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Thursday, January 9, 2014

An Ode to a Ring

There are few things that express a woman's individuality in quite the same way as her choice in jewelry. Some women are earthy goddesses with a taste for grounded gems and hand wrought adornments. This silver and emerald ring is made for those women who value timeless beauty and natural Earth-born stones.

The craftsmen started with .925 quality silver. This is the highest purity of silver that is used for fine jewelry. Each ring is crafted into a one of a kind form. Filigree and wire wrap work together to create a band that evokes a bohemian lifestyle. As emerald is a delicate gem, this setting is a bevel or Gypsy style to protect the brittle edges.

Emerald is a glorious stone. It has a beautiful sheen and an even lovelier meaning. This stone is often called the queen of gems or the stone of successful love. Some believe that natural emerald helps to cleanse and balance the Heart Chakra. The energy of an emerald is soothing to heal the heart and spirit. It embodies compassion, unconditional love and a balance between partners.

In ancient Greece, the emerald was dedicated to the Goddess of Love herself, Venus. In far off Babylon, it was sold in markets as a goddess embodied. It was Cleopatra's favored stone and held to be a symbol of eternity. In other words, it is the original stone of love. The mere diamond is but a new player on this ancient field.

This particular stone is cut in a round emerald cut. It isn't the highest quality of stone...but it is perfect for me in its natural imperfections. It is gently nestled into its nearly flush setting. Some call this style a Gypsy setting, for reasons that have been lost to time. Hand set details surround the stone, little silver knobs and braided metal. This delicate wire work embellishes the cut outs and stone shape in the thick silver band.

It is my engagement ring. It evokes love, growth and harmony. It is simply glorious.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

I'm pretty sure I was just hit by a black hatter.

Wrote this for some guy claiming he wanted to set up a kickstarter to build an electric bike.  As it was rejected.. I post it here to establish ownership. (After a few edits... and a picture.)

My cargo bike in the snow with a week's worth of groceries for two.

Electric Cargo Bikes Save Money and Time

Today sees our society facing an uncertain energy future. We are already past peak oil production. Fuel prices will continue to rise. We must embrace new technologies and new ways of doing things in order to adapt to the changing times. Or, as the case may be, the wedding of tried and true techniques to new technology.

Almost everyone has ridden a bike. We all know that they work and that they work very well for daily transportation. In fact, biking has become a popular and inexpensively effective way to get around quickly. In cities big and small you will see people zipping around on their day's business on bikes. 

Unlike an auto, a bike requires no expensive gasoline. The costs for a bike's maintenance and upkeep are far less too. A bike may need new tires every few years, a cable or brake may need to be replaced or the saddle replaced. And, it is advised that a heavily ridden bike undergo a professional overhaul once each year. Still, the price of bike tires, cables and brakes plus a mechanic's time is a mere fraction of the comparable work on a car.

There are a few minor issues with the use of a bike as one's main form of transportation. You are the engine. If you are tired, ill or disabled you may have trouble using a bike. If you have a heavy load to transport, you may be unsure as to how you are going to transport it on a bike. And, your speed is entirely dependent on your own muscles. An electrically backed up cargo bike goes far to answer these concerns.

On an electric cargo bike you get around quickly and cheaply even if ill. The 'fuel' is readily available in your own home. You simply plug into the wall and you are good to go in a matter of hours. The power provided by the electric motor serves to back up and enhance your own capabilities. You may also coast along if tired or ill. Some models even charge up as they are pedaled! The capability added by the electric power gives you much of the freedom of the automobile but without the high cost of fuel.

The cargo capabilities are priceless. Most trips made by people are made to fetch groceries or other needed goods and bring them back to the home. Traditional bikes offer little in the way of carrying abilities. Food is bulky, heavy and a necessity. The built in abilities of this bike will take the trouble out of any grocery run. Front and rear racks allow pannier or baskets to be easily snapped on or off as needed. Nothing could be simpler.

