Book Review - Bleachers

I have always been a John Grisham fan, and enjoyed every one of his book until now. I made it to page 49 then decided that this book does not deserve my time. My wife thought that I didn't give a chance, but then again, she couldn't get all the way through it either. If you're considering this book, I would recommend picking something else.


My Friends, There is More to Life Than Non-Stick Cookware

For almost all of my adult life, I have owned non-stick cookware. I always thought it was essential. If you didn't use the non-stick stuff, you would be at the sink for hours scrubbing your dinner. Well, several years ago, my brother bought me some stainless steel pots that get used almost daily. They still look relatively new and I don't have much of a problem cleaning them either. More recently, My wife and I decided to replace our large non-stick skillet with a stainless steel one. It cooks very good and surprised to learn that it isn't all that bad to clean. As long as you preheat the skillet and clean it good, it isn't a problem. So, I would recommend paying a few extra dollars and getting a good, non-non-stick skillet. It will probably last many years longer than the regular non-stick kind.


The End is Near

Rumors are flying everywhere that Iraq's #1 most wanted, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, has taken a gunshot wound to the lung and may have fled to a neighboring country with a couple of doctors. If and when he finally kicks the bucket, I should hope that things will settle down in the country a bit. I haven't been following the news lately, but I first heard about him being treated in an Iraqi hospital last week, and the last few days I have been hearing more and more. I just heard that one of his cronies has stepped in and is filling in for him, so it must be something!


WiFi Hotspots

I was interested in finding out where wireless hotspots were in my area. You see them on TV, the people sitting around drinking coffee and surfing the internet. Well you can do a search at Hotspot Zone. Check it out!


Product Review-Digital Phone Service

Recently, I switched my household's telephone service from Cincinnati Bell to Time Warner Digital Phone. I must say, the customer service was great, they took care of everything with Cincinnati Bell, and they came out and hooked up the new equipment when they were scheduled. We got in on a promotional rate and are paying less than we were before and we have unlimited long distance now. The only problems we have ad were on occassion when making a call we get an "all circuits are busy" message. Also on occassion you can hear yourself echo. Overall, I am pleased with it.



I’ve seen the infomercials on Sunday morning television for Direct Buy. People claim to save thousands, or tens of thousands of dollars of home furnishings and building supplies. I smelt a scam so I decided to give them a call and check it out. The lady on the phone really could answer none of my questions. In fact all she could do is get all my personal information and arrange for a special appointment to check it out. I gave her false information and cut the phone call a bit short. I could just imagine getting there and having a group of high pressure salesmen trying to strongarm me into buying an expensive membership.


Take This Return and Shove It!

Once upon a time, I purchased a firescreen for my fireplace a Home Depot. After I got it home and was putting it together, I realized that there were several pieces missing, including the instructions. I decided to return it. At the return counter, I told her that all the other firescreens looked as if they had been opened before and I wanted my money back or a store credit. For some reason, she would not give me a store credit becasue it was a damaged item. My only option was to take a credit to my debit card, which is how I paid for it initially. My problem is, she told me the credit would take place in about a week. So here I am, $200 out of my checking account and no firescreen. I only wonder if this is store policy or if the lady was just being ignorant.


Closed Up Shop

Well, it's been quite a while since I did any music downloads(freebies). I decided I wanted to get a few songs and after I installed my old faithful P2P downloading software, I found that they had gone to a pay service. I discussed this with a few people I know who are "in the know" about it.I guess what it boils down to, is with everone getting sued, poeple are scared so now I have to go legit. So, I am not quite ready to pay for my music so maybe I should start saving my coke bottle caps and maybe get some freebies that way. It just seems so complicated. Oh Yeah, for legal purposes, I never downloaded anything for free, I was just kidding!!!


Service Update - Allen Concrete

For those living in Southwest Ohio, I would like to follow up on my previous post regarding Allen Concrete. I had them pour my back patio last week and I was very pleased with the work done. Scott Allen was very professional and kept me very informed on every aspect of the project. He really seemed to help me get what I want, and not what he wanted to sell me. If interested, the numebr is (513)858-6265.


