Saturday, November 23, 2013

Food and teeth

Man, I forgot how good mashed potatoes and chicken gravy from gladstone's chicken was. I separated the dark meat from the bones, and put it into the Vitamix Blender, and it's a smooth consistency. Man, it is really really good. Having plastic bridges covering the reduced teeth, while the crowns are being created is concerning. I've tried eating a banana muffin, and had the bridge come loose, so I'm extra cautious. The high end blender seems to do a heck of a job. I like the design principles, and the wide base. My parents got one, and I'd been looking at a couple of them, at Williams-Sonoma, and decided to splurge. It did a good job with the microwaved vegetables, and a good job with the chicken mashed potatoes and gravy. We've used mom's to blend up some soup, and make it easier to consume. I'll probably add the rest of the chicken to the mixture before long. I am happier now that I've found some flavors that taste quite nice.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013


Supposedly, HHS Director Kathleen Sebelius might have misspoke. I wondered, But supposedly, the fine folks at Buzzfeed and the Washington post may have implied that she could voluntarily give up medicare, and forgo employer contributions in order to choose a plan.

Who knows?

The process of extensive dental work

Something is probably to be said about the process of extensive dental work. It is expensive. Yes, but it is also interesting how some prosthedontists' offices are trying to make more use of technology. When I first got the news about the need to do 6 or so crowns for my front teeth, I was discouraged, and mostly supposing that the dentist was mostly seeing dollar signs. Then I went to a second dentist for a second opinion, he took a look inside of my mouth, and quickly concluded that it was too complicated of a case for him to get involved with. He did refer me to a friend of his, who is a prosthedontist. I went to this fellow, and he was not part of the dental insurance plan, at the time, so I asked about some other prosthedontists, and he said that this other guy is good, and he has a dental lab as part of the practice (another guy wasn't as good, as his practice was based out of a strip mall, or whatever). So, in trying to get the best fit for the future crowns digital scans and 3D computer images were taken. I guess the system is new to the prosthedontist, so they want to see me again. Teeth are important. I see that the temporary crowns look nice. Maybe the ability of people to pay for major dental work may be less for some people, maybe the plans most people have (if they have) cover less.

I mentioned to a co-worker about going to a prosthedontist, and that drew a sharp inhale, followed by "Well, I think prosthedontist is a couple of specialties above dentist, periodontist, orthodontist, whatever else." There might have been mention made about possibly needing to take out a construction loan, to finance it. I am fortunate in that my credit score is good, and we do a pretty good job of making payments on debts.

I like my job. Technology is pretty neat.

Which brings me back around to observing all of the processes which go on at a prosthedontist's office. There appear to be multiple practitioners, assisting with a variety of tasks, and that doesn't even really look back in the dental lab area. It is interesting how people contribute to operations which help the wheels on the bus go 'round and 'round.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Lou Reed RIP

Legendary rock musician Lou Reed has died at 71 from complications following a liver transplant Sun, 27 Oct 2013 19:21:11 GMT - This is a developing story and we expect to have more information soon. Go to for further developments. I guess some people live hard and party hard, and then try to prolong life. I wonder when Lou had his liver Transplant. (Hmm, wikipedia) OK, April 2013 he had the liver transplant.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Cake Boss cake from BJ's Warehouse Club

I was going back and forth about value for the purchase of the cake. After all, the Duff's ice cream with cake pieces sells in the neighborhood of one fifth to one sixth of the price. Granted, we aren't talking about the same thing. Ice cream is inherently different from cake. Cake is different from Cheesecake. My wife wanted me to get the cake because this has been a recurring theme where I'd be excited, and back away when trying to compare the value proposition of getting the cake. I did get the Va-Va-Va Velvet cake, and the small piece I had told me that it was worth it. The Cake Boss had different types of cake, but when we were at the store, the red velvet was the only one available. There is a seven layer carrot cake available from Mitchell's Fish Market which is ablsolutely awesome. And that cake is also very expensive, but I guess the ingredients to some cakes are more than others. And the market will bare what the market will bare.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

What happens when the *S* hits the fan?

Imagine that the self-inflicted shutdown furlough stretches on for awhile, and then the *S* hits the fan. Who is to blame? What really happened? Why didn't we know more about what was happening? It doesn't have to be something as big as a Mumbai style attack, nor something similar to a Westgate mall in Nairobi. It doesn't have to be a zero-day exploit taking advantage of some network vulnerability. Who will own the problem? Will our ability to deal with what happens next be impacted by reduced staffing levels? I'm not an expert, and people say I worry too much, but I would not like for stuff to start to go wrong while the nation is at a reduced staffing level. Many people will probably be ready to return when needed, barring mass casualties. We don't need to engage in this self-immolation.
Technology is good. Having dominance is good, but to have half of the team sitting on the sidelines doesn't really make much sense.
Criminal behaviors are one thing, international disputes could be another area. I'm not going to think about things that could go wrong with having aircraft inspectors, food safety inspectors, and epidemiologists on the sidelines. Most likely nothing will happen during this short time frame where our vision and hearing is reduced.
If you see something, say something.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

I like travel

I like travel. I like going to different places, and staying at a hotel. It can be nice. Getting away from the daily responsibilities at work can be nice some of the time. Previously, we've been to Orlando, and stayed at a few different places near there, mostly to do Disney. Frequently, we would choose not to stay over, and make to trip back and forth. But Hotel hopping at Disney can be kind of fun. There are different restaurants near the different Disney properties, which is interesting as well.

