Use Vehicle Placard for Safety when Geocaching

October 12, 2014 at 5:26 pm (Geocaching, Personal, safety, security) (, , , )

I’m just putting out a little Public Service Announcement (PSA) today to encourage safety while geocaching.  Every year, we hear a couple of stories about folks who went geocaching and got lost or injured, and while things generally turn out ok, there are a few things one can do to ensure a happy ending to their day.  It’s mostly common sense, but crazy things still happen.  You don’t want to be one of the Darwin award winners for the year.  ((Note: for the uninitiated, the Darwin Awards are the annual awards given, often to surviving family members, for acts of incredible stupidity).  

It’s always a good idea to use the buddy system when geocaching, partly because it’s just fun to cache with a friend;  but for those occasional times when you just want to go it alone or no one is available to go with you, there are a few things you can do to make sure you arrive home safe and sound after logging those smileys for the day.  Always let someone know where you are, especially if you are going geocaching in a remote area.  Make sure you have your geokit with you which has geoswag, snacks, and water, in case you have a flat tire, car trouble, or an accident. An emergency battery pack for your cell phone is also a good idea, since we know having the GPS enabled on our iDevices runs the battery down much quicker.  I picked up a super little solar battery pack from Amazon for under $10 and it works great, giving me several hours of extra battery life.  It’s also a good idea to have at least a small first aid kit and an emergency whistle so you can let folks know where you are if your cell phone is lost, damaged, or dead. 

Geocacher Vehicle Placard

Another thing you can do is hang a geocaching placard from your rear view mirror.  I found a nifty placard design at the Geocacher University website.  It looks similar to a disabled placard, but it is green and has the familiar geocaching logo on it.  There are two large white spaces on either side.  One side is for vehicle and owner contact information. You can enter as much info there as you are comfortable with.  I listed my first initial and my last name. I didn’t want to list a phone number, knowing that police could easily verify my vehicle, and they could also access my phone number if needed.   The other side is for the geocache information.  You can enter the GC# for the cache, or even the actual geocache coordinates.  I printed a couple copies then took them to Kinko’s and had them laminated.  That way, I can use a dry erase marker to enter the GC# of the cache each time, and just erase it when I return to my vehicle.  

Sometimes, we think we’re going to just dash into a park a couple hundred yards off the road, so we leave all our gear in the car.  Then you trip over a log and end up with a badly sprained or broken ankle, and all of a sudden that quick trek into the park becomes a minor emergency.  I used to think it meant I was less independent if I had to let someone know where I was going.  Now that I’m older (and after working many years in the ER and ICU) I see that it is just the smart thing to do. This placard is a great addition to every geokit out there.  It lets folks know where you are, what you’re doing, and helps keep you safe at the same time.  That’s good for a smiley all by itself.  

Do you have any other ideas to promote safety when geocaching?  Let me know in the comments.  Until next time, be safe, and cache on!

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Beware of Friendly Emails from Social Media Contacts

September 5, 2013 at 4:43 am (Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

1Password Logo

I’m beginning to really hate Facebook these days.  Their lack of privacy protection coupled with scum of the earth who prey on others is almost enough to make me delete all social media forever. Almost. 

After getting a message telling me my account had been hacked (and knowing it hadn’t), I started investigating.  It seems a lot of people have been getting messages purporting to be from myself and others in my contacts list, but the email address is different.  You can quickly check to see if your account has truly been compromised by checking the “Sent” mail to see if mail has actually been sent out to others. If it has, you’re dealing with something different entirely.  Most likely, though, it is just the contacts list that was compromised by someone you know on a social media site. 

So, what usually happens is something like this:

Someone has their account compromised. Their friends list is obtained. Now, phishers send email to those contacts from a person’s name on their friends list, and often the email address is hidden (or folks just don’t notice it is a totally different email address because they see a person’s name with whom they are familiar, and they just skip over the email address).  Then, the recipient clicks on the link from the brief message (which ALWAYS includes a link of some sort, be it a photo, video, or weblink). Now, the unsuspecting person has likely just come in contact with some spyware, malware, etc.  If they have a Mac, they are probably ok.  If they have a PC, it depends on their protection package. 

The scammers generally have not accessed the account details of the folks on their list, it’s just a list of contact names, kind of like someone writing any name in the return address field of a letter to be mailed. I can choose any name from my address book to place in that field, then I can add any address to it as well. 

Note that it often happens to those of us with friends in common.  I suspect the spambots gather webs of common friends, then use them to send email phishing scams to targets. 

