Category Archives: Books/Reading Materials

Goodbye Guitar Hero

The popular video game called Guitar Hero has stopped being produced. The company called Blizzard Inc stopped making the game as the sales are failing. The game was very popular for many years but interest has faded.

The game was fun for awhile and very profitable for the company. The problem was that it was expensive to make and many accessories are required. The company will go on though as it just released the popular “Call of Duty: Black Ops” game.

I can remember going to the local strip mall that had so many stores that attracted youth, games, videos, music back in “the day” I spent a good amount of time at the local guitar center dallas with their unique clientele of odd folks that I felt so at home with. Most likely I never will have that type of relationship with people like that that I met through out those younger years.

The Garage

The one place that I can really relax in is my garage. There is nothing I like more than to tinker around with a project or two in my garage. I spend hours thinking up things to make and making them. I have built a few birdhouses and other projects for the kids. The one thing that I am really proud of is my tools. I like to have whatever tool I need right at my fingertips.

The last big project I started was to make a chair. The wife had seen a picture of one she liked and I wanted to make her one for her birthday. When I started the project, I made a list of the Tools and Hardware that I would need. While I was sure that I had most of the Hand Tools I needed, I realized that I would need some new Power Drills. I knew I would have to purchase the tools I needed before I started.

It took a while for me to get everything I needed together. But I knew it would save time when I actually started working. The chair was a challenge, but I found it easy once I got started. I finished the chair and my wife loves it. She said it was the best birthday present she ever had. I owe it all to a little planning and the best tools.

New Year Resolutions

I’ve never been a big fan of New Year’s resolutions. I can’t help feel that they are land mines that doom us to failure rather than inspire us to succeed at something. Most people seem to focus on losing weight or quitting smoking or ending some bad habit. Those are hard to do and just because you make a promise on New Year’s Day to stop doing it does not make the magic solution to your problem.

This year I am going to resolve to be more sociable. I know that will be hard to measure and hard to gauge success or failure at such a noble effort, but I feel like I need to make a bigger effort to build a social network of people who have either common interests with me or who can help me achieve my own goals, like a mentor or someone in my field that can teach me or lead me to higher achievements.

So wish me luck with my resolution and I’ll wish you luck with yours.

Battery Safety

One thing that is for sure about these times is that new technologies are always coming out. That can bring new problems that were as of yet unknown. One problem is button batteries. They have been used in a number of items including cell phones and toys. It has become a safety issue.

Doctors are noticing an increased amount of cases where children have swallowed the batteries. The batteries can lodge in the throat and leach out a caustic acid that can kill. As the batteries are used in more and more products, the problem is getting bigger. Anyone that suspects that someone has swallowed a battery should report to the hospital mat once!

Free Sounds Good

My niece and her husband are tightening their belts since she is pregnant again and isn’t going to be able to work for awhile. So thinks that they will be OK with bills if hey cut back on a few things and if she takes advantage of coupons and free samples by searching online for deals.

We talked about the real math of what she was earning after expenses and she was really shocked to see how little real money she was bringing home in her paycheck. She took 30% off the top for taxes, then had to take off child care, her car payment/car insurance/gas, oil, tires and then a lot more things she hadn’t thought of. Like the true cost of lunch away from home, the cost of convenience foods for dinners when she was too tired or too rushed to cook, the cost of nice clothes, dry cleaning and pantyhose. The actual net cash she was seeing was less than $50 a week.

We all believe that she could save that same net amount by looking for Free Stuff online and using coupons, and being more budget conscious if she stayed home with the kids instead of working outside of the home. Finding Freebies is even fun – it is like a treasure hunt. She gets online in the living room while her daughter plays and finds ways to save money. I wish it were that easy for the rest of us!