Tuesday, August 31, 2010


I am not powerless over myself, and the way I act and react. (One Day At A Time in Al-Anon, 25 July)


Yesterday I continued to work on my Box project. I invited more people to use the account. I uploaded at least eight more documents, to add another 134 pages to what was already there. I moved seven individual folders into the Marshall-Wetzel-WV folder. Access can be granted to a single low-level folder or to a parent folder and all the child folders.This will give me more control over how I grant access. I ran into a problem when I wanted to send a invitation to participate. There are several ways to do this and one of them didn't work. After several attempts I was able to find a way that worked. I think I noticed what caused the problem with the way that didn't work.

So far no one, who accepted an invitation, has reported any problems accessing the files. I can see them reviewing and downloading the files. A reviewed document doesn't stay on the reviewer's computer.

Mr. Dickie
31/Aug/2010 7:59

Monday, August 30, 2010

Weekend Report

It is difficult to overcome the habit of setting standards for our ... [loved ones], and expecting them to be followed. (One Day At A Time In Al-Anon, 12 August)


This weekend I enjoyed phone calls with: classmate Thad, cousin Fran and genealogy friend Doug. The calls reminded me that it takes some effort to stay in touch.

I posted an article I wrote about Box.Net on my Google genealogy blog. I granted access to my genealogy reports to several friends who hold similar interests. I also posted the URL for the genealogy site created by Doug.

I watched all, or part, of many of the games in the Little League World Series. Japan beat Hawaii in the final yesterday.

Mr. Dickie
30/Aug/2010 7:59

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Close Call

Thank you for not talking about recession, inflation, the weather or your health. (Daily Guideposts - 1990, 12 August)


Yesterday we went to Schrom Park for a fifty-minute walk. We walked four laps. We hadn't been there for many weeks. We were shocked to see how many trees came down in recent storms.

On the way home from our walk we came very close to being involved in a head-on accident. We were on Good Luck Road and we had some. As we neared an intersection a car coming towards us from the opposite direction crossed the center line and drove directly towards us on our side of the road. As he crossed the center line he was about two hundred yards away from us. I honked and started to slow our minivan. When a crash seemed certain I began to turn right onto the cross street and got our car stopped. As this fool passed in front of us I realized that he had control of his car. What he was doing was turning, at a high rate of speed, onto the same side street where I'd stopped. What he intended to do, by driving on the the wrong side of the street for nearly half a block was, cut me off. One of the reasons we don't often drive to this park is because I'm always saying, "There is too great a risk that some fool is going to try to kill us during the trip." We came very close yesterday.

It's time to admit that my laser printer is out of ink. Shaking the ink cartridge doesn't provide enough ink on the left side of the page. Today's my day to install another ink cartridge.

I converted a three-page HTML document into a PDF file. I used my HTML editor to strip out the HTML codes. Then I used Google Docs to reformat the document, add page numbers and generate the PDF file. Then I uploaded the document to my Box account where I can share it with other folks working on genealogy.

Mr. Dickie
29/Aug/2010 8:00

Saturday, August 28, 2010

My Bad

"The horror of that moment," the King said, "I shall never, never forget."
"You will, though," said the Queen, if you don't make a memorandum of it."
(Lewis Carroll - Through the Looking Glass)


I found the Baker folder I lost in Box.Net. I have no idea what happened. Somehow I moved the folder and its three files into the Conger folder. I suppose it was just one of my many "senior moments."

Yesterday I called the county trying to find out if a bulk trash pick-up was scheduled for the eight mattresses, television and couch sitting in front of one of the houses where too many people are living. I found out that a pick-up was scheduled. They wouldn't tell me when. Afterwards I walked across the street to tell Fred that they were going to make the pick-up. He laughed and said, "They already came." Funny! Of course they didn't stop to pick up the junk at the house on the other side of the street. That's going to sit there for a while because that house is not occupied. We are involved in a constant struggle trying to keep the development from turning into a dump.