This is typically what you’ll see in the resulting email:

1.Friend’s name (John Smith) in the “From” field, but with a different email address.  These are frequently from a Yahoo or Hotmail address (

2.Subject is usually something like “Check this out” or “For ‘your name’”

3.Generally, the messages are very brief and always include links, saying something like “You’ve gotta see this” or “Look what I found” or (lately) “Saw this picture of you on (insert your social media site here)”

There are a few things you can do to protect yourself.  If you don’t use a really good Password manager like 1Password ( please start now.  I can almost guarantee the safety of my accounts because I use 1Password with its random password generator.  I don’t reuse passwords, I don’t use my spouse’s name or pet’s name or birthdays or words that are in the dictionary for passwords…all of those things that make some folks perfect targets to have their accounts compromised.  You only have to remember your main (master) password, and the rest is automatic. It takes care of logging in to sites for you and does so much more, including protecting you from phishers by making sure the website you think you are viewing is the actual site, and not just pretending to be that site (a popular way many folks give up their passwords is to think they are on sites such as banks, PayPal, etc. but they really are not). Therefore, not only does 1Password securely store your passwords, logins, and other information, it also acts as your first line of defense against scammers, phishers, and other unscrupulous scum of the earth.  It used to be Mac-only, but now there are versions for Windows, iOS, and Android, so virtually everyone is covered.  The versions all sync, so you always have all your information where you need it. This is the one of the top three apps that I absolutely, positively could not be without. 

Enable 2-factor authentication, also known as two-step verification, when possible.  This means that in addition to logging in to a site with your user name and password (first step), you will be sent a code, often by SMS on your cell phone, to verify the account (second step).  Several sites offer 2-step verification now, including Google, Facebook, Twitter, and others.  Here is a link to a Gizmodo article telling you how to enable it on your other services:  I’ve been using 2-factor authentication with Facebook for awhile now, and, while it can occasionally be a pain, I have gotten used to it and feel much safer using it knowing that it would be very difficult for someone to access my account. 

If you aren’t sure about a message you receive from someone, look at the return email address.  Make sure it is actually the sender’s email address. 

This should go without saying, but don’t EVER click on the links. Doing so will almost always invite trouble. It might look harmless, but a link can be named almost anything. I can send you a link to a site that will install really bad juju on your PC, yet I can title it, “Beautiful Sunset”. 

Above all, be vigilant and use common sense. It’s always ok to send someone a message to ask them if they sent you something. Replying to the message will not send it back to your ‘friend’ in most cases, because it wasn’t from them anyway. It’s best to just ignore it. Still, one of the best things one can do to protect themselves online is to make good use of 1Password. Be safe out there. 

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New Scam on the Block: Scamming via Text Messaging

August 5, 2013 at 8:46 pm (Uncategorized) (, , )

The conversation started innocently enough.  My partner asked if something was wrong with the debit card.  I said, “No, why?”.  The response was that she’d received a text from Regions saying the Visa debit card had been temporarily deactivated, and it gave a number to call for reactivation.  Alarm bells started ringing in my head.  First of all, we don’t have a Regions debit card.  Second, a text message?  Third, it gave a local phone number for assistance.  

Text Scam

This works for a few reasons.  They pick a large bank knowing that a large percentage of the population will have an account.  There is some convincing information there, because they have the first few digits of the card, right?  Nope.  All Visa cards begin with 4, Mastercards begin with 5.  By including a little information that sounds plausible, some folks might automatically think it is legitimate.  They only need a few people to respond to make it worthwhile. Congratulations.  You’ve just given your card information over to someone planning a small shopping spree. A few keystrokes later,  I was reading about one of the newer scams on the block:  SMS phishing, or “smishing”.  Scammers send out a burst of text messages to local numbers with a message that starts something like this:  “(name_of_bank) NOTICE: Your VISA #4355-47xx has been temporarily deactivated. To reactivate, please call (local number)”.  When you call the number, you get a message telling you that you have reached the automated service center. They tell you to leave your card number, expiration date, and 3-digit code on the back (not all include the code part), and your card will be promptly reactivated.  

If you think your debit or credit cards have been compromised in any way, call ONLY the toll-free number on the back of the card.   Do not be embarrassed and hope that nothing will happen if you did slip up and give someone some information about your account.  In many cases, the thieves will rack up charges halfway around the world within half an hour. They do it quickly before folks have time to think about it. By the time it gets reported, the damage is done.  So, report it quickly so your card can be blocked, and a new one can be issued.

