Friday, June 12, 2009

The New Employment Fraud Games afoot

There is a new fraud game afoot, though it seems this is mostly an old money laundering scheme with a new twist. The twist is that instead of an offer to buy your for sale item with fraudulent funds deposited into your own bank acct and then wire transferred to some obscure party in a third location, the fraud comes as part of a very enticing job offer for something called a Financial Manager.

I Googled an entire paragraph from the contract that was sent to my son, and it came up with exact paragraph matches on several other companies reported to be likely frauds. Because there was not clear information that they are frauds, I am reporting this as a new fraud game.

It works roughly like this, in fact, here is the "Duties" paragraph from the contract, it matches many, many other contracts verbatim, and describes something that most would recognize as money laundering, but to a desperate young person unable to find work, this comes as quite a treat to read this after little or no interview with the company.

The Contractor undertakes the responsibility to receive payments from the Clients of the Company to his personal bank account, withdraw cash and to e ffect payments to the Company's partners by Western Union or MoneyGram money transfer system within one (1) day. He/she will report directly to the senior manager and to any other party designated by the senior manager in connection with the performance of the duties under this Agreement and shall fulfill any other duties reasonably requested by the Company and agreed to by the Contractor."

The Contractor is engaged by the Company on terms of thirty-days (30) probationary period. During the probationary period the Company undertakes to pay to the Contractor the base salary amounting to 2300 USD per month plus 8% commission from each payment processing operation. After the probationary period the Company agrees to revise and raise the base salary to 3000 USD."

"The Company has the right to cancel this Agreement at any time within the probationary period or refuse to extend it after that, should the Contractor refuses to fulfill his/her obligations under this Agreement or fulfills them not in good faith."

"The Contractor has the right to terminate the Agreement at any time on condition that he/she has processed all previous payments and has no new instructions."

The website for this company has the earmarks of a fraudulently created laundering internet site, they call themselves, The Hub Group, which is a legit company, at the site which has been registered since 1996 at that site.

Hub Group, Inc.
3050 Highland Parkway
Suite 100
Downers Grove, IL 60515


Record expires on 05-Jun-2010.
Record created on 06-Jun-1996.
Database last updated on 12-Jun-2009 15:24:39 EDT.

HTTP:// is a look-alike

However, the web domain in all the emails has a slight twist that might not be picked up, but is a dead giveaway that it is likely a fraud web site. is what was in all the emails sent to my son, the .cn being a Chinese domain, which has been made to look similar to the regular domain of the legit company, and upon brief perusal, looks like the same web page as the legit company.

A Whois check of that domain produces the following info.

Domain Name:
ROID: 20090506s10001s02390171-cn
Domain Status: clientTransferProhibited
Registrant Organization: Private Person
Registrant Name: Gillermo Valdez
Administrative Email:
Sponsoring Registrar: 广东时代互联科技有限公司
Registration Date: 2009-05-06 00:38
Expiration Date: 2010-05-06 00:38

So this domain has only been registered since 06 May of this year, 2009, and all the pages on the web site are pictures of articles lifted from other websites, and none of the text is selectable to google it, as all the pages are basically snapshots, rather than text as in most other websites.

The list of pages that have the same fraudulent job listed is growing and includes the following, so please be watchful for the following also:

"BBM Group Inc. scam. This is just the latest of the numerous highly generic Russian scam websites that has been set up to form a front for a money laundering fraud job advertisement. (The identical job was posted by the Calisto Trading Inc., Reynolds Investment, & Simple Investments fraudsters and others)."

"It's a bit slicker than most but at the end of the day its function is to con you into believing that they are a legitimate company when the evidence clearly demonstrates that they are crooks. It's an identical scam to Epayment Solutions, Emarket Solutions Inc., Legal Operations Inc., Secure Operations Inc., Oranta Group Inc., Ketler Group Inc., Profit Financing Inc., Logic Group Inc., Maxi Group Inc., Fair Group, Fartex Group, MGPA Group Inc., Sky Group Inc., Idea Group Inc., Air Group Inc., Ideal Group Inc., Capital Group Inc., Fox Group Inc., Ebusiness Group Inc., Onicks Group Inc., Multi Group Inc., Single Group, DDK Group Inc., EFS Capital Group Inc., Eagle Group Inc. FCB Group Inc., TDK Group Inc., and the Ecos Group Inc. fraudsters among others."

"This fraud website has been produced in several languages. The website carries a clear money mule solicitation, their multiple domains were only registered very recently and all their contact and location details are bogus."
(This information was gleaned from

Friday, May 8, 2009

Here's That Time Our Math Teacher Told Us About...

When math could very well save our lives. Funny, I never thought it could happen like this. Being able to "Do The Math" could in some cases, be the very thing that helps us either recognize the inherent limitations in something, or conversely, its enormous potential; and yet so many people who went to school, fail to do exactly that, when it comes to deciding their next moves.

Case in point: eFusjon is quite possibly the start of a new boom, the likes of which we have only dreamed about in the past, with a Healthy Energy Drink that aptly and amply competes against every drink in its class, and a marketing plan that takes all the best features of every successful multi-level marketing plan in the past, and molds them into a streamlined version of the best of them, and injects them with enough "mojo" to make it, by the numbers, the best way to move a product quickly into the mainstream that I have ever seen, and I have seen lots of them.

Whew, and that said, it somewhat pains me to say that an older generation of potential marketers has been so stymied by all the programs of the past decades that didn't quite work, that so many question the numbers as just another pie-in-the-sky program that will only be good for a few people. True it is that the sooner you get into something like this the better it will be, but that is exactly the point here, it is very early in the game, and I still meet with doubtful resistance. What is UP with that?!? This is like having found a gold mine in the forest behind the neighborhood and my neighbors are telling me, "but I don't have a shovel." Well lets go buy one, you won't have to dig long before the shovel is paid for!

I am seeing that for the most part, it will be a younger generation that has not gotten it in their heads yet that working in an office will be the best or only way to spend their daily existence, that might actually consider doing this, but it still hurts that there are so many people hurting from this recession that could use the money that this will redirect from the $$ Billions $$ that are being swallowed down in the Energy Drink industry without a second thought, mostly in drinks that are just flat not healthy for the body, and here comes one that finally is.

Mark my words, this one is the one that will make a difference in the lives of so many people that I talk to, and I want to leave a milestone marker, literally 2 weeks into my time in this new opportunity, with 4 people in, I got my personal three and placed one new person under my first lady, and will help each of the people that works with me, to build their businesses, and I am predicting now, that I will never have to go back to a job again. Oh, and I guess I should mention, my last job ended Mar 31st, and I have not been able to find any work in my Tech Writing field, so I began looking for other ways to develop streams of income, in the absence of the standard ways, and I will ever be grateful to Wendy Cowles who showed me the numbers on this one. Check it out, you will be amazed as I was, and possibly will decide that the math works on this one.

Do the Math!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The New Economy is a Global One

To say that things will never be the same could very well be the understatement of the new millenium as we forge ahead in this new global economy. The internet has forever changed the way we all connect, and as a result, we can never again simply rely on our local economies for comfort or relief. But that is also a good thing, and I, for one, am excited for this prospect.

It used to be a given that if one wanted to set up a small business for their community, they had to at least have a service that was somewhat perennial in demand, and that the competition was minimal enough such that they could command a fairly steady income from their local pool of customers.

