Saturday, May 30, 2009

Dell Computer Customer Service Sucks

God, I don't even want to go through the whole stupid story. But Dell really sucks at customer service. I needed a new hard drive for my laptop. I ordered a new one from their website. The website said it would fit my laptop. When it arrived, I tried it, and it did not fit.

They will take the hard drive back, but I am even without a phone because my phone service was with skype, which is internet based. No computer means no phone either. And they will not refund the shipping costs. And I don't have money to order a new hard drive. So, it will take about two weeks to be credited for the first hard drive. And once I have that I can order another one, hopefully the correct one. Then I'll have to wait for the new hard drive to be shipped out to me. So, it's going to be another month still before my laptop is working again.

It's all a friggin pain beyond belief. Unless you have unlimited resources to waste, I suggest you avoid buying Dell products.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

700 Club Style

Getting my life back on track is expensive. Send a donation and God will Bless you in a very special way!

I Hate This Kind Of Thing

I ordered a new hard drive. They sent the wrong one, it doesn't fit my laptop. Will have to send that one back and get another, hopefully the right one this time. Seems it will be several more weeks before the laptop is up and running again.

Having to use the public computers in the mean time. Not very fun.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

It's The Hard Drive Alright

Well, I checked with the Dell website and did everything prescribed to determine the problem with my laptop. The hard drive is fried, dead, kaput. A replacement hard drive, with shipping and all, will cost $120.

Dell accepts payments from Paypal. So, if anyone wants to make a donation towards a new hard drive for my laptop, you can do so with my paypal link. And I can purchase online, here on the library computers.

Until such time as I can fix my laptop, my internet use will be limited to the times I can get up here to the library, and the one hour limit on library computer use.

This just might spell the end of my internet ramblings. It was fun most of the time. I got a lot out of it. I hope you did too.

Thanks for reading.

Kevin

Monday, May 11, 2009

Hard Drive Issue

Saturday, my computer came down with a problem. Error Code 2000-0141 No Hard Drive Found.

I've been doing some research and there might be a fix. I'll give it a try. But my online time is going to be drastically limited for a while cause of this. It was a refurbished computer.

The laptop is just over a year old, and I have been putting about 10 hours a day (and often more) on it. So, it may have just given up the ghost.

Want to help me get a new one?

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

When I Was A Child

The brightly colored plastic ball rolls between my 4 year old son, and me. It's a simple game. But it's done with purpose. Not only is it helping my son develop hand and eye coordination, and not only are we having a shared experience and thus developing interpersonal bonds, there is also another useful dynamic at play to help my son develop into a whole person.

It is inevitable that eventually the ball will get away from both of us. And when this happens a new game is enacted – the game of, “who can get to the ball first.” Sure, my two and a half foot tall son might be at a slight disadvantage to my almost six foot tall self, but that's not the point. The point is all about setting a goal, and achieving it. As my son and I race to the ball, making all sorts of noisy effort and claims to “I'm gonna get the ball first,” I purposely lay back and allow my son to grab the ball first, sometimes to within just a fraction of a second of my reaching the ball. As my son grabs up the ball, he looks at me and squeals with delight. He has experienced the exhilaration of success at achieving a goal. Such experiences are great for anyone, but in children such experiences are tantamount to raising a child who believes in himself and in his ability to succeed.

Such events did not take place in my own childhood. As was expressed by my father on many occasions, he was teaching me how to be a good loser. I think what he meant to say that was that he was attempting to teach me how to be a gracious loser. But that was not what he achieved. Instead, what he instilled in me was a belief that I could not succeed, at anything. I also recognized, even at a very early age, that my father was very competitive, and having the need to win at everything. So, as a dutiful and loving son, I took it upon myself to acquiesce to my fathers needs and desires. If ever there was a challenge between us, I felt obligated to allow him to win. Instead of teaching me to be a good loser, he taught me to be a loser.

My father was more of a physical competitor, he played a lot of sports. And although he had but an average physique, he excelled at most every event he attempted. Certainly, his desire to be a winner served him well enough. But at other games he was not so talented. He owned a chess set, and looking back at it now, his covetedness for this chess set was a bit beyond the norm. When I was little, my father brought out the set fairly often. But as I, and my old brother, grew older, he brought out the chess set less and less. Still, my father would play both my brother and myself at chess. At first he taught us the basic moves, and then we began playing actual games. And each and every time we played, he won, of course. The older I got, the less interested I was in playing the game. When you are 6 or 8 or 10 years of age, you tend to reject those challenges at which you never succeed. Still, it would happen that I'd get bored, and in the hopes of having some quality time with my ever increasingly distant father, I would challenge him to game of chess.

I was in my early teens when we played our final game together. It didn't last long. Perhaps 10 moves into the game I saw a miracle, a winning move to which there was no way he, with his fairly limited knowledge of the game, would see coming. And I did the unthinkable. I made that move. I won the game. My father was so surprised by the loss that he just stared at the board – at first trying to see a move out of checkmate, most of the pieces were still in play, and then trying to see just how I arrived at the win. The price for beating my father was steep. As much as I was thrilled at finally winning a chess game against an adult, and against my very competitive father, I had also managed to push my father away from me, even farther away than he already was.

The idea that to maintain relationships, or at least to keep other people happy, I had to sabotage my own attempts at success was not something I was conscientious of. But, as I survey my life, I can see it in play at every turn. Even, and especially, in my divorce with my wife of 6 years. I thought I was doing the right thing by letting her dictate the terms. But all I did was allow her to walk all over me.
As a father myself, I made a very conscious effort to not make the same mistakes my father did with me. I poured all the love I could muster on my children. Every moment with them was a learning or loving moment. I did everything I could to instill in my children a sense of happiness and self worth and ability.

