Sunday, August 30, 2015

Armed Drones Legal in North Dakota: UND Drone Studies Program

North Dakota legalized drones with  non-lethal weapons for law enforcement. See more info. below:

Via the
First State Legalizes Armed Drones for Cops, Thanks to a Lobbyist
North Dakota police will be free to fire Tasers or tear gas from the air thanks to the influence of Big Drone.

It is now legal for law enforcement in North Dakota to fly drones armed with everything from Tasers to tear gas thanks to a last-minute push by a pro-police lobbyist.

With all the concern over the militarization of police in the past year, no one noticed that the state became the first in the Union to allow police to equip drones with “less than lethal” weapons. House Bill 1328 wasn’t drafted that way, but then a lobbyist representing law enforcement—tight with a booming drone industry—got his hands on it.

Cleared for take-off: Pilot finds second career as author - Tulsa World: Whatareyou

Cleared for take-off: Pilot finds second career as author - Tulsa World: Whatareyou

What Are You?

From Tulsa World:
Erin Chappel logged 20 years in her former profession. Then came what she described as the “dark days.”

Chappel said she was lost after retiring, or at least as lost as you can get in a pumpkin aisle.

“I would be, like, in Hobby Lobby every day checking out the pumpkins, trying to figure out what the heck to do with myself,” she said.

“After a long stint of that, my husband said, ‘You know what, I think you are depressed, and you need to figure out what is going on.’ At that very moment, I knew that I needed to do something different.”

How to Cook Duck: Taste of Atlanta

Description via youtube:Scott Leysath from The Sporting Chef is back from the Taste of Atlanta with a scrumptious recipe for cooking up one of his favorite game to hunt, duck.

I am going to follow this recipe for the upcoming duck hunting season.   I hope the duck hunting is good this fall.

Writer Clay McLeod Chapman: Tom Robbins Description

Clay McLeod Chapman

Text is Tom Robbins:  Clay McLeod Chapman "Like a demonic angel on a skateboard, like a resurrected Artaud on methadrine, like a tattletale psychiatrist turned rodeo clown, Clay McLeod Chapman races back and forth along the serrated edges of everyday American madness, objectively recording each whimper of anguish, each whisper of skewed desire. This is strong stuff, intense stuff, sometimes disturbing stuff, but I think the many who admire Chuck Palahniuk will admire Chapman as well."—Tom Robbins, author, Still Life with Woodpecker

Check out more information about his author at his website:

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Steve Rinella hunts Javelina: Meateater Video

Video Description: Steve Rinella heads to west Texas to hunt Javelina. By utilizing his stalking skills, Steve hopes to arrow one of these cunning creatures.

Steven Rinella

Info. from his website:
Steven Rinella is an avid outdoorsman and author of The Scavenger’s Guide to Haute Cuisine; American Buffalo: In Search of a Lost Icon; Meat Eater: Adventures from the Life of an American Hunter, and the forthcoming two-volume series The Complete Guide to Hunting, Butchering, and Cooking Wild Game. His titles have been awarded the Sigurd F. Olson Nature Writing Award and the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award, and American Buffalo was named one of the best fifty non-fiction books of 2008 by the San Francisco Chronicle. Rinella's writing has also appeared in a wide variety of popular publications, including Glamour, Men’s Journal, Outside, New Yorker, the New York Times,, O the Oprah Magazine, Field and Stream, and the annual anthologies Best American Travel Writing (2003, 2010, 2014) and Best Food Writing (2005, 2013). He is a frequent guest on radio and TV news programs and has appeared on CNN’s American Morning, Fox and Friends, and the NPR programs All Things Considered and Weekend Edition, where he discusses the hunting lifestyle. In 2011, Rinella hosted The Wild Within on Travel Channel. MeatEater premiered the next year on Sportsman Channel and is now in its sixth season. Rinella also hosts the MeatEater Podcast.

University of Phoenix Now Accepting ACT National Career Readiness Certificate for Elective Course... | Business Wire

University of Phoenix Now Accepting ACT National Career Readiness Certificate for Elective Course... | Business Wire

Info. from the site:

University of Phoenix Now Accepting ACT National Career Readiness Certificate for Elective Course Credits

ACT NCRC can help document students’ workplace skills and accelerate student progress
June 01, 2015 09:09 AM Eastern Daylight Time

PHOENIX--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, University of Phoenix announced it will accept the ACT National Career Readiness Certificate (ACT NCRC) for up to three credits towards elective courses in select University undergraduate degree programs. The initiative is part of the University’s commitment to aligning degree programs with industry standards, and helping students more quickly and affordably achieve their education goals based on their relevant experience.

