I’m a BzzAgent – Smarterer

My good friend Jennifer Lowe told me about an opportunity to get cool stuff and write about them.  It is called BzzAgent pronounced BUZZagent, as in buzz about products.

Well, I have received my first campaign and it is about Smarterer.  What is Smarterer you ask?  On their website they say:

We created Smarterer to provide people a simple, fun, and authentic way to show what they know. Smarterer is a platform designed to score individuals on any and every digital, social, and technical skill under the sun. Using crowdsourced test design and a scoring mechanism similar to the one developed to rank chess masters, in just 10 questions and 60 seconds we can give you a valid score.

I have taken the Facebook, Twitter and WordPress ones and wow they are hard.  Since this is my first campaign I will not lie I was disappointed that I got something that is online and not some awesome coffee or a Kindle.  But the more I looked at Smarterer I got addicted trying to get all the questions correct and I see how it would be good for someone who is going into an interview.  I have applied  to jobs before and told the interviewer that I know Excel very well, which after talking to him I did not.  But Smarterer lets you test your knowledge and then you will know if you know it or not.

Do you want to be a BzzAgent?  Click here and let them know, it is FREE.

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Designer Frames; Revolutionary Price Point

All my life I have worn eyeglasses and I know what it is like to purchase new ones.  You are in the optometrist’s office walking around picking up frames, trying them on, look at the price and them put them back.  It is insane how much we get charged to get some frames and then we have to talk about the lenses.  What material, should it have a special film on it to prevent scratches, oh and what about when people take your pictures or you are driving at night and your classes have this sheen to them; we need anti glare on them.  Even if you have insurance, you may be coming out of the office owing about $100, without insurance you will be spending twice that.

When I was younger we could not afford glasses, but thank God we had the Lion’s Club to help us out.  As you can see in the picture below, the free frames were not all that nice, but the price point was.

What if I tell you that you can get great fashionable glasses for CHEAP.  Not only are they cheap, but the company that you purchase them from will donate a pair of glasses to someone in need.  Look right above this paragraph, that kid would not of had glasses if it was not for someone helping him out.

So, who is this great company?  Their name is Warby Paker!  The best part about this company is that, yes you get the frames for $95, BUT you get the prescribed lenses as well.  That is FRAME and LENS for one low price of $95.  Am I getting your attention here?  Not only are they throwing in lenses, but the lenses have anti-scratch AND anti-glare on them, FOR FREE, NO MORE ADDED COST!

What about insurance you say?  Well, they are not up and running on taking insurance yet, but once you pay for your glasses they will send you an itemized receipt, upon request.  With this receipt you can have your insurance reimburse you for “nonparticipating provider”.

Let’s take my Humana VCP insurance for example.  With this “nonparticipating provider” I will get reimbursed $40 for frames and $25 dollars on lenses.  If my math is correct that comes to be $65 dollars.  $95 minus $65 will make me pay $30 after it is all done with.

I am supper excited to get a great pair of glasses for a great price and help someone get a free pair of glasses out of it like the little boy above did.

OH WAIT!  I almost forgot to tell you about the Home Try On Program.  You can choose FIVE pair of glasses to be mailed to you so you can try them on and have your family and friends tell you what they think.  Once your FIVE days are up you mail them back.  What about postage?  FREE – both ways.

I have requested my five and I will let you know which ones I tried and which one I will buy.  Until then, thanks for reading a dugs life.

Sexual Assault

I enjoy browsing cnn.com to catch up on the news in the world.  Today when I viewed the site there was a picture of Joe Pa’s casket, which was a nice wooden one with a great white rose spray; I digress.  What was interesting is the fact that Joe Pa left amongst a scandal of sexual abuse by one of his coaches.  People have argued whether he did the right thing or not.  This post will not be an argument about how he handled the allegations, in fact it is not about Jo Pa.

John Chadima was the senior associate athletic director at UW-Madison.  Mr. Chadima had a party in a hotel room that involved alcohol, employees and a few minors.  When everyone was leaving Mr. Chadima asked one of the guys who worked for him to stay.  He then undid the guys belt and stuck his hand down his pants.  The guy, John Doe, slapped his hand away.  Mr. Chadima reported that he would fire the student as Mr. Doe ran out of the room.  The police were called and later Mr. Chadima resigned at UW-Madison.