I like food. I like the tastes, smells. I like a couple of the "better" grocery stores around. We pretty much enjoy the Publix Greenwise Marketplace, near the trendy neighborhood of Hype Park in Tampa. Last night we picked up some meals from the butcher shop, mostly just meat prepared, ready to be stuck into the oven.

We also have done the Fresh Market near Dale Mabry and Fletcher, which has some other pre-packaged meals waiting to be heated. I picked up some Thai Noodles which was surprisingly good. I thought that it might have been trickier eating, considering I am just about one and a half weeks following some oral surgery, crown lengthening, in preparation for some extensive crowns. Youtube has videos of many things. I wouldn't suggest looking for videos of crown lengthening procedures prior to having it done. The pain medications are okay.

I guess the big thing they worry about is the healing processes. Making sure the surgical site (mouth) doesn't get infected, injured.

I've found a few hotels here in Tampa with restaurants that have some nice things on the menu. I like the French Onion Soup at Mangroves at Embassy Suites on USF's campus. I've also found French Onion Soup at Crisper's (salad place) was pretty good as well.

Travel should be fun moving forward.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Affordable Care Act I get that healthcare is a big complicated mess. I get that it can be expensive to pay for health care services. I'm not sure that there is an ideal solution. I don't know that people who are unemployed will be able to afford even co-payments for doctors visits, and stuff like that.
I get that part of the reason that people go into Medicine for a career is so that they can get a pretty good job, and hopefully help others to live healthy productive lives, by encouraging the use of some medications to treat some conditions. Encouraging people to stop smoking, and not drink as many alcoholic drinks if one wishes to live a long life.
Some diseases, such as Type 2 diabetes, come from eating too much.
There are still some people who choose to live in situations which are likelier than not to lead toward an earlier death. Many forms of drug addiction might fall into this category. Those who don't have a stable mailing address are perhaps also more problematic to engage with.
I don't think that the current proposal to defund the package of the affordable care act is particularly beneficial to those who are seeking to do so at this time. The fact that it was written and passed through congress is in and of itself impressive. If the republicans want to reduce funding provided for implementation, they can probably do that, but to try to eliminate the funding is silly.
Congress should pass bills, which keep parts of the federal government running. I believe they may have done so with the department of defense, but I don't think the other departments have had their funding levels approved. Which to me seems kind of odd.

Promising Events

Promising Events.
So much in life is lived with a hope for a better future. Trying to become part of that brighter future, for many probably is a big reason to continue. At work, there was a big innovation submission idea program, which used a lot of technology to accept ideas for proposals aimed at trying to improve efficiencies, and trying to improve conditions and help with cost containment.
I submitted an idea about trying to improve the communication between management and employees through greater use of blogs and whatnot, but what was really exciting was seeing a proposal from one of the R&D guys about trying to make use of Google Glass with some of the TBI folks to determine if it can help with way finding and situational awareness. Naturally, a goal would be to help increase the speed of community reintegration.
I engaged the R&D guy in some e-mail communication, and he's a big wheel in the organization, so I was curious as to why the suggestion was made, and he told me that as an administrator, he doesn't do research, the proposal would need to come from a researcher, and be peer reviewed and funded.
As I think I can see the value of the google glass proposal, I also recognize that the costs of the devices are likely high, but I'm just a consumer electronics guy looking at things, not really thinking about the quality of life improvements that could be made. How to justify quality of life improvements on in terms of rehabilitation potentials.
As a rehabilitating TBI survivor type-of-individual, I think it's an awesome idea. I am a big advocate of making greater use of technologies to improve Quality of life measures.
I've wanted to get involved with some of the stuff at work, but as work is, my supervisory chain of command can't allow me to do other stuff. Oh well. It is interesting to be aware of other things happening in rehabilitation spaces.
I like being employed. Contributing to the operations of the computer department by processing laptops is pretty good.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Chinese Tourists

Chinese Tourists.
I was reading, and I came across this from the NYTimes:
To judge from the grumbling across the globe, such guidelines may be necessary. But the greatest opprobrium seems to be coming from fellow Chinese. In May, a mainland Chinese tourist in Luxor, Egypt, discovered that a compatriot had carved his own hieroglyphics on the wall of a 3,500-year-old temple. “Ding Jinhao was here,” it declared. A photo of the offending scrawl spread rapidly on Chinese social media, and outraged citizens tracked down the 15-year-old vandal. The uproar subsided after his parents issued a public apology.
I'm sorry, but to me that seems pretty funny. I'm sure that the archeologists weren't appreciative of the vandalism. Still, it is a little bit humorous. Imagining the Chinese characters alongside the hieroglyphs.
I realize from our visits to other natinal parks, and have been scolded against taking souvenir rocks from death valley, or wherever, "Imagine what would happen if each of the tourists took a rock." A similar thing could apply to Chinese graffitti.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Yesterday was a good day

