Why Is It Good to Have Backup Plans

It’s always good to have a backup plans like plan A through C, sometimes needing a plan D. That is where we are at right now.

After finding out from the auto shop that it would cost $2,500.00 for them to replace the engine with a used one, $3,600.00 to obtain a remanufactured one and installed, both prices are exceeds the value of the car.

Dodge truckSo, we are at plan D as of now. What is plan D. I bought an engine for my truck back in 2014, but due to my CRPS I am unable to install it. For $250.00 for a cherry picker and we only need to chip in half the cost for the picker, $125.00, $70.00 for a towing fee and have Deb’s nephew install it for $195.00. Just to be on the safe side, I am going to say $250.00 for misc items that may be needed.

Crossing my fingers to see if this plan will hold.

Update on Car from an August Post

Most have read the August post, “THE PLAN“, so this will be a fast update.

After having said vehicle towed back and forth, starter and other items replaced by Deb’s nephew to keep costs down, we have just been informed today from the Auto shop that the engine is shot.  Compression on cylinder #2 is gone and they suggested in need of a replacement engine. 😦

Reblogging!

I recently came across a site. I was told by someone, that there are those that charge to reblog, but during my last six months on here, I have not came across one -until today.

I was rather disappointed, not outraged but disappointed, I know some on this platform find ways to generate a revenue which is fine and a damn good idea. But being who I am, the way I am, please keep in mind that I and most other sites will never charge to reblog a post. We do it because we want to. Maybe it fits a theme we are doing for that day. Maybe it is one hell of a post that needed to be shared. Maybe it’s a new blog and needs a little help getting noticed in this vast sea of WordPress Blogs. But when I read $200 dollars for a year, $35 for one reblog. I think there are better ways to generate an income then possibly taking an advantage of someone. This is just how I feel about this. So, if you are one who does this I mean no disrespect -I just disagree with the tactics.

School Dress Code Policies

I wanted to take a break from reblogging for a moment to address a rising issue that we as parents are facing with certain schools.

The feature image is of Stephanie Hughes who attends the Woodford County High School in Kentucky. Her Mother was called to the office to pick her daughter up for  not dressing and adhering to the school’s dress code policy. The young girl’s Mother is Stacie Dunn who was irate and took to social media. That is how I found the article that can be read here: Bad Dress School Policy.

As any one can plaining see the girl is dressed nice and cute for a girl her age and I being a male see nothing wrong with the way she is dressed, but according to the school, her collarbone was revealed. OK!

Last week I believe on Friday night, one of my friends showed me a pic that was sent to her on her mobile phone of one her friends daughters getting sent home for not dressing appropriately. This was in Flandreau, South Dakota. The young teenage girl in the pic, you could not see skin anywhere but her face wearing glasses and very little of her neck line. Now the white sweater that this young girl was wearing had the sleeves extending her hands wearing blue jeans and tennis shoes. Yet she got sent home. Now for the double standard for this school, there are girls that wear those short tank tops, maybe my female audience would know what they are called, but anyway, these other girls have their bellies exposed, with one false move anyone could most likely get a peek at their boobies.

I just don’t understand what is going on with our school systems?

What are your thoughts?

What You May Not Know.

Some may know but some may not know.

DeVry University, network administration, networkWhen I first got my A.S.S degree in Network Systems Administration, I was under a cloud thinking that you had to be bright in order to get your foot in the door with a large corporation, I later found out a secret within the some of the IT industries.

Have you ever found yourself thinking that you knew more then the person waiting on you at your local Best Buy? Maybe the customer service representative “Helping” you on the phone?

Both my friend and I applied at our local Best But, he with his brand new B.S Computer Science degree and I with my Network Systems degree, We were not hired. Later on when I went to the store to purchase a graphics card, I noticed one of their techs from the Geek Squad coming out of a room that was to the left of me, messed up hair, shirt partially tucked in one side in and the other hanging and flapping around with ground in  staines ready to start his day. I texted my friend Dustin, I know why we were not hired. We were dressed to good-their looking for slobs and morons. True story!

When I was studying my butt off with virtual labs using Citrix because it was a safe environment in case of mistake that would not fry real servers, you gain an understanding of how things work along with a set of known rules that must be followed.

It took me a few years after my degree to get a real Tech position, before that I was a customer sales rep selling private student loans and doing testings on upgrades to ensure those upgrades would hold,

When I finally got a position with that shiny title of Tech Support, during the training session, we were told -they can teach us the tech stuff but they can’t teach how to be a good customer service rep. The had every possible document that you could think off.  But, there are always those certain instances where it is not written  and you have to use your logic to solve the problem.