What made me think about this article was the Law and Order episode I just watched called “Personal Fouls”.  It is about a coach who helps kids through basketball, however while doing that he is sexually assaulting some of them.

One of my teachers showed me a website that gives all the stats about Sexual Assault, Rape, Abuse, And Incest National Network  (RAINN).  According to RAINN 80% of all people who are sexually abused are under the age of 30.  In fact they say that every two minutes someone is sexually abused in the US.

It is my hope that we as a national would help teach our children and Universities that it is ok to talk about this difficult topic.  Why, you ask?  Because 60% of sexual assault cases are never reported, SIXTY PERCENT!  The stigma that society has given to these victims is not a good one.  I have a friend who is afraid to tell people that he was sexually abused in fear that people would look differently at him.  Once he had someone say that he would abuse someone because that is what abused children do, they grow up to be an abuser.  FALSE, the statistic that person was looking at was how many of the abusers were abused.  What about all the people who have been abused that have not abused.  Please check out the RAINN website and get familiar with the stats.

Do you know anyone who has been abused?  Were you yourself abused?  How can we take what is going on in the news about these sexual assaults and teach out young people about them?

Parenting vs. Dog Training

It is difficult being a Parent, especially since your child does not come with a manual.

Thankfully we have our parents, family, friends and our church to fall back on.  Right now I am attending a Sunday morning class for dads and dads to be.  We are going through a book called Better Dads, Stronger Sons by Rick Johnson.  He is a great writer and since I do not have a son, I will be starting his That’s my Girl: How a Father’s Love Protects and Empowers His Daughter.

Today our teacher was going over Chapter Seven, Discipline.  This is what I need to know about, how do you get your child to do what you ask and how do you teach them that if they do something they may get hurt doing it?  Well, we did not get through the whole lesson, so we will pick up where we left it next week.

One thing we did talk about, that I thought was really cool, was how so similar training a dog is to parenting your child.  An interesting fact about me I am a former dog trainer for PetSmart.  I went to training for two weeks, read some books, taught some classes and boom I was an accredited trainer.  (The picture below is my graduation day with my trainer.)

To hear the teacher compare the two I immediately agreed.  When I taught my classes I would explain to my PetParents that if you want your children to do something  you must be consistent, as if you want your dogs to do something, you MUST be consistent.  For instance, you want your dog to sit.  Start by using a small piece of food to lure your dog’s nose to point upward (toward the treat) and move the treat backwards over his head so that he naturally lowers his haunches to a sitting position. Don’t hold the treat too high or he may jump up for it.  Once your dog’s butt hits the floor say “YES” and give the treat, then say OK letting your dog know it is ok to get out of the sit.  You must do this for days to get the pattern down and make sure you get a good sit, it takes awhile, but sit is one of the easiest commands.

To teach your child to clean up you must show them the toys that are on the ground, pick it up and place them in the box.  You must show them how to do this every day AND give them praise for cleaning up, clapping, saying YAY, whatever it is make it fun.

Why do both of these work?  Have you heard of someone called B.F. Skinner?  He coined the term Operant Conditioning; a method of learning that occurs through rewards and punishments for behavior. Through operant conditioning, an association is made between a behavior and a consequence for that behavior.  If your dog or child is having a behavior that is not good, look for the reward they are getting and take the reward away which would be a punishment.  Once the dog or child is not getting the reward then the behavior will stop.

What is funny is that I searched for articles about parenting and dog training and found one on Modern Dog which lead me to one at the New York Times.  This article mainly talks about Cesar Millan teaching the role of the Alpha Dog, which I agree with, however I do not agree with some of  his tactics.

Do you see any similarities in dog training and parenting?  Please let me know below.