Yesterday, we started out that we were going to take advantage of a groupon offer to tour the American Victory ship museum (a WWII ship anchored near Downtown Tampa).  We didn't know that Traffic from SR 60 would be as bad as it was.  We ended up saying enough of this, instead we went to the outlet mall at Ellenton.  Before that though, we had lunch at IKEA Tampa.  We split an order of swedish meatballs.  We didn't even eat the whole order of swedish meatballs with mashed potatoes and lingonberries jelly.  It was good.  This morning, we finished moving the garage stuff around, and painting an epoxy coat on our floor.  The silver gray color of the epoxy floor looks good.  We just got the one step epoxy from Home Depot.  The Home Depot paint sales lady told us that the paint should be drivable on in about 5 days, walkable in 3.  I guess it's been about 8 and a half days since the car part of the garage had a car on top of it.  I guess the heat from the tires is usually what causes issues.  I hope the epoxy floors hold up.

Yesterday, we also drove to Sarasota, and saw the kissing sailor statue back near Marina Jack's.    It had been removed because it was struck by a motorist.  We saw some pelicans and other birds in trees near Mote Marine laboratory.   We also stopped near Longboat Key, and walked to the beach, where there were several birds at the shore line, feeding.  It was cool.  I enjoyed that part of the early evening.  I really like observing nature, and birds in particular.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

I consider my world to be relatively small.  Due to limited reflexes, processing, or whatever other factors, I choose not to drive, because an accident put things into perspective, and the costs of insurance would likely be too high.  I can adjust to living in a small world, but it is nice that I have a wife who can drive, and take me places.  

Yesterday, we went to Wright's Gourmet Sandwiches, and the Monte Cristo sandwich that I got there was quite large, I had a quarter of the sandwich, and put the other 3/4s of the sandwich away.   I put them in little tubbies, and surprisingly, they fit kind of well.  This morning, I fixed a second quarter of the sandwich.  I guess it has Turkey and Ham, Cheese and pickles, along with mustard and whatever else they use as condiments.  

We have found a very nice place for cakes in Tampa.  Sweet Tweets Cakery at North Dale Mabry has some cupcakes that are really nice. is the website, and the cupcakes are better, in my opinion than Gigi's Cupcakes.  Gigi's has good cupcakes, but I think the amount of frosting is a bit over the top.  There are a couple of Gigi's cupcakes around in town, so they may be a franchise. is the website.

I live close to work, so I usually walk home from work.  My wife usually drops me off in the morning.  I work at a hospital.  I think it would be really cool if they'd do more to embrace the technology, and have a blog about construction and future plans for the facility.  But maybe that's just me.  I think that people are much more excited to continue working toward something if there is a reasonable expectation that things will get better, or improve, or be different.  The communication from leadership down to lower levels seems to not be very robust.  It is probably more of a job for the public affairs department than for me in IT.  I see the possibilities, and I think it would be so cool.  Photos do a better job of conveying progress.  It would be cool to have some sort of photo-documentary of the progress of changes.

I suppose that I've spoken with several of the members of the leadership team at the hospital about my idea, but as of yet, the idea hasn't taken off.  I was excited to see that the VA facility in Palo Alto had some pictures of construction activities over there.  The facebook page of Palo Alto's is a bit more impressive.  Maybe it's just a factor of where they are.  One would almost expect that they'd be closer to the center of what's happening, being that they are where they are.

I am happy to be doing IT support.  I recognize that there are many worse places that I could be--many worse jobs that I could be stuck doing.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

We had a good time at Orlando/Downtown Disney on Saturday

We had a good time at Orlando/Downtown Disney on Saturday. They are in the process of building two parking garages where some surface lots were. Presumably, this will add significant numbers of parking spaces to the Downtown Disney area. I'm not sure what the time table for getting those parking lots constructed is.
Splitsville, a big bowling alley, dining establishment looks like a pretty cool addition to Downtown Disney. We didn't eat there, yet, but that's okay. We've eaten enough, and we're trying to still eat less, and lose weight. I recently got a new scale. This one uses a 9 volt battery, the previous scale was using a lithium battery I guess. I'll see how it performs over a longer period.
We took the bus from one end of Downtown Disney to Old Key West, a part of the Disney Vacation Club, as near as I can figure out. From OKW, we took the water taxi back to Downtown Disney, and it was pretty cool. I liked riding the boat launch back. Pictures from the water are pretty neat.
One of the areas where I think much could be done to improve communication about what is going on at work is to introduce a blog about mostly the new construction. I work at a hospital, and there have been a number of construction projects which have been going on. I think having a blog for helping to communicate changes would be a very good thing. Many people probably wouldn't be too interested about it, but I think that if pictures of new entrance ways, and stuff were included, it could be highly beneficial.
I was encouraged that another VA facility (Palo Alto) had some pictures recently of some of the construction projects, and they shared some of those on the facebook site of that facility. I met with the hospital Director recently, and shared with her, my idea for improving communication about changes at the facility, and I was impressed that she at least got some of the ideas about a two way communication stream generally with blogs. Who knows if much will happen with my idea for improving communication at the hospital, or my idea of highlighting some of the successes we've had with helping to improve the lives of veterans. I'm sure that more could be done.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