My brother Roy who works for Wells Fargo as a Project Manager in the IT department, told me their techs just google to find an answer, Google the one and all cure all for all your needs. One person that was hired there to create and fix Web pages had to seek help, after my brother did the Web page he turned and released his wrath on the young gal. I think he could have handled it better but that is just my opinion. The question is, she was hired on to create Web pages for the company and maintain them. So how come when it came down to it she did not know what she was doing?

Companies are finding it hard to retain Customer service Representatives. Some companies are offering a $1,500.00 sign on bonuses. Here are other companies offering small to large sign on bonuses.  This is off the track of IT positions but there may be an underlying theme.

 

Ice Cold!

Restaurant empty, Applebee'sAs a treat last night, we decided to go to a local restaurant and enjoy a meal with out having to cook it ourselves. We get there and the young lady informs us it will be a five to six minute wait because the kitchen is slightly backed up. OK, we said. As I took a seat on the waiting bench, I noticed that some of tables and booths were not occupied. Humm! I was thinking to myself, a five minute wait and there is availible seating. I should have known something was wrong, after all this was a Friday night known as one of the busy nights for restaurants anywhere in the states.

We get our booth, the waitress gets us our waters and asks if we would like a beverage. She takes our beverage order. The waitress comes back and proceeds to take our dinner order, We both get the Bourbon Steak with garlic mashed potatoes. How can you go wrong? As, we nurtured our beverage as we waited for our food to arrive I was looking around, and noticed a few more people come in and seated. Not many but a few. Awfully strange for a Friday night.

Our food finally arrives, the steak looks awesome and seeing the sizzle underneath the steaks just made you want to dive right in, the slight aroma of the whiskey finding your nose.Then I noticed the Garlic mashed potatoes, they had this shine to them. I will admit it has been a while since I have been behind the Cold mashed potatoesgrill but that brought some flashback memories yet I could not remember what it meant. The Server asked us to cut into our steaks and we did and they were perfect. Then my better half tasted the garlic mashed potatoes, I heard this kind of yelp, she informs the Server the potatoes are ice cold. The plate is extremely hot to where you have to use a utensil or napkin to move the plate. How can this be? I tasted mine, and the same thing, ice freaking f@@ing cold!

I could not see any reason for this period!. I’ve been there, I know first hand what it’s like to be overwhelmed with customers coming out of the wood works. I get it! Yet, the establishment was virtually empty as it was. As soon as I told the Server that my potatoes were cold as well, I noticed a young couple that were just seated, got up and left. I think the young man heard me. Then, I noticed another couple that were only there for about ten minutes leave too, they were behind us around the corner so it was not because they heard me. As a former professional cook, sous chef there is no reason to send out a plate with ice cold food on it, especially if you know it and just trying to get the orders out as fast as you can and hoping that the customer will not notice, or in hopes of buying you some time. Not the way to do it.

Margarita, Alcohol, tequila In the end we did get fresh Garlic mashed potatoes that were hot with the apologies of the attending Manger, we even got a five dollar coupon for the next time we go there, I have reservations though.

Well atleast, we had our Margaritas to comfort us. 🙂

Roadblocks

While I am waiting to obtain some fresh tomatoes from a garden, so that I can make my homemade tomato sauce and capture photos for a post I wish to do, I thought I would talk about road blocks.

I was going to write a different post, but when I was recently delayed by a train, I had some time to kill, like using the steering wheel as bongos, murmur to myself, scratch my head, making horse sounds from waiting and waiting.

Roadblocks appear in different configurations affecting, preventing aspects of goals or even daily tasks. Roadblocks hinder finding information on ancestors; repress normal activities from an ailment or disability-roadblocks may be viewed as a challenge.

ToysFacing roadblocks may not be easy, fun or speedy, I usually look for an alternate path and if that path is a forest filled with thick brush, then I gather my rope and machete.

Eating at Restaurants VS Eating at Home

Why I prefer to cook and eat food at home. One because I enjoy it and I like to recreate the food from the past. But also because it is safer. As I have posted before, I used to be in the restaurant industry for twelve to fifteen years, I forget which these days. But, I always paid attention to the health code violations because I did not like the BOSS ripping me a new one; back when I was still green. Later on I got to know the inspectors, asked them questions while gaining their respect.

I had some time today and decided to look at the scores of some of the places I have ate at. I was disappointed to see some of the scores in the high eighties or worse! Let me give some examples. I will not mention the name of the restaurant but I will provide the link. Now this one place is a recent eatery with in the last year, I read the report and wanted to vomit.

Inspection Date: 5/11/2015
Total Score:83
Critical Violations
5 points: EMPLOYEE HYGIENE
Kitchen employee was observed touching body parts and continuing to work without washing hands. (blew nose in kitchen then back to work without washing hands)
5 points: FOOD DISPLAY SERVICE AND TRANSPORT TEMP
Cheese and rice noted found on hot holding unit in front service area at 130 degrees fahrenheit must be maintained at 140 degrees fahrenheit or above.
3 points: HANDWASHING LAVATORIES AND SUPPLIES
The hand washing lavoratory noted with no hot water provided. Disconinue storing equipment in front of sink musrt be easily accessible for dish washers. Disposable towels needed in dispenser. Handsink must be utilzed in dishwashing room must wash hands between handling dirty and clean.

