I've been a gadget guy for a long time. From the functional to the downright silly, I've always liked how technology can enhance our lives.
We've come a long way in technology since the Reagan years. Back then, I never thought I'd have the equivalent of a Star Trek communicator in my pocket. Even though I love being able to have hundreds of songs to play on my phone, I will always have a special spot on my heart for my very first boombox.
Cnet has put together a list of the hot tech of 1987. Some live on in a fashion, like lazer tag (at Chickasha's own Zippety's), and some are long gone. There are even a couple of items I didn't know existed thirty years ago.
It's "Organize Your Files Week". If your documents, papers, and other papers are in need of some discipline, consider these quick checklists from Eileen Roth, the author of "Organziing For Dummies".
Use W-A-S-T-E to decide whether something's worth keeping:
W -- Worthwhile. If the item isn't worth saving, toss it. If it is, move on to the next four questions.
A -- Again. Will you use this item more than once?
S -- Somewhere else. Can you find it somewhere else or borrow it if you need it?
T -- Toss. Will anything happen if you throw it out? If you need it for tax or legal reasons, for example, keep it.
E -- Entire. Do you need the whole thing, the complete catalog, for example, when you only want to order from one page? If not, keep what you need and toss the rest.
Use R-E-M-O-V-E to clear off your desk:
R -- Reduce all the distractions on your desktop, such as knickknacks or this morning's mail. Put them on top of a file cabinet or bookcase instead.
E -- Everyday use. Only keep things you use often on top of your desk.
M -- Move items to the preferred side, whether you're a "righty" or "lefty." Put the phones, pens, pencils and pads within easy reach. Put the telephone on the opposite side so you can write with your preferred hand.
O -- Organize like items together so you can find them easily.
V -- View your time. Keep an organizer and clock on your desk.
E -- Empty the center. Clear off space in the middle of your desk so you can work on the project at hand.
Use R-A-P-I-D Response to sort mail and create stacks for each category:
R -- Read. Magazines, newsletters, etc.
A -- Attend. Notices and invitations for seminars, workshops, meetings.
P -- Pay. Bills.
I -- Important. All unknown incoming mail that needs sorting.
Remember the old game of adding the phrase "in bed" to the end of fortune cookies? I propose, in keeping with the times, we change it to "in protest". For example, here's how the fortune I got with lunch yesterday would read...
"When you need them, you will be surrounded with friends...in protest".
Others, generated at random from another website:
"See the light at the end of the tunnel...in protest"
"You create your own stage. The audience is waiting...in protest"
"You love peace...in protest".
I'm sure some of you won't think this is funny, so I'll end this train of thought...in protest.
The wave of suicides in Anadarko breaks my heart. I've seen posts here on FB that seek to take advantage of the news to push their agendas and hurl vitriol at what they perceive to be the causes. I won't do that; I don't know what drove these young people to take their own lives. I'm also certain the answer is more complex than simply blaming a political party or socio-economic status.
All I will say is...I understand. I've been to the brink of that abyss. I thought the darkness that beckoned would be so much better than the crushing, perpetual anguish that bored into my soul. But it is, as Andarko Police Chief Jason Smith said, a permanent fix to a temporary problem.
If you ever find yourself at that brink, please...step back. Call a family member or a close friend. At the very least, call 1-800-273-TALK(8255). Please.
If you're a fan of our Facebook page, you may have noticed a change in our name. Instead of the generic "Classic Hits", we're owning our name loud and proud. You don't have to like us again; as Bon Jovi sang, "It's all the same...only the names have changed". You'll still get our posts. (And if you're not a fan of our page, you can fix that problem right now.)
There's also a second, brand new page. It's Don Collett Radio, and as you can probably guess from the incredibly clever title, it's the page for my radio show. I would have used a cooler name, but "George Plummer" was already taken.
Why Don Collett Radio? Well, a lot of you have been sending friend requests to my personal profile on Facebook. That's the page where I keep in touch with family and close friends. Instead of mixing up my private and public life (and we all know how painful that can be for a guy over 40), I have a new page you can follow if you want. I hope you will. I think we'll have fun.
Happy Star Wars Day! Just in case you don't have a Star Wars fan in your life (which is an uncommon occurence these days), it's an unofficial celebration by fans of the Star Wars movies, books, TV shows and characters. May 4th was chosen because it's a play on words on the famous line, "May the Force (Fourth) be with you".
