Getting a conversation started

One of the most intimidating situations for most people is to enter a room where they know virtually no one. It feels uncomfortable. This is where the art of networking come in. Networking is all about making connections with people to see if there could be a reciprocal relationship built around helping one another. Sometimes it’s challenging to just get that conversation started. Here are three tips to help make it easier:


Blue Moon on August 31st

 A rare "Blue Moon" will arrive in the Eastern US at 9:38am Friday, August 31, 2012.  A blue moon actually has several definitions, but this one is because it's the second full moon during the month of August.

For many of us, this blue moon is bittersweet because it's also the first full moon after the death of Commander Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the Moon, who died on August 25th.

Lots has been written and said about Armstrong's life.  For me, his stepping on the moon on July 22, 1969, instantly brings me to exactly where I was and who I was with.  It does that for many people who were around in the crazy 1960s when "all heck" was breaking loose at the same time mankind was doing incredible things. For a lot of us, the moon landings meant that "we" could do anything.  Just think of all that has been developed since 1969.  

Yes, I want us to go back to the Moon.  And send people to Mars.  And fix the issues here on Earth.  It's all within our grasp...we just need the drive and perservence to make it happen.

For now, I, along with many others remember Neil Armstrong.  His family issued this heartwarming statement the day after his death:

"For those who may ask what they can do to honor Neil, we have a simple request. Honor his example of service, accomplishment and modesty, and the next time you walk outside on a clear night and see the moon smiling down at you, think of Neil Armstrong and give him a wink."

Father's Day is coming!

Dear Family:

Sunday, June 17, 2012 is Father’s Day.  As you know, Father’s Day is one of my favorite days of the year.  A day off of work including “No Yard Work” is just heavenly.  Someone else running the grill for dinner is wonderful as well.  Even Dads like to be pampered – once in a while!

Generally, I’m not one to who’s particularly interested in extravagant gifts.  However, just in case… here’s a list of potential items that fits any of your budgets:

Technology devices

  • Anything from Apple – Virtually every device with an “i” in front of it from Apple is on my hit list of wants, needs, and loves.  The new Apple TV seems really cool. There are also dozens of accessories from iPad covers to Bluetooth interconnects.
  • Android phones and tablets.  Not for me, but some other Dads really like them.
  • Even with my iPad, a Kindle book reader is also a great gift and quite inexpensive.  Kindles are fabulous for reading out in bright sunlight.
  • eBooks – Amazon, Apple, and Google all have them.


If I only read my junk mail

(Editor's Note:  We have known Jane Cage for well over 20 years as a business owner and now the Chief Operating Officer of Heartland Technology Solutions.  She's based in Joplin Missouri and has been very active in her community rebuilding after the devestating tornado in 2011.  It's really nice to see that Jane has kept her sense of humor.)

 If I only read my junk mail, I wouldn’t be writing this article in English. I could have "Fluency in Spanish in ten days?" or I could "Learn Japanese Rapidly" by "Utilizing our sneaky linguistic secret".  

If I only read my junk mail, I would be a better communicator by "Breaking Bad Communication Habits" and learning to "Be a mentor & Teacher". I could even "Learn Psychology completely online."  

If I only read my junk mail, I would have more cash in my pocket because I could "Avoid Pain at the Pump" and "Get a Free Shoes!" I could get "30% off select furniture" and an whopping "85% on Printer Ink –Shipping On Us."


Cornell live Bird Cams

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During this spring, the Cornell University Lab of Ornithology has set up two live "Bird Cam" sites.  This is an extraordinary way for bird lovers and others to check-in live on bird nests.  There are a Great Blue Heron nest and Red Tail Hawk nest both being live-streamed 24x7.  Along with the video streaming, there is a live-chat available as well, where viewers from around the world can ask questions and post comments about the birds.  Hundreds of thousands of viewers from around the globe have checked into the sites.  

This is a fascinating use of video and audio technology along with the Internet that can reach professionals, educators, students, and the general public all at the same time. 

Here is the URL to the Red Tail Hawk Cam.  The Great Blue Heron Cam can be tabbed from that page - enjoy.

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