I'm gonna Plunge into the Chesapeake Bay with my brother John Collins (Jan 25th) to benefit the participants of Special Olympics Maryland! Please go to my page if you can donate a dollar or two. I'm sure pics will be posted shortly after we freeze. I understand we will be drinking tasty cold beverages to help keep us warm!
Welcome to Silly Boy & Silly Girl. A GenX view on life and how we wade through it. Feel free to check out Bob or Jennifer's blog, and our take on Dear, Abby. This site is growing and developing daily. Please enjoy the ride. Feel free to reach out to us by email; Bob or Jen.
I had a conversation the other night about the insane situations we find ourselves in as adults over 30 in today’s world. Circumstances our parents were never in and only 5 years ago, we never thought we would be in. That is a huge subject with all kinds of talking points within it that we may want to explore at a later date. Today I want to focus on Facebook and how grown ass men & women lose their mind, common since, and decency when publicly interacting with family, friends, and people that they know on a social network.
On Facebook I have my mother & father, my siblings, my closest friends, friends, my school mates, my teachers, my friends parents, my friends children, people I work with and have worked with, girls I dated/gone out with or may be going out with now, or may want to go out with later. People I had a drink with and it seemed like a good idea at the time to be Facebook friends because drunken bonding made it seem like a long lasting friendship. The dynamics are endless in this insane melting pot of “worlds collide” that would never really happen outside of a juggernaut social network.
Facebook started out a college kids play land and then the older kids came to play and messed it all up. Oh it was fun in the beginning, playing, and embarrassing each other about our nights out. It was all peach pie and ice cream until out of know where everyone you have ever known was on Facebook. So now you need to filter and Facebook has become a way for you to keep up with all your friends but mostly people you would not otherwise talk to unless you crossed paths. Don’t get me wrong it is fantastic to have a looking glass into the lives of people you know. It is awesome when they make you feel like; hey my life is not so bad after all. Facebook is your own personal reality show.
We all know how kids have used Facebook to bully other children. It is not just children and teens doing this. Some adults get on Facebook and act like complete morons. They do things that they would never have the balls to do face to face. They forget who is watching them and the family, friends and even co-works that they are affecting when they engage in cowardice acts like: taking personal and passive aggressive in-your -window shots at people they know. They can seriously effect peoples, personal, family and work life. Even if you block them they can still keep coming at you because mutual friends can still view their page. Don’t be this person. All you’re doing is entertaining all the voyeurs who are talking about how pathetic you are behind your back, hurting another human being, and frankly just looking sad and pathetic.
Also, if you are posting, talking with someone else’s husband or wife on Facebook, STOP it! It is wrong. You may say but… NO it is wrong! Wrong! You can talk to that person when you are live in person when their or your spouse is with you.
So if you are going to Facebook don’t do anything you would not do in front of your Mamma, because she is probably watching.
Robert Davi has remade Frank Sinatra's Mistletoe & Holly to raise Money for the Salvation Army. It is available on iTunes & Amazon. It sounds great and will be an excellent addition to your Christmas collection. Thank You Robert Davi!!!
VirginiaTech Transportation Institute found that truck drivers who were texting were 23 times more at risk of a "crash or near crash event" than "nondistracted driving."
A simulator study by Clemson University found that "text messaging and using iPods caused drivers to leave their lanes 10 percent more often."
This guy had 11 texts in 11 min before he caused this crash.
By JOAN LOWY - Associated Press - AP Photo/Jeff Roberson
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Federal accident investigators recommended states ban the use of cell phones and other electronic devices by all drivers except in emergencies.
The National Transportation Safety Board's recommendation followed a finding by the board that the initial collision in a deadly highway pileup in Missouri last year was caused by the inattention of a 19 year-old-pickup driver who sent or received 11 texts in the 11 minutes immediately before the accident.
The pickup driver and a 15-year-old student on one of the school buses were killed. Thirty-eight other people were injured.
The NTSB's recommendation makes an exception for use of phones and other devices in emergency situations.
The board doesn't have the power to impose regulations, but its recommendations carry significant weight with lawmakers.
A 19-year-old pickup truck driver involved in a deadly highway pileup in Missouri last year sent or received 11 texts in the 11 minutes immediately before the accident, federal investigators said Tuesday.
The driver sent six texts and received five texts, with the last text just before his pickup traveling at 55 mph crashed into the back of a tractor truck, beginning a chain collision. The pickup was rear-ended by a school bus, which in turn was rammed by a second school bus.
The pickup driver and a 15-year-old student on one of the school buses were killed. Thirty-eight other people were injured in the Aug. 5, 2010, accident near Gray Summit, Mo.
About 50 students, mostly members of a high school band from St. James, Mo., were on the buses heading to the Six Flags St. Louis amusement park.
