Thursday, October 30, 2014

Another Delivery / Pick-up Driver Does It Again

It seems that the complaints against delivery service companies like UPS, FedEx, DHL and the USPS are never ending. I don't quite understand what it is that makes a delivery man treat your package like it was a soccer ball, a piece of trash, a less than valuable piece of junk but they seem to do it way too frequently. The latest example is that of a UPS driver on Long Island, NY picking up a package that he shoves, rolls end over end and also kicks repeatedly as he apparently moves it from the business where he picked it up to his delivery truck. It may not seem like the worst a delivery driver could do, I sure have seen them treat boxes worse, but when you consider that this one was valued at $12,000.00 and was a sensitive pressure gauge you can understand that the shipper was not at all satisfied by the service he received. My guess would be that the shipper was pretty miffed; I'd also guess that a certain UPS driver will not be delivering packages for Santa Claus this year. (source)

Ever had anything like that happen to you. I have had some packages arrive in absolutely terrible condition and have even refused acceptance of one or two over the years. Usually though, mine come though in pretty good to excellent condition. In fact, my mailman and UPS delivery guys usually ring my bell when they deliver a package even if a signature is not required. Still though, these stories of delivery men gone berserk seem to be increasing and I can surely understand why the shipper in the above incident was less than pleased with the service his package got from that UPS driver.

There may be a remedy available to us online. There is a website that seems to be dedicated to helping shippers address such situations. The site documents cases of package abuse (for want of a better term) and also supplies links and information on how to file a claim against the major shipping companies out there. You can find that site at this link: http://dontthrowmypackage.com/.

All the best,
Glenn B
 

Wirecutter Takes A Photo

 
 
All the best,
GB

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

HDX Shelves - Product Review

If you need to store stuff, from food to toiletries to boxes of family memorabilia to auto cleaning supplies to gun parts or ammo to whatever, a space saving way to cache it away is to store it on shelving. I have a set of shelves in the back of my basement made out of 2x4s, plywood, nails and with some peg board thrown on at one end; the wood is coated with spar varnish. Like the workbench I also made, the shelving unit is sturdy, solid, strong as all heck because I made it that way. I recently had the need for another set of shelves but decided against building another one like that. The thing is, while I would not mind building another, the unit is not at all portable. It is going to stay where it is until someone rips it apart to move it in pieces. For all the time, effort and money I put into it, there are satisfactory alternatives out there that would do job I need done and that are portable and easy to both put together and to take apart if not as quite as strong and durable as the one I built.

One of those shelving units can be found at Home Depot. It's the HDX Heavy Duty Storage Unit with 5 Shelves. The set I got is 36" wide x 18"deep x 72" high (that high if you put it together with all five shelves but you don't have to use all five). I needed a shelving unit to help unclutter my basement so I stopped by Homer's the other day and picked up one of these.


I didn't do it in the blind either. We have at least six others of this same unit in our home today. Three of them are out in the shed, one in the garage and another two in our basement pantry. We have had them for at least five years now, probably a lot longer than that. That I just bought another one attests to the fact that I am satisfied with them for my purposes.

I use them to store whatever we store in the shed and garage that fits on the shelves and to store household junk and food in the pantry. They have stood up to having things thrown on them, fall on them, bang into them (as in bump not shoot) without incident for the most part (two cracked but were still useable). They are plastic though and these shelves are much more susceptible to being broken than something like a metal or wood set of shelves so you have to be somewhat careful with them. They do hold a lot though. According to the packaging, one unit can hold up to 750 pounds at 150 pounds distributed evenly on each of its five shelves. I don't know if any of mine have ever held that much weight, and I surely would not put 150 on either of the top two shelves, but I can say that I have had items weighing at least 75 pounds on some of the shelves and they have withstood that weight without noticeably warping, bending, cracking, breaking or collapsing for years now. 

The unit comes wrapped in plastic, all the shelves bunched together with the legs, feet and end caps in the bottom recess between two of the shelves. The instructions to put it together are on the back of the packaging. It is pretty much a snap, everything just fits in place and you should be able to get a set together in a few minutes or so. They do not come with any adjustable means to level them so you may need to put something under at least some of the feet of the unit if you need it leveled. I used two Schaeffer beer coasters under both of the front feet of mine to level it front to back. I did not bother leveling it side to side. Then I loaded it down with  junk our belongings that had been cluttering up the basement. Well, I should say with some of our stuff that been laying here and there in the basement because it sure did not fit all of it. I could have gone for the larger unit which has mostly the same dimensions but has a depth of 24" instead of 18 and it would have held a bit more. I figured though that I don't need a unit sticking that far out from the wall if only because I don't need to increase the odds that I may bang into it.

I'll probably be going out to get another one today, or maybe right after payday. I figure I will use the additional one as a stand for some of my critter tanks. By my estimation one shelf should fit three 10 gallon tanks across its width if the small end of the tank is facing out or one 20 gallon tank across it with the wide side facing out. I can use the bottom shelf for storing accessories, the next three shelves for tanks and the top shelf for other accessories. Note, I am talking about dry, all glass, reptile tanks and not aquariums. The weight of glass tanks holding water would most definitely collapse this shelving unit and it would pose a dangerous situation - do not use these units as aquarium stands. I am going to set that unit up in the finished part of my basement. Doing that will clear up a lot of space on the wood shelves in the back of my basement where I can store the rest of the clutter that remains and still have room left over for some other things.