It makes sense that we seek the least expensive and most effective transportation methods available. Adding electrical power to the time tested and very green bicycle  will allow many more people to adopt a bike instead of a car lifestyle. Nothing but good can come from this paradigm shift.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sample Chicago Format Short Researched Essay.

(NOTE: This will not format footnotes or the bio correctly.)

Global Warming, Scientifically Supported or Not?

Sample Essay
In the last ten years the fact that the Earth's climate is changing has become widely accepted. Climate change, often called global warming, is the process by which scientists measure the shift of climate on a global scale. Scientifically there is little debate on the subject. The Earth's climate is changing. Humanity is the most likely cause of the change. Mainstream science sees no reason to debate this further and yet the question is often raised, seemingly from the dead.
Climate change includes many different processes. In general, the Earth's temperature has risen 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit over the last century. If the situation continues, the Earth could warm another 2 to 11.5 F over the next hundred years. This does not seem like much. It has however had a number of already apparent effects on the environment. The oceans have warmed and this has caused them to become more acidic. Droughts, wildfires and other extreme weather events have become more common and stronger. Most noticeably, the ice caps and sheets have begun to melt, which is causing the sea levels to raise. 1
The Earth's climate can be seen as a balancing at between the heating effects of the greenhouse gases and the escape or reflection of heat into space. There are three main ways that the Earth’s temperature is regulated. Changes in the amounts of greenhouse gases change how much heat in held by the atmosphere. The sun itself can experience fluctuations in energy output which effects the energy levels that reach Earth. If the Earth's surface and atmosphere change reflectivity then the amount of heat caught or reflected will then change the Earth's overall temperature. 2
It is believed that most of the warming is due to the rapid increase of greenhouse gases created by humanity since the Industrial Era.3 All available evidence seems to support the theory that at this time in history, the change is not 100% natural. Over 97% of self identified climate scientists who are actively publishing accept the evidence of climate change. Only some 2.5% of the top 200 researchers as ranked by expertise deny that climate change is happening.4 In fact, as the amount of published work increased, the number of climate deniers was found to decrease. Those who published fewer then 20 papers on climate science were more likely to be climate change deniers, at some 80% of those authors. This means that these people are not often published in peer reviewed journals. Those papers they do publish are not as likely to be cited by others; they lack scientific prominence as defined by the researchers.5
           A few things can be inferred from all of this information. Scientific evidence fully supports the theory of climate change. All of the processes are not fully understood yet, but, humanities' heavy use of carbon based fuel sources is most likely to be the impetus behind global warming. Global warming is likely to get worse before it gets better. Ignoring the causes and processes of climate change will most likely lead to greater levels of warming and thus greater dangers to the survival of human society. Those scientists who claim that global warming is a hoax are not experts in the field. They are a very small percentage of the number of those studying the phenomena. The work they do publish is not heavily published in peer reviewed journals.
           It would not be amiss to say that these people are fringe elements and not representative of the majority of scientists working. Furthermore, the fact that they are not published in peer reviewed journals or are heavily cited tells us that other scientists do not believe what they write is worth too much thought. If the experts do not see any merit in these claims then maybe, just maybe, neither should anyone else. 
 __________________________ ___________________________________ _________________
  1.“Climate Change: Basic Information,” United States Environmental Protection Agency, September 9 2013, http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/basics/

2. “Causes of Climate Change,” United States Environmental Protection Agency, September 9 2013, http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/science/causes.html

3.  “Climate Change Indicators in the United States,” United States Environmental Protection Agency, September 13, 2013 http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/science/indicators/ghg/index.ht

4. William R. L. Anderegga, James W. Prallb, Jacob Haroldc, and Stephen H. Schneidera, "Expert credibility in climate change," Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States., 107, no. 27 (2010): 12107-12109, 10.1073/pnas.1003187107 PNAS (accessed November 5, 2013).

