INTERESTING THINGS FOR YOU AT NIGHT PART 2 + 3 (ULTIMATE EXPANSION)
Japan Video Games Blog
TO THOSE WHO DON'T WANT THEIR WORK PROMOTED
We're not making money off the site, nor are we publishing anything to other places through feedburner claiming that it's our work, just a hobby of finding cool things around the internet, that's all. Sometimes we copy and paste too quickly and a link giving you credit doesn't appear, if that's the case and you DO want your work promoted, we will add in the backlink, we would love to give credit where credit is due!
Please contact me or drop a comment on any posts you guys don't want up and I'll take it off within 24 hours, thanks!
Monday, March 24, 2008
Anyone reading this article is probably already ahead of the financial game. Just by showing an interest and initiative tells us that you put more thought into your financial decisions compared to your peers. However, are you making money mistakes without realizing it? We are willing to be that many of you are guilty of one of the five common mistakes below. It’s ok, so are we, but it’s important we learn to avoid these mistakes and milk the most from our money.
1) Anticipate a Large Tax Refund Every Year
Maybe you are one that doesn’t understand the terror that comes with tax season every April, because to you, this time represents a large windfall of cash. As tempting as this may sound, its not the best way for you to be saving. In essence, tax refunds represent an overpayment from you to the government, or an interest free loan (that’s nice of you, however, they would never return the favor).
You are better off having less money taken out of your paychecks bi-weekly and getting your refund dollars as close to $0 as possible. You can do better things with your money than have it sit interest free for a year. At the very least, if normally you would receive a $3,000 refund, consider avoiding this by taking more out of your paychecks and putting this amount in a money market fund (earning around 4% yearly), and accrue an additional $120. I say at the very least, because if this money is invested throughout the year, your return would hopefully increase. Also, let’s face it, it’s hard not to blow a $3,000 check given in a lump sum, but it is easy to save incrementally.
2) Constantly Purchasing Small Items that Add Up to Big Expenses
This may sound strange to many, but it is rare that my wife and I have a transaction during the workweek. Try to avoid daily expenses, although tempting, they add up to unaffordable habits. Here is a quick list of items people tend to buy regularly, that they could do without or find more financial savvy ways to purchase:
1) Coffee/MochaLachaFrachaLala (make at home)
2) Breakfast and lunch on the go (make at home)
3) Magazines, books, and newspapers (subscribe)
4) DVD’s (Netflix and Blockbuster – are you getting your $15/month worth?)
5) Snacks (It’s 3:00pm and your hungry at work, bring something from home and avoid visiting the deli and vending machines.)
3) Not Creating and Living by a Realistic Budget
There is a reason your employer creates a budget ever year – they are in business to make money and you should be too. Creating a budget takes a little time and a few months of tweaking in order to accurately reflect your expenses, but it’s absolutely essential that one is created. Trust me, you cannot keep track of your expenses in your head, and you need to see your monthly purchases laid out in front of you to realize where your money is going and where it should be going. Take the time today and create a budget and give your life some financial structure.
4) Not Participating in an Employer Match Retirement Program
If I guaranteed you 100% on your investments, would you take it? If I said, give me a dollar and I will give you two, would you do it? Of course you would! It’s important to think of your employer match program in this way. By simply agreeing to save a dollar, your employee is agreeing to guarantee a 100% return. Trust me; you will never have a better deal…ever.
5) Taking out Home Equity Loans for the Wrong Reasons
Although home equity loans are becoming less relevant because of the declining housing market and tightening lending standards, home equity loans are still appealing to many. Unlike what your lender will tell you, these loans are not always a good idea.
In the last 6 months, I’ve grown a new appreciation for office politics, 9-5’s, dress codes, and bad managers - at least to the extent that none of them apply to me. I have to admit, there is a pinch of joy in boasting about the flexible and autonomous lifestyle that has come with the entrepreneurial path I’ve chosen to follow. But like everything in this world, working from home has its downsides.
Here’s a list of caveats that I’ve come to discover and that you should expect to encounter if you’ve chosen to lead the work-at-home life as well.
1. You’re always at home
This may seem like an obvious observation but trust me, it’ll hit you after your first week of working at home. Consider this: your buddies wake up in the morning, get dressed, take a drive, get to the office, have some lunch, get back on the road, and then return home. Meanwhile, you’ve been there the whole time. This may seem like a sweet deal at first, but you may find yourself growing a bit tired of the environment - you are, after all, there 24/7.
