0)

Djem has Arrived

Tue 14 July 2009

Syp and Sjak have a new son and they named him Djem which is pronounced "jam" - like what you put on bread. Syp tells me they met a couple while on vacation who had a son they named Djem and they liked it. I totally agree - I think it's a cool name. I've got some pictures I'll post son of the growing Arends family - Yari is really getting big. Heck, I think I'll just upload them all to my photoalbum so Wendy, Marilyn, Wheels, etc can look at the baby pictures - you know how women are about baby pictures. Look at the Djem folder.

Djem and mom are doing fine and Yari is becoming a very protective and caring big brother. Now they need a little girl just to round thinks out I think - what do you think? I've been told that's not in the cards but you never know. I remember Sjak saying one was enough and then along came Djem.

My buddy Mike Gately sent me a picture of him with his 14 year old daughter, Rachel. Gosh, I can remember when she was just a young girl playing with dolls and computers and now look at her. How do these kids grow up so fast? Mike says she'll start high school this year so before you turn around she'll have her master's degree in this or that. I think I understand - kids get older and I just remain the same.

I've got all the things I need to have done before I leave completed. I have my mail stopped and a guardian for my house with keys and pass codes. Frankly I don't think anything will happen around here because my house is too visible in downtown Vero on a street with regular traffic both day and night. But, it doesn't hurt to take the steps just in case - I do have a monitored alarm system after all.

John came by yesterday so we could organize and decide when to head down. It looks like 7:30 Wednesday morning is going to be the launch date and time - we'll be in Islamorada in time for a blackened fish sandwich at Lorelei's. John said he talked to Flynn over the weekend and it seems Flynn, his buddy Artie, and Captain Matt are coming in on Friday night to fish over this coming weekend. I sure hope the Southport is there by then and according to Tommy it should be there on Thursday. John is ready to go.

John brought the new CD he and his fellow band members cut over the past week. I was frankly surprised at how good it was. The main song was as good as many I've heard and better than others. I don't think the Dave Mathews Band needs to worry just yet but this CD is a start. A start to what you ask? Heck I've got no idea and the band - The Summer Rush - probably doesn't know either. I like the name of the group as well - what do you think? I don't think the music is uploaded to the internet yet but if and when it is, I'll post a link.

Posted at 06:13 am in General | Comments (2)

TB Updates

Sun 12 July 2009

Tommy has called several times from paradise with updates - he thought he was going down to settle in and relax but anything but that has happened. He's been working on getting his boat down there and at this point has given up on the original dude in favor of someone else. With the help of a guy named Artie (friend of Matt & Flynn) who works at the Vero Beach Marina, he got the boat measured properly and now has someone else working on bringing it down. It seems his boat is within a width range where the rules are not as difficult. It's the weekend but by tomorrow, he expects someone to be lined up for towing it down by mid-week. He said if everything else fails, he'd drive back to Vero and run it down. Stay tuned.

TB said that he believes that Donna said The Palms now has wireless internet through out the building. I'm going to call Donna this morning and see what she can tell me. If that fails, I'll call the Palms office tomorrow. Regardless, I'm going to bring my modem, router, and cables just in case even if there is wireless available.

TB went to my apartment yesterday to check things out. He turned on the water but discovered John's bathroom has a running toilet. Tommy said it looks like it needs a new flapper and suggested I call Donna. That would cost the owner $100 with a plumber's service call so I told him just to leave it and I'll deal with it when we get down. Replacing a flapper is usually very easy so John & I can do that and in turn demonstrate to the owner we continue to be good tenants.

Yesterday I had a sore throat and an ear ache but this morning it is gone. Do you remember my ear ache fr0om the Palms last year - I thought it was a problem caused by the pool but maybe not. The important thing is I feel fine this morning so I'm not catching a Summer cold just before our trip - that would really suck.

I worked on a site for someone yesterday by search out dozens of sites developed for people with a similar business. There should be no surprise when I tell you they all are similar in nature. If you went to any news site like CNN or FOX for example, they look the same except for the name. Ditto for newspapers sites, electronic stores, and retailers. So my challenge here will be to try to create a site that his updated and consistent with the profession and owner's vision.

You know I have the Adobe CS4 software on my computer even though I don't now how to effectively use it yet. What I have discovered is that some flash objects I find on other sites I can download the .swf flash movie, use the flash decompiler software I discovered last weekend to produce an editable .fla flash file which I can then load in my Flash 4 program. Some files I can edit and some I've not figured out just yet. The files with a movie within a movie is still above my understanding but 'basic' flash movies with text and pictures I can edit. I've not learned how to add additional images or text but I can replace images and edit text. This is a start and is exactly how I learned to use a image editor - paint.NET - by trial and error...lots and lots of errors. I'll likely learn Flash and Photoshop the same way - I'm too impatient to actually follow instruction material. You see instructions start at the beginning and then develops your understanding of the software. What I do is identify what I actually want to do with the software and then search for the answer. My mind is already full of useless information so I just want to add useful understanding of Adobe, not all the details. Worry not, I'm confident I'll learn as needed.

Posted at 08:00 am in General | Comments (0)

The Meeting

Sat 11 July 2009

The business meeting yesterday was a long one - about a hour. As usual, there where only about 8 people there - the same 8 that come every time. The list issue came up resulting in a compromise regarding the e-mail address of those who chose to want to add their e-mail address. Some attending don't like all the junk they get and they think e-mail addresses are an invasion of privacy. That may indeed be true for them but that's not a reason to block others who have a different opinion. So we compromised by adding a "warning" about putting information on the list they don't want others to have.

This list already has telephone numbers on it so how much more will adding an e-mail address invade someone's privacy - after all, you can delete or block e-mails sent to you. I don't know this as fact but I'd bet the barn the ones opposing the e-mail address addition are liberals. Like most liberals, they determine what they think is good and then impose their beliefs on others. Frankly, I don't think it's anyone else's business as to whom I give my e-mail address or telephone number as far as that goes.

The meetings where changed back to monthly from quarterly on a vote of 5 - 2. Of the 5 voting for the change back, this was the first meeting they've ever attended - I wonder if they will come every month. I'll be watching and I promise I'll ask then why they did not attend in the event they miss one. You see I have to go to every meeting a secretary so this is an additional and unnecessary burdened. Besides there is absolutely nothing so important we have to meet every month and if there is something really important, a meeting can be called at anytime.

Ive been typing this on my laptop this morning because my power is out and has been out for almost a hour. One sure way to get the power back on is for me to drag my generator out and set it up. I may do that because I never have tested the connection to my circuit panel to confirm it works like I expect it to work. I just don't want to create noise on a Saturday morning too early. I'll decide after I type this.

One thing I've learned about building a web site - woman are a lot more particular than are men about the design. Actually that does not surprise me but up until now I never really thought about it.In part, I think the sites I build are neat, attractive, and welcoming to anyone who visits the site. I don't necessarily believe anyone disagrees with that but individual\'s view of what they want may be entirely different than my vision - of course that is fine but leaves me wondering what I should build instead.I find that what I build that looks good may not be appropriate for an individual or business. As my Dad used to say, "that's why they make both Fords and Chevrolet, not everyone likes the same thing". I'm beginning to process some thoughts I have about the sites I build but I'll disclose that later - this is called a 'tease')

Did you hear about TB's boat problem? It seems the professional boat hauler over looked getting a wide load permit to take Tommy\'s boat to the Keys. Worse yet, he was told it will take from 3 to 10 days to get a permit. Maybe it\s just me but I would expect someone who tows - haul things for a living would know that, wouldn't you? It is issue but I'm confident TB will have the Cracker down there this coming week.

Posted at 11:20 am in General | Comments (0)

Business Meeting

Fri 10 July 2009

This morning we are going to have our quarterly business meeting - I'm not sure what is going to happen but I will be taking the minutes. I say that because of the brouhaha over my adding e-mails of those members who voluntarily wanted their e-mail added to the membership list. I just did it without asking for some permission through a group meeting. Frankly I think this is a bunch of nonsense suggesting members need to get permission to do things - that's BS. And a few weeks ago we need to get some more chips, no one seemed to be in charge, so I found some on the internet, ordered them, and got reimbursed by the treasurer. I bet someone is not going to like the fact I did that "without permission" via a group vote. BS again! Next thing you know someone will want to set a limit as to how many cups of coffee one can drink!