In all the years I have used mine, I think only two shelves have ever broken and that was from banging something heavy and unforgiving into both of them pretty hard. As I said, these are plastic and plastic is on the fragile side. Still, I highly recommend them for similar purposes as those for which I have been using them. If you are in the market for fairly strong, fairly sturdy and fairly durable set of shelves at a reasonable price (I think the set was $39.99) and do not require the added strength of wood or steel shelving then consider these. Mine have served me well for years.

Oh, one other thing, they are made in the USA.

All the best,
Glenn B

Note: As usual, I was not solicited to give this review and was not compensated in any way by the manufacturer, retailer or anyone else for doing so.

I Wonder If She Hunted Down & Shot The Beasts...

...skinned em, tanned the pelts, and sewed them together to make the coat. If so, we need more folks like her in America because...


...that coat must be very warm, just look at what she is wearing under it. Thus it must be one excellently made coat and we could certainly use some quality manufacturing marked 'Made In The USA' to help boost our economy.

All the best,
GB

 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

A New Breakfast Favorite

I like bacon, in fact I love it. I have been known to eat over a pound (weight prior to cooking)of it at once with sides of eggs and toast slathered with butter. Yummy.

I also like other pork products for breakfast like smoked and fresh link sausages, quick browning frozen sausages and sausage patties. I've also been known to eat a steak or two for breakfast. I almost always have my breakfast meats with eggs and buttered toast and coffee - a heart attack waiting to happen. Of course if I eliminated just the toast (not necessarily the butter), it would be a healthy breakfast, at least as per the late Robert Atkins and his Atkins' Diet. I have, at times, lost weight when doing so - even when eating like a pig (or eating lots of pig or beef or lamb) so long as I cut out junk food and some other carbohydrates, like cutting back on beer and bread. I am on a similar diet right now and while I have not lost substantial weight yet,  I have ceased gaining (I had been gaining about 1-2 pound(s) per week for the past couple of months right before I started my diet. soon I will cut even more carbs and adjust portion sizes to just a little less (and I need to exercise probably at least twice a week, the only thing missing from my current diet as opposed to previous ones that worked before).

Along the lines of my current cutting back on the carbs diet, I tried a new breakfast combo today. I was trying to think of something that would be a change from the usual couple to three eggs and some toast, or oatmeal, and bacon and coffee. I came up with a new ingredient to combine with the old to make a tasty mouthful. While I was looking through the fridge, I realized no one had even touched the Kassler liverwurst I bought on Sunday even though the Hildeshcheimer and Goose liverwursts were almost completely decimated. So, I grabbed hold of it and was about to cut some pieces and throw them on slices of Bauernbrot when I thunk - whoa - slow down - do something really different. I decided to fry those slices of wurst in some butter, throw a couple of eggs in the same pan before the slices of Kassler liverwurst (contains bacon and slices nicely for the pan) were quite done, all while the bauernbrot was in the toaster. All I can tell you is that you need to try it yourself if you want to taste something truly worth risking a heart attack over. Now if only I had cut out the bread, it would have been heart healthy or so I believe. Anyway, the bread was the perfect accompaniment to the eggs which were likewise to the Kassler liverwurst. The coffee (hot, black and nasty) was the perfect thing to wash it all down. Then again, a good hefe Weiss might have tasted better with it but I am on a diet.

All the best,
GB


 

Election Day - Only A Weeek Away - Take Heed Before Then

Before you vote next Tuesday (November 4th) - and I imagine if you read this blog then you will be voting - make sure to read the fable below because there is a moral in it, one that Americans had better learn before it is I too late and too late may be the day of this election. Read, digest it, understand it and make sure to apply it to how you vote because we surely don't need to reelect any assholes like the guy in this older but not outdated tale.

While walking down the street one day a corrupt Senator was hit by an automobile and tragically died.

His soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance.

"Welcome to heaven," says St. Peter. "Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see a high official around these parts, you see, so we're not sure what to do with you." 

"No problem, just let me in," says the Senator.

"Well, I'd like to, but I have orders from the higher ups. What we'll do is have you spend one day in hell and one in heaven. Then you can choose where to spend eternity."

"Really?, I've made up my mind. I want to be in heaven," says the Senator.

"I'm sorry, but we have our rules."

And with that, St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell. 

The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of a green golf course. In the distance is a clubhouse and standing in front of it are all his friends and other politicians who had worked with him.

Everyone is very happy and in evening dress. They run to greet him, shake his hand, and reminisce about the good times they had while getting rich at the expense of the people. They played a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster, caviar and the finest champagne. 

Also present is the devil, who really is a very friendly guy who is having a good time dancing and telling jokes. 

They are all having such a good time that before the Senator realizes it, it is time to go. 

Everyone gives him a hearty farewell and waves while the elevator rises. The elevator goes up, up, up and the door reopens in heaven where St. Peter is waiting for him, "Now it's time to visit heaven... 

So, 24 hours passed with the Senator joining a group of contented souls moving from cloud to cloud, playing the harp and singing. They have a good time and, before he realizes it, the 24 hours have gone by and St. Peter returns. 