Facebook installed something that will tell others where you are located. They didn't announce the change and they set the switch to "opt in" rather than "opt out." The arrogance of the guy in charge of Facebook is nothing short of amazing. I guess he can do whatever he wants since he doesn't charge for the service. I think I found the place to turn it off. Since I don't use Facebook from a mobile device it probably doesn't make any difference to me. It's just the principle of the thing.

Mr. Dickie
28/Aug/2010 8:33

Friday, August 27, 2010

Dumbfound and Dismayed

...try to stop making unreasonable demands upon those you love. (As Bill Sees It, p. 230)


Yesterday I was working on my Box.Net account. I made notes about how I structured the folders in my file space and about what files I posted. I also double checked to see if I had recorded the number of the pages in the comment I wrote for each file. The "Baker" folder had three files in it and one of them didn't have the number of pages listed. I fixed the problem and saved the comment. Then, much to my dismay, I noticed that the entire folder, with all three files, had disappeared. I didn't see what happened. I didn't have any idea what went wrong. Whatever happened it was too easy. The Box application didn't ask me to confirmed that I wanted to delete a file or folder. Now I'm not certain I can trust the application. I'm dumbfounded and dismayed.

I borrowed Melva's little blue radio with the cassette tape player. I want an easy way to listen to the music on some of my cassette tapes. Today I'm listening to a tape I made of Tom Rush - New Year and David Mallett - David Mallett.

I checked last night to see if the county bulk trash pick-up came to get all of the mattresses and other furniture sitting at the curb in front of one of the problem houses in the development. No luck. To make matters worse there is a smaller pile of bulk trash in front of a vacant house in the neighborhood. As soon as one load is removed another shows up in front of another house. I suppose the county is overwhelmed trying to stay on top of the situation.

Mr. Dickie
27/Aug/2010 7:48

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Living in the Fast Lane

Storing up grievances is more than a waste of time; it 's a waste of life that could be lived to greater satisfaction. (One Day At A Time In Al-Anon, 18 August)


After supper I went for a walk in the neighborhood. I was the only one outside. This isn't unusual. Most of the time only a few children and I are outside.

I wrote about how to create friend "lists" on Facebook. They serve two purposes. You can use them to filter which postings display on the screen and you can use them to send a "group" mailing to only certain friends.

Today we are hopeful that a huge pile of mattresses (about ten of them), a couch, television and other items will be picked up by the county bulk trash truck from in front of one of the "flop houses" that have sprung up in "the hood." On the driveway, in front of the carport, there is one abandoned minivan and alongside of the house is a transmission. Under the carport is another untagged car which supposedly belongs to someone living in the basement. The county is slow to react to this situations and they soon get out of hand.

Are you coming to Washington, DC for the Glenn Beck event this weekend? Who does this guy think he is?

Mr. Dickie
26/Aug/2010 8:18

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Rough Day

...today's struggles will bring me the strength to face tomorrow. (Rick Hamlin, Daily Guideposts - 1986, 12 August)


I had a rough day yesterday. I was outside visiting with a neighbor. It was overcast and I was wearing sunglasses. It never occurred to me that there was a chance of getting a migraine headache. Anyway, something went wrong and I realized while I was still talking to the neighbor that I was going to have a headache. As soon as I got back to the house I took two Excedrin Migraine tablets and applied a bag of ice to my forehead. I laid in bed for five hours with my eyes closed listening to music on my headset. After the first hour everything was under control and I was reasonably comfortable.

Because I had to be still for five hours it was a good opportunity to listen to some of my music. I selected four CDs.
  • Alicia de Larrocha - Spanish Fireworks
  • Gray Morris _ Why Lady Why
  • John Cowan - Always Take Me Back
  • Berline, Crary and Hickman - Chambergrass

I particularly like The Wind Beneath My Wings on the Gary Morris album and In My Father's Field on the John Cowan album. I shouldn't wait for another headache before I listen to more of my albums.

Mr. Dickie
25/Aug/2010 10:32

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

St. Cyprian

In the third century, St. Cyprian wrote to a friend named Donatus:

This seems a cheerful world, Donatus, when I view it from this fair garden. ... But if I climbed some great mountain and looked out ... you know very well what I would see; brigands on the high road, pirates on the seas, in the amphitheaters men murdered to please the applauding crowds. ...