No matter how great of a work environment you’ve set up for yourself, a static environment can sometimes suck the life out of you. This pain point hits home the hardest at the end of the day when you’re simply dying to get out. The problem is, your buddies are all relieved to finally be back home and don’t have the energy to head out to the bar with you. Suddenly a drive out to the gas station is a major treat.
2. You’re always at work
The opposite and often eviler side of the coin. From the moment you wake up to the moment you hit the sack, you’re at work. When you literally live at work, it makes it nearly impossible to ever escape it. Add on to it the fact that you’re a workaholic anyway, then you’ll find yourself doing a lot of overtime.
I vaguely remember the comfort of leaving the office and returning home to my personal computer and simply browsing the internet liesurely or chatting the night away on IM. Now when I’m bored, I make websites. Or I organize my finances. Or I work on some other projects. The truth is, there is always an infinite amount of things to do, and without being able to physically detach yourself from them, you’ll just keep on working. You never quite leave the office, so you never quite know when to call it quits. Great for productivity, crappy for your spirit.
3. Is anybody there?
The answer is no. Well, your mother could be home. As could your budgy named Snowy. But they’re not the people you were looking for or the people you may find you miss the most after working at home for some time. Who you’re looking for are the guys by the watercooler, the colleagues you pass in the hallways, the people you see in the cafeteria, and even the receptionist at the front desk. And unless your mother follows Lost as religiously as you do (or even if she does), you tend to miss out a bit on the personal interaction and comaraderie that comes with an office job.
4. Self-control sold separately
My guitar is always within arm’s reach. I have a collection of How I Met Your Mother, Grey’s Anatomy, and Lost episodes ready to be enjoyed. TVtropolis has made daytime television worth watching again (hoorah for reruns of classic sitcoms).
These are but a few distractions that make working from home slightly difficult sometimes. It can often be like working at a toy store (let’s ignore my action figures and pretend this is just a metaphor) - when you’re surrounded by toys, you can’t help but play with them a little. Counter-productive? Yes. But with nobody breathing down your neck, it makes it morally easy to write it off.
5. “While you’re home, can you…”
This winter, Toronto has seen 3 big snow falls already. What’s become apparent from this is that working from home does not exempt me from shoveling the snow. It also doesn’t excuse me from doing laundry, cleaning, or occasional drives out to the grocery store.
While not being able to escape household responsibilities is more likely a result of living with your parents, it is certainly magnified when you work from home. This can have a toll on your work, even if it means just taking a moment to explain that you’ll do it after you’re done work. If your parents are like mine, you’ll have to explain it again in 5 minutes. Then again, you probably don’t live with your parents.
Don’t get me wrong, I love working at home!
From this post alone, working at home probably seems like a torturous, painful, and tiresome form of entrepreneurial hell. To be honest, it can be sometimes. But these feelings are far and few in between, and there are definitely easy remedies to cure some of these blues. I just wanted to give those considering the work-at-home lifestyle the heads up that it’s not all fun and games (or that sometimes it is, and that’s not good either).
My next post will focus on how to fend off these downers and make the most of your freedom from the corporate world. Stay tuned!
PERFECT DAY FOR A WOMAN:
8:15 Wake up to hugs and kisses.
8:30 Weigh 5 lbs. lighter than yesterday.
8:45 Breakfast in bed, fresh squeezed orange juice and croissants.
9:15 Soothing hot bath with fragrant lilac bath oil.
10:00 Light workout at club with handsome, funny personal trainer.
10:30 Facial, manicure, shampoo, and comb out.
12:00 Lunch with best friend at an outdoor cafe.
12:45 Notice ex-boyfriend's wife, she has gained 30 lbs..
1:00 Shopping with friends.
4:00 A dozen roses delivered by florist. Card is from a secret admirer.
4:15 Light workout at club followed by a gentle massage
5:30 Pick outfit for dinner. Primp before mirror.
7:30 Candlelight dinner for two followed by dancing.
10:00 Hot shower. Alone.
10:30 Make love.
11:00 Pillow talk, light touching and cuddling.
11:15 Fall asleep in his big, strong arms.
PERFECT DAY FOR A MAN: 6:00 Alarm.
6:30 Massive dump while reading the sports section.
7:00 Breakfast. Filet Mignon, eggs, toast and coffee.
7:30 Limo arrives.
7:45 Bloody Mary en route to airport.