With the advent of the internet, the prospects for who are your local market and who might have need and use of your services are blown wide open and the possibilities are endless. Even competition is a different game, as the loyalty factor is wide open for grabs, and people will move around from vendor to vendor depending upon such factors as price, color choice of the website, ease of transacting business, referral by a friend, or a hundred other factors.

This means that imagination now plays an ever bigger role in the success of the small business owner, and yet it also evens the playing field, because try as they might, the conglomerates and big corporations now have no advantage and no threat factor to scare off or push out the little guys. The playing field is more level than it has been ever in the history of the world, and while fear still keeps many from joining the game, I have seen more young people than in my whole lifetime prior, diving into the small business game, now that the internet makes it something just about anybody can do.

I too have been forced into a corner with the IT job market drying up. I just ran into a friend the other day who is moving to Utah in a week because that is where he could find a job. I was faced with having to either start a much lower paying job by lowering my scope of what I am willing to do, or start selling my experience in my field over the internet. I have discovered by looking at for example that many of the jobs have moved from W2 contract types to the free floating 1099 type, probably because in the long run, there is less idle time for companies to pay for, in between work assignments.

It is high time that we in America caught on to the fact that the world is changing, and that we cannot afford the time or energy that so many people devote to trying to hang on to out-dated jobs and industries and start finding out what this new world needs done and either learn to do it, or do what we do well in a different and better way that fills current needs. The Obama Administration will bring with it much change as is already so evident in so many ways, and so we must look around at the kinds of things that will change and try to see the new work that will rise from those changes. So many of us will simply train for a new job, and that is fine.

I am using this time of change to finally make the needed transition I have so long avoided to join the ranks of the self-employed and business owners. Robert Kiyosaki points out with his cashflow quadrants that until you are either a business owner or an investor, you will always work for your money, but once you master the B and I side of the equation, your money will be working for you. That is how I intend to spend the next 50 years of my life. Join me.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Watch out for Trickle Debt

I have been wary of the new trend that is all to easy to get sucked into, which is to take on a free trial period of something and then lose track of when to cancel, or even the number to cancel it. All too often we get ourselves bogged down if we allow too many of these free trials to get started, without paying attention or noting how or when to cancel them if we find as I all too often do, that I really have not used the service as I thought I would when I initially started it.

This by the way, is what they count on when they start you up this way. Most people do not end up using the services on a repetitive basis as planned originally, but the money coming out on a monthly basis is usually in these cases kept to an amount less than $20 a month, so that in most cases we do not even see it coming out each month, or it hurts so little we do nothing about it.

I recently began to take stock of the number of such transactions I have coming out on a monthly basis and found that I currently have four services that protect me from identity theft, three magazines coming each month that I hardly ever read, and five transactions on my bank statement that I had to call to find out what they were; all under $20 a month but which each month add up to a sizable amount. It's okay if I am using the services, but I and all of us, need to be more mindful of the games companies play to get us started on a slow but steady drain of money from our accounts in almost unnoticeable amounts.

These are times where we should simply be more aware of where our money is coming from and where it is going.

Friday, February 6, 2009

My Rules for Twitter Following

I have developed the following loose rule-set for who to Follow in Twitter:

If a follower is a business, or marketer, I will follow-back only if I am interested in their tweets, or product, hardly ever, if there are only self-serving tweets in the first 5 or 6 tweets. I care not at this point if they continue to follow me.

If a follower is an individual, I will follow back, as my way of saying thank you, if after reading their bio and tweets, I find they are sincerely interested in meeting and interacting with new people in a calm, adult and friendly manner. I send out periodic group thank you's now for new followers.

If a follower is someone I am very impressed with, either by bio, tweets, or type of friends and conversation, (never simply by number of followers) I will follow back and make a personal comment publicly, thanking them for the follow, and maybe how I hope to interact with them.

I have stopped worrying about who quits following me, or why, as I only want people following me who are interested in my comments, and me, to whatever extent they may benefit from me, even as a customer. I want to network not only with people who have a lot in common with me, but with people who reasonably challenge my thoughts or ideas, and who are still reasonably positive about life.

I almost never follow people who show a tendency to engage in arguments with others or use rude or abusive language to get their points across, no matter how much I feel they might ultimately benefit by an exchange with me. I will not block them, however, unless they prove to be pushy as well as abusive.

I will outright block anybody who is obviously spamming, using adult or provocative images for their avatar or links to adult websites, or slanderous websites of any kind. Blocking should not be abused, and should be considered also a signal to Twitter to check this person out for possible abuse.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Twitter Opens Up a New World Online

While Twitter is likely to be around for a while, it takes some getting used to, mostly as its most visible features, Following, and Followers start to go from a few at the start, to a few hundred, and you find yourself unable to manually track what used to be fun and easy. The biggest and most profound change for me was as I approached my first 100 followers, and started to notice that my iPhone was getting inundated with SMS messages coming in, to the point where I had to shut off the phone's notification feature of vibration and tones, to let me know I was getting yet another SMS.

The first inconvenience was that I started missing family member text messages, because my phone was silently receiving them along with literally hundreds of messages a day. I started to think that the obvious solution was to turn off mobile notifications from all but the most important Followings, in terms of my interest in their comments.

I couldn't decide, and so I resorted to the plethora of tools available for my iPhone, and tested several before landing on one or two (*Twitterfon and Twittelator) that allowed me, without using Twitter's Mobile device feature, to not only log into my Twitter acct with my iPhone and read friends' comments, but then reply with a click.

I could, with one tool, track any "Tweets" that contained my username, infohwyman. This allowed me to be as responsive as I had always been to those who were either commenting directly to me, or replying to one of my earlier tweets, or even, as I discovered, saying something nice about me to another. It also allowed me to use my iPhone whenever I was ready to look at and catch up with the tweets that interested me and not be constantly bombarded with a steady stream of tweets, at times useless or pointless, and sometimes just not pertinent to me or my needs.

I have already heard of people getting exasperated and giving up on the whole deal, and I imagine to some extent it would be for some of the same frustrations I had felt, before I took action and found a way to allow this very useful and fun tool to continue to connect me to a world of thoughts and ideas, the likes of which have never come to me with such rapidity, nor usefulness as they do now.

There are so many positive uses that Twitter offers the adept and conscientious user, that I will save the ideas for a later post, but suffice to say now with utter conviction, Twitter has caught me in its net, and I am bound to it now, by the growing number of interesting people who have already made me feel very much at home, and many of which have already told me that I have made a measurable difference in their day with something I said. That is why I am here, and it is where I am heading.

* I am using a jailbroken iPhone, on TMobile's network, so apps available to me are actually not exactly the same as the Applestore apps, so I won't at this point make recommendations for iPhone apps to use, but Google and check around, there are already many reviews that led me to where I am happy now.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Is Monogamy Really A Selfish Form of Marriage? Answer to the Pavlinas Polyamory Argument

I have been married to my wife for nineteen years and we have felt lots of sexual tension, not to mention emotional extremes, but because we are both committed to the marriage and to each other, we have had no other choice than to work it out.

Frankly, I have always been a "live and let live" sort of guy, but to hear Steve and Erin Pavlina state that monogamy is actually a selfish form of marriage, because each partner acts as though they own the other is to denounce monogamy for its most failed manifestation, the marriage entered into for selfish needs or by two people who have no desire to stretch and grow. My wife and I meet each others needs, not because we are slaves to the other or owned by one another, but because we have, of our own free will, given ourselves to each other, and desire to make this life and forever together, a wonderful experience for the companionship of each other.