Credit Unions

Whatever happened to getting good deals and inerest rates because you are a member of a credit union? It seems as though anymore, anyone can become a "member". Also I can get better rates than my credit union at the bank up the street!

Riding the Dead Horse

I guess the "TV People" think that everyone loves the Rob and Amber power team. Survivor was ok, but I thought it was a bit ridiculous to have them on The Amazing Race, and now they are going to have a big special on their wedding. What a circus. I would expect to see them eating bugs on Fear Factor next season.



Well it happened again. Like CBS, Newsweek got mud on their face from misreporting that guards at Guantanamo Bay flushed a copy of the Quran down the toilet. This sparked violence in Afghanastan last week. Read their explaination here. Something needs to be done about these news organizations reporting on unnamed sources.


Social Security

Rep. Robert Wexler, a Democrat from Florida is breaking away from his Democrat allies and introducing his own Social Security reform plan. This is much different than President Bush’s plan, in that it raises taxes (among other things), but it is expected to be welcomed by the Administration because the democrats have refused to put up any alternatives at all. My take on this is, the more people with ideas at the table, the better off we’ll be.


BradsBlog Movie Review-Finding Neverland

I am not much of a Johnny Depp fan(I think he’s a bit goofy) but he did a great job in this movie. It was a bit slow to get started, but I ended up watching it twice and I highly recommend it.


Case Closed!

Well it’s been two weeks since the “runaway bride” has been found, and her lies began to unravel. Two weeks, and I’m still reading about it in the news. This morning on CBS News They went into detail her police record, which included a couple of shoplifting charges years ago. They also mention that she is undergoing inpatient care for her wacked out condition. It’s been 2 weeks now, and I still really don’t care. Why is the news still covering this? Is there really nothing else going on in the world?

Urban Legends

From time to time, I get e-mails telling of an awful crime that is taking place or a new scam that is going around. After I get one of these e-mails, I verify it's authenticity by going to www.snopes.com. This site has a huge databank of just about every internet rumor you have ever heard of. So the next time you are getting ready to forward this crazy tale to everyone on your contacts list, do us all a favor....verify it!


Where Will It End?

"Pay no attention to the words on the labor contract..."
We saw it in the Steel industry.A certain company goes to bankruptcy court, and finds a judge that will give them the green light to go through with a bankrupcy, even though they may still be turning a profit, mearly to shed legacy costs. Once it was done, many others followed suit, in turn screwing over scores of retirees out of agreed upon benefits. Well, it has hppened again. United Airlines found a judge that will allow them to disregard it's obligations to it's retirees, and not even be in bankruptcy! Now it's just a matter of time before countless other corporations follow suit. The politicians won't touch this one!!


Google Store

I posted earlier in the month, or last month about wanting to get some Blogger attire. I finally found the Google Store, and I purchased a "Blogger" T-shirt. It cost $10.50 and there was no shipping or tax. It arrived within the week and is quite comfortable. It is not a "thick" shirt, but I think it was well worth it. I would like to find a Khaki "Blogger" hat as well, but have come up empty. I have also added the Google Store to my Blogroll.


Sticker Shock

Something that really chaps me off is when I am looking at a certain product, whether it be a vehicle, large appliance, or whatever, and cannot find the actual price. Instead they only give their “low monthly payment”. I guess this is supposed to make the item appear to be more affordable before they really stick it to you. I guess if they really posted the actual price you pay, all the Rent-a-Center type places and used car lots would be out of business.


Product Review-Troybilt Chainsaw

Last month I purchased the 20" Troybilt chainsaw, which I found as I was browsing through my Tool Crib catalog. I ordered it from Amazon.com and received a $25 promotional discount, plus no shipping charges or tax. The sale prce itself was under MSRP so I felt good about the price.(about 205 bucks) After I received it, I was impressed with how easy it started and powerful 49cc engine. I would strongly recommend this chainsaw for anyone in the market.