Be vigilant folks.  It’s a whole new world. Stay safe out there. 

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Fourth of July: Fireworks (not) for Fido

July 1, 2013 at 1:54 am (Uncategorized) (, , , )

It’s almost that time again, when we don our patriotic garb and prepare to celebrate the Independence Day holiday in typical Southern fashion: grilling, picnicking, jamming to great music, swimming with friends and family, and capping it all off with some great fireworks.

However, some members of our family, like our four-legged furry babies, might not enjoy the fireworks as much as the rest of us. The flashes of light and the loud pops and bangs can really set their nerves on edge. Their reactions might range anywhere from mild discomfort, trembling, and wanting to be held to hiding under the bed to stark terror, trying to scratch through the door, dig under, or jump over a fence. I’ve seen small dogs claw their way right up and over a four to six foot fence when stressed. 

When our furry friends are frightened, their fight or flight response kicks in just like ours. They can bolt over a fence or jerk free of a collar or leash in seconds. From there, tragedy can quickly follow, particularly if you are at a fireworks display near a main road or highway. A dog can dash into the street and be hit before a driver realizes anything has happened. 

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Here are a few tips from the ASPCA to keep your dogs safe. 
Keep your pets away from fireworks, candles, grills, lighters, and any other fire source.
Don’t let your pets near alcoholic beverages, as it can be poisonous to pets.
Don’t feed your pets scraps or people food from the cookout. Stick with their normal food. Especially steer clear of onions, chocolate, raisins, grapes, and avocados, which are toxic to pets.  
Don’t put any sunscreen or insect repellent on your pet that isn’t pet-safe. Ingestion can result in drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst, and lethargy.
Don’t leave pets alone around a lake or pool.  Aside from all dogs not being super swimmers, they could also ingest chemicals that could make them sick.

Make sure your pet has a properly sized collar, although many favor a harness at times such as these when they might be prone to pull or jerk from fright. A harness is much more secure, and does not risk choking the pet, plus it is much more difficult for them to slip out of it.  Be sure to have ID tags on your pet, with your phone number, so you can be notified if your pet does get away from you. If you’ve been considering microchipping, but haven’t done it, this is a great time to take care of that. It’s a great way to make sure your pet can always find the way back to you. 

If your pet always exhibits fear or anxiety from fireworks (and possibly storms and other triggers as well), talk to your vet. They might recommend medication to help calm your pet. If you must leave your pet alone, leave them in the house if at all possible, to prevent them going over or under the fence. Another suggestion, according to Dr. Pamela Reid of the ASPCA, is to give your pet a toy stuffed with peanut butter (if there are no dietary restrictions). She says the pet’s nerves are calmed by the persistent licking. 

If you suspect or know that your pet has ingested something poisonous or potentially toxic, call your vet or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435.  Follow these simple tips, and enjoy the holiday with your furry friends. 

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Lay/N/Go Bag is Great Travel Companion

April 27, 2013 at 6:40 am (Personal, Products, Travel) (, , , , , )


Ok, folks, for all of you who have cosmetics spread all over the bathroom counter, or you have lots of stuff in several little bags, or you’re on a business trip and you realize your favorite concealer didn’t make the trip with you….there is a new product for you. It’s called the Lay N’ Go Bag and it is beyond awesome!

I’ll be the first to admit, I’m not big into makeup anymore, but I do wear it for special events, church, and things like that. I started using Cat Cosmetics makeup developed by actress, entertainer, and entrepreneur, Catherine Hickland, a few years ago. My face and I were unhappy with the expensive high end products I was using and, while looking for an alternative, I came across Cat’s product line. I liked that they were natural, not tested on animals, good for sensitive skin, and worked with all skin types. Best of all, they were affordable, and the customer service was top-notch. She had put together a small kit that contained six products: a concealer, blush, eye shadows, and liner, plus applicators. I tried it and loved it. I got a couple other products and was hooked. There was no going back.

Fast forward a few years. I had been looking for a bag in which to keep cosmetics while traveling. A couple of trips last month showed us that we were woefully underprepared. I happened to see Cat post about a new bag she found, and it looked interesting. It didn’t do anything for the part of me that wanted some organizational aid, but there was something liberating about just dumping everything in a pile on the counter then scooping it all up together. We decided to take the plunge and order our own Lay N’ Go Bag.