There are incompatibilities in any marriage, and the answer most assuredly is not for me to go find someone else who meets this or that need that my wife just won't. A lot of times, not doing so causes me to figure out what I want more, or whether or not this need is in fact a need. Most of the times, we should not go fulfill every deviant want that we can imagine is really a need.

I still feel that the Pavlinas deserve whatever kind of marriage they want, and I must also say that when they describe polyamory as a way of building a stronger marriage because both partners are happiest in this form of marriage relationship, I have to say, in my humble opinion, that no happiness garnered from experiences outside of a loving devoted companionship, could ever be greater than that experienced by two people who have learned and loved together, and decided that each other's needs are more important than a moment or two of pleasure that they might find elsewhere.

My marriage to my wife will last beyond the life we are living now, because we have raised children together, struggled together, fought side by side against a common enemy, and fought with each other about what was important to each of us. To live a life where we go and satisfy every desire when we have it and always meet every need the moment our partner does not, is to live a highly undisciplined existence which in the end, does not build strength of character or a strong love bond between two people.

I personally cannot see how polyamory could be described as a proper way to build a strong bond of trust between two people, because even if we are to shed all our selfishness, and envy, which is and should be the goal even in monogamy, the entwining of two lives is not as the Pavlinas describe, a shaky foundation of pillars so close that the structure tumbles, but is the divine multiplication of the gifts each individual brings to the marriage that strengthens the two as they become one flesh, a scriptural principle worth noting and as it is exemplified in my own life, with my own wife, and yes she is mine, and I am hers. Not at all selfishly, and yet, in a way that causes me to love her as I love myself. But I have to love myself enough to appreciate her.

To me, polyamory is not and could not be described as less selfish than monogamy, when both are lived to their highest forms. Monogamy does not mean to me that I cannot have emotional bonds with other women, nor my wife with other men, but the danger in living a life based upon excusing myself from even trying to meet my partner's needs that are uncomfortable to me is that it becomes a lazy way of loving and soon enough, one or the other will find someone else who meets more needs, better; then what?!?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Another Poem from Random Words

to Dragonblogger, I could really get to like this, for one, it is a brain wrangler and a half, to take a finite set of words and make a poem work. I did the following with the 9 words you got today, though I took a bit more than 90 seconds. For some reason, mine still need some sort of rhyming meter to work for me, tell me what you think.

Wasteful Earth Hater

They try so hard to make me cave
to think the octopus is my brother
they sell it all with marketable fear
but the information makes me smother

This environment is not some precious prize
that I must preserve for another
I trust in me and my own demand
my faith is in me, so why bother

Then another says with a louder voice
when they bury you, like so much fodder
then the sprinkles of dirt that you never cared for
will become a landslide, from your mother

The nine words were:
@summerbreeze80 (octopus),
@azredneck (demand),
@grumpy79 (faith),
@IntegralChaotic (landslide),
@mebanded (marketable),
@infohwyman (environment),
@SJohnson85 (sprinkles),
@SurfCityJay (information),
@stevebelt (precious)

Monday, January 5, 2009

Trying my hand at composing poetry from random words

The poem I am creating today is created using random words sent to DragonBlogger, a Twitter friend, with which he created a poem also.

Thanks to the following people for submitting their words: @SurfCityJay (love), @grumpy79 (euphoria), @izealove (sycophant), @summerbreeze80 (desperation), @WebBetty (fastidious), @SonoranDragon (spizzerinctum), @infohwyman (triumph)

Here is mine poem with the 7 words.

Love to so many is a noun
something that just miraculously arrives,
the euphoria of the brush of one found,
from the desperation of our lonely lives

yet to others the secret is bared,
ne'er the sycophant gains all that's sweet
for in the moment of triumph, alls fair
none can gain such a prize with a cheat

for the heart of another's not booty
to be taken fastidious -ly
wi' spizzerinctum thou doest thy duty
it will come by and by, thou shall see

This is posted on my blog so I can send him a link to check this out on twitter.

His poem for today can be found at

Thanks again for the inspiration, I have several blogs that have been utterly neglected during the holidays.

2009 will find me more dedicated to these and more.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

My Latest Contract Has a Nice View

This is the view from the conference room that I share with four developers working with me to make hopefully a big enough impression that they extend our contract for another year.

Otherwise George Bush and I will be looking for work in the worst economic conditions we have seen in decades. For one thing, I had to laugh when the big headline today was "Recession declared to have started in December 2007". Oh really?!?

They must have been waiting for the historical evidence, because most of us have known we were in one for that whole year.Still, I remain calm regarding my options, as I feel I will fare far better than in 2001-2003.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Speed of Thought? Almost

Bill Gates made a prediction that it would not be long before the internet gave us real time results for our thoughts.

I have to say he is mostly correct, and I have daily evidences of that.

Someone in the next seat over talking to someone about that one movie where so and so was the lead role with whats-his-name and they were being chased all over by this underground organization, and, wow, it's on the tip of my tongue, and within that amount of time, I can usually say, that was The Net, with Sandra Bullock and Dennis Miller, Yeah, that's it, and I did that on my iPhone.

The thing is it happens all the time, what does a rugby ball look like, what is ataraxia, what state has the largest football stadium, all kinds of stuff, and much of it downright trivial in nature.

So why my excitement tonight? Well, tonight I got a call from a young lady I have not talked to in over 25 years, Chrissy, and I am telling you, it was like we were kids on the phone again, just out of high school, never had we met except through letters and an occasional phone call, and then, life happened, and we stopped talking. That was then.

One recent evening I was going over some memories in my mind, and her name popped up so I typed into Google, her name just as I remembered it, and the first three hits were (shameless plug). While at first I was excited to find that I could see some of the details about her that I recognized were probably her, no contact info was available unless I signed up for three months minimum.

So i did, and got her phone number and called her, yep, her message still sounded like her, wow, she had her old name back. What's she been up to? So I left her a message with a few key moments described that I figured would jog her memory if it really was her and would not mean a thing if not, and left my cell phone number.

The next day, right at the end of a perfect day, I was driving home from a run to the store, and she called me and we talked for an hour, and reminisced, and I laughed as I thought about how, tonight we were reunited after more than 25 years, and it took Googling her name, and paying a small price to access a reunion service, and she was now on the phone with me. If that isn't speed of thought, it almost is, and is darn well close enough for most of us.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Marvel of Modern Technology

I have long said that we would not truly be in the Information Age until we no longer printed to hard copy before something we received digitally was usable to us. Basically, we have arrived and I still print things, and am truly at times amazed at the marvelous things these Printer/Scanner/Fax machines can do. I mean, who thought faxes would even hang on this long, they are like the 8 track tape players in a sea of CDs.

But today I was emailed some UPS shipping labels to print out and put on some boxes to be picked up in a few days and I was again amazed at the intricate detail that this printer can produce on a piece of paper passing under this whirring box with some cartridges attached to it.

Seriously, when I looked at the printout, I was again amazed at a technology that I have taken altogether too much for granted. Still more amazing is the fact that there is a gun that can read that UPC code and get so much information that has already been duplicated and stored at another location so that the data can be compared and tracked at the right points, without having to write anything down.

So here again, Wow, after all these years, a little contemplation of modern technology still leaves me amazed and awed.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

So Much Reality Might Not Be Good

Reality TV has made itself onto the web, to the extent that individuals with little or no film experience, put whatever their minds can conceive on the web, at places like You Tube and FaceBook, and many others.