Yet in the midst of it, I have found a quiet and holy people. ... They are despised and persecuted, but they care not. They have overcome the world. These people, Donatus, are Christians. ... (Max Lucado, Grace For the Moment, 24 August)
24/Aug/2010 10:50

Monday, August 23, 2010

Mind Control

Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable. (Philippians 4:8, The One Year Mini For Men, 31 July)
23/Aug/2010 7:42

Sunday, August 22, 2010

West Virginia Friends

Wisdom is the God-given ability to see life with rare objectivity and to handle life with rare stability. (Charles R. Swindoll, Wisdom For The Way, p. 207)


Melva and I went to Union Station to eat supper with Vernon Anderson our friend from West Virginia. Vernon and I spent several years working on Yoho genealogy together. He reminded me that we never talked on the phone during the course of our project. Everything was done with Email and attachments. This time, to coordinate our get-together we used our cellphones. When it was time for Vernon to return to the bus we walked with him to the bus garage. He introduced us to Joe Henthorn and his wife. I believe this was the first time I ever met a Henthorn from the Ohio River valley face to face. If you are wondering if we are related, we aren't, at least not in this country.

I thought of another thing to learn about. I discovered there are programs that can convert webpages to PDF files. If that works it would come in handy. I could use it to salvage my HTML pages from the genealogy website I had on AOL for many years.

Mr. Dickie
22/Aug/2010 7:42

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Daily Practice

Make it a daily practice to review your character.
(Twenty-Four Hours A Day, 13 Aug)
21/Aug/2010 11:59


I'm impressed with the functionality of Box.Net. I think it offers a good way to share some of my genealogy reports. I have about fifty reports already prepared. It's just a matter of creating appropriate folders and uploading. The drag and drop upload feature worked. I was somewhat surprised because sometimes things don't work on my old computer.

This morning we went to the big flea market at the nearby Catholic church. It was so hot I was sweating while standing still. I was glad I wasn't one of the vendors. I didn't find anything to buy. Melva bought a dozen movies on tape for $3.00. She is ready for winter.

Mr Dickie
21/Aug/2010 12:05

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Grass Is Greener

Have patience for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace, God is awake. (Victor Hugo in Daily Guideposts - 1990, 30 July)


I'm learning more about the Box.Net application. They give each user 1GB of free storage. I signed up many months ago and hosted two PDF files for the Wichita Class of '57. I think this application has potential for genealogy sharing because I can control who has access.

Last night, just before it got dark, I trimmed the edges of the yard and mowed most of the front yard. Because of the recent rainfall the grass got too tall before I could mow it. It got ahead of me. Even with a self-propelled lawn mower it was physically stressful. It's time to admit that I need to hire help.

I discovered a Zip disk that I can't read. That's upsetting. There is no backup of the backup. As with lots of things concerning computers and printers I just have to accept what happens. It's really not a very good way to store anything you really want to keep.

Mr. Dickie
20/Aug/2010 7:38

Thursday, August 19, 2010

War in Iraq Over?

Oh God, let this horrible war quickly come to an end that we may all return home and engage in the only work that is worthwhile -- and that is the salvation of men. (Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson in A Rainbow of Hope by Billy Janice Hughey, p. 257)


Last night, quietly and with little fanfare, the war in Iraq supposedly came to an end when the last of the combat units drove into Kuwait. Over four thousand of our citizens died in this fiasco. Around fifty thousand support troops remain which means our leaders declared the war over before it is over, just like the previous president did so many months ago. That said, I congratulate our current president and his administration on the progress that's been made. If the soldiers remaining in Iraq are lucky the people of Iraq will have the strength and determination to assume responsibility for their own destiny.