“The collaboration between University of Phoenix and ACT contributes to our deep understanding of the needs of working adult students and employers”

Cleveland County Initiative: Become a Certified Work Ready Community

Cleveland County, North Carolina has decided to invest in their workforce.   I recently visited some small towns in North Carolina, and overall, I was impressed with the strength of their locals businesses.

I have included some information below on a new program in Cleveland County:

Info. and text from the Shelby Star:

Cleveland County Initiative: Become a Certified Work Ready Community

North Carolina has launched a statewide initiative to endorse communities and counties as NCWorks Certified Work Ready Communities.
Officials from Cleveland Community College, along with other local agencies, are working to obtain the designation.
“Currently there are only two certified counties in North Carolina,” said Ken Mooney, vice president of continuing education at Cleveland Community College. “I think if we get our business community behind this effort, Cleveland County can be one of the next counties in the state to receive this important recognition and designation.”

Community Colleges Outperforming 4-year Universities

Community Colleges Outperforming 4-year Universities  A study from 2015 comparing CC's to 4 year colleges.

Excerpt from the article:

According to several recent studies, students attending community colleges often participate in classroom discussion and experience one-on-one interaction with professors at a much higher rate than university students. Since the student-to-faculty ratio at most community colleges is lower than at most four-year colleges and universities, community college students often spend more time working directly with their professors. In fact, due to the large class sizes at four-year higher education institutions, there are not nearly as many opportunities for students to work directly with or even interact with their professors.

In large public universities, in particular, it is not uncommon for classes to be held in large auditoriums where one professor may lecture several hundred students at a time. Consequently, some university students tend to feel that they’re never able develop a personal relationship with their professor.

In addition, survey results indicate that students at community colleges tend to receive direct feedback from professors at a much higher rate than students attending four-year institutions.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Video and Link to Interview: Tattoo Artist Mike Giant

Interview w/ Mike Giant

Giant's words on the show: I started to look at modern tattoo designs as well as corporate and band logos as "modern hieroglyphics". I thought a lot about how the symbols of our time would be objectively translated by future generations. And instead of trying to explain it, I made drawings to codify the symbolic language of our time for future observers to translate for themselves. -Mike Giant

Interview at Denver's 1 of 1 Magazine: Mike Giant

Mike Giant is a tattoo artist and skateboarder working and living in Boulder, Colorado.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Evolution of Semi Trucks: Cabover, Conventional, and Futuristic Rigs

Cabover Peterbilt Show Truck
Cabovers were a common site in the 1980's and the beginning of the 1990's.  They have mostly disappeared, but a few truckers still prefer to drive flat noses and fix them up as working trucks or show trucks.   One of the first trucks I ever rode in was a cabover grain hauler that was heading to Duluth, MN.

Class Peterbilt 359

The long nosed Peterbilt conventional with a sixty inch sleeper will be a mainstay in my imagination of what a true truck should look like.   I really like the way these trucks look with the angry nose and beautiful grill leading the way.

Walmart's Futuristic Truck

This is a Jetson's looking truck model that may be the future of trucking but I still prefer the big iron from the good old days.   This thing looks lightweight and built of plastic.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Jim Croce - Greatest Hits - Operator (That's Not The Way It Feels) Video and Lyrics


Operator, well could you help me place this call?
See, the number on the matchbook is old and faded
She's living in L.A. with my best old ex-friend Ray
A guy she said she knew well and sometimes hated

Isn't that the way they say it goes? Well, let's forget all that
And give me the number if you can find it
So I can call just to tell 'em I'm fine and to show
I've overcome the blow, I've learned to take it well
I only wish my words could just convince myself
That it just wasn't real, but that's not the way it feels

Operator, well could you help me place this call?
Well, I can't read the number that you just gave me
There's something in my eyes, you know it happens every time
I think about a love that I thought would save me

Isn't that the way they say it goes? Well, let's forget all that
And give me the number if you can find it
So I can call just to tell 'em I'm fine and to show
I've overcome the blow, I've learned to take it well
I only wish my words could just convince myself
That it just wasn't real, but that's not the way it feels
No, no, no, no - that's not the way it feels

Operator, well let's forget about this call
There's no one there I really wanted to talk to
Thank you for your time, ah, you've been so much more than kind
And you can keep the dime

Isn't that the way they say it goes? Well, let's forget all that
And give me the number if you can find it
So I can call just to tell 'em I'm fine and to show
I've overcome the blow, I've learned to take it well
I only wish my words could just convince myself
That it just wasn't real, but that's not the way it feels

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Life in the cash economy for “underbanked” Americans: Check Cashing Services: PBS Video

Life in the cash economy for “underbanked” Americans

Nearly 20% of low income US households are "underbanked," according to the FDIC. But is providing access to traditional, mainstream financial services the best solution for everyone? A professor does double duty as a New York City check casher and discovers that banks might not be the best choice for everyone.

