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One Exotic Motorcycle

I often ask myself, which motorcycle that I have owned was the best one? Would it be the very first Yamaha dirt bike that I talked my parents into getting for me, or perhaps my very first Kawasaki road bike that gave me unbelievable freedom at a time in my life when I needed it? It could be my friend’s 750 Ninja that I rode for the better part of summer and never got around to buying from him. Maybe my favorite is my old BSA Lightning that got all the looks and a ton of questions when stopped to fuel it up. Then again it could be the biggest two-wheeled machine I have ever owned, my Suzuki cruiser that I bought last spring.

My problem is I don’t think I have ever been on a motorcycle that I really did not like. To answer this question I have to figure out simple criteria by which I can rate the different bikes I have owned. After much thought I got it, which bike do I always find myself looking up on Craigslist or eBay, just to see if any are for sale and how much the seller wants? That would be the 2005 Buell City Cross motorcycle I traded in on the Big Suzuki.

Erik Buell was a motorcycle racer and engineer that had a dream to make the best American sportbike, one that would compete with the big four. Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, and Suzuki have dominated the market and the races with there well-designed machines. Buell started making bikes, on a shoestring, along with accessories like Motorcycle gloves back in the late ‘80s and in 1999 he joined into a parent company agreement with Harley Davidson. Buell had about a ten year run with Harley and made some amazing bikes, and I was lucky enough to have owned an XB984 model. What Harley giveth, Harley eventually taketh away and shut down the Buell plant in 2009, I traded my Buell off shortly after that. I guess you could say I switched brands, although getting a new Buell at that point was not likely.

I do miss that bike, it handled great, just loved twisty roads. My Buell did not have the horsepower of a liquid-cooled four-cylinder made by the other manufactures, but the handling and the feeling kind of made up for its shortcomings in power. The motorcycle always started nice and ran good and I don’t remember ever doing anything to the bike except standard maintenance. The Buell and I out riding got a lot of attention and I like showing off with it, stunting with it was a dream and like I said it was fast enough.

Being the lucky person I am, I have owned a lot of nice vehicles and a pretty good number of them were motorcycles. The one that I remember with the most fondness has to be Erik Buell’s creation. I will not only miss the bike that I owned and rode for four summers, but I will also miss the motorcycles the Buell was going to create but never got a chance.

Cloud Computing Will Be Big For Large Corporations, Less So For Personal Computing

What is cloud computing? Basically, cloud computer was first envisioned by John McCarthy in 1960 who believed that in the future computing power would be sold much as how electricity is sold by a public utility. The biggest benefit would be for large corporations whom would not need to run certain business applications in house, but rather could farm out these digital processing jobs for a certain fee to an outside company. With the advent of the internet and server farms owned by large corporations such as Microsoft, cloud computing appears to have arrived. At least for the large company that doesn’t want to spend capital to buy the required hardware themselves.

Large corporations such as Amazon noted that they had large excess computer capacity and utilized perhaps only ten percent of the computing power on most occassions, but keep the extra computing power in reserve for use during peak business periods. If companies were allowed to buy computing power when they needed it, it would eliminate the cost of maintaining hardware, as well as other overhead costs.

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Negatives about Cloud Computing

I first heard about cloud computing perhaps a decade ago, only it wasn’t called cloud computer in the popular press at the time. The oracles of the computer world believed that in the not-so-distant future home personal computers would be more like terminals which log into a centralized computing system which provided the muscle and run the application, such as a web browser or word processors, and also served as a place to store files. While this has some advantages, such that a person could in theory access their files from anywhere in the world, and pay only a fee for how often an application was used instead of the retail price, it seemed somewhat un-American to me, or at least very non-western. Almost as though it was a direct analogy to the centralized planning of former communist regimes. Some Americans want to have total access to their files and their applications on their own computer, and don’t want to have to worry about relying on some centralized computer.

Would a centralized computing system be safer against data loss? Most IT professionals recommend that you should back up your personal data on a optical disc for the ocassion when your personal computer crashes, not if, but when. So for me the idea that information is somehow safer on a centralized system is a non-starter.

What about being able to access your data anywhere in the world? The miracle that allows this to occur is the internet, not cloud computing per se. You can access your data on your computer if it is connected to the internet, although this may introduce some security risks. In fact, the software exists today for you to be able to access the files on your computer from anywhere in the world. Nowadays, files can be easily transfered on flash drives and other portable medium, so this is much less of a positive in the world of personal computing than in the past. However, for busy working professionals, such as structural engineers working on a new bridge design, the ability to have immediate access to large and complex files manipulated by sophisticated software anywhere in the world is a plus.

