Thursday, February 21, 2019

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

Usually, the best way to find the yellow brick road of your life is to start out on the dusty, dirt one. Follow the yellow brick road is an attempt to follow a course of action that you believe will lead to good things. We all want to believe that we are all on our own yellow brick road. 

In the movie, the "Wizard of Oz" Dorothy is told by the Munchkins that in order for her to get her wish, she has to get help. Dorothy then sets off with her goal in mind. The lyrics of the song gives the audience what she has in mind. She is off to see the wizard the wonderful wizard of oz, you'll find he is the wizard of wiz if ever a wiz there was,
If ever or ever a wizard that was
the wizard of oz is one because, because, because, because, because, because, because of the wonderful things he does,
you're off to see the wizard the wonderful wizard of Oz

Unlike Dorothy, we do not have a wizard waiting for us that will grant our wishes. It would nice but it would take away from the magic we create ourselves. As we start out on our own path, we become preoccupied in making the best of it, having fun, and challenging ourself that we actually stop paying attention to the path. This is unlike Dorothy who has to keep her eye on the path to make it to the Emerald City so she can meet the wizard.

As we travel our path one day with a new best friend, wearing cool clothes, feeling awesome, a teeny tiny bit taller, fresh from a WOW vacation, looking for the path you just left, you'll notice that it's 24 carats.

And you'll wonder for a long, long time, sipping on some exotic fruit drink, when the transformation actually took place

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Anxiety and relief

Anxiety or fear can be called up when you are asked to a gathering by a total stranger honouring the life of someone you've never met while you had other plans
Sometimes it is worth trying to overcome our fear and anxiety. So, accept the invitation, however irrational it may seem.
Imagination is a wonderful tool and it can help in times of anxiety. Imagine your surprise that when you present your invitation to the gatekeeper at the gate you'd notice that the invitation is written in your own hand.
Imagine that you are greeted warmly by the most wonderful, familiar faces. In your imagination, everyone is so excited. In fact, you become excited about the gathering because it turns out, you're about to meet the person you've always dreamed you'd one day become. Imagination isn't it amazing! 
Imagination can help you overcome your fear, your anxiety and help you create a new vision. In your imagination, you can allow yourself to be the hero you wanted to be when you were 10 years old.
One of the movies I love is “The Wizard of Oz”. In this movie and in the book, Dorothy is put into a very scary place with witches, wizards, talking scarecrows, talking animals, tin men and with some help and her imagination she overcomes a number of fearful obstacles to achieve her mission and to get back to a place she feels safe. 
Dorothy is the hero of this story, but she does not want to be the hero, all she wants to do is get home. Follow through is important to overcome fear and anxiety. Accept the invitation, and imagine the person you are meant to be and greet your future self with pride.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Spam Calls some ideas on how to end them

I hate spam phone calls and I bet you do as well. I read the following from an AARP email I received and I thought it was interesting and gave some good advice. To read the entire article follow the link 5 Ways to Stop Spam Calls  by Sid Kirchheimer, AARP Bulletin, October 2018 

YouMail reports, more than 12 billion robocalls were made to American homes. That’s about 4 million every hour, and a steady increase from last year. This is because they work. It costs scammers and spammers only a few dollars per day to simultaneously blast tens of millions of calls with autodialers.
So how do you defend yourself if you are targeted?

You can try not picking up. But the calls that reach your voicemail greeting could flag that yours is a working number — and ripe for future calls.

Here’s a list of do-it-yourself defences that have dropped the automated and live spam calls received by more than 90 percent.

Answer with silence. When you say hello or anything else, automated voice-activated calls launch the robocall recording or transfer you to a call center, where a live operator angles for personal and financial information. But saying nothing usually disconnects these calls within seconds, with no robo-message or callbacks from that fake number.

If it is an unsolicited “live” caller, wait for that person to speak to break the silence. If you don’t recognize the voice, hang up.

Try a “not in service” recording. Using a portable tape recorder and a microphone attached to a handset, I copied a “this number is not in service” message during a callback to a scammer’s spoofed number. Since it’s cued, I sometimes play that recording — again, saying nothing — when answering calls before they go into voicemail in hopes my number will be removed from spammer calling lists. So far, I have not gotten a single callback from those incoming numbers.

Trap ’em with an app. Smartphone users have plenty of options that flag and block some fraudulent calls and text messages. Some services are free; others cost a few bucks per month.

Customers of AT&T can use Call Protect, Verizon Wireless provides Caller Name ID, Sprint offers Premium Caller ID, and T-Mobile has Scam ID and Scam Block. You can also buy apps like YouMail and RoboKiller that will filter calls for a few bucks a month — or for free in the case of Youmail.

Another freebie for virtually every landline user: Press *77 to block “anonymous” and “private” numbers, then deactivate it anytime with *87.

To block individual numbers that get through on an iPhone, open the phone app, tap the circled “i” icon to the right of the spam number that called, scroll down and tap Block This Caller. For Android smartphones, open the phone app and tap the calling number, select Details, then Block Number.

Know which calls to avoid. The most common calling cons are pitches that promise to reduce debt and credit card rates or to get you preapproved loans; offer free or low-cost vacations, time-shares, home security systems and medical supplies; or come from government and utility company impostors.

A dropped or “one-ring” call is a common ruse to prompt a callback. Beware of area codes 268, 284, 809 and 876, which originate from Caribbean countries with high per-minute phone charges.

Robocalls tend to be highest on Friday and Tuesday, and the most frequently targeted numbers are in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, New York City, Los Angeles, Houston, Birmingham, Ala., and Miami.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Auto Culture--a quiz

My thanks to George for this quiz

Q: Who opened the first drive-in gas station?