I've been a fan since I was a little knee-high DJ. I never got to see the first film in theatres. I read the Marvel Comics adaptation and I was hooked. By the time I got to see "The Empire Strikes Back", I was a fan for life. You can imagine how excited I was to hear that new films were coming, especially after seeing this trailer.
It's Han Solo! HAN SOLO!!!! I saw the last two seconds of that trailer, and it took me beack to being 12 years old, scarfing popcorn and keeping my eyes glued to the screen for 90 minutes of wonder, fun and excitement.
Some still say Star Wars, and stories like it, are kid stuff. Some of it is. However, I view Star Wars as part of our modern mythology, like Star Trek, Harry Potter and the seemingly never-ending stream of superheroes. In a world that seems like it's getting worse all the time, we need an escape sometimes. We need a reminder that it can be possible to triumph over apparently hopeless odds.
More than ever, we need heroes.
May the Fourth be with you.
(P.S. "Star Wars" also gave us this. It's one of my guilty pleasure songs.)
"Avengers: Age of Ultron", starring Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo, and Scarlett Johansson. The PG-13 movie is now showing at Heritage Park Theatre in Chickasha.
This movie picks up where "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" left off . . . with the Avengers taking down a hidden HYDRA base where the bad guys had been experimenting with alien artifacts and working on developing artificial intelligence.
Tony Stark decides to adapt that research for an A.I. he created to protect the world . . . but after Ultron becomes self-aware, it decides that WE'RE the problem, and the only way to restore peace is to exterminate us. James Spader IS Ultron.
Elizabeth Olsen and Aaron-Taylor Johnson join the cast as Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver. You may remember them from the end credits of "The Winter Soldier". They're twins who were given the power of magic and super speed from Loki's scepter.
Elizabeth Olsen uses her powers to manipulate people's minds, which is why Iron Man and Hulk are fighting each other in the Hulkbuster clip everyone's excited about.
And until now, Paul Bettany has only been the voice of J.A.R.V.I.S., but in this one he also gets to play the android Vision, who's created by Ultron but ends up on our side. (Watch him discuss motion capture with James Spader here.)
On the cameo front, Stan Lee is back for his normal comedic turn, Anthony Mackie appears as the Falcon, and Don Cheadle is back as War Machine in the scene where everyone tries and fails to lift Thor's hammer.
This is Joss Whedon's last "Avengers" movie. He's going out on top though. "Age of Ultron" will be showing on nearly 4,300 screens in the U.S. this weekend. And it's made $255 million in its first week overseas, which means it's turning a profit. But can it keep up the momentum? After all, the first movie "only" made $207 million in its opening week in the states. And it went on to become the third highest grossing movie of all time. "The Avengers" raked in $1.5 BILLION by the time it was done.
The next two "Avengers" movies will be directed by brothers Anthony and Joe Russo, who did last year's "The Winter Soldier" and next year's "Captain America: Civil War". But you'll have to wait THREE YEARS for "Infinity War: Part I". There are six Marvel movies between now and then, including "Ant-Man", "Doctor Strange", a new Spider-Man reboot, and sequels for "Captain America" and "Guardians of the Galaxy".
One last thing . . . don't be that guy sitting in the dark waiting for the end of the credits. The director says there's no bonus scene this time. You'll be able to watch the "tag" scene linking this one to the next movie at the start of the credits . . . then you can go.
I got into a converstation today on the Facebook group "*Chickasha, Ok* Buy Sell or Trade or info around the area" when someone asked if there were specific local Facebook groups where people facing hard times could find help. The BST has those types of posts, but with many people also placing their items for sale or trade, they can get lost in the shuffle.
The local Facebook community stepped up with some links to pages specifically created to help Grady County people down on their luck. I'm happy to share those with you here.
If you're needing some help, financially or otherwise, visit these pages. There are a lot of good people in our county that may be able to give you a hand.
I'd like to know if there are similar pages for other communities and counties in our listening area. If you have that information, share it on the comments below. Times can be hard, but pulling together can make them a little easier.
I was part of a small audience Thursday night who saw a sneak preview of this weekend's Chickasha Community Theatre dinner theatre production, "The Dixie Swim Club".
The play follows five decades in the lives of a women's college swim club team and their summer weekend meetings at a cottage on the Carolina shores. Together, they share laughs and heartache, good times and bad.