Fat-burning butter coffee finds a following at Undisputed Fitness - The Santa Fe New Mexican: Taste

Fat-burning butter coffee finds a following at Undisputed Fitness - The Santa Fe New Mexican: Taste

I need to get some of this stuff!   Sounds like a great way to stay caffeinated and lose weight.

Why are People Drinking Butter Coffee Video

Excerpt from the article by Tantri Wija:

Butter coffee goes by various names: Paleo coffee, primal coffee or Bulletproof coffee. Fletcher’s coffee company is called Caveman Coffee, which he owns with UFC fighter Keith Jardine and L.A.-based fitness trainer Lacie Mackey. Fletcher, a graduate of St. John’s College in Santa Fe, talks about health and nutrition with more nuance and thoughtfulness (and F-bombs) than your doctor probably does.

Fletcher prepares his brew by combining hot coffee with a tablespoon-ish of butter and a splash of MCT oil (medium chain trigylceride) in a blender. The whipped result is frothy, mild and surprisingly light in texture. He never bothers to actually weigh the ingredients, but he estimates that the proportions come out to about a tablespoon each of butter and MCT oil per cup.

MCT oil, Fletcher explains, is derived from either palm or coconut oil. Without getting too technical, he says MCT is a kind of large molecule oil that was once vilified by the medical establishment, but which is now considered to be a healthful fat. Caveman Coffee derives its MCT from coconut oil.

“Coconut oil has a molecular structure that’s thick and will harden at room temperature,” Fletcher says. “MCT oil has a smaller molecular structure, it can be assimilated by the body easier, and it stays a liquid, is more bioavailable. Ours also has boric acid in it, which is one of the larger molecular chains in coconut oil that often in MCT gets filtered out because of its size.”

The oil, whichever you use, is combined with grass-fed butter (generally Kerrygold brand, but Fletcher uses goat butter) in a blender and emulsified into a creamy texture. It can be served hot or cold over ice, although when drinking it cold, Fletcher suggests to finish it before the butter begins to solidify.

Social Selling: 1 in 4 Sales Professionals Know How to Use Social Media To Sell


Written by Emma Snider

Despite the hype in the sales space about social selling, adoption numbers remain fairly low. A new survey from PeopleLinx reveals that a scant 31% of reps incorporate social media into their sales process.

However, the lack of social selling adoption isn't due to a lack of interest or perceived value. It's just that reps don't know how to do it. Only 26% of respondents felt as if they knew how to use social media to sell.

Surprising? Not to Gorka Amian, business intelligence manager at PeopleLinx.

"This makes sense -- at least to me. A lot of the salespeople I meet tell me (usually in hushed, guilty tones) that they don’t understand Twitter, LinkedIn, and sometimes even Facebook," he wrote in a blog post. "They know social technologies are valuable. They feel they should be doing more to cultivate relationships with buyers. But … they’re clueless."

 My take:

Some of the tactics I have used in terms of social media and selling include:

  • Buying and posting items on Craiglist
  • Sharing items I have for sale on Facebook
  • Using Twitter to announce items for sale or special savings

Monday, August 17, 2015

Larry Brown's Writing Shack in Tula, Mississippi

I have been a fan of Larry Brown's writing for a long time.  I recently found some pictures of his writing shack.   Larry Brown built the tiny cabin on land, and documented the project in his book entitled: "Billy Ray's Farm".

It is a very well written nonfiction account of Larry's life.  He passed away at way too early of an age, but I still feel like his legacy lives on in his words.
This spot and the tiny cabin look like the perfect place to get away from it all, and for writing and reflecting.

Star Wars AT-AT Walker

I remember these things.  Some kids even had the toy version of this...

10 Ways to Harness Fear and Fuel Your Writing: My favorite writing prompts

10 Ways to Harness Fear and Fuel Your Writing |

Check out the link above for more information.

Here is a list of topics I find helpful to fuel my writing:

Anything with wheels

Anything that rolls




Hunting, Fishing, Trapping

Deep South

Far North

Crazy Accents

Larry Brown - A fine line and "Conversations with Larry Brown" Book

The author's thoughts on writing honestly.

