Wednesday, April 27, 2005


What is this bravery that we discuss? What does it really mean? What is courage?Is bravery that which propels you onward in a fight, or is bravery that stuff of legend that admits no fear and faces every situation with grim resolve, despite an apparent outcome?

I say that bravery is that sense of self that allows an individual the opportunity to make the right choice despite the actions of others. Bravery is making a stand for ones' beliefs in the face of ridicule, in the face of consequence and in the face of failure. Dangerous situations don't necessarily require bravery. Being brave doesn't mean not being afraid. Being brave means that an individual performs his/her mission for the sake of mission accomplishment; for the better of his/her peers. Did "Chesty" Puller's accomplishments make him a brave man? Or was he just executing missions to the best of his ability? Is it valiant to kill men in combat?

The ultimate in bravery to me is having the ability to refuse to go along with the crowd, standing tall for one's personal beliefs in the face of peer pressure. That being said, I am not a brave man. I don't like social situations so I avoid them. I don't really know when this started, but I am trying to change this.

My downstairs neighbor died this past Sunday. He had been in intensive care for about 30 days. His name was Bill and he was in his mid 70's. I guess alot of people would say that he lived a full life. Every time I saw him it always appeared to me that he felt he had a lot more life to live. His daughter told me about his situation when she was over checking in on his condo and his things. I sent my regards to him while he was in the hospital. I hope that helped to boost his spirits. When it snowed I always shoveled his car out and shoveled a walkway across the parking lot. I never told him that it was me that shoveled him out. One day he came out as I was shoveling and he asked me if I had been the mysterious shoveler, of course I said yes. He thanked me and we had a nice conversation after that.

Despite the sytematic failure of his body, he still remained strong willed and fought through his pneumonia and other ailments. When his family told him that he'd not be able to go back to his condo and live alone again, he lost his will to fight this last battle, a battle for his very life. Bill bravely accepted the fact that his self-directedness and independent life was at a close, and he chose not to live like that. That is bravery.

I hope that I don't cling onto the tendrils of life hoping against hope that my independence will return. I hope that I can make the brave choice.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

A dog's life for me...

Saturday, in the pouring rain I picked up Sophie. Sophie is a Pekingnese dog. She's 16 years old, fidgety, vocal, and very persnickety. She eats what she wants to eat, she does what she wants to do. She has howls, yowls, whines and barks. She is very full of herself when she alerts me to the fact that there's someone else in the room, or in the apartment or outside. There are times when she acts like a puppy, but most of the time she is the epitome of an old dog: she's mostly deaf, her joints ache, the one eye that she has left is clouded over and all she can see is shadow and movement.

This is practice, I think, for the new puppy that I'm getting. I'm learning to be a caretaker and a father. I was also told something kind of disturbing when I picked her up; I was told that if she "had a stroke or something else happened" not to allow the Vet to give her an MRI or perform any additional testing. I don't know. I just know that when she is over here, she acts like a puppy most of the time. The rest of the time she sleeps. She struts and prances when she's outside. Her vertigo makes it look a little awkward at times though. She has always been my vision of a tough little dog. She's never backed down from any challenge that I've ever seen.

I like to think that when she does go she'll end up back in the same pack that her brothers Shiloh and Sammy are in.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Oppression is...

Opression is trying to sleep when the ambient inside temperature is 87*F in your apartment. Opression is having 4 floor fans going full blast and still not being able to cool down the apartment. Oppression is when the air conditioning units are not turned on by the residents themselves but by a board of advisors that set an arbitrary date.

So that was my night last night. I didn't sleep much, maybe two hours, if even that. It was so hot that the cat didn't get on the bed, she slept on the floor. Around 3am I went to go into the living room, where it was a bit cooler. I've slept on the couch out there before and to be honest, it's quite pleasant. My roommate beat me to it. I could have squeezed in on the love-seat but that would have been quite uncomfortable.

