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Would YOU go?

 

Over the course of my life, I’ve always wanted desperately to see an extraterrestrial spacecraft up close. Many years ago, I used to wonder if I’d have the nerve to approach one, if it landed. Well, quite some years back, I came to the definite conclusion that yes, I definitely would indeed approach one, if given the opportunity.

My friends used to chide me on that account, saying that I was crazy, cuz they (ETs) might experiment on me, performing all sorts of unknown, horrific procedures. Of course, it’s not as if that hadn’t crossed my mind, but I’d long since decided that it was worth the risk, for the potential enlightenment & gain in knowledge.

Then came the movie “Fire In The Sky”. That one kinda spooked me, & for a little while, I was actually having second thoughts, & was much less certain that I’d still have the nerve to approach a landed craft, if the opportunity arose. This apprehension was short-lived however, & I soon returned to the state of certainty & confidence which I live by. Yes, becoming a “victim” IS one possible outcome for this scenario, (IMO), but the potential gains (for ME, anyway), far outweigh the risks.

These days I persue a regimen of meditation & skwatching, with the aid of binoculars & a laser pointer. I’ve reached a point in my lonely, solitary, humdrum existance, that I’ve come to the definite conclusion that if ETs landed & offered me a chance to leave with them, even with the stipulation that I’d never see home again, I’D STILL GO IN A HEARTBEAT!!

I’ve had several experiences which seemed likely or promising, but at the same time, inconclusive & somewhat ambiguous. EXCEPT ONE…

One night before heading out for my skywatching session, I opened the door & casually waved the laser pointer around, just kind of playing, really, & not expecting anything. Suddenly, to my amazement, the car headlights came on! Now, this is a car which has a remote control for the lights, door & trunk locks, & even the horn, but I live in a very rural area, with no neighbors within a half mile, so there’s no way anyone could be within range with a remote. Additionally, those are digital remotes with unique frequencies, making it HIGHLY unlikely that someone else’s remote could affect the car. The headlights stayed on for about 30 seconds, & faded off.

Since digital car remotes work on radio frequency, not light, I knew my laser couldn’t have been the cause. In fact, I wasn’t even aiming it at the car, but just to be certain, I tried. As expected, there was NO WAY I could affect it. I tried shining the laser all around & all over the car, and at all different distances, even up close. I covered nearly every inch of that car with the laser, & guess what? NO EFFECT WHATSOEVER! I’ve even tried on multiple occassions since then, but there’s just no way whatsoever to have any affect on that car with a laser pointer!

I’ve since researched it a bit, & been told the exact same thing which I already knew… there’s no way to affect a car’s remote controls with a laser pointer! At the time of the event, there were no planes flying over, no traffic on my seldom-travelled road, & noone else around. Nothing whatsoever that I can attribute this event to! So where does that leave me?

Call me crazy, but I think it was an answer of some sort. Although this occurred about a month ago, & I’ve had nothing else “conclusive” happen since then, I’m ever vigilante, & continue to be hopeful for up-close & personal contact with benevolent ETs.

So, if they landed & gave you a choice, would YOU go?

SirJoey

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Screwed by the cops AGAIN!

 
Few things in life are more unjust than being punished for something that is totally beyond one’s control, however that’s exactly what happened to me in the early morning hours of August 4th, 2007, while driving through the state of Georgia.
 
It was 5:30 a.m. I was driving my pickup truck & towing a trailer. Since it was still dark out, I was driving exactly 5 m.p.h. below the posted speed limit of 55. In spite of this, I didn’t see the stop sign until the last second. There was no flashing light to warn of the impending intersection, & the road I was on was coming to a "T", where I would have to turn left or right. Although I was able to slam on the brakes BEFORE I actually reached the stop sign, it was too late to stop in time, especially with the weight of the trailer pushing me. I skidded across the intersection, off of the other side & into a tree.
 