All of my adult life I've made decisions without organizing a committee for discussion. Grant, some of my decisions might have been poor ones like that one I made back in 1972, but for the most part, I'm the one who suffers the consequences good or bad. When Carey, Lamar, and I were in business together with our 9 employees, we had to decide who was going to be the president of our little company. Carey new someone who ran a business consulting firm so they were brought in - at a hefty fee I might add - to help us decide who was to be President. We all took some tests and met individually with the consultants. After about a week they came back, got the three of us into a room, and presented the result. You guessed it...I "tested" the highest for being the dude what makes the decisions on running our firm. Well that's all good and well in theory but of course when it came to major decisions, we collectively talked about it.

I'm not one who wants to waste time on making decisions nor am I out to please everyone with the decisions I do make. My point here is that I hold one of the only two offices we have and as such I'll do what I believe is the correct thing. Of course you all know I'm always right but not everyone in our coffee klatch understands that just yet. No, I don't want to be the head dude but if given responsibilities I'm going to make decisions. Hell next thing some will want to vote on is how many copies of our group's meetings I should bring to hand out.

I might be wrong (of course I'm not) but I think some folks just seek power over others - like that self-absorbed elitist socialist President we have in Washington. This whole thing reminds me of what a condo association must be like. Or maybe a neighborhood planning committee. Or just about any social - driven organizations as far as that goes. It will be interesting this morning.

TB leaves for the Keys today but I still don't know the status of the red truck. I wonder if he'll have Gene drive it down? I know he wants it down there as soon as possible so waiting until someone else comes down may not suit him. I'm sure I'll find out soon enough. I sure hope the weather cooperates while we are there.

Yesterday while having a burger at lunch I was setting in front of my big TV when I stumbled across the movie, August Nash. Now I've seen that movie before but it grabbed me once again so I watched it a second time. I really like plot behind the movie and the superb acting by the 12 year old lead actor. There was some great music in it including some cello playing. Feel good at the end movies I like and this was clearly one of them.

Michael Jackson has not re-appeared.

Posted at 06:05 am in General | Comments (0)


Thu 09 July 2009

Lately I noticed that I don't have much of an appetite that is until I start eating and then I can eat normal - that is 'normal' for me. So even though I'm not sensing a hunger, I find myself having to start eating something and then I have no problem. What's up with that I wonder? My best guess it is the common side affects of Adderall and as long as I recognize that then there is no problem. What I don't want to do is skip eating something at least 3 times a day although you know me...it may not be a lot at any given time. I can always eat ice cream or chocolate no matter what.

Yesterday I filled a small nylon bag with the medications I want and need to take with me. I decided to do it now to make certain I don't forget anything. So in separate pill bottles a put enough of the things I take to last for the trip - I was afraid I might leave something behind if I just threw all my pill bottles in the bag the morning we leave. I'm continuing to stack stuff for the trip on my filing cabinet and except for packing my g-string I don't think there will be a lot added to the stack. I've got computer stuff, cameras, toiletries, a roll of quarters for the laundry - I'll wear the same thing every day but John the fashion-conscious babe magnet will of course what to be crisp and fresh every day. I'm into the old and wrinkled look - it seems to fit me. Stop it! I hear you laughing and agreeing with me!

I've worked on Kathryn's website a bit yesterday adding titles, key words, and a description to each page. I also created a '.xml' site map that I will submit to Google and other search engines once Kathryn is through editing, changing, or adding to the pages I produced. I've read where it is not smart to submit a site too often so waiting for awhile makes sense to me. Kathryn has been busy so I don't know when she'll get around to reviewing my work but when she does, I can edit while in the Keys.

Yesterday I decided I wanted a hamburger for lunch but I didn't want to drive to get one so I ordered take-out at the Cuban coffee shop. The burger was great tasting and looking like it was freshly made by hand, not a frozen patty you get at fast food joints. The burger was good and the twist here is that it was served on Cuban bread, not a bun. Now that's a new one for me and one I liked a lot so I'll do that again. I'm thinking that if I start eating a bigger lunch I'll have more energy at the end of the day. Normally I eat cold fruit mixed in with yogurt or cottage cheese and nuts. It is fresh, cool, and tastes great but there's not a lot of there - there. You'd think I'd have this all figured out after several decades but the twist is that my hot body continues to change - some may suggest it mutates.

I think it is about time for Sjak to download rug rat #2 - Yari's new baby brother. Syp told me she was due in July but I don't remember what time in July. I was going to call Syp yesterday but by the time I remembered, it would have been too late in the land of windmills and wooden shoes. Did you know that Syp's Mom actually has wooden shoes she wears when working in her garden? No joke, wooden shoes are not just for tourists.

Posted at 05:39 am in General | Comments (0)

Sun Sensitive

Wed 08 July 2009

The mystery of my prescription refill has been solved - the doctor's office called it in late and as a result the Wally World pharmacy thought it was not to be renewed. Your basic miss-communication my thinks. That still does not make my good buddies with my doctor but at least I don't think he was ignoring me. So for now, I'm not going to make any changes but frankly I might in the future. Why should I pay someone and think they are not responsive to my needs?

I did go to the beach yesterday for my usual hour outing and when I returned my face was red even though I put suntan lotion on it and I was only facing the sun for 30 minutes. I flip onto my stomach so for 30 minutes I had no direct sun on my face. Wow! What this tells me is the meds are indeed making me a lot more sensitive to the sun than I even imagined. That means I'd better be damn careful in the Keys not to really hurt myself. I picked up some new lotion with a higher blocking factor but it may not be high enough. Caution will be the way I need to approach pool duty and boat trips. BTW, the ocean was drop dead beautiful today with the wind out of the West - it even looked clearer than I've seen it at any time this year.

I helped TB yesterday with his musical vehicle dance. He dropped the Tahoe at the Barnes Estate West where I fetched him to take him to pick up the repaired red truck. I think he and John loaded some things on the truck today for the trip down on Friday. My question at this point is who will drive the red truck down? Tommy will drive his Tahoe so he can pull Drew's boat down. I'm sure he has a plan I just don't know what it is.

I continue to put items on the filing cabinet ion my office I want to take down. Each day I remember something or buy something I think I may want or need like stronger suntan lotion, after sun body lotion, visine, and body soap - I may need to bath while I'm there although going in the pool might be good enough. Each year I tell myself I don't need to pack so much stuff so maybe I'll do better this year. One bag is all I'll take with clothes and such with another bag for extraneous stuff like computer gear.

I'm beginning to worry a bit about my air handler in the laundry room. It is making noises that it's not made before but I don't think it will give out just yet. I sure hope it does give out while I'm in the keys even though I'll raise the settings while I'm gone. As a back-up, I think I may turn on my wall mounted unit with a even higher setting so if the main unit goes out, it will come on. It sure is nice to have that back-up unit that frankly is big enough to cool the living room, kitchen , and my bedroom - it's a 16,000 BTU unit.

Sally cat has grown to where she wants to be around me all the time - of course you can understand that. Trouble is she likes to sit right in front of me while I'm working on my computer and even sits on my keyboard causing shortcut keys to do something I don't want done. She has even gotten where she will not run and hide if I have visitors and in fact will allow John to pick her up. She is not a lap cat and for that I think I'm glad - being to friendly can be a real pain.

Kathryn asked me if I could "work" on her site while in the keys - but of course. I loaded her website files onto a flash drive along with a few other files that I might need. My laptop does not have the software my desktop has but I've done all the coding manually so I really don't need any additional software. I do like to use Dreamweaver for my final editing because it makes things so damn easy but I can still do it without the program. I'm do things the old fashion way..the hard way.

Michael Jackson still has not risen from the deceased.