It arrived today, and (I’m slightly embarrassed to say) I had to watch the short video to figure out how to close it. LOL. I kept trying to “open” it…It was so easy that I was making it difficult. I must admit, I felt pretty dumb once I saw how simple it was 😉 You just lay the bag flat, put all your stuff on it, then pull the drawstring. It scoops everything up like a bowl, then you slide the cord lock down and it’s secure.

It is just amazing! It truly holds a ton of stuff, plus it has a large inner zipper pocket and a small outer velcro pocket. It’s also water repellant and washable, thanks to the nylon and poly fabric. Another little bonus is that it comes inside its own little drawstring bag, so you actually get a cute little bonus bag. This may be one of the coolest things I’ve ever bought…it is just so practical.

You don’t even have to use it just for cosmetics. Obviously, it’s great for that, but I’ve already been thinking about other uses for this bag. It would work equally well for guys and gals, and would be just as good for a business trip as a weekend getaway. An artist could toss a handful of paint tubes in a bag and head out to a specific location. Toss a handful of toys on it and scoop them up for a quick and easy rescue pack for kids (or the babysitter, ha). It is available in black for $29.95, or silver or gold for $34.95.

Above is a snapshot of the bag with most of my Cat Cosmetics inside…I was skeptical, but you can see how much it holds. Fantastic! Order yours from Cat Cosmetics, and let me know what you think. Cheers!

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Tea Time

April 1, 2013 at 12:58 am (Personal) (, , )

Most Southerners like their tea one way: iced and syrupy sweet. You think that’s two ways? Not in the South! 😉

Maybe it’s because I went to the UK in my teens and fell in love with the concept of “tea time” or maybe because I’ve spent a lot of time in Canada, actually taking part in afternoon tea, where the world stops at 4p no matter what you’re doing. I actually love tea, both hot and cold, and I enjoy trying new ones.

Although i’ve tried a LOT of teas, i’m still very much a newbie at this. I can vary the temp a bit, but i don’t have a newfangled machine to do it for me…not yet, anyway. I’ve gotten away from bags and now I use the real stuff: loose tea. I can thank my buddy, Nik, for that. Also, thanks to him giving me one of the best gifts ever with Steepster’s Tea of the Month club, through which I have greatly expanded my knowledge of teas, and, hopefully my palate as well.

I wrote a review and some tasting notes for 3 teas that are near and dear to my heart. On any given day, I might declare any of the three my favorite. They are Samovar’s Ocean of Wisdom, Teavana’s Rooibos Chai, and Della Terra’s Ayurvedic Serenity. All three are terrific blends incorporating some of my favorite spices: cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and chamomile, among others.

IMG 0443

I’ve found that most folks tend to fuss about cinnamon, Like fuss and cuss. Now, thankfully, I’m in the minority there. i LOVE cinnamon. Bring it on! The more, the merrier, for the most part. Ginger, on the other hand, is slightly opposite…not so much because i don’t like the flavor, because i do. Mostly, it’s because it tends to initiate a migraine, which doesn’t make me very happy. However, and very thankfully, I have no neurological issues with these three. They are so good that I think I would just have to accept the migraine and take medication. Yep, they’re THAT good.

Its goodness shouldn’t be a great surprise to supporters of Ocean of Wisdom, which has been my favorite tea for a couple of years. I mean, honestly, it was custom blended for His Holiness The Dalai Lama. To me, that just says, “Wow”. It also says the dude knows good tea 😉

Seriously, though, I first had this tea just after I’d started drinking loose teas, when I was in San Francisco for Macworld. A group of us went to Samovar’s for tea, and I was hooked after my first sip. I simply could not get enough. I kept discovering something new with each successive sip, with just layer upon layer expressing itself. Maybe it was just the first time I’d had a truly excellent cup of tea that wasn’t Earl Grey.

Regarding the tea itself, Ocean of Wisdom has almost a subdued heat to it that builds to a strong finish, almost the way good Mexican food has a way to sneak up on you before you realize what has happened. It is loaded with vitamins and antioxidants, so it’s actually really good for you. Considering all the health issues I’ve had for the past few years, maybe I need to just hook up a permanent infusion and see what happens. This rooibos blend contains cinnamon, cloves, ginger, licorice root, and black pepper. Normally, I run from licorice, because I don’t typically like it, not even a hint; but (you knew there was a but, right?) I don’t really taste it here, which is a good thing, because I would hate to run from this tea. These tea leaves are a dark reddish brown that leaves you with a gorgeous clear red tea after steeping that just beckons you to, “Come. Drink.”