Mr. Dickie
19/Aug/2010 10:55

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Online File Storage

Never promise more than you can deliver.
(Toni Sortor and Pamela McQuade, The Word on Life, 31 July)


Heavy rain with local flooding was predicted for the early morning hours. I woke up at 7:00 a.m. to the sound of the rain falling. Some of the spots that typically flood we already causing problems. West of us more trees fell bringing down the power lines again. At the power company hearing yesterday they admitted that PEPCO has one of the worst records for power outages in the country. I think they admitted that they have been cutting costs by failing to trim the trees near the power lines. Now we are all paying the price.

I'm doing some review of online file storage options. I discovered that some options won't work on this computer because the operating system, Windows 2000, isn't supported. Months ago I tried out Mozy on the laptop that stopped working. It appears they closed my trial account. In February 2007 I signed up for 1GB of free storage on Box.Net. That account was still active. That's where I host two PDF files for the Wichita - East High Class of '57 group. Box.Net works well with Facebook. It's also easy to share the address of a file with friends. I uploaded a Stauffer / Cooley PDF and then sent the link to my friend, Vickie, and myself to test. You can purchase 10GB for $10.00 and 15GB for $15.00 a month. I'm worried about this computer failing.

Mr. Dickie
18/Aug/2010 7:49

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Worry me, worry you,
What good will worry do?
It will put you in a stew,
But never help you make soup.
(Mr. Dickie, 20 Jun 2010)


Last night I had trouble shutting down the computer. I finally just had to turn off the power. I suppose it has something to do with the fact that, on a whim, I decided to install the Google Desktop. This is not a good sign. My past experience tells me that this kind of incident is a warning of grief to come.

Last night I read the Wikipedia piece about Phillip Anshutz one of my classmates from the Wichita High School - East Class of '57. The article claims that he is one of the richest men in the world. He owns many businesses and made his first big money when a huge oil reserve was discovered beneath property he purchased. If you attend movies at Regal Theaters you patronize one of his businesses.

Mr. Dickie
17/Aug/2010 6:18

Monday, August 16, 2010


Evil is a stubborn reality.
(His Miracles, p. 214)
16/Aug/2010 8:58

Sunday, August 15, 2010


Don't be humble. You're not that great.
(Golda Meir)


The grass turned completely brown once this year. It looked like the drought killed it. Now it's fully recovered, showing luscious bright green growth. For the second time I'm going to have a hard time mowing because it is so tall and thick. In all of the years we have lived here I don't remember it ever looking better. I'm my own lawn service, by the way.

Last night on the spur of the moment I installed the Google Desktop on my old computer. I think I installed it once before on a laptop. It took several hours for the software to index everything. I'm curious to discover whether it will be something I find useful.

I devised a new way to add people's names to the "Notes" in the GEDCOM file I am editing. I save four "tags" on the clipboard that I can insert in front of the current note. This method eliminates frequent use of the "shift" key.

There are now 41 members of the Wichita Class of '57 group on Facebook. Unfortunately no one is posting to the group. Perhaps interest in the group has run its course.

Mr. Dickie
15/Aug/2010 7:47

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Home Improvement

A spirit of gratitude and praise change the way you look at life. (The One-Year Mini For Men, 28 July)


Yesterday it was cool enough to get in a 45-minute walk in the neighborhood. I stopped twice to visit with neighbors. There was a huge orange 'clean-up" citation on the front door of the rental house where all of the mattresses and other furniture sits at the curb.

We were very surprised to discover that the green chain-link fence, at the house on the corner and across the street, had been removed during the day. Rick also trimmed dead branches from the three trees in the front yard. After thirty-two years this is a big change and very welcome improvement. We remain hopeful that the rusty chain-link eye-sore directly across from us will one day disappear as well.

Mr. Dickie
14/Aug/2010 8:04

Friday, August 13, 2010

Passing Storms

A person who can't see the difference between good and bad is a corrupt person. (Toni Sortor and Pamela McQuade, The Word On Life, 4 May) 13/Aug/2010 7:13


The storm that passed through yesterday morning knocked out our power for seven hours. We were lucky. Montgomery County to our west took the brunt of the storm again. Many huge trees, three or four feet in diameter, came down knocking out power over a wide area and damaging apartments and homes. This morning some traffic lights in that county are still out. In many areas the power companies will be hard pressed to restore power by the end of the day. Another storm appear later in the day. This one just dropped a light rain at our house.