I have noticed a lot of the content has no restraint, no moral limits, and represents to a great extent the very base and animal natures that are finding new expression in the upcoming generation as well as those who have merely found a freer place to bare their minds. There is plenty of good in the world, and I refuse to take too dim a view of this phenomenon, except to say that we still have an obligation as individuals to decide what is real, and what is garbage. Remember the old computer construct, GIGO, Garbage In, Garbage Out, is as true today as ever.

Those who allow media outlets to report what the world is like are often the ones who tend to blame their surroundings and consequences for the way they feel, act, even live. If you allow your life to be a reaction to life around you, then you will find yourself sinking deeper as the world around you does so.

Rise up, create your life, and decide each moment what your reality will be, and you will find a new and wonderful world of excitement manifesting itself to you. And you will be the master of your own destiny.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Technology Provides the Means for Constant Education

As I sit quietly somewhere, about to be content doing nothing, while waiting, I suddenly realize I have a book I am reading in my iPhone, using eReader.  I am currently reading the Science of Getting Rich by Wallace Wattles, but have downloaded many recent Business Best Sellers and have a traveling library that hardly takes any space away from my vast music collection and podcasts of recent talk shows and radio shows that I was unable to listen to while working.
All in all, there is very little my little iPhone cannot allow me to catch up on, with its 8Gb of space.  I am simply never without something to listen to or catch up on while I am traveling, on a bus, sitting in a waiting room, or waiting for a seat in a restaurant.  Of course if there is a human companion nearby, I still show respect to them and make conversation, unlike many of my teenage counterparts who can literally be standing in a crowd together and not one paying attention to another in their group, but each engaged in a conversation or concert in their own world.
I have never forgotten and will never forget that the primary purpose of these gadgets is to improve communications, and make our connections with others less disjointed, not more.
I have to appreciate the wonders of technology, but I still find myself amazed at the abuses.  It certainly does bring a whole world of media to the very one foot square that each person occupies making it unimportant now whether we be in proximity of a TV or a radio as to whether news and media can reach us, or whether we can buy the latest book on the bestseller list.
The other day I was lost trying to find an address I had neglected to google beforehand, so I pulled over and googled it right there on my phone, and it gave me not only the map, but allowed me to see the satellite view of the area, and zoom to within 1000 ft of the roof, seeing exactly which entrances pertained to my desired destination.
Wow, I am still amazed, for as far as we have come, how much farther we can still go from here.
James Williams

Monday, October 6, 2008

One of MY Dearest Friends Reminded Me

In response to my latest post previous to this one, a dear friend whom I have repeatedly mentioned in my writings, Lennox Morey, reminded me that while this might be a major re-dedication of my life, each day, week, and month we must re-dedicate ourselves to that which is most important.
It is true and I hope to have him post his comments more than just reply, because I have truly at times of my life, steered my boat by the currents of his wisdom.  He is a hard man to understand, unless you are willing to suspend normal modes of thinking and stop doing anything but listen while he talks.
He has been called crazy by so many, but I call him often for inspiration, and hang at times on his every word.
He has taught me most importantly, that to be a great leader, I must know who I am following, and not worry or look behind.
This past weekend was a weekend of re-dedications, as my lovely wife and I worked to paint our family room and marshall what kids would help, to get the job done before the weekend had ended.
Saturday night, Holly and I took a few hours and re-dedicated ourselves to each other, and had a forever memorable moment as we shared thoughts for the future, and our vision of how things will be in the next year.
And so I sit on a Monday morning preparing to join a call, and basking in the glow of a huge weekend of re-dedication, and knowing that I cannot fail, and that whatever the circumstances around me, I still create my life how it will be, with my choices and my focus.
Most of all, I re-dedicated my life to my Savior, Jesus Christ, and had a wonderful experience listening to our Church General Conference and the myriad of topics covered.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Re-Dedicating My Life

It seems clear to me that there is nothing more important we can do for our life's work than to find something we love doing, something that moves us all by itself, and doing that until we are the best we can be at it. Not compared to everybody else, but compared to all the other things we could be doing with our time. As one man once said, "What e'er thou art, act well thy part." Be the best YOU, that you can be, and that only happens when we stop living on the whims of others and start responding to the call of our hearts, and, as Stephen R. Covey says, "Find our Voices".

The truth of the matter is that some never do, find their voice. So many die with their music still in them. So many never rise above the proverbial "lives of quiet desperation."

What would it be like to not have to awake with an alarm clock, like that morning we were off to Disneyland for the first time.

We live in an abundant world, and we certainly, here in America, have no shortage of the tools God has provided all of us, to live lives of abundance.

Why do so many, in such a land of opportunity lead lives of quiet desperation.

It is our base nature to be selfish, and to seek first and foremost for that which is momentarily pleasing.

Do we have a choice whether or not to live such shallow lives? Certainly we do have a choice, but so many of us fail to find a reason strong enough to motivate us to make the right choice. It is not that we do not want "true joy." It is that so many simply do not see the value in finding something to move us to rise above pleasing the senses, to that joy that can only be felt by a life lived to God's full desire for us.

Can we find the motivation on our own? I don't think so. I think we must seek to feel God's plan for us, to feel about ourselves the way he must feel, if that is possible.

To see things as he sees them. Can we do that by ourselves? No, but he grants to each man and woman, as much of a glimpse as that man or woman is ready to see, and so the challenge; the primary challenge, is to cleanse the channel between us and Him. To make the communication between us and Him so clean and clear, and feel the gratitude for all He has given us, that we can truly acknowledge his hand in all things.

Then can we begin to see things all around us that have been there all the time, but that we never noticed, or whose import we never realized.

I am awakening to a new phase of my life, and the possibilities are limitless.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

While America Was Dreaming

Well, here we sit on the brink of the largest possible financial disaster in World History, and we all saw it coming a year or more ago, but while some were saying we are in a recession but doing nothing, others were saying, "the fundamentals of our economy are as sound as ever."

The problem we now have is that many leaders are lining up, happy to try their hand at saving us from this awful mess they have gotten us into, using exactly the same tricks that brought down Enron and other huge corporations.  By claiming that deregulation equals less government interference, they set us up with what feels like the "Free Market Capitalism" we all thought we were living in, all the while, allowing unchecked greed to take its course on weaker players and unaware consumers.  (Enron is a good example of this with massive power shut downs in California because of price gaming by some speculators and traders, affecting millions of people's lives while a few played God.)

When the damage has been done, and the major players that know better have ditched and taken their booty with them, the government then swoops in and says they will save us, but we are all going to have to tighten our purse strings for a few years and there may be a lot of people losing their retirements, but we can't bail out all the little people, because if the big guys fall, we all fall.  So we are going to have to prop up the big guys and you all are going to be okay eventually.  Because of the prior deregulation, what was morally wrong, has not been legally wrong, so those responsible, are guilty only of guessing wrong and losing millions of other people's money while protected from personal responsibility, going down in infamy, to have to spend the rest of their wretched lives consulting, or worse, retiring in some other part of the world with the booty.

Here we go again.  Hurry up and pass this well-thought, carefully constructed 3 page, $700 Billion dollar proposal that gives emperor like decision power over who lives and who dies, company-wise.  The game gets more wild as both sides wrangle to win support, and Bush looks more pathetic than ever with his laymen terms lesson of how all this nucular economics thing works and why this "sitiation" has all of a sudden become so dire there is no way we can just hope it away any more, like we did the whole last 8 years.