Video Professor

I'm sure just about everyne has seen this guy on tv, begging you to let him send you a tutorial for your computer. He claims that he will give it away, for free, and all you have to do is pay about $6 for shipping and "administration costs". What he isn't telling you, is that he will keep sending you more of these training cd's and you will be charged roughly 60 bucks a pop for them. So, if you really want to throw your money away, send your check to me.


Political Correctness

As I was driving down the highway in a construction zone, I saw a sign just like the one above. I realized that I always see the "Mommy" signs, even more so than the "Daddy" signs. I decided to go for a small trip and I counted the signs. The tally was 2 for the Mommy, and one for Daddy. I think this is ridiculous. It's not that I have a problem with women working on road crews, it's the thought that they feel they need plaster these signs everywhere, even though there normally aren't any women working on the project.


Choose Life Plate

This License plate is drawing a lawsuit by the ACLU, because the pro-abortion activists just can’t stand it! The version in Ohio is obviously promoting adoption, but not this one. I personally am pro-life, but I must question the political undertones on this plate. Should there be “choose abortion” license plates allowed? Not for me, let’s argue about it!


Gettin' Ready

I have to wonder how many people are noticing the grooming of Jeb that is going on. If you remember, when then Governor "W" was debating for the presidency, his biggest hurdle was lack of international experience. Recently, Jeb has been involved very deeply with the tsunami disaster and recently been involved with the Pope deal.


This Bugs Me

"Environmental hazards: This product is extremely toxic to fish. Do not apply to water. Do not contaminate water by disposing of equipment washwaters."

So what's the deal? Another smooth marketing ploy? I guess by calling it "earth options" they are trying to fool consumers into thinking that this is an environmentally friendly product? Come on!


Mystery Shopper

From time to time I participate in various surveys and test panels. This morning on my way home from work I heard an advertisement on the radio for becoming a mystery shopper. I would get paid to shop and report on different aspects of my shopping experience. So I called the number, 1(800) 299-0405, and I was signing up. The man explained to me that the shopping trips would last between 15 and 30 minutes, and would earn about 10-50 dollars each. After I gave some personal contact information, he went into his spiel. As he was going through his fast talk, he slipped in that there is a $99 annual membership fee. At that point I told him I wasn’t interested. I don’t like the idea of having to pay for membership, since there are no guarantees how many studies I will qualify for. I also didn’t appreciate him implying that I was cheap for not wanting to pay 27 cents a day to be able to do this. If it’s only 27 cents, why charge? This may be a perfectly legitimate deal, but I say, “Shopper Beware”.


The Southern Cross

Being from Ohio, I am not a southerner so I guess it’s really none of my business. However, I think I’ll chime in on this anyway. After serving ten years in the military, I have known many southerners, and I know how they are proud of their heritage. Southern hospitality and southern food are some of the things they are proud of. A symbol of their heritage is the Confederate flag. While many believe that the confederate flag is a symbol of racism, I strongly disagree. So the movement to eliminate the confederate flag from the modern south, I feel, is a bit extreme. If the desire is there to eliminate any form of the ol’ southern cross from today’s state flags, it should be added to the ballot and voted on. Otherwise, let’s grow up and get over it.


Three Strikes and You're Out

With all the recent controversy of steroids and baseball players, baseball commissioner Bud Selig is now asking for a 50 game suspension for first time offenders, 100 game suspensions for second offenses and a lifetime ban for third offenses. Personally, I am all for it. I really don’t think the players union will go for it though. Isn’t it also ironic that this year Barry Bonds is too tired, mentally and physically to play? Perhaps he will call it quits before he has to test for steroids and subject himself to being banned from the game.


Better check your receipt!

A friend of the family recently went to TGI Fridays and purchased a gift card valued at $25, and used her credit card to buy it. Later on, she attempted to use her credit card for another purchase and the card was declined. What happend was, when she bought the gift card, they charged her $2500.00! This is currently all getting worked out now, but this type of thing may be prevented if we check our receipts!