A: Gulf opened up the first station in Pittsburgh in 1913.

Q: What city was the first to use parking meters? 

A: Oklahoma City, on July 16, 1935.

Q: Where was the first drive-in restaurant? 

A: Royce Hailey's Pig Stand opened in Dallas in 1921.

Q: True or False? The 1953 Corvette came in white, red and black. 

A: False. The 1953 'Vett's were available in one colour, Polo White.

Q: What was Ford's answer to the Chevy Corvette, and other legal street racers of the 1960's? 

A: Carroll Shelby's Mustang GT350.

Q: What was the first car fitted with an alternator, rather than a direct current dynamo? 

A: The 1960 Plymouth Valiant

Q: What was the first car fitted with a replaceable cartridge oil filter? 

A: The 1924 Chrysler.

Q: What was the first car to be offered with a "perpetual guarantee"?

A: The 1904 Acme, from Reading, PA. Perpetuity was disturbing in this case, as Acme closed down in 1911.

Q: What American luxury automaker began by making cages for birds and squirrels? 

A: The George N. Pierce Co of Buffalo, who made the Pierce Arrow, also made iceboxes.

Q: What car first referred to itself as a convertible? 

A: The 1904 Thomas Flyer, which had a removable hard top.

Q: What car was the first to have its radio antenna embedded in the windshield?

A: The 1969 Pontiac Grand Prix.

Q: What car used the first successful series-production hydraulic valve lifters? 

A: The 1930 Cadillac 452, the first production V16

Q: Where was the World's first three-colour traffic lights installed?

A: Detroit, Michigan in 1919. Two years later they experimented with synchronized lights.

Q: What type of car had the distinction of being GM's 100 millionth car built in the U.S.? 

A: March 16, 1966, saw an Olds Tornado roll out of Lansing, Michigan with that honour.

Q: Where was the first drive-in movie theatre opened, and when?

A: Camden, NJ in 1933

Q: What autos were the first to use a standardized production key-start system? 
A: The 1949 Chryslers

Q: What did the Olds designation 4-4-2 stand for? 

A: 4 barrel carburetor, 4-speed transmission, and dual exhaust.

Q: What car was the first to place the horn button in the center of the steering wheel? 

A: The 1915 Scripps-Booth Model C. The car also was the first with electric door latches.

Q: What U.S. production car had the quickest 0-60 mph time? 

A: The 1962 Chevrolet Impala SS 409.

Q: What's the only car to appear simultaneously on the covers of Time and Newsweek? 

A: The Mustang

Q: What was the lowest priced mass produced American car? 

A: The 1925 Ford Model T Runabout. Cost $260, $5 less than 1924.

Q: What is the fastest internal-combustion American production car? 

A: The 1998 Dodge Viper GETS-R, tested by Motor Trend magazine at 192.6 mph.

Q: What automaker's first logo incorporated the Star of David?

A: The Dodge Brothers.

Q: Who wrote to Henry Ford, "I have drove Fords exclusively when I could get away with one It has got every other car skinned, and even if my business hasn't been strictly legal it don't hurt anything to tell you what a fine car you got in the V-8"?

A: Clyde Barrow (of Bonnie and Clyde) in 1934.

Q: What car was the first production V12, as well as the first production car with aluminum pistons? 

A: The 1915 Packard Twin-Six.   Used during WWI in Italy,
these motors inspired Enzi Ferrari to adopt the V12 himself in 1948.

Q: What was the first car to use power-operated seats? 

A: They were first used on the 1947 Packard line.

Q: Which of the Chrysler "letter cars" sold the fewest amount? 

A: Only 400, 1963, 300J's were sold

Q: What car company was originally known as Swallow Sidecars (aka SS)? 

A: Jaguar, which was an SS model first in 1935, and ultimately the whole company by 1945.

Q: What car delivered the first production V12 engine? 

A: The cylinder wars were kicked off in 1915 after Packard's chief engineer, Col. Jesse Vincent, introduced its Twin-Six.

Q: When were seat belts first fitted to a motor vehicle? 

A: In 1902, in a Baker Electric streamliner racer which crashed at 100 mph. on Staten Island!

Q: In January 1930, Cadillac debuted it's V16 in a car named for a theatrical version of a 1920's film seen by Harley Earl while designing the body, What's that name?

A: The "Madam X", a custom coach designed by Earl and built by Fleetwood. The sedan featured a retractable landau top above the rear seat.

Q: Which car company started out German, yet became French after WWI?

A: Bugatti, founded in Molsheim in 1909, became French when Alsace returned to French rule.

Q: In what model year did Cadillac introduce the first electric sunroof? 

A: 1969

Q: What U.S. production car had the largest 4-cylinder-engine? 

A: The 1907 Thomas sported a 571 cu. in. (9.2liter) engine.

Q: What car was reportedly designed on the back of a Northwest Airlines airsickness bag and released on April Fool's Day, 1970?

A: 1970 Gremlin, (AMC)

Q: What is the Spirit of Ecstasy? 

A: The official name of the mascot of Rolls Royce, she is the lady on top of their radiators Also known as "Nellie in her nighty".

Q: What was the inspiration for MG's famed octagon-shaped badge?

A: The shape of founder Cecil Kimber's dining table.  MG stands for Morris Garages.

Q: In what year did the "double-R" Rolls Royce badge change from red to black?

A: 1933

Trivia Extra.
Ford, who made the first pickup trucks, shipped them to dealers in wood crates that the new owners had to assemble using the crates as the beds of the trucks.  The new owners had to go to the dealers to get the crates, thus they had to "pick-up" the trucks. And now you know the "rest of the story."