Security is another issue when the brains and memory of your computer are stored miles away. A dedicated hacker, or disgruntled employee, could easily target such data farms and copy millions of files of personal information and sell them on the black market. No doubt this may be done one day if it hasn’t already happened. Personal computers are also vulnerable to hackers, but the career criminal may go after the big banks of information stored at commercial data farms, rather than individually hacking personal computers. If I want to have a personal computer that I use to store personal financial information, then I could easily do this by buying a $600 laptop and simply disabling the Wi-Fi so that it never connects to the internet, thus greatly decresing the risk of hacking.

For these reasons, I think that cloud computing has great advantages in certain specific areas of the corporate world, but much less so in the everyday personal computing and small business world. In addition, personal computing power has increased significantly, so much so that future notebook computers such as subsequent versions of the iSlate being produced by Apple may be able to store dozens or even hundreds of movies on solid state memory, thus largely reducing the need for cloud computing on a personal computing level.

Downloading songs and movies via commercial services such as the iTunes store has become ingrained in the American concious as the same as buying something. Somehow it doesn’t feel the same to buy a file, such as a movie, and have it sit on some data farm that I can’t access if I got out of range of working Wi-Fi. If you have a file on your computer then you have access to it if you have power and your computer is working independent of your current internet connectivity.

In resource poor settings, such as developing countries, opportunities for using cloud computing could involve the use of low-cost solar powered netbooks which allow access to vast database of information, which could include practical information such as weather, information about infectious disease outbreaks, and even HIV/AIDS education.

While data farms owned by large corporations such as Google and Microsoft are trying to expand their business selling memory, there is always the risk that due to a faulty internet connection you may not be able to get to your data when you need it most. While this maybe OK for family movies which have been digitized, you may not work to put your work online, especially if you work under tight deadlines.

First Dates in Las Vegas that Won’t Cause Bankruptcy

First dates are risky. As a male, I find myself paying for most of them and my most common concern is: How much should I spend and where? If, for whatever reason, your date doesn’t work out, then you’ll not want to have spent too much on it, while, at the same time, you don’t want to spend too little and give a poor impression if she winds up being someone special.. That said, I’ve complied the three best spots for a date in Las Vegas, without it hurting your wallet too badly.

Date location number one: Regal Cinemas at the Aliante.

The Aliante Hotel and Casino isn’t anywhere near the strip, located at 7300 Aliante Parkway, in North Las Vegas. The Aliante boasts an IMAX movie theatre capable of rivaling any of the big name casinos while leaving out the big name’s price hike. Adult IMAX tickets cost $17.25 while regular movie tickets cost $10.75. Your date will appreciate not being taken to a standard movie theatre and your wallet will appreciate not taking a beating.

Date Location Number Two: Town Square.

Las Vegas Town Square is an outdoor mall of sorts featuring all the big name clothing stores as well as a wide variety of restaurants. Located at 6605 Las Vegas Boulevard South, it features one of the nicest atmospheres in all of Las Vegas, complete with tree-lined streets and old-fashioned light poles and camouflaged speakers providing mood-setting music. For a first date location, I’d recommend going to California Pizza Kitchen or Brio’s Tuscan Grill, both of which will run you around $15-18 a plate, without losing the nice atmosphere. Then, go on a walk, buy dessert from one of the many stands set up in the park in the center of Town Square. It’ll make your date feel special and give you ample time to talk, (and your wallet ample time to breathe a sigh of relief).

Date Location Number Three: Picnic on Mount Charleston.

Las Vegas in summer averages over 100 degrees — hardly the weather for a picnic. Fortunately for those of us who enjoy the outdoors, Mount Charleston typically is 10-20 degrees lower, providing the perfect atmosphere for a picnic. Grab some food from the grocery store or a good place for take-out (such as Café Rio) and head on up to the mountain. It’s got several designated picnic areas, as well as scenic hiking roots. Naturally, don’t head up there if your date isn’t much of an outdoor person, but if she likes lovely views and a relaxing outing, Mount Charleston is perfect.

Those three places have yet to fail me in determining whether or not a second date is a good idea, as well as letting me afford said second date. Enjoy.