Sure, sure, there are worse things in life than having a hot house, but having a hot house is still a very oppressive thing. I've never been able to sleep in a hot house. In the summer I turn my air conditioning down to about 67* or 68*F. If I thought it would be reasonable I'd turn it down to 50*F. I like it cold, not unbearable cold, just cold enough so that I'd have to wear a blanket when I'm lounging around the house.

I hope that the "powers that be" will turn on the A/C soon.

Monday, April 18, 2005

When I'm Bored...

When I'm bored I like to read and I also like to write. Sometimes I just start writing (like now) and I'm not sure where the words will take me. I'm not really sure in which direction I will ramble. Since my interests are so diverse and so eclectic I could begin to ramble about anything.

I think I have some sort of a computer virus on my home PC. My Norton Utilities hasn't caught it, nor has my Windows Firewall. Luckily for me, I don't store any sensitive information on my computer, well I do store passwords but since I do not have unlimited access to all of my accounts online these passwords will only allow a very little amount of damage to occur. The reason why I think that I might have a virus, or at the very least a snooping hacker are these: My AOL Instant Messenger is constantly crashing; my computer has been renamed and my computer has crashed 3 times in the last 24 hours, with minimum programs running. Oh and I still get popups from sex sites even though I have CyberSitter installed on my computer.

My AIM has been acting strangely for the last few weeks. I'll be having a conversation and the window will say " is typing" but no words ever get sent to my window. Also when I send messages they will appear with weird blank spaces randomly typed. It is almost as if I am being censored. (This also appears to a lesser extent with my blog entries.) Perhaps I am being filtered by this CyberSitter program?

As everyone that has a machine knows, when one first purchases and boots up a computer a prompt appears in which you have an option to name your computer, most people will choose names like "Home" or "Office." I chose the name "Abulafia" which is from an Umberto Eco novel. This morning I looked at it and now my computer has been renamed "Mysterious." Quite interesting, if you think about it. In order to rename the computer this person had to have incredible and complete administrative access.

Several times during the past 24-36 hours my computer has crashed mysteriously, rebooting from scratch, and each time after the reboot it tells me that "Windows has recovered from a serious error." I'm not sure if it's related but other programs have shut down automatically (with no prompt or command or click) from me. Perhaps this is some hacker showing me that he can remotely turn on and off whatever programs I have running. Perhaps it is some "piggy-backed" software that is riding the "Mysterious" stream of electrons in cyberspace. I wish I knew.

Oh yeah and pop-ups. Goodnight! If I am surfing for a period of more than 5 minutes at a time, I get popups for sexsites (no pictures just a URL and a "File can not be found" icon) and it's quite annoying. It's a big concern of mine because I sweep for spyware and adware on a daily basis. I search the registry, the internet cookies, running processes and programs and everything else I can possibly think of.

I don't know what to do, other than totally disconnect my PC from the cable modem and/or take a shotgun to it. (Which is a problem since I cannot legally discharge a firearm in my county outside of a gunrange.)

Friday, April 15, 2005


What makes us tick? Why do we do the things that we do and what encourages us to do so?

In the simplest terms man is no more than an omnivorous primate. We have combination teeth which provide for tearing meat and crushing vegetables. We have an opposible thumb. But what sets us apart, is ambition and foresight. Some might argue that logic or higher brain function sets us apart from the rest of the animals. I don't disagree with this but I feel that logic and higher brain function is an offshoot of ambition and foresight. But this blog is not to argue that point. This blog is meant to examine some of the reasons that I do what I do...

I am driven by myself to be the best that I can be in whichever endeavor that I pursue. If I can give my all to one particular task, and I am not the best at it, I am fine with it. However, if I do not give my all and I am bested by another. It took me a very long time to be satisfied with not being the best at everything that I do. But my compulsive behavior does not allow me to be satisfied with an effort of less than 100%. In my work I want to be the absolute best, I want to be the "gold standard" by which others are measured.