8:15 Private jet to Augusta, Georgia.
9:30 Limo to Augusta National Golf Club.
9:45 Play front nine at Augusta, finish 2 under par.
11:45 Lunch. 2 dozen oysters on the half shell. 3 Heinekens.
12:30 Play back nine at Augusta, finish 4 under par.
2:15 Limo back to airport. Drink 2 Bombay martinis.
2:30 Private jet to Nassau, Bahamas. Nap.
3:15 Late afternoon fishing excursion with topless female crew.
4:30 Catch world record light tackle marlin-1249 lbs.
5:00 Jet back home. En route, get massage from naked supermodel.
7:00 Watch CNN Newsflash. Clinton resigns.
7:30 Dinner. Lobster appetizers, 1963 Dom Perignon, 20 Oz. New York strip.
9:00 Relax after dinner with 1789 Augler Cognac and Cohiba Cuban cigar.
10:00 Have sex with two 18 year old nymphomaniacs.
11:00 Massage and Jacuzzi.
11:45 Go to bed.
11:50 Let loose a 12 second, 4 octave fart. Watch the dog leave the room.
11:55 Laugh yourself to sleep.
I was a little bored this afternoon, and I decided to see how long I could hold out if I were forced to work for minimum wage while keeping my current standard of living. Big surprise, it turns out I would be eating into my emergency fund almost as soon as I took the “pay cut”. So that got me wondering, just how far do you have to stretch a dollar to live off of minimum wage in today’s economy? I crunched some numbers to see just difficult it is to get by when you’re forced to live off a low income.
For the purpose of this exercise, I’m going to pretend I’m single (sorry, sweetie!) and in good health. For my location, I randomly chose Hartford, CT. Minimum wage in Connecticut is currently $7.65 an hour. Forty hours a week at $7.65 an hour works out to $306 a week, or roughly $1224 a month. So do you think it’s possible to put a roof over your head, feed yourself, buy clothing and find transport for a little over a grand a month? Let’s find out.
Finding housing is a challenge. I’ll be honest, I pay more in rent per month than what minimum wage pays each month. So I was surprised when I found a studio apartment for $395, which includes heat. When you’re living in New England, heat included with your rent is a huge deal. But that still leaves electric ($50), phone ($30), and water ($20). So with housing out of the way, how much does that leave us for the rest of the month?
$495 - (Housing)
Figuring out what you should spend on food when money is tight is tough. Right off the bat, eating out is out of the question. But what do you spend on groceries? One the one hand, you can eat beans and rice every night, or you can try and spice up your meals with vegetables and meat. Ground beef and chicken is still cheap, and large bags of frozen vegetables go a long way. I would make a conservative estimate that groceries for absolute bare necessities would run about $30 a week, or about $120 a month.
$120 - (Food)
I’ll be realistic here. Most people earning minimum wage probably don’t go on shopping sprees every month. But that doesn’t stop people from wearing through shoes, pants, shirts, sweaters, and jackets. I’m going to set aside an extremely conservative $25 a month to spend on clothing in a consignment shop.
$50 - (Clothing)
Transportation is tricky. If you live in a large enough metro area, you can probably get by without a car and simply rely on the bus or subway to get around. But if you live in a more rural area (such as our example Hartford, CT), you’re going to need a car. I would hesitate to take on a car payment at this level of income, but the reality is that if you are earning around $14,000 a year, you probably don’t have any savings to purchase a car outright. Most likely, you’ll drive a high mileage car that you’re paying around $100 a month in loan payments. Tack on insurance ($20 a month), and gas ($200 a month), and you’re looking at $320 a month for transportation.
$320 - (Transportation)
Now that we have the four core requirements to surviving on your own, what about miscellaneous expenses? Little nickel and dime expenses add up, and they add up quick. It doesn’t take much to spend your $239 remainder every month on non-budgeted expenses. What happens if your car breaks down? Or if you need to see a doctor? Even buying supplies for your home can wipe out your finances. And forget about spending cash on entertainment, the money just isn’t there for that.
Living on minimum wage is living below the line of poverty. While raising the minimum wage would theoretically improve the quality of life for many, it’s a double edged sword. If you raise the minimum amount employers can pay employees, stores and companies will have to raise the prices of their goods and services to compensate. So effectively, an increase in minimum wage would erase workers wages through greater expenses.
Minimum wage doesn’t work, but how do we fix it?