Fast and Easy Poker Party Food Ideas

Poker night can be a real blast when you take the time to serve up some killer poker party foods! When preparing for a poker party, nothing could be more fun than adding a theme to the event and good food. Some great party themes and décor that I’ve experienced include; Casino Night, Mardi Gras, and a Hawaiian Luau.
The key to a great poker party is all in your preparation. Before your guests arrive you should have everything set to go. Table clean, clear and setup, babysitter arranged, sturdy paper plates, napkins, background music, and let’s not forget the food.

Below are a few quick and simple crowd pleasers that make for delicious Poker Party Foods.

Double Baked Potatoes

Ingredients: 6 potatoes, sour cream, butter/margarine, bacon bits, salt/pepper, chives, cheddar or pepper jack cheese

These taste great and are easy to make. Take 6 potatoes and thoroughly wash the skins, then poke with a fork five or six times, drop into a microwave safe bowl and pop them into the microwave for about 8-12 minutes (or until tender). Once baked, pull the spuds out of the microwave. On a cutting surface, slice them all in half. Next with a table spoon or an ice cream scoop, scrape the insides into a mixing bowl leaving just a husk of skin with a small amount of potato inside. Place the husks on a baking tray and set them aside for now. Next add some butter, chives, bacon bits, salt, pepper, shredded cheese and sour cream to the mixing bowl and using your mixer blend the ingredients until smooth, just like mashed potatoes. Now spoon the mixture back into the potato skins, top with a little more shredded cheese and pop in the oven until warm and melty. Now they’re ready to serve.

Loaded Nachos

Ingredients: yellow or white corn chips, 1/2lb ground beef or turkey, 1 small can sliced jalapeños, 1 small can diced tomatoes, 1 small can sliced, sour cream, ½ of an onion (diced), bacon bits, shredded cheddar cheese, shredded pepper jack cheese, 1 packet of taco seasoning,

No one can resist these nachos! Start by combining your meat, diced onion and taco seasoning in a frying pan over med/high heat and stir until browned and broken up into very small chunks. On a platter, pour out a generous helping of corn chips. Next spoon out your freshly browned and seasoned meat into the center of the chips, and add several handfuls of cheese. Sprinkle on some bacon bits and place in the oven at 300 degrees or microwave about a minute until cheese is melted. Now you can add your cold ingredients; jalapenos, olives, diced tomatoes, and a dollop of sour cream. Now they’re ready to serve.

Fresh amp; Spicy Guacamole Dip

Ingredients: 3 ripe avocados, ½ tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp chili powder

Not your ordinary guacamole. Slice avocados in halves and remove the pits. Using a fork, scoop out the avocado meat into a bowl, add the lemon juice and chili powder. Mix and mash with the fork until creamy. The lemon juice will help prevent browning. Now your ready to serve it up with some chips.

Fast and Easy Pizza Bread

Ingredients: 1pkg of 6-8″hoagie rolls, 1 small can of tomato sauce, shredded mozzarella cheese, (favorite toppings of your choice), Italian seasonings of choice

It doesn’t get any easier than this. Open and pour your can of tomato sauce into a bowl, stir in some garlic powder, oregano, and basil. Then set that aside. Next grab a baking sheet, split and layout the sandwich rolls on it. Using a small ladle or table spoon add sauce to each half roll. Top each roll with shredded cheese and any of your favorite pizza toppings. Pop in the oven at 325 degrees until melted. For crispy bread, baste the edges of the rolls with olive oil, (or another cooking oil of your choice) before adding the sauce and toppings. Ready to serve!

Make your next poker night a smashing success with these great poker party food ideas.

Fallout: New Vegas Review

You say I was a currier tasked with taking some poker chip through the Wasteland but then along the way I got shot in the head? Some random robot dug me out of the ground? Wait, why did they even bother to bury me if they just wanted the chip? Oh well, thanks for patching me up doc!

The Good:

If you enjoyed Fallout 3 then you should know exactly what you’re in for here. Fallout: New Vegas is more of the same, but is that a good or a bad thing? For players new to the series you shouldn’t have any problem jumping right into the game because it does a good job of explaining exactly what you need to be doing and how to achieve your goals. So what’s so darn good about this “New” Vegas? Exploration of course!

The Wasteland is a fun place to explore because you never know what could happen next. In one play through I ran into a correctional facility and since I chose to do the starting quests a certain way I was fired at on site. On a second play through I was allied with the facility and that’s exactly what the game is about! You choose who you want to ally yourself with and play the game the way you want to play it. You can literally run through the entire game killing everything you run into and still complete the main story line. Of course, you could also pretend to be on someone’s side only to backstab them later when something better comes along. How about going through the game never firing a single shot? It’s your choice.