I had a nice Google Plus hangout with a kind lady from some part of England

I had a nice Google Plus Hangout with a kind lady from England who is a carer for a stroke survivor, and the fact that she reached out to say hello was very nice in my opinion. I like the fact that the computer technology enables communication much easier. I'd like to see more being done with computer mediated communications technologies at work, with the patients, but I realize that I am just a piece of the machine.
I like what the VA at Palo Alto has done with listing construction activities on the public facing website. it looks like a pretty impressive list of construction projects going on. I guess the public affairs part is doing a pretty good job with things over there. I'd think that more could be done, indeed, being right near facebook, Apple, Google, whatever else in the Silicon Valley entails, it's sort of expected I guess. I like the freedom from discrimination that the computer mediated communications tends to afford me. I'm reasonably sure that there are probably some others who might experience a similar level of joy. Communicating via Google Plus Hangout kind of reintroduces many of the factors of slow speech which might add to possible discrimination, but whatever.
I guess I can continue to try to win friends and influence others through interaction.

Snowden gets some freedom to move around Moscow.

I guess Edward Snowden got some freedom to move around Moscow, possibly Russia. I suppose that he'll discover how the Russians deal with dissent. Maybe he could have discovered it if he paid attention to the Pussy Riot, blasphemy case. Rage against the machine indeed.
Maybe he will keep his nose clean, and he won't be messed with by the Russian spies and counter-intelligence fellows. Somehow, I tend to think that Wikileaks will be less effective in trying to protect him. Maybe he has gained an appreciation of the system he now finds himself in. Right now, the temperatures might be okay, but I'd suspect that before too long, it'll get very cold. Maybe the language will come easy for him. Maybe he will be able to go on to Venezuela.

When the power goes out

When the power goes out, life quiets down. Fortunately, the power doesn't go out too frequently around here, but still, when it does, TV stops, and most cooking stops. When power is not quickly restorable, then it starts to get uncomfortably warm here in Tampa, FL. Usually, though, the power gets restored before too long. An exception was when larger areas were down simultaneously with 3 tropical systems passing through Florida and just a lot of damage.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Weird weather

We were out, and doing a little shopping. The sky was dark and heavy with impending rain. We just stopped at 2 different stores, near the house, looking for shampoo, and Pudding. The sky flashed with lightning, and thunder rolled. We did not get wet, the rain did not fall yet. The sky is just weird.
Oh, also, there was a sinkhole in the neighborhood. There were several concrete trucks I guess pumping concrete into the sinkhole void. Who knows? But for the grace of God go I.
Thunder rolls.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Did Edward Snowden expose the cloud to be a house of cards?

Did Edward Snowden expose cloud based computing resources to be insecure? Is this part of the damage to the economic future of the Tech industry that we can heap onto Edward Snowden? Granted, some of us probably already realize that when you are trusting someone else to store photos, or whatever for you, that you are relinquishing control over that content. The Business Insider article was saying how Microsoft, Google, and Yahoo, along with other corporate entities will comply with court orders and hand over data. Trade secrets aren't really safe when they are stored out in the cloud. Outsourcing e-mail management responsibilities to other big tech companies isn't attractive when one thinks in those terms.
I've known this, but hey, data is data.
The angle of Edward Snowden the whistle-blower doesn't work. He failed to keep secrets. I'm sure that there was a document that he signed that said he would keep secrets. Maybe he could try the line of reasoning that nobody really reads the terms of service for all of the cloud storage services offered, anyway, but that doesn't really fly when he is in Hong Kong, and then in the airport, and possibly in Moscow. Maybe the American will get an appreciation of Russian Justice. Maybe he will manage to live a long and productive life.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

I don't understand

I don't understand why almost half of our elected representatives would vote to limit the access that our military (the NSA) has to signals intelligence. Sure, okay, I can sort of see why a 29 year old might be deluded into thinking that he has a patriotic duty to report our capabilities to the world. I guess the youngster didn't make it through basic training, so he might not have fully grasped the importance of following orders.
Sure, maybe they knew that the votes weren't there to have funding pulled back, or whatever limiting mechanism was proposed, but when we were involved in our most recent hot wars, there were sayings that loose lips sink ships. Demanding greater congressional oversight, and approval of operational controls, is dangerous to my way of thinking. The NSA is mostly a military organization, from what I understand. I don't know how deeply intertwined the FBI is with the SIG INT capabilities of the NSA, but I'd suspect that there is considerable separation between organizations.
The US intelligence agencies are good at making use of technology to intercept those who wish to do harm to our country.
A seperate issue is how much of the future work can be done by outside contractors, versus by military folks. It probably won't be implemented immediately, but this could reverse some trends toward more contractors providing for the military. It might cause harm to the non-military employment scenarios imagined in the future, but then again, maybe not.