Sadly, it looks like the Chairman of the Federal Reserve ignored my open letter last week and decided to cut the federal funds rate by three quarters of a point to 2.25%. Of course, if you’re watching the news right now, everyone is saying that this dramatic cut is a good thing. After all, the Dow is surging on this supposedly great news. By cutting the interest rate, the Federal Reserve has pleased Wall Street investors.
But each time Ben Bernanke calls for a rate cut, he is helping destroy lower and middle class Americans. How is this possible? With each rate cut, inflation gets worse. What does that mean to you and me? Diminished savings, more expensive gas, and a greater costs of everyday goods.
Do you have a savings account? If you do, odds are that it is paying a little over 3% APY. Now that the Federal Reserve has lowered the federal funds rate to 2.25%, expect to see the interest rate on your savings account plummet over the next few days. What does this mean to you? Less interest earned on your savings (and thereby less money in your pocket).
More expensive gas
Do you think filling up at the pump hurts at $3.50 a gallon? Give it a few weeks, and watch as prices pass $4.00. Why does this happen? Oil (what gas is made from) is traded in U.S. dollars. As the Federal Reserve lowers the federal funds rate, the dollar is devalued through inflation. So yesterday’s dollar is worth more than today’s. Right now, a barrel of oil is trading at about $110. Don’t act surprised when the price of oil, and thus gasoline, reaches new highs over the next few weeks.
Greater costs of everyday goods
Because the value of the dollar is dropping from inflation, imported goods from China, Mexico and other countries are getting more and more expensive everyday. To make matters worse, the price of gas is trickling down throughout the economy to affect common items such as groceries and clothing. Compare your grocery bill to what you were paying last year. Odds are you are paying a lot more for a gallon of milk than you did in the past.
The bottom line
So next time you see Wall Street cheering because of a drop in the federal funds rate, stop and think about whether you should be cheering as well. What’s good for Wall Street is not necessarily good for Joe Sixpack. Over the past six months, inflation has been soaring, and yet the average family’s income has remained the same. If the Ben Bernanke and the Federal Reserve keep cutting rates at the pace they have been, it’s going to get very ugly out there.
A few weeks ago I ran into an old friend that I have not seen in years. He has a terrific job at a large media company where he is highly respected and well paid. He has a very pretty wife, two healthy children, and a second home being built near the beach.
He has money, health, security, family, etc…but all he wanted to talk about was his frequent trips to Las Vegas where he does…well, lets just say he does seem pretty terrible things which really should “stay in Vegas”.
It was apparent that all his external success is not translating to internal fulfillment. He has done everything perfectly right according to societal standards, yet can not seem to find real satisfaction in his life. He goes to Vegas for what he calls a “release”; although I would more accurately call it an “escape”.
Internal Purpose vs. External Purpose
Isn’t the scenario above pretty common nowadays, and how many people do you know that fit this bill? My buddy is making the same error that way too many people are making, and that is searching for fulfillment on the outside first and then expecting it to transpire on the inside second.
My friends, it just does not work this way. No matter how much external possessions and material you have, it will never translate to inner happiness.
You must first make the commitment to be happy internally. To do this you must garner a genuine understanding of who you really are. Although this can be hard work, and is certainly a different path then what most people follow in our society, it is the only way you can attain true happiness:
“Finding and living in alignment with the inner purpose is the foundation for fulfilling your outer purpose. It is the basis for true success. Without that alignment, you can still achieve certain things through effort, struggle, determination and sheer hard work or cunning. But there is no joy in such an endeavor, and it invariably ends in some form of suffering”.
- Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth
Therefore we must put aside societal pressures and find our internal purpose first. Once we are able to do this, our external purpose flows as an extension of it.
Seeking Internal Purpose Leads To…
When you start becoming aware of your inner purpose, it is incredible what happens. Many of the shackles of modern-day culture suddenly disappear, and you feel free and light. People around may even tell you that you are “glowing”.
This happens because you learn to let go of all the ridiculous expectations others have of you, and also rid your mind of self-deprecating thoughts. Ask yourself: how much more powerful of a person would you be if you freed yourself of all the societal constructs that keep you in place?
How do you think my friend above would answer this question? This is not to say that you can not have kids, a wife, and a stable career. On the contrary, when you search for and find internal purpose first the things you want to happen externally become a reality anyway.
But when you do it the right way, the external results are a physical manifestation of the internal intelligence…and this makes all the difference.
