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Of Inkwells and Blogs

Learning to write was and still is a journey.  I recall a school desk with a round hole in the upper-right-hand corner.  Each of us was given a new dip pen, a new bottle to put in that hole, and a blotter.  No pigtail dipping allowed.  We practiced Palmer Method cursive writing with that dip pen.  No, we’re not talking 1800s here, it was the early 1950s.  Legible writing, spelling, and grammar were drilled into each of us daily.  It worked.  Sadly, the days of dip pens were numbered, and the following year or two was wooden pencils and cartridge fountain pens.  Ball-point followed well through high school and college, but the lessons learned were never forgotten.

My first computer?  A Radio Shack TRS-80 MC-10 with a chiclet keyboard and built-in Basic programming language.  4K RAM, and it plugged into a TV.  If you wanted to save your program, a cassette recorder was the best answer.  Next, the big time – a Zenith EZ-PC.  Black and white monitor, two 720K floppy drives – no hard drive.  Believe it or not, it ran Wordperfect, AutoCAD, DBase III+ and Lotus 1-2-3.  Modems?  What for?  No internet existed outside university testing labs.

…and here I am writing a Blog?

I’ve worked in IT for almost 30 years now, learning as I went, breaking things just so I could figure out how to fix them.  Exploring – always exploring.  I’m a firm believer in the axiom that each day is worthwhile only if you learn something new.

Always do your best, take pride in your work, and keep learning!

Pro Team Sports?

Another year, same old same old… A ‘team’ sports event is not the place for personal statements. Act as a team or get out!

RayNetCom

I’m not much of a team sports watcher, but we here in the USA have taken ‘pro’ sports to the extreme.  When I was attending Pirates ‘knothole’ games, an average baseball player salary was somewhere around $10,000 per year.  In the time it’s taken the minimum wage to go from $1.80 to $7.25 per hour, team sports ‘pro’ compensation has gone from that $10,000/yr figure to an average of $2,000,000 + /yr.

Team sports isn’t about the teams anymore, but about the players, their lifestyles, their endorsements.  We have so lost the idea of ‘team sports’ that players don’t feel the need to play as a team, but to outperform, outclass, do anything to NOT be a team member.

Today’s ‘pro’ is idolized, worshiped, revered – for what?  For the most part, the more lavish and outlandish your lifestyle, the more you align yourself with thugs and infamy, the more…

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First, a bit of background.  I turned 70 in February 2017 and was a smoker for about 50 of those years.  Pipes, cigars, cigarettes (at one point 4 packs a day – of course, cigarettes were $0.35 cents or less a pack), and I inhaled everything.  Filters, no filters, no difference.

I knew I needed to quit, and nothing helped – cold turkey, patches, nothing worked.  I felt lousy.  I heard about e-cigarettes and my interest was piqued.  The first ones that I tried (in the early days of e-cigs) were cartomizers with exceptionally wimpy vapor production and little flavor.  I supplemented analogs with e-cigs and even got a no smoking room at a motel during a business-related technical conference.  High nicotine, little vapor – not a winner.

As the vaping industry matured and my understanding of the product increased, I was able to achieve greater satisfaction with some of the early tanks and variable voltage\variable wattage devices.  More visible vapor with same or less nicotine provided more enjoyment but still missed the mark.

Finally came the newer higher powered low resistance mods capable of producing massive amounts of visible vapor clouds!  There was one problem – the nicotine was now too high, and the ‘throat hit’ from the nicotine was detrimental to my enjoyment.  The cure for that?  Remove the nicotine.  This gave me visible clouds, a pleasant warm vapor on inhale, and best of all, no nicotine.

A big ‘THANK YOU’ goes out to The Steam Co. for their assistance and two of their unique blends that got me through the rough spots.  Those would be Merlyn’s Bow and Kintaro.

OK, now that the rambling preamble is over (would that constitute a preramble?), to the question in the title…

My vape of choice is a 200W mod with battery protection and a tank with temperature-controlled nickel steel coils.  The liquid is a 50-50 mix of USP Vegetable Glycerin and Propylene Glycol, both widely used in the food industry.  Also in the liquid are food-grade flavorings, no coloring or other additives.  No nicotine – zero, zilch, nada, bupkis nicotine.