I currently work in a Body Shop Parts Office, which I manage. In the last 7 months since I have taken over, my return percentage to other vendors has dropped, my sales have increased and the overall productivity of my bodyshop has been raised. The frustration of the Body Shop Management with the Parts Department is the lowest that it has ever been since I've been employed at this dealership. My success is due to several factors, among them is the fact that Charlie, my coworker, is a master at organization and the development of processes. We operate on the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) principle. We also operate on a fairly strict separation of duties. Both of us are goal oriented and driven to succeed. Our operation in the Body Shop has been noticed and for certain insurance company repair programs we are #1 in our respective region. Our success has been noted by the rest of the parts department, and some of them want to defect to my department. This is notable since the legend or shall I say spectre of doom surrounding the body shop was quite ominous.

But why am I driven to work hard at a task for which I never wanted? The financials are nice, to be sure, but there is something more. I never want to fail a task and have someone say "The truth is that you never really tried."

I played roller hockey for the past 10 years. I'm not big, I'm not that skilled, my hands aren't that soft and I don't have many moves. The niche that I fit in is one of a hard working defensive forward that is strong along the boards. I viewed my role as one of giving the skilled players a breather, drawing a few penalties and doing the dirty work that no one else wanted to do. I'm good for a goal or two or four a season but not much more. I'm also a good teacher/coach of the game. I never liked leaving a game knowing that I didn't give everything I had to help my team. Some games the best thing I could do was to take very short shifts and get the skill guys out there as much as possible. To be honest, I love my playing time, but I can certainly accept the fact that my best, isn't THE best, it's only what I can offer. In my playing time I learned alot about the game, yet there is so much more to learn. And that learning is what I obsess about.

I have always had a thirst for knowledge. I remember being a small child, a toddler in fact, possibly around 2 years old, observing my father reading a book. I kept thinking that whatever he is doing it must be important; It must be more important to him than me. (After he I found out that was true.) I wanted to know what was in those books. What was it that held him captivated so many nights, for so much time. I then taught myself to read at a young age. I'm pretty sure the reason I started reading was to find my father. I was hoping to find him trapped in one of the pages and he'd come to life in my mind. Maybe I'm just grasping here, I don't know. But I was driven by knowledge then and I'm driven by it now.

That's enough of me for now, for someone that s himself so much, I do alot of talking about myself.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

I just took another test...

Libertarian or Proletariat?

Being a Libertarian has it's advantages, I must say. Just the fact that my "party" realizes that people are different on an individual basis makes me feel welcomed. While many people consider the libertarians as extremist, the truth is that their views are quite parallel with the majority of the US populus. Interestingly enough a comic strip "Beetle Bailey" keyed in on these ideals.

That's my quick note for today. I am working on an official entry which should be posted by the late afternoon.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

The world is going to the dogs

I know that a large percentage of my recent posts were dedicated to animal companions. There is a reason for this: I am soon to be the proud owner of a new puppy. As far as I know the puppy isn't born yet. I am purchasing a Pharaoh Hound . (I wish I knew how to make these links work so I wouldn't have to show the whole URL.)

I was watching one of the dog shows on television a few months ago and I thought that this dog was statuesque. I started doing research about them and discovered that, indeed, the dog should make a good companion and fit in with my lifestyle. So I started inquiring and put a deposit down on a puppy that had not even been conceived.

I'm getting very excited at this point, as the due date for the expectant mother is now past. I hope that she had an easy time at birthing and that her and the pups are ok. As I have not yet heard from the breeder, I am resting a bit uneasy. The amazing thing is the amount of support I have received from friends and family. This is one way, I'm guessing, for me to get out to the mountains and go on hikes, take long leisurely walks, and possibly even get involved in other canine activities such as lure coursing, obedience and agility.