Posted at 06:02 am in General | Comments (0)

Internet at The Palms

Tue 07 July 2009

So I called Comcast yesterday to set up internet connection for Villa 412 in The Palms. My first problem was that when I dialed the 1-800 number, the computer routed me to my service district (as it should) but Monroe County is in the South Florida district so I started holding for my transfer. When I got a real person on the phone I was able to have my inactive account from last year reviewed and then she said all I need to do when I get there is give them the MAC number for my modem. So why is it I feel uneasy this morning? Will it be as simple as just giving them a MAC number? Well it should be that simple but I just have this bad feeling in my stomach and it's not because of the road-kill I had for dinner last night.

I've started my preparation for the trip even though I still have a good bit of time. Yesterday I gathered all the equipment for my internet set-up including several different types and lengths of cable, my router, my modem, my villa cam, and some switches. I think I have all I need to do what I want to do. And yes boys and girls, I'll have my high gain router antennas with me so you should get a good signal. Also when my post woman came by, I gave her a 'hold mail' request for the period of time I'll be gone. I'd stop my newspaper as well except I don't get a newspaper.

I called Wally World to renew a prescription and was told it was out and they would have to call my 'regular' doctor which they did. When they called back I was told I needed to call my doctor's office which I will this morning. What's up with that I wonder? In the past it has been renewed as requested - why do I need to call now? Well, I'll do so later when the office opens to see what that's all about. Fortunately I'm not out of the meds but then again I don't want to run out in the Keys.

You know, I like my dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, but my internist seems standoffish to me. I'm sure he is qualified but when I first met him I asked if he liked to be called by his first name which is how I address my other doctors having asked the same question. His reply was "doctor" works well around here. I don't know about you but I consider this a bit arrogant after all, I did politely ask and I'm the son of a bitch that pays his damn bills. Am I just out of line? I'm going to be very interested on what I find when I call later this morning.

Today has started nice as it has in the past few days but by afternoon, the storms roll into the area. I've been without beach duty for over a 10 days now and as a result I feel the need for some beach duty. I've got to go to Publix and Wally World this morning but maybe I'll head over after that.

One thing I don't like about this time of the year is that of favorite talk show guys are gone on vacation. This week both Glen Beck And Rush Limbaugh are gone as well as Neal Cuvuto (sp) on FOX News at 4 pm daily. Why don't they take time off while I'm in the Keys? Actually I do like to listen to Rush while performing pool duty.

Posted at 08:35 am in General | Comments (0)

Getting Ready

Mon 06 July 2009

This morning started early when TB called at 6:45 to as for a ride from a car repair shop to his home - he is getting the power window on the driver's side of the red truck repaired. It seems it works but only when it wants to work so fixing it before the Keys is a good thing. Then I went for coffee as usual and when I returned, TB called to ask for a ride from the boat launch back to his river side estate. He's going to be pulling the boats today in preparation for the trip on Friday.

John is going to help Tommy this morning with pulling the boats and loading this, that, and whatever on the boat for the trip. You probably know TB has hired a big tractor to tow the boat down rather than bulling it with his Tahoe. Frankly that Tahoe has plenty of power but TB thinks it might wear him out towing the big boat. Knowing how demanding towing the other boat I tend to agree with him. The probably is who will be down there on Friday to help Tommy get the stuff off the boat and over to his apartment? He could do it but it would be terrible if he pulled something which hindered his ability to dive. He always has a plan so I'm confident he'll get it resolved.

I've not told Tommy yet but Donna will give him the keys to my apartment so I can get it from him once I arrive. That means we could go down anytime after this coming weekend depending on John's schedule. My plan was to go down on Wednesday, July 15th but it could be as early as Monday. It seems to me John wants to go back up to FSU before heading to the Keys but I'm not sure why. People sure are busy, huh?

The person I mentioned I wanted to update her website wants to look at what I've got in mind. She will be over here on Friday so that we can discuss my work and her site in general. The problem as I see it is she apparently does not own her domain name. That may or may not be a problem - the web firm she's been using for 10 years should transfer it to her name instead of their's. The domain can remain parked at registrar.com but simply add her to the account or change names on the account - I'll look into it so I'll have answers by Friday.

This morning I returned my Tanzanite to my safety deposit box at the bank - I will admit I love looking at those stones. They probably would be safe in my safe here but why take a chance? After the bank I headed to Wally World to turn in a prescription renewal so that I'll have what I need while in the Keys. This prescription is for a schedule II drug so call-ins are not allowed meaning I couldn't get a renewal in the Keys if I needed it. Be prepared.

Kathryn is back from her trip but hasn't contacted me about her new site yet. I'm not worried if she's not worried. The only little catch is the pictures I put up of her and her partner are not her and her partner. My guess is she'll get with me this week but if not, I'll have my laptop with me in the Keys. Which leads me to the task of arranging for internet again this year and hopefully without all the hassles of last year.

Posted at 10:14 am in General | Comments (0)


Sun 05 July 2009

My headache event continued yesterday morning and into early afternoon but as is often the case, after 36 hours, it went away and I feel good this morning...wanna feel? Rather than wait too long, I took strong pain meds which chased the headache away and made for a better day. Usually I just stick to Tylenol III until I can't stand it but having been through this before I know what was coming. The real key here is to identify just a headache from a headache event. Headaches are easily managed by Tylenol III but headache events are not.

No meds for me on Saturday except Wellbutrin which I do take everyday and of course the headache meds. I took the day off because frankly I did not sense the need for Adderall when I got up - what's up with that? I only got about 5 hours of sleep so I thought for sure I'd want to take some. Strangely I got about 8 hours of sleep last night (much needed I may add) but this morning I sensed the need I did not yesterday. What's up with that? So rather than a 20mg XR tablet I took a 10mg IR tablet so let's see how the day goes. On Friday morning knowing I had a lot to do, I took two 20mg XR with a great active day as a result but no feeling of "being on something".

The question is whether or not the meds or my work kept me going into early evening. On Friday I discovered a new piece of software that is really cool for me and I played with it most of the day. The only person that may have a full appreciation and understanding of what I'm about to say is Son Syp, Dutchie Design Master. Often I find 'Flash' objects I like on site but I didn't have a clue as to how to edit them into something I wanted - for example change the pictures, text, that sort of thing. Then I got Adobe Flash which is the Flash standard application in the design world - it is also so very very complicated I still don't have a clue. But you know what... 6 years ago I didn't know how to write the code for a link but today I can code sites. So I can learn Flash if I live long enough. Here comes the cool thing, I've found a way to convert a .FLV file into a .FLA file!! I can see your eyes rolling back in your head now. The thing is, you can't edit a .FLV file but you can edit a .FLA file with Adobe Flash. This means that eventually if I find a Flash object I like, I can converted into an editable file, edit it to suit me, then publish it again into a new Flash object for a website. Now do you believe I'm a real geek? Jeez! Who else who get excited about this stuff?

Posted at 08:40 am in General | Comments (0)

Independence Day

Sat 04 July 2009

Today we celebrate the independence of America from what is now our closest ally and international partner, the Brits. I started the day earlier than usual by watching a series on The History called the Revolutionary War - a fitting thing to do I thought. What a truly remarkable story is that of America's fight for independence. The rag-tag group of poorly armed and poorly organized farmers, craftsman, and shopkeepers came together to defeat a superior force in size and in training - a British army that before now had defeated all that would oppose them. It was the shear will and love of country coupled with extreme courage that enabled the Americans to defeat a overwhelmingly superior British army.

The series spoke to just how many times the Americans were pushed back and how many times they barely survived in horrible conditions. But survive they did. The story of America's independence is amazing - one can't help but to be proud today of those amazing people. So today I will not permit the liberal loons in Washington who want us dependent on government to ruin my day - I simple will ignore those bastards and in stead enjoy this celebration.

Yesterday I had the wife of someone I know and her friend come over to show me a tanzanite ring she had bought on a TV auction but has a 30 day return policy. She asked about the quality of the stone having been told on the TV auction is was the best of the best - she also asked to see my tanzanite which I had retrieved from my safety deposit box. The stone in the ring she had was a good stone no doubt but when compared to my gems, the difference were clear. I did conclude the cost of the ring was in line for the size and quality of the gemstone.