Another place got docked five point for cross contamination of food. “Raw meat noted being stored above food not to be further cooked”  Inspection Date: 6/3/2015  Total Score:88. Here is the kicker, this is one of the upskill pricey establishments located in the heart of what we call downtown.

I find it hard to understand, it is not that hard to wash your hands, it is not hard to separate food items with labels housing the date on it.

Now here is one for a Sushi establishment.

nspection Date: 6/25/2015
Total Score:61
Critical Violations
5 points: EMPLOYEE HYGIENE
Prep cook was observed switching between working with beef seafood and other raw products and working with ready-to-eat foods without washing hands. The HACCP plan submitted by Sushi Masa is not being followed as written. Review your approved plan and follow it.
5 points: CROSS CONTAMINATION
Raw fish and seafood noted being stored above food not to be further cooked. Store avocados and cucumbers above potentially hazardous food items in basement cooler.
5 points: FOOD DISPLAY SERVICE AND TRANSPORT TEMP
Eggs noted not being held at 41 degrees fahrenheit or below.
4 points: COLD AND HOT STORAGE EQUIPMENT
Coolers in the facility being used for cold holding temp of 41 degrees F was not functioning adequately.
4 points: SANITIZATION OF EQUIP. AND UTENSILS
An inadequate amount of chlorine sanitizer was noted in the final rinse of the dish machine.
3 points: INSECT RODENT ANIMAL CONTROL
Insects noted infesting the food service basement storage and processing areas.

That one is a “Here’s your sign” award.

Another bone I have, is when people use the facilities and don’t bother to wash their hands. Like the employee above that blew their nose and proceeded to handle food without washing his/her hands. Now image a prep cook, waiter or waitress not washing their hands after using the facilities and brings you your food while you notice their thumb is touching one of the items on the plate.

Here is the link: http://webapps.siouxfalls.org/inspections/restaurants.aspx

More food Yum! Yummm!

We get to a certain age in life, and we reflect on the rising cost of food products among other things. Who would have thought that what was once inexpensive to make is no longer the case. Eggs, for the most part have risen due to Avian flu. Less chickens = less eggs. MinnionsI think the image to the left makes a fair statement as to how some of us feel with the rising cost of food products as well as the fuel jumping up which also contributes to the rise in food products. The consumer is taking a licking.

Ok, I am done with my rant.

I thought I would share a recent meal that I cooked the other night. Most everyone, has their own spin on recreating a dish whether it be a recipe handed down or one that we found via the Internet. The most common meal of the day for this particular recipe would be breakfast. But who says you can’t have breakfast for dinner. Today I will show you my spin on the Potato and egg burrito.

Let’s get started!

Ingredients:

Potatoes, I used four of them cut into bite size

Eggs, I used three large grade A

Salt

Black Pepper

Garlic Salt

Onion Salt, my better half does not like onions

Cilantro

Red Bell pepper (Use an amount you want to use)

Green Bell Pepper (Use an amount you want to use)

First, I start by putting Vegetable oil in a large frying pan, about two caps full maybe three. To be honest with you, I never measure, I judge it by eye. Let the pan heat up on medium heat if using an electric stove. Once the pan is heated, add the potatoes and be careful not to get splashed by the oil. Then add a pinch or two of salt and the same amount of black pepper. Next, add about two to three shakes evenly of the garlic salt, now the onion salt-about two shakes. Place a lid over the pan and let it cook for about three to five minutes. Remove lid and use a spatula to turn the potatoes over. When you remove the lid you should get the aroma of the spices hitting your nose. What a delight!

Once the potatoes are turned over, add the bell peppers. Ok, now we want the bells to caramelize but not burnt. Place the lid back on for about two to three minutes and then remove the lid. Turn the potatoes over. Once you see that the potatoes are browning and the bells starting to caramelize is when I added the cilantro. I then placed the lid for about two to three minutes. Remove the lid. At this time I added the eggs. Now, about the eggs. I know some will grab a bowl and scramble the eggs then proceed to add that to the potatoes. I don’t and never have or will when it comes to this recipe. You may do so if you wish, but you’d be robbing yourself of the flavor that you get by doing it this way.

Now for the photos:

potatoes

Red bell pepers, green bell peppers

Fry potatoes

Carmelize

Almost done

large grade eggs

Egg done

Add chesse

The cheese is optional. Fold in a tortilla and enjoy!

If any one found this interesting or just plain liked it, then please give me a like or leave me a comment.

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