Here are 5 important steps for manifesting internal purpose:
1. Ask yourself the question “what do I really want in life”?
Most people are too afraid to ask themselves this question, and I find this totally insane! To me it is perhaps the most important one to ask in all of life, and is the first step to uncovering your true purpose.
2. Make a practice of sitting in silence
The reason why most people are not in touch with their true purpose is that they either don’t know it exists OR they don’t know how to listen. Sitting in silence is an excellent way to have your truest purpose manifest. Every day spend at least 20 minutes in stillness and get in touch with your intuition.
3. Become a seeker of people and information
There are so many individuals out there who are experiencing higher levels of consciousness and so many books that talk about uncovering truer meaning in life, that you are doing yourself a disservice by not finding them and learning from them.
4. Create outlets where you monitor your progress
One of the main reasons I started this blog was so I could have an outlet for my quest to find true purpose in life. You don’t have to start a blog and be as public about it as I, but what about writing in a journal? Perhaps writing a letter or series of letters to old teachers might help. Be creative about finding your inherent voice!
5. Be OK with the initial struggle
As you first start down this path, your practicality (ego) may resist your internal purpose. That is OK, accept that it is a struggle. Soon it won’t be, and you will be living externally in full alignment with the internal. That is called living a life of dreams…
It is never too late to start looking inside. I look forward to your comments and emails…
Picture above by photographer extraordinaire Jane Feldman. And yes, that picture is of me in Costa Rica a few weeks ago!
Tibet, Potala palace2.jpg (JPEG Image, 800x600 pixels)
By Dr. Ben Kim on November 19, 2007
This article outlines simple eye exercises and acupressure points that you can use to reduce eyestrain and support optimal vision.
To reduce eyestrain and experience optimal vision, two major requirements are as follows:
- The six muscles that move each of your eyes need to be strong and relaxed.
- You must have strong and steady blood flow to your eyes and to the muscles that control your eyes.
The six muscles that control all of your eye movements are as follows:
- Lateral rectus - Primarily moves the eye outward, away from your nose.
- Medial rectus - Primarily moves the eye inward, toward your nose.
- Superior rectus - Primarily moves the eye upward.
- Inferior rectus - Primarily moves the eye downward.
- Superior oblique - Primarily rotates the top of the eye toward your nose.
- Inferior oblique - Primarily rotates the top of the eye away from your nose.
Perhaps the single greatest reason why people in today's society suffer from chronic eyestrain and deteriorating vision is the amount of time that is spent staring at computer monitors and television screens.
Your eyes are designed to move regularly, and regular movement of your eyes is what promotes optimal blood flow and nerve function to your eyes and the six muscles that control your eye movements.
What follows are several simple eye exercises that you can do on a regular basis to keep your eyes and vision as healthy as possible:
- Look as far to your right as possible for 3-5 seconds, then as far to your left as possible for 3-5 seconds. Rest for a few seconds, then repeat this sequence several times.
Look as far up as possible for 3-5 seconds, then look as far down as possible for 3-5 seconds. Rest for a few seconds, then repeat this sequence several times.
Slowly roll your eyes in a circle, first clockwise, then counter-clockwise. Rest for a few seconds, then repeat this sequence several times. Be sure to roll slowly - it should take at least 3 seconds for you to roll your eyes in a full circle.
Hold a pen in front of you, about an arm's length away. Focus your vision on the tip of your pen for 3-5 seconds, then shift the focus of your vision to an object that is farther away for 3-5 seconds. The greater the distance between your pen and the distant object, the better. If you are indoors, look out a window to find a distant object to focus your vision on. Repeat this sequence of going back and forth between your pen and a distant object several times.
Just for interest's sake, this exercise is routinely used by professional baseball players to optimize visual acuity, which is essential for the hand-eye coordination that is needed to play pro ball.
Please note that all of these exercises should be done with your eyes, not your head and neck. In other words, keep your head and neck still while you take your eyes through the movements described above.
If you would like more comprehensive guidance on how to improve and protect your vision as you age, I highly recommend that you read:
This is an outstanding book that offers a comprehensive array of exercises and information that can help you support your vision. And if you wear eyeglasses or contacts, following the guidance provided in this book may actually help you do away with your prescription eye wear. I started following some of the recommendations in this book several months ago, and the prescription for my eyeglasses has gone from -2.5 to -2.0 diopters in both eyes in that time. My hope is that when our children are a bit older and I am able to experience the joy of getting regular sleep again, I may be able to get to a point where I can do away with my glasses for good. I'm also hopeful that doing these exercises can help both of our sons avoid having to wear prescription eye wear in the future.