What can we do?  Does this now set up our President, 4 months before leaving office, to put into place some huge sweeping reform, an Executive Order maybe, worse than the Twin Towers justification for Homeland Security, wiretapping, the torture and killing of innocent people, and the like?

We can only wait in suspense.  What else is there at this point?

Tick Tock.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Arizona Might Be Hot, But After A Monsoon...

After a summer monsoon in Arizona, there is hardly a sight more worth seeing than an Arizona sunset.

I often ponder where else I want to live, and now that the Global economy is opening up and my world is less geographically dependent, Arizona summers always get me thinking what a big world I really live in.

But now that I can capture these on a fairly frequent basis with my iPhone, I have been getting some really beautiful ones.

It certainly gives one pause, and always takes my breath away. To me, there is no more sure testimony that I am part of a larger plan, and am touched daily by my creator, and my Father.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Some Things You Still Cannot Do on the Web

I woke up late to go to the gym to work-out this morning, so instead, I went for a walk around the neighborhood, something I typically used to do only at night, but here I was in the cool morning after a nice Arizona rain last night, and it was still cool.

The first thing I noticed is that freshness that everything has when it is still wet from rain, not that it is the first time I have noticed it, but as with anything, when we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change.

I have been doing a lot of changing and my awareness of the world around me is heightened. As much time as I spend on the web, I try to never lose track of the fact that everything I do for money, is for the sole purpose of being able to spend more time in the places of the world that I want to be with my sweetheart, Holly, and my wonderful kids and grandkids.

There is no way I can see that we will ever be able to exercise on the web, but even if someday someone discovers a way, I don't think I will ever trade away one such simple pleasure of life.

Monday, August 18, 2008

When the Student is Ready...

I have heard and thought I understood the oft repeated phrase, "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear."
Today, I understood that on a new and entirely more meaningful level, because of an interview I heard with Dan Millman, the author of "The Way of the Peaceful Warrior."
He said that so many of us think of this in the way that when we are finally ready to listen, and learn, we will have some master or wise teacher come along and take us under their wing, and teach us.
Dan said this is not the sense we should understand this, and it takes away from the truth of the phrase.
According to Dan, and I totally see his point, it can be simply enough read, "When we begin to listen, those things that have lessons for us, will finally get through to us, to teach us, and thus the teacher appears."  In that sense, the teacher is always there, and when we change our thinking, raise our eyes from their downward gaze, we see what has been waiting to teach us, and we finally hear, and to the extent we are indeed ready, to understand.
This is really how I understand the Law of Attraction, and the Law of Vibration, which many see as the basis of the Law of Attraction.
When you are on a certain frequency, you feel and see those things that vibrate on that frequency.  As you elevate or change your vibration, you come into sympathetic vibration with other things and you become aware of things that, while always there, have not been evident to you while vibrating at a different frequency, much like changing the TV channel.  Those signals were all in the room with us, but as we change the channel, we see those things that we could not, at a different frequency.
Seems simple, yet some never get it, or at least they never get the relevance in their own lives, of the need to elevate their own frequencies.
I have so much more to find, but at least I am finally searching, a willing student, yes, and learning still.

Friday, August 15, 2008

The Cost of Doing Nothing

I have lately heard many friends and associates say that they are just not going to vote this time around, because they can't stand either candidate. While that feels like a safe route to take, the truth is harder to take. Either way, one of these men will be voted into office, and frankly, one of the greatest costs of doing nothing, is that you have added nothing of your own personal wisdom to the debate or the outcome.

Worse than that is that some of you who do nothing will likely still claim the right to complain or worse, whine, about the way things have gotten with whomever ends up in office.

I voted for the last guy, and yes, I have learned something, but I can't say I would change my choice if I could go back right now and do it again. Sometimes, even when it feels like we have no choice, no voice, it turns out that we do. We just sometimes need to talk louder, or find a better platform. Or build one.

The internet gives so many people, the tools to accomplish a world of good, and to add their voice to the billions of others in such a way that it can indeed be heard, and make a difference.

So, speak up Americans, educate those around you, or learn more, from others, and from the candidates themselves. Don't throw in the towel because the system is not apparently set up for your opinion to count. Make some changes, there is plenty of time, though the clock is ticking on this one.

Some will sit back, and beat their chests, and then change... the channel. Others will speak up, and make their mark upon the world. Still others will never even know things have changed.

How rare indeed was the founding of our great nation. In a world where most rebellions are led by the "fed-up few" who have nothing to lose, ours alone in the history of the world, was led by men of means, who had much to lose, and were willing to pledge it all to the casting off of the tyranny of a king whose usefulness had run out. I still search for its equal in world history.

What will it take for us to be willing to leave our comfort zones and lead a cause for change?

One by one we see it happening. Don't wait. Be the change you want to see in the world; one man proved it can happen that way.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

No Snow, No Test Pattern on the WWW

I still remember growing up, if all else failed, it was time to go to bed when the last channel went to snow or a test pattern. It was the end of another programming day.

Now, being connected to the world, and having cyber friends and events happening all over the world, the line is harder to see.

Oh wait, that's my heavy eyelids! ;)

We have to remember, that even though somewhere in the world, the sun is rising, our bodies have a clock, set to local time, and they need to rest. Living on the WWW does not mean we have to be awake for all events.

No worries, if anything important happens while you sleep, someone will come get you, and let you know, maybe even Ted Turner (CNN). Either way, the adage still applies, "early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise." You won't find yourself falling asleep in the middle of the day.

Now off to bed with ye.

Friday, August 1, 2008

PayPal really is What it Calls Itself

Living on the web has the potential to make life a lot easier and at the same time, a lot less private. One area that still has a lot of people worried, and with some good reason, is making purchases. The main frustration I encounter plenty, is with the requirement of most purchases, that you default to an auto-renewal of that purchase unless you notify otherwise.
This is a very legitimate and profitable way of doing business, and allows people the freedom from having to babysit subscriptions and other recurring purchases.
Sometimes we make credit card purchases that turn out to be something other than what we wanted or in some way cause us to reconsider having that recurring charge. Usually, the last information available, and sometimes not available easily, is how to cancel; the less legitimate, the harder it is to find. Well, PayPal has an option, whenever a purchase is made that sets up a recurring hit on the account, that allows the cancellation of that recurring hit, with the click of an option.
Obviously, credit card purchases should never be made capriciously, however, many websites use the, "this price available this time only, if you leave this site, the price is gone..." approach, and that does sometimes lead to purchases that are less than well researched.
It's nice to know that some places not only guard your online information well, but have safeguards built in that to some extent, make the reversal of a rush decision not have to result in an all night search for the receipt, or purchase information.
This is just one more reason that I am ecstatic to be make my home on the Web.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Does it Get any Better than iPhone?

Of course it does and it will, but I am right now enjoying the best of several worlds, now that I am up and running with a WinPwn unlocked iPhone, on my T-Mobile family plan, that has as much battery life and 8GB of space for more than enough music, and pictures, and allows me to listen to Pandora Radio with my internet service on the TMobile account.

It was not simple to get where I am now, and I am documenting the steps it took, and preparing to publish an eZine article. Kudos to all the dev teams working on affordable (not free, unless you are too cheap to donate once you see the benefits to be derived from all their work) solutions to the proprietary lockdowns on this technology.