There are many levels to this one. Just when you think you’re done, another layer pops to the surface—or does it come up kicking and screaming and gasping for air—the way I was when I made it a bit strong, so that it took my breath away and my throat burned long after the last drop.

Still, Ocean of Wisdom sets the bar against which all other teas are judged. This is the closest to a perfect cup of tea that I have ever had. I can’t imagine anything else even coming close to this one, but it will be fun trying to find a successor. Let the games begin.

(Note: The above photo was taken at Samovar Tea Lounge, Yerba Buena Gardens, in San Francisco just outside Moscone Center during Macworld 2011. That’s Pugsy, who goes everywhere with me, sitting on top of a pot of Ocean of Wisdom.)

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The Angels Cried Today

March 5, 2013 at 8:25 am (Personal) (, , , )

It rained yesterday as I drove home to Memphis from Knoxville. I believe the angels were crying tears of joy at the addition of a new angel in Heaven, and tears of sadness in empathy for the pain we feel over the loss of Aunt Hazel. 

Aunt Hazel Then and Now

Some of my fondest memories are of spending countless days and nights at the house in the mountains, at a location aptly named Top O’ the World. The house had a screened in porch across the back, which looked out at the mountains and the valley below.  Aunt Hazel loved to look at the night sky.  We would spend hours just talking and looking at the moon and stars. She taught me how to identify such landmarks as the North Star, the Little and Big Dippers, Orion the Hunter, and more. Frequently, we would head over to Cades Cove with other family members to picnic by a babbling brook, sometimes even sharing our bounty (intentionally or not!) with the bears, raccoons, and skunks. Toasting marshmallows was, and still is, one of my favorite things to do. Back at the house, we would join my other aunts, uncles, and cousins, and play board games such as Trouble, Sorry, and Life, well into the night.

She was a big sports fan, and we loved to talk about Tennessee football and basketball.  I don’t know who I will talk to about our Lady Vols basketball team during March Madness 🙂 The world was a better place with her in it, and I was certainly a better person because of her. I will miss her greatly.

Here’s an early photo along with a more recent one taken in her beloved Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains.

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Dinner with a Legend

June 10, 2012 at 8:58 pm (inspiration, Personal, sports, ut) (, , , , )

Pat Summitt and CC jpg

I hope I will never forget one of the greatest moments of my life: I had dinner with Coach Pat Summitt. It means even more to me now, since her battle with Alzheimer’s Disease has forced her to step down from her head coaching position at the University of Tennessee, where she is now Head Coach Emeritus. President Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom last month, the highest civilian honor one can receive. 

But back to our dinner.  It was a fund raiser of some sort, the details are lost to me now. But I went with my father, who is a UT graduate, and has always been active in university affairs and a member of various boards. So, we arrived a little early to the event, and I was looking around to see where Coach Summitt was going to be sitting. I remember telling Daddy that I hoped she was close enough that I could see her. He just smiled a little and said he thought I’d be able to see her just fine. 

Just as I was making my way to the table, I heard a familiar voice call out from behind me.  “Hey, Leonard, how are you?” Daddy turned and said, “Well, hello Pat. It’s good to see you again.”  I’m not usually one to get star-struck, but I absolutely could not find any words as I found myself face to face with Pat Summitt–well, not quite face to face–she is quite tall.  But still. I just stood there while Daddy made introductions. She shook my hand, warmly and firmly. She asked me a few general questions as we walked toward the table. She stopped at a seat, smiled at me,  and said, “Well, it looks like we’ll be having dinner together tonight”.  I looked at Daddy, who was sporting a mile-wide grin.  He said, “Oh, did I forget to mention that to you?”  I nearly fainted.  I giggled, then hugged him, then hugged her. She was laughing, too, and told me to “just relax. I put my pants on one leg at a time, just like you do”. 

I did begin to relax and the next couple of hours flew by in a blur. We chatted like old friends as we ate. We taIked a little about basketball, but mostly about other things: our shared love for our four-legged friends and driving fast, fond memories of the peace and quiet of farm life and country cooking, a well-played game, and a well-played prank (the sense of humor came thru). I could not possibly come up with enough adequate adjectives to describe her over the course of that two hours.  She was at times the most engaging, generous, funny, warm, witty, intelligent, kind, successful, determined, courageous, self-deprecating, humble, and considerate woman I have ever met. She left a lasting impression on me that night, the night Pat came to dinner. 