Beyond doing the exercises described above on a regular basis, another way to reduce eyestrain and promote your best vision is to use your fingers to apply gentle pressure to three acupressure points that can help to promote healthy blood flow to your eyes and the muscles that surround your eyes.
The best such acupressure points are as follows:
BL-2 is located under the innermost section of each of your eyebrows, in the top-inner region of each of your orbital sockets. When pressing on this point, you should feel direct contact with the bony surface of your orbital socket.
Good pictures of this point and how to apply pressure to it can be found on pages 90 and 91 of Acupressure's Potent Points: a Guide to Self-Care for Common Ailments
For those with knowledge of human anatomy: Application of pressure to BL-2 is meant to stimulate optimal blood flow and nerve function to the tendon of the superior oblique muscle, a number of smaller muscles that surround the orbital cavity, branches of the frontal branch of the trigeminal nerve, and branches of the supratrochlear and supraorbital arteries.
Stomach-2 and Stomach-3 (St-2, St-3)
St-2 and St-3 are located under the midline of each of your eyes. St-2 is about one finger-width under each eye, while St-3 is located at the bottom of each of your cheekbones. These points are described together because it is quite simple to apply pressure to both of them at the same time on both sides of your face by using your index and middle fingers.
Good pictures of these points and how to apply pressure to them can be found on pages 90 and 91 of Acupressure's Potent Points: a Guide to Self-Care for Common Ailments
For those with knowledge of human anatomy: Application of pressure to these points is meant to stimulate optimal blood flow and nerve function to the infraorbital nerve, branches of the facial nerve, and branches of the facial and infraorbital arteries and a number of muscles below and within the orbital sockets.
Please note: before self-administering acupressure, it is always best to consult with your doctor to make sure that there are no contraindications to doing so.
While there are a number of online resources that display pictures of different acupuncture points, I highly recommend the acupressure book mentioned above because it provides clear pictures on how to apply pressure to each point.
If you work with a computer on a daily basis, and you haven't read through a two-part article that I wrote a while back on how to stay healthy in the computer era, I recommend that you view that article here: How to Protect Your Health in the Computer Era - this article provides several practical tips on how to protect your eyesight while working with computers.
Looks like that two month extension XM and Sirius gave each on the merger deal paid off after all -- federal regulators have finally approved the $5B deal. The Department of Justice's Antitrust division says that after "thorough and careful review" (we'll say -- it's been over a year), it's determined that allowing the two satellite radio companies to merge "is not likely to harm consumers." The deciding factor appeared to be the proprietary hardware needed to receive both XM and Sirius; since consumers who shell out aren't likely to switch, the DOJ doesn't think the marketplace is all that competitive to begin with, which makes the impact of a merger relatively small. In fact, the DOJ thinks the merger could actually benefit consumers, who might see lower prices as the result of more efficient operations, broader programming options, and faster rollouts of new technology. Of course, it's not all over yet -- the FCC still has to weigh in, but it's largely expected to follow the Justice Department's lead here.
Happiness is a by-product of being true to ourselves. The fact is, many people are not being true to themselves. They are true to other people, or beliefs and philosophies that do not serve them. In my lifetime, I have spent a great deal of time and energy trying to please other people. In the end, I pleased no one - not even myself - until I dramatically altered my thinking and learned how to live, fully, in the present moment.
Living in the present moment is a habitual way of thinking and acting that must be practiced and developed like any other life-affirming skill. If you look at your own life and see the times when you were not happy, chances are that you were upset because you were chewing on the old bones from your past. Perhaps you were also worried about the future. Worrying about the future and chewing on "old bones" from your past have little value to offer you other than to cause you to be upset, anxious or stressed out.
You should think about the future only long enough to see if there is anything you can do in the present moment to make sure your future turns out the way you want it to turn out. The moment your thoughts about the future turn into "worry thought" that is telling you there is nothing you can do about the future, right now! It also tells you that you are living in the future rather than being fully present in the moment of now.
What are the roadblocks to living in the present moment? Our physical bodies always live in the present moment, but often times, our minds live elsewhere. How many times have you been in meeting, physically present, but you found your mind wandering off to other places? How many times have you listened to a speaker and found your mind drifting off to somewhere else? How many times have you had a conversation with someone, but you were not really present with them? These are all incidents of not living fully in the moment.