Much to my surprise the women spent almost two hours looking at my tanzanite, talking about gems, and actually wanting to look at my whole collection of colored gemstones. I enjoyed their visit because I really like talking about tanzanite - but you boys and girls know that by now, don't you. I was asked to hold two stones in the sense that she might want to buy one and asked me not to sell them without letting her know - I'm not having people beating down my door to buy tanzanite so I'm most happy to oblige her. I've not got a clue as to what she may or may not do but as I've said time and time again, I believe my best interest is to hold the gems for sale in the future.

I woke with a headache yesterday but one Tylenol III did the trick in the morning and then one in the afternoon - this was not a 'headache event' like I sometimes have. This morning I woke up with a headache again and thus far one Tylenol is all that has been needed - time will tell as the day moves along. I've got more news from yesterday and a busy day today. I've discovered some new software which will help me a lot in a certain area in which I'd like to try building a site - tune in tomorrow.

Posted at 07:02 am in General | Comments (0)

Losing Freedoms

Fri 03 July 2009

This morning there was a large group having coffee - folks who can't always come have the day off for the Fourth of July celebration this weekend. This holiday has always been one of my favorites because we here in the colonies celebrate our independence from England. The early settlers in America did not want their lives run by some damn bureaucrat in England. Unfortunately we are losing the freedoms Americans have fought for for over 250 years - we are now losing our freedoms to the damn radical liberal bureaucrats in Washington!

If you think I'm just blowing smoke as a conservative, think again. Look what is going on around you and in Washington. When the government takes control of banks, insurance companies, and car companies then it's been taken away from the owners. Now government will dictate how much people can be paid, what cars to build, and how much money can be loaned and at what interest rate.

What is even more scary is this take-out continues with your health care and your home, cars, etc. With Cap & tax, the bureaucrats will tell you what kind of car you can buy through placing emission standards & fuel mileage mandated for new cars. The government will tell you what kid of house you can build and appliances you can buy through conservation standards. And God only knows what happens when government takes over health care and gives coverage to those who do not have it by taxing people who so. Let me ask you a simple question. If all of a sudden there are 30, 40, or 50 million more people with health coverage but the number of doctors and nurses has not changed, what do you think is going to happen? Long waits? Rationing? Or worse yet, some GD bureaucrat dictating who you can see, when you can see them, what treatments you can get, and in fact if you will get treatment at all.

Some of you may think I'm being an alarmist - it is you I'm afraid who just does not have a clue. Liberals want to control every aspect of your lives and make you more dependent on government than you may already be.Tell me, don't you think you should be able to decide what car you buy, what doctor you see, what treatment you get, and how you heat your home? With all of this over the top regulations, I can see the bureaucrats telling you how cool you can keep your house in the Summer or how warm in the Winter.

So with the Fourth of July being tomorrow I'd like to suggest you take time to think about all the freedoms you are losing. Unfortunately, I'm afraid you ain't seen nothing yet!

I've made myself ill - I think I'll have some ice cream while I'm still allowed!

Posted at 11:37 am in General | Comments (0)

New Project

Thu 02 July 2009

My buddy at the transcription service in Atlanta for whom I built a website, PeachtreeSuite.com, referred me to a law firm seeking help with their site especially as it relates to SEO. Well, I'm not a SEO expert but I sure have learned a good bit since I've been trying to help myself and others. This lawyer specializes in DUI arrests and wants to be on page one of Google instead of page three when 'Atlanta DUI Attorney' is "Googled". Well being on page 3 out of over 300,000 Google pages for those search words is not bad IMO. He doesn't have 'DUI' in his URL like most others ahead of him so I'm not sure what I could do to improve is postioning.M

I spent a day doing research and trying other search terms only to discover he was on page one for many searches - he already has good positioning. Nonetheless, I do have some ideas that might improve his positioning and he's asked me to try them out. Now comes the problem for me...his host server does not use a cpanel for site administration which up until now is the only thing I've known. The site only has a FTP server for uploading, downloading, and editing - this is a system I've never used. After hours of trying to figure it out I asked for help - when in doubt, read the instructions or ask for help. The guy who servers his site was helpful but clearly he understood how things were done and didn't understand what I didn't understand.

Finally I concluded it was going to be too much trouble for me which would turn what I usually enjoy into work. I politely told the attorney that I did not think I had enough experience in the administration of his host so rather than screw things up, I told him I thought it best I leave things alone. Then the attorney asked me if I could move his whole site to a server with which I did not the administrative process and of course I could do that. I was a bit uncomfortable in taking the site away from his current web guy but if after making sure he did not have contractual problems I would switch his site. Well this bothered me so early this morning I started working on a FTP client in a manner I've never done before - bingo...I figured it out. I discovered a way to edit on his host without all the download - upload hassles using the FileZella program. Heck yesterday I couldn't even figure out how to get into his site's directory much less edit anything. Now I'm not sure my ideas will pay off but I did learn a lot in this whole process.

I had a horribly restless night last night having to get up 4 times to soak in a hot tub. I find that helps me fall back asleep so rather than just lying in bed, I sit in a tub of hot water for ten minutes. I'm not sure why I was restless - it could have been my mind was racing on this project I just mentioned. It could be I ate too much of that great ice cream John got for me too late in the evening giving me a sugar rush. Or it could be I'm cutting in half the sleeping aid I use which by the way was fine earlier in the week. I want to be able to go to sleep and stay asleep then awake rested - wishful thinking on my part. Once again I'm testing myself like a good lab rat should.

It has been rainy, cloudy, and generally nasty this week but today is nice thus far. If it stays nice, I may go for a hour of beach duty - the Islamorada trip is approaching and I want to be ready for the intense sun and pool duty.

Posted at 09:16 am in General | Comments (0)

Leftist Take-Over

Wed 01 July 2009

Yet another day and Michael Jackson still has not risen from the deceased to do the "tour to end all tours" scheduled for this Summer. But at least his army of fans will be able to view his skinny body at the end of this week. Did you see where the autopsy report had him at 119 pounds?! Can that possibly be true? Jeez. The so much other important stuff going on that I wish was being reported where the dumb masses can hear or read about it.

Brother Drew sent me an e-mail in amazement that Al Franken got elected to the US Senate. My response is that the voters of Minnesota get what the deserve - a hate filled, angry extreme left wing nut case. Unfortunately he has a vote in the US Senate that will in turn affect all Americans. The Senate is our last hope of stopping the massive government take over of the energy and health care industries. It scares the living daylight out of me that some GD government pinhead pencil pusher will decide who I can see for health care and what treatment I can seek. If you don't think the health care bill is a total government take over you are neither uninformed, stupid, or both. I know Bama says it's not a take over but he lies. He's lied about no increase in taxes. He's lied about the stimulus package. He's lied about unemployment. He's lied about Cap & Tax. He'll say anything - you should what what he actually does. Besides, every f*cking statement he makes has an expiration date on it.

All this massive shit to government control from private control and huge increases in onerous regulations will I hope wake up the voters to the fact their lives are being affected a lot more by the extreme Obama administration and far left liberal legislators than by the death of Michael Jackson. He's dead. Your life as you know it is soon to be dead unless you take steps to stop the changes. Call your senators - there is the last hope of stopping these changes.

Soon I'll be headed for Islamorada with my driver, John. I'm very much looking forward to the trip and I hope I'm not in a funk because of Obama's extremism. I want to enjoy the trip so I'm hoping Congress will be gone for the Summer which by the way I think they will be gone. This will be a time to enjoy the ocean, snorkeling, scuba, fishing, and yes, pool duty. I'm looking forward to my annual sea food diet while in Islamorada - I don't eat much sea food here in Vero because I don't cook it or go out that often to eat it. Lazy Days, Uncles, and Bentleys will see me again this year.

Friday I have someone coming over to look at my Tanzanite and to show me a ring she's purchased on a TV auction with a 30 day return policy - she wants to know just how good the Tanzanite in the ring really is. The TV auction person said it was an AAAA Tanzanite - the official Tanzanite rating scale does not go above AAA. This suggests to me that the auction company either doesn't know about Tanzanite rating or it is a big sales gimmick - I suspect the later. I'll be able to look at it and of course I can tell - I also have real top graded Tanzanite with which to compare. I might be surprised at the quality - it might actually be high but at the moment I'm suspicious.