Observing people

Watching people can be slightly humorous. Last night, we were planning to maybe go to the Dallas Bull, for a country concert, which would have yielded some interesting sights, but instead, we went to watch people at Bay Street (International Plaza's outside area where there are some bars, and other establishments.
I commented to my wife that I don't really get the desire to wear high heels by women. I guess sure, being a few inches taller might help some women to stand taller and (at least in their own perception) make them more attractive than other women out there. I am not sure why women dress up to try to snag a guy at a bar. I guess it works some of the times. Women feel better about themselves when they dress up, I suppose. I really don't get why women wear uncomfortable shoes. It was interesting watching some women who had trouble walking in the high heels.
Maybe women who are dressed up fancy tend to get hit on more, and maybe get drinks bought for them by guys who are trying to express interest in their stories, and if the chemistry is right, things might progress.
We went to Silver Springs in Ocala this morning, and then back to International Plaza where I tried to get my ipod touch looked at/swapped out. An apple sales person took me over to a computer to set up an appointment at the genius bar. There was no appointment available today, she gave me a calling card, with a URL on it, so I could set up an appointment later.
I also took the device to ihospital, and asked if the guy there was aware up the vertical line problem on the 5th generation ipod touch, and he indicated that yes, he wazs aware of it, and that I should take the device to the apple store, and they will probably swap it out, since it was bought within the last year (actually, the warranty expires in January of 2014). I saw where some other people were complaining about vertical lines on the 5th generation ipod touch devices. The ihospital guy looked up the serial number from a apple database. I like the macbook pro. I thought the ipod touch 5th generation was just a bad gadget. I may try to get a different device, and see if I can use it better, without the vertical lines.
My wife got some starters from Williams-Sonoma. We just had the French Onion Soup, and while it was pretty expensive, relative to other costs, it was most likely not as expensive as a night at a fancy steak house. The French Onion Soup was very good.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

An outsider's understanding.

As a federal government employee, I want to note that I am not a veteran. I have not fought in wars. The CIA, as I understand things is mostly concerned about laws being broken outside of the United States (affecting the United States). The FBI is concerned about laws being broken inside of the United States. The NSA is not law enforcement. It is military.
Repeat. It is Military. Cyber command. Signals Intelligence.
Maybe that is why they get touchy about exposing secrets.
Providing aid and comfort to the enemy.
Our Department of Defense is a large organization, with many enlisted, and many officers. Some civilians, and some contract employees. There may be changes implemented re: the access to information that some employees will have.
Once Mister Snowden gets institutionalized, likely, worse things could happen to him.
Maybe he will find warmth in Russia. Likely, he may find that the justice systems can be harsh in Russia.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Glenn Greenwald & Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden book: It was only a matter of time. Glenn Greenwald, the investigative reporter who broke the story of the government's surveillance on everyday citizens, is writing a book about notorious leaker Edward Snowden. The book, as yet untitled, will be published in March 2014 by Metropolitan.
Wasn't it Glenn Greenwald who wanted the debate to be about the content of the leaks, rather than the leaker himself? I think the fact that governments spy on their own populations is really a not-a-big-deal type of story. "Dog bites man!" I mean it's what dogs do if provoked.
Edward Snowden probably made things more difficult for people in the future. The law of unintended consequences. There may be less information sharing. But that could have happened even without Edward Snowden. People in power like to have control of their power. This phenomena happens at many places. I guess Edward Snowden being a younger person did not realize this. I hope that he has an enjoyable time in whatever country he ends up at. It would be nice if he had an understanding of the global situation, but I suspect that he might not.
Maybe Russia will quickly get him out of the country. Maybe his language skills are superb. I'd suspect that he probably does not have that much experience with languages, but I could be wrong. Maybe he will learn.
If the Intelligence Community really was concerned about stopping the leaks, it'd seem to me that there are ways to discourage publication. Money is a motivator for many.
I don't know about the Russian criminal elements. I'd suspect they might be curious.
Glenn Greenwald probably might have a better understanding of how the world works.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

grinding teeth (bruxism)

I suppose that the teeth clenching and grinding is related to the traumatic brain injury (TBI) in some manner. I've seen it referred to as bruxism in some dental stuff. A few dental hygenists have been impressed that I am a bruxer. I don't think it's too interesting. I don't know how common of a problem bruxism is, there probably are some places where I can find out more, but I'm not concerned. There are other thins which need to be more immediate. The TBI has limitations. I am happy that I have a job. I like that I am moderately successful. Yes, I think it would be cooler if there were more development done with the idea of computer mediated communication and the VA / veteran patients, but most large organizations probably have forces which keep them doing things the way they have wanted them to be done, and introducing change likely will take time. I'm not positive that there are large numbers of people who would benefit from greater access to computer mediated communications technology, but it seems to me to be a no-brainer type of idea. Obvious on its face. It will probably enhance patient satisfaction. Perhaps bruxism is a longer term issue in some people with TBI. But by the same token, some people's problems are more pressing in other areas.