So how exactly do these factions work? Unlike in Fallout 3 where you were strictly on a Karma based system indicating whether your character was ‘good’ or ‘evil’, New Vegas improves on this by using a new reputation system that makes one of the many factions like or dislike you. There are many ways to raise or lower your standing with these factions which include doing quests for them to improve it or killing their members to reduce it.

There are 3 major factions in New Vegas which are trying to take control of the strip and you can choose to side with or betray any of them. You can also just choose to take over the strip yourself and eliminate every faction in the game. Along with the 3 major factions there are many “minor” factions, which include The Brotherhood of Steel, which you can also help out along the way. The game does a good job making you feel like your actions really help mold the virtual world around you.

The Bad:

The bugs! Within 48 hours of the release of New Vegas 2 patches were released that dealt with an enormous amount of bugs. Keep in mind that this game was developed by Obsidian which is a company that doesn’t have the best track record for keeping their games up to date or even releasing them finished (see Kotor 2). Even with the already released patches, the game still suffers from major quest bugs including those that can and will be game breaking. In the game’s defense however, Fallout 3 was also really buggy on its initial release. The only thing that bothers me is that 2 years later these issues should’ve been corrected especially since its running on the same engine.

If you can get past the bugs or at least wait for a patch that corrects them, there are still other issues to consider that include lacking voice overs and graphics, invisible walls in a game that’s supposed to be wide open to the player, a repetitive music track due to the lack of songs available in the game, an ending that halts gameplay after the final mission (they didn’t learn after Fallout 3) and last but not least (and my personal favorite) having many areas literally closed off to lower levels. So what happens when you wander into an area that you’re not intended to explore until you’re a higher level? 5-10 Deathclaws literally rip you to shreds. At least the bridge isn’t broken right?

Verdict:

Fallout: New Vegas doesn’t really do anything new or spectacular. It’s more of what we’ve become accustomed to during our 2 years of playing Fallout 3 and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The bugs are what literally cripple New Vegas especially when they’re so game breaking.

The PC version is by far the best running of the 3 versions available (PC, Xbox 360, and PS3). While it still has its fair share of bugs, you can expect higher FPS and less overall issues. The Xbox 360 version will be getting DLC earlier, but keep in mind the hundreds of mods that are already available through sites like http://www.newvegasnexus.com for the PC version.

So what’s my verdict? The game has the potential to be just as good as Fallout 3 was and is, but it’s going to need to be patched which could happen tomorrow, 2 years from now, or never.

Face Reading- Dating, Poker, Business, Sales, Jury Selection (Physiognomy)

Face Reading- Your Face Tells the Truth

(Photos by Lin Klaassen)

Lin Klaassen is not a psychic but she knows all about you. All Lin has to do is read your face. Lin explained, “As long as I can see your face, I can read it. At a glance, I can know more about you with face reading than any other way.

Your facial features create a living ever changing personality profile, a history of who you are. Genetically you are born with the blueprint of your parents and ancestory then as you go through life with friends, teachers, and other influences. Changes evolve based on the behavior you embrace or let go.

You are born with certain traits just as you are born with certain muscles. There are 144 muscles and 14 bones in the face. The bones don’t change as much as your muscles do. Each of the 144 muscles as well as every line, indent and crevice in your face tells me something about the person.

The average person would usually have 50-60 traits, but not all of them. You have to learn to read the traits and apply those that are important to particular type of interactions.

Whether it is for law enforcement, parenting, dating, sales, poker players, jury selection, business, or getting along with people, they each are interested in different personality traits.

As a jury consultant, an attorney contacts me to discuss the basis of his case and his idea of an ideal juror. The attorney may be looking for someone who is detail oriented, logical, and unemotional because they are presenting a lot of detailed evidence, facts, and figures. The juror must be able to follow the presentation. An attorney with a personal injury case wants the juror to have an emotional connection with the defendant for a high settlement. Sometimes the trial is won or lost by the time the jury is seated based on how well the attorneys have selected the jurors.

Only the attorneys know why I am in the courtroom. The Supreme Court ruled, ‘Your face is exposed to the world on a daily basis therefore you have no right of privacy.’

