Whorled View

January 2, 2009

New Years Resolution tickler.

Filed under: Communications,Health,Lifestyles,Miscellaneous,Sociology,Technology — lullabyman @ 10:40 pm

How do you keep a goal forefront in your mind so you’re always motivated to work on it?  I’ve tried all kinds of things in the past … as I’m sure most people have.  Quotes and reminders seem great, but they eventually seem to become lost in the noise and get ignored.  I also don’t like parading my goals around for everyone to see – goals are personal.  The idea should rather be to keep goals where they’re most visible to the goal-setter and not to everyone else … and to make it move, shake, or shimmy around and continually remind the goal-setter of the vision that motivates them.

So this last year I came up with something that does that.  It’s a little program that scrolls through a list of text and images that motivate me to achieve my goals.  It automatically boots up and sits on top of all other programs in the top of my computer where the title-bar usually goes (it can also be dragged around my desktop).  It also flashes at various times of the day to remind me to work on certain things.  It also gauges how much time I  have left in the day (starts out green, turns peach).  Below is a screenshot.

tickler
If anyone else is interested let me know.  I’ve been thinking about making a version where the content can be added on the fly (currently I have to recompile it with each change).

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November 4, 2008

I’d Celebrate More, Were It Not For Mob-Rule

Along with McCain I think our Founding Fathers also would agree that Obama is a good man and a good father, and as another human being we need not fear the man (even though I’m less than thrilled with much of his platform and his voting record – that’s beside the point).  Having an African American as president is an hallmark for equality that should be celebrated … and I’d have a much easier time doing that were it not for some elements of what Thomas Jefferson called mob-rule.

Before I go much further, I want to say that I believe it’s entirely possible that Obama would have been elected without the following elements in play and I fully support him like any president as if he would have been.  My point is, that these elements were in play, and that’s a shame.

If our founding fathers were raised in the same cultural climate as all of us they’d be thrilled with an African American winning the election, assuming democracy worked like it was supposed to.  That said, I think they’d be rolling in their graves if they saw the 3 powerful dynamics that have adversely affected the vote this year:

1) Two phrases I find disturbing are: “they [insert special interest group here] deserve it”, and “it’s about time”.

I can only hope for the sake of democracy that these phrases only are uttered in appreciation for the man that Obama is, not the office that he now holds as if he was entitled to it by virtue of his race.  I hope that every vote cast for Obama was done with complete disregard to the body he was born into.  Entitlement and preferential treatment based on someone’s color or sex in the election process seem at odds with the kind of democracy that our founding fathers envisioned.

In modern times most people seem unfazed, and even embrace entitlement as a viable reason to vote for someone based on whether they be female, a racial minority, ethnic minority, religious minority, physically handicapped, sexually-different or from any other historically disadvantaged group of people.  It almost seems that if you do not embrace entitlement as a viable reason to vote for someone then you might be called a bigot.

It wasn’t always that way.  Were our founding fathers bigots because they did not think that the body someone was born into entitled them to hold public office?  They were trying to get away from just such a thing after dealing with the British monarchy.

2) I just can not envision our founding fathers targeting transient individuals who are usually just too lazy and/or too disinterested to get registered and go to vote.  Tt seems our Founding Fathers were far more pragmatic and republican in nature than they were idealist and democratic.  The government they formed was not a pure democracy but a constitutional republic with democratically elected representatives. Thomas Jefferson himself, along with most others of his day, called democracy “mob-rule” because he understood common man has neither the time, patience, or desire to really understand the dynamics of facilitating a free and thriving society.  They understood that the nature of politics was very complex and thereby formed a government run entirely by representation of those who have the time, patience and diligence to study and understand the issues.  I’m sure they’d expect voters to do the same and would never wholesale promote uneducated voting.

Tell me, when you vote and there are two names up there for school district administrator and you have no clue … do you guess?  Or do you leave it blank?  The more democratic thing to do is to leave it blank, yes?  Then why would you encourage someone to vote who hasn’t studied nor has any intention to study about the characters and platforms of any of the candidates but simply wants to go with the flow?  You might as well guess on those items and politicians you know nothing about … it’s the same thing.

