An Open Letter To New York’s Mayor Bloomberg On His Handling Of The Post-Hurricane Sandy New York Marathon

Dear Mayor Bloomberg,

You did it, buddy.
Yep, you really stepped on your pee pee (again).
But take heart, because I’ve got a way out for you and believe me, I’ve stepped on mine a time or two and have had to think fast.
But you’d better hurry because Facebook and Twitter are about to crown you King Wingnut.

So here is my action plan for you:

Get a few thousand backpacks and fill them with relief supplies.
Find the shameless runners who still want to compete and hand out the now-full packs.
Turn them in the direction of the hardest-hit areas and send them on their way.

Of course, you’d also need to change the name of the race to “The New York Un-Fair-Athon” to fully atone, but you can do it, Mikey!

We’re behind you…

A fellow part-time mistake-maker

PS – Even the Associated Press is riding your tail now… here’s the scoop.

Identity Theft? How About Hiding Your Identity While Online By Surfing Anonymously!

Whenever you surf the web, you’re leaving a trail, and the trail is a lot more inclusive than you may think.  What’s the harm? Well, here are just some of the things that can be easily tracked:

  • Online travels/clicks
  • Your operating system
  • Browser type

It gets worse:

  • Your machine name (knowing this can be more damaging than you may think)
  • Last sites you’ve visited,
  • History list
  • Gain access to delve into your cache
  • Your IP address and use that to learn basic information about you such as your geographic location and more.

Unless you take action, your life is an open book to a growing list of bad types that may turn you and your identity into a target.

Although it’s not possible to be truly anonymous online without paying a token amount to a proxy service… but once you’re in, it’s very simple to surf anonymously and keep your identity and information secure. A service such as Proxify, which keeps your IP address concealed, helps you search without being identified.

 

“But I use anti-virus and privacy software! I’m safe.”

You may not like it, but your IP (Internet Protocol) address makes it very simple for anyone with a little bit of special knowledge to track your activity. Who would want to do this?

  • Law enforcement (if you’re breaking the law, stop here and don’t learn any more. You should get caught).
  • Your insurance company – oh yes, you broke your ankle skydiving but told them you fell out of a tree. But you were online at the drop zone and posted some cool stuff without using your name, right? Wrong, if they get your IP address, they’ll find out.
  • Identity thieves – if you’re like most online users, a good identity thief can put together the pieces of your life story. They do it in such a convincing way that they can then use that information to impersonate you. Then you’re toast.
  • Divorce attorney/private investigator – enough said. The less ammo you give them, the better it will be for you. Without concealing your online identity from even an average scumbag attorney or private investigator, you’ll be giving them more rope for your hanging. I’ll ask some of my friends for permission before posting what they’ve been through. But, let’s leave it at this – it scared me and I don’t scare easily!

Basically, unless you want to be exposed, using a proxy service is a must.

Exactly how does a service like Proxify work? Well, here’s a little geek speak for you

It can use an SSH tunnel, already created and listening to a localhost. It uses PuTTy to dynamically listen in to the host and redirect traffic through the “tunnel”. The application is then used to hook applications into using the tunnel without configuring the different applications itself.

I know, it doesn’t sound exciting, but the ramifications are huge, especially air-tight security against “man-in-the-middle” attacks. You can tweak the service for increased speed or security, so your experience doesn’t have to be in a virtual stranglehold.

Remember, if you think you have nothing to hide… you’re probably mistaken.

Cal

Theodent – Chocolate-Derived Toothpaste Trumps Flouride… And It’s Safe For Your Kids!

Toothpaste made from chocolate? C’mon, really?!
Actually, yes! As a parent, it’s nice to know that I don’t have to be afraid of a product designed to promote health (as is the case with flouride). When we first had children, I was stunned at the warnings and found myself cringing when it came time to get the kids started brushing their teeth. Imagine telling a 2 or 3 yr old not to swallow something that tastes like bubblegum!

Thanks to Theodent, we don’t have to worry. And, if you like good music, you’ll like this video:

You can get it at Whole Foods soon, or order online at http://www.Theodent.com
Find them on Twitter http://www.twitter.com/theodent and Facebook http://www.facebook.com/theodent

Cal

Zombie Mayhem…

… does not exist.
BUT if it did, how would zombies react to an organic diet vs. their usual living fodder?

First, let’s look at the pro’s and con’s of their current culinary habits:

  • Pro – it’s renewable. We seem to keep making more humans… and talk about convenience! In most movies, all zombies need to do is hang out and wait for the stupid one to walk or run right into them while looking the wrong way. Puts McDonald’s to shame, I say.
  • Con – it’s painful. I don’t know about you, but getting eaten alive and having what’s left of you turn into one of the living dead would basically suck.
  • Pro – no refrigeration necessary. Low carbon footprint diet? Eco-friendly zombies? Whoda thunk it!
  • Con – it creates one heck of a mess. Have you ever smelled zombie breath?
  • Pro – thinning the herd. All you need to do is run faster than the slowest, ergo weakest, member of the human pack.
  • Con – that just ain’t fair. Smacks of Nazi eugenics.
  • Pro – another shot at life… in a way. Hey, they’re not called the “living dead” for no reason!
  • Con – quality of life issues abound.

So, given the above pro’s and con’s, what difference would an organic diet have on our undead zombie pals?
Answer?

Let’s examine this scene from George Romero’s “Return of the Living Dead” where we may get an actual answer from a talking zombie:

Well, at least we know they like brains. As for organic chow? I have no idea.
Seems to me we’d be to busy running away or barricading ourselves in to worry about compost, pesticides and sustainable gardening practices… not to mention the fact that our grass-fed bovine buddies couldn’t outrun the ravenous hoard and would only encourage them. Have you ever seen how fast some of them could run in Day of The Dead? And they’re not even wearing Adidas’ latest!

After some thought (perhaps too much thought, you’re saying) I’m of the belief that an organic diet would help in the short term by giving healthy humans a leg up (pardon the pun) on their less-healthy compadres. So after the Zombie Apocalypse is over, those in their right minds would stand a better chance of surviving by virtue of their initial health at the outset.

That is, of course, unless the all-brain zombie food pyramid diet makes them smarter with every meal…

courtesy of The Onion - the zombie food pyramid brain diet

What do you think? Leave your comments and let’s dig into this topic :)

Cal

 

What to do when the Twitter “Fail Whale” pops up…

This one is just a release for my Twitter jones because… yep… Twitter is over-capacity and I c-c-can’t t-t-t-tweet!

twitter over capacity fail whale imageActually, I was in the middle of coaching someone and had to hold off because even the cached page is incomplete.
Oh the travails of being a geek.

Cal

The vital importance of proofreading. AKA A state I’d like to visit :)

Some things deserve attention.

Sans too much comment, here is a case study my journalism school professors would no doubt have highlighted

virgina instead of virginia

This was tweeted by @2Busy2Tweet , aka 2Busy2Proof
Send more samples like this and I’ll post them.

All the best,

Cal