Archive for the ‘ Life ’ Category

Scam Alert

If this had happened today, I would have thought it was from a friend, trying to pull an April Fool’s Day joke on me. This is NOT an April Fool’s Day joke on you, really. This is just odd timing.

Woman at computer (free clip art)

Woman at computer (free clip art)

Yesterday, I was at home, working on the computer. I had just finished all I could do on my income taxes, done a bit of blogging, and had started to work on writing a post for the Ruritan Rapidan District website that I created and maintain in my spare time.

Then the cordless cell phone beside my desk rang. The Caller ID identified the number as 215-249-6100. Not recognizing the number, and thinking it might be a “real” telephone call, I decided to answer it.

I’m not sure now if I’m glad I answered it or not. Often I let the home phone just go to voice mail to screen the calls – there are so many telemarketers “out there” that did not seem to get the message that my phone is on the National Do Not Call Registry!

Be that as it may, I answered the phone. A male with a foreign accent asked to speak to me. Well, our family has dealt with a few doctors recently with a similar foreign accent, so I still thought it might be a legitimate phone call. I replied that I was the person he was asking to speak with.

Then the adventure began. The man identified himself as a Microsoft Windows Security employee. He informed me that he was calling to tell me that his company has identified my computer as having a virus!

Microsoft Windows logo (free clip art)

Microsoft Windows logo (free clip art)

As you can imagine, my immediate reaction was to think that this phone call was an attempt by someone who has malicious intent. (And I feel very bad for the many people “out there” that are not technologically savvy enough to see right through this type of ploy, and immediately fall prey to this predatory behavior!)

So, I repeated back to this man, “you are calling me to tell me that my computer has a virus on it?” His reply was, “Yes ma’am, a very serious virus, and I’m calling you to tell you how we can help you to remove the virus.” I thought to myself “I’ll bet you are!”

My reply to him was “You can tell, from where you are, that my computer has a virus on it?” His reply again, was, “Yes ma’am. a very serious virus. and I’m calling you to tell you how we can help you to remove the virus.”

Now I’ve decided to have a bit of fun at his expense. So I asked him “Well, I’ve got eight computers here, can you tell me which ONE of those computers has a virus on it? I really need to know which ONE!”

Computer hacker (free clip art)

Computer hacker (free clip art)

Well, as you can imagine, there was a brief pause at the other end, and then the man spoke “you have eight computers there?” to which I replied “yes sir, I have eight computers here, and if one of them is infected, I really need to know which one of those eight is infected, so I can take care of it right away!”

Then the man started to stammer and sputter “ummmmm…. eight computers…. ummmmmmm…. I don’t know….. ummmm….. eight computers…….”

My tolerance for stupidity depleted, I decided to put him out of his misery. I know it’s rude to interrupt, but I interrupted him (sorry) and said “Let me make this easy for you. I don’t believe that you are a legitimate business. I think you are a spammer, scammer, hacker, identity thief that is trying to rip me off. I have all kinds of firewalls, anti-malware, anti-spamware programs on my computers,and I don’t believe that you are who you say you are. Put this phone number on your ‘Do Not Call List’ and do not ever call me again!” And then I hung up the telephone.

Then I went to Google, and typed in the phone number 215-249-6100. The search results led me to a website called callercomplaints dot com, where people can register a telephone number and complain about it. There were already several complaints logged (with details) for that phone number. I added my complaint to the list – you can read it if you want to.

Please remember – when someone calls YOU and wants information from YOU, do NOT GIVE IT OUT! It is a SCAM! Hang up the phone!

Trip Down Memory Lane

Poop cake from Lewiston Maine bakery

Poop cake from Lewiston Maine bakery

A few evenings ago one of my sons asked to me find some photos of a family pet we used to have and email them to him. Well, my photo collection is NOT well organized, and I spent a few hours last night looking through dozens of envelopes of photos from the past. Yes, I found some photos of the pet that I will send to him, but that is not the focus of THIS post. This post is about another photo that I found that brought back some memories from a place that I used to work.

This cake was a specialty cake from a bakery in Lewiston Maine. I don’t know the name of the bakery (sorry) and I no longer have contact with the people who originally ordered it, so I don’t know HOW anyone can order this for themselves. But apparently the bakery had a lot of orders for this cake, and to be perfectly honest I think I would be inclined to order this cake on numerous occasions if I could. But I can’t, so it will just have to be a fond memory of a group of co-workers that got a birthday cake for a person who suffered from severe “potty mouth.” The people who ordered it called it a “poop cake.” Well, actually they used a different word that means poop, but I’m trying to “clean it up” for the purposes of being a “G” rated post.

It really is a chocolate cake, with chocolate fudge frosting with peanuts, plastic flies, and bathroom tissue tucked in and around the top of the cake. And yes, we DID eat it. And yes, it WAS delicious. Some of the co-workers joked about it being “Good ****”

The words around the bottom of the cake plate “Potty patrol” because we were always teasing the “potty mouth” co-worker that we needed to assign someone to help him control his mouth!

photo of Ruritan PSA fire truck in parade

photo of Ruritan PSA fire truck in parade

Looking over the Officer’s Handbook from the Ruritan Club, I saw that there is supposed to be a Publicity Chair on the District Board. Looking at last year’s directory, I saw that there wasn’t even a listing for that chair! So I called the District Governor, and asked him if he already had someone to fill that position, and he said that he had not yet filled the spot, and did not have anyone in mind. So I volunteered to fill that spot, and he agreed. So now I am also the Publicity Chair for the Rapidan Distric! One of my first actions as Publicity Chair, was to reach out to local radio and television stations, to see if any of them are willing to run free Public Service Announcements for any of the clubs in the District.

I was extremely gratified that most of the stations contacted have agreed! One television station, a local access television station in Spotsylvania County (CVTV) even designed this great video spot, based on a script that I provided for them (from a radio spot on the National Ruritan website) and they are running it for the Ruritan Club! I am so grateful for the positive response I have had from the community!

I’ve posted a copy of the Ruritan PSA video on the unofficial website that I designed for the Rapidan District, and am providing a copy of it here as well.

Here is a copy of the PSA – what do YOU think of it?

Crafting

Duct tape wallets

Duct tape wallets

As you may know, my hands were injured several years ago in a traffic accident, and the pain in my hands has made it very difficult for me to use my hands to do most of the things that I love to do. But this year I decided that I would slowly try to do some of the crafting things that I used to love to do, and even though it hurt my hands a lot, and took me a long time, it was good to do a few of my beloved crafts again.

One of the things I enjoy doing is making duct tape wallets. I made several of them this autumn, with the expectation of selling them at a Holiday Bazaar held by the Jefferson Ruritans, but at the last minute I did not attend the Bazaar. So I ended up giving most of the duct tape wallets away as Christmas gifts instead.

Another item that I made, in anticipation of selling at the Holiday Bazaar, was a lot of the “infinity scarves” that you can make out of T-shirts. I had never made any of those before, so it was a fun, new learning experience, to make them. I have to admit, though that the rotary cutter blade got dull pretty quickly, and I went through a lot of them. And, putting the kind of pressure I needed to put on the rotary cutter hurt my hands so I had to ask other people to help with the cutting from time to time. Using regular scissors was just too painful, and I could only use the rotary blade for a short time. It took a long time to get these projects done, and I took a lot of pain relief products, but it was really gratifying to be able to create with my hands – even if it was just a little bit. I ended up giving several of those away for Christmas gifts as well.

And then there were the crochet dishcloths. I made a few of them, too. But crocheting really hurt my hands, too. I did give two or three of those away, too.

Thankfully I paced myself over a long period of time, but I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to create like that again – my hands really were quite unhappy with me! And that made me realize that the chances of me going back to work at a job that requires me to use my hands a lot are slim to none. And it will probably be a very long time before I do any more crafting.

Everyone that got one of the scarves, dishcloths, or wallets was really quite pleased, so I was at least glad for that.

This morning my hubby showed me a photograph that someone sent to his phone. It looked like one of my sons riding a chicken! I asked him how in the world he did that, and he ignored my question. Eventually I heard him tell someone else that it was a picture that someone found on the Internet and sent the picture to him. The photo is not of my son at all, but boy, at first glance, it certainly does look a lot like him!

Man riding a chicken photo credit Richie Nolan

Man riding a chicken (photo credit Richie Nolan)

So I decided to go online and try to find the photograph for myself. It only took a few moments, and I found this website that talks about the photograph and how it was created by Graphic designer Richie Nolan. Apparently the photograph became an Internet sensation months ago (why am I only seeing it for the first time now, I wonder?)

Both my kids have a very strong resemblance to each other, you could guess either one if you’d like! I just think it is really funny! Especially since my kids enjoy role-playing video games, and I can just envision them riding a chicken off to battle!

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