Father of the year

Have you heard about the father in Ohio that duck taped his daughter, placed her in a dog pin and dripped water in her face?  I just read it on CNN.  The father’s lawyer stated that this was a joke that got out of hand.  The father and his 13 year old son took pictures of the so called prank and uploaded them to Facebook.  Someone sent this evidence to the authorities and he has been arrested.

Putting shaving cream in your daughter’s hand while she is sleeping and tickling her nose so she will slap her face with it is a prank, not this.  This father should spend some time in jail and be made to attend parenting classes.  This can seriously mess up his daughters emotional state and it will come back to her in the future.  This teaches his son to not respect women.

What do you think should happen to this father?

Prison

According to the Arkansas Prison System, the second prison guard in the history of the APS has died at the hands of an inmate.  Sgt. Barbara Ester, 46, was stabbed by an inmate with a six inch metal shank.  CNN stated in their story that Ester was trying to take away a pair of non-approved shoes from the inmate.  The inmate took out his shank and stabbed her in the stomach.

I have never been in a prison before, but the ones on TV look really locked down, so how do these things get into the inmate?  This inmate is serving a life sentence already for murder and they have him in places where he has access to getting shoes?

The National Institute of Corrections stated in 2008 that the crime rate in Arkansas is 20% higher than the National average.

If prison is there to help keep people who break the law off the streets to protect us, then what can happen to protect prison guards?

Abortion

Reading through my Criminology book I see that crime is subject to where you are.  In our country you are able to have an abortion, but in another country you cannot.  You can only have crime where there is a law saying it is a crime.

I found a news story about how the law saying Abortion is legal will turn 40 years old this week.  In this article there are some women who speak about how they wish they had not aborted their children and speak about the consequences of aborting their child.

According to Conflict Theory we as a country will always have conflicting feelings about abortion.  Is it wrong or is it right?  The ones who can convince the correct people  will determine if it is legal or illegal.

What caught my eye in this story is a new “study”, that they did not cite, that shows there are more abortions when it is illegal than when it is legal.  That seems concerning to me, well either way it is concerning.  I personally know friends who are not able to have children and I know they would love to have a child instead of seeing them aborted.

What are you thoughts about this “study” that the news forgot to leave out?

Criminology Class

Criminology: is the scientific study of the making of laws, the breaking of laws, and society’s reaction to the breaking of laws. -Adler, Mueller, Laufer

Currently I am in this class this semester and I will enjoy it thoroughly.  With that being said, I will be quite busy during this semester.  The professor has us reading, taking quizzes, tests, writing a 6-8 page term paper and he wants us to write three articles a week about current events. I know, I know, this is college so suck it up and get your degree.

Since I wanted to blog more this year, I figured I would write my three journal articles here and then copy paste to my blackboard.  Please let me know what you think about my articles and the journals, I will let you know upfront that some of these articles will be controversial.

Thanks for reading a dugs life.

Dirty 30

Today is a special day, January 13, 2012. I turned thirty years old today. This birthday is a lot harder for me than others that I have had. Some of you may be saying that thirty is not old at all and I agree, but it FEELS old.

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I was talking with my wife about my concerns with turning thirty, mainly about not accomplishing as much as I wanted. She reminded me that my twenties were trying to get over something in my childhood. She is so right!

So what highlights do I have from my thirty years?

1. survived Houston, TX.
2. became a Christian.
3. graduated from high school, which a lot of teachers thought I would not.
4. met life long friends at a great small College. CRC!
5. met my beautiful wife at Harding University.
6. accumulated student loan debt.
7. changed a few jobs and gaining life long experiences.
8. meeting my daughter for the first time.
9. gaining employment at Arkansas Tech.
10. finding God as my Father.

I am looking forward to my 30th year and what it will bring to my life. If all goes as planned, I will graduate on August 11 and then start a masters degree in College Student Personnel (Higher Education).

I love my job that I have and do not plan on moving away from my department.

First day of classes started this week and I can’t wait to learn some Criminal Justice. You will hear about this more.
Until then…thanks for reading a dugs life.

2011 in review

Happy New Year!

 

One of my resolutions this year is to blog more.  Check out the stats about my blog from 2011.

 

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,800 times in 2011. If it were a cable car, it would take about 30 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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