The solution that worked for me did not end up being, though their work is well done; my firmware (2.0) was too far along to be able to downgrade far enough, in fact, FW 2.0 does not to my knowledge allow for downgrading. Nevertheless, the solution ended up being an oddly named product, that allowed me to literally pwn my iPhone. That's right, I said pwn it. It's a product called WinPwn (RC1) and it required me to do more than I expected to have to, but once I was done, I now have a T-Mobile powered iPhone that has full on internet capability, clean running You-Tube access, and I do mean clean running.

I watched a full 1 hour streamed documentary without any pauses or ripples, which I have not done on any handheld computer or phone, even my most recent Toshiba e800 running xcpuscalar which overclocked my xscale cpu in the e800 to 530 MHz, and could run most full length movies almost without a glitch could not stream so cleanly.

Yes, I have long known that Apple memory and cpu access technology is faster and cleaner than the equivalent Microsoft OS no matter what the hardware, as evidenced by Apple lately using Intel and Unix OS. In fact, as it turns out, Unix is the OS behind what I am running on my iPhone, though I must qualify that with, "I do not know much of the details, but am researching it for my article."

Suffice to say, this is the next best thing to the Killer App I have long sought, because this is one tool that just about does everything I have long awaited to be available on one device.
I Twitter with ease now, from my iPhone and as I said earlier, can listen to Pandora radio as if it were music on my phone. That's worth the wait.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Listen and Learn

I had a fun experience while leaving my workplace yesterday. I encountered a man standing by a tree looking curiously up into its branches at a locust (cicada) sounding its deafening screechy song. His name is Anthony, and he works in my building, but unlike the myriad workers who pass that tree each day, he had stopped to smell the flowers, or in this case, to observe life in one of its many forms.

We are very much alike, Anthony and I, and we hit it off and had quite a conversation on the way to the parking lot, but not before both standing and looking up into the tree. It was mostly about taking time to notice things around us and not being so caught up in just making it through each day, as so many do.

We must learn to listen, and that does not always mean just with our ears. We hear with our ears, but truly other senses are employed if we are listening. Hearing happens, such as when the proverbial tree falls in the forest, assuming we are there. But listening is something that only happens as a matter of choice, and involves focus, and stillness.

Be still, and listen. A dear friend of mine, Marjam, a half a world away in Estonia, spoke in her blog about the advice of a monk. When asked if he could teach one and only one thing to the world, what would it be? He said merely, "Listen."

I do not wish to take away from the simple profundity of that statement, but wish to add my own experience to it.

I have learned through my life, to still myself, to find a quiet place, or to be quiet wherever I am, and listen.

Life is moving, breathing, laughing, loving, all around us, each moment, and we see so little of it, as we move from one place to another.

Learn to be still.

Learn to Listen.


Hear it?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

How Much Do I Matter Really?

Billions of humans live each day almost oblivious of the rest of those who occupy this blue-green orb.

We touch each other often, but mostly we brush each other on our hurried way to some-thing; some event, or some place where we can occupy our thoughts, or our hands, or merely our time.

In a world of growing connectedness, it will no longer be possible to live out our sometimes solitary lives without affecting and being affected by many more people than in any previous generation.

And Yet...

The way many of us go through each day, this transformation will go largely unnoticed.

Is it possible for one person to help a thousand? How about a million?

It happens each day, and many of us fail to notice that it is not by some miraculous event that many lives are changed, but by little shifts in awareness, of one of us at a time.

On a planet of almost 7 Billion people, having a notable effect in the lives of mere thousands is almost not newsworthy. But newsworthy it remains, because of the simple fact that most of us still allow ourselves to be content, with getting through our own lives, without hurting or damaging too many others along the way.

Find your Voice and make a difference. It is part of what gives us joy in the journey.

Friday, July 11, 2008

The Cluetrain Almost Left Me

I have just recently discovered The Cluetrain Manifesto, and while I feel I am a relative late-comer to the concept, I am by far, still ahead of the popular curve on this. Why is it that most of the people in our land still resist change?

I discovered and bought the book last month, and it sat on my shelf waiting for me to find the time to read it, when, quite by accident, I opened up another book which I knew I should read and simply had not. The 8th Habit has turned out not only to be an eye, and mind opener, but again made reference early in the book, to The Cluetrain Manifesto. Now, I have just begun to read both books, and am studying them for what change they can help me effect in my own life.

I am sure I will have much to say about both, as every chapter in either one jolts me again and again, and even when I re-read the words of a chapter. There are some wonderful teachings which I had already begun to feel the need for, but did not realize at the time what I was feeling.

I am finding my voice, and I am beginning to see that there is so much that I can contribute to help those around me see and accept the direction our world is going. The world and the work of the 21st Century, for most of us in the USA, will be work done with our mouths and with our minds and not so much with our hands, and those who resist will merely continue to complain about how we are losing all of our jobs to foreign nations that will do it for less.

Let's all wake up and realize, the changes we see happening around us should not cause us to curl up and hold on to what we know. It should cause us to start learning again, possibly enrich that which we know, hopefully learn some new things. I see this as very positive, and want to be part of the world we are moving into.

To use a phrase from my childhood, "Resistance is Futile."

Friday, July 4, 2008

Independence Day and Change is on the Horizon

I once voted for the man called W, but I cannot see now, what I saw then. Am I blind or do we have at the helm, a man who could not keep his own business ventures afloat during most of his young life, and who has been emotionally absent from most of the important decisions of his current office visit?

I will not rant, I will just say, that I have been doing a lot of soul searching, and, while I am not happy with the Republican party, I am also not sure that either party offers the change we so richly deserve and so desperately need in this country.

I am studying the latest work of Fareed Zakaria, "The Post-American World". To say that America is losing its primacy in the world is not to say that the USA has not played an important role in the improvement of world economic and political conditions. There is no doubt that we have blazed a trail for the world to emulate, but emulate they are, and we seem to be losing sight of the responsibility we have. And so we must of necessity stop trying to dictate to the rest of the world that they must set up a Democratic government. In fact, it was never Democracy that was setup for us by the Founding Fathers. It was a Republic, "if you can keep it," said Benjamin Franklin, and we may actually have already done our best to dismantle it beyond recognition.

Still, without us, or rather US, there would be precious little in the world to prevent the uprising and despotic rule of any of several tyrants. Many have tried and we have been there to maintain the independence and support, for most of the world, and uphold, freedom for the masses.

Can we patch the wounds we have inflicted on our great nation? We have to care as a nation and strive to regain some of the goodwill which has been lost. But we also need to stop trying to be the self-declared policeman for the world. We are well hated throughout most of the world for our presumptuous leadership, and determination that we know better how to deal with our weapons of mass destruction than anyone else.

Democracy does not mix well with some of the highly religious nations we are trying to help with it. Democracy, and the Republican form of government we were given by our Founding Fathers, does not thrive where there is not individual freedom, morality, and sovereignty. We will see what change we can effect this time around, and what good John McCain can do if he can even defeat the growing wave of support Barack Obama is finding even in conservatives who remain unaware of his extreme views in many areas he does not address right now.

Here's to the audacity of hope, no matter what the results.

Friday, June 20, 2008

The Universe is my Playground

The trust we have for what we know to be true, is a powerful element in determining where we are and where we stay. Those who are willing to know that there is knowledge out there that we must find and understand and make a part of us, are constantly in motion, while those who feel they know all they need to know, express that in so many ways.