"Well, then, you've spent a day in hell and another in heaven. Now choose your eternity." 

The Senator reflects for a minute, then he answers: "Well, I would never have said it before, I mean heaven has been delightful, but I think I would be better off in hell." 

So St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell... 

Now the doors of the elevator open and he's in the middle of a barren land covered with waste and garbage. He sees all his friends, dressed in rags, picking up the trash and putting it in black bags as more trash falls from above. The devil comes over to him and puts his arm around his shoulders. 

"I don't understand," stammers the Senator. "Yesterday I was here and there was a golf course and clubhouse, and we ate lobster and caviar, drank champagne, and danced and had a great time. Now there's just a wasteland full of garbage and my friends look miserable. What happened?" 

The devil smiles at him and says,

"Yesterday we were campaigning, Today, you voted.." 

And therein, my friends, lies a lesson to be learned before you vote next Tuesday.

A hat tip and my thanks to Jim McK for that one.

All the best,
Glenn B
 

Whatever Happened To Amber Vinson - Part 2

Just 4 days ago, I wrote a blog post asking: Whatever Happened To Amber Vinson". The answer was that if nothing else, she - a nurse from Dallas and the second victim to contract Ebola here in the USA - was almost entirely, but not quite completely, forgotten by the media. The media did manage to report that she was Ebola free after her struggle with that disease but only buried deep down in an article mainly about Nina Pham who was the first nurse diagnosed with it. One would have thought that the second nurse to be stricken with Ebola would have made the headlines as much as the first one did but alas that has not been the case, as I said. it seems she was almost forgotten by the media.

That changed a bit today when Amber Vinson was the headliner, well sort of. Actually, a small link to an article about her appeared under the headlined article which was about nurse rotten crotch Kaci Hockox - you know her - she is the one reportedly threatening to sue if she was not released from mandatory quarantine in NJ and now that se is out she is going to Maine (maybe so if she has Ebola she can share it with more of us, who knows). Well, back to Amber Vinson lest I really start ranting about what I opine are the lack of ethics on the part of that bitch other nurse.

Amber Vinson, as reported in this article today, is to be released from the hospital today. Wait a minute, let me correct that a bit. It suppose it was Amber Vinson who was reported as about to be released because all the article mentions is Vinson - it makes no mention of her first name. This should be big news just as it was when Nina Pham was released from the hospital. This should be great and happy news too. Above anything though, it should be Journalism 101 news and should be reported just as you would report about any other person. The reporter, the editor, the media outlet all should have assured that the who (as in who, what, when, where, why and how) should have been reported on correctly and respectfully. So why in Hades is the media apparently treating her as a second class citizen with apparent second rate articles in which they don't even bother to include her first name when naming her.

This woman deserves better than that. She deserves the thanks of America for having helped to combat this deadly disease within our borders and for following all the protocols that the CDC told her to follow. And she deserves our thanks, for in essence, taking a bullet for her country. With that in mind, allow me to express mine:

THANK YOU NURSE AMBER VINSON - YOU ARE AN OUTSTANDING AMERICAN.

All the best,
Glenn B

Sunday, October 26, 2014

This Photo Just Ruins My Idea Of The Old West

Since I was a young lad, I have been a fan of old western movies and shows. Then I saw this photo. Just look at it, it is absolutely outrageous.


I mean how can anyone retain a proper picture of the old west in their mind's eye when they see tire tracks all over the place in a shot like this!

All the best,
GB

Five Minutes Into The Walking Dead Tonight...

...and I was reminded why I like this show so much regardless of the plot inconsistencies & outright contradictions, the all to often predictable story line, and the outright apparent stupidity and ignorance of the writers about survival, tactical issues and firearms.

So, when Bob started laughing, looked up, and told the fuckers who were eating his leg that he had been bitten by the walkers, it was an absolute precious moment that made up for anything else lacking in the show.

All the best,
GB

Government Officials Have A Hard Time Calling Terrorism...

...for what it is when it happens but there is something else with which they have even more difficulty when it comes to calling it what it actually is and that is racism. No, of course I do not mean they have a hard time calling something racism if there is a white person accused of it, that is easy as pie for them to spout. They have a hard time calling it racism though if it is a person of color, especially a black person, who has committed an evident crime in which they were racially motivated against whites.

Take for example the recent case of the NYC police officers who were attacked by a hatchet wielding man in Jamaica, Queens this past week. The police commissioner has, without hesitation, called it terrorism and it probably was indeed terrorism yet it was evidently additionally motivated by racism (at least as to selection of the victims). Yet, for some reason that I cannot fathom (other than politics and racial arse kissing - would they do that) Commissioner Bratton and Mayor de Blasio have both failed to call it racism when the facts beg otherwise. You see, the father of the hatchet man reportedly has told the police that his son was racially motivated in that he wanted to kill white people for the injustices he believed they had committed against blacks (source). It does not get any plainer than that but authorities in New York are seemingly steadfastly refusing to label this as a crime involving or motivated by racism. What a crock of stinking hypocrisy.