We've had rain, rain, and more rain this week. It was very humid when I went for coffee this morning under partly cloudy skies. The rain is needed so that's good. The humidity sucks. No beach duty for me in about a week now.

Posted at 09:17 am in General | Comments (0)

MJ Still Deceased

Tue 30 June 2009

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.

Posted at 09:10 am in General | Comments (0)

John Resurfaced

Mon 29 June 2009

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!

Posted at 12:54 pm in General | Comments (1)

Headache Day

Sun 28 June 2009

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.

Posted at 11:38 am in General | Comments (0)

Jackson Marathon

Sat 27 June 2009

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.

Posted at 06:45 am in General | Comments (0)


Fri 26 June 2009

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?

Posted at 05:57 am in General | Comments (2)


Thu 25 June 2009

My God is it hot here in the Florida sun when you have close on and you're working outside, particularly on a roof. Yesterday I went to my Uncle Harold's home to install his weather station - job completed and the station is functioning properly. The thing is I need ed to get up on his roof to mount the wind speed/direction sensor and the rain sensor. I was not out in the direct sun working for long but in a matter of 30 or 40 minutes my clothes were wet. It's not that I'm out of shape although I admit I am, it was the heat with no breeze. At least there is a pool and often a breeze in the Keys and you don't need to be fully dressed. How labors work out side here in Florida in the Summer is amazing.

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.

Posted at 05:53 am in General | Comments (0)

2010 E-class

Wed 24 June 2009

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.

Posted at 06:42 am in General | Comments (0)

Another Hot Day

Tue 23 June 2009

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?

Posted at 10:16 am in General | Comments (0)


Mon 22 June 2009

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.

Posted at 12:33 pm in General | Comments (0)

Happy Father's Day

Sun 21 June 2009

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?

Posted at 08:09 am in General | Comments (0)

John at FSU

Sat 20 June 2009

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.

Posted at 08:12 am in General | Comments (0)


Fri 19 June 2009

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?!!

Posted at 07:13 am in General | Comments (2)

What I Believe

Thu 18 June 2009

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.


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.

Download text

Posted at 07:07 am in General | Comments (2)

No Shuttle Launch

Wed 17 June 2009

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!

Posted at 06:29 am in General | Comments (0)

Download Problems

Tue 16 June 2009

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 seem minor for someone with no coding experience could turn out to be major.

Posted at 07:07 am in Computer, General | Comments (0)

Confused Monday

Mon 15 June 2009

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.

Posted at 10:25 am in General | Comments (0)

Tired Saturday

Sun 14 June 2009

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.

Posted at 08:36 am in General | Comments (0)

Water is Cold

Sat 13 June 2009

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?

Posted at 08:09 am in General | Comments (0)

John's Challenge

Wed 10 June 2009

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?

Posted at 06:49 am in General | Comments (0)

Active Monday

Tue 09 June 2009

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.

Posted at 07:07 am in General | Comments (0)

New Website Projects

Mon 08 June 2009

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.

Posted at 08:45 am in General | Comments (0)

Something's Rotten in DC

Sat 06 June 2009

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.

Posted at 07:13 am in General | Comments (0)

Klatch Issue

Fri 05 June 2009

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.

Posted at 05:05 am in General | Comments (0)

Update My Will

Wed 03 June 2009

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.

Posted at 06:12 am in General | Comments (4)

Thinking About the Palms

Tue 02 June 2009

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!

Posted at 05:41 am in General | Comments (0)

High School Graduation

Sun 31 May 2009

Didn't do much yesterday - in fact I didn't leave the house except to walk to the post office. On Saturdays I like getting up later than the usual 5AM during the week and for some reason I'm actually able to stay in bed. At about 7AM I picked up a movie called "Heist' and didn't get up for breakfast until the movie was over. Breakfast was buttermilk pancakes with fresh strawberries on top - remember my mentioning the fresh fruit I picked up this past week?

Call me crazy but I do house cleaning on Saturdays although my house cleaning service will be here on Monday. Knowing they are coming in two days why do I clean? It's that obsession I have to keep things clean and orderly I guess and with Sally Cat roaming my house depositing hair everywhere there is always cleaning to be done.

I did go out to my storeroom yesterday and as I was walking back into my house the older guy living to the West of my house caught me and wanted to talk. This guy - Dean - is ok but I hate to listen to him because he's so depressing. He tells me about all his aches and pains, how sick his wife is, and how angry he is with the world. Nothing is good in his world..nothing. He talks and talks and talks all about himself or other things for which I have no interest. I'd rather be in front of my TV, at least I can turn it off! Oh, and another thing, he won't let me say anything with interrupting me before I'm through with my statement. Oh well.

It was graduation day in Vero - John's brother, Alex, and my cousin's son, Tucker, both graduated from Vero Beach High School. Both plan on interring the Indian Rive State College in the Fall, complete their two year associate's degree, then finish a 4 year degree at a bigger college like John is doing although the college now offers a 4 year's bachelor's degree. With economics tight for everyone, going to the local college for the first two years makes all the sense in the world. As many of you will remember, the first two years of college is about the same no matter what major you choose. Of course the first two years of an engineering school is different that a liberal arts school so it would be difficult to transfer to an engineering & science school from a liberal arts school - the reverse would not be true. I hope these two guys do well.

They will be in for a rude awaking when they get to college because kids in college want to be there and the professors do not "dumb-down" the course to the lowest common denominator as teachers do in high school. You see you have to attend high school until you are 16 but you don't have to attend college at all. High school teachers just want their students to pass for the most part without respect to proper preparation for life after high school. Too bad - it was not that way when I went to high school then the teachers actually cared.

Take Jason for example. I like the kid but he doesn't have a high school diploma because he dropped out. He doesn't have a driver's license and he's a felon at 23 (or 24). When it comes to employment, he's at the bottom of the totem pole compared to kids with a high school degree, a driver's license, and no criminal record. I hope for the best for him but as you can see, where you are in life is guided by the choices you made along the way - Jason made very poor choices. Remember boys and girls, where you are 5, 10, or 20 years from now will depend on the choices you make today! Damn I'm wise, huh?

Posted at 08:02 am in General | Comments (2)

Hacker Lad

Sat 30 May 2009

As advertised, Ace came over to take care of a few projects for me but needs to come back with some clear silicon and a paint brush. What he did only took about 30 minutes including hanging a Rayburn and a utility strip to hold things in my storeroom. BTW, how come my storeroom is full in less than a year?

Do you folks remember when BillsView.com was hacked into about 3 years ago? Do you remember I tracked done the teenager in the UK that did the hacking? Well he has send he's sorry he did it but I do understand that teenagers engage in this sort of mischievous behavior. I did have to rebuild my site but other than that, no damage was done. I learned I need to back-up all my files offline (I do this quarterly) and improve the security of my site. I also learned a bit about hacking because I wanted to know how he got access in the first place.

Recently he asked me to look at his site, WayneShears.com. I like the clean and structured look of his site and the WordPress template he's using is good - it has a lot of plug-in options and is one of the standards in the Blog world. What I found I found amazing is a video of an extraordinary gymnast, Damien Walters. This guy reminds me of the skilled cyclist, Andy MacAskill. Anyway, here is a link to Wayne's page where you can find the video - click here.

Well I'm done with building websites for now until the next person wanting a website come along. Ray did mention he and his wife know of a lady that wants a website pertaining to here elder-care business. That's all I know for now - of course I'd be happy to do it. Knowing that Ray is pleased with his site I suspect he'll give me a good referral. It would also be nice if I get the go-ahead to complete the sites I built for my paint contractor and landscape contractor - I got the sites about 95% completed just awaiting some final text or image details from them. Oh, well.

Another typical rainy day yesterday - I guess we are in that pattern for now. Of course Monday is the beginning of hurricane season but I'm ready. I guess I should really hook up my generator to the house in order to confirm all the connections work properly - maybe I'll do that latter this morning. I know the generator works I just don't know if the connection to my circuit panel works properly. Let's hope there aren't any hurricanes between July 15th and the beginning of August. I remember we were ordered to evacuate the Keys a few years back because of a pending hit by a hurricane.