So I ask – how is that a tobacco product and why should the government treat it as such?  There’s nothing in there that comes from tobacco or even remotely resembles it.  This has allowed me to remain smoke-free after almost 2 years when nothing else worked, and the government now wants to regulate and tax the hell out of it because… why?

By the way, the VG/PG mixture above (possibly in different proportions) is used widely in Hollywood to simulate foggy or smoky conditions.  I don’t see actors walking off the job with health concerns over it, or complaining that they have to breathe second-hand vapor.

Just sayin’…

What’s news?

I believe in free press. The news media has not only a right, but a duty to report the facts. Big word there, ‘facts’. Not spin, not opinion, but facts. CNN, NBC, CBS, yes, even FOX, are guilty of slanting news to their particular political philosophy. Today’s news is NOT news – it’s opinion, it’s editorializing. News reporting is supposed to be “Today this happened”, not having 10 people give you their opinion of why it happened. If you have not seen the movie ‘V for Vendetta’, play close attention to the media’s machinations. It’s identical to what we’ve come to accept as ‘news’ at this time. Fifty, sixty years ago, editorials occupied one, maybe two pages of the newspaper. The rest of the news section was just that, unspun, non-politicized facts.  Now you can’t find facts between the opinions – and that’s the front page.

News media, please give me facts and let me make up my own mind.

Just sayin’…

Illegal and the Ill Eagle

Yes, this country is sick.  We have lost sight of just how unique we are.  What is the Liberal’s problem? Selective hearing? I (read conservatives) have no, zero, zip, nada, bupkis problem with immigration. We are not intent on becoming isolationists, or some combination of Nazi and Apartheid zealots. Liberals don’t seem to understand or even hear the word ‘illegal’. My great-grandparents were immigrants – LEGAL immigrants – one side from England, the other Germany. I’m proud of my heritage. They came here, embraced the melting pot, assimilated, and they and their families welcomed yet more LEGAL immigrants in future generations. What am I not saying or understanding? These illegals sneak in, insisting that we house, clothe, feed, even educate them at our (the legal immigrant’s) expense. On top of that, they don’t/won’t/are forbidden to assimilate, demanding we accept their isolationist enclaves and their archaic laws. Roving gangs of illegals refusing to assimilate terrorize American citizens.  This is not the America I grew up in or even understand.

 

Benefit of the Doubt

It’s less than 2 weeks before election day, and it’s apparent that the scandals of HRC have no effect on Obama’s sheep.  I watched a news clip with a couple of early voters in Florida, and their comments were that they knew she was not perfect, she’d ‘made a mistake’, but she deserved another chance and benefit of the doubt.  Really?

One mistake, certainly.  Candidates are not perfect, they’re human, and if anyone votes for a candidate because of his or her purity, they’re insane.  Humans make mistakes, we’re not perfect, we’re not God.  Two mistakes and I’ve got a bit of serious thinking to do about their veracity and viability.  Two of the SAME mistakes or continued reckless behavior simply tells me they’re either incompetent or think that we the voters are stupid. Either way, they will not get my vote.

We as a country are headed in the wrong direction and need new leadership.  Being President does not mean having all the answers, but knowing who to ask and trust for the right answers.  With the Clintons, it’s who will give them the most money or power.  Their direction will head us further down the toilet bowl, and the handle has already been pulled.

We need someone to lift us out of there.  To finish with the toilet analogy, may the effects of their deeds speed their journey into the septic tank they deserve.

 

GP & SQL Compatibility

I replied to a GPUG question earlier today from someone wanting to use SQL 2016 with GP 2015.  It bears repeating here and applies to similar situations as well.

When Microsoft says not compatible, they mean it. It may work, but it’s not supported. If you do run into an issue with compatibility down the road, you have just burned all bridges, since you won’t likely be able to restore it later to a supported SQL version. At that point you can only hope that you’ve kept a copy of databases from the earlier SQL version and reenter everything from that point, or start over. It’s usually a deprecated function is specified in GP coding that will be the problem, and the only fix is to rewrite the software.

For years I was the “Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead” guy, the one that could always trick the system into making it work after a client broke it, but after seeing the destruction and mayhem it can cause down the road (read potentially hundreds of consulting hours), it’s wise to trust Microsoft’s compatibility list. It’s there for a reason.

I’m Melting!