All the best,
Glenn B

German Delights

Sorry guys but I am not talking Frauleins right now, not German bier or kirschwasser either. I guess though, it may be the next best thing - German food. I stopped by Forest Pork Store yesterday and picked up 3 of their liverwursts - one Hildesheimer, one goose liver and one Kassler liverwurst. Make sure to check out the link to their liverwurst page to see what is in each. I also grabbed a large jar of Bauer's mustard with horseradish, a loaf of Lithuanian bread (weighs about 2 pounds - heavy, chewy and very delicious) and eight bratwursts. My brother-in-law, the elder, dove me and his mom there. My mother-in-law also picked up a bagful of goodies - all coming to my house. I know she got some bread, some gelbwurst (veal bolgna) and some Leberkase (the German version of spam I suppose).

Yesterday, for lunch, I had a nice, if thin (think diet), liverwurst sandwich. Then, yesterday evening, we all enjoyed grilled Bratwurst with fried (sautéed) onions and some deli salads from FPS. In fact, I had one and a half bratwursts (would have had two but again - think diet). The only thing that would have made it very much better would have been if I had indulged in one of the hefe weiss biers my son and his pal were drinking (again - think diet).

I have got to say, even without the bier, the food was absolutely excellent. I have been shopping at Forest Pork store probably for 45 years or more now. Used to go there regularly when I lived in Glendale and they were close by, currently shop there now and again since they moved to Huntington. They are about 15 miles from my house now, so not really all that far although in NY that can sometimes be a 30-45 minute drive. I have to admit, even though it is somewhat of a pain getting there and back - the food makes it worthwhile. While it ain't cheap, it sure is worth the trip so, I think I will be visiting a little more frequently than in the past few years. 

All the best,
Glenn B

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Camel Toe - Beware Of This One...

...cause once you see it you may think twice before ever looking at another photograph of camel toe on anyone's blog ever again! This is scary, maybe even traumatic to behold!









Remember, I warned you and I am even being nice enough to give you a chance to avoid seeing it by making you scroll down to it. So if you don't want to wind up needing bleach to cleanse your eyes, stop here.








Here it is - no not the camel toe pandemonico - but your second chance to avoid it. Yes of course, that means you'll have to scroll even a bit more to see it if you dare. Tempting - isn't it. Just remember, you have been warned, it is horrendous beyond belief.







Okay, I guess if you want it, what can I do but give it to you. Well, only after a third and final warning. Pass this one by and it's strike three for you - you lose and I have won the temptation game by getting you to look at it. I guarantee the sight of it will be burned forever into a dark place in your mind's eye!








Hope you didn't expect me to show you her face after my spiel about that camel toe.
Believe me you are better off not having to see it after what you have already seen.

Dear lord, I hate myself for having done that to you but I did warn you!

Hope you can live with that and knowing it will last forever and a day as one of your most vivid, if not fondest, of memories.

A hat tip to Herr M for that one.

All the best,
Glenn B

I Wish I Had This Kid's Hunting Prowess



















Not only was this young man, Gavin Dingman of Oceola Township, Michigan, able to bring down an all white deer with a single bolt from his crossbow but it was a ten pointer at that. It wasn't like the deer was a yearling an unwise to the ways of the world. That particular deer had to have been more wary than others of its species to have made it to its age (at least 3-4 years old by my guess) because it had the great disadvantage of being an albino (or leucistic) trying to survive in nature. That it did survive as long as it did means it was one wary deer. In other words, the hunters, the 11 year old boy and his dad, were one smart team of hunters to get close enough to have bagged him with a crossbow! I tip my hat to them - to the dad for teaching his son well and to the boy for making sure he had a good shot and bringing home the venison.

As for all of the controversy (yes the animal rights kooks are up in arms because they say he shot a pretty deer) over him shooting a white deer, some people are quite simply simple minded buffoons with little better to do that whine and moan, gnash their teeth and make death threats over things that are of so little importance as to be ludicrous. A deer is a deer and that is meat on the table no matter what the color.  This one will also make a nice trophy at that. More here at the source.

Congratulations young man - you did well.

All the best,
Glenn B

Friday, October 24, 2014

Whatever Happened To Amber Vinson

Amber Vinson - you remember her don't you. Just weeks ago, she was diagnosed with Ebola. She was the second nurse to treat Thomas Duncan who came down with Ebola. Nina Pham seems to have been getting all the headlines, or at least most of them, in stories about both of them. Tonight I just read excellent news about  good news that should have made it into the headlines about Amber Vinson. She has been declared Ebola free - she has beaten it. That story is hidden in a headliner story about Pham when it should have headlines all of its own!. Go figure. More here.

All the best,
GB

Questions To Ask About The Attack On Cops In NYC

http://video.foxnews.com/v/3856568790001

The reporter asked the ex-cop if the police officers who reportedly shot an innocent bystander did anything wrong and he says "No, absolutely...". He may be right and he may be wrong on that point. You need to ask some questions: Are the police suddenly no longer responsible for each and every shot they fire? Was the threat perceived as being so great that it overrode the precaution not to fire with innocents in the line of the shots?

They are responsible for each and every shot they take and its not time to spray and pray when something like that happens but nonetheless it may have been time to shoot. If the imminent threat was so great to others (the officers and or the public) that it was necessary to fire immediately and the threat posed by police bullets was less than that posed by a guy armed with a hatchet, then they may have been justified even when innocents were in background of the line of fire. Regardless, I think you safely can bet that when the woman files a lawsuit she will win a substantial amount of compensation or the city will just make a settlement with her.