Starr came over for a visit while her house was overtaken by the boys playing music......loud! John and his buddies jam about 3 times a week with their guitars, drums, etc. Anyway, Starr told me that Piper Aircraft was going to lay off another 200 after already laying off 500 last Fall. They're making the new PiperJet and this plant but thanks to Obama, no one is ordering private jets anymore - they don't want to be ridiculed by Obama. The hotels in Las Vegas have laid off huge amounts of their work force because Obama was critical of companies and citizens going to Vegas for meetings, conventions, and fun. Under the Obama administration you are not allowed to have fun! I really loath Bama's principles and practices! Our country is being wrecked by Obama without chance of recovery.

Posted at 08:16 am in Computer, General | Comments (0)

OMG....Lost Internet

Fri 29 May 2009

When I got up at 5:30 AM yesterday morning to post on BillsView.com, I discovered I did not access to the internet. So I went through the routine of re-booting my modem and router but that did not work. The next thing to do was call Comcast - a recording said there were outages in my neighborhood. The outages lasted until 11:30 at which time I was back online. So if you missed your morning review of BillsView.com, that's why.

Every afternoon this week we've had thunderstorms, wind, and rain. I think the area has received over 8" in the past week. Earlier I was saying we needed rain but now there seems to be no end. What I've noticed as I drive around is that brown dead-looking lawns have turned green once again. No beach duty yesterday nor will I go today.

Rumor has it that Ace will be here this morning to work on those projects I've accumulated unless of course he has an emergency. In the past 8 days there has been one event after another to keep him from coming over. I'm hoping today will be the day.

It's that time of the year again - the time when a variety of fresh fruit can be found in the markets around Vero. Yesterday I bought strawberries, blueberries, and my favorite...peaches. The blueberries are large and sweet. The strawberries have amazing flavor. I'll have to wait until the peaches ripen before I can report on them. I love fresh fruit so I'll enjoy the next few months when good fruit is available.

Yesterday I think I completed onesuperjuice.com - at this point I'm not working on any additional pages. I'll ask for payment in a week or two but for now I just want things to settle down. Ray continues to be pleased which of course makes me pleased and I'll get paid for my work. He's already given me $500 as a partial payment - I think he'll owe me at least another $500 when everything is said and done.

I'm getting fed up to here with all the dame advertisements by law firms seeking plaintiffs with Mesothelioma. This must be a big buck law suite opportunity because several different law firms want your business. They have the right to advertise like anyone else but I'm seeing 2 to 4 ads each hour no matter what channel I'm watching. In fact, I've noticed an abundant amount of advertisements for legal services, many more that I ever saw in Atlanta. Florida must be a plaintiff-friendly State in which to sue somebody.

Yesterday I picked up a new prescription for the bran name version of Adderall. I think the generic version doesn't work as well for me as the name brand. Today will be the first day on the new prescription so I'll report back in about a week. I did search Google for anything I could find comparing the brand name to the generic and without exception other folks using the medication reported the generic as being inferior. I understand these reports are random but even then you would think someone reports a positive result but I couldn't find even one.

My lawn and landscaping is looking pretty good now after the rain and fertilizer that was put on my lawn 3 weeks ago. James keeps it cut and well manicured IMO. I allowed him to put a sign out on my lawn advertising his lawn care business. I want to help him out but I also understand he'll go the extra mile to make my place look good if his name is on the sign. You can click on the image for a larger image.

Posted at 05:15 am in General | Comments (0)

Breaking Bad

Thu 28 May 2009

Do any of you watch the AMC series, "Breaking Bad"? John got me hooked on it so I've be following it from the get-go. This is a drama, not a funny show like Burn Notice, Monk, or House - it does get intense from time to time. It comes on at 10:00PM Sunday night which is a horrible time for me but the good news is it is available on Comcast OnDemand. This next week's show will be the last for this "season" although I can never tell anymore what makes up a season. Oh...and much to my disappointment, this Summer's season of Monk will be the last season - what's up with that? The program is wildly successful, has high ratings, but the USA network is canceling the series? What brain trust made that decision I wonder?

Coming next week when June starts there will be a return of Burn Notice as well as a few new series. Has anyone but me noticed the good programs are on cable networks and not the broadcast networks? I could only get A&E, USA, and TNN with no other channels - except FOX News of course, and be totally happy. I can't tell you how rare it is for me to watch any broadcast channels. I don't like all those 30 minute sitcoms, the broadcast news, or any of the series but that's just me.

Yesterday morning I headed to the beach for my usual hour of perpetration for the Keys this Summer. It was beautiful but hot because there was not much in the way of a breeze. The beach was almost empty except for the skim-boarders at Conn beach. When I was a teenager way back in the dark ages, we used to ride a surf board from offshore to the shore. Now the teenagers ride their boards from the shore to offshore - no one 'surfs' anymore. The kids provide entertainment as they go through their antics. Today's picture was taken yesterday on the boardwalk - many of you will recognize this including my little Dutchie buddy. Click on it to see a bigger image.

One of the meds I'm taking is the generic version and it doesn't seem to work as well as the name brand. So yesterday I call my doctor to request a prescription for the name brand - I'm to pick it up after coffee this morning. This may be my imagination but as I've always said, perception in the eye's of the perceiver is reality to the perceiver. I'm going to give the real thing a test ride for a couple of weeks to see if I can tell the difference. It will take a couple weeks because some days are just better than others anyway and I don't want a small sampling to point my to any incorrect conclusion.

Yesterday afternoon around 4PM we had one heck of a thunderstorm. I heard a loud crack of lightning and poof...my power went out. I decided just to wait until it came back on but after 30 minutes I was beginning to wonder just when power would be restored. In Atlanta, if the power was off for 10 minutes then you could bet it be off for a couple hours or longer. I said to myself - self, this would be a good time to test my generator on the my house circuit. I got it out and for 10 minutes or longer I tried to start it but couldn't. I had the full lever on, the choke on, and the main switch on. No go. Then I remembered I always turn the fuel supply off at the tank as well as turning it off at the engine. I turned it on and the generator started immediately but by this time my house power was back on. So I just hooked a vacuum cleaner up to the generator to put a load on it then let it run for about 15 minutes. Next time I hope I remember the fuel is turned off in two places!

Posted at 10:50 am in General | Comments (0)

Amy's Redfish

Wed 27 May 2009

Yesterday Sally Cat managed to knock the framed picture of the wall behind Syp's old apartment where he had made graffiti art with an image of my face in the center...remember that one? She knocked onto the tile floor and I discovered glass does not bounce. I took it in yesterday to have new glass placed in the frame. That is my very favorite framed picture not only because the art work is terrific but it must have taken Syp hours to create it it. Funny thing is the cat came running into my bedroom to hide under the bed knowing she did something wrong. Here's a thumbnail image of Syp's work - you can click on it to see a larger image.

Georgia Tech Jeff and his manager, Amy, went to Happyville (aka Niceville) Florida over the past weekend to visit Jeff's parents. While there they went fishing in shallow water where Amy caught the 32" redfish as you can see in today's image. The unusual thing is she caught it with artificial bass bate - the green lure still stuck in the fish's mouth. Redfish are good to eat but I'm not sure what a big one like this would taste like. Jeff did not mention if they ate it or released it. That's one big redfish I want you to know - you can click on the image.

For his part, Jeff started the soon to be World Famous sport of Professional Catfish Fishing - I'm confident this new sport will take off. You see Jeff and his Mom competed to see who could catch the largest totally worthless catfish - Jeff won. What I did find interesting is they caught the catfish using artificial lures which I've never heard of before now. I did not know catfish will fit plastic but apparently they will. Catfish are bottom feeders so you wouldn't think a piece of plastic on the bottom would get them too excited but it seems that's wrong. Jeff did not send me a picture of his catch.