The one thing though, that I did not expect was my ex-wife's efforts to completely eradicate me from my children's lives after the divorce. But, as a dutiful loser, especially to those I loved the most, I was consigned to the misery of losing everything and everyone most dear to me.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

The Sacredness Of Questioning Everything


David Dark's book, "The Sacredness Of Questioning Everything," is now available for purchase at Amazon.com.

But, if you are strapped for cash, or would like to get a real taste of this book before committing money to it, you can, for a limited time, get a FREE download of the full book in audio at Zondervan.com

Sure, I could tell you that this book is a world shaker, but I can see you questioning that statement. I guess it's best to let you make up your own mind. But, don't make up your mind until you have something in your mind to make.

And, if so inspired, check out David and Sarah's blog at
Peer Pressure Is Forever

Nothingness Is Selfishness

When faced with a conflict of interests with others, we can either insist that our interests take precedent over others, or we can work towards a way where all interests can be satisfied. I think Christ calls us to the latter.

I used to believe that Christ called us to subjugate our self interests to the interests of others. And to some extent I still believe that. But, I found it near impossible to do that. So, instead, I let my life devolve to the point where I had very few, if any, interests. I considered this to be a selfless act. But really, I was using this as a way to hide from a difficult world ~ which is a very selfish thing to do.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Anxious

Of all the ways homeless people are different from each other, they also possess a few traits that are very similar.

One of the major factors that lead me to a life of homelessness was social anxiety. When I had the epiphany about my own issues with social anxiety I began a search for info. I found that many of the websites offering info, definitions and causes, listed "overbearing parents" as a primary source. I also began a personal survey of all the significant events in my life. And I traced incidences of social anxiety in my life all the way back to kindergarten. I know that my parents were, indeed, "overbearing." Of course my own vocabulary would label my parents as "assholes." But, I'm less PC about certain aspects of life. I think my terminology is more exact. My parents behavior towards me caused me to retreat from social activities, and to fear all people in general. And, this lead to all sorts of developmental issues for myself. Because I lived most of my childhood in a shell, I missed many significant opportunities for personal growth. And, because of this it was inevitable that when I reached adult age, that I would lack the skills necessary for becoming in independent and self reliant adult.

When I look at the whole population of homeless people, I see a striking similarity. I imagine that if properly surveyed most homeless people would be found to suffer from social anxiety. If it were possible to sneak Paxil, an anti social anxiety drug, into the diets of homeless people, I imagine that in a short amount of time we'd see a significant drop in homelessness.

In all my many years of homelessness, I have yet to meet a chroncially homeless person who was not abused in some way by his/her parents. To reduce future homeless populations, we need to teach people how to better raise their children.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Naturally

I'm feeling homesick. Funny, I know, cause I don't have a home. Sometimes an amputee can feel an appendage even though it's gone.

Slip Slidin' Away

Paul Simon ~


Slip slidin' away
You know the nearer your destination
The more you're slip slidin' away

I know a man
He came from my home town
He wore his passion for his woman
Like a thorny crown
He said Delores
I live in fear
My love for you's so overpowering
I'm afraid that I will disappear

Slip slidin' away
Slip slidin' away
You know the nearer your destination
The more you're slip slidin' away

I know a woman
Became a wife
These are the very words she uses
To describe her life
She said a good day
Ain't got no rain
She said a bad day's when I lie in bed
And think of things that might have been

Slip slidin' away
Slip slidin' away
You know the nearer your destination
The more you're slip slidin' away

And I know a father
Who had a son
He longed to tell him all the reasons
For the things he'd done
He came a long way
Just to explain
He kissed his boy as he lay sleeping
Then he turned around and headed home again

Slip slidin' away
Slip slidin' away
You know the nearer your destination
The more you're slip slidin' away

God only knows
God makes his plan
The information's unavailable
To the mortal man
We work our jobs
Collect our pay
Believe we're gliding down the highway
When in fact we're slip slidin' away

Just A Stone's Throw

Christians are more likely to support torture than non-Christians?

http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/04/30/religion.torture/

Basic Homelessness

There is a lot of misinformation about homelessness, and homeless people, in the United States. So, again, let me share with you some facts.

There are some very distinct differences between types of homeless people. The biggest difference is between chronically homeless people and non-chronically homeless people.

The overwhelming majority of homeless people fall into the non-chronically homeless category. Most non-chronically homeless people have at the root cause of their homelessness financial mismanagment. Most people who become homeless only experience homelessness once in their life time. The average homeless experience lasts between 3 and 4 months.

The vast majority of homeless people do not panhandle. And not all panhandlers are homeless. So, it is wrong to link panhandling to homelessness as a cause of panhandling. It would be much more accurate to link drug and alcohol abuse to a cause for panhandling.

Sadly, most people do not make any distinctions between homeless types. And so all homeless people are treated the same. Because of this all people who are homeless are forced to live together. People who have no problems other than financial, and the drug addicts, and the severally mentally ill, etc, must live side by side while they try to recover. The problems created by this dynamic are many. These different types of homelessness require drastically different types of help for their problems. And for the general underfunding of shelters, it is near impossible for such facilities to properly address all the different needs of the homeless. And for this, rarely does a homeless person get help for his specific issues. Rescue misssions and the like resort to only providing the basics of food shelter and clothing. And some, if funded, will provide basic education, like for GED qualification or very basic computer skills. Still, these basic education classes do nothing to address the actual problems homeless people face when trying to recouperate.

At rescue missions, an emphasis is placed on Christian religion as a means to recovery. Which on the surface seems like a good idea. The problem with this always stems from the staff and chaplains of rescue missions having a very poor understanding of Christianity. And so what is taught and preached at rescue missions is a rather distorted and thus unproductive version of the religion.