It is important to recognize the STAGES OF STRESS in yourself and co-workers. Every corporation should have them posted in the break room. People don’t show up at a post office or high school and start killing their peers without warning signs. You don’t know what will be that last straw.

Most people can change from first and second stage stress on a daily basis. Their body is telling them something is wrong when they are no longer able to deal with stress. When a person experiences mental stress, we also see a corresponding physiological response in their eyes. With even a mildly stressful feeling or thought, our eyes will react to indicate our true mental state. Stress hormones enter the blood stream while the eyes and skin show it first. Rest, sleep, ad lots of water as soon as possible are the solution.

When there is white all around their iris, the colored part of the eye, we call it ‘Dear in the Headlights’. That person is ready to be violent.”

Lin Klaassen offers complete How to Read Faces Guides for Poker Players, Dating, Sales, Acing the Interview and more. www.facereadingbylin.com

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Eagle Waters Resort: Best Resorts in Eagle River, Wisconsin

Eagle Waters Resort is located in Eagle River, Wisconsin, and offers year-round fully furnished lodging, private cabins and condo units. Eagles Waters Resort is located on the shores of Eagle Lake, and offers facilities that can accommodate weddings, banquets, and any other private events. Listed below is a detailed personal review of Eagle Waters Resort in Eagle River, Wisconsin.

Location amp; Travel Information:

3958 Eagle Waters Road, Eagle River, Wisconsin 54521 (Phone: 715-479-4411 or 800-892-8377) (Website: http://www.eaglewaters.com/)

Travel Distances to Eagle Waters Resort in Eagle River, Wisconsin: (www.mapquest.com)

Madison, Wisconsin: 228 miles / Milwaukee, Wisconsin: 274 miles / Green Bay, Wisconsin: 164 miles / St. Paul, Minnesota: 261 miles / Chicago, Illinois: 367 miles / Wausau, Wisconsin: 88 miles / Stevens Point, Wisconsin: 120 miles / Appleton, Wisconsin: 158 miles / La Crosse, Wisconsin: 255 miles

Important Key Notes amp; Tips about Eagle Waters Resort in Eagle River, Wisconsin:

* resort located on Eagle Lake, * resort is open year-round, * resort offers lodge units, * resort offers cabin lodging, * all lodging is fully furnished, * resort includes facilities to hold private events including weddings and banquets

About Eagle Waters Resort in Eagle River, Wisconsin:

Eagle Waters Resort in located in Eagle River, Wisconsin. Eagle Waters Resort is situated on Eagle Lake, which makes up part of the 28 lake chain, and is the world’s largest inner coastal freshwater chain. Eagle Waters Resort offers year-round lodging, including fully furnished lodge units, private cabins, and condo units.

Things To Do, Activities, Recreation amp; Sightseeing:

Eagle Waters Resort offers numerous year-round activities for everyone of all ages. Specific recreational activities available at Eagle Waters Resort includes year-round fishing on Eagle Lake, a heated outdoor pool, campfires, tennis amp; basketball courts, volleyball amp; horseshoes, water sports, sightseeing at the Nicolet National Forest, access to snowmobiling trails, nearby golf courses, an indoor fitness center with spa and massage room, and an indoor game room with pool tables, air hockey and darts.

Facilities amp; Amenities:

Eagle Waters Resort offers fully furnished lodging, including 24 kee-mi-con lodge units, 15 cabins, and 6 condo units. All kee-mi-con lodge units are furnished with full kitchens, washer/dryer, air conditioning, gas fireplace, phone and satellite TV. All rental units (cabin and condo units) include basic kitchenware, stove, refrigerator, microwave, coffee pot, garbage bags, bed lines, towels, TV, VCR, charcoal grill, picnic table, and dock space, with a beautiful view of the lake from each unit.

Eagle Waters Resort also offers a restaurant onsite at the resort, as well as facilities that can accommodate private events such as weddings, banquets, anniversary parties, and retreats to name a few. The facility for a particular private event can accommodate up to 250 people, with lodging available onsite at Eagle Waters Resort.

Lodging Prices amp; Costs:

Eagle Waters Resort offers various lodging rates to accommodate all guests. The most affordable lodging rates cost around $117 to $130 for a one night stay, while two-day stays cost around $99 to $120 per night. More expensive lodging units cost on average around $200-$300 depending on specific amenities. Weekly and seasonal lodging rates are also available.