The truck was a total loss. Due to the trailer I was towing, even the rear end of the truck was wrecked. Fortunately, I didn’t hit anyone else, no property damage was done, & my passenger & I were both unharmed, as we were both wearing seat belts.
 
Help finally arrived in the form of the Georgia State Police & a tow-truck. The tow-truck driver proceeded to pull my truck out & load it up, informing me that it would cost me "ONLY" $100 to get it back!
 
Then, the cop decided he had to write me a citation for disregarding a stop sign! I was STUNNED! It was obvious to a blind fool that I had TRIED to stop! The skid marks started well BEFORE the stop sign & continued through the intersection. I explained to him that I had TRIED to stop, but my plea fell on deaf ears. He was already well aware of this anyway, as he had already measured the skid marks himself! All he could see was the chance to write another citation, apparently to add another mark to his tally for the month! The fact that I had already lost my truck, incurred $100 in wrecker expenses, & was now stranded in the state of Georgia, nearly 150 miles from home, apparently made no difference to this gung-ho cop. He had to punish me even further with a citation that ended up costing me $95 more! Talk about getting kicked when you’re down! Was it really necessary to punish me over something that I had absolutely no control over? Hadn’t I suffered enough?
 
Apparently, it is the policy of the G.S.P. to punish EVERYONE, every chance they get, regardless of circumstance. When the old slogan "To Protect & Serve" comes to mind, I wonder, who exactly are they "serving"? Obviously, the state, (more revenues) & themselves (more citations on their monthly quota).
 
Events like this, where cops victimize the innocent, are the very types of events that make normal, decent, law-abiding citizens HATE cops, & it makes me definitely want to stay away from Georgia, where the policy is apparently, "SCREW EVERYBODY TO PROTECT & SERVE"!
 
Joey Wallace 
 

Celebrity Alter Egos

 
I have come to the conclusion that there are many celebrities in Hollywood and in the entertainment industry in general, who are masquerading as at least two different people!
   
 
Here is my list of celebrities who are using two or more identities, but are actually the same person!

 

Geoff Tate = Michael Keaton = Mark Miller
Reese Witherspoon = Shannon Kenny = Julia Stiles
Michael Jackson = Diana Ross
Megyn Price = Mira Sorvino
John Candy = John Madden
Maura Tierney = Daphne Zuniga
Denver Pyle = Donald Sutherland
Jack Noseworthy = Ron Howard
Samuel L. Jackson = Laurence Fishburne
Chris Rock = Chris Tucker = Eddie Griffin = Dave Chappelle
Montel Williams = Louis Gossett Jr.
Christopher Lee = Peter Cushing
Rachel Luttrell = Jennifer Lopez = Sallie Richardson
Bryan Brown = Michael Caine
Lisa Hartman Black = Jennifer Aniston
Bette Midler = Sara Jessica Parker
Ben Affleck = Ben Stiller
Teryl Rothery = Dawn Wells
Christian Slater = Jack Nicholson
Michael Ironside = Kurtwood Smith
Michelle Lee = Barbara Eden
Nancy Travis = Andie McDowell
Tobey McGuire = Topher Grace = Dave Foley
Dennis Leary = Willem Dafoe
Angie Harmon = Jordana Brewster
John Rhyes Davies = Sebastian Cabot
Seth Green = Jaime Kennedy
Rena Sofer = Amanda Peet
Michael Clarrke Duncan = Ving Rhames
Mary Hart = Faith Hill
Joe Rogan = Tony Danza
Bret Michaels = Vince Neil
Wynona Ryder = Lucas Haas
 
 
More will be added as I discover their alter-egos! 😛

SirJoey 

 

 
 
 
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Recently, I decided to re-paint my old aluminum-frame Raleigh bicycle. It’s a 1985, 12-speed road bike. A great old bike, & fairly high-tech back in the day, but pretty beat up, I decided I would paint & then re-build it as a giant 12-speed Sting-Ray, thus the name "StingRaycer". Inspired by an article posted on the "Instructables" website, I sat out on a journey that I ultimately found would be very difficult to complete, indeed!
 