3) Complete unmitigated and unabashed bias throughout the so-called “free” press.  If you don’t have extended cable (basic cable only gives you the major networks), you are only served by the big 3: ABC, NBC, and CBS.  According to the Center for Media and Public Affairs 10 times more people (composed equally of republicans and democrats) feel those networks have been biased toward Obama than those who feel it’s been biased toward McCain.  In addition late night pundit and comedian jokes have been favoring Obama’s ticket by a factor of 7:1.

Item #3 would not be such a big issue were it not combined with item #2.  It seems Thomas Jefferson was right … and those who’ve historically pretended to champion the causes of Thomas Jefferson may have been the very same who’ve fulfilled his prediction: that all democracy at one point or another will turn into mob-rule.

Having an African American for a president is cause for celebration for the hallmark of equality it represents, but I only wish it would have happened without these dynamics.  I think it sure would have been possible, but then we’ll never know now will we?

November 3, 2008

Go ahead & insult me: Tell me to vote.

Do you go around telling your friend to take a leak or they might wet their pants?  Do you go around telling people to remember to breathe in case they might accidentally suffocate?

You don’t?  Well then please don’t tell me to vote.

Just because you auctioned off your grey matter doesn’t give them the right to sequester your vote.

As for me, and those of us who don’t have to be told to vote … we’ll make an educated decision.

I know it’s well intended, and honestly, I’ve been told to vote by some of the most wonderful, intelligent, and savvy people I know. In fact I know of no stupid people who are reminding me to vote. I also know I should take their encouragement as a compliment … obviously they think I’m going to make a wise choice or they would not want me to vote.

But I just can’t help but think that if you need to be told to vote then you don’t have a clue enough to make a wise decision who should run your government.  It’s just simple math.  Person needs convincing = can’t think for themselves = bad votes = bad results.

We might as well choose our officials with a random number generator.  That’s not democracy.  In fact, letting the most impressionable intellectual-push-overs determine election outcomes results in a huge bias toward the opinions of popular media.

So here’s my advice: stay home if you sup entirely from the boob tube and decided to vote because an actor or actress will insult you if you don’t.  If that’s the kool-aid that you drink then chances are I know who you’re voting for, and believe me … you don’t want to throw your vote away on someone of whom you really know very little.  If you’re letting someone do the thinking for you stay home.  Just because you auctioned off your grey matter doesn’t give them the right to sequester your vote.  Give them what they deserve: nothing.  Stay home.

As for me, and those of us who don’t have to be told to vote … we’ll make an educated decision.

Or, you can stop drinking the Koolaid and make an intelligent choice, but if you have to be told to vote I’m guessing there’s not enough time for you to do that.  It’s not too late though.  Start here: http://www.google.com/search?q=msm+kool+aid

September 29, 2008

Identifying racism or sexism … A Test

“… I won’t necessarily think you’re racist or sexist, but … some of your other recipients might not be as forgiving as me.”

My last entry was critical of Obama.  I’ve been just as critical of McCain (see “McCain debates Hillary, lovingly“).  Honestly, I would be equally critical of both more often if I found an excuse to do so, but I feel compelled to help even the playing field, and unless you’ve been hiding under a rock you have to admit that the MSM has been one sided.  If, for example, Palin had said that FDR did the fireside chats by TV then NBC, CBS, and ABC would have had a field day about it, but when Biden said that exact thing last week the only place you heard about it was on Fox news – a news outlet that liberals spitefully despise because they feel it tramples on their rights to deceive distort and dissuade the public on an otherwise monopolized news market.

But I’m getting off topic.

Sexism and Racism still exists in the media … and especially in non-professional media, such as grassroots email campaigns.  There are guilty people on all sides of the fence, and I think it’s pretty despicable whenever I see it regardless of who does it.  By the same token there’s a lot of posturing by calling certain comments or positions racist or sexist, as was recently done by McCain’s Fiorina when she freaked out about the “lipstick on a pig” comment- that she acted so offended was also despicable in my opinion.  Then there’s even posturing by accusing whole parties of posturing when it was only one person, as was done by nearly all liberal leaders accusing the republican party of posturing when it was only Fiorina who was freaking out.  That, in my opinion is equally despicable.  Now I’m just waiting for someone posturing by accusing me of posturing by accusing liberals posturing about Fiorina posturing about Obama’s benign “lipstick on a pig” comment.  If you’re not thoroughly confused now … let me just say this: there’s been way too much posturing on the issue of sexism or racism if you ask me.