2 Chronicles 7:14 “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” Read wicked ways = Clinton’s Socialist agenda.

A vote against Trump is a vote for an everlasting Socialist quagmire of greed, deception, and filth with no place for citizens. We become the Soylent Green that feeds the increasingly destructive engine of Democratic Socialism.

Clinton is sitting at the right hand of Satan, encourages murdering children, and encourages (as did her predecessor) confusion of the sexes. There is nothing good with or about her. I only hope that her end comes the night of November 8, 2016, and we as Dorothy in Oz hear ” You cursed brat! Look what you’ve done! I’m melting! melting! Oh, what a world! What a world! Who would have thought a good little girl like you could destroy my beautiful wickedness? Oooooh, look out! I’m going! Oooooh! Ooooooh! “


Who said I couldn’t quote the Bible and L. Frank Baum in one post?  … just sayin’

A Quiet Rage

A quiet rage is growing in this country against those who seek the crowning of Queen Hillary.  Morals and supposedly adult behavior are cast aside in the desperate need to up the ante in dirty politics.

It would seem that we the people have no say in these political amoral and immoral tactics other than to accept them.  The queen and her court of jesters and blind fools made up of pop stars and once-respected news media now await the predicted inevitable result of her majesty ascending the throne to grace her deplorable subjects with bread and water while she eats cake and drinks champagne.  It isn’t about what’s right, it’s about power.  She is the evil of all evils.  You think Obama was bad?  Just wait until HRC decrees the borders open and America fair game for control from external forces.  Power and control – that’s her objective.  She’s open to taking control of the UN as well, I’m sure.

The adoring media and their polls predict an easy win for her majesty.

Social media says differently.  I can only hope that on election day that those warriors with their pent-up rage emerge from behind their computers and cast their vote against the continuing rule of lies and corruption.

No, I’m not a fan of Trump, but I will vote for whoever has the best chance of defeating the sheer undisguised evil that is HRC.

If you haven’t seen the 2005 movie “V for Vendetta” please do so.  If you have seen it, treat yourself and watch it again.

Remember, remember the 8th of November…  Yeah, I know the date’s wrong, but it was too good to pass up.

Pro Team Sports?

I’m not much of a team sports watcher, but we here in the USA have taken ‘pro’ sports to the extreme.  When I was attending Pirates ‘knothole’ games, an average baseball player salary was somewhere around $10,000 per year.  In the time it’s taken the minimum wage to go from $1.80 to $7.25 per hour, team sports ‘pro’ compensation has gone from that $10,000/yr figure to an average of $2,000,000 + /yr.

Team sports isn’t about the teams anymore, but about the players, their lifestyles, their endorsements.  We have so lost the idea of ‘team sports’ that players don’t feel the need to play as a team, but to outperform, outclass, do anything to NOT be a team member.

Today’s ‘pro’ is idolized, worshiped, revered – for what?  For the most part, the more lavish and outlandish your lifestyle, the more you align yourself with thugs and infamy, the more money and ‘respect’ you command.  These are NOT the types we want or need our young people looking up to.  Wife beating, child beating, no problem – pay them and the media off, then bask in your notoriety.

There are a lot of people, I’m certain that would welcome the opportunity to play on a team as a team member.  I say we take all these overpaid primadonnas that want to protest one thing or another and throw them out.  Play team sports as a team, and if you want to make waves, bye-bye.  The same philosophy goes for cheerleaders, marching bands, and so on.  Imagine a cheerleading routine or a college band halftime show where some of the participants protested.  Yeah, not so great a view.  …but teams expect us to put up with anarchy.

NFL wonders if their player’s protests are causing a decrease in attendance?  Really?  Team sports, team behavior – no exceptions.

All Lives Matter

All.  Lives.  Matter.  All.

If BLM truly cares about their precious Black Lives, why don’t they use their leverage to clean up Chicago, Baltimore, St. Louis, etc.?

The answer is simple – BLM is a HATE GROUP, people, and care only about hating everyone that is not the same color as they are.  Racist?  I think so!

There’s no place for racism in America.  None.  …and no place for groups like BLM.  Grow up and pull yourselves out of the mire.  The government’s not going to do it, they simply reinforce your plight.  There are people of ALL colors that need to pull themselves up. Get a job. Work your way up, and don’t settle for government handouts.  It’s a trap, and a bottomless life-sucking hole.