I am reminded of the fragility of life's systems

On days such as this, I am reminded that many of our systems are inherently fragile. Well, not fragile in and of themselves, but given enough time and wear, even teeth eventually need replacement, or augmentation. In my case, I guess it will likely involve placing crowns on all of my teeth. The root structures appear to be healthy enough, from what I know. Panoramic X-rays images done at two separate prosthedontist's offices which the dental insurance appears not to want to cover. I realize that going to different dentists offices requires different images to be taken. I was bummed that the first prosthedontist office wasn't an in-network provider. I was referred by a separate dentist who I went to for a second opinion. The second prosthedontist was in network, but his X-rays were also not covered. The initial dentist's office (a coast dental location in a rented space in a strip center) I went to had x-rays on films, and I much prefer the cool digital X-rays, displayable on a computer screen. Of course, technology probably is not free. I went to an endodontic specialist for a root canal, and saw the fancy digital X-rays. Having the ability to zoom in on a tooth, and the root structure was pretty cool. The in-network prosthedontist is located a few miles away from the house, so I need to get transportation (wife to drive me there). The insurance company hasn't yet agreed to pre-authorize procedures done. But who really knows how things will shake out? Eventually, Snowden will probably need healthcare, and dental work. If he is fortunate to live to a ripe old age.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

I'm not one to speak ill of the dead

The Trayvon thing doesn't really impact me much.  Sure, I agree that the boy shouldn't have been shot.  It seems that he didn't have very good impulse control mechanisms in place if he wanted to beat up Zimmerman.  According to some of the stuff I read, someone thought Mister Zimmerman was a homosexual, and Trayvon was expressing his displeasure with that particular lifestyle choice.  Leaving the whole issue aside, beating up another shows a lack of peaceful thoughts.  I asked a few of my co-workers what they thought, and they seemed pretty consistant, "It is sad, but I won't be acting the fool, and taking part in any sort of riots or any of that."  My co-workers have jobs.

Snowden seems to be making an entirely different bed.  It seems that his former life of internet freedom will soon be replaced by one of decidedly less internet connectivity.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Custom wheels

What is the deal with people getting custom wheels, usually jacking up the vehicles, so that they can put significantly larger wheels on the vehicles? Is there a reason why people like to ride around in larger wheeled vehicles?

Lost in Yonkers

Yesterday, we saw a play Lost in Yonkers, by Neil Simon. The play was about a family that was kind of messed up. The mother had passed away from cancer, the father/husband went away to work, leaving his two boys with his mother and aunt. I guess the boys were the main characters. The play was very good in my opinion. The actors were quite well in the roles. This was at the Carrolwood Players' Theatre, a small venue off of Gunn Highway (Busch Boulevard west of Dale Mabry Highway). I enjoy going to see the plays. I guess there were 8 scenes, separated in two acts. It was nearly 3 hours long. 15 minute intermission.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Trying to manage weight loss

Well, I suppose that I've had a tool in place to assist with the weight loss routine. The lap band has been helpful, but I think it might be slightly too tight. I may see if the doctor will remove a small portion of the saline that is is in the band to allow slightly more food to be eaten, to pass through my smaller stomach pouch slightly easier. I REALLY REALLY like the meatloaf and mashed potatoes that my wife makes. The 10 ounce tubbies with screw on lids have been phenomenal in helping to control portion sizes. I had a co-worker ask me about the lap band, and I was upfront with him. I hope that if he chooses to do it, it will work out relatively well for him. Avoiding diabetes, and the compounding health problems that it causes is a big factor. The chewable vitamins for bariatric surgery ar pretty good. Mostly it's supplemental vitamins, and then a big b-12. I guess it's better in an easier form for absortion. The b-12 was important. I had been told by my doctor that I should take a b-12 supplement. It did improve my mood, and help me see things in a more positive manner. Maybe I saw more options, more ways that I could influence things around me. Of course, this is also impacted by my traumatic brain injury issues which still probably affect some stuff even today, and also important to deal with is my teeth issues. The teeth will be expensive to have crowns placed on them, but eventually, I should have a newer better smile. More importantly, I should be able to continue with my chewing, and eating for some time into the future. The prosthedontist's office had some pretty cool x-rays and computer displays displaying basically health root structures for my teeth.

Saturday, July 6, 2013


“I don’t understand what he was thinking,” she said. “Is he a little boy with no idea about the consequences?”
The above quote comes to us from:
I wonder how he keeps his precious laptops secure for days on end. I wonder where Miss Harrison is at? Wikileaks is the one who seems to want the spotlight.
I doubt Snowden plays chess.
For that matter, I'm not sure that Assange plays chess.
Maybe Mister Assange in fact does play chess, now that he is at the Equadorian Embassy in London. Or, maybe not.
I'd think that the Russian Security folks should know where he is. If in fact, he is still in the transit zone. Did Miss Harrison continue on with her travels?
Is she located at some wikileaks underground bunker? I doubt it.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Jobs numbers in the US