The accident is a "big red flag for all drivers," NTSB chairman Deborah Hersman said at a meeting to determine the cause of the accident and make safety recommendations.
It's not possible to know from cell phone records if the driver was typing, reaching for the phone or reading a text at the time of the crash, but it's clear he was manually, cognitively and visually distracted, she said.
"Driving was not his only priority," Hersman said. "No call, no text, no update is worth a human life."
The board is expected to recommend new restrictions on driver use of electronic devices behind the wheel. While the NTSB doesn't have the power to impose restrictions, it's recommendations carry significant weight with federal regulators and congressional and state lawmakers.
Missouri had a law banning drivers under 21 years old from texting while driving at the time of the crash, but wasn't aggressively enforcing the ban, board member Robert Sumwalt said.
"Without the enforcement, the laws don't mean a whole lot," he said.
Investigators are seeing texting, cell phone calls and other distracting behavior by operators in accidents across all modes of transportation with increasing frequency. It has become routine for investigators to immediately request the preservation of cell phone and texting records when they launch an investigation.
In the last few years the board has investigated a commuter rail accident that killed 25 people in California in which the train engineer was texting; a fatal marine accident in Philadelphia in which a tugboat pilot was talking on his cellphone and using a laptop; and a Northwest Airlines flight that flew more than 100 miles past its destination because both pilots were working on their laptops.
The board has previously recommended bans on texting and cell phone use by commercial truck and bus drivers and beginning drivers, but it has stopped short of calling for a ban on the use of the devices by adults behind the wheel of passenger cars.
The problem of texting while driving is getting worse despite a rush by states to ban the practice, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said last week. In November, Pennsylvania became the 35th state to forbid texting while driving.
About two out of 10 American drivers overall - and half of drivers between 21 and 24 - say they've thumbed messages or emailed from the driver's seat, according to a survey of more than 6,000 drivers by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
And what's more, many drivers don't think it's dangerous when they do it - only when others do, the survey found.
At any given moment last year on America's streets and highways, nearly 1 in every 100 car drivers was texting, emailing, surfing the Web or otherwise using a handheld electronic device, the safety administration said. And those activities spiked 50 percent over the previous year.
The agency takes an annual snapshot of drivers' behavior behind the wheel by staking out intersections to count people using cellphones and other devices, as well as other distracting behavior.
Driver distraction wasn't the only significant safety problem uncovered by NTSB's investigation of the Missouri accident. Investigators said they believe the pickup driver was suffering from fatigue that may have eroded his judgment at the time of the accident. He had an average of about five and a half hours of sleep a night in the days leading up to the accident and had had fewer than five hours of sleep the night before the accident, they said.
The pickup driver had no history of accidents or traffic violations, investigators said.
Investigators also found significant problems with the brakes of both school buses involved in the accident. A third school bus sent to a hospital after the accident to pick up students crashed in the hospital parking lot when that bus' brakes failed.
However, the brake problems didn't cause or contribute to the severity of the accident, investigators said.
Another issue involved the difficulty passengers had exiting the first school bus after the accident. The bus' front and rear bus doors were unusable after the accident - the front door because the front bus was on top of the tractor truck cab and too high off the ground, and the rear door because the front of the bus had intruded five feet into the rear of the first bus.
Passengers had to exit through an emergency window, but the raised latch on the window kept catching on clothing as students tried to escape, investigators said. Exiting was further slowed because the window design required one person to hold the window up in order for a second person to crawl through, they said.
It was critical for passengers to exit as quickly as possible because a large amount of fuel puddled underneath the bus was a serious fire hazard, investigators said.
"It could have been a much worse situation if there was a fire," Donald Karol, the NTSB's highway safety director, said.
My Sister-in-law found this. I hope this is a good sign they are ready to move from dogs to humans. We have to keep the Collins name going you know.
(HealthDay News) -- A stressful early pregnancy could lower a woman's odds for delivering a boy and raise her risk for premature delivery, a new study suggests.
The findings from an investigation of how the stress of a major 2005 earthquake affected pregnant women in Chile suggest that pregnancy can be impacted by exposure to stress itself rather than the factors that often accompany or cause stress, such as poverty, the researchers said.
The investigators analyzed the birth certificates of all the babies born in Chile between 2004 and 2006, which was more than 200,000 per year. The birth records provided information about the babies and their mothers, including how close the mothers lived to the epicenter of the magnitude 7.9 earthquake.
Reporting in the Dec. 8 issue of Human Reproduction, the study authors found that exposure to the earthquake during the third month of pregnancy reduced the ratio of male to female births.
