Help My Sister – Go Fund Me…

I stepped into new waters today by creating a GoFundMe for my Sister, Darci.  The three separate cancers are wearing her down and the money situation only made it worse.  I could not help much with the actual cancer part, but I did tell her I thought it would help to do a fund raiser.  This one should reach more people.  I struggled with doing it for about an hour and my learning curve went up in the process.  What I can say is that it’s a great idea and I hope it works as well as I think it does.

You can see it here: Darci’s Fund Raiser Donation

Please let as many of your friends see this (copy or reblog) and ask them to do the same.

Even those (like me!) who really can’t spare much, may feel $5 to be okay to part with to help Sis.

Regardless, thanks for reading this post.  I love you all, even if I don’t know you – my soul does.

Namaste,

Scott

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A Week in the Life of…

It has been a long week.  My Sister going through radiation/chemo treatments for brain cancer, having just finished it for colorectal cancer, and knowing she has one more surgery and rad/chemo round to go for the third type of cancer she has Merkle carcinoma (think that’s right) on her leg.  Mom is stressing over this and having some health problems, while I am still recuperating from my hip surgery in April.  There are good things happening:  I am getting my sugar count under control, I am working out 2-4 times a week, Sis is responding to the treatment.  So what didn’t go so well?  My love life. Looking back on it, I should not have even started it, but…we are all human I guess.  I would have advised someone else against it, but you decide…

Last Friday night I was looking through “my matches” on a popular dating site.  This site would allow me to see women from 44 on up.  The site has proclaimed that allowing more age difference than this can lead to problems of things…  I prefer to look at a bit younger, but that’s the policy, so I live with it there.  Anyway, I had selected a group of women to look at.  I was seeing if proximity was a problem, if they smoked too much, too many children, and so on.  Just trying to avoid most of the problems I normally run into.

I finally had it down to 3 or 4 that I would read in depth and decide if letters were going to be sent.  One, in particular, caught my interest.  She was in her early 50s, attractive (the photos were obviously from when she was younger, but fine, deal later- why do men get in so much trouble if WE do that very same thing, but it’s okay for women?).  She lived in nearby Indianapolis.  I answered her letter, stating we should “Talk” (that means talk through the website, normally). I send it and go to the next one.  Within 5 minutes she had responded.  Her response was to say, “You’re right, we should talk” followed by her cell number.  I don’t usually do that, but I was the one who used the word “talk”, my fault, I supposed.  I send her a text and got an answer very quickly.  This conversation started at about 12:30AM and ran into the wee hours, mostly because reception in my area is so poor.  I went to sleep for a short time, waking up to realize that she had already deleted her account and I hadn’t spoken to her at all.  I was tired and upset and tried to call her number…a few beeps, nothing more.  I texted her and got an almost immediate response.  She explained all that she had done, moving most of it away with the idea that she was in the military intelligence and all were “under surveillance”.  She also was not sure what had happened, but she was 32 and stationed in New Jersey.  For the next few days we texted.  I spent some time early on researching dating scams and seeing how she fit into them.  She didn’t, but one article stated that some went on for months or years gaining your trust to get the payout at the end.

She was looking to get serious fast (one of the earmarks of scams) and was furious when she found out I could not give her children.  She then asked about adoption.  I didn’t think this was sounding much like a scam, but I didn’t tell her anything I haven’t said here or on Facebook.  We continued through the weekend. I would like to say we shared information back and forth, and we did, but each time I asked a question she would take sometimes hours to answer.  She said she was at work and couldn’t talk all the time, but this happened off-hours, too.  The worst thing that I saw was she had a temper and moved too fast through everything.  She was talking about marriage and living together and we hadn’t even met. These things finally got to me.  I ended it on Tuesday in a text that she didn’t respond to for over 6 hours.  She texted back and told me that she didn’t know why I was so negative about things, but she didn’t need that in her life. bye.

There was more, of course.  I did Google her and her pics, checked out the NJ Military base, even sending an inquiry to personnel about her existence (word of advice – be careful with that one.  You may have to tell her and that is not fun at all!).

I don’t know if I was being Catfished or if she was legit and just young and angry. Doesn’t matter now; it’s done.  I am glad.  The entire thing wore me out mentally and even physically.  It wasn’t worth it, I don’t think so, anyway…

What do you think?

Namaste, my friends,

Scott

A Revisit to Passwords

I was reading a blog post by a woman who had to choose a new password for her blog because they old one had been hacked.  She had also had her debit card hacked.

This is the life we live in. If computers are going to make our lives easier and faster, it will also be true that some people will do harm through them.

I gave a post on creating passwords some time ago.  Since then I have learned a couple of things that will help keep your computer files and money saf-er.  No computer is entirely safe from hacking.  Even if you don’t have it hooked up to the Internet, someone could break into your house, steal the computer, and hack it later.  But passwords are great IF they are selected with some care.  For example:

These are people who have scammed people for a long time, but now can do it, mostly, from their home through computers. Most computers are fairly easy to be hacked, but you can deter them by using a password 12-20 characters long where you use at least 1 letter lower-cased, 1 letter upper-cased, 1 number, and 1 acceptable special character. Now, don’t make it your phone number or something like that. Ideally, it should have letters and characters on both sides of the keyboard and be a pretty random assortment of characters. Never reuse a password. And, when you do the secret questions, don’t use real answers, use ones that you will remember because they are ridiculous. “Where were you born?” Answer: elevator.