Mr. Dickie
13/Aug/2010 7:19

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Trials Ahead

If we fail to perfect and enlarge our spiritual life through work and self-sacrifice for others, we cannot survive the certain trials and low spots ahead. (After, As Bill Sees It, p. 188)
12 August 2010

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Beginning to See

Finally, we begin to see that all people, including ourselves, are to some extent emotionally ill as well as frequently wrong. (As Bill Sees It, p. 203) 11/Aug/2010 8:39


Listening to the Patty Loveless album - Sleepless Nights this morning.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Good Advice

Discard the unsightly. Value the good. Clean the dirty. Tend the true. Bring in the fresh. Make room for a guest. (Evelyn Bence, Daily Guideposts - 2008, 25 July) 10/Aug/2010 7:31

Monday, August 9, 2010

Desire of Knowing

Leave off that excessive desire of knowing; therein is found much distraction. There are many things the knowledge of which is of little or no profit to the soul. (Thomas a' Kempis, in One Day At A Time In Al-Anon, 20 July) 9/Aug/2010 8:08

Sunday, August 8, 2010


Not all people are lovable, but when we find someone difficult for us to love, it is often because they remind us of something within ourselves that we don't like. (Betty J. Eadie, Embraced By The Light, 6 July)


Melva and I visited with Cyndi at her apartment in Bethesda on Saturday afternoon. For the first time we saw the replacement for her over-sized couch and chair that she sold before they built an a/c machinery cabinet near the door into her apartment. She also added a futon. Now two people can take a nap while watching the Redskins. We are pleased that she was able to put her apartment back in order.

The awful murder in Prince George's county, Maryland that you may have heard about on national television news happened at a rented house around five to ten minutes drive from our house. I didn't realize this until I looked at a little map in the paper this morning. As a matter of fact yesterday we drove on Auburn Avenue and passed the corner into the neighborhood. Two women and two small children were shot by a forty-three year old man and an eighteen year old woman from Texas over some kind of marijuana drug deal. There was no running water in the house and the house was full of trash and worse. Investigators wore hazmat gear. The two suspects are in custody. There is probably much more to this story than I'm relating here.

Life goes on, except for six people and their families.


Mr. Dickie
8/Aug/2010 9:08

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Stopped by Technology

Be expectant. Constantly expect better things. (Twenty Four Hours A Day, 13 July) 7/Aug/2010 8:57


The county community college changed the enrollment procedure. They no longer enroll at the Senior Center and they took down the phone system. This leaves: 1) mail--in, 2) trip to the campus, 3) the Online OWL system. I can't even get signed on to the OWL system because I can't make the registration process work. At this point I've given up. I'm resigned to going to the campus on Monday. This time I am going to try to find someone who can help me make the OWL system work. It drives me nuts when the "new" way doesn't seem to be the "better" way.

Mr. Dickie
7/Aug/2010 9:32

Friday, August 6, 2010

Still Haunted by Richard M. Nixon

It's the debts of honor and respect that last a lifetime and require real work to pay off. (Toni Sortor and Pamela McQuade, The Word On Life, 19 July)


I attend the twice-monthly meeting of the Computer Club yesterday. I arrived a little early because I wanted to take a look at the PDF minutes of the last meeting on the public computers. I wasn't able to use the hot-links on my home computer. I didn't have any problems with the Senior Center computer. Apparently my older version of Adobe Reader doesn't work well with the PDF I created using Google Docs.

Eric, a club member, give a very nice demonstration and talk about Video Spin, the free video editor, from Pinnacle. The version they sell is called, Video Studio.

After the meeting I got back on the hallway computer. I copied 343 photos from my camera onto a CD that I brought with me. I'm thinking about clearing the photos from the camera card.