One other thing of note, listen to the part about the police officers all posing for photographs for which a supposed photographer had asked them to pose. Okay, they made a rookie mistake and stopped paying attention to their surroundings but maybe it was more than that. Maybe the photographer was in on the attack and set them up by diverting their attention. I am not alleging that was the case but bringing up the point that I have not heard one mention of that possibility from the police but I hope they are investigating it.

All the best,
Glenn B

I Can Predict Who Gets A TSA Pat Down

Really, I can and it's easy to do. Scroll down and you'll see what I mean:









keep scrolling...














just a bit more...














here you go:


 
 
It's going to be the guy with the grey hair and white t-shirt because that's the way TSA rolls.
 
All the best,
GB

 

Correction On Dr. Craig Spencer & Ebola In NYC

In my last bog post on the subject, I said that it had been reported that Dr. Craig Spencer reported himself with a fever of 103 degrees and that he subsequently tested positive ,for having Ebola, at New York City's Bellevue Hospital. It has now come to light that initial reports containing that information were incorrect. According to more recent news reports, he reported himself when his temperature was 100.3 and not 103. According to the NY Times:

"Health officials initially said that Dr. Spencer had a 103-degree fever when he reported his symptoms to authorities at around 11 a.m. on Thursday. But on Friday, health officials said that was incorrect and that Dr. Spencer reported having a 100.3-degree fever. They said the mistake was because of a transcription error." (source)

So it seems that Dr. Spencer followed current (hopefully adequate)protocols and that his fever did not suddenly blossom from nothing to almost nuclear in the wink of an eye. Hopefully that will mean that he as not able to infect others with Ebola in the days prior, to his self reporting and being put into quarantine, while he was free to roam one of the most populous cities on earth.

Let's keep him in our thoughts, well wishes and prayers and hope they have contained it in his case before any further spread of this dreaded disease.

All the best,
Glenn B

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Talking About Close To Home...

...how about close to work. This afternoon, at about 2PM, on Jamaica Avenue near 162nd Street (about 9 blocks from one of my work locations) a hatchet wielding man attacked and wounded two police officers, in a group of four of them all recent police academy graduates. One of the officers, hit in the back of his head, is undergoing surgery in critical condition. The other wounded officer sustained a wound to one of his arms. At least one, maybe both, of the uninjured officers opened fire, killing the suspect. During the shooting a woman passerby, about a block or so away, was also injured either by a stray shot or ricochet; she is reportedly out of surgery and recovering. More info here.

Surveillance video, probably from a local business, caught the assailant just as it appears he is winding up to swing the hatchet at one of the officers. Video link below:

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/video?autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=10766975

The hatchet wielding man has not yet been identified. I am almost willing to bet that Muhammad is somewhere in his name but that is only a guess so I am only almost willing to make that bet. Anyway, here is hoping that the officers make full and speedy recoveries and likewise for the woman who also was shot. As for the guy with the hatchet, it seems he got what he deserved.

All the best,
GB


Ebola May Be A Whole Lot Closer To Home...

...for me and mine, and many millions more New Yorkers, than anyone would have believed just a month ago. A doctor, identified by MSN as Craig Spencer, who did humanitarian work with Doctors Without Borders reportedly is currently undergoing quarantine and Ebola testing at Bellevue Hospital in New York City tonight. (source)

Oh shit, I just got done typing the above paragraph and went back to the article to get more info and the link and there was an important update. It is no longer suspected that he has it, he has tested positive for Ebola and definitely is infected with it. (source 1 and source 2)

Man oh man, that is way too close to home for me. I live within about 20 miles from that hospital. I must say this is an alarming development if for no other reason than NY City is a metropolis of at least 8 million people and if Ebola spreads there it may spread like wildfire. Mind you, such a spread might not only take place in the city but also across the world since NYC is a major national and international travel hub. Of course, NYC's Mayor DeBlasio is assuring folks that:

“Our understanding is that very few people were in direct contact with him,” (source)

The thing is though he reportedly came back to NY from Guinea, one of the hardest hit Ebola stricken nations, on October 14 and his been free to roam about the city or wherever else at will. It has been reported that:

"Even as the authorities worked to confirm that Mr. Spencer was infected with Ebola, it emerged that he traveled from Manhattan to Brooklyn on the subway on Wednesday night, when he went to a bowling alley and then took a taxi home.
 
"The next morning, he reported having a temperature of 103 degrees, raising questions about his health while he was out in public." (source)
 
Get that! This guy reportedly was traveling around NY City wherever he wanted to go and only after he had a fever of 103 degrees did he decide to report himself. I have to wonder, and maybe you do to, did his fever suddenly explode out of nowhere from a normal temperature of 98.6 to a high fever 103 OR did it develop, as it seemingly has in others with Ebola, from a lower temp over a day or two before it got that high and thus maybe put many others at risk as it was developing. One also must ask, should he have called himself in to authorities as possibly having Ebola a day or two before he actually did so! I can only hope the fever came on suddenly and that he was not contagious while on the subway or at the bowling alley or in the cab or wherever else he may have been over the last couple of days. (10/24/2014 - Edited To Make A Correction: According to the NY Times, it was incorrectly reported, at first, that Dr. Spencer alerted medical authorities after his fever had reached 103. It is now being reported that he alerted authorities when he had a fever of 100.3 not 103; there supposedly was a transcription error when the original information was given out.) (source)
 
As far as mayor de Blasio assuring folks that very few had direct contact with him, how about the guy who wore the same pair of rental bowling shoes or who stuck his fingers into the holes on the same bowling ball after Mr. Spencer? How about the people who sat in the same subway seat as him or those who ran their hands down the handrail of the stairway leading to his train. How about anyone who was in the same taxi he took home. It may be all well and good to say it is highly unlikely that they will catch it from him but try selling that to scared New Yorkers, let alone to the families of the over 4,000 poor souls who have succumbed to Ebola during the current outbreak.
 