5 Ibid.


United States Environmental Protection Agency, "Climate Change: Basic Information." Last modified September 09, 2013. Accessed November 5, 2013. http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/basics/.

United States Environmental Protection Agency. “Causes of Climate Change.” Last modified September 9 2013. Accessed November 5, 2013. http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/science/causes.html

United States Environmental Protection. “Climate Change Indicators in the United States.” Agency, Last modified September 13, 2013. Accessed November 5, 2013. http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/science/indicators/ghg/index.html

"Expert Credibility in Climate Change." Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United  States.. no. 27 (2010): 12107-12109 . 10.1073/pnas.1003187107 PNAS (accessed November 5, 2013).


There is nothing like cycling. The caress of the wind on your face, the bike flexing under you as you power up a hill, the satisfaction of getting to someplace new under your own power. There is nothing like it. It has been said that that feeling you have while cycling is to know how birds feel as they fly. It is true.

I picked up cycling as an adult like many others do. I needed a low impact exercise and it looked like more fun then the gym. A little footwork on craigslist and I was the proud owner of a 1996 Schwinn 6 speed cruiser. It was teal, curvy, and weighed 40 pounds. The first day I rode maybe two miles. My rear was sore, my legs ached and the back of my neck was burned where I'd missed a spot with the sunscreen. But I had remembered what it was like to be 14 again with nothing to do but ride and no worries beyond that day's math homework. In short, I had remembered how to fly.

During the next month I replaced the saddle and rode nearly 100 miles. At times my bottom was so sore that I could barely sit down. In two months time I had began to spurn my car for shopping trips. I took my bike instead. Baskets had sprouted from her rear and sides. I had even given 'her' a name, Esmeralda Sue. Riding her still felt like flying, like being 14 and free again.

Today finds me with a stable of three bikes. Esmeralda, a fast road bike and a red bike that is teaching me bike mechanics as I restore it. My kitchen is full of bikes and bike parts and bike tools. I rarely drive the car. And, it still feels like flying.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

'Blog style' First Person Informative

My water bill has been running a bit high. There is no reason for this so I must have a leak. There are a few easy ways to check and see if I do, thankfully. If I hear the sounds of water running when no water is running, then I may have a leak. If I can find moist, discolored or smelly areas inside my home, I may have a leak. If I have an odd green spot in the grass outside I may have an outside leak. Problem is, it is really hard for an untrained individual to do much more then these basics.

So, I have a leak in my home. I'm sure of it. I'll need the services of a leak detection specialist. Finding a leak can be difficult and even destructive if not done correctly. Some people actually look for leaks by knocking many holes in the walls or tearing up insulation to see the pipes. I want someone who uses the latest technology to look for and find the leaks... without tearing up my house!

Such technology does exist. I don't have to worry about anything being destroyed just because of a hidden leak, thank god. This new method of detection uses infrared to read heat levels in my home to find problems. The use of infrared technology in the search for leaks makes for a much less destructive and more accurate detection service. This latest technology can even detect problems that cannot be seen by the human eye. That means no destructive probing methods!

Infrared Leak Detection will detect hidden water leaks and pinpoint their sources. It will also discover a few other kinds of problems that may be hiding out in the home. It will find hidden nests of unwanted creatures like insects or rodents. Some pests are very hard to detect in early stages of infestation but they are there, still doing damage. Their numbers will increase if they are not found quickly and removed. That means more damage and more money to repair. Early detection is key.

This new technology will also detect warm and cool spots in my home. What this means is that it will sense where I may need to apply more insulation for better weather proofing or if the heating system is losing heat somewhere it shouldn't. This means my money is saved. This technology can also detect electrical 'hot spots' that can cause fires. That means a safer home for me and mine. This is not a bad value for my money at all. They find my leak and I am getting all of these other benefits at the same time. I can't go wrong!  

Purpose of this Blog

This blog exists to hold a few samples of my writing.

It also exists because not every client out there is on the up and up.