Before you think "Oh, great, a 'chick play'", think again. This is a sometimes funny, sometimes sad, and always heartwarming presentation about being human and the highs and lows that come with that experience.
The cast includes Christy Clift, Lezlie Hollowell, Carolyn Howard, Kristy Jarnigan, and Maurie O'Neal. Two of them have never performed in a stage production before. I won't tell you which because it doesn't matter. All of them bring their characters to life very well. The conversations sound like the ones we have with our friends, with all the odd pauses and talking over each other. I was drawn to their stories, and I was a bit sad when it was all over. These characters are people I would like to know in real life, flaws and all.
Kudos should also be given to director Dillon Pierce, who took challenge of presenting a play in an unorthodox venue (the local Masonic Lodge) and putting together a stage where the viewers can see all that's going on no matter where you sit.
"The Dixie Swim Club" runs today and tomorrow (April 24 and 25) and also May 1 and 2 p.m. at the Masonic Lodge. Dinner begins at 6 p.m., and the show starts at 7 p.m. Tickets for the Friday shows have been sold out, but there is still a limited supply for the Saturday night performances. They are available from Jay's Jewelry at 4th and Chickasha Avenue.
How good is "The Dixie Swim Club"? My son went with me last night to watch. He's not one to repeat watching plays or movies. When it was over, he said, "I'm going to need a ticket for Saturday night. I need to see this again."
Friday's here, and that means new movies! Here are the new releases you can find this weekend in Chickasha.
First: "Insurgent". In this sequel to "Divergent", Tris must confront her inner demons and continue her fight against a powerful alliance which threatens to tear her society apart with the help from others on her side.
Also out this weekend, is "The Gunman", starring Sean Penn and Idris Elba. A former Special Forces soldier and military contractor suffering from PTSD tries to reconnect with his long time love, but first must go on the run from London to Barcelona and across Europe in order to clear his name.
I hit me a few days ago...in just a few months, my youngest will graduate from high school. The baby boy is a young man now. I don't know if he'll leave the house any time soon, but he doesn't need me the same way that he did when he was learning to walk and talk and say the words "We'll be right back!" Someday, though, he will leave to take on the world on his own.
Where did all that time go?
Today, while I was wondering that, I came across this poem. If you've already been there and done that, you'll get it. If you're there now, you'll understand. If you're still parenting young ones and wonder how you'll ever survive...read this. Time is precious. Enjoy every moment you can.
The Last Time
From the moment you hold your baby in your arms,
you will never be the same.
You might long for the person you were before,
When you have freedom and time,
And nothing in particular to worry about.
You will know tiredness like you never knew it before,
And days will run into days that are exactly the same,
Full of feedings and burping,
Nappy changes and crying,
Whining and fighting,
Naps or a lack of naps,
It might seem like a never-ending cycle.
But don’t forget …
There is a last time for everything.
There will come a time when you will feed
your baby for the very last time.
They will fall asleep on you after a long day
And it will be the last time you ever hold your sleeping child.
One day you will carry them on your hip then set them down,
And never pick them up that way again.
You will scrub their hair in the bath one night
And from that day on they will want to bathe alone.
They will hold your hand to cross the road,
Then never reach for it again.
They will creep into your room at midnight for cuddles,
And it will be the last night you ever wake to this.
One afternoon you will sing “the wheels on the bus”
and do all the actions,
Then never sing them that song again.
They will kiss you goodbye at the school gate,
The next day they will ask to walk to the gate alone.
You will read a final bedtime story and wipe your last dirty face.
They will run to you with arms raised for the very last time.
The thing is, you won’t even know it’s the last time
Until there are no more times.
And even then, it will take you a while to realize.
So while you are living in these times,
remember there are only so many of them
and when they are gone, you will yearn for just one more day of them.
Some of you know I like to sing. If you've been out at karaoke any given weekend, chances are you'll find me there. One of the things on my bucket list is singing the National Anthem at a sporting event. No one's ever asked me, though, so that hasn't yet been checked off...but it may be soon.
I've been selected to audition for the Oklahoma City Dodgers baseball team's National Anthem singers. Now, getting to sing "The Star Spangled Banner" at an event is cool...but at a baseball game? That's just about perfect.
My audition is March 21st. I'll let you know if I'm chosen, and at what game I'll be singing, as soon as I find out.
Then, after that, I'll move on to the next item on my bucket list...marrying Kate Upton.
That one may be a WEE bit more difficult to accomplish.