As club member Dennis and I walked to the parking lot it began to rain. The storm got worse as I got closer to home. Later, while watching the news I learned that the winds were severe in some areas, particularly Arlington, VA and Oxen Hill, MD. Many trees and power poles came down. There were widespread power outages again

In the evening I watched part of the Rachel Maddow program. She gave an outstanding account of how Richard Nixon and his henchmen let an Air Force General's reputation be ruined in the early 1970's. Nixon had secretly ordered the bombing of North Vietnam. There was a public outcry about the bombing. The Nixon administration needed a scapegoat. Melvin Laird fired and demoted the general, blaming him for acting without proper authority. Rachel Maddow played audio clips of many conversations, over a period of many weeks, between Nixon and his "crew" where the president lamented what was happening to the General. Of course, he never once mentioned directly that it was his fault or that he held the power to stop it simply by calling a news conference to tell the truth that he had given the order for the bombing. When listening to the tapes of Nixon and Johnson it is interesting to note how vague the presidents and their advisers are when they speak to each other. Often they don't speak in sentences. If you examine a phrase or sentence by itself you often must ask yourself, "What is he saying?" One would hope that the men and women working in such high places would be capable of speaking in ways that leave little doubt as to their meaning. If you think we aren't in trouble, just listen, observe and read.

Mr. Dickie
6/Aug/2010 8:19

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Status Quo

If ninety percent of doctors don't believe in the mind-body connection, how do they wiggle their toes? (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying On The Path, p,. 177)


I'm busy trying to maintain the status quo. Today I'm considering attending the Computer Club meeting this afternoon. Very hot weather, with possible storms, is expected later in the day. No need to look at the calendar to determine that it is August.

This morning I caught up on two days of daily reading before I ate breakfast. When I most need to take time for some daily quiet time and reading is when it is most difficult to discipline myself to do it.

Mr. Dickie
5/Aug/2010 8:22

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Metro News

The state of your life is nothing more than a reflection of your state of mind. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying On The Path, p. 185)

Neurotics are looking for problems. They want things to get worse. They want to be right. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying On The Path, p. 178)


The Metro subway system is trying to raise fares this week. They didn't mention that they were also changing the computer system that reads the plastic fare cards. The old system worked well. All it took to open the fare gate was a quick swipe of the card over the spot that reads the card. Yesterday there were problems at a couple of the stations. Some people had to take their cards out of the protective plastic covers they were using. Others had to lay the card down on top of the circular spot that reads the cards and then pick up the card after the gate opened. Some fare gates wouldn't read the cards at all. I'll bet management has already written the check to the contractor that installed the new system. Murphy's Law Rules!

Mr. Dickie
4/Aug/2010 8:47

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Higher Power

It is not in our power to control the actions, attitudes or disease of another human being. (Anonymous - Ohio, As We Understood, p. 244) 3/Aug/2010 12:42

Monday, August 2, 2010


Detachment is one of life's great lessons for those on the path of enlightenment. (Dr. Wayne Dyer, Staying On The Path, p. 175)


Yesterday I backed up a copy of the RootsMagic Conger file on my hard drive and a copy of the GEDCOM that created the RootsMagic file to a Zip disk. I'm still finding "notes" that need the word wrap edits. One way to spot them is to create a modified register report and then visually examine the report. I'm now into the second month of my GEDCOM edit project. I'm hopeful that I will be able to sustain my interest in the project until it's complete. At this point I could share information if someone makes a request.

Mr. Dickie

Sunday, August 1, 2010


Finding and keeping good friends is hard work. (Toni Sortor and Pamela McQuade, The Word On Life, 17 Jul)


I didn't post anything to my blogs yesterday. We left the house early and went to breakfast at Friendly's in Crofton. Afterwards we drove around Bowie looking for garage and yard sales. We saw a few signs but never spotted any good sales. During the day Melva worked on a house plant that had grown to touch the eight foot ceiling in the dining room. She's trying to make two plants, one from the root and one from the top.

I continued to work on my Conger GEDCOM edit project. I started the project on the first day of July. I think I have fixed the word wrap problem in most of the notes. At least I'm not finding many lines that still need to be modified. Most of the edits to the county names are also done. Now I'm working on adding people's names to the second line of their notes. This change improves the readability of the notes in reports.

Mr. Dickie
1/Aug/2010 8:54