“If you don’t really care whether people think your racist or sexist then you might not care to do this test. Maybe you’re confident that none of the recipients would ever consider you racist or sexist. Don’t be so sure.”

The bottom line is that there needs to be some kind of simple method whereby one can easily detect and determine the level of racism or sexism in a given comment.  I think I’ve come up with such a method:  You must imagine the comment in a completely sex / race neutral setting then ask yourself “is it just as funny or does it make just as much sense as before?”  If it is just as funny and makes just as much sense then it’s neither racist nor sexist.  If however, if it seems to loose some of it’s edge then perhaps it has some sexist or racist overtones.

For example: You get an email where a photograph shows Obama and Palin photoshop’ed in, and the photo is supposed to be funny.  Now imagine that Hillary had been nominated and so she was in that picture instead of Obama.  Does the picture still make sense? Is that photoshop’ed photo just as funny, or did it totally loose it’s edge?  If it’s just as funny then congratulations … what you have there is a genuinely funny article, otherwise it’s probably just racist or sexist (or both) and if you spread it around you will offend a lot of people – don’t kid yourself.

“… let me just say this: there’s been way too much posturing on the issue of sexism or racism if you ask me.”

So what?  Well, this method could be useful if you forward a lot of political opinions or content to friends and family.  Before you forward on that cartoon see if it passes the above test.  If you don’t really care whether people think you’re racist or sexist then you might not care to do this test.  Maybe you’re confident that none of the recipients would ever consider you racist or sexist.  Don’t be so sure. Most people live by the motto “actions speak louder than words” and many think that forwarding someone else’s words makes them your words.

I won’t necessarily think you’re racist or sexist, and in fact I’m more likely to conclude that you simply didn’t think twice before sending on that email with little regard to how it might offend others.  We all do thoughtless things, and it doesn’t make you a bad person to do so, myself being the prime example as I do thoughtless things all the time … but like I said, some of your other recipients might not be as forgiving as me.

September 26, 2008

Obama the hypocrite

Just posted this on YouTube…

With everything he says he’s obviously more interested in throwing blame, but then he accuses others of doing the same.

Conversely, grown ups put aside their differences to solve problems in person, rather than debating who’s to blame. Kind of like what McCain is trying to do.  Funny how Obama points this out, but can’t follow the advice himself.  Do I want to vote for someone who’s all talk and no action?  Do I want to vote for someone who can’t focus on solutions and feels he has to leave the kitchen because he’s causing problems by being there?

I ask, do you want such a person for your President, your Commander in Chief?

September 16, 2008

Bush-Doctrine Schmoctrine

I learned something pretty funny that I thought I’d pass on.  If you caught Charlie Gibson trying to be a barely-tolerant condescending snob to Sarah Palin for not knowing what the “Bush Doctrine”, you’ll think this is hilarious: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/12/AR2008091202457.html?hpid=opinionsbox1

“… if Charlie Gibson using a more obscure definition for “Bush Doctrine” isn’t funny enough … Gibson got the document wrong and Palin got it right, and after reading it I can only guess he’s never read it himself.”

In short, according to the originator of the term “Bush Doctrine” (coined even before 9-11) the definition Gibson used in the interview is NOT the original definition (Bush Doctrine: one-sided foreign policy), neither is it even the most widely understood definition (Bush Doctrine: spreading democracy throughout the world).  It is however the moveon.org favored definition (and a mangled definition as I’ll show in the next 2 paragraphs) used by ultra-liberal organizations in a way that misrepresents Bush’s policy on preemptive strikes.

Yes, if Gibson using a more obscure definition for “Bush Doctrine” isn’t funny enough, if you actually read the document to which Gibson refers to for his narrow definition (http://web.archive.org/web/20080307001029/http://www.whitehouse.gov/nsc/nss/2002/nss5.html) you’ll discover that the document is more about what Palin said than what Gibson said.  That’s right: Gibson got the document wrong and Palin got it right, and after reading it I can only guess he’s never read it himself.  Palin said the document was about protecting us from extremists, whereas Gibson wrongly thought the document was about preemptive strikes against any nation we found threatening.

“In other words, the document and Bush’s policies have never allowed, let alone advocated preemptively striking simply any nation that we might find threatening.”