My website, TanzaniteAmerica.com has actually become popular and is on the first page some of search engines depending on the terms you use. Last week I think I mention the gal in Miami with 5000 carats of Tanzanite she wanted to sell - I think she was a fraud. Yesterday I was contacted by a guy in Tanzania that has a 110 carat pear shaped Tanzanite he wants to sell and I think he is legit. He sent me images of the stone...the damn thing is so big it looks like a quail egg! It is so big that if you did not want to make a piece of jewelry then you could use it for a paper weight. It is so big the Tanzanian Government asses property take on it. Of course this is gemstone is way out of my range - I could not buy it but if I did I don't know to whom I'd sell it. Perhaps a New York auction house? I forwarded the information along to Bangkok Mark.

Since I added CAPTCHA to my 'Comments' section I've not gotten any spam in comments. I think this is going to be a good thing because a build up in spam affects some of the software when it exceeds a certain volume. The first time this happened I went nuts trying to find out what was wrong with posting on my site. Thankfully the author of the basic code told me what I needed to do to remedy the problem and that was to delete all the spam. Now I don't think I'll get as much spam because it requires a human to post although I expect I'll still get some.

Posted at 04:37 am in General | Comments (0)

Nice Memorial Day

Tue 26 May 2009

As advertised , I brought good weather to Vero for Memorial Day - it was a cloudless, warm morning although the 'typical' afternoon thunder clouds moved in. Yesterday felt like a normal Summer day here. The mornings are usual clear but clouds build up as the sun heats the air. This pattern should continue for this week.

After coffee I went to Wally World to pick up a few items. Normally I create a list then when it gets big enough I go fetch the items. Things like cat litter, cat food, bottled water, etc are always available for a good bit less than what you find in Publix. When it comes to food shopping, I still prefer Publix by far.

Knowing that it might cloud up in the afternoon, I went to the beach in the morning. It was beautiful over there but damn it was hot without an ocean breeze to cool things down. The beach was full of sun worshipers much more than any other time this year. The ocean was so nice I almost went into the water but not just yet. There were a whole bevy of teenagers doing that surf-boarding thing which is entertaining for me to watch. I spent about a hour and 20 minutes there yesterday as my tolerance for the sun's rays has increased.

In the afternoon I discovered a "Intervention" marathon on the A&E network which of course I can identify with some of the people in the series. If you've not watched this program and you live in the U.S., I'd suggest you watch it once to see just how bad things get for some people. There was this gal that was drinking bottle after bottle of mouthwash for the alcohol content of about 20% to 24%...that's at least 4 times the alcohol found in beer and 2 or 3 times what you find in wine. What I don't get is if you have the resources, why not go for the real thing? I don't get it.

My cousin Alice told me about a fruit stand up in Wabasso that has some fresh peaches from Georgia. I love peaches. After coffee this morning I think I'll ride up there to get some. Trouble is, peaches do not last like bananas do not last so I can't buy too many. Alice tells me this year's crop is exceptionally good. I can't stand it, I gots [sic] to have some - report to follow.

Once again, I think there is a chance Ace will be here this morning, but I'm not sure. I've not heard from him which is a bit unusual - when he's not coming he usually calls or sends an e-mail. When I called him on Sunday, I got his voice mail and he's not called me back. Perhaps something is going on which I don't know about? The only thing with him saying he's going to be here is that I come back from coffee and wait for him when it's my practice to complete my running around early in the morning. Like should I go get peaches after coffee or come back here to wait and see if he can come? Oh, well...I'll get it sorted.

Today's picture is what the beach looked like yesterday although this picture was taken over a year ago. I just wanted you dudes and dudettes who are land-locked to know what the ocean looks like in case you've forgotten.

Posted at 05:06 am in General | Comments (0)

John - FSU

Mon 25 May 2009

John came by Saturday night for a nice visit and to bring me a couple quarts of to-die-for ice cream from that ice cream shop across the street from Conn beach. Have I ever mentioned how much I love ice cream? I did not have any on the spot but I sure as heck plan to get into it tonight - I think I'll have to sample a little of both flavors to confirm it is as good as I remember. Patrick Henry once said "give me liberty, or give me death" - perhaps it is 'Give me ice cream & chocolate, or give me death'. Without ice cream & chocolate what is the meaning of life in the first place?

Anyway, John and I talked about FSU in the Fall and the issue of that one class he needs to get an AA degree from Indian River Stat College. John believes that he can go to FSU while at the same time take that one class at a community college close to FSU. This may or may not be correct so now, not later, is the time to confront the issue so as to give extra time for a resolution if needed. I told John he should get into his land-yacht, drive to Tallahassee, then meet with the folks in the admissions office. You can get more done sitting across the table from someone then talking to an assistant to the administrative assistant to someone who has authority with respect to admissions. I hope he takes my sage advice and takes a trip to FSU in the next week or two. Better to find out now rather than relying on what others may have said but have no authority to act.

Another thing we talked about is the trip to Islamorada in July - he is really looking forward to it like many of you are. Since John was her I got an e-mail from Donna about my lease for the first time since I requested one a couple, three months ago. While I still don't have the lease at least it has moved to the front burner. She asked me about the dates and what I was going to pay based on our earlier discussions - I'm hoping she will not want more money but if she does, I won't have a problem with that. I even told her I'd pay her full commission for a month's rent although I'm leasing for a shorter period. Stay tuned.

When John was here he asked if I wanted to go to a celebration with him this afternoon - one of his cousins just graduated from medical school and is having a party. I'd like to go if that works out so I can see some of John's aunts and uncles I've not seen in 40 years. I'm sure they'll remember me ...how could anyone forget the joy of being in my presence even after 40 years. I'm not sure I'll recognize some of them because they were young kids the last time I say them. It should be interesting if it comes off.

Once again we had an overcast day yesterday but no more rain. Maybe I'll part the clouds today to let the sunshine of my spirit fall onto those around me. The good news is the sunshine will benefit even those not around me which is just a bonus. I've not had beach duty in over a week.

Ace sent me an e-mail saying he would be here this morning. I'm not sure he remembered it is Memorial day or if that matters to him - I guess I'll find out after coffee this morning. These things I want done are not urgent but I do want them completed sometime soon.

Posted at 05:46 am in General | Comments (0)

Carport Creature

Sun 24 May 2009

Yesterday was a lazy day for me and I was sleepy-tired most of the day. For some reason I stayed up past 11PM on Friday night then got up at my usual 5:30 - 6:00 on Saturday morning. I laid in bed but of course could not go back to sleep - once I awake in the morning it is almost impossible for me to sleep again. Then I decided not to take an Adderall for the day to see how I felt compared to the last couple of days. There is a clear difference as you would expect in fact I'm thinking even a higher dosage of Adderall XR might be what works best for me. I'll give it more time just to see how things go but I may test the theory myself.

It rained yesterday morning but not in the afternoon - it remained cloudy all day. Because it was cloudy it was not as hot as it had been so when Jason came over asking if I needed anything done I put him to work. He spent over three hours cleaning out dead debris from in and around my plants as well as pruning dead parts off my various plants. He did a really good job resulting in a 'cleaned up' look I like. He also got on the North side of my house to pull some vines off plants and growing up the side of my house. This was a good project and one I've been thinking about for weeks.

The last time in rained a lot I got an infestation of bull ants all over my tile floors and this time was no different. I must have sucked 25 or 30 ants into my duster buster. If they decide to sting you, it can really hurt so I avoid them hence the dust buster. They only get into my house after a lot of rain which suggests their nest is flooded. Not a big deal, just a nuisance.

It's too early to tell what today will be like but I'm hoping for sunshine. If the sun is out later I'll go to the beach for awhile before folks get home from church. Then again, I bet the young folks on the beach do not even go to church although they often sleep in on Sunday mornings. All the rain has cause dead-looking lawns to green up and plants to perk up - rain is like viagra for plants.

I watched a good movie yesterday Robert De Niro, Ed Norton, and Marlin Brando although I can't remember the name of the move. It was about a heist in Canada where Norton tried to pull one over on De Niro but it ended up being just the opposite. It was thrilling enough to watch and much better than depressing news. I'm going to find a movie today or maybe even two.