This is a very simple and fairly uncomplicated explanation of how to choose passwords.  If you have to write them down, fine, do it on a pencil/pen notebook and leave that notebook at home.  I have approximately 37 passwords and all of them follow the rules from above.  And you need to do the same for every password.  You never know what a person could learn if they hacked your “game” password.  Norton has a great program that “remembers” your passwords and encrypts them, putting them into the site when requested.  You can also view your passwords here to see what they are if you need to manually enter one.  Not foolproof, just good.  I am told that most hackers will not usually mess with your account if the password is up to speed.  Ideally, you should change them every 30 days.  The big reason for this is that if someone is working on getting into your account and is using password crackers, it is hopeful it will take them long enough to get your password that you have changed it.

The world is a rough place.  Why make it harder on yourself by having to deal with hackers and scams?

Namaste,

Scott

Whoa! Didn’t Quite Expect That – Guess I Should Have

On Jun 8th, I shared a post on Facebook.  It drew attention I hadn’t really anticipated.  Then I decided to answer the attention.  Then I decided it was, perhaps, worth a post to get some of your responses.
Below is the post.
Image may contain: 1 person, smiling
June 6 at 5:14pm · 
Comments
xxxxxxxx: Well 7 of 9 supreme court justices don’t agree. Plus all the things listed people are refusing to sell, not make. Finally they have just showed the intolerance that groups have for people with religious beliefs. The very thing they rail against. WHY would you even consider forcing and giving your hard earned money to someone who doesn’t approve of your lifestyle, there were surely other bakers who would have been happy to take the couples money. So whose being the a#%h@*”?

Scott L Vannatter
Scott L Vannatter You know, the only reason I posted this was because so many people use their religious beliefs to belittle and tell people why they are wrong. I have friends who are LBGT. Not all of them are great people. But, notwithstanding the fact that they have their own prejudices, most of them are pretty tolerant of an awful lot. Not all religious people are bad either. Not all of them stand behind their prejudices 100% either. I have friends on both sides of the fence. I like those people, not because they can’t stand something, but because they are just nice people. xxxxxxx, I have to admit I didn’t fully understand all you said. I didn’t go and look up any of the “facts” you stated. All of those may be right. There is some evidence of intolerance for people with religious beliefs who have prejudices toward others who don’t share their beliefs. I also don’t know who created this as far as I don’t know her as a person. What I do know is that the LBGT has to tolerate a lot more prejudice, in general, than pretty much any religion (perhaps, other than Muslim). I am not siding with anyone here. I found it Funny and a finger pointing at most groups we have. I think the key words are “hides his bigotry behind religion.” Not all religious people do this. However, there are those who are truly afraid of anyone who disagrees with their religious beliefs. My spiritual beliefs are very open and I am happy with that. If you are happy with your own religious beliefs, wonderful. I wouldn’t try to change yours. I believe in allowing each person the freedom to follow their heart and soul as long as they don’t forcefully tread on someone else’s right. Thanks for commenting. 
Would love to hear your comments,
Namaste,
Scott

Really Mad, not “Acting”

I got up rather early for me, this morning, about 8:30.  That’s early because of going to bed at 3:00, but still…

Anyway, got up, got breakfast ready, then computer time for email, and beginning-of-day stuff.  While I was going through email, I saw one of those ads about seeing pictures of all the stars and their children taken at the same age.  It is basically to show how much they look alike.  And, they do, for the most part.  What was, at first, annoying, then, infuriating, was the person assigned to write the captions to all the pictures.  I think it is so cool to see the resemblances between parents and children, especially if I haven’t seen or, perhaps, don’t know the children.  That is what I wanted to see and hear about.  Yes, I wanted to know if they followed in their parent’s footsteps.  Yes, I wanted to know how they were doing.  What I didn’t need was a caption-by-cation talk about how “we hope so-and-so got a good inheritance”, “so-and-so doesn’t need a good inheritance”, and so on and so on ad adnauseum (yeah, that may not be right, but you know what it means).

It’s as if not a single actor or actress today would think of doing anything but living off of Mom or Dad’s money.  I know there are a few…mention those.  But to keep harping on the financial independence so much made me so upset, I quit looking at the pictures and stopped to write this post.  I mean, really, kids are not truly that bad.  Yes, there are some (read that as “a lot”), however, many many kids in their 20s and 30s do work and work hard.  To have to keep saying that “so-and-so certainly does or doesn’t need the money” only tells me that the caption writer did no research, had no time to write, did not care about the subject.  All of these are good reasons not to publish such stuff until it is done right.

Maybe I am just flipping out, maybe I am just tired, but it seems to me that there is more to the stories if people would just take some time (something not prone to do in today’s world) and study their jobs at hand.

*The “” were mine for emphasis, not to be construed as a direct quote.

Namaste,

Scott

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