One thing in New York's favor - hospitals in NY State claim to have been preparing for cases of Ebola for months now and Bellevue is reported to be one of eight that has been specially set up to handle Ebola cases. It has one of the best trauma units in New York City and hopefully one of the best infectious disease/quarantine units too. Regardless, this is way too close to home not to make me feel concerned for my family's safety at least a little bit.
 
Right now though, I will admit I am more worried for Dr. Spencer, those he came in contact with, and those who will come in contact with him by way of treating him at Bellevue. Him for obvious reasons, he has it and needs our best wishes, thoughts and prayers. Those treating him as they are much more likely to come down with the disease than anyone else after exposure to him and those with whom he came in contact because there is a chance they could get it.
 
Let's hope and pray that Dr. Spencer gets well without infecting even one other person.
 
All the best,
Glenn B
 
 
 
 

And They Say Men Use Guns As An Extension...

...of their lacking manhood. Does this mean she wants to be a man.


All the best,
GB

When You Wish Upon A Star...

...you had best hope you don't piss off whatever lives in the solar system where that star is located. That is unless you are hoping to get them pissed. Lately I find myself wishing that a full scale alien invasion (as in from Mars not Mexico) would take place so that we could get our minds off all of the bullshit that currently besieges us and so we actually would face something on a united front - I miss a UNITED States that much!

We can't seem to unite on any front now or so it seems. We stand divided on almost every issue such as man made climate change/global warming versus the natural course of events, gun control versus our right to keep and bear arms, unity versus diversity, true patriotism versus being a hyphenated-American, terrorism versus the war on terror, drug abuse versus the war on drugs, religion versus atheism, traditional marriage versus same gender unions, reporting the news versus using the media to push an agenda, politics such as left versus right or liberal versus conservative (and note there sometimes is a vast difference between those two sets), tyranny versus government by the People, education in schools versus an upbringing at home, justice versus injustice, police militarization and brutality versus police protecting and serving, supporting our troops versus calling them baby killers, being green versus destruction of the environment, taking responsibility versus blaming George W. Bush. No wonder that zombie movies and shows are so popular; people must secretly be wishing that they could start shooting 'the other guys' at will and that the other guys would be as easy to identify and as heinously vile as are the walking dead who, by the way, are good for nothing other than trying to take the life right out of you which is much the way we seem to see one another lately if we differ in opinion on anything. Yep, a full scale attack on earth by little green men, the Borg or Cylons might do the trick of getting us together on a unified front; well, at least for a month or three. Then I am almost certain that some large number of us would side with the aliens.

All the best,
Glenn B

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

I Enjoy An Updraft...

...every now and again if only for the fact that it does this:

 
 
I have to say though that while that shot of Marilyn is nice, I much prefer this one to Marilyn's:
 

I don't know, maybe it's that she's packing a pistol or that the dress is camo or maybe something else but this is much, much, much more to my fancy.

All the best,

A Calibration Error...

...or was it a rigged computer system illegally stealing votes from Republicans and giving those votes to Democrats? I find it hard to believe that this was merely an error, a computer glitch, since it happened repeatedly. What happened was that each vote cast for a Republican candidate was miraculously switched to a vote for the Democrat candidate.

I would think that a complete investigation into the possibility of voter fraud is warranted; after all, this happened in Illinois, the home of Chicago Politics (which translates, I think, to corrupt Democrats and corrupt politics). I am certain that if this had happened in reverse and that the votes had been switched from Democrat to Republican, the leftists would be up in arms and this event and the demands for an immediate investigation would be a major news story in the Mud Slinging Media instead of merely a blurb on Fox. More here.

All the best,
Glenn B

It's Getting Better For Officer Darren Wilson

PO Darren Wilson is the police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO back in August. As you are probably well aware, riots broke out based on claims and so called witness accounts that Brown was running from Wilson with his hands raised in the air in surrender when Wilson shot him. Well, in light of witness reports, even I was quite skeptical of Wilsons claims that he was justifiably defending himself but I would not condemn him until more facts came to light. Now it seems the condemnation he got from many may not have been justified. 