Posted at 07:26 am in General | Comments (0)

Holiday Weekend

Sat 23 May 2009

It's Memorial Day weekend with lots of things going on here in Vero - parades, cook-outs, beach parties, etc. My hope is that the weather this weekend improves over the past few days although we did need the rain. Yesterday I headed to the beach after doing some things around here only to be driven away by rain after about 35 minutes and I mean heavy rain.The thing about yesterday's rain compared to the other days is there was a lot of wind blowing. I could set out my back door into my carport and get wet from the rain blowing in from the front of the carport - those of you who've been here now that would require a good blow.

I've not got any great plans for the weekend but if the weather is good later today I'll go back to the beach for awhile. There should be some good stuff on TV over the weekend like marathons of programs I like or new movie releases on HBO or Starz. I understand Ty is flying to Atlanta to join his brothers in terrorizing Dumpwoody [sic] - it seems to me someone might have mentioned a concert as well. Be safe guys so you can come down to the Keys this Summer and buy me a seafood dinner or two or three.

Remember the session I had with Gloria Gibbons trying to get her Outlook to talk to the AT&T mail servers? As I suspected, she had an incorrect password so I'll get with her again to change the settings in Outlook. That's the problem you run into when you let someone else set your password. It was the same password she was using with Bell South except AT&T requires both numbers and letters and her old password was just letters so her husband added a '1' at the end. Hopefully this will be the key to solving her connection problem.

According to John's mother, some interesting things are happening to him with respect to his job opportunities and school at FSU in the Fall. I'm not clear on the details so before I say anything else I want to get it from the horse's mouth . Rest assured nothing bad is going on to keep John from being in the Keys this Summer. It's my understanding that everything is not flowing quite as smoothly as planed but all of it can be remedied. I'm confident he'll get everything sorted.

Direct TV called to offer 3 free months of Cinemax so I can try the new Cinemax channel offering a new movie every night and a recently released movie every Saturday night. Why not try it I thought after all, the news is nauseating with the take over of the US economy and the reduction in individual freedoms by Obama and his gang of goons. So tonight I'll see what's on at 8 - the new TV guide for this service is not available online yet. Actually I've been finding a movie to watch every now and then so this might be a good service, we shall see.

Ace was having truck problems yesterday so he did not come over. He said he'll be here Monday at 9 but once he remembers it is Memorial Day he might want to wait until Tuesday which of course will be fine with me.I hat to say it by Ace seems to attract bad luck - his trailer was stolen, he damaged his hand with a saw, and now his truck is giving him fits. Some people seem to never run into an obstacle but Ace surely is not one of them.

Did you notice the little home icon I put at the top of the page? I've discovered on some Google searches just a daily post found in the iframe will be returned and not my home page with the I-frame and navigation. So I wanted to add a link to get to BillsView.com. What do you think about the location and size of the GIF image?

In sixty days from now I hope to have the opportunity to take another picture like the one I posted today.

Posted at 05:40 am in General | Comments (0)

Verification for Comments

Fri 22 May 2009

Yesterday I spent most all of the day working on BillsView.com and TanzaniteAmerica.com. If you visited my sight you would have seen "*Comments have been temporary disabled* at the top of the page - I disabled my comments function. I talked about the nefarious links being posted in my comments by bots I believe, not humans. The way to get around that is to put in a validation code known as CAPTCHA. This was no easy task because the code that renders BillsView and provides it's functionality is full of folders, sub-folders, and files. Where to add the code for the verification was not at all a simple task - in fact I decided after many failed attempts to check with the guy -NT -who wrote the code in the first place.

Much to my pleasant surprise, the guy who wrote the code added a CAPTCHA plug-in to his Blog system. So I downloaded and installed the plug-in following his instructions but of course created an error right off the bat. Without going into a lot of trial & errors or too much detail the ultimate error is I left a space between the beginning of my page and a .PHP include function! Who would have thunk [sic] it? From my experience I didn't think the code alignment was important and frankly in most cases it is not. Nonetheless I noodled it out and now have a verification function on my 'Comments' page ..cool, huh? There is absolutely no way I could have done this without NT's help - this guy is one heck of a skillful programmer.

As I do from time to time, I did searches on Google using terms that I hope would send seekers to my TanzaniteAmerica.com site. This is an on-going work in process which has yield my ranking on the first Google page with several search words or phrases. When I test a word and can't find my site I then edit my META tags and text with the hope I'll move up the ladder with those words. This process has taught me a good bit about SEO.

Gloria Gibbons came by with her computer - her e-mail client, Outlook 2007, would not retrieve her mail. After searching for solutions I tried several things non of which yielded a positive result. So I thought I'd use the online chat function with AT&T to see f I could resolve the issue. When trying to log on to AT&T the site told us her e-mail address was not recognized. When that happened we both agreed she needed to talk with her husband - an attorney in Miami - to make sure she knows her proper e-mail address and that he has not deleted her account somehow. You can't fix Outlook if you have an incorrect e-mail address or password.

Ace had to postpone coming over to my place until this morning - I expect him around 9. There are a half dozen minor tasks that need to be completed. I postponed working on Ray's site yesterday once I got all caught up in my CAPTCH project. Once I get started on a project I want to continue on the project until it is finish. I expect to work on onesuperjuice.com later this morning.

Posted at 06:12 am in General | Comments (2)

Comments Disabled

Thu 21 May 2009

The first thing I want to mention is that I've disabled your ability to make comments but hopefully only temporarily. There are 'bots' that use my comments function as a means of posting links to various sites. I took a random sampling of several of these sites and found they are fraudulent at the very least and possibly dangerous. I certainly would not want any of you good folks to stumble into something nefarious.

TB came by to update his emergency radio transmitter data into the NOAA website. It was easy to change the name of his boat, the size, and other such data. To no one's surprise Tommy continues to get ready for the trip to the Keys this Summer making sure everything is repaired, updated, and ready to go. Actually I think that's a good thing because safety is important and you can't help but feel safe with Tommy on his boat. I've observed in the past that if anything came up, he was prepared.

As advertised I met with Ray about his site, onesuperjuice.com yesterday morning. It was a short meeting who's main purpose was for me tom pick up a magazine in order to put parts of it on his website. He has a few articles and images he'd like posted so I'll have to scan the pages into my machine and then edit the pages via cut and paste with my photo editor. I've not started on it yet but probably will later today. I also edited a couple of pages including the home page where I added another paragraph as Ray wanted. He is very pleased with his website - that makes me happy.

This morning I expect Ace to arrive around 9 AM in order to take care of a few minor tasks for me. I waited until I had enough things to fix before I called him - no need to drive over here every time I have a 30 minute project. I've not seen Ace in months so it will be nice to catch up with him. I know he's recovered from that horrible hand injury but now business is slow for him like it is for a lot of folks.

Also this morning I think Gloria Gibbons will come over so as I can help her with her computer. It's not working properly and I bet I can make it where it doesn't work at all..what do you thin? She says she can't get on the internet anymore but she also told me the way she was getting on the internet was by tapping into an unsecured access point (aka router). Could it be that those folks turned their router off because they headed back North for the Summer? Or is there a problem with her network connection? I guess will find out in a few hours.

It didn't rain here yesterday but it was cloudy all of the afternoon so I did not go to the beach. Sometimes it is cloudy here but not cloudy over on the beach. To see what it looks like over there, I can go to www.verobeachcam.com just to see how things look. There is another site available too called Conn Beach Surf Cam - those of you familiar with Ocean Drive along Conn Beach you'll easily recognize the camera's view. Today's picture was taken from the camera yesterday afternoon - you can click on the image. If it is nice this afternoon, I think I'll head over.

So how are my meds working you ask? I can say without a doubt things are better than they were a month ago. Having said that, I'm not sure I've got the right dosages yet so I asked Dr. Director about increasing my Wellbutrin but he didn't want to do that at this time. I'm going to continue to test myself to see if the 20mg of Adderall XR is enough or perhaps I could go up one step - after all, the 20mg of XR is like taking 10 mg of the regular release twice a day except it is slower to get into my system. So for now I'm still checking and testing myself.

Posted at 06:07 am in General | Comments (0)