Monday, January 30, 2006

College Dropout

It looks like after only a few months of school I'm going to become a college dropout. I've been working on it for a little while now.

After learning valuable lessons about how financial aid award letters are formatted. I discovered that I was only awarded half of what I needed to pay for school. I have also had another lesson in "even if you're in a hurry, there's still time to make sure you do it right".

Either way, I'm going to be a proper college dropout. At this point I can do one of two things. I can go into a full write up about how I don't get along with educational institutions and that I'm not likely to go back, or I can call this good for now.

I vote for option "B". Higher education is spared a rant until I am more in the mood to form one properly.


Sunday, January 22, 2006

Business Opportunities

Last week I had a friend from high school call me. She asked me how I was and we spoke for a while and after a good bit of catching up she asked me what I was doing Saturday morning and wondered if I would be interested in going to a meeting. Now, at this I did know what was coming and I knew my end answer would be no. However, I decided to go as a friendly matter of having a chance to visit with someone I hadn't seen in a while as well as looking at the business opportunity meeting in generalized terms being familiar with the format.

Businesses, A history:

I first became familiar with independent agent/recruiter styles of business (otherwise known as MLM) when my parents became involved with Herbalife. I myself lost some good weight on the Herbalife products and they work if you use them properly. Good company, good product, but the greatest benefit was that of improved health, not making lots of money. All things considered, it was worthwhile.

My second foray into this kind of business was with a company called Online Exchange. This one was however less legitimate. I signed a lease and received a website and credit card processing equipment. In signing the lease one set of lease payoff requirements was explained to me and a 30 day cancellation policy was provided. Everything took longer than 30 days to process, and the lease payoff requirements had been described to me in a way that was specifically wrong. I then learned that the legal term for that was fraud. This ruined my credit from late 2000 until early 2004 when I discovered that the FTC had gotten involved. It's good to know that I wasn't the only one, but I had fallen for it all the same.

My third entry into MLM was with Primerica. This is another legitimate company. Legally, Primerica is simply an insurance agency. I determined this by looking it up last year on the state insurance listing website. I did not stick with it as it does not at all line up with my talents. I'm a programmer, and I have talents in other technical areas. Primerica needs sales people as they sell a useful product. I do not need to be one of them.

This brings us to the present. There have been some other businesses I have tried to start. Presently the only business that I am a part owner of is the consulting company my Dad, my brother, and I have. We call it Kruger Computer Systems. It is simply an entity to run billing through for some people we do consulting for. KCS continues and is a good way of organizing small jobs when tax season comes around.

Of all this I have learned a lot about businesses and what it takes to get into them. I am getting pretty good at identifying the red flags that show up as warnings before mistakes are made. This is especially important when the mistake is that I am the wrong person for the business.

This brings me to yesterday. My friend had invited me to see some information about her and her husband's Pre-Paid Legal Business. Let me first say that I do not wish to discourage other people from this kind of business. They are involved in a legitimate business. The same pre-paid legal that they sell was available to me to sell at Primerica. The reason why I said no yesterday was because I know this kind of business isn't for me, I've tried.

What I've learned about Business Opportunity meetings:

Business opportunity meetings are created by marketers. This too, I will not condemn. The meetings do what they are designed to.

Here are the parts of a meeting.
  • Describe to someone some pain that they're feeling.
  • Establish that you were in the same situation.
  • Show that the business is what has caused you to over come the pain you used to have.
  • Offer everyone there the possibility of overcoming their pain by starting a business of their own.
The problem that I run into is that these steps can turn a business meeting into a religious meeting. I know because I have experienced it.

At this point I expect to offend some people.

Everyone has some sadness or pain in their life. What religion tries to do is to provide relief for those ills. It's what we usually call gaining salvation or otherwise being saved. The problem with seeking this through a business is that even if you do improve the quality of your life, a sudden change in legislation or problem with the economy can undo all your hard work. Your works in your business on which you trusted can all vanish in moments leaving you very much where you started. Unhappy.

This kind of meeting works because people everywhere are looking to be saved. Either by someone or by something. When they go to a meeting and are told that there is a solution to their sadness and that their failures are not their fault. It's easy to sign up for a business instead of looking at one's own life and figuring out what is causing personal unhappiness. Once again, I know because I've tried.

How many businesses founded on this did I succeed in? None.
Is this to say that people involved in this kind of business make it their religion? No.

Business opportunity meetings just have a tendency to attract people who are looking for religion not a business.

So what's to be done? Make your religion your religion and don't confuse it with anything else in your life. Business and politics are two things I have sworn off of mistaking for my religion. I have made that mistake in the past. I know what my religion is. I would prefer to trust that following Christ can save me. Now if only following Christ were as easy as starting a business.


Saturday, January 21, 2006

Comedic Devices

I have this friend who I participate in advanced nonsense with. Advanced nonsense is when you could have an entirely normal conversation, but instead you make points that would confuse people and otherwise make their heads hurt. Tonight we had some good ones.

Just before going home I watched a few episodes of Scrubs with Andy. I had never seen it and it seems to be a pretty funny show. After we finished watching it I commented that it didn't seem to have a laugh track. At this Andy pointed out that many shows today are moving away from the laugh track, except as a comedic device to be funny.

I can only hope that someone else could appreciate why I found that so funny or even the pained look I got on my face as I tried to process what was really said. Advanced nonsense is a great hobby, you just have to be really smart to do it well.

Super Nerd

Friday, January 20, 2006

The Amazing Lord Kentos (TALK)

The Amazing Lord Kentos, or TALK if you want to shorten it a bit is what I would describe as my best friend. I would also describe him as being absolutely, completely, and in all imaginable ways insane.

So Kentos recently headed down to Guata-mailia-stana-rabia to work for a company as a wrench monkey on a drilling operation. So far he's had to build a couple of boats and make other preparations for the off shore drilling they're doing on this lake. Yesterday he apparently fought a crocodile. Yeah, he's nuts, but how many people do you know who would invite a croc onto their boat and then get rid of it? Here's his story...

Ever fought a Croc? I now have, and it was awesome!!11!!

HAHAHA now that you attention is mine lemme tell you the story of my newest weapon, croc-be-gone. You see while testing these boats I built, I took one to the mouth of a river, lo-and-behold, ye olde crocodile appears on my horizon. now I'm not one to be deliberately cruel to animals.... So I gunned it.

::takes out the middle::

shortly thereafter the croc fled in the fearsome-terror-inspiring-awesomeness of my presence.

now where the middle should be theres a story ala tarentino yo.

had you witnessed this first hand you would have seen me offer up my meat filled lunch to the croc. by luring him with in onto the back of our craft. keeping in mind the local over my shoulder telling me this was a bad idea. I mustered all my vast mental powers, and utterly disregarded his addmonishing.

so here the picture, 4 foot croc on extended water level platform.... kentos between croc and terrified local, sandwhich between kentos and croc...(arnt profile views fun, its like a side scroller).

so I take a bite (convicing the croc that it was okay to do the same). and tear off a generous portion of the sandwhich and fed it to carl the croc. his oh so toothy grin assured me, he enjoyed it. But you see carls problem was he was greedy. and started comin oh so very close. with that look people get when you give them a sandwhich... they're oh so very good and they want more, and something told me my new friend carl wasn't above stabbing me in the back for the price of an extra value meal with a side of kentos... apparently crocs dont have very big ears or dont speak spanish. neither would surprise me. so after telling him to shooo in four languages. his mouth started to open, at me, seemingly saying "get in" now I'm not usually one to go jumping in crocs mouths, so I didnt. but i did summon my mental records concerning pre-historic animals to remember that they open their mouths much slower than they close them, so flinging my foot out in a less-than ninja like manner I landed my foot square on the tip of his nose-snort-thingy. Now this must have not been very pleasant for him, because he reeled back hissing at me (all to late I relized I should've hissed to communicate with him) and slid off into the water. doing the only admirable thing I could think of, I honored him by tossing the rest of the sandwhich into the water, and immortalized him in this email.

well played carl, well played!!

thats probably gunna be the high point of the trip, if not my life, I know your thinking what was I thinking or why, and I'll tell you what I was thinking and why

WHY?? I never feed a croc, let alone kicked one... Have you? That was reason enough... plus the age old motto of my life 'tos on the noes is now official, further more my desire to return to the states in one piece is not so great that I'd risk not kicking a croc, and only having a lame story of how I almost feed a croc but crapped out cause it seemed safe and 20 feet away seemed so resonable a view.

and what I was thinkin' truth is I ummm damn what was I thinking? I guess with re-analysis of said situation I was thinkin hey I'll give this croc a sandwhich and we'll be bestest friends, best meal of his life, right and maybe me for dessert... or maybe I was thinking I'd get eaten and it'd make headlines. or if I escaped with only one limb lost I would've taken my pain and sensation as re-assurance that I'm still alive, either way. kentos 1. Croc 0. all limbs accounted for no blood loss I made out pretty good for my first time croc-wrestlin'.

I might go see him tomorrow, take him flowers with a get well soon card attached.I really hope I didn't break anything, I mean plastic surgerey for a nose can be expensive.

I hope you've all enjoyed this email as much as I've enjoyed putting it to paper
or whatever this thing is. until you read of me again... Dont do anything you suspect I believe to be a good idea. but do at least one thing everyday that would make me proud.

Crocodile Dealer-Wither Extraordinar

So there you have it. I don't know of anything else that describes The Amazing Lord Kentos any better than that. He's always been crazy, but now that he's out of the country he is raising the bar and doing things some people only dream of.

I say huzzah!


Super Nerd

Someone at the office has decided that my title is "Super Nerd". It's really funny when others hear her call me that. It's kind of a "Did she just call him what I think she called him?". It makes me laugh. As titles go I think this one fits me, especially when I start getting into advanced nonsense.

All things considered, I have fun. Being a super nerd helps.


Thursday, January 19, 2006

Donor appreciation night

Back when I was in high school ARUP came to my school for a blood drive. A little over a year ago I got a call from them asking if I could come in and donate. Apparently they were a little low on just the kind of blood that I have. Since then they have pretty much called me every 8 weeks to come in and give a pint. I think part of why they keep calling me to come in is because I come in when they ask and I have CMV negative blood. Apparently this means my blood can be given to infants or other people who have CMV negative blood in diminishing amounts with good results.

Imagine my surprise when after a year of this I get an invitation to a donor appreciation night dinner being hosted by ARUP. I guess it's a nice way to say thank you to all of the people who have blood and are in good enough health to give it away.

The funny thing about this is the fact that I missed a blood drive today (ARUP got me Saturday). I have this funny personal thing about not giving a full quart in a week. I'm not sure they have enough orange juice and cookies to keep me going after giving that much.


Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Pete Ashdown

I've been paying some attention to the Pete Ashdown campaign as I'm really not a very big fan of Orrin Hatch. I prefer my representatives to do more good than harm for my industry and Orrin fails to not screw things up. In fact, I'm half tempted to make that my platform when I run for things in the future "I won't screw stuff up".

As for Pete? I think he'll do a good job. I think that he'll do a good job to the amount of $40 so that's what I contributed this morning. The thing that reminded me to make the contribution was when I heard him on the Radio from Hell show on X96 this morning.

Good luck Pete.


PS. The offer still stands if you need any native windows application programming done.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Wars and real freedom

I know this is more Bob's department, but I thought I'd share the transcript of a funny text based adventure I found today. Here is the adventure text. It goes through all the stages of Bush's presidency and as I said, it's pretty funny.

All funny stuff aside, I must say I don't much care for the war. I had a friend who was over there doing army intelligence. He had is tour of duty and is now back in the states in a domestic assignment. While he was gone I thought it was a severe shame that he had to put his life in any kind of danger.

Please, don't misunderstand me. I know this can sound like I just don't like war as a matter of being lazy. I just want to know what the motive really are and the more I read, the more I doubt that our involvement is meant to pull down oppression and stop people from killing each other. In the case of the second link, I can't help but wonder if our leaders want us to have casualties as that keeps giving us reasons to stay. Disciplinary action for when a soldier buys what he considers to be better armor is ridiculous, yet that seems to be the case. Yes, there are people in Iraq that want us there, and there are those that are shooting us. I just wish we could offer to take the ones who want to live in peace with us and leave the rest to kill each other. It is nearly impossible to stop people from killing one another once they have decided that's what they want to do. Or is that unreasonable?

Someday this empire of ours will fall, I can live with that. I just hope that I can band together with people that want to maintain peace and order among themselves if it happens in my life time, which I hope it doesn't. The real question I think we all need to ask ourselves is "Whose side am I on and what am I fighting for?".

For me, I know what side I want to be on. I want to be on the Lord's side. And what I want to fight for is freedom from oppression and personal sin. You can have all the liberty in the world, but you will never be happy in the bondage of sin. At the same time, you can be oppressed by your fellow man and your government but be happy and at peace knowing that you are free from sin to choose your actions with a clear conscience before God.

That second option sounds nice, I hope I can get there someday.


Monday, January 09, 2006

A new blog

It looks like I may join another blog. This possibility has been in the works longer than I've been thinking about changing this one, but I think it's a good one for me to be a part of. It's called "Mysteries of Man (and Woman)". Though Bob hasn't added me to it yet I do think I should get started here at least.

At present I am 23, single, and preferring that my situation were different. That is not to say that I cannot go on living being single as that would be a fallacy, I just think that there is a lot that a man can enjoy being in the company of a good woman.

Things that I know:
  • Relationships require practice to get right.
  • If I try too hard to make a relationship happen it will fail.
  • The other person involved is a unique individual with needs and desires of her own.
  • Isolating myself when dating gets hard makes things worse.
  • Plowing ahead through more dates when I don't fell like it isn't the answer and makes things worse.
  • If I decide not to date someone out of vanity; karma dictates that the same must happen to me.
  • Attracting the wrong ones is better than attracting none, but still isn't that great.
  • Games are more often played by mistake and are founded on confusion and fear rather than malice.
So there are some definitions. What does this mean for me? Well, it means the last year of not getting anywhere in my dating efforts hasn't been for nothing. As for the future? Sure beats me...

I know there are people I know that I like, but just never ask out. I know there have been some from my past that may have been different had I understood what I now know. I think the three keys are to be observant, be patient, and be myself.


The more things change the more they stay the same...

So the thing didn't work out and I don't feel like paying for/maintaining a server for

I seem to be remembering why I ended up going with It suited me well enough and more importantly, it was available. So I'll be keeping the same address for now. That said I'm going to focus on the Life part more than the hacker part.

Stay tuned.


Change of venu

I think I need to change something... I made my blog too programming centric and as a result I don't post very often. I could change the name, but the domain name is still wrong for anything else. I'm either going to try for or I'm going to see if I can associate my domain name with it. Either way stay tuned or try both of those names if you find I havn't posted in a long time. I guess this is sort of a blog change of address form...