Preemptive strikes was just one of the many strategies in that document, including additional strategies such as “enhance diplomacy” and “build coalitions”, but more importantly the document is very specific that it applies only to rogue, terrorist-sponsoring states who target civilians and non-combatants for terrorist activities.  In other words, the document and Bush’s policies have never allowed, let alone advocated preemptively striking simply any nation that we might find threatening.

Kudos to Palin for not being so narrow minded and misinformed and rude as Gibson seemed to be.  Double kudos that she wasn’t a condescending snob about enduring such a tedious interview with someone simultaneously so clueless and full of himself.

“I think we’ll start tuning into CBS, as apparently the ABC anchor is just as misinformed and unprofessional as those found on NBC.”

We’ve been getting our daily world news from Charlie on ABC World news report, but after this shameful display I think we’ll start tuning into CBS, as apparently the ABC anchor is just as misinformed and unprofessional as those found on NBC.

Edit: Sadly, CBS then proceeded with Katie Couric’s heavily edited and one-sided interrogations (Biden nor Obama got any) … seemingly trying to out do ABC in their efforts to sway the public to their opinion.

September 5, 2008

Sarah Palin’s a big meany? Yeah, right!

I love watching the ridiculous nature of the MSM (mainstream media) when they pull their keystone-cops routine, just like they’ve been doing with Sarah Palin lately.  I really do.  Sometimes I can’t decide which is funnier … David Letterman (who mirrors MSM political leanings) while he’s trying to be funny, or the MSM while they’re trying not to be funny.

Never is this more apparent than when things don’t go their way.  When things don’t go their way the double standard they set up is hilarious.  Maybe it’s just because I listen to NPR and watch non-Fox channels but I can’t tell you how many times over the last 24 hours I heard pundits disparage Palin for having remarks that were “belittling” to Obama.

Oh No!  Horrors!  She made Obama seem less than what he thinks he is (that is the definition of belittling incidentally)!  She might have hurt his feelings!  Surely he can’t defend himself so that was dirty pool.  Shame, Palin!  For shame!  As a side note: I seem to remember the MSM saying similar things about Romney for attacking his opponents records .. but in the end the MSM got their favorite Republican candidate: McCain, who’s ironically more likely to beat their favorite candidate than Romney was likely to do.

Of course, belittling the opposition is a VP candidate’s main job, and it always has been – it’s called “Good Cop” vs “Bad Cop” and it leaves McCain the role of playing good cop.  Palin was dutifully playing her part … and she did so with amazing alacrity.

Incidentally McCain played the “good cop” very well tonight in dealing with multiple hecklers.  It’s funny how democrats try to crash republican assemblies, but republicans never do the same to democrat assemblies – but again I’m getting off topic.

Yes, there’s hypocrisy in the MSM … feigning shock that she’d desecrate their idol, Obama.  What I found even more humorous though is the MSM was then so foolish as to prove her belittling attitude by showing a snippet where she mocks Obama for saying that small-town people “cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them”.

Okay.  All right.  So … apparently it’s okay for Obama to self-righteously belittle half the people in the US  by making a mockery of their faith and their right to personal defense, but Palin “belittled” Obama!  How could she!

What’s even funnier is all the so-called feminists who’ve ever since have been saying the most sexist remarks about Palin imaginable … claiming that either her kids will get the short end of the stick (ha! as if they really care), or the nation will get the short end of the stick.  Meanwhile I’m sure her husband’s thinking “what am I … chopped liver ?” – can’t he take care of the kids … or is not able, being a man and all – what a sexist assumption!   But the most ironic things is nobody on the left has stopped to ask “Why doesn’t anyone say that about any of the men running for office”?

I mean, aren’t liberal democrats supposed to be the last bastion of equal rights?  Aren’t they the ones who pretend to champion the idea that men should be held to the same familial standards as women (a perspective I actually agree with)?  So why would they say that about Palin, but not Obama.  You know … he has young kids too.

And are they so dense as to think that her kids will sit in squalor without any assistance from Federal staff or more importantly without love and affection from a father who’s been an excellent Mr. Mom for these last few years.  I’m guessing those kids will be doted on no less than were the Bush’s kids, the Clinton’s kids, or any other White House kids.  Sarah Palin’s kids will in many if not most cases receive just as much guidance and care from their father as the others received from their non-political parent.  Hey, wait a minute … Chelsea didn’t even have a non-political parent.  Amazing she hasn’t turned out to be some kind of axe-murderer.