The official autopsy report has finally been released and the findings clearly do not support witness claims that Brown was running from Wilson nor that he had his hands up in the air. In fact, the autopsy results reportedly support PO Wilson's claims that Brown tried to wrest his service weapon from him (Brown had one shot through his hand) and that Brown was charging at him when he fired more shots at him, including the fatal shot. The autopsy clearly showed that Brown's hands could not have been up in the air with palms facing Wilson, as witnesses claimed, because of the angle of the wounds to his arm and because of the travel of the bullet that hit him in the arm. It further shows that the shot to Brown's head (the fatal shot) came as Brown was either falling toward or lunging at Officer Wilson and not while he was running away or from the rear or while he as on the ground. Of course, these results contradict the independent autopsy that the family had done to some extent; however, the results of yet a third autopsy - by the feds, have not yet been released. (source)

While Officer Wilson has not yet been exonerated of any wrong doing, one has to see that for him - it's getting better. Along those lines allow me to parody a 1967 song by The Beatles - Getting Better:

Getting Better
 
It's getting better all the time
 I defended myself in the hood (No I can't complain)
 Then the autopsy showed I did as I should (No I can't complain)
 He wasn’t running from there (Oh), his hands not in the air (Oh)
 Coming at me full steam I shot that fool (He wasn’t cool) 
 
 I've got to admit it's getting better (Better)
 A little better so please don’t riot and shout (It can't get worse)
 I have to admit it's getting better (Better)
 It's getting better since the facts came out 
 
 He was a law breaking angry young man
 He attacked viciously when I gave a command
 Violently at me came this turd, shots finally heard
 I'm doing the best that I can 

 
 I've got to admit it's getting better (Better)
 Please don’t riot and shout (It can't get worse)
 I have to admit it's getting better (Better)
 It's getting better since the facts came out
 Getting so much better all the time
 It's getting better all the time
 Better, better, better
 It's getting better all the time
 Better, better, better
 
 He was cruel to the convenience store man
 He strong armed him and stole his cigars
 Man he was mean but I forever changed his scene
 And I'm doing the best that I can (Ooh) 
 
 I admit it's getting better (Better)
 Please don’t riot and shout (It can't get more worse)
 Yes I admit it's getting better (Better)
 It's getting better since the facts came out
 Getting so much better all the time
 It's getting better all the time
 Better, better, better
 It's getting better all the time
 Better, better, better
 Getting so much better all the time
 
 
 
That  is all.
 
All the best,
Glenn B



Tuesday, October 21, 2014

What In Hell Were The Police Thinking...

...or were they simply not thinking at all and just reacting? In July 2014, police officers in Stockton, CA had a running gunning battle with three bank robbery suspects. The surviving suspect apparently fled with a woman he had taken hostage at the bank. Somehow, for some reason known only to the officers, they decided to keep pursuing the vehicle in close proximity, then got into a blazing firefight with its occupants firing at the vehicle over and over and over again with a hostage in it. In all, some 33 police officers fired at least 600 rounds that hit the car (just over 18 rounds each on average). The female hostage was killed and it reportedly has been determined that all of the ten shots that hit the woman had all been fired by police officers.

My source is this brief blog post and this video  (it came out last week) of the attorney who represents the victim's family:



Did you pay attention. The police reportedly had a helicopter following the vehicle, yet the officers reportedly broke protocol and, were in hot pursuit of the vehicle and somehow wound up in a final gun battle with the suspects while firing upon the vehicle with full knowledge that there was a hostage within the vehicle. What the fuck ever happened to backing off, letting the chopper do the following, and calling in the hostage negotiations team???? What in Hades ever happened to not firing if it endangered the lives of innocents.

In my mind, if these officers actually did that of which they have been accused, if they knew a hostage was in the vehicle, they should be facing manslaughter charges at the very least. Of course, there has got to be another side to this story, so I am not going to condemn anyone in my mind just quite yet. I sure would like to find out though, what is the other side and how they arrived at the conclusion that they needed to fire 600 shots into a vehicle containing a hostage whom they knew was there instead of doing something seemingly more reasonable and safer for the hostage!

I just did some looking, here is what I could find of the other side. The police reportedly wanted to call in hostage negotiators but did not have the chance (attributed to Stockton Police Chief Eric Jones) to call them in. One has to wonder if they did not get the chance because they continued the hot pursuit and possibly forced or caused a final shootout with the alleged bank robbing - kidnapping -  hostage taking  - dirtbags. The police reportedly also feared that the bad guys might take more hostages or take over a school (again attributed to Chief Jones). (Source)

As to additional hostages, the reported facts are that the suspects took a total of three hostages from the bank, two employees and a customer, one Misty Holt-Singh, the woman who was killed. The other two hostages were somehow ejected from the vehicle during the chase; either by being thrown out, falling out or jumping out, it was not determined in the linked article at the time it was written. Now don't go thinking that the police officers thought all three hostages had gotten out of the vehicle before the shootout. According to the same linked article above, this one, the police knew that the suspects were using one of the hostages as a human shield at the time of the final shootout! The real irony of that is that the surviving suspect was allegedly reported by the police as the one using Mrs. Holt-Sing as a human shield. They shot her dead but not the bad guy using her as his shield - there is something major wrong with that in my mind, something terribly unjust and unfair and very sad indeed.

So, the thing is the police reportedly admitted they knew there was a victim in the bad guys' car and that she was in fact used as a human shield. Why on earth would they get into a gun battle with the dirt bag scum if such was the case and if already engaged why would they continue to fire at least 10 bullets that struck the hostage instead of ceasing fire for her protection and taking cover or backing off? Remember the helicopter when you think about that. Why did they not back off and let the chopper follow it or the suspect if he was out of the car at that point. Why did they not avoid a violent confrontation in the first place in order to protect the hostage? How did it devolve to the police killing the hostage in a hail of their bullets?