Summary and Recommendation:

Overall, Eagle Waters Resort is one of the best resorts in Eagle River, Wisconsin. Whether you are looking for a personal vacation getaway destination or a luxurious place to hold your private event, Eagle Waters Resort has all the accommodations to suit your needs all your round.

Dirt Devil Upright Vacuum Cleaners

There are certain things you look for while trying to buy a vacuum cleaner. Does it store easily? The type of handle is important. Is the handle easy to grip? Does it make your hand tired? The weight of the vacuum is important. Is it too heavy to pick up? Is it easy to move around? Do the wheels move easily? Does it have pickup power? Are the dust bags easy to find? Are the dust bags easy to put on? Is the cord long enough? Does it have the tools needed to do curtains and, corners? Will the tools dust above the window seals and the ledges? Will it fit if I want to vacuum my stairs? The task at hand has a large effect on what the consumer is looking for. These are a few of the questions asked. The Dirt Devil Vacuum has been satisfactorily answering these questions for years.

The Bagless upright has finger tip controls reaches corners easily and cleans stairs and the cord is retractable. The price is $ 296.99. A special filtration system in the vacuum cleaner catches dust and pet hair in your home.

A Reaction Dual Cyclone with extra tools cost about $153.99. This vacuum has a scuff bumper and a five level height adjustment.

The Dirt Devil Vision is self driven, has a filter and has a 30 inch spread. It is priced at $99.99. The E drive in the Vision upright adjusts to your work pace.

The Vision self propelled that sells for $170.49 is a bottom empty design and traps almost 100% of allergy causing materials. It carries extra large dirt capacity.

This Vision Has two stick. Self propels backward and forward; bagless design, with a 32in. cord. This little vacuum cost about $115.00.

The Featherlite Bagless is $76.99. Weighs a little less than 14lbs; with a handle that folds down this makes the vacuum an easy storage item.

Spinnergy is priced at 80.00; also easy to handle. The handle converts into an extension wand. The Sinnergy vacuum carries a large dirt capacity holder; with a five position height adjuster.

The Dirt Devil Dynamite is not a full sized vacuum. It is light weight, but still gets the job done; priced at about $60.49.

The Dirt Devil Reaction Fresh Upright has more suction with the dual tunnels for dust. This separates the dirt making for better suction and the dust bin is easy to empty. This little work saver sells for about $ 153.00.

Reaction Dual Cyclone cost about $170.00. This vacuum has no messy filter cup and has a pet brush that rotates making it easier to clean pet hair.

The Featherlite Carpet Extractor cleans carpet with five strong brushes and sucks up excess water. Cost about $99.99.

The Ultra Swivel Glide has a filtration system for allergy sufferers. It swivels and is one of the easiest vacuums to handle and it has a system to let you know when you need to change the bag, no guess work and sells for $87.99.

These appliances are household necessities, and are put on sale from time to time. Discounts are sometimes 20 to 30 %. These are all very good vacuum cleaners. The utility of the vacuum determines the price, but the average price is around $100.00. The Dirt Devil is one of the standard vacuum cleaners in the appliance section of most stores.

Dirt Devil Self-Propelled Vacuum Cleaner: A Review

I recently had the chance to use and review Dirt Devil’s Self-Propelled Vacuum Cleaner. My Mother had purchased it for my Grandmother to use because of the power assisted pushing feature. My Grandmother was battling cancer which took away some of the strength she needed to push the vacuum. The power assisted pushing feature would require less of an effort on my Grandmothers part and ultimately help her stay self-sufficient. Here are my findings after trying the vacuum:

Advantages of Using the Dirt Devil Self-Propelled Vacuum Cleaner:

1. This vacuum cleaner has the most powerful suction I have ever seen. It picks up every piece of dirt and leaves the carpet looking incredibly clean.

2. This model is bagless. Not having to buy bags can save quite a bit of money over time. Plus replacing the bag in my opinion was always a hassle. I could never seem to get it on just right.

3. It is equipped with a Hepa filter, which traps 100% of pollen and ragweed as well as 99.97% of other dust and allergens. Definitely a necessity during Spring when pollen counts are at their highest.

4. Speed Control. Since the vacuum drives itself it comes with two speed settings. Slow and Fast. For my Grandmother slow would be the setting of choice.

5. Scuffgaurd. This vacuum is equipped with a scuffgaurd to protect your walls and furniture.

6. Attachments. This model comes with the regular attachments plus a Turbo Tool (a powered brush that cleans upholstery quickly) and a deluxe automatic stretch hose which extends your cleaning reach over 13 feet. Perfect for my 5′ Grandmother to get those hard to reach places.