Which brings up the other hilarious point.  I loved watching David Letterman last night – being his funniest (maybe “funny” is too flattering of a word … he was more like “ludicrous”) when he was trying to be his most serious.  You had to watch it to see just how clueless he was.  The audience was shocked really at what he said … his guest, Dr. Phil was a deer-in-the-headlights.  Both Letterman and Dr Phil commented on how silent the audience suddenly was, after which Letterman quickly realized he was way off base from all of his viewers.

I don’t remember Letterman’s exact words but in summary, Letterman was very harshly criticizing Palin for letting her daughter get pregnant.  That’s right folks … it was Sarah Palin’s fault her daughter got pregnant according to Letterman (apparently her husband is off the hook even though he’s been playing Mr Mom – but then I already mentioned the sexist views of the hypocritical left so let’s not delve further into that).  Essentially Lettermen went on to suggest that only an idiot would send their 16 yr old daughter out on a date without a condom (although not in so many words).

Now I’ve seen Letterman say dumb things before where he’s revealed too much about his ridiculous ideas, but even I was a little surprised at these comments, but what’s more I was really dismayed by Dr. Phil’s response.

There was none.  I kept waiting for it but nothing happened.  I kept expecting Dr. Phil to at least fix things a little.  Dr. Phil is generally pretty straight forward even as a guest and will try to nicely shed some healthy balance in such situations like gently mentioning that perhaps not everyone shares Letterman’s wacky views, but Dr. Phil did nothing of the sort.  Instead they both quickly changed the topic and thereby perpetuated a myth that only idiots believe that morality is more important than birth control, and that a baby born into a very loving home where the mother is only 17 is a horrible horrible thing that should be avoided … perhaps aborted at all costs, even if the father is a good reliable kid who loves the daughter and wants to make it right.

So by-in-large I found the MSM responses to Palin hilarious – with a few moments of disgust here and there where I saw the ugly little underbelly and bizarre beliefs that underlie those responses.  It has been overall, delightful to see the MSM squirm and I’m giddy about seeing more throughout the next 60 days … hopefully longer (like 4 years).  Just think … the first woman in an Executive Office will not be of the MSM ilk.  Palin has made McCain a real contender, and in a very real way she is even more capable than their own glorious Obama.  It’s making the MSM and their pundits run around like a bunch of decapitated chickens and I couldn’t be more tickled.

I only wish this show would have started sooner.

July 14, 2008

9 Troops Killed – How many soldiers is that?!

Check out the definition of a Troop:

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/troop

Notice something strange?  With 14 possible definitions, every single definition indicates that a troop is more than one person.  So how many people died when 9 troops are killed?  Well, let see if the minimum for a troop is 2 soldiers (and more likely 4 to 50), then with 9 troops killed that’s at least 18 soldiers, or more likely 36 to 450 soldiers … right?

WRONG.

Apparently when you’re the one who gets to create the news you can redefine words at your whim and fancy to mislead, confuse, and persuade.  In this case, whenever the mainstream media talks about “troops” being killed, it seems that according to the media a troop is one soldier.  That’s right.  One soldier.  So apparently if you’re in the news corp you can refer to Private Smith as Troop Smith (kind of like Trooper Smith except that “Trooper” sounds like only one person, and that’s not really what the media is going for).  Now, Troop Smith, is in my meager understanding a Troop of multiple Smiths, but then I’m just a regular guy who just reads dictionaries.  What do I know?  I’m not the all-knowing media.

Also when you own the media you’re allowed to ignore existing and more suitable words that the ones you redefine or make up, especially if they don’t serve your purpose.  You can, for example, ignore the word “Soldier” which, like “Trooper”, sounds like only one person.  That’s not good if you want 9 Soldiers to sound like even more than what they already are.

Someone correct me if I’m wrong – but 9 soldier deaths (as horrible as they are), is mathematically far far less than 18 soldier deaths , or (what fits the definition more closely) anywhere from 36 to 450 soldier deaths, which has a lot of shock value.

Just something to think about next time you read X-many troops killed.  Don’t be fooled by the mainstream media.  Instead, just get out your dictionary and a pen and write in there after definition number 14:

15) troop – what the msm likes to call one soldier when they want the number to sound really large.

