A Video That Shows Who We Are

I work for a great company. It is the kind of company that really does care about its workers. The couple who own it know every single person who works here, from the top executive all the way to the janitorial team. Each person is treated with respect as well, which is rare for any company today. Working for a company like this means that we have some awesome holiday parties. This past Christmas, the owners hired a video production company in Singapore to create a video that was shown right before dinner.

One of the reasons why they wanted this video shown was because it showcases what is most important to them, after their faith, which was us, the workers who make the company what it is. None of us knew that this was going to happen, even though we did see people videotaping us from time to time this past year. We just figured that the owners were up to something, never imagining that it was in prep for creating a video that was extremely touching. The owners had explained to the video production company exactly what they wanted, and the video team was able to deliver above and beyond.

What made this video so interesting is that it really showed the heart and soul of the company. We are not numbers here. We each have a name, a family, a story, and the owners wanted that showcased. We were able to catch personal glimpses into each other's lives with this video, which really meant a lot to all of us. The essence of who we are was created on this video, and it made us all appreciate our bosses even more since they make that a priority for everyone in the company. We were all given a copy of the video along with an extremely generous bonus, and most of us actually treasured the video more!

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Fishing Has Changed over the Years

I remember hanging around a lake in the summer with my dad. The bait shop had some competitions for the biggest game fish caught. I won for catching a catfish that was about as big as me. They weighed it with an old hanging spring scale, and they measured it with a tape measure. I held the top spot for catfish for a number of years. Now in competitions even the fishing scales are computerized. They weigh the fish down to the fractions of a gram, record it on a computer spreadsheet, and the prize money can be enough to buy you a new boat. I suppose the pro circuit of competition fishing was founded on those little local competitions that bait shops had at local fishing spots.

We also had what are called pay lakes where I grew up. They were all pretty much man made ponds of various sizes that were stocked with fish. You paid to fish there. If I remember right, you did not even need a state fishing license. There was usually a bait shop on the property, and there might be a bathroom and maybe even some beverages and food for sale. The shorelines of the pay lakes were almost always worn down to bare dirt. The places had an industrial look. Dad and I fished one place a few times, but we preferred natural streams and carefully managed lakes. We had plenty of rivers to fish at, but getting access was a problem. A lot of the riverbanks only had access over private property. Unless you had permission from the owners, you could not just walk over to the riverbank.

I never liked fishing in areas where you would see trash and cigarette butts. We are very careful to preserve the land for future use. Some people just consume, consume and consume without any regard for the next person. That is very sad. A nice thing about the fishing competitions I'm in now is the money that goes toward conservation efforts.

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Icons That Are Perfect for Our Website

I have always loved putting silly things on my family website. Whether it is a photo of my parents when they first started dating nearly 30 years ago or a poem that my niece wrote for her school project, I always make sure that it is something that will have the family coming back for more. It is a really simple website, and I use a lot of web icons that I was able to get from a website that sells bundles of them. These icons are really great to use when I am just posting a silly note, because the icons can tell more of a story than actual words at times.

There are a lot of family jokes that only we get, and having the icons to convey a special meaning is usually taken how it was intended. There are icons for every occasion, including holidays. For Christmas, I can put a simple message telling others Merry Christmas, and then I can include a bunch of icons like a Christmas tree, a snowman, a bunch of wrapped gifts, or a number of other icons that convey a holiday message. I can do the same for Halloween, Valentine's Day, the Fourth of July, and even smaller things like Mother's Day.

There are more than just holiday icons though. There are icons that include smiley faces, money bags, food items, and so much more. If I put a joke on the site, there are at least a dozen icons that I can put there too to make the joke even funnier. If I put a picture of my grandmother or my nephew on there, there are icons that go with their personalities. With so many icons to choose from, it is easy to keep things fresh on our family website. It is a lot of fun making it that nice too!

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Get the Best Safety Gear Available to Protect Yourself on the Job

If you work a job where heavy objects can fall on your toes, you should wear steel cap boots. If your are in an industry where you need more protection, be sure to get the steel plate to protect the top part of your foot as well. This is often called a metatarsal plate or something like that. You have the steel at your toes, and then you have a steel plate that covers the top of your foot. I have leather boots with a leather covered metatarsal plate. The first time you have something heavy fall on your foot, you will be glad to have a pair of safety boots.

The steel of a good pair of work boots takes the impact instead of the flesh and bones of your feet. In a split second you can have your foot crushed by a heavy object or have your toes cut off. Working with heavy things that are lifted by cranes is a risk. Road construction crews often use steel plates to cover holes dug in the road so traffic can go over it until the job is finished. Just a small plate is big enough to cut off toes if it slips out of the chains when being placed. I am a big believer in wearing all of my safety gear to work. It has the marks on it that could have been me if I was not wearing it.

I would not work a day without my steel cap boots, hardhat, safety glasses and gloves. I'd call off from work if I could not locate even a single piece of my safety gear. It is just too important. I have had close calls where my safety gear has protected me from injury. Plus, I make sure to buy the best safety gear available.

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They Did a Great Job for Me the Very First Time I Used Them

I love living life of on the road. I am not married and have no children, so it is the life that I want to lead right now. In order to gain a little extra free time for myself, I use and online transcription service to do the work of transcribing up all the of the lectures that I do on my tour. It gives me the space I need at night to relax a little.

I started out very passionate about wanting to be a lecturer who gets the word out to many people who come to my appearances to hear me talk. And 5 years later, I am just as passionate. While I mostly discuss the same subjects at every appearance that I do, I do research about each city or state that I am visiting and I make some changes to my entire speech. Because I travel to about 4 different cities every week, this keeps me really busy at night. I often want to go to sleep early after I do a lecture, but I do not have time often. I have to stay up to do research and transcribe everything I have said so that attendees can purchase a copy from me.

I soon learned that there is a company that will do all the transcribing. I figured that if they did a good job, it would be fantastic to get to work on just my nightly research instead. I sent over an old lecture as an experiment to see how the company would do. I got back a file the same day of the entire thing written up. I read over everything that they typed up, and it was perfect. I cannot explain just how great a thing this is for me and freeing up my time.

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We Demand a Change of Service

So you found yourself looking into Direct TV, haven't you? Don't worry, there's nothing shameful about it. I've done it myself this past week. For me it all started on Wednesday morning when Time Warner caused millions of customers to lose access to their Internet for three hours - millions. This isn't some kind of local outage that effects a few hundred people or a planned outage that might effect a thousand or two. No, this was a nation wide outrage that left 11 million people and businesses without access to the web. Completely. For three hours. Think about that for a moment.

Can you imagine the scope of it? The magnitude of money that was lost within that brief period of time? All of it caused by a single mistake caused by a single company at a single moment of time. They crippled the entire infrastructure of the web because some technician couldn't resolve an appropriate Internet Protocol Address correctly! This is a perfect example of why it is so dangerous, and so frustrating, to have only a handful of companies to be in control of access to the web. It's time for us to rally together as customers, as Americans, and demand a change.

No longer should they be in control of the web. It's long past the time where the Internet should have been considered a utility, given certain rights and privileges that protect it from corporate abuse. It's outrageous clear that both Time Warner and Comcast are doing everything that they can in order to leverage their guardianship (read: monopoly) of the web to squeeze every penny of profits out of consumers. It's as if they hate the fact that they control the web and because of that hatred, they will mistreat us and bleed us dry.

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