New ideas bounce off of some people, like a freshly inflated basketball off a wall. Don't try that around here, we already tried that years ago and it doesn't work. Ha!! No it did not work and yet how much of that was you and how much was the thing you tried?? You may never know, and probably will never care that you could have, had you only wanted change badly enough.

I know that my knowledge comes from the ever changing application of new ideas to old ones. I cherish the old ones, for they got me here, but I never feel tied to them such that a new one is not welcome. Some call that wishy washy, or unsure. I am not unsure about how I feel about a great many important things. I am however certain that there a myriads of points of view from which I have not yet seen the same things. Therein lies the importance of this. Two people can see the very same thing and have experiences worlds apart from each other, standing right next to each other. It is not the thing, or even the looking at it that is the reality you experience, but the glasses through which you see the thing, that makes it for you, an experience to treasure, or to ignore.

I could keep going for a long time, but will save some for later. My universe is spinning on.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Faster Pace Means "Sometimes You Just Need to Steer"

Life in the fast paced world we live in now, can at times seem like it is taking chunks out of us as it passes us by, but I like to think of it all as a refining process. It's like "life in a rock tumbler." It is inevitable that some rough edges will get knocked off and in the end we'll be a smoother version of ourselves, even shinier. The problem for many is that they misunderstand the bumps and grinds as misfortune and go about it with a gloom and doom attitude instead of thinking, "Oh yeah, there goes another rough edge, ouch, didn't need that one either."

Sounds kind of goofy but so does sitting next to someone in a waiting room somewhere listening to them whining as if they were a 10 year old talking about how they can never get a break, when all around them are people worse off than them and people with more problems making a better go at it.

I do not want this to become a rant. It is what it is; my version of why "bad things" seem to happen to good people. Because what we call "bad things" are just things and they happen to all of us, and they are part of the process of getting back to our starting point better for the journey.

I am grateful for all of it, the journey is more exciting that way, and in fact, Joy should never be our goal, but instead should be our chosen method of travel. Peace Be The Journey.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Working Back in Corporate America

I have taken a contract back in Corporate America, and they have really battened down the hatches. I have a laptop and no admin rights to install anything. I have access to the internet and can read no personal webmail, all the sites are blocked. I know they have to protect their network, but seriously...

Yes, it is time to find a way to get back to working from home again.

I mean sure, it is a good place to work, no names, but they have been around a while, and I am likely to be able to stay put through the hard times, but I know the internet is growing in leaps and bounds and will continue to provide more and more worldwide economic growth. There has to be more I can do.

I continue to search for legitimate opportunities for income streams on the Web that are not just contributing to other people's spam outlets.

After working from home for the last two years and loving being so close to my family and having the amount of latitude I have had, it is hard to find much to like about working back in a building it takes an hour to get to and back from each day adding two hours to the amount of time I am away, and on top of that, leaves me largely unavailable to help a kid in need, someone needs to be picked up early, someone is sick or injured, call Mom, except this Mom is likely in a massage session and unavailable.

So we continue to search for ways to increase the flow of income. Isagenix is one way we are working now, that is a growing wellness industry giant, a world leader in a new niche carved out in the wellness industry called Nutritional Cleansing. More on that as it develops. For now you can see that web site at

Gotta go now, my Saturdays are more precious than ever before now that they are so jammed with things I can't do during the week.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Internet is not Evil, Any More than Fire is Evil

While it is true that the internet has given rise to an increased availability of evil influences, such as pornography and phishing, none of these things were brought about or created by the internet, and nothing forces us to be any more victims of these evils now, than we were forced to be before.

I am one who knows that the addictive powers of pornography are real and not something to be trifled with. Many good people have fallen prey to and lost all they had worked for in their lives simply because they took lightly the addictive power of pornography. When I say it is a real addiction, some may scoff at that, but there is ample evidence that the hold that it takes in the lives of the men and women it infects involves not merely their minds, but the chemical forces in the body that are by design, strong enough to drive men and women to extreme behaviors in all aspects of their lives.

There is no good that can come from an addiction to pornography, and it is not a suitable substitute for real human interaction and relations. In most cases, pornography gives men a sense of dissatisfaction with their own mates as time and life takes its toll on their bodies. Pornography offers an ongoing and purely unreal constant against which we inevitably compare our own aging bodies, and our spouses will rarely continue to measure up to such a standard of eternal youth. Eventually the damage done to a marriage is beyond repair and very often the damage does not stop at our marriages.

Still, in spite of the fact that the Internet has become a 24 hour full-open channel of these types of influences into our households, we are not any more now, than ever before, forced to be victims of it. We must be more vigilant as parents than ever before, and more aware of the protective tools available to us, to ensure our homes do not become a receptacle of the clumps of sewage that have made their way onto the information superhighway.

It has always been up to us and ever remains our challenge to learn new ways to defend against and warn about, the dangers of what is out there. It will never be a good idea to leave the entire defense in the hands of our government, duty-bound as they are to help.

Fire has awesome capabilities for good and evil, so also the atom, and more recently, the internet. No one will ever be able to defend your home as effectively as you, and God help us all if we are ever dispossessed of our freedoms to make that happen, in any realm of our existence.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Keeping it Real Time

We have a son in the Marines, LCpl Benjamin Williams, currently stationed in Africa, and he made sure and got a laptop before his deployment that was wireless capable.

He now is able to quickly apprise us of needs, or say hello to the family. We are half a world away from each other, and yet are able to communicate real-time.

He sends us updates about the place he is living now, and some of the day to day trivialities that are very enthralling to us who have never experienced anything like it.

We are very proud of our Ben. He is the first member of our family to see a lot of the things he has seen, and we are anxious to see him again at the end of his deployment, as he is so full of life and talent. Yes, he even remarks occasionally, how glad he is that he brought his guitar along with him. His accommodations are a lot less primitive than I had imagined they would be when he first told us where he would be going, so I honestly was not sure how well a guitar would fare under those conditions. Apparently he continues to get better and there are others in his squad or platoon who play, that did not bring theirs.

It is always good to hear him ping me for a quick chat. Gotta love that real time data transfer. No previous civilization has known of the things we get to deal with in our lives. We have real time conversations with people half way around the world, we can go to the corner market and buy foods from every corner of the world, even out of season. We have ice in the desert, and conditioned air, we can drive in a day, what a man would have taken a week to cover on foot.

We are more blessed than we sometimes are willing to acknowledge but every day, I am thankful and vociferous about it. This is but one way.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

On the web, a click can go for miles

I have today been wandering from my camp on the web, and have found some wonderful sites, just by hitting "next blog" on the top and linking from each site found. This really is opening up new worlds for me. I have learned some new words in Estonian, "Eesti" is how it is said there. "Ilus" is one of the words for beautiful in the language, which I wanted to know when I saw Annika's pictures of her country, and a sunset or sunrise on her blog.

Then I found Mirja and Marjam, also from Estonia, Tallinn to be exact. But then while looking, I found a woman, a singer whose name is Maarja-Liis Ilus, and she is a singer from Estonia.

I find this mind-expanding and inspiring in so many ways. For one, I have always wanted to learn more languages, I speak English and Spanish fluently, and am learning Portuguese, well, Brazilian Portuguese, I studied Deutsch in college which really helped in Hungary when I could not communicate in Magyar (Hungarian), but found another common language. There are so many people now willing to share their thoughts and feelings and history, that we are in fact in a different world in this new century than any we have known before.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Of all the places I have been...