I suppose it is good that the jobs numbers are picking up. It would perhaps be better if there weren't as many part time employed people, who state that they would prefer full time work, but it is what it is. I guess some businesses might be a little bit concerned about adding full time employees, with the impacts of Obamacare, or whatever. I really don't think that it should be of much concern, but the fact that the federal government is paying contractors to do jobs that federal employees used to do, or perhaps more to the point, paying people more than federal employees, but also not contributing to benefits, time off, etcetera, and presumably allowing the contractors to try picking up health coverage on their own, or whatever. In speaking with a former contractor, he said that yes, the individual rate of reimbursement was higher, but there was no paid time off, no medical, no dental, no retirement system. Maybe the contracting agency might be able to set up something, but I doubt it. The federal government probably likes the fact that they don't have to pay for all of the costs associated with providing benefits, and the contracting agency probably makes some money by providing people with certain skill sets who are able to do certain jobs. The former contractor tells me that he was just an hourly employee, when he was a contractor, I suppose that Mister Snowden was also an hourly employee, working for the NSA.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Back from Highlands, NC

I'm back in Tampa, after having spent a few days visiting my parents in Highlands, NC. I'm ready to go back to work tomorrow, and feed my co-worker's fish. I suppose that I'll be one of a few people at work tomorrow, but who knows? I had a good time with my parents and my wife. On the linked-in network, I've discovered a number of other people who I've sent inquiries to. I'll see how readily it translates into an expanded network of contacts as relates to my desire to share some experiences and wisdom gained or just evidence that recovery from a moderately catastrophic injury is possible.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Indian notion of time

Part of what is interesting about the Indian understanding of time is that it doesn't exist separately from other units. I am not even sure that it makes sense, but that was part of what I took away while listening to the guy from mountain stewards yesterday. The fact that everything is sacred is also interesting.

Buddy the Buddy Holly story

Last night, we went to go see the play Buddy, the Buddy Holly story. I was impressed with the story. I did not realize that his career. Only lasted 18 months. Much of what I know of the story is encapsulated in the song American Pie by Don McLean. "I can't remember if I cried when I read about his widowed bride."

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Laser Spectacular: The music of Pink Floyd at the Mahaffey Theater

Last night we went to Downtown Saint Petersburg for an evening of music. We went and picked up our tickets early for the show Laser Spectacular: the music of Pink Floyd at the Mahaffey Theater. They sold us special glasses which I guess refracted light a little bit differently, and enhanced the laser show. My eyes were dry, so I put drops in my eyes. I carry around the little bottle of refresh liquigel lubricant eyedrops, since having the lasik surgery. I haven't had to use the eyedrops for awhile, but I guess that the laser show might have been a bit much. Maybe the strobe lights, or the fog, or other causes exacerbated the issue. The music was pretty good. We only stayed for the first half. it was tiring. But it was fun. We enjoyed the time there. As we left, many people were outside taking a smoke break. And potty break, and buying beverages. Earlier, we walked to Kilwin's for some ice cream milk shakes. It was a good time.

Friday, June 21, 2013

A play Live Theater "Distorted Love"

We went and saw a play called "Distorted Love" tonight at a strip center in Temple Terrace, the play was very good, about generational dynamics. Maybe it wasn't totally realistic, but it touched upon similar themes which result in generational conflict. Toward the end, a statement was made that we should never let pride get in the way, for we are really only given today, tomorrow is not a certainty. We had a great time. The play had three actresses. We drove by the place about 3 times before stopping at the place. It didn't appear to be what I'd think of as a big enough of a location, but there was maybe room for about 20 - 30 people not including the cast or crew for the play.
I guess since they are hoping to eventually find a bigger location, and involve more young people in production of plays and whatnot, it is a good thing, but who knows how successful they will ultimately be.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

dental (at the prosthedontist's office)

Yippie. Well, I got a second opinion on what needed to be done with my mouth. Really, a fourth opinion, this was the second prosthedontist. This guy is a preferred provider with my dental plan, so there is a projected savings due to negotiated fee schedule agreements. I suppose it is good that my roots and related structures appear to be good on the panoramic x-rays. The TMJ appears to be good. The solution proposed was slightly more involved than the lesser involved solution put forward by the other prosthedontist, in fact, crown lengthening everywhere means that it may be more expensive, but due to the dental plan, it might be the option that I'll go with. This guy will try to get the preauthorization from the insurance company, and when that happens, they will call me back and try scheduling some stuff. I hope that some stuff will be covered. Maybe this will be better as far as keeping my teeth longer. Grinding teeth at night, or whatever I guess causes problems with the teeth. The dental hygenists have been somewhat taken aback by my complex mouth. The dentists might see new wheels for their vehicles, or other options. The prosthedontists might see more options on how they can help improve smiles. I tried to impart that I'm not concerned about the smile. The functionality of my teeth, as far as chewing was what I was most concerned about.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Waiting on the Air Conditioning repair guy