Did her life mean that little to them? What would my life or yours or our kids' lives mean to them? I would like to get some answers, see some valid justification as to why it was allowed to evolve into a blazing gun battle with a hostage in the car, to see something that could justify it all because I don't want to believe the police were as fucking stupid and as outright callous and unconcerned about the life of a citizen as they seem to be accused of. If however, it turns out that they broke protocol, that they were reckless, that they needlessly caused a situation that likely could have been avoided by following tired and true methods in such cases, and that is what led to her being killed - manslaughter charges will be too good for them.

All the best,
Glenn B

Why I Prefer Backpage Over Craigslist

So why do I prefer Backpage over Craigslist? It is pretty easy to figure when you read the terms of service for both of these sites that offer the user a free forum through which to post classified advertisements. In answer to my question, I'll let them do the talking, so to speak.

Here is a list, verbatim, of items, services and content prohibited from Craigslist Note, according to them it is only a partial list of things they ban from posting on their site:

"Here is a partial list of goods, services, and content prohibited on craigslist:
  • any good, service, or content that violates the law or legal rights of others
  • false, misleading, deceptive, or fraudulent content; bait and switch; keyword spam
  • offensive, obscene, defamatory, threatening, or malicious postings or email
  • anyone’s personal, identifying, confidential or proprietary information
  • spam; miscategorized, overposted, cross-posted, or nonlocal content
  • postings or email the primary purpose of which is to drive traffic to a website
  • weapons; firearms/guns and components; BB/pellet, stun, and spear guns; etc
  • ammunition, clips, cartridges, reloading materials, gunpowder, fireworks, explosives
  • US military items not demilitarized in accord with Defense Department policy
  • child pornography; bestiality; offers or solicitation of illegal prostitution
  • pet sales (re-homing with small adoption fee ok), animal parts, stud service
  • food stamps, WIC vouchers, SNAP or WIC goods, governmental assistance
  • alcohol or tobacco; unpackaged or adulterated food or cosmetics
  • prescription drugs, medical devices; controlled substances and related items
  • recalled items; hazardous materials; body parts/fluids; unsanitized bedding/clothing
  • stolen property, property with serial number removed/altered, burglary tools, etc
  • ID cards, licenses, police insignia, government documents, birth certificates, etc
  • counterfeit, replica, or pirated items; tickets or gift cards that restrict transfer
  • lottery or raffle tickets, sweepstakes entries, slot machines, gambling items
  • postings or email offering, promoting, or linking to unsolicited products or services
  • affiliate marketing; network, or multi-level marketing; pyramid schemes"

You will note that I highlighted, in light purple and boldface, those that I might want to sell or want to buy with some regularity. Now, let's take a look at what Backpage has to say about those items that I highlighted, again, verbatim from their site. Also note that, unlike Craigslist where they listed prohibited items under a special section for them instead of in their terms of service, Backpage very openly shows the following in its terms of service as they do everything else in that is normally covered in a TOS.

"18. Posting any material advertising weapons the use, carrying, or advertising of which is prohibited by applicable federal, state, or local law. You are solely responsible for complying with any and all laws and/or regulations applicable to the transfer of firearms under both applicable local, state and federal laws. The transfer of firearms is heavily regulated and restricted, and failure to strictly comply with all such laws is a serious crime and may result in criminal prosecution. All transfers of firearms, whether by sale, lease or loan, including private transactions, must go through a licensed firearms dealer. Any exception to these laws, such as air guns, knives, accessories, certain antiques, and some gun parts that may not require transfer by a licensed dealer, should be first confirmed by you prior to purchase. It is your responsibility to comply with all such laws, including any and all city, county, state and Federal laws when accessing or using this site. It is also your responsibility to locate one or more licensed firearm dealers in your area and/or the area of any buyer or seller listing here who are able and willing to assist you with any such transfer. We do not offer any assistance with respect to locating a licensed dealer for your transaction or otherwise with respect to your transaction. By listing any firearm, you represent and warrant to us that you legally own and possess the item you wish to list here and have fully complied with and will continue to fully comply with all laws and regulations applicable to your listing, transfer and/or sale. By agreeing to purchase any firearm, you represent and warrant to us that you are of legal age, and are not otherwise prohibited by law from purchasing, transferring, owning, or possessing the firearm listed, and that you have fully complied with and will continue to fully comply with all laws and regulations applicable to your transfer or purchase; "

Wow, did they just in essence say that legal sales of firearms are permitted through their site and only sales of illegal ones are forbidden? Yes they did, ammo and other weapons are allowed too. They are not control freaks as they seem to be at Craigslist. You will note that Backpage terms do not even mention pets or animals and yes they have a section to advertise them for sale unlike Craigslist that would seek to control and ban you from even doing that. In other words, Craigslist it seems is, in sum and substance a liberal leftist type of sales site exercising maximum control and offering less service while Backpage is much more conservative in allowing its users much more of a free market. I use both of them to one extent or another but I much prefer the policies of Backpage, they are much more in keeping with the ideals of America (at least the one in which I grew up) than with the apparent control freaks who want to ban this and that while keeping a tight rein on the rest of us. Overall, I much prefer Backpage to Craigslist for their classifieds. Why more folks don't utilize Backpage is beyond me!

All the best,
Glenn B