The place that left me in awe, at every turn, and wanting to go back and take my wife was Budapest, Hungary. I was there on assignment with Honeywell to train the European technical support staff for a week, in the new VPN solution we were rolling out.

What was so memorable about the trip was the feeling that I had stepped out of a time machine. Nevermind that I was in the castle district, at the Budapest Hilton, but then they gave me a room with a view looking east over the Danube river into the sunrise every morning, with a castle turret interjecting medieval architecture into a breathtaking view of the sprawling city, just across the river.

The young technical support staff was hospitable, professional, and very intelligent, most of them speaking a minimum of 3 languages. I found myself feeling less like the expert from out of town and more like I wished I could stay longer. I was able to get to know several of them during the week I was there, and told them quite honestly, I would be back. I guess the icing on the cake was that I had just discovered the music of Corinne Bailey Rae right before the trip, so I had her latest CD at the time, and so, as beautiful music can often imprint memories more permanently into our souls, so did her beautiful, lilting voice singing "Breathless", "Choux Pastrie Heart" and others, do the same to mine.

My life will forever be different for experiences like the ones that I collected in one short week in a country still shrouded in its Medieval architecture, and poised to gain considerably from the growing modernization spreading across Central Europe like a brushfire. I will return, and look forward to spending more than a week.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Don't Worry, Be Happy

Don't Worry, Be Happy!

My days are full of so much wonder and excitement lately. I am hardly able to settle down enough to type. I am very pleased that I have found this outlet for my journaling, and for connecting with so many in the world who are like-minded.

There is hardly a day that goes by, that I am not in some way, left more deeply aware that I am not in this by myself, but am part of a grand plan.

My wife of almost 18 years and I, have traveled quite a journey of discovery. The path has not been without its pain, and its tough memories, but I am convinced now more than ever before, that each moment, each event that happens, is neither good nor bad in itself, but is exactly as we see it and make it, however we wish. We create in each moment, the life that tomorrow, we will reflect back upon. We choose to be loved, by loving others, and the more we give, the more we receive. In true alchemist form, we make more of anything for ourselves by giving it away first.

Just as worry creates for us the very situations we feared, so also do all our thoughts create whatever we focus on, but we must be willing to take the positive to the same extremes to which we take the negative. Some try positive for a while, but when they do not get the results they want, they say, "See, this stuff doesn't work!"

We can, if we desire it, decide that we will only focus on things that take us where we want to go, and we can use that to create a happy marriage, a life of wealth or peace, or whatever we intend. Likewise, we can continue to let random thoughts take us in circles. In fact, I have often thought that is the real reason that most of us live common, seemingly random lives. Because we neither focus on the good nor the bad, but let the winds of random thinking run us around in circles.

How about this? Decide where you want to go, map it out, make a journey plan, and each day when you awake, prepare yourself again, to resume where you left off the previous day. Each day, look ahead, never wetting the finger and checking the winds, to follow where they blow you. Then you can say, with each new day, "I can't wait for the next, for in it, I will see and feel new things that will take me closer to my goals, to my dreams."

Then and only then, can you know the joy of the journey, and stop waiting for the prize at the end for fulfillment. The prize is a life well lived. Live life with the expectancy of a child who can't wait for tomorrow's adventure, and you will see how quickly life can become one again.

Monday, March 24, 2008

If you build it, they will come...

I have been very impressed with how quickly my once shaky ideas for what I would make of my presence on the web have unfolded. I am pleased and animated by what is emerging for me as a very clear path with instructions lighting the way as I forge ahead.

The website linked in this blog, called is one I stumbled upon when doing a search for how people are using the term "flesh out" v. "flush out" as regards an idea or a plan. My vote is firmly in the "flesh out" camp and I believe the evidence for that stance is solid.

My point however, is that I am taking nothing as accidental, but am building upon the framework of casual browsing and "fleshing out" that framework as I go, into what I hope will be a thriving service on the web. Here again, I refer to the linked article, "Doing Business by Doing Good: Social Entrepreneurship" as proof that ending up at was no accident, because I have to say, at first I doubted whether or not my idea was viable enough to take the plunge. However, as the article says, and as the movie quote that titles this article suggests, if there is a need that will be filled by this inspiration, then they will come. The corollary to this states however, that if you don't build it, your chances of having someone ask you to, are pretty much nil. In other words, "it is impossible to steer a parked car". Action is the best cure for fear.

I saw another quote in an article today that takes me along the same lines, inspiring me on the way to establishing a service for those who are nervous, or simply uninformed about how easy it is to safely live on the web, and that article came to me in one of my newsletters that I have flooding my inbox. It was stated by Andrew Snyder of TFN (Today's Financial News).

"The nation’s leaders have long admitted the nation’s days as a manufacturing power are over. We are a full-fledge service economy. So we need to act like one. " – Andrew Snyder

To me that means that we simply as a nation, need to allow for and accept the changes that are hitting us at breakneck speed and stop putting into office, leaders who will continue to prop up failing sectors of our society, which only delays the inevitable demise in most cases, and drains the coffers that the American Taxpayer pays into, in the process. We are ramping up for another momentous change in the direction of our work world, as a nation, and we need to stop allowing the ones afraid of change to dictate how public monies are spent, because it ultimately dilutes the amounts that can be spent in the legitimate growth areas of our economy. More on this in another blog.

Check out It is worth your visit to see some of the thinking that is shaping the decade ahead.

Friday, March 21, 2008

The Worldwide Success Network

My very dear friend, Leslie Householder, author of the wildly successful The Jackrabbit Factor: Why You Can, and the equally uplifting and inspiring Hidden Treasures: Heaven's Astonishing Help with Your Money Matters has invited me to join and to invite my friends to join, the above linked Worldwide Success Network. They are actually running a promotion right now, that if I refer 3 friends to join, and use my name, James Williams, as the person that referred them, that I and the 3 that join will receive some powerful gifts including her book, The Jackrabbit Factor in PDF format, and will allow us to become part of a growing network of successful people who are changing the face of business and success on the internet.

Please take a look at it, and send some of your friends to do the same. Tell them to use your name in the referred to box. There is no charge for joining and you will be opting in to a network of people that are making a difference in the lives of so many others.

Leave me a comment, and let me know what you think.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Resistance is futile...

Seems we see these cycles from time to time, though lately, a lot more often, where we feel the economy squeezing out another old industry, or facilitating its transfer to the third world to make room for more prosperity, and yet this prosperity never comes without a price.

The price is usually change, and while those of us who clearly remember Ronald Reagan, have a harder time changing, it should be obvious to all of us by now, that we will either change with the times or wither in misery as the default standard of retirement in the system, becomes a poorer and poorer prospect for survival.

Change we must, and change we will, and those who dig in and resist, will change also, but the change will hurt more, and it will seem to them as though nothing good has happened. Those of us however, who have decided to go with the flow, can do so without surrendering any of our morals or absolutes, and will find along the way, that this "Brave New World" has unlimited possibilities and offers us new vistas unheard of in previous generations.

So here it is, my entry into the rapids. I come prepared for the exhilarating ride, and look ahead to the rush it promises.

To quote one of my favorite novelists, Kurt Vonnegut, "I want to stay as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can't see from the center."

Sounds risky, but so is sitting here doing nothing while the IT world transforms again, and thousands of dollars per second fly by me on the internet, while I sit and wait for that next job call on my resume. NOT! gonna happen. ;)