May 31, 2009
May 30, 2009
This certainly comes as no surprise to those of us that are J-Land transplants and have witnessed the steady reduction in services available on the AOL platform.
To read more, go to Bucko Bucks :o)
May 28, 2009
If you receive WORK from your boss, any of your colleagues or anyone else via any means whatsoever - DO NOT TOUCH IT!!! This virus will wipe out your private life entirely.
If you should come into contact with WORK you should immediately leave the premises. Go to the nearest liquor store and purchase the antidote - Bothersome Employer Elimination Rebooter (BEER). Take the antidote repeatedly until WORK has been completely eliminated from your system.
You should immediately forward this medical alert to five friends. If you do not have five friends, you have already been infected and WORK is, sadly, controlling your life.
May 27, 2009
May 24, 2009
May 23, 2009
Saturday morning, we are heading to Springfield Missouri (Misery as I like to call it :o). We will chat and visit and such on Saturday evening, and then on Sunday the fun begins.
We will be loading all my Mom and Step dad's possessions into a rental truck, and on Monday, we head back to South Bend, IN. Beth and I will arrive Monday night, and Tuesday morning will head to their new apartment to start unloading. We expect my Mom and ex-brother-in-law to arrive around noon on Tuesday. We will get them situated on Tuesday, and start showing them the local venues on Thursday and Friday.
Keep your fingers and toes crossed, because they are forecasting chance of showers in Missouri on Sunday and South Bend on Tuesday, our loading and unloading days, respectively.
Please understand that reading and commenting will be severely limited for the next several days.
Hope you all have a wonderful holiday weekend, and thoughts and prayers to loved ones lost in service of our country. Happy Memorial Day :o)
May 22, 2009
May 20, 2009
May 19, 2009
May 18, 2009
This recently came to my attention again because the Nuclear Industry is using this video as a tool to focus on continuous improvement, changing times, and to reiterate that the "bar" is always moving, and what was "excellent" before becomes substandard as others move ahead. We showed it during our leadership communications meeting (all supervisors and above).
At the very end, it asks, what does it mean? I would be interested in your perspective.
May 17, 2009
May 14, 2009
I have noticed that the more you give, the more they ask for, regardless of the charitable organization. I am happy to do my part, but hiis is just over the top :o)
"The 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver are just nine months away (February 12-28) and I can't wait for you to join us in Canada!
The U.S. Olympic Committee's VIP donor program is designed to accommodate a variety of interests, contribution levels and time frames. You and your guests are provided with premiere accommodations, ground transportation and fantastic event tickets (we've selected ice hockey, skiing or snowboarding and figure skating to name a few). In addition, program participants access benefits available only to friends and family of the Olympic Movement, such as a tour of the USOC performance services area, receptions with guest athletes and USOC leadership, passes to the exclusive USA House and special apparel.
Come to the Games as part of our Olympic Friends and Family! Weekend getaways are priced at $50,000 per couple; four- and five-night stays are available at $150,000 for two persons and $300,000 for four. Package prices include a donation to the U.S. Olympic Committee to help us continue to serve America's Olympic and Paralympic athletes." [It better be a sizable contribution, WTF? :o)]
May 13, 2009
May 12, 2009
The Department of Energy (DOE) has instituted the "L Prize", a competition that challenges lighting designers to replace the commonly used 60W light bulb with the PAR 38 halogen lamp with ultra-efficient solid-state lighting products. A future L Prize program will call for development of a new 21st-century lamp that delivers more than 150 lumen's per watt.
So what does it all mean? The L Prize competition focuses on development and market adoption of a solid-state lighting replacement for the 60W lamp that uses only 10W - a savings of 83%. If every socket in the United States converted from 60W incandescent lamps to the 10W L Prize winner, the country would save 34 terawatt-hours of electricity per year; enough to power the lights of 17.4 million households (twice the consumption of Las Vegas). That also equates to 5.6 million tons of carbon emissions).
Do you use energy efficient lighting? If not, why not?
For a listing of current light bulb options and information, click here.
May 10, 2009
In all seriousness, this is a day where we stop to take the time to recognize and honor our mothers, who nurture and protect us, who give of themselves and then some, who love us no matter what we have or have not done. The best image in my mind is the one at the right. My philosophy has always been that this is part of every day, but one day is better than none at all.
So here is hoping that if you are a true Mother, that you have a glorious day. If you are a son or daughter, I hope you had the chance to tell your Mom how much she means to you, and most importantly, that you love her.
Happy Mothers Day!
May 5, 2009
But that was before construction jobs vanished. Hard times have brought them to a classroom to learn a different trade. Tonight's lesson: how to avoid death and dismemberment.
This is Wind Technology Boot Camp at a local Community College, where eight weeks of study and $1,000 in tuition might lead to a job repairing mammoth wind turbines.
The work requires smarts and stamina. It is potentially dangerous. Candidates need good knees, a cool head -- and a stomach for heights.
"I've seen guys just freeze halfway up the tower," said the instructor. For those who can hack it, starting pay ranges from $15 to $20 an hour. Crack technicians can make six figures a year. Wind farms are hiring and probably will be for years to come.
As in previous recessions, this economic downturn is boosting enrollment at community colleges and vocational schools. Classrooms are swelling with workers from hard-hit industries who are looking to change careers.
Educators say the difference this time is the surging interest in so-called green-collar jobs. President Obama wants to create 5 million of them over the next decade. What isn't clear is how the U.S. is going to prepare this work force.
Technical education for renewable-energy workers is scarce, particularly for the fast-growing wind industry. Only a handful of wind programs operate in community colleges.
The U.S. last year surpassed Germany as the world's No. 1 wind-powered nation, with more than 25,000 megawatts in place. Wind could supply 20% of America's electricity needs by 2030, up from less than 1% now, according to a recent Energy Department report.
California is the No. 3 wind state, behind Texas and Iowa. A slew of developments are in the pipeline. The economic crisis has dampened growth in the renewable sector. But the U.S. wind industry is clamoring for skilled technicians to maintain the 30,000 wind turbines already in the ground. The best workers combine the knowledge of a top-flight mechanic with the endurance of an alpine mountaineer.
"It's like [working on] a school bus on top of a really long pole," said a marketing manager for sensing and inspection technologies for General Electric Co., one of the world's top turbine makers. "It's complex. This isn't some Jiffy Lube job." A typical 1.5-megawatt GE unit costs $2.5 million installed. It sits about 30 stories above the ground at the hub, where its three 100-foot-long blades connect to the tower.
Just behind the hub is the housing for the gearbox, drive train and other components. Think of this as the wind technician's office. Except there's no elevator. Reaching it means climbing rung by rung on a narrow steel ladder attached to the inside of the tower. An agile worker can do it in less than 10 minutes, several times a day. "You earn every dollar you make in this industry. It's plain hard work."
Advice to hopefuls: Quit smoking. Lose that gut. And don't try this with a hangover. Technicians must be hyper-vigilant in an occupation that combines dizzying heights, tight spaces, high-voltage electricity and spinning metal. Fatalities are rare but unspeakably gruesome. Workers have plunged to their deaths, been electrocuted and been ground to a pulp by rotating machinery.