Based on the author’s recommendation, I purchased a $9.00 can of "Jasco Paint & Epoxy Remover". Little did I realize that this would be only the first of many hard lessons that I would learn before my long & arduous journey would end! What follows is the series of articles that I posted on that same website, to warn others before they attempted this project, of the various pitfalls that may lie ahead, due largely to various EXPENSIVE, but LOW QUALITY products!
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POST #1:
To anyone thinking of undertaking this project, be forewarned. The "Jasco Paint & Epoxy Remover" doesn’t work on all types of paint! After 3 APPLICATIONS, my Raleigh still has about 25% of the paint left on it! TOTAL WASTED: $9.00!
 
I sanded on it today until my arms gave out & I’ve barely scratched the surface! It seems that the paint remover somehow reacted to the remaining paint, hardening it & making it even more difficult to sand off! This has turned into a nightmare of a project which will probably take a couple of hundred hours to complete!
 
I’m committed now, so I have no choice but to continue, but if I had known it would be like this, I never would have started it!
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POST #2:
Well, a couple of more days of work, MUCH sanding, & a total of 4 APPLICATIONS of the "Jasco Paint & Epoxy Remover", & I’ve FINALLY got the frame stripped & primered. Haven’t even started on the fork yet.
 
I’m trying out the Krylon X-Metals paint next. Kinda pricey too, at almost 5 bucks a can! With any luck, I’ll apply my base coat tomorrow. You’re supposed to apply the base coat over the primer, then the color paint within 1 hour, or wait 5 days! This stuff looks great on the cap, but who knows, eh? Stay tuned…
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POST #3:
Warning! Don’t buy the Krylon X-Metals paint! Another waste of money! Primer-$2.00, X-Metals base coat-$5.00, X-Metals paint-$5.00. TOTAL WASTED: $12.00!
 
Even after wet sanding the primer, allowing 24 hours drying time & following all directions exactly, the finish is equivalent to fine sandpaper! Very rough, no shine, uneven finish! And this stuff is SUPPOSED to have a vastly superior finish! In reality it’s VASTLY INFERIOR, but TWICE AS EXPENSIVE!!
 
Now I get to wait 5 days for the paint to cure (as recommended on the can), so I can wet sand it & go over it again with REGULAR paint, to get a decent, smooth, shiny finish. I’ve done MANY $4.00 paint jobs that came out MUCH, MUCH better! What a mess!
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Okay, I admit it. Maybe it’s crazy for an old guy like me to buy one of these things, but I just couldn’t help it. I’ve wanted one for a long time. Maybe I’m just re-living (or trying to re-capture) my childhood, but WOW, was that first ride ever fun! This thing makes me feel like a kid again!
 
I bought one of the 2006 Repros, & although a lot of people knock ’em, I love it! Yeah, it’s an imported knock-off of an American classic, but still…
 
The bike arrived in an opened, damaged box, but miraculously, it was in perfect condition with no missing parts. Although it required assembly, it was a snap on a simple bike like this! In less than an hour, I was on the road & grinning like the proverbial Cheshire cat!
 
Actually, the quality seems pretty decent to me. The welds look good, the metallic purple paint looks FANTASTIC & it rides just like the old originals. A very accurate reproduction, the only noticeable difference being the shape of the rear of the seat & the sissy bar.
 
The bike is actually a little too small for me, as you might guess, but it’s so much fun to ride, I don’t mind being a little cramped on it!
 
Like a lot of people, I owned several of the original Sting Rays when I was a kid, but they were all used. It’s nice after all these years, to FINALLY get that BRAND NEW ONE that I always wanted & never had! Sure, it may never be worth as much as a "real" one, but I’m having fun with it, & in the end, isn’t that what matters?
 