June 24, 2008

Apology to those who were offended

I removed my post about my criticism of Carlin from yesterday because I’ve since come to realize many people saw him as family and are in pain or feel a sense of loss with his death. I was wrong to reason that there’s been and will be so many platitudes and pandering this week and next that my little pip-squeak contrarian view was okay to voice at this time.  I was wrong and I’m sorry.

May 29, 2008

Reconnecting with kids after divorce

As a family we’ve been reading “7 Habits of Highly Effective Families“, and lately we’ve been reading about the unique challenges divorced parents have.  No matter who you are or what you’ve done, my heart goes out to you if you are having a difficult time reconnecting with your children.  As mentioned in the book we’re reading that’s perhaps the most difficult challenges you’ve had to face.

In my family I know that’s been the case.  I’m not divorced, but like everyone I have many friends and family members who have been.  We’ve made some real effort as children, all of us have, since my parents divorced a dozen years ago, to get over feelings of resentment and betrayal.  Our parents have made some real efforts to try and reconnect with us kids to mend those ties as well.

Although you may be divorced I must point out that there is a good chance that this entry doesn’t apply to your situation.

With that in mind, let me also say that I know that regardless of the circumstances divorce is devastating and few people deserve the pain of a divorce, and yet almost half of all Americans will experience that pain.  Besides, many of you if not most (at least most feel this way) endured a terrible relationship for the longest time before you were divorced.

Also, many of you, after many years of the divorce are still beating yourself up over it.  Stop doing that.  I’m certainly not doing that with this blog entry.  You need to forgive yourself if you think you need forgiving, and you need to forgive your ex because if you have spite it is just gnawing at your soul and rotting in your gut in a way that just hurts you in the long run.

My main intent is in this entry is to help those of you who are challenged by the idea that even after many years some children still haven’t forgiven you.  Many of you feel that they have no right to be angry because of the divorce.  If you feel this way then you are probably already doing all the wrong things to reconnect with your kids, even though you think you’re doing the right things.  I strongly suggest that you can start the path to reconnecting with your kids if you read the book “7 Habits for Highly Effective Families“.  If you want your kids to “get over it”, then this book will help you help them get on that path.

It will make you feel better, largely because it will help you understand and get you on that path to reconciliation.  It’s also just an amazing book for anyone and everyone – and, no, it isn’t for perfect families … quite the opposite.  It’s written for you, and for me, and for everybody regardless whether they’re married or have kids or not.  Everyone is after-all a family member no matter what, and although each family is vastly different we all deal with the same kinds of issues even if they are at different levels.

If you’ve made some real efforts to reconnect with your children then that’s wonderful and I applaud such efforts, and as a child of divorced parents I hope you continue doing that (but make sure you’re doing the right things).  Especially if it doesn’t seem to be working, find out what might work, and keep working at it.  Sometimes it may feel like it isn’t working, but in truth you’re making deposits into an emotional bank account that was probably far more withdrawn than you may have ever thought, but in time you will find those deposits were worth it if you don’t give up.

As a family today we read something from that book that was profound and especially applicable to this topic: “I’ve come to give a simple four-word answer; ‘Make, and keep promises’ … I’m convinced you would be hard-pressed to come up with a deposit that has more impact in the family than making and keeping promises … the promises we make in the family are the most vital and often the most tender promises of all … Even when promises have been broken in the past, you can still [say]: ‘Will you please give me one more opportunity? Not only will I come through, I will come through in gangbuster style.’ … Dealing with a difficult problem, and a mistake in an honorable way, [makes] a massive deposit in [thier] emotional bank account.”

I know that works with me.  “Make, and keep promises”, is one of the best formulas for success in life, and especially for mending ties that were damaged by broken promises. But you have to both “Make” and “keep” a promise that they’d appreciate.  That may even mean they may want you to promise to leave them alone for a time – now you must promise to honor that wish, and you have to keep it, no matter how much it hurts you.  Don’t promise something they don’t want, and don’t break the promise whatever it is.  Lastly, you also have to expect nothing in return (that’s discussed later in the book) or it will only eat you up inside, in which case it may do the same to them.

Hey, nobody said it would be easy, but these efforts are worth it.

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