7. Pick your setting. Choose from 5 different settings (low pile to high pile).

Disadvantages of Using the Dirt Devil Self-Propelled Vacuum Cleaner:

1. This vacuum is suppose to make vacuuming effortless because of it’s assistive pushing. I found, however, that if you don’t push the vacuum hard enough (to go forward) or pull it hard enough (to go backward) it jolts, makes a noise like it is mad at you, and resists going. This defeats the purpose of my Grandmother using it because she wouldn’t have enough strength to push the vacuum to make it go.

2. The Hepa filter easily becomes clogged and even after vigorous shaking doesn’t come completely clean. After the first few uses it isn’t clear how much of the pollen, ragweed, and other allergens you are really being shielded from.

Overall, if you are a healthy individual and have no disabilities that would prevent you from pushing the vacuum, I would suggest you buy it for the sheer fact that it is extremely powerful and sucks up even the hardest to reach dirt. However, if you are limited in the area of strength, this vacuum is not for you.

Concert Review: Davy Jones

August 19, 2008
Club Regent Casino
Winnipeg, MB Canada

Though he’s grown a few wrinkles over the years, former teenage heartthrob Davy Jones certainly hasn’t grown any taller than he was back in his heyday with the Monkees.

The diminutive Jones started as a song and dance man when he when first came to North American as the Artful Dodger in a Toronto based production of the musical Oliver, and it seems that he’s come full circle. His nearly 2 hour show at the Club Regent was an entertaining potpourri of songs, jokes, and anecdotes from his wildly popular NBC music comedy – the Monkees.

But the Jones’ presentation seemed totally in line with the Monkees’ show format – a zany, gag filled romp about a fictional rock n’ roll band that incidentally included a few songs from the band along the way.

As Davy himself joked, “the songs w e did back in the sixties were only a minute and 12 seconds long, I have to fill the time with something!”

Judging from the adoring crowd reaction, Davy could easily have spun yarns and told jokes for the entire show, but thankfully he did get around to performing many of his famous Monkees hits.

The former BBC Coronation Street star opened the set with the Monkees’ 1966 Neil Diamond penned No 1 I’m a Believer (the song from the movie Shrek for the youngsters in the crowd). Mickey Dolenz originally sang the lead vocals, but it was interesting to note that Davy’s voice suited the song very well, and it could just as easily have been his voice that scored with the original hit.

He had a tight 6 piece band with a real brass section as opposed to the synthesized variety who did a solid job both instrumentally and vocally.

The Daydream Believer hitmaker then gave a doff of the wool hat to fellow Monkee Michael Nesmith, performing the Nesmith penned Papa Gene’s Blues from the 1966 Monkees’ debut album.

Next came a punched up version of another fine Neil Diamond composition Look Out Here Comes Tomorrow from the Monkees 1966 album More of the Monkees, followed by another Nesmith penned track from the same album, Mary Mary.

A consummate showman, the 64-year-old Jones did an excellent job of engaging the audience, cracking many self-deprecating jokes about his height, age, kids, and his career ups and downs. He shook hands with many of the fans in the front row told and told an interesting anecdote about appearing on Ed Sullivan the day on the same bill as the Beatles first North American TV appearance and then treated the fans to the song Consider Yourself from the soundtrack of Oliver, the piece Jones had performed on Ed Sullivan on that historic evening.

The former horse jockey also pulled out some interesting jazz swing numbers such as Louis Jordan’s Is You Is, or Is You Ain’t My Baby that he dedicated to the memory of his parents.

But of course, the fans came mostly to see Davy perform his Monkees’ hits and Davy did not disappoint. Crowd favourites were 1967’s Pisces, Aquarius, Capricorn and Jones’ – She Hangs Out which featured Davy doing his famous dance (famously stolen by Guns N’ Roses singer Axl Rose), 1967’s Monkee’s smash hit A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You, as well as the 1968 Boyce and Hart penned Monkees’ hit single Valleri.

Of course, the biggest highlight was The Birds, The Bees and The Monkees 1968 chart topper Daydream Believer which the ex-Monkee used to wrap up the set, followed by a reprised I’m A Believer for his well-deserved encore.

Davy Jone certainly made “believers” out the crowd as they filed out, eyes shining, having spent the evening reminiscing to the soundtrack of their youth.