Joey Wallace
 

Review #1 – THE RHOADES CAR

 
 
Okay, let’s tackle this one first. Loads of fun, but pricey & heavy, the Rhoades Car is not for everyone. Weighing in at over 80 pounds (decked out), this baby is built like a tank! The good thing is, of course, it will haul a heck of a load & it’s not easily damaged, by any means.
 
I popped for most of the factory options & then added a few more myself. For me, the 36 speed drivetrain was a no-brainer. In low gear, this thing could climb a tree, but even with this great range of gears, it would take a world class athelete to get any real speed out of this thing on level ground! It’s really more about leisurely cruising & enjoying the ride. And of course, the exercise, and believe me, you’ll get plenty!
 
The top is a very nice option, too. Especially in a hot climate area like the southeast, where I live. Expensive, yes, but another "must have" for me.
 
I chose the Mag wheels (so they’re called), just ’cause I love the looks of them! On the functional side, I also sprang for the thorn-proof inner tubes & Kevlar liners. Once again, added weight, but worth it to me. I HATE FLATS! (Also got the spare, but I don’t carry it unless I’m planning a really long ride.)
 
The water-proof cargo box is another nice option. It’s huge & has a sliding tray inside, kind of like a truck tool box. Worth the extra money, in my opinion.
 
Surprisingly, the "Deluxe" seat doesn’t come with arm rests! Arm rests are an option on top of the "Deluxe Seat" option. Go figure. It is FANTASTICALLY COMFORTABLE though, & HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, making the Rhoades Car the most comfortable HPV that I personally have ever ridden!
 
I also opted for the heavy-duty bearings & the computer. After all, how can you ride without a computer?
 
Overall, the workmanship is first rate. The welds are beautiful, as is the powder coat paint. The components, for the most part are decent, but not great. In general, I’m fairly well satisfied with the Rhoades Car, however there were a few disappointments. Most notably was the ONE PIECE STEEL CRANKSET!!! For the life of me, I CAN’T BELIEVE they would use something like that on a machine in the 3 grand price range! COME ON! We’re talking about junk from the stone-age here! Even cheapo department store bikes come with 3 piece aluminum cranksets these days! Doesn’t leave a guy much room for an upgrade, either, unless you want to go hacking on the frame & then re-paint! NOT GOOD! This was a MAJOR DISAPPOINTMENT to me!  
 
Another area that definitely has room for improvement, is the conspicuous absence of braze-ons. None for a water bottle cage, tire pump, cables, or anything else! NONE AT ALL! All of the brake & drivetrain cables are zip-tied to the frame! I even had to zip-tie my (NOT INCLUDED) water bottle cage to the frame!  A few braze-ons would have eliminated all of these shabby-looking zip ties & cable housings, not to mention microscopically less weight & wind resistance.
 
Another disappointment was, to a much lesser degree, the bracket they use to hold the cargo box to the frame. Aluminum, yes, but a big funky-looking thing which protrudes beyond the back of the box, & looks like it was homemade or scrounged from a scrap pile. 
 
The nut on top of the steering column is a big, ugly castle nut! This is VERY noticeable & should have been topped off with a nice looking acorn nut instead. (Mag wheel style.)
 
The basic model only comes with a ONE WHEEL BRAKE, believe it or not. To get two wheel brakes, you have to pay extra, like I did. Another "must". On the plus side, however, both brake levers are lockable, so you basically have a pair of park brakes! VERY handy!
Options I added myself after the Rhoades Car arrived, include front & rear reflectors, wheel reflectors, custom valve caps, horn, mirror, headlight, 2 tail lights, handlebar pack, flag, water bottle cage, & a "Jesus Loves Me" license plate!
 
At around $3,000 (with the options I chose), the Rhoades Car is definitely not for everyone, & has lots of room for improvement, especially at that price! This behemoth is still a lot of fun though, & will definitely turn some heads, especially if you have it loaded with goodies, like I do!
 