If we cannot get our minds to be where our bodies are, it causes us to feel pressure and stress. The solution is to bring our minds back to where our bodies are located. If we cannot bring our minds back to our bodies, then I suggest that we take our bodies to where our minds are located. A simple example: Your body is in church, but your mind is out fishing at your favorite stream or lake. If your mind refuses to come back to church, then go to the lake and meet your God there. The moment our bodies and minds are both located in the same place at the same time, we are fully present. And it is only in the present moment where we will find the true happiness we seek.
This Jet Powered VW Beetle is powered by two engines (original up front, jet in back) and is perfectly street legal since you’re only using the gasoline powered engine in normal driving conditions. But if you’re feeling adventurous, fire up the jet engine - which spins up to 26,000 rpm/13,000 rpm idle - and watch the afterburner come to life.
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On Marijuana Growing In Canada: New 10 Billion Dollar Cash Crop Puts Vancouver On The Map | Better Health News
On Marijuana Growing In Canada: New 10 Billion Dollar Cash Crop Puts Vancouver On The Map
January 27th, 2008 · 7 Comments
I was at a conference last week and was discussing the boom in the real estate market in Vancouver, BC. I was amazed at how many new high rise apartments and condos that were going up, many right on the waterfront. And they weren’t cheap!
Even with the Winter Olympics slated to happen there soon, I couldn’t help but wonder what would sustain that type of spending past that event.
I was already well aware that Vancouver has become a famous Asian hub. Just my trip through customs demonstrated that I was in the very minority of who was traveling that day. With relaxed immigration laws, money flowed easily from the Orient into BC. But was that it?
Damian, a resident of the area, stated that although the Asian money was and is a factor, you just can’t beat the sheer buying power of a $10 Billion Dollar cash crop pouring into the area. I’m not talking about all of Canada. I’m speaking about British Columbia alone. That cash crop is marijuana.
Damian stated that it’s not that it’s legal to grow marijuana here, there just isn’t any major pressure to control or regulate this; he states the authorities look the other way.
So the money flows without fear from legal hassles for growing for your own personal use or growing to sell. He states that many people expanding their living space just to grow this. And with the profits, people are investing that back into real estate.
Hummm…This one industry has put a major boost to the local economy. Interesting enough…when I was there, I didn’t notice anyone smoking it, nor did I notice the smell. So, use of it not openly defiant.
|I wonder if more Americans knew that, would we have more crossing the border or attempting to become citizens just to start a marijuana growing business where it’s not illegal?|
The decline in the buying power of the American dollar has been never more evident than in Canada. I used to trade up 1 dollar Canadian for 70 cents US. Now it’s about 1 to 1 - that loss of buying power occurred in 13 years. And with many boomers facing retirement, that loss of buying power is not good.
With medical marijuana’s passage in selected states, the government is now clearly identified as being a ‘dope dealer’. The question is how far will this go? I’ve talked with many people that have to do with the legal system who feel that it should be decriminalized. Why? Costs!
The jails and prisons are overfull with many other offenses, including real drug crimes related to meth, crack, heroin, alcohol and narcotic analgesics, and is buckling under the rising burden of sex related crimes. The time and energy spent processing and prosecuting these marijuana related cases could be better spent elsewhere.
Yet others say, crime is crime.
With states like California having a serious budget crisis, much of that due to the burgeoning legal and social welfare system (and the 3 strike law), and states like Michigan already way over budget with allocations of $2 Billion Dollars to service 55,000 inmates, well, the pot (no pun intended) will run dry sooner or later…and hard choices will have to be made. One of those may be decriminalizing marijuana usage.
I doubt the US will ever go as far as Canada has gone.
However $10 Billion Dollars, no matter how you slice it, would have a major impact on a LOCAL economy, be it California or Michigan, or as it’s currently having in British Columbia.
There is tremendous pressure to allow the growing of hemp in the US again. This crop has no pharmaceutical use, as there are no psychoactive substances in it. However it is a great source of protein and omega fatty acids, and a great source of fiber not only for the body. This fiber is has industrial uses; it’s used in making clothes, rope and paper. And, this crop can be grown literally anywhere without the need of pesticides or herbicides.
I recently came across an article on the use of vending machines in Los Angeles to deliver medical marijuana. It’s an interesting read on the hoops it takes to get it. It requires fingerprinting and a special access card.Is this a sign of things yet to come?