Pharaoh hounds are good hunters, and though they are considered "sight hounds" they also use their noses more than other sighhound breeds. They are particularly athletic when outside of the house but somehow know that it's ok to be a "couch potato" when inside.

My biggest concern is that my cat, who is very co-dependent, will begin to hate me for adding a loud, large (60lb,) drooling sycophant canine into the household. I know that I will lose a bit of the camaraderie I have with her, yet I cannot help but think it would add a bit more variety to her otherwise mundane and banal life. (The biggest excitement for her now is when the pizza guy comes to the door-and all she does is look for the quickest place to hide.)

So there is my reason for the canine posts.

Monday, April 11, 2005

The information super-highway

The internet, cable television, satellite radio, satellite TV, cell phones; all are part of the information superhighway. They feed information to you at a moment's notice. They can reach you in the privacy of your automobile, your workplace, or they can interrupt the sanctity of the daily bowel movement.

I find it strange that we need to have information in such a rapid manner. I don't really remember how slowly information traveled in the 70's, or the 80's. I am not sure that it had much of an affect upon my life. Stores weren't open 24 hours. Most television stations weren't on air for 24 hours.

Now we get spoonfed information, and we get, for the most part, all similar information from similar sources. The biases are the same, the conclusions and the verbiage. Everything is dumbed down so much that we are not allowed the liberty of thinking. Reason has left humankind. Again we are told which clothing is best to wear, which vitamins we should take, which drugs will help us live full, meaningful lives and which products will make us smell better, look better and be more appealing to whichever sex we are trying to attract. We have become a society of somnambulists.

Creativity and originality are leaving, wave goodbye as we watch them sail away. Our voyage is no longer into the unknown, our voyage is into the known. We are being told what to think, how to think it, how to express it and how to feel fulfillment from it. We are medicated, placated, relaxated, and artificially stimulated. Our food is modified, sterilized, preserved codified, homogenized, pasteurized and freeze-dried. The films we watch (US made only) explain every detail to us and always end with certain resolution. The good guy always wins. But the good guys often times do bad things to accomplish the greater good. We revere the Rambos out there. Not because they do the right thing, but because they take on greater odds. We are taught that greatness means doing great things for great recognition. Not that greatness sparks from doing the right thing no matter who is nearby or peering over our shoulders. Greatness starts with doing the right thing, regardless. We are taught that people will like us because of what we wear, or what we smell like. Not so.

I'm sorry that the world has turned this way. I'm sorry that we feel that modernization and information is a prerequisite for happiness. I'm sorry because I can see that the future of our world will be dictated by those few who will be the self-appointed leaders of the "free-world" and the rest of the populus will be mindless drones that do their bidding. I'm sorry that the world is being hypnotized by a pop culture that even Warhol could not imagine. I'm sorry that the blackness spreading over our lives is dimming even the very hope which we cling to in our hours of need.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

I was asked about customers...

Since I was asked to report on customers at my workplace I shall do so on this post. But be aware that this is only a preliminary glimpse into the life of a parts-guy.

To most of you readers, going to the dealership to get your parts means a trip into the heavily trafficked part of town, hustling to find parking, being greeted by all manners of sales staff who would rather you purchase a new car rather than fix your current model. And that's even before you arrive at the Parts Department.

I must make a quick aside here prior to mentioning the interaction between parts-guy and customer. There are three different types of parts guys that I have run into. There is the guy that is working the counter because he is unable to find a better job- either because he is uneducated, lazy or otherwise unwilling to search for a job; there is the guy that sells parts because it pays well, he's good at customer service and the job seemed pretty easy; and there is the true parts guy: a guy that understands automotive systems, and can explain those systems in either a technical or a lay-person manner, he loves what he does and is incredibly intelligent and dilligent in his search for that "impossible to find" grommet for the rain-gutter drain tube in your 1983 Ford Fairmont that you don't want to sell because that car "has memories" (which are of course rusty and have since been painted over.) Usually these guys are