Bottom line – if you wanna go fast, look elsewhere. However, if you want EXTREME COMFORT & STYLE in a well-built machine that still has room for improvement, & you don’t mind the price tag, then the Rhoades Car is for you! I’m glad I bought it…
 
Joey Wallace
 
 
The following is a letter I wrote some time back, regarding one of my more memorable shopping experiences…
 
 
To Whom It May Concern:
I would like to relate to you, a somewhat typical shopping experience at our local “Lowes” store. Recently, I decided to order four sheets of 4×8 vinyl privacy lattice. Arriving at Lowes, I proceeded to a check-out register, assuming this would be the logical place to order and pay for said merchandise.
After waiting through line #1, I arrived at the register, only to be told that she did not handle such transactions, and I must see the “man at the computer” at the commercial sales desk. After waiting through line #2, I arrived at the “man at the computer”, only to be told that he did not handle such transactions, and I must see “Danny” at the register. (Still at the commercial sales desk.) After waiting through line #3, I arrived at “Danny”, only to be told that he did not handle such transactions, and I must see the man at the regular check-out register. (Still at the commercial sales desk.) After waiting through line #4, I arrived at the register, only to be told that he did not handle such transactions, and I must see “Danny” at the same commercial sales desk. After waiting through line #5, (previously line #3) I arrived at “Danny”. (Again!) By now I was very frustrated and somewhat irate. I expressed to Danny, my extreme dissatisfaction with Lowes’ policy of dealing with a simple order. It was very obvious that none of the employees wanted to deal with placing the order for me, and that each one was simply trying to pawn the work off on the next one. Now, he was suddenly able to handle the transaction after all, my order was finally placed, I paid for it in advance, and my wonderful day at Lowes was over.
It would be well over two weeks before I would hear from Lowes, regarding the order that was supposed to arrive in ten days or less.
Arriving at Lowes, I proceeded to the information desk, assuming this would be the logical place to start. After waiting through line #1, I arrived at the information desk, and was told to proceed to the commercial sales check-out register. After waiting through line #2, I arrived at the commercial sales check-out register, some paper work was done, and I was told to proceed to the customer service (what a joke) desk, for a “pink slip”. After waiting through line #3, I arrived at the "service" desk, where I received my “pink slip”, and was told to proceed “out back” to pick up my merchandise. “Oh joy!” I thought, “Finally, the big moment is at hand!” Upon arriving “out back”, imagine my ultimate dismay, to discover that the lattice had been stored on a cart, ON EDGE, for several days, warping it beyond any possibility of use. The attendant agreed with me that it was totally unusable, and I was to return to “Danny” at the commercial sales desk. (See a pattern yet?) After waiting through line #5, I arrived at “Danny” again. At this time I requested a discount for all that I had been through, and the fact that said merchandise would now have to be re-ordered, with a subsequent 2-3 week wait. I was informed that I could have a discount on the damaged merchandise only. I informed Danny that the merchandise was unusable at ANY price. Still, my request for some type of compensation was flatly refused! Some paper work was done, and I was told to proceed to a regular check-out register, where a refund/rebuild would be performed. After waiting through line #6, (Yeah, I know, unbelievable!) I arrived at the register, where more paper work was done and I was merrily on my way!
In my opinion, events like this can only be attributed to very poor store management, however, due to this, and OTHER SIMILAR EXPERIENCES at Lowes, I have concluded that having my teeth drilled would be preferable to shopping at Lowes. I have come to absolutely DETEST shopping at Lowes, and only do so when it is absolutely unavoidable!
I am, needless to say, very eagerly anticipating my return to Lowes for another exquisitely supreme shopping experience, when my merchandise finally arrives for the second time. I can’t help but wonder how many lines I will have to wait through, and how long it will take THIS time!
 
Your faithful Lowes customer,
Joey Wallace