Waiting on the Air Conditioning repair guy can be a long process. The good thing was that it was only a capacitor which needed to be replaced. I act like I know what I'm talking about. I just know that it is what they check when they come out and check our A/C unit. They were last out to check the status in April. They usually try to get me to invest in a biocide ultra-violet light system for disinfecting the air handling unit. This guy came out and tested our capacitor, and sure enough, the capacitor didn't have enough of a charge for the condenser unit outside. A different A/C repair guy (with the same company) came out last night, and he just pulled the fuse and reset it, and it started back up, but then sometime over the night, it went out again, so we called the company up again. Another $124 or so. I am happy that I get paid well enough doing what I pretty much enjoy.

living with TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury)

I have a right frontal Traumatic Brain Injury. When I was eleven, I was struck by a car, life flighted to Norfolk General, transferred to the Children's Hospital of the Kings' Daughters, discharged, brought home, recovered, progressed through education. I earned a Master's Degree in Library Science, I got hired at a VA Hospital. I was touching computers, and was offered a full time permanent position in the computer section.
Most of the time, the deficits are not too pronounced. Sure, I speak somewhat slower than the national average, and I walk with a limp, and my left side is not as used as much is my dominant right side. My left arm/hand used to be curled up and atrophied at my side. Now, it is significantly better.
I suppose I am a testament to the fact that recovery after a traumatic brain injury (TBI) can continue to progress. For me, education seemed to be a way to get a good job.
With Traumatic Brain Injury being more recognized as a serious event in the lives of so many, it is important to acknowledge that life goes on. Recovery is possible.

Snowden is not a whistleblower

Snowden is not a whistleblower. As a contract employee, Snowden has (had) limited protections. His employer Booz Allen Hamilton, terminated his employment. The intelligence agencies, by using the contracts can pay other people to handle personnel matters.
The process of whistleblowing is trying to work within the system.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

intel outsourcing

growth in intel outsourcing has been long process
I suppose that people aren't eager to bring many new people on the government roles of employees. Not paying for benefits and pension and retirement has advantages, but it decreases loyalty. The mantra of smaller government is appealing, but there are risks.

MSFT stores to share locations with best buy (mini stores)

MSFT mini stores to pop up in 500 best buy locations
Perhaps the microsoft stores will help to sell the consumers on the need for more robust computing power than most people can achieve with iphones, and various other cell phone manufacturers' products. Maybe with the Nokia Lumia phones, there will be more advancements.

OK, this might make more sense

NSA and MSFT supposedly cozy
If Skype is compromised, or any of the peer to peer programs, then sure those people who buy systems with programs loaded, such as skype, they might be more available. Yes it is possible to use some pretty effective encryption, but then communications need to be encrypted. I'm not a conspiracy nut. I don't think the NSA wants to divulge too much. It will be sad if there will be another attack of similar scale as 9/11/01 due to revelations made by Snowden.


I don't know why someone would choose to try upsetting the US Intelligence Community by making up stuff, even if there are parts of what is claimed are truthful, there seems to be parts which are beyond present capabilities. Maybe some capabilities are mischaracterized by Snowden, maybe misreported by the reporters involved. Potentially, dumbed down by editors to make a complex process understandable to an average person. In any event, it would seem to me that the individual reporters should not be gone after for damaging the reputation of the United States Information Infrastructure. Maybe if the publishers, or the money behind the organizations were to be sought to make some sort of restitution for damage done to commercial interests, things might happen. The possible misunderstanding might be in words used by editors "direct server level access" which to IT security minded individuals can mean different things, perhaps than to editors.
Litigation is a not very productive way to move forward.


Iran elections
I for one am pleased to see that the Iranian People have chosen a somewhat moderate who promises to be more open to reform measures. It would be nice if the Iranian people were able to re-engage with the western world, and participate without external forces acting. It remains to be seen just how fast some reforms can be put into place, and how much centralized control the Supreme Leader is willing to release. If this leads to more stability, it could be a very good thing, but there are probably many ways things might have a way of falling apart.

Fwd: monk

A monk prays for an elderly man who had died suddenly while waiting for a train in Shanxi Taiyuan, China

Fwd: A culture and what it produces is made possible and is reflective of the knowledge that underlies it.

A culture and what it produces is made possible and is reflective of the knowledge that underlies it.

Fwd: kung fu fighting


Photograph by China Foto Press 

Sunday, June 9, 2013

OK, back at my macbook pro.

The laid back features of the kindle fire has benefits, the small form factor is cool, the relaxed multi-tasking is pretty awesome, but the limitations are significant. I'm as good as the next person with trying to share things, and it is good, but I find that for being serious, a "real" computer just can't be replaced, having the mouse is important, the keyboard is also high up there. I want to share: is a cool little thing which I've been working on in sort of a separate path from the google plus activities. I was pleasantly surprised when I found that google plus is bringing the plus experience closer to the blogger properties.

Well, got a kindle fire, it is nice.

The little tablet in the horizontal position is comfortable to type on, while sitting in the recliner. I am not all that sure about using this as a platform, compared with my WordPress account which tends to be more focused onrecovering and enjoying the processes of living.
Hmmmm... I am uncertain how much interaction I will get from this, or other means of social media... It is interesting to consider how much I have enjoyed connecting with some very cool people through Facebook, but there are potentially more cool people here using GOOGLE plus.