Let me know what you think!
The HTC 730 phone concept looks really interesting because it allows you to use thelike a traditional slider , while also allowing you to it into a mobile information input device with a full . Voila. You still have all the benefits of the S730 smartphone, the same display size, but in a smaller package and are based on a recent patent filing by .
After looking at a patent filing from HTC the folks over at Unwired View feel that they have a good idea what the new HTCmay look like below:
10) Axe Body Spray
Perhaps the douchiest of all the body sprays, Axe's scent alone wouldn't be enough to push it into the top 10, but coupled with a marketing campaign specifically tailored to douche bags, it squeezes its way in. Spray this on your body and women will drop what they're doing and flock to you. Watch the commercial and buy this product, and intelligent people will assume you're an a-hole.
9) Spray on Tan
If you're a white male you just have to accept the fact that you're going to be pasty white for about eight months of the year and alternate between sunburned and tan for the other four. But, assuming you refuse to bend to god's will, you can always spray your tan on like it's time to cheer Syracuse to a national title. Once you start looking like C Thomas Howell in Soul Man it's pretty much a bronze beacon to the rest of the world that you are one steaming pile of douche.
8) Watches with an Enormous Face
If you're going to wear a watch, there's a simple bell-curve of functionality versus size that needs to be adhered to. After a certain point your watch becomes so large it ceases to be merely a functional time telling device and transforms into a giant gaudy douchometer that's constantly pinging "hot." Unless you're Dick Tracy or Randy Jackson, you probably just look like a little kid that stole his dad's watch in a desperate attempt to impress all his friends.
7) Puka Shell Necklaces
Although only the first link in the popped collar/white hat trifecta, the puka shell necklace is still a strong stand alone sign of douchiness. Unless you're a Hawaii native there's really no way to justify adding this little piece of island flair to your classy khaki and pink polo shirt ensemble.
6) Calvin Peeing on Anything
This co-opted image from the beloved comic strip offers a creative way to voice an opinion on issues ranging from brand superiority all the way to environmental consciousness. Unfortunately, just because Calvin is peeing on global warming doesn't mean it'll magically reduce the emissions on your beat up Jeep Cherokee.
5) Barbed Wire Tattoos
Maybe there was a time when a barbed wire tattoo really meant something; a golden era of manliness where getting one was an initiation into a tough-guy society and everyone sat around talking about chest hair, motor oil, and mixed martial arts. Sadly, if there ever was a time like that, it's long passed, and now a barbed wire tattoo is nothing more than a razor sharp reminder to the rest of the world that you are a douche bag.
4) A Set of Balls for Your Truck
The trailer hitch doppelganger of a pissing Calvin sticker, "Your Nutz" are the ideal vehicle accessory for any guy who decides a V8 Hemi is still a little too subtle. Giving your truck its own set of balls makes a bold statement about the type of life you lead. It says "I'm not afraid to let it all hang out." It says "I've got stones" and "Convention be damned, I do what I want." But most importantly, it tells everyone else on the road to watch out for the asshole in the pickup that spent twenty-five bucks on a fake pair of balls.
3) Female Body Inspector T-Shirts
It's an acronym for guys who are only vaguely aware of what an acronym is. Although one of the douchier t-shirts around, you could really expand the FBI shirt to encompass any "I'm on spring break" type slogan, including "one tequila, two tequila, three tequila...floor" and all paraphernalia with the shocker on it.
2) Bluetooth Headsets
While the technology is useful, the application pretty much consists of causing public disruptions and walking around leaving a verbal fart trail of self-importance in your wake. The one caveat to this might be the surprisingly large percentage of Bluetooth users that look like they're dirt poor and yet are sporting a shiny new headset to field the incoming calls on their cellphone that's been "temporarily disconnected." Either way though, the only distinction would be giant uppercase yuppie Douche Bag or broke-ass lowercase d-bag.
There are some things that should be accepted as basic fact, and one of them is that most guys love their penis. That being said, there's really no reason to go out of your way to advertise this to the rest of the world. Unless you're the type of guy that's tired of waiting two whole seconds for people to decipher the double entendre on your Big Johnson t-shirt, you might want to just keep quiet about your affinity for your own genitalia. Pins, magnets, and even air-fresheners sharing your founding member status in a fan club of one is only tipping people off that they're dealing with a Grade-A douche bag.