One of things my students and I have noticed most about his interviews would have to be the accent. Every time I hear Larry Brown it makes me wish I could have bought the dude a beer or two when he was still alive.   I have revisited much of his writing, and even purchased a book that has all of his interviews compiled into one volume:

"Conversations with Larry Brown"   Click the link to go to Amazon and have a look inside.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Five Reasons Homeschoolers Choose Write At Home

Teaching Writing at Home:

Info via

If you're wondering if WriteAtHome might be a good fit for your family, here are five of the most common reasons homeschoolers turn to WriteAtHome for help with writing skills.
1. I was never very good at writing.

We all have our areas of strength and weakness. Some people are more math and science-oriented and lack confidence in writing and the language arts. WriteAtHome is a great way to enlist some help from those with gifts and talents different from yours. Our writing coaches are exceptionally good at writing and developing young writers. Let us fill in the gaps!
2. I am a naturally good writer, but I don't know how to teach it to my kids.

It may surprise you how many moms who use WriteAtHome are themselves talented writers. But many have found that writing skill is intuitive and therefore hard to explain to those who struggle with it. When moms who find writing natural and easy encounter a child--a very normal child, mind you--who finds it alien and difficult, they come to us for help.

Lots of homeschooling moms figure out that just because you are a good writer doesn't mean you are a good writing teacher.
3. I can teach writing just fine, but it often results in conflict.

Writing is unavoidably subjective, and that makes evaluation difficult. Kids tend to think mom or dad is just picking on them. There's no clear right and wrong, so criticism always seems to be a debatable matter of opinion. As a result, it's all too common for children to resent correction coming from their parents. What's funny is that they are often willing to hear the exact same criticisms from a total stranger.

With WriteAtHome, you don't have to be the bad guy anymore. Our gracious, patient writing coaches will do all the paper grading for you, letting you focus on the role of encouraging, supportive parent. We'll do the coaching, you can be the cheerleader.
4. I feel like I've done all I can. I'd like some input from someone else.

Many homeschooling families come to us because they feel like they have reached the end of their knowledge of the subject. Our coaches are eager to take the baton and help students grow their writing skills still further. Because there is a subjective element to writing, some parents realize that input from a third party can be valuable. We all have our preferences and peeves. It's unquestionably good to have a variety of perspectives on a student's writing.
5. Our intentions are good, but we just don't do enough writing.

We hear this all the time. Life gets busy. Schedules get crazy. Good intentions and idealistic plans to work on writing fade into memories as the school year wears on. WriteAtHome provides needed structure and weekly due dates to keep students on task and consistently working on their writing. We all understand that writing skills don't come magically or instantaneously. They come through regular practice. WriteAtHome provides opportunity for that kind of consistent practice.

We know WriteAtHome isn't for everyone, but we are the choice of thousands of homeschoolers each year. If you are still making plans for the upcoming school year, click the link below and take a moment to check out what WriteAtHome has to offer.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Owner Operator Interview - R.M. (Bob) Spooner

1961 Peterbilt and Owner Operator Interview with R. M Spooner.   Mr. Spooner bought this truck new, and has been running it across the United States for a long time.  This is a great interview by Big Rig Videos.  I am a fan of their videos, as the interviewer does a great job at asking questions that are meaningful and finding good representatives of the trucking lifestyle.
More interviews should be done with Mr. Spooner, as he has a great deal of experience and expertise that could be very helpful to future and present drivers.   Spooner is a true professional and his demeanor is calm and filled with confidence and optimism.  Check out his interview and stay safe out on the road.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Long Haul Lifestyle - Twitter Dee, Twitter Dum

In this Vlog, Joe goes from Portage, WI to NW Minnesota. He pulls a flatbed and ends up finding places to stop and answer viewers questions along the way.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

just some days at the office

panick at 3:00

Cutting a Lodged Tree

My Next Move: Free Online Career Assessment Links and Video

The interest profile assessment is seventy questions long, and it gives you a good overview of your strengths.  It is important to take your time and think about each question thoroughly.  While assessments can be a great tool in career research, it is also important to think about your personal strengths and goals. Job Center
"I want every American looking for work to have the same opportunity...have one program, one website, and one place to go for all the information and help that they need. It is time to turn our unemployment system into a reemployment system that puts people to work." President Obama

Tell us what you like to do.
Answer questions about the type of work you might enjoy. We'll suggest careers that match your interests and training.

08-03-15 Spike's Back: Allie Knight Trucking Video

Follow female trucker Allie Knight as she leaves home in her gold Freightliner named Frank, and now she has her trucking companion Spike the cat back in the passenger seat.  She has been delivering quite a few different types of loads, and in this episode she is delivering some tractors that were picked up in Kansas. I enjoy watching her traveling vlogs and learning more about the trucking industry.  Check out her new website: