Free Book Summary – One Minute Millionaire – Written by Mark Victor Hansen and Robert Allen

This book is a New York Times Best Seller and I can see why. If you are not familiar with the authors, they are hitters. Mark Victor Hansen is the co-author of Chicken Soup for the Soul with Jack Canfield. This book and series have sold over 65 million copies. That is really unbelievable. I read one of Robert Allen’s books back in the late 90’s called Multiple Streams of Income. This was and is a great book and is more relevant today than before. Think about it. Years ago, one person could work and support the family and then both spouses needed to work to support the family. In times like this, two people working are not enough because of the job situation and pricing pressures on living expenses. Multiple Streams of Income shows you the power of having your money working harder than you in multiple areas. I will profile that book in a future summary.

Why is this important to me? Requesting you to read a 400 page book is a tall order and request for your time. Thus I want to make sure it is worth it for you to do so. In my humble opinion, this book is worth the time. It is laid out for full mind retention. What this means is that it is two books in one. The left side of the book is the nuts and bolts and left brained stuff that shows you the how to. The Right side of the book is the right brain stuff showing you in a heartfelt story, the principles at work. This makes it much more identifiable to the reader. These two authors have a personal mission to create 1,000,000 millionaires. This is a tall vision that could be seen as a gimmick. It is not a gimmick. You will see that the principles are sound and easy to follow. One thing that drives people is incentives. The stronger the pain, the more incentive there is to fix it. This is a key component to success and it shown throughout the book.

3 This book is packed with great information as well as an excellent story to demonstrate the concepts. For the sake of time, I will chat about the Millionaire Formula which consists of the following:

1. Dream – This is the incentive part of it. The authors have a vision to create 1,000,000 millionaires. This is put in print and part of their DNA. It is what I call their Compelling Why! Without this, your dreams are really more of a fantasy. There has to be real incentive to get the job done. Imagine this, your husband dies, you are left with two kids and no money and his parents take custody of YOUR kids. They have a lot of money and you are broke. What do you do? After you suck your thumb, you find a way to fix the problem. This is the fictional story in this book.

2. Team – Every successful person talks about the power of teams. Teams allow you to leverage OPE, OPT, OPW – other peoples expertize, time and work. When you seek out teammates with the same Dream then you build upon a powerful force and it makes the job much easier to achieve. Thus you get the power of time leverage because in a nutshell, two heads are better than one.

3. Theme – Theme is the way in which you decide to setup your multiple streams of income. You can use a business, licensing, real estate, investments and the internet. I want to spend more time on theme.

I want to relate each of these pillars based on some of the stuff I have done. I am a work in progress and have experienced both sides of the sword on each of these buckets. Based on my initial result in each, I should be on the street corner with a sign that says, “Please help – need a 12 step program in how to stop losing money.” Hopefully, you can leverage the good and eliminate the bad. Remember that to truly understand a subject, you have to study both sides. Charlie Munger, Warren Buffett’s partner always says – Invert, Invert, invert.

1. Business – A business by far can generate wealth faster than any other bucket outlined. It is also the most difficult. One of the key components outlined, is the creation of the team. I can tell you that if you dig in with the wrong partners, you will lose money and grow old quick. Please give some thought about who you partner with. I have lost more money and taken more ass chaffing’s because of the wrong people, that I implore you to give some thought to this. A great place to start is to outline the exit. What happens if we both want out? How does that work? How do we value each part? When you begin with the end in mind then you at least know how you can solve the problem. The real benefit of the business is the structure. You move from “Earn-Tax-Spend” to “Earn-Spend-Tax” which is a huge advantage over time.

2. Real Estate – More fortunes have been made with Real Estate. There are several types and you need to be educated and tap in to the right resources to be successful. You make your money on the buy and the goal is to be to cash flow positive every month. If you are looking to flip then you need to make sure you use 1031 exchanges to avoid the taxes. As you all know, you can lose your tail in Real Estate if you are not careful with the debt or fall in love with the deal. Get educated.

3. Licensing – I first read about this in Robert’s book, Multiple Streams of Income. Licensing is anything that you can replicate and get paid on. Thus if you create software, music, books or content that other people want, then you can license it. We have done this in the software world and it is powerful because the cost of your next unit is almost zero. The headache involved is that you need to invest a ton of time and money upfront and your payoff may be three years in the future. This is why licensing is so strong. Today, if you are sharp, you can create mobile apps and license them for Android and Apple. This is a way where you can make a 99 cent item and get a million downloads. There are 15 year old kids doing this as we speak.

4. Investing – Paper investing is probably the easiest to do and the one where most people lose money. If you look at stock market investing, it is really difficult to beat the S&P 500 over time. Everybody knows that you buy low and sell high but there is a small force called EMOTION and 90% of the people end up buying high and selling low. Again, this requires education. You need to understand the difference between price and value. A $50 dollar stock may be “cheaper” than a $5 stock in terms of price and value.

The One Minute Millionaire is a good book that you should read if you are serious about creating wealth for you and your family. I thought it was a gimmick trying to leverage the One Minute Manager concept. It is no gimmick and the principles are sound. Any time you can leverage the knowledge of two people that have generated over a billion dollars in business, it is worth the time to study them.

I hope you have found this short summary useful. The key to any new idea is to work it into your daily routine until it becomes habit. Habits form in as little as 21 days. One thing you can take away from this book is DREAM. What is your compelling WHY? If you have the right incentives then the how to part is easy. Spend some time over the next couple of weeks and really decide what you want and START. Taking Action will put you in front of 90% of the people out there.

How To Freeze A Specific Row In Excel Using VBA

Whenever you have a large amount of data, it can be helpful to keep a specific row in sight when you scroll down the screen. While you can do this manually it makes sense to use VBA to select the row and “freeze” the pane.

This article will show you how to freeze the top pane depending on the amount of data you have.

A Typical Scenario Where The VBA Freeze Pane Command Is Useful

The example we’ll use is a downloaded file which contains more than 100 entries.

It could be a customer or employee list where you would like to “freeze” the top row as you scroll through the entries.

The data might look like this:


Name
======
Emp1
Emp2
Emp3
.
.
Emp100
Emp101

We’ll assume you’re using VBA to save the data into a new worksheet, rather than using a manual copy and paste.

Once your code has finished downloading the data, you might want to freeze the top row if there are more than 100 entries.

First, you’ll need to work out how many entries there are:


dim rng as range
dim entries as long
set rng=range("a1").currentRegion.columns(1)
entries=rng.rows.count

Once you know how many rows are in the data set you can conditionally set the freeze pane command by selecting the row below the specified cell.

We’re going to freeze the top row, but we will need to “unfreeze” any existing panes first.


activeWindow.freezepanes=false
if entries >100 then

range("a2").activate

activeWindow.freezepanes=true
End If

If you need to specify the row to be frozen you can insert the following command in the code.


myRow=x+1
range("a" & x).activate
activeWindow.freezepanes=true

The same technique could be used to set the freeze command based on other variables or criteria. In the example below, the code freezes the pane below the cell containing “January 2013”.


set rng=range("a1").currentRegion.columns(1)
myCell="January 2013"

For x = 1 To rng.Rows.Count

If rng.Rows(x) = str Then

myCell = rng.Rows(x).Offset(1, 0).Address

Exit For

End If
Next
Range(myCell).Activate
ActiveWindow.freezePanes = True

Or, the code could search for a cell with bold type.


For x = 1 To rng.Rows.Count

If rng.Rows(x).font.bold=true Then

myCell = rng.Rows(x).Offset(1, 0).Address

Exit For

End If
Next
Range(myCell).Activate
ActiveWindow.freezePanes = True

You could activate the code in several ways:

  • Set up a worksheet change event to identify when the number of entries exceeds a certain number
  • Write the code into an existing data import procedure
  • Create a tag such as bold type or a cell value to enable the code to identify the correct place to insert the frozen pane.

Summary

Excel is capable of holding large quantities of data, but it’s a good idea to keep the design of your spreadsheet as user-friendly as possible. By using the freeze panes command you can reduce errors and make life easier for anyone using your Excel file.

IQ Score – An Objective Measure of Intelligence Or Just a Usual Test?

When researching the information about IQ scores of famous persons, several ambiguous and confusing statements come into light. There are a mass of discussions of Shakira’s IQ that is claimed to be substantially higher than IQs of George Bush and Ronald Reagan. IQ score of Michelangelo is said to be 180, however, he died in the 16th century, while IQ score was invented only in the 20th.

I tried to find an answer to the questions – what actually IQ score is, whether it is an objective measure of intelligence, and can different IQs be compared?

The essence of IQ

The first thing to understand – intelligence quotient or IQ instead of being a special type of test, is a method to score various standardized tests. The tests attempt to measure intelligence, which can be defined as a capability to reason, think abstractly, learn and solve problems.

The concept of IQ is graphically reflected in the most known formula of the term:

IQ=Mental age/Chronological age*100

IQ tests are designed to measure above mentioned mental age or intelligence, which is then divided by the chronological age or real age of a person, and expressed in percentage terms. For example, if a 20 years old person scores 20 in a test that measures mental age, he has IQ score of 100, which is the population average.

Why different IQ scores may not be comparable?

1) Even though the standardized IQ tests attempt to include diverse fields to measure one’s intelligence, they are becoming more and more focused. If a person scores high in IQ tests that is more focused on verbal capabilities, it doesn’t mean that he will also score high in a test that measures mathematical abilities.

2) Modern IQ scores are calculated according to a different scale than the ones from the middle of 20th century. Even though both methods yield similar results for medium IQ scores, for high IQs the old method gives substantially higher results.

3) For different IQ tests standard deviations may also differ – this in turn makes scores of those tests incomparable on the same level.

4) For a part of population there exist an interesting tendency – younger people tend to score higher in IQ tests – thus, intelligence “decrease” with the lapse of time. This trend, however, may not reflect the real possessed intelligence of people.

5) It is widely perceived that IQ tests measure real intelligence, and the score can’t be boosted by trainings. However, there also exists evidence that by purposeful preparation to the test, the score can actually be increased.

Is Shakira more intelligent than George Bush?

In order to prove that Shakira is more intelligent than George Bush or Ronald Reagan one should have some evidence. Shakira should have been taken the same IQ tests that the presidents took. Their scores should be calculated using the same scales and standard deviations. All of them should be at similar age at the time when taking the test.

Moreover, if Shakira was prepared for the IQ test through purposeful trainings – it could partly explain the fact of higher IQ score.

As there is actually no information about criteria of measuring IQs for different famous people – comparisons of IQs are not objective and may give false perceptions.

One question still remains unanswered – how was the IQ of Michelangelo measured!?!

Cleaning a Wheelchair

Everyday use of a wheelchair can cause it to become dirty and grimy. Medical conditions, incontinence, and illness can cause other material to need to be cleaned off the wheel chair. Cleaning a new or used wheelchair properly will be worth the time and effort.

BASIC CLEANING OF A WHEELCHAIR

Everyday use can cause the build up of dirt and grime on a wheelchair. Regularly wiping down the wheelchair will prevent build up. It can be done daily or every few days depending on the amount of use. Simply wiping down the wheelchair will keep it clean and prevent buildup from affecting function. Build up can affect the efficiency of the wheels and also of the breaks.

WHEELCHAIR WHEEL CLEANING

The tires on a wheelchair can become very dirty easily if the wheelchair is used outdoors.

Even inside, the tires can become dirty. The same cleaner that is used on bicycle tires and car tires works on wheelchair tires. There are even wheel covers to prevent the dirt from outside being transferred inside. Some people even have two wheelchairs, one for inside and one for outside so that carpeting and flooring inside doesn’t get dirty. Not everyone can afford that, so the wheels are often wiped down before the chair comes in the house. Use cleaners that won’t leave a residue that can stain indoor flooring. Another advantage to having clean wheelchair wheels is that the dirt on the tires won’t get on the hands of the user who pushes themselves.

WHEELCHAIR CUSHION CLEANING

Even if there are no problems with incontinence and leaking of adult diapers, wheelchair cushions can have an odor after awhile. It may just be from sweating or from spills, but eventually a seat cushion that is not cleaned regularly will acquire an odor. Even waterproof cushions can absorb moisture or liquids, which can result in odor. Usually cleaning a cushion as soon as the user goes to bed will allow enough time for the cushion to dry after cleaning. In the case that it isn’t, an alternative cushion or pillow will work as a temporary cushion for the wheelchair user. Cleaning with vinegar or baking soda is an effective way to clean. A cleaner for pet accidents also works well. Bleach can damage material and cause bleach stains, so use caution. Be sure all of the cleaner is rinsed off to avoid irritation of the skin when the person is able to have their cushion back on their chair.

SPILLS ON WHEELCHAIRS

Most spills on wheelchairs can be wiped off quickly with no residue left behind. Some spills like milk can quickly be the cause of odor on a wheelchair. The faster the spill is wiped up, the less time it has to soak in and become a problem. To avoid spills on wheelchairs, if the person is going to eat while sitting in a wheelchair, have them pushed close to a table. Clothes protectors (aka bibs) are often large enough to drape over the wheelchair. Plastic or towels can be over put over the exposed wheelchair parts, also.

WHEELCHAIR BRAKES OR LOCKS

For the wheel chair brakes or locks they should be kept free of debris and to prevent a loose fit when the chair is locked. Wiping regularly will prevent that.

ELECTRIC WHEELCHAIRS

It is important to follow the manufacturer’s directions and avoid water or other fluids to come in contact with electrical parts. This could void the warranty and also be a safety hazard. The non-electrical parts can be wiped down and cleaned regularly. Be sure cleaner doesn’t drip onto electrical parts.

Wheelchairs last longer when kept clean and in good repair. When cleaning and repair just isn’t working for a wheelchair, it may be time for a new wheelchair. For wheelchair purchases, rentals, and repairs when you are in the Miami, Florida area, contact Medical Equipment Solutions.

Why Do People Keep Fish As Pets?

Fish are probably the lowest maintenance of all pets. They do not need your company. They do not need grooming. You do not need to train them. You never need to exercise your fish.

Fish can be fed once daily, or if you need to go away for the weekend, you can get slow release food that will last a couple of days.

Fish will never chew your slippers, bite your guests or soil your rug.

Fish are silent, so the neighbours will not complain about the noise.

You only need a space the size of your fish tank to keep fish.

Fish will not cover your clothes and furniture in loose hair. They do not shed hair so fish do not aggravate allergies in sufferers.

At the end of a stressful day, there is nothing more relaxing than sitting back watching fish gracefully floating through the crystal water.

The cost of setting up a simple goldfish tank with a couple of goldfish is very moderate. Their food does not cost much and one container lasts for months. There are no other costs for the basic set up. Compared to the cost of a cat or dog, this is very cheap.

If you want variety, you cannot beat the range available. You can buy larger tanks, pumps, filters, heaters, plants and decorations. You can buy exotic fish and choose between tropical, salt water and freshwater tanks. There are plenty of different ways to enhance your fish keeping experience, if you choose to get more involved.

You do need some knowledge of the types of fish and their natural habitation. You can learn a lot from the internet but the best knowledge comes from people who keep the fish themselves. Find a good aquarium keeper, as many pet shop owners do not have a good knowledge of fish keeping. Maybe you would be interested in joining a club. Members would be a good source of valuable information on fish keeping.

Visit people who keep large tanks of exotic fish. Look at the way their tanks are set up. The ones I like best are the natural ones. They look like a window into the sea, with plants and a variety of fish life, including snails and many different sizes of fish. If you prefer a fun look, there are plenty of ornaments you can arrange to make an interesting scene. The ornaments are good for hiding the equipment, like pumps and air bubblers.

Keeping fish can be a rewarding and interesting hobby. They allow people with demanding careers to enjoy pets without the inconvenience of grooming, training, exercising and companionship demands of other pets. They are also very beautiful creatures.

Best Rug Pad For Needlepoint Rugs to Keep Them Flat

The beauty of needlepoint rugs lies in the fact that they are handmade and flat weave. This flat weave creates a certain look that is almost like having a painting on your floor. Since needlepoint are thin and could be quite flexible, it is important to have the best rug pad to keep them as flat and wrinkle free as possible, as well as keeping the needlepoint rug from sliding.

I hear people ask me if they should put a thick rug pad under their needlepoint carpet to add comfort. Well, some cushion is fine yet too thick of a pad would not keep the rug flat. The needlepoint rug does not have any pile and hence no substantial weight to keep it from buckling on top of a thick and very cushioned pad. The best rug pad for this is one that has a little cushion and a lot of non slip function.

A jute and rubber combination rug pad is best for needlepoint rugs. This contains has a recycled jute surface that is textured. This textured surface safely grabs your needlepoint. The bottom of this pad consists of a layer of natural rubber that safely grabs to the floor. Now, you have a rug pad that is grabbing your carpet and the floor and this is the best way to keep your needlepoint rug flat, wrinkle free and looking the way it should. The pad is needle punched and this means it is dense enough to keep your needlepoint rug still when people are walking on it. It is 1/4 of an inch thick to add some comfort without lifting your needlepoint too high off the floor.

With the right rug pad under your needlepoint, your rug will last a lifetime. vacuuming will be easier as the rug pad grabs your rug. Walking will no longer cause wrinkles in your rug and finally, your rug will remain flat and this is the look that is best for a needlepoint rug.

This type of pad comes in various qualities. I would only use the one that contains recycled jute, not a synthetic chemical, and a real layer of rubber underneath, not a sprayed on latex rubber. The sprays tend to breakdown and mark your floors.

Natural Remedies and Home Treatments for Gout

There are two types of natural remedies popularly used for gout, few are the ones which are specifically for pain relief to promote movement and comfort the sufferer, and other ones are focused on eradication of the problem to provide cure and prevent attacks in the future. Treatment for gout is long and regular that is why natural remedies are preferred over drugs and pharmaceuticals as natural treatment does not cause any harm to health by causing side effects. Production of uric acid is a normal process of the body, over production of uric acid or improper excretion of this acid leads to higher level of acid in the blood which in long run forms crystals, these gets deposited in the joints to cause pain and problems during the movement. Along with natural remedies, healthy habits like exercises and proper rest and sleep also play a crucial role in the effective treatment of the problem.

Gout is known to affect big toe first in the body, if one feels pain in the big toe taking charcoal bath can relieve the pain, mix half cup of charcoal powder in the water to form a paste, later place the toe in the paste and pour water till foot is covered, allow it to stay for 30 minutes for quick relief from the pain. Placing grounded ginger on the aching joint for at least 15 minutes can also relieve the pain quickly. Ice packs also relieve the pain caused due to gout condition, Epsom salt water bath are also used as pain relieving natural remedies for gout. Capsaicin creams are natural remedies for pain relief, topical application of these creams on the affected joints can relieve the pain immediately and for sufficient duration. Some people have found chewing 4-5 garlic cloves as an effective way to relieve gout pain. All of these remedies are for pain relief and cannot cure the problem but they are helpful in providing immediate comfort and promote movement.

For curing gout, lemon juice is very effective remedy as the high vitamin C content in the juice reduces the level of uric acid in the body by dissolving it and helping the body in its proper excretion. Drinking juice of half lemon mixed with a glass of water three times in a day is a good natural remedy. Increased intake of apples is also helpful in reducing uric acid level in the body. French beans juice one glass a day or carrot juice mixed with beet and cucumber juice in equal quantities are excellent natural remedies for gout as these help in dissolving excess uric acid in the body.

Indian gooseberry or Amla is one of the most effective herbs for treating gout as it has highest vitamin C content amongst all the easily available herbs. Consuming two to three fresh fruits of amla either as salad ingredient or in powder form is an excellent natural remedy for gout. Amla shall be consumed without using salt with it. Alfalfa leaves are also very effective in treating gout as it is a rich source of various minerals which are good at reducing uric acid levels. Increased in take of bananas at least 4-5 fruits everyday also helps in curing gout.

The Different Types Of Thermometer And Their Use

There are many different types of thermometer on the market. Whether you’re checking the temperature of food and drinks, monitoring room or outdoor temperatures at the workplace, choosing a thermometer for a child’s medical kit, or taking critically important industrial measurements, it’s vitally important to choose the thermometer(s) best suited to the job at hand.

In today’s market, more thermometers are used without firstly being checked for traceable accuracy, or suitability of purpose, yet the accuracy and suitability of your thermometer to its intended application could be the difference between passing and failing a health & safety audit, wasting a whole industrial process, or being correct the first time.

When you’re choosing a thermometer, it’s important to understand its associated application, temperature measurement range, resolution, accuracy, and the maintenance required to achieve repeatable measurements. Some applications will require you to achieve a much more accurate reading than others. You’ll also need to consider the environment in which the thermometer is used. In a professional environment, the accuracy of your reading will ultimately affect the credibility of your future measurements, and organisation as a whole.

So, let’s briefly consider the types of thermometer on the market, and their accredited application(s).

Traditional Thermometers (Spirit Filled)

Often the cheapest and most popular type of thermometer, these are ideal for use at home or in non-specialist environments where traceable accuracy is not required. They have a spirit level indication, are easy to read, and typically measure in both degrees C and degrees F. They can often be wall mounted or submerged in liquids, and require very little maintenance. These thermometers have variable measurement ranges, resolutions and accuracy.

Dual Sensor / Multiple Sensor Thermometers

Often used in a professional environment, these thermometers allow the simultaneous monitoring of two or more environments over both short and long periods of time. They are ideal for applications such as indoor and outdoor temperature comparisons, the monitoring of storage areas, and classroom maintenance. A package normally consists of a main display unit and external temperature sensors. Each external sensor reading is displayed on the main unit. The main unit can typically be wall or desk mounted, and traceable accuracy is recommended. These thermometers have variable measurement ranges, resolutions and accuracy.

Irreversible Temperature Labels

Temperature indicator labels are self-adhesive temperature proofing foils. They are ideal for use in processes where specific temperature values need to be achieved, such as sterilisation. They are also suitable for use where temperature values should not be exceeded, such as engine or bearing monitoring. They are a relatively cheap, yet effective way to achieve permanent records of accuracy. Each foil segment on a label is sensitive to a different temperature and when exposed to its rating will turn black. Each segment has both °C and °F temperature values. Each label is oil and water resistant, and the colour change is irreversible even after the object being measured cools down. After use, labels can be removed. These thermometers have variable measurement ranges, resolutions and accuracy.

Fixed & Wired Probe Thermometers

Fixed probe thermometers are designed to deliver instant temperature readings of foods, liquids and semi-solid samples via its fixed probe, which will be suitable for both immersion and penetration. They are ideal for use in the catering trade for hygiene testing, retail outlets, and laboratories. Being very easy to use and highly portable, probes will vary in size, material, and manoeuvrability. Wired probe thermometers are similar to fixed probe thermometers, the difference being that the probe is attached to the thermometer via a wire. This maximises utility without compromising accuracy. Traceable accuracy is recommended if used in a professional environment. These thermometers have variable measurement ranges, resolutions and accuracy.

K-Type Thermometers

K-Type thermometers deal with extreme temperatures and are normally found in laboratories and industry. They cater for applications requiring high precision, and can facilitate a range of interchangeable plug in probes for air, liquid, penetration and surface temperature measurements. They’re often the best choice of thermometer if you have several applications in one professional environment. They offer wide temperature measurement ranges, high accuracy, and fast measurement response times. Non-slip function buttons and impact-resistant casing make these thermometers ideal for use in harsh working environments. Probes will vary in size, material, and manoeuvrability, and traceable accuracy is recommended if used in a professional environment. These thermometers have variable measurement ranges, resolutions and accuracy.

Data Logging Thermometers

Data logging thermometers allow continuous temperature measurements to be displayed in real-time, or downloaded and stored to PCs or Laptop computers. They are designed to record temperature history in critical areas such as storage rooms, transportation, and laboratories, and are ideal if you’d like to submit regular records to management, auditors, or work colleagues. The recorded measurements can be attached to emails or reports, and is great for fault finding or traceability in controlled environments. A user may select the logging rate, start time, alarm limits, and logging mode. The supplied analysis software provides a graphical display of data, showcasing the total readings, a zoom facility for individual readings, and a visual indication of alarm levels throughout the logging period. Traceable accuracy is recommended if used in a professional environment, and again, these thermometers have variable measurement ranges, resolutions and accuracy.

Infrared Thermometers

Infrared thermometers are designed for non-contact measurement of very high / low surface temperatures, and are frequently equipped with a laser to measure radiated heat. They are suitable for temperature measurements of air conditioning systems, transport and automotive spot checks, and food preparation surfaces. It’s not as simple to operate these thermometers as some suppliers would have you believe. It’s not point; pull the trigger, read the measurement. Important factors to consider before measuring are laser spot-size, and the emissivity value of the surface being measured. The error in the accuracy of a measured value can be as much as 30% of the reading just based on emissivity. Traceable accuracy is recommended if used in a professional environment. These thermometers have variable measurement ranges, resolutions and accuracy.

Thermal Image Cameras

Thermal image cameras allow immediate identification of hot and cold areas via thermal imagery. They are ideal for detecting hidden problems, surveying buildings to find moisture and leaks, identifying energy loss and poor insulation, electrical faults, and detecting plumbing issues. Some cameras facilitate the download of imagery to PCs or Laptop computers. The recorded data can then be attached to emails or reports, and is great for fault finding or traceability in controlled environments. Some models include a correction for emissivity and reflected temperature. Again, there will be variable measurement ranges, resolutions and accuracy.

If you can choose the thermometer best suited to your intended application, AND provide traceable instrument calibration to an auditor, you can always be assured of your measurement’s creditability. If you’re unsure of a thermometer’s suitability, always consult the help of a professional body.

Table Tennis Rubbers – The Elusive DHS Hurricane National and Provincial Versions

There is no doubt that the DHS hurricane II and III rubbers are one of the most popular in the world, partially because it’s so commonly used in China. No doubt the marketing and sponsoring by DHS has a lot to do with this, but the fact the many of the top Chinese players use this rubber does indicate that they have some very good properties.

It is well known that the top Chinese players may not be using the same version as the commercial version that’s available to the public. DHS has special versions of the hurricane rubbers for their Provincial and National team players. Whether these rubbers are actually manufactured differently, or whether they are hand-picked as the best ones from the production of the standard version is unknown. However according to DHS they ARE hand picked from the normal production run.

The standard commercial versions have an orange sponge for both the red and black rubbers. It is well known that there is significant variation in sponge hardness between batch to batch, or possible within each batch. This is due to different cuts of the sponge mass being used to make the individual rubbers. Sponge hardness varies within the sponge mass before the individual sponges are cut off.

DHS also produce a special commercial version with a blue sponge. This one is only made in black, because the red topsheet is too translucent, so a dark sponge would darken the red significantly, most likely beyond what’s allowed under ITTF regulations. This blue sponge is known to be a little softer and more flexible, and also reacts better with speed glue. This version is not as commonly available as it’s not part of their normal production runs.

Among DHS fans there is always talk about the national and provincial version. According to those that have tried the ‘real thing’, the sheets appear of better quality, are more flexible and have a softer sponge. There are special markings on the sponge indicating that these are special version, but the markings don’t always seem the same. They also do not come in the standard packaging, which makes sense as these rubbers are not commercially sold, so fancy packaging is not required. However there are also a lot of fakes sheet around which try to mimic the characteristics and markings on the rubber.

DHS used to sell their topsheets separately. This made it easy for the less reputable companies to add their own cheap sponge and markings, and sell it for a lot more than the commercial version. After this had been going on for several years, DHS recently decided to stop selling the topsheets separately, in order to cut down on the number of fake sheet around. There are however still a lot of fake sheets around.

According to DHS, the provincial and national versions of the hurricane rubbers are not sold to the public at all. They are only GIVEN to the national and provincial teams for their personal use. Of course there is always a big temptation for these players to make a quick buck, and sell these rubbers to other players and retailers, so this is how these rubbers find their way to the public.

According to DHS most of the provincial and national rubbers out there for sale are indeed fakes. In the last year or so more and more of these rubbers are sold by some online retailers and even on Ebay, all of course claiming them to be genuine. According to DHS these rubbers were not supplied to them by DHS, and the number of provincial and national version are quite limited, so chances are that these rubbers are not genuine. As some of these sellers are known to be quite reputable, and sell many other genuine items, it is most likely that they themselves believe the rubbers are genuine. Whether they are genuine or not, we cannot be sure.

There are ways of making the commercial versions a lot more like the provincial/national versions;

One way is to speed glue them… with enough layers to really soften them up. After this has been done a number of times, the sheet become more flexible and the sponge softer permanently… making it play a lot closer to the provincial/national version.

Another way is to use the so-called ‘super priming’ method which is a treatment of many layers of VOC based glue, which certainly has a permanent effect and works very well. It works best on the blue sponge version, but still works very well on the orange sponged version too. This is certainly a much cheaper way of getting a hurricane rubber softer and more flexible, and a lot more like the provincial/national version… and best of all you don’t have to worry about whether is genuine or not!

So is it worth paying the extra money to get a provincial or national version, without being 100% sure that it’s genuine? You be the judge…

Why Is Ethibond Polyester Suture a Good Choice for Cardiovascular Surgery?

There are several different suture materials used in precise and safe wound closure. Preferably, the choice of the suture material should be based on the biological interaction of the materials employed, the tissue configuration, and the biomechanical properties of the wound. An example of a suture that can be used in such cases is Ethibond suture. It belongs to the class of non absorbable sutures. It is a polyester suture that is composed of fibers of polyethylene terephthalate, which is a synthetic linear polyester resulting when glycol is reacted with a dibasic acid. The polyesters are long chains with a high molecular weight and aromatic rings that recur again and again as a vital part of the compound. Examples of polyester sutures include Surgidac, TiCron made by Syneture Covidien and Ethibond Excel and Ethibond, made by Ethicon.

These polyester sutures were the first man-made braided suture material made known to last for an indefinite period in tissues. Their acceptance in surgery was confined to a small section in the beginning because the suture had a high coefficient of friction. This used to get in the way of the passage through tissue and hampered the construction of a knot. However, with the increase in scientific technology, it was soon learned that these sutures could be coated with a lubricant. Thus, Ethibond sutures gained wide acceptance in surgery. This coating markedly reduced the suture’s coefficient of friction, thereby assisting in knot construction and passage through tissue. All TiCron polyester sutures are coated with silicone, while the surface lubricant for Surgidac is Polybutylene adipate. Due to some surgeons liking to tie sutures with a high coefficient of friction, Surgidac sutures are also obtainable without a surface coating.

Ethibond Excel sutures are uniformly coated with polybutilate, a biologically non reactive and non absorbable compound that attaches itself to the braided polyester fiber strand. This was the first synthetic coating developed specifically as a surgical suture lubricant. The coating eases the passage of the braided strands through tissue and provides excellent pliability, handling qualities, and smooth tie down with each throw of the knot. Both the suture material and the coating are pharmacologically inactive. The sutures draw out negligible tissue reaction and retain their tensile strength in vivo for long periods of time. No significant change is known to occur in vivo. Ethibond Excel sutures are used primarily in cardiovascular surgery, for vessel anastomosis, and placement of prosthetic materials. Anastomosis is the joining together of two organs or vessels that are usually hollow, this is why any preferred brand of polyester suture will work beautifully in valve replacement procedures world wide.

Ethibond Excel is available in two forms, green when dyed and white when not dyed. Ethibond Excel sutures are also available attached to TFE polymer felt pledgets. These are small flat absorbent pads used to medicate, drain, save a wound from harm or serve to put off possible tearing of adjacent friable tissue. They are used on a regular basis in valve replacement procedures. This is to prevent the annulus from tearing when the prosthetic valve is seated and the sutures are tied. They are also used in situations where extreme deformity, distortion, or tissue destruction occurred.

How To Catch Any Fish – Fishing For Giant Trevally (Ulua) With Bait and Lures

Description

Giant Trevally (called “Ulua” in Hawaiian; “GT” in Australia) have been an obsession of mine since childhood. Growing up in Hawaii they were the ultimate near shore gamefish. They are the largest member of the Jack family and are the kings of the reefs where they live. You see them on bumper stickers a lot down there for whatever reason. However, despite several close encounters, I was not able to finally land one until age 34.

Giant Trevally live in tropical reefs throughout the Pacific and Indian Ocean. They are pure muscle and a very, very tough adversary even on heavy tackle. They typically charge out of the reef, grab your lure, and then charge back in and brick you in the rocks.

I had one trip to the Republic of the Marshall Islands where every single Giant Trevally I hooked broke me off in the rocks. I was only using 50lb braided line and that was not enough to land a single one, even ones that I could see were only in the 10lb range. I never underestimated them after that and do not fish for them with less than 100lb braid.

Giant Trevally top out around 200lbs but fish that size are nearly impossible to land on sportfishing tackle because there is almost no way to keep them out of the reef. The hook will bend, the line or rod will snap, or something will give before a fish that size will. Anything over 100lbs is a real trophy.

Tackle

If you are fishing for these using poppers or stickbaits, you need a very stout spinning or conventional setup capable of making long casts with these heavy lures. I would not go with less than 100lb braided line and a 200lb monofilament leader (poppers) or 100lb fluorocarbon leader (stickbaits). The only reel I would fish with is a Daiwa Saltiga. I would pair it with a high end rod from Japan made specifically for this type of fishing such as a Smith Komodo Dragon (poppers) or a Carpenter Coral Viper (stickbaits).

If you are fishing with bait from shore as is common in Hawaii most people use a conventional reel with a long rod for casting past the rocks. You need a reel that can hold a lot of line since you can’t chase the fish. I personally have not caught any this way.

Whatever tackle you use, make sure everything is in top condition. If there is any weakness in anything – hooks, split rings, lure, line, knots, rods, etc – you might as well not even both hooking them in the first place because the fight will be over immediately. Hyperwire split rings from Owner are a good choice when you need to use a split ring.

Techniques

Giant Trevally readily eat baits but are much, much more fun to catch on topwater lures.

Lures

Giant Trevally love large poppers such as those made by Heru, Halco, and many other manufacturers. You cast them as far as you can, and then retrieve them with long sweeps of the rod so that the poppers kick up a lot of water. You should vary your retrieve speed to figure out what they like. The strike is often dramatic as they launch out of the water in a shower of spray trying to annihilate your popper. As with all topwater lure fishing, you have to wait until you feel weight on the end of your line before setting the hook as the fish often miss the lure on the first try.

Giant Trevally also love stickbaits such as those made by Heru and Orion. You can use either surface or subsurface stickbaits; my preference is subsurface. With the subsurface stickbaits you can’t see the strike coming, so all of a sudden you just feel a violent yank as the fish tries to pull your arm out of its socket. When fishing over a reef you have to be careful that your expensive stickbait doesn’t sink into the rocks.

No matter how you fish for them, make sure you get a solid hookset. They often grab the lures in their mouths and hold them so tightly that the hooks don’t penetrate and then they just spit the lure out. Set the hook hard multiple times. To increase your chances, replace all treble hooks with heavy single hooks. They almost always grab the lure head first. You can get away with just a single hook suspended from the head although I like to add a hook at the rear to catch other species that might bite.

Baits

I never fish for them with bait but I know in Hawaii octopus and eels are popular baits to use from shore.

Where to get the big ones

The Great Barrier Reef and New Caledonia have some big ones that can be caught on poppers and stickbaits. Indonesia has some good GT fishing, as does Fiji and many of the remote Pacific atolls. I have also heard about some good GT fishing in Oman of all places.

Living in the Philippines – Best "Passive" Businesses to Start

For those OFW’s and foreigners wishing to start a business, but not wishing to involve themselves with the stress of a business involving day-to-day operations, employees, landlords, inventory, and so forth, there are several available opportunities for foreigners living in the Philippines. Buy fixer upper properties, improve them, then rent or sell them.

1. Buy Fixer Upper Properties, Improve Them, Then Rent or Sell Them. This is a great business for those of you who have experience in your home country in buying, fixing up and renting or selling properties. Over the past 10 years, a lot of people got involved in this kind of business in their homeland.

With the overall economic problems in the world the past couple of years, the Philippines has not been immune, and there are a lot of properties in a state of disrepair, as well as lot of distressed and foreclosed properties.

2. Build An Apartelle. An Apartelle is an apartment building where all but one of the units are rented out long term, and you are left to operate on a nightly or weekly basis, like a hotel – hence the combined name of apartelle. These are common in the Philippines.

This business will require a heavier capital investment, yet with the right property and by focusing in the more rural areas or smaller cities, you can construct a small 4 unit apartment building for Peso 3,000,000 – not counting cost of the land.

You would want to rent out 3 units on a long term rental basis, and keep one for short term rentals – for the many traveling salesmen that frequent the countryside. They like booking into such short term apartelle units rather than the much more expensive hotels in the area.

3. Condotels. I have not given this business my “thumbs up” in all instances. Condotels have been heavily touted and promoted the past several years and there have been many, many new condominiums built in Manila, and now even in Cebu and starting in Davao.

The problem is that although the developers offer great down payment terms (usually around 30% down financed over 3 years) and in some cases carry back the mortgage and finance for perhaps 10 years, the interest rates are incredibly high, and the split of rentals with the management team runs around 50%/50%. There is also always a nominal monthly maintenance fee.

What looks like “cheap” entry point and cash flow out each month, in many cases simply becomes a bet on long term property appreciation – finding someone willing to pay you more for it than you paid for it.

This is because with all the inventory on hand, there is a surplus of condos which have been into hotel type rental pools, but not enough visitors to rent them all.

Consequently, what an investor thought would be a good positive cash cow, turns out to be a continuous negative cash flow – not what a new retiree to the Philippines is looking for to supplement his pension or annuity! This type investment will only drain you pension.

However, having written all this, I HAVE FOUND the past several month two exceptional condotel investments which DO meet my criteria of creating good ongoing rental income.

4. Farming. The likely cessation of the Agrarian Land Reform Program (CARP) will give the rural sector renewed confidence to invest in agricultural production capacity. CARP has held back investment in both production capacity as well as farm acquisition. An end to CARP will mean higher land prices since land will be valued for its higher income producing potential.

However, higher land prices are simply a “serendipity”, an added value, to the type of farming business I am writing about. I have found an extremely unique business opportunity, which will generate a great ROI (return on investment) and is completely passive. It has been structured by the developers (all foreigners) to be a one turnkey investment price. The price includes cost of the land, plus all

Clearing, planting, cultivation and harvesting for the first 5 years.

The business has been priced to fit the capital investment budget of the average foreigner retiree, and all landowners will be members of a cooperative which will share the farming equipment (tractors, equipment shed, and others). The farm will be “farmed” by the developer’s management team

The hottest trend now is in organic farming, and yet it is only in its infancy stage in the Philippines. There is one export product in particular which has caught my attention – the pili nut. The Philippines is the ONLY country with which produces and processes this nut in commercial quantity.

The current status of the pili is equivalent to that of the macadamia some 30 years ago. It has huge potential to develop into a major industry. They are in demand not only in Hong Kong and Taiwan but also in Singapore, Korea and Austria.

How Long Does it Take to Lose Belly Fat and Get Six Pack Abs

How long does it take to lose belly fat and get a nice defined stomach? The answer depends on a couple of factors. We’re going to talk about 4 main factors today that are going to influence your ability to lose weight and lose it quickly.

1) Your body type, which is going to be heavily influenced by genetics
2) Fat cells
3) Diet
4) Exercise

There are three main classifications of body types: ectomorphs, mesomorphs and endomorphs. Ectomorphs have a tendency to be naturally slim and have high energy levels. They never really have a problem losing weight. I am more of an ectomorph. I have a tough time gaining weight and a tough time putting on muscle. It’s easy for me to lose weight, especially if I miss any meals. Ectomorphs are, well, ectomorphy!

Mesomorphs are your 100 meter sprinters, your Arnold Schwarzenegger. They have a high metabolism like the ectomorphs but they have an easier time putting on muscle mass.

Gaining weight is very easy and gaining muscle is very easy for mesomorphs which means that losing weight is very easy for them too because they have a lot of muscle which means they have a higher basal metabolic rate and they burn more calories. It is easiest for the mesomorphs to gain muscle definition.

The endomorphs have the short end of the stick when it comes to losing fat. I will be honest with you, if you are someone who is a little more round, have an easy time holding onto weight and a tougher time losing it, it’s not going to be an easy road to muscle definition.

There could be an association with low thyroid functioning that decreases your metabolism which compounds the issue. If you are an endomorph then pay special attention to all of these lessons.

It is important to realize that depending on which body type you most dominantly exhibit (and we are not one or the other, but really a combination of all three) if you are more of an endomorph, it is going to take a lot more work and diligence than someone who is more of an ectomorph or a mesomorph to lose fat and see more definition.

You can see my muscles no problem. If I want to lose fat it takes me no time at all, but if you ask me to put a couple of inches on my biceps then we’re talking about me being in the gym 24/7 doing serious workouts. It would take a lot of hard work. It’s the same thing with an endomorph.

If you want to lose weight as an endomorph it is going to take a lot of hard work because you are working against your body’s nature to some degree. But, it can be done and millions of people are doing it right now. So if you are in that category, keep your chin up and know that you can do it. We’re going to show you in these lessons how it can be done.

In regards to getting where you want to go as far as muscle definition, it’s going to depend a lot on where you are right now. In the second lesson we talked about fat cells and fat cell receptors.

Today I want to talk about the fat cell itself. Fat cells are known as adipocytes. They hold onto fat as stored energy. Certain receptors on the fat cell allow hormones to influence them such as hormone sensitive lipase and break down the fat into fatty acids to be taken out of the body through the blood and used for energy.

I think it was as recently as 2007 that researchers discovered the adipose gene. This is a gene that determines your fat cell makeup. Generally, an adult has about 30 billion fat cells. Common thinking used to be that you were born with a set number of fat cells, but this might not be the case.

In general, if you are at a healthy weight as an adult, you acquired all of your fat cells before you hit puberty. Puberty is the closing window for any new development of fat cells. If you are a fairly lean adult, you will have the same number of fat cells throughout your lifetime.

Now, if you put on excessive weight even in your adult years, new research shows that these fat cells can grow up to 4-fold and begin to multiply. That is a very scary concept. Instead of having 30 billion fat cells, if you gain excessive weight you can have 40 or 50 billion or more fat cells in your body.

This is just another reason to lead an active lifestyle and stay fairly fit and healthy. You do not need more fat cells. Fat cells operate much like a balloon. If you fill a balloon with water it will expand and as soon as you release it, the balloon will contract back to its very small size.

When you lose weight, fat cells shrink. Fat cells do not disappear but they can multiply – so be wary of that. You don’t want any more fat cells, so the key is diminishing fat stores by using fat for energy purposes.

This is why exercise is so important.

Something you must know about fat is that stores acid in the body. This is why alkalinity is so important in the diet. If your fat cells are holding into a lot of acid, it’s going to be very tough for your body to get rid of your fat stores because they need to be there in order to hold onto the acid. But that is a topic for another day.

If you are an ectomorph, you have most likely been able to get away with eating whatever you want during your life. You may be able to eat fast food every day and not put on weight, but the problem is that you can be fit without being healthy.

If you are eating garbage foods, you are not doing your body any good on the inside. You may not physically show any weight gain but to be healthy and fit you must eat the proper nutrients. Trust me, you will look and feel much, much better than you do right now if you start eating whole foods.

As an endomorph you have to be very strict and diligent with your diet. As you most likely know, if you have the wrong foods in your diet such as refined carbohydrates for instance, you will tend to retain water and put on weight easily.

Hopefully you are listening to your body enough so that you can relate the foods you eat to how you feel. It is important to have that body awareness. If you don’t have a clue how foods affect the way you feel, now is a good time to start making those connections between food and mood.

As an endomorph who wants to lose belly fat and really start to see some definition, you need to pay attention to your diet. You need to make sure that you are in that caloric deficit that we talked about earlier.

You need to make sure that you are eating nutrient dense foods and you need to stay away from strictly carbohydrate-rich, nutrition-less foods such as chocolate bars, pastries, refined bread, sodas, etc. Eat lots of vegetables. Vegetables are very high in nutrients and they act to burn calories because of their thermic effect.

They have a lot of fiber which means that the body has to spend a lot of time digesting them which means that your body burns calories doing so.

Mesomorphs can pretty much eat more or less how ectomorphs can – but it doesn’t mean they should! In general, everyone should stay away from refined carbohydrates. Even if something is made with 100% whole wheat, it is no good.

Stick to the pseudo-grains such as amaranth, quinoa, millet, spelt, etc. Those grains are easier for your body to digest. Wheat is very difficult for your body to digest and a lot of people have issues digesting wheat which can lead to bloating.

One of the reasons it is difficult to have a flat stomach is food sensitivity. If you remove the foods to which you are sensitive, you will have an easier time seeing a flat stomach.

Whether of not you obtain that flat stomach depends a lot on where you are with your diet. If you are an endomorph, again, you’ve got to do a bit more work and be more diligent than an ectomorph or a mesomorph.

If you are a man with less than 10% body fat, you should see muscle definition. If you are a woman, any body fat % lower than the mid-teens should show muscular definition. You don’t want to go too low with your body fat percentage. A certain amount is important to have for energy purposes.

Let’s talk about exercise. If you are an endomorph you will want to spend more time doing cardio as well as strength training. Your body demands more effort if you are looking to burn fat. Endomorphs are looking at 3-4 cardio sessions a week and a minimum of 3 strength training workouts per week.

The goal in your workouts should be intensity. Your workouts should be no longer than an hour at high intensity. If you are an ectomorph, you don’t need to go crazy on the cardio because you are already fairly slim.

The tough thing for ectomorphs is building muscle, so spend more of your time doing full body strength training workouts to build a bit of size and maintain your lean muscle mass. If you are going to do cardio, which you should, keep it short and intense and keep it intervals. I would say 20 minutes three times a week is fine.

Mesomorphs have a bit of leeway because they are naturally blessed. Mesomorphs should incorporate both cardio and strength training in one fashion or another.

I wish I could tell you exactly how long it will take. I wish I could tell you that if you follow my advice you will see results in exactly 7 days, but it doesn’t work like that.

Anyone who makes those ridiculous claims is someone that you should run away from. A given program is not going to produce the same results for two different people. Everyone is unique.

The way that you respond to your food intake and your exercise is going to be very different from someone else. There are so many factors involved. With exercise, there is the intensity, how long you are working out for, what muscle groups you are targeting, etc. There are all sorts of variables.

The goal is to maintain that long-term vision of what you want to achieve and be committed to achieving it. Realize as we talked about in earlier lessons that it is going to take time.

From a general fat loss perspective, 1-2 lbs of fat loss per week is healthy. Over the week, you must create a 7000 calorie deficit to lose 2 lbs. It’s not easy, but it can be done.

Stay committed no matter what. And don’t rely on the scale.

Pay attention to how your clothes fit. Some people may not notice a difference on the scale but they notice a lowering of body fat percentage in the mirror and in their clothes. That is the true mark of improving your health and your fitness.

Child Behavior: When Nothing Else Works, Consider These 7 Strategies:

Parents are saying discipline, consequences, time out and sticker’s don’t work. Parents are presenting as more and more defeated when it comes to managing the behavior of their children. They have a long list of tried that – didn’t work scenarios including many of the more popular parenting programs. What’s up with that? Why does it seem near impossible to get kids to listen? What can parents do differently?

To know what to do differently, we first need to appreciate what’s at play creating challenges out of children’s behavior and undermining parental authority. This brief history of the world is needed – or at least a brief history of the past 70 years. It goes like this:

1950’s: Intact two parent families with a primary breadwinner and a primary homemaker;

1960’s: Women’s Movement begins and gender equality begins to be examined publicly;

1970’s: No-fault divorce appears in many jurisdictions, divorce rate begins to climb;

1980’s: Praise your kids was the new mantra in parenting;

1990’s: As the economy tanks and rebounds, good paying jobs go and more families require two income earners. At issues is latch key kids;

2000’s: From computers in bedrooms, to video games to the introduction of the iPhone and then android operating system, technology consumes our attention and this generation;

2010’s: Technology abounds and usage has increased throughout all age groups, right down to infants with strollers adapted to hold iPads and wristbands to count our every step. We tell children the world is a dangerous place and they need to stay electronically tethered to stay safe. We wonder why children generally are more anxious than ever before.

Consider the above from the experience of the child and it’s impact on child development. Despite the good that is brought about from these changes, there are still unintended negative consequences.

Children have gone from having continuous access to a parent to marginally direct contact nowhere near the levels of the good ol’ days. Now this is not to suggest that those olden days were necessarily good or bad, but that from a child’s perspective they have less and less access to support, supervision and a parental role model for the transmission of morals and values. These days, even when we have proximity to each other, with both parent and child answering the pull of the smart phone, we are not really with each other.

We are less and less available to help them when they do fall, keep them directly safe from harm and simply enjoy each others company – all key to the child feeling safe, secure, loved and of value. To add, as we over praise and don’t hold children as accountable as before, their sense of they can do no wrong grows. Bring in a mix of parental guilt for lack of availability assuaged with consumer purchases and we add indulged to the list of growing concerns. All at once we appear hyper-vigilant, yet remarkably disconnected.

We are so removed from our kids as a society and all due to social, economic and technological change that we don’t realize the creeping disconnect that has infected child development. Society has shifted and children’s mental health is the price. Our kids are more and more footloose and fancy free independent and without the real maturity to direct appropriate behavior over the wants of impulses driven by immediate satisfaction.

Parents, feeling embarrassed or shameful or guilty about their child’s issues fear being blamed. Parents and teachers are pitted against each other as schools try to manage the fallout of all this in the classroom and parents seek to hold the educational system accountable to socialize their kids.

It’s time to stop the madness, take a step back and recognize that these seismic shifts in society yield unintended consequences. We have a generation of rudderless disconnected kids. Of course in this context the usual parenting strategies become ineffective. To begin with, our children don’t recognize our authority and many harbor an unstated resentment for our lack of connection. It comes out as behavior. Thus when we seek to punish, take things away, badger and discipline, from the child’s perspective we are only widening the disconnect and escalating the resentment.

Managing child behavior has and will always be determined by the quality of the relationship between the adult and the child. The degree to which we are connected to our children, provide directly for their sense of safety, security and love, we have greater influence and legitimacy in their lives. It is time to restore those connections. Bear in mind, it will seem a tad weird to the child for whom this may be a new experience given their upbringing in the past ten years, versus ours of some 30 years ago.

The parenting strategies to re-mediate child behavior and mental health concerns of this age and time are all about learning how to connect meaningfully as determined from an emotional and attachment perspective. Without going into the theory of this, consider these practices:

Turn off your technology when you walk through the door. Hunt your child down and give them a kiss hello before anything else.

Have technology free periods of the day/week with your child.

Count the number of times you have a meal with your child. Going back some 50 years, and out of 21 opportunities a week, the number back then would have been near 21. Whatever your count, consider how you can increase it.

Take your child’s face gently and directly between your hands and tell your child outright, you love her/him. Do so daily.

Keep the tablet or smart phone out of the bedroom at least at bedtime. Buy an old fashioned alarm clock if needed.

Resist consumer purchases when begged by your child or if to assuage your guilt. Instead, spend time with your child when you feel triggered to make a purchase on their behalf.

When your child acts inappropriately, think less about the consequence you will levy and the fight to hold them accountable and think more about sharing a little disappointment and that you think they are better than that. Let your child know you love him or her but that seeing the misdeed makes you feel sad. Do not come from a place of anger or hostility, but concern and love. Label your feelings so that your child may come to understand his or hers. Connect emotionally.

Of course we value our kids and want what is best for them. The issue isn’t bad parents, but these societal shifts acting beyond our awareness. Societal changes have subtly interrupted parental availability, connection and influence. These 7 strategies are all about counter-balancing and reclaiming the parental role to enable connection. Parents can begin the process at home. The 7 strategies are a start.

As odd as it seems, your kids may find the change unsettling at first. They may try to resist. They are used to getting what they want, acting with limited accountability and believing they do not wrong. Those attitudes have been built in structurally through the fabric of societal change.

The challenge of parenting today is recognizing and working in the midst of that changing tide and not being driven off course by the resistance of the child who may not want to give up the trappings of an indulged lifestyle. It is as if the child needs to learn that good relationships and emotional connections really do feel better than stuff or things.

Finding ways such as suggested above is the antidote. Being connected to your kids through direct availability is key. With an intact and meaningful connection, parents may not even need many of the discipline strategies we used to talk about. We will have settled the dis-ease and underlying resentment affecting so many children today. We may just all feel better and be better as we get connected. Give it a try.

2012 Maumee River Walleye Run – Gearing Up

You have spent the week scouring your possible honey holes to make certain you can get in and out safely after you have limited. Now, it’s time to make certain that you have the appropriate gear, to haul in your limits.

I will point this out right off the git-go, I do not have reels, I have precision casting instruments!…all right, okay, they’re reels. There are many types of reels available on the market today: 1. Spinning 2. Baitcast (low profile & round). 3. Spincast. 4. Levelwind. 5. Line Counter. 6. Fly. 7. Centerpin. These are the ones that I am most familiar with.

The ones that you will probably use most often for the Maumee River Walleye Run are spinning, baitcast, spincast or fly. A few terms that you are going to want to be familiar with when seeking out your own precision casting instruments are: Front drag, Rear drag, Drag pounds, Ball bearings, Gear Ratio, and Line capacity.

Spinning reels are made in a very wide array of sizes. Each manufacturer will use a different method and verbiage for its sizes. Pflueger uses a 20-50 size range for their spinning reels. The letters before and after are usually only to depict the model, for example, the President, Trion, Supreme and Patriarch.

The 20 sizes are going to be the smallest, usually considered micro-light or ultra-light. A 50 size is going to be a very large spool and typically will offer more drag pounds than its smaller counterparts. Shimano’s sizing system is currently 500-8000. Again, the letters before depict model. Letters at the rear, typically, will depict if the reel is front or rear drag. Shimano offers either/or with the Spirex line or the Symetre line. You would be safe with a 30 or 3000 size, depending on which manufacturer you choose.

Ball bearings are a very integral part of what makes a good reel or what makes a great reel. The amount of ball bearings that a manufacturer uses, in the construction of their reel, is going to determine how smooth your reel is going to retrieve, when you are hooked into a fish. It is typical theory that the more bearings a reel has, the smoother it is going to retrieve, or reel in. I have had my hands on hundreds of reels and cannot tell you how absolutely factual this is.

Shimano is one manufacturer, however, that does not follow this thought process. The construction, of most Shimano spinning reels, is superior on many levels, compared to many manufacturers. They use a sealed, treated bearing system, which allows them to utilize fewer bearings, while still providing maximum retrieval smoothness. This sealed and treated system, also aids in making a reel safe to use in salt water conditions.

Shimano is responsible for many amazing reels available on the market today. They offer such a large variety of reels that there is no way that I would be able to list them all and keep your attention…what was I saying?? Seriously though, Shimano offers some of the best values for the money. They offer reels that range in price from $12.99 – $700.00 with each giving its owner a plethora of adjectives to describe its precision.

I am going to talk about a couple of their lower end spinning reels though, because like I said, I am not interested in spending ALL the money to get quality. My absolute favorite is the Shimano Sahara. This reel is a power house. At $79.99, the Sahara gives you the Shimano Line Propulsion Management System. This system is newer technology, which sole purpose is to aid your line in coming off the spool better. The easier your line exits the spool, the further casting distance you will get, and the happier you will be. You will encounter far fewer line twist and tangles.

There are other manufacturers with excellent reel technology, including Pflueger and Abu Garcia. Many big box retailers also offer their “line of reels.” Do not be fooled by their name on the product though, they don’t actually produce their own reels, rods or lures for that matter. They tend to have other manufacturers produce them. General rule of thumb, whoever produces them the least expensive, gets the contract.

The Pflueger manufacturer offers two very affordable reels, which are a huge value for the money. The President as well as the lower end Trion. The Pflueger President will cost around $59.99. With its ten bearings, solid, lightweight graphite frame and variety of spool sizes, a including a micro-light, the Pflueger President has everything you could want from a reel. This is one of the lines that I sold the most of when I was working at Bass Pro. I have also personally used this reel and really enjoyed all of its benefits. The lower end Pflueger Trion, is nothing to turn your nose up at. This line offers you a 7 bearing system as well as a variety of spool sizes. Quite a little power house at its meager $39.99 price tag.

The line capacity of a reel is a guideline, usually printed on the spool, or at the very least on the box or packaging that the reel came in. It refers to the amount of line that the spool can and should hold. Unless the reel is specifically designed for braided, super lines, the capacities given are more often than not, for monofilament lines. We will talk about different lines a bit later on. The amount of line that a spool can hold is important for a couple of reasons. First, there are some fish that “run.” By run, I mean swim away from you very fast! When this happens, line is being taken off of your spool. If you do not have enough line on your spool, this could be a problem. Salmon and Steelhead come to mind for fresh water fish that have a tendency to run.

Another reason to make sure that you have a spool, with enough line capacity, is that you are going to lose a lot of line. The bottom of the river is very rocky with snags, some natural and others created by other fishermen that have lost their rigs. Unless you have a spare spool ready to go; which is honestly something to consider, once your line is gone from your active set up, your options are to either quit fishing for the day or sit on the bank and re-spool. Coming down to the river prepared can make your experience so much more enjoyable.

The larger a reel, the more line it must have to fill it properly. Smaller reels will hold less. In the case of reels, size DOES matter. You would never want to take an ultra light reel out to fish for salmon or other large species. It just won’t perform the way you want it to. The main and most typical failure would be the drag, thus burning out the gears.

A reel’s gear ratio, 7.1:1, for example, determines how many inches of line, per crank you will retrieve. The lower the number, the slower you will retrieve line and the higher the number, the faster you will retrieve line. Spinning reels tend to have a median range of ratio’s available, maxing out right around 6.2:1. Baitcast reels offer the widest variety of ratios available, and range from 4:1 to the fastest at 7.3:1.

The higher gear ratios are called “burners.” Because they retrieve so fast that your lures “burn” through the water. There are many different applications that each different ratio is suited for. However, unless you intend on becoming a professional angler, you will never need to concern yourself too much on what gear ratio your reel is. What I would recommend, as you begin, is to choose one that is a middle of the road speed. This will give you the most versatility. It is not bad to maintain a middle of the road retrieval speed while down at the Maumee River Walleye Run.

A spincast reel is one which has a push button line release. It also fully encloses the line spool. There are very few manufacturers that are using metal gears in these reels anymore. Most are utilizing nylons and plastics. These are not my favorite type of reel and if I could rid the world of them, I would. Well, maybe not the world, because they are designed to be very easy to use. This becomes important when you are taking children out to fish.

This style of reel is absolutely the most simplistic reel designed. You simply push and hold the button with your thumb, bring the rod back above your shoulder and as you start to go forward, release only your thumb from the button. If you are concerned about letting the whole pole go, trust me I have seen it happen, there are rod floats available at most sporting good stores. Spincast reels are also effective for just holding the rod over the side of the boat and dropping your lure down.

The downfall, of the spincast style reel, is with them enclosing the line spool, if you do get a tangle inside there, you have to take the entire reel apart to get to it. If you’re like me, you want as few “loose parts” near the water as possible. Another thing about spincast reels is that they are just not designed to last anymore. My customers were replacing their spincast reels at least every season, if not more often. Like I said before, I am not interested in continuing to invest in something. I want products that are going to last. I want a reel that is designed to do what I need and want it to do. And finally, the drag system on a spincast reel simply falls short. From your microcasts to larger “cat fishing” spincasts, the drag system will be less substantial when comparing to a spinning or baitcasting reel.

Baitcasters are designed to be precision casting reels. Their construction will allow you to cast further, as well as, get dead on accuracy. Unlike its spinning reel counterpart, the line on a Baitcast reel comes straight off of the top of their reel, while the line on a spinning real comes off in coils. Once you become proficient with a baitcast a reel you can cast it a country mile. They are, however, a little more involved to learn. I would personally never discourage someone from trying to learn how to use a baitcast reel. There are just some times when we need all of the distance we can get.

This brings me to line choices. They are many and they all have different fishing applications. The most common line is monofilament. This is a single fiber of plastic. It is the least expensive not only to produce but to purchase as well. Monofilament offers a variety of diameters and tensile strengths. It is also available in a multitude of colors such as, blue, hi vis yellow, lo vis green, white, clear, orange & fluorescent.

There are also braided lines, fused lines, co-polymer and fluorocarbon to name a few. Braided lines and fused lines are designed to offer anglers a heavier test pound with a smaller diameter, thus allowing you to use much lighter weight gear. Braided and fused lines can be quite pricey. The benefits, however, you will quickly find, outnumber the cost. The strength and abrasion resistance these two types of lines offer are unrivaled by their plastic or nylon counterparts. These two types of line have no stretch, as you will find in monofilament, and other co-polymers. This characteristic offers anglers unprecedented sensitivity. These characteristics, when you are fishing down on the Maumee River, can make or break your day.

During the Maumee River Walleye Run, my idea of perfect line combination is 10 lb monofilament with an 8 lb fluorocarbon leader. I’ll get to the specifics of rigs in a soon to come article. I feel like I get the greatest amount of sensitivity and durability with this combination. While Monofilament is a more buoyant line, fluorocarbon is much denser, less visible and will sink. In the raging spring Maumee River current, that extra density can help put and keep you in the strike zone.

I am compelled to share with you, my personal opinion, regarding braids and fused lines during the walleye run. I am not a fan. The strength of the braids and fused lines, some of you guys are using a little over kill with 20 & 30 lb test will make certain that when you get snagged up, you are going to end up leaving that line stuck to a rock on the river bottom. That line that you cut, be it 5 ft or 10 yards, is going to do nothing but create huge snags, for the rest of us. At least with monofilament and fluorocarbon, you have a shot at breaking out of it. Yes, I know that you’re getting more sensitivity with the braids & fused lines, and I understand that you want to fill your freezer. I guess all that I’m asking, is that you remain conscientious of what’s happening when you lose your line.

The last thing that I am going to cover in this article will be rods. There are yet as many different rods as there are reels and line. Each designed with specific fishing applications in mind. One thing to remember about rods, you can always pull a smaller fish in with a heavier duty rod….but pulling in the big ones on a lighter weight rod takes patience.

There are graphite blanks, carbon blanks, fiberglass blanks, boron blanks and variations of these materials galore. Your more common are graphite blanks. These have been the material to use for many years, until carbon started being used. Both offer super light weighted blanks with mind-blowing sensitivity. I joke with some of my clients that some of the rods are sensitive enough that you can feel if the fish has a booger!

The amount of graphite that is in a rod blank will determine its sensitivity and weight. The more graphite that a rod contains; the lighter weight and more sensitive it will be. Be wary however, this also means it will be a whole lot more brittle and definitely not a rod to choose, if you’re the angler that horses fish up and out. A good general amount would be right around 60 million modulus of graphite, which would be equivalent to right around an IM-10 blank (Intermediate Modulus)

Rods come in a variety of lengths as well. You have your small 24″ rods for Ice fishing all the way up to 20′ rods for crappie fishing. Down at the Maumee during the run, I personally use a 7’6″ length rod, but would prefer to step up to an 8’0-8’6″. Why you ask? Casting distance. Since I fish from shore, or wade out from shore, distance is the name of the game. I am not a big fan of heading out to the center of the river with the packs. I think it’s dangerous. The longer rods, offer the casting distance that I need, to get to where the fish are. If you’re one of the anglers out in the boat packs, you’re definitely not going to want a longer rod.

When you are talking about the rods power, Ultra-light, light, medium light, medium, medium heavy, heavy, extra heavy, what you are referring to, is how much pressure it takes for the rod to bend or flex. Different rod powers, are also designed, to handle different lure weights. This becomes very important as you are choosing which species of fish to target. You wouldn’t use an ultra-light powered rod to fish for sharks just as you wouldn’t use an extra heavy powered rod to fish for blue gill.

Rods also have what is known as “action.” The typical actions available are slow, moderate, moderate fast, fast, and extra fast. This is determined by where the rod bends or flexes. Where a rod flexes is going to be determined by the blanks material and its taper. A rod with a faster action is designed to flex closer to the tip and the slower action rods are going to bend more toward the butt or handle of the rod. Without getting too technical and losing you to the information highway, choosing which action of rod is a matter of personal preference. You will know when a rod feels right during the application you are using it for. Typically the rods that I choose and use down on the Maumee for the walleye run are medium power, fast action. They feel good in my hands and feel right bringing in the eyes.

Some of the best rods that I have used are St. Croix products. There are a number of reasons, including technology, price, quality and warranty that I feel make them one of the leading rod manufacturers. They offer an extensive line of products and have rod designs for just about every application imaginable. One of the best things about a St. Croix rod though is, many of them are still made here in the U.S.. That in its self is reason enough to put one in your hands. St. Croix is also very customer service oriented. I have never had a bad encounter with them after I have purchased a product from them. Sometimes that after the sale service, makes the extra few dollars spent, well worth it.

With all of this being mentioned, I will tell you, that you don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars, to catch fish. There are a great many rods the you can still purchase for under $30.00. The most durable of these rods are the Shakespeare Ugly Stik. Yes this is really the name. These rods can definitely take a beating like no other. The only downfall, when comparing them to say, a St. Croix, is they lack that sensitivity.

I often ask clients if they want or need durability or sensitivity. The response definitely varies. There are some anglers that know that they’re rough on their gear and choose durability. Using something such as an Ugly Stik also gives you a little more variety with one rod. What I mean by this is that I could use a much lighter powered Ugly Stick, for something that I would have to use a heavier powered St. Croix for. In terms of species, I could get away with a light powered Ugly Stik fishing for walleye down on the Maumee, where as with a graphite blank rod, I would definitely want a medium or higher power.

Make no mistakes, how you use the rod is just as important, as what power and action you choose. There is no rod immune to snapping in two, or sometimes a few pieces. You can take precautions with your fishing techniques to get the longevity of life from your gear that it deserves. One common mistake that I see being made at the run is hook set. I see so many of you yanking up so hard that if you did have a fish on you probably just ripped its lips off. The misfortune to this behavior, my guess is that 98% of the time, you just set your hook on a rock fish or a snag fish. Both can be fatal to your gear. If you let the rods power and action do most of the work on hook set, you will break a whole lot fewer good rods and have many more successful hook sets.

I think you now have an understanding that you are going to need a reel, line and a rod to head down to the raging Maumee River this spring. In the last article of this series, I will draw this all together for you and give you the tips and techniques that you have been waiting for. I will do my best to make certain you know exactly what gear you need and I will cover casting techniques, color selection, rigs & knots.