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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Recognizing the Value of Non-Profits in our Community, the start of baseball and a dreaded virus attack

I have tried to highlight the non-profits in our community that do the valuable work of improving the quality of life in Howard County. Now is the time to recognize the value of non-profits that you feel are worthy of recognition. The Association of Community Services of Howard County is now accepting nominations until April 29th for their Audrey Robbins Awards. Now in its 36th Year, these prestigious awards recognize the work of human services organizations and those volunteers and staff who go above and beyond all expectations in their service to the community. These awards not only recognize the achievements of those honored, but also offer public recognition for the organizations and causes to which our honorees devote their time and energy. Anyone may submit a nomination. Nominations fall into four categories: Employee of the Year, Employee Team of the Year, Volunteer or the Year, and Volunteer Team of the year.

Play Ball

With the start of another Major League Baseball season those of us that halfheartedly follow the Orioles hope that the optimism of a .500 season might be possible this year. We know that being in the same division as the Yankees and the Red Sox and their huge budgets will never make for a level playing field. If professional football has shown the advantage of a socialist model of business in its "share the TV wealth" model as being good for competitiveness than the capitalistic baseball model of the wealthy get wealthier and the poor finish last in their division (except the smart Tampa Bay club) then the Orioles are destined to finish last in their division again.

As someone who has been turned off to baseball because the slowness of the game I now just DVR the game and start watching it an hour after the starting time to fast foward through commercials and between pitches. This allows me to watch a game in about one hour and then be at the live broadcast. One of the biggest problems with the games being slow is allowing the batters to get out of the batter's box after each pitch to adjust their batter's gloves. Some hitters take this to the extreme. Are all hitters suffering from OCD??? The ritualistic process of adjusting their batting gloves is ridiculous. Do gloves really make any difference other than lengthening the games? I haven't seen any more great hitters since the players started using gloves. Might be a psychological benefit but probably not much more. I also don't want to be sacrilegious but do you really think God will help you get a hit by getting out of the batter's box to cross yourself between pitches. Don't you think God has better things to worry about?

I do this with football even better. I will start watching a DVRed Ravens game an hour and 30 minutes after starting time and catch up to the live action late in the fourth quarter. Football, because they have 30 seconds between plays, allows you to set your skip on the DVR setting to 30 seconds and go from one play to another. If only life had a fast forward and reverse button to replay pleasant moments and skip through unpleasant activities!

It Finally Happened- A dreaded virus attacked my computer

I spent 2 hours last night (not getting to bed till after midnight) getting a virus deleted from my computer. I thought that viruses were a thing of the past with the new anti-virus programs. That is why I pay Verizon for its Security Suite and use McAfee to tell me the safety of internet sites. But last night after opening an attachment from a friend it happened. A warning of a virus infecting my computer that required a purchase of a Microsoft anti virus software program. The tip off that this was bogus was that I couldn't open any internet site without this warning showing up rather than the page I was trying to open. All I saw was "Warning your computer is infected with a virus- you need to download Windows XP 2011 aniti virus program to access the internet safely." No legitimate software provider would block you unless you downloaded their program uninvited.

So at 10:30 last night rather than heading to bed I called Verizon who connect me to a technical support person in India (8:30 am his time and where it was 70 degrees---amazing the conversations you can have while waiting for your computer to reboot) who remotely tried to find and delete the virus. After much trial and error and rebooting he finally fixed the problem and I headed to bed at 12:30 am relieved from the panic of not having a functioning computer. Have we got so tied to our computers that life ends without functioning internet access??? Cutting off internet access to a blogger is like cutting off oxygen to a scuba diver!

1 comment:

Karen said...

Thanks for bringing this opportunity to the community's attention, Duane. Hope lots of folks will take advantage of the chance to give some well-deserved kudos to folks who do the work that makes HC a special place. Karen (full disclosure: I work with ACS)