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Twits, or Rudest Group of High School Girls, EVER

May 27, 2012 at 10:25 am (Geocaching, Personal) (, , , )

Nothing like staggering half-asleep to the hotel breakfast buffet, only to be tripped up and blocked from the entire huge room by stacks and piles of duffels, pillows, luggage, etc. belonging to a bunch of high school girls who play field hockey at AIM in St. Louis. It took ten minutes for them to get off their surly butts and clear a path. One said, “why can’t they just climb over?” I wanted to say, “See this thing I use to help with mobility, little girl? It’s called a ‘cane’. It makes it more difficult to climb over stacks of clothing left by rude little twits like you”…but I refrained.

By now, my senses were assaulted and I was fully awake. They couldn’t be bothered to be considerate of other guests as they spread out and overtook take up every single table in the smallish dining room, forcing everyone else to struggle getting past them to the *group* room where they were supposed to have been. I got so angry, watching the elderly, moms with toddlers and babies, and just regular people trying to navigate this room carrying their breakfast.

Some of these girls grabbed food from the buffet with their hands, and one even had the nerve to take the last biscuit that I’d just tried to pick up with tongs and dropped because I was juggling my cane with other things and got klutzy. I looked at her, speechless (yep, I was *that* stunned) and she gave me a little grin. “Oh, did you want that? I’m sure they’ll bring more. Hee hee”. I said, “Your parents must be so proud of you, raising you to take food right from the crippled chick’s tongs”. She rolled her eyes and walked off. I quickly breathed a prayer that I wouldn’t assault this budding menace to society, and walked to the waffle maker, where I encountered another of tomorrow’s leaders. When the waffle finished, this girl looked around, picked up the huge nearby stainless ladle rest, and tried, unsuccessfully, to use it to extract the waffle. I thought I’d be helpful, since the comic relief was neither relieving me nor getting me any closer to my goal of getting a waffle. I said, “Excuse me. You might have better luck with the tongs there” (gestured to tongs hanging next to handle of waffle iron). “The what?”, she asked, looking around blankly. I said, “Those things that look like big tweezers”. (lightbulb slowly coming on in her head) and I’m thinking “3…2…1…” and she says, “OHhhhhh”. Gets tweezers, removes waffle, leaves. Wow. They must have been having a contest to see who could rack up the most “rudeness points” because most of them were like that to everyone they encountered. Don’t get me wrong, a couple of them were nice, polite even (shhh, don’t tell their mean girl teammates) but the rest, well, we’d be here all day.

After jockeying with position with them for two days, most of us stood and applauded when they left to board their bus. Yes, I know, not one of my finest moments. They were, without a doubt, the rudest, most self-absorbed, group of teenage girls I’ve ever seen. Maybe that’s the definition of a teenager these days, but if I’d ever acted in public (or in private!) like some of these girls, I would not have made it to college because my parents would have killed me. One of the saddest things about all this is that the school and theses girls will be remembered for their self-serving actions and rude behavior.

I’m happy to report that we finished breakfast, chatted with another group of fellow geocachers, and successfully averted a stroke based on my then-rising blood pressure. Hoping for a nice, relaxing morning, going to grab a few more geocaches that are close to here, then gradually make our way on over to Knoxville for a family visit. Cheers!

Sent from my iPhone

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You’ve Purchased HOW Many Apps???

June 18, 2011 at 1:45 am (Apple, Applications, Humor, iDevices, iPhone/iPod Touch, shareware) (, , , , , )

I stumbled across this Mac application recently after seeing one of my friends, @chartier, tweet about it and thought I’d share it with you so we can all be staggering around in disbelief at the sheer number of apps that we have purchased (and how much we’ve spent on them!). I’d been trying to find a program like this after a friend and I were discussing how many apps we’d purchased for our iDevices. After seeing David’s tweet, I decided to download it and give it a go.

The application, by WetFish Software, is called App Store Expense Monitor. It’s a free app (donations accepted).  It’s just a straightforward zip file for your Mac. Run it, and the program finds all the apps in your iTunes Mobile Applications folder. It tells you the App, Developer, Category, and Price of the apps you’ve downloaded.


It shows the current price of the app, although you can edit the price to reflect what you actually paid for it — good for those that might have been free or that even (gasp!) cost more when you purchased it than they do now.

It can be exported as a CSV or XML file.  I did have to change the path so my Mobile Apps folder could be located, as it wasn’t quite in the standard spot. However, this was easy enough to do, as it just involved choosing the desired path and selecting it in the options.

Try it and see what you think.  You can download from their website here: . I have 342 apps totaling $593.57.  Leave me a comment below and let’s compare purchases.

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