"Generally, there are more male than female live births. The ratio of male to female births is approximately 51:49 -- in other words, out of every 100 births, 51 will be boys. Our findings indicate a 5.8 percent decline in this proportion, which would translate into a ratio of 45 male births per 100 births, so that there are now more female than male births. This is a significant change for this type of measure," Dr. Karine Kleinhaus, an assistant professor of psychiatry, obstetrics & gynecology, and environmental medicine at New York University, said in a journal news release.
This finding may be related to previous research, which has found that male fetuses tend to grow larger than females and need more resources from the mother, and therefore are more likely to miscarry in times of stress. In addition, male fetuses may be less robust than females and may be less capable of adapting their development to a stressful environment in the womb.
The study also revealed that women who experienced the earthquake during their second and third months of pregnancy had shorter pregnancies and were more likely to have premature babies.
Compared to women in parts of Chile unaffected by the earthquake, the pregnancies of women exposed to the earthquake in the second month of pregnancy were an average of 1.3 days shorter, and the pregnancies of those exposed to the earthquake in the third month of pregnancy were an average of about 2 days shorter, the findings showed.
More than nine in 100 women exposed to the earthquake in the third month of pregnancy had a premature baby, a 3.4 percent increase over the normal rate of about six in 100. The effect was most notable among baby girls -- close to a 4 percent increase in premature birth if the mother was exposed to the earthquake in the second month of pregnancy and a 3.8 percent increase if it occurred in the third month.
Earthquake exposure had no statistically significant effect on the risk of having a premature baby boy, the researchers noted.
The March of Dimes has more about stress and pregnancy.
Copyright © 2011HealthDay. All rights reserved.
Photo from http://reallycutestuff.com
A awesome story from my Hometown:
Minding Your Business: Americus industry should give Americans hope
A feature I saw Monday on the “CBS Evening News” is without a doubt one of the best business stories I’ve seen in years.
I can’t stop talking about it.
It’s a Georgia story that I hope gets duplicated over and over throughout small-town America in the coming years.
Local leaders in Americus, a town 75 miles from Macon, thought David Hughes and his business partner, Jae Lee, were joking when they floated the idea of opening a company making chopsticks in one of the town’s many shuttered plants. They wanted to use a vacant bumper factory.
“It was like, ‘Are they really joking us?’ ” Hughes said in the CBS broadcast about the responses he and Lee initially received when presenting their idea.
Turns out what seemed like a silly idea ended up being the perfect business.
China runs through an estimated 45 billion disposable chopsticks every year, but the country is low on lumber, according to a March 2006 BBC news story about that country introducing a 5 percent tax on wooden chopsticks in a bid to preserve its forests.
In south Georgia, however, there are forests of poplar and sweet gum trees.
Perfect for chopsticks.
Hughes and Lee opened Georgia Chopsticks last May, and the 50 jobs they’ve produced were surely welcome in a county with 13 percent unemployment. Hughes said in the CBS broadcast that factory closures around Americus have left thousands without jobs, and hundreds showed up to fill his 50 jobs.
Georgia Chopsticks churns out 10 million chopsticks a week to be sold in China.
With growth likely on the horizon at Georgia Chopsticks, more jobs hopefully will come to the town.
New machinery coming to the company will allow it to produce 10 million chopsticks a day, and in March, Georgia Chopsticks hopes to hire 70 more workers, according to the CBS broadcast.
While observing this broadcast, I could hardly contain my glee as I watched loads of chopsticks fall from a conveyer belt into boxes bound for China and stamped with the words “Made in the USA.”
Poor Robert, the bank @took his parents home''............ Read & watch the entire story below.
Robert Stephens graduated from Carleton College (average cost: $42,942/year) in 2010 and now studies law at The George Washington University Law School (average cost: $70,449/year). His father has a Ph.D. and two master’s degrees; his mother also has a master’s degree. Only in America could a kid have been blessed with so much… and only in America could he still claim to be a victim. America’s capitalist society has apparently leveled a grave injustice against his family and Robert will not stand for it.
There’s just one problem: Robert Stephens’ story is (surprise!) completely bogus.
Phone inquiries into the county property records & taxpayer services office reveal that the Stephens family home is not and never has been in foreclosure, that property taxes had been paid in full this year and the remaining balance on their mortgage for the half-million dollar home isless than one year’s worth of tuition+fees at their son’s law school.
The nail in this empty protest‘s coffin is a delightful phone conversation I just had with Robert’s mother, Marquita, where she admitted Chase Bank indeed was not “taking” their home from them. Instead, due to a recent “reduction in income,” they’ve decided to hold a “short sale.”
When I asked Mrs. Stephens if she and her husband planned to stay in their suburban St. Paul, Minn., surroundings after the sale, she told me they weren’t too keen on the idea. The area is “a bit too conservative,” she said.
My brother sent me an article about how Kick Ass Collins women are. A brown bear was about to make Fudge the dog into a a lite snack. Brooke Collins was having no part of that so she ran up to the bear and punched him in the nose. Awesome! Read the story below.
Black bears in residential neighborhoods aren’t exactly unheard of in Juneau. While many people stay inside when bears are about, one local woman says she had a different instinct when she saw her dog was in trouble.
It started out as a typical evening for 22-year-old Brooke Collins. She let her dogs out as usual but this time, she said there was a black bear outside who took hold of her dachshund Fudge. She said she feared for her pet’s life and, in an instant, ran over and punched the bear right in the face to make it let go.
“It was all so fast. All I could think about was my dog was going to die,” said Collins.
“It was a stupid thing but I couldn’t help it,” she said. “I know you’re not supposed to do that but I didn’t want my dog to be killed.”
Collins said she didn’t see the bear outside when she let the dogs out around 7:30 p.m. Sunday. She said Fudge just darted out and the barking could be heard almost instantly. She said that barking was “the most horrible sound in the world.”
Collins said when she looked outside she saw a bear was crouching down with Fudge its paws and was biting the back of the dog’s neck.
“That bear was carrying her like a salmon,” she said.
She said she almost instinctively went up and did the first thing she thought of. She punched the bear’s face and scooped away her dog when it let go.
It all happened too fast to really think about but she had flashes of hearing about how some animals will back off from a punch to the nose, she said.
She said her boyfriend Regan O’Toole came out upon hearing the screaming. O’Toole said the bear already looked startled from being punched at that point. He said the animal went down the driveway and into the bushes to the mountain as he ran toward it.
Her dog suffered some claw and bite marks but they weren’t deep so she said she decided not to take Fudge to the vet. She said the dog appeared to be more shocked than injured. She’s keeping an eye on the marks and will get Fudge checked out if they appear infected.
She said she also got a mark on her thumb from where the bear and Fudge bit her, but it didn’t need medical attention, she said.
Collins said she’s very close to her dogs, which is why she reacted this way. She said after this experience, however, she’ll keep a closer eye on them outside, as she fears an encounter with her other canine, a Pomeranian named Toki.
Collins lives in a neighborhood tucked up against Mount Juneau and uphill from the AWARE shelter. She said black bear sightings are a regular occurrence there. She believes this same one has been around her house many times and is not afraid of people.
She said if this is that bear, it’s definitely used to people and keeps coming back and may even know what days the trash will be out. She said she’s even followed it to take pictures before.
O’Toole said he’s seen five bears in the area this year, including a sow with two cubs.
“We haven’t had any attacks over the years and they’re around all the time,” he said.
Collins said one scary thing in hindsight was the bear’s size, which she said was very large even when it was crouching. O’Toole said it was definitely a large one.
Collins said the whole experience of a physical encounter shook her up, calling the whole thing an eye-opener. She said she’ll be taking a lot more caution from now on and definitely won’t be approaching neighborhood bears.
“It’s definitely changed my opinion because I never thought one would attack my dog,” she said. “I wasn’t in my right mind at the moment but I would never think of doing it again.”
Bear sightings should be reported to the Alaska Department of Fish & Game’s regional office. Call 465-4267 for biologist Neil Barten or 465-4359 for biologist Ryan Scott.
• Contact reporter Jonathan Grass at 523-2276 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Deepak Chopra is still one of my favorite authors today. Ten years ago I was introduced to his book, “The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success,” some of which could apply perfectly to our dating habits. If anything, this will certainly make your love life a more peaceful and less dramatic endeavor (I hope!).
#1: The Law of Giving
Adopting an attitude of giving is not only refreshing but appealing to a potential partner. Now, I am not talking lavish gifts but small tokens like compliments, saying a prayer for someone or something as simple as a flower. I think it is so sweet to focus on what you can give others, and not just about what this person is bringing to you.
#2: The Law of Karma
This is a good one. Karma can be a blessing or a bitch (no, Deepak didn’t say that). Treating everyone with honesty, kindness, respect and how you would like to be treated is so important in the fragile world that can be dating. Try it out – and see what comes back to you.
#3: The Law of Least Effort
Another biggie. Do not try to force something that isn’t there. Do not try to change another person or fit them into any sort of idealized mold. Accepting people for who they are will save you (and them) lots of grief down the road.
#4: The Law of Intention and Desire
Know what your intentions are (what you want) and stay true to your heart. This might be the most important part of this law: If things don’t work out – trust that there is a bigger reason and don’t fight the universe!
#5: The Law of Detachment
If you can practice this one – you are amazing! This one is really about staying in the moment, allowing yourself to be in a fluid place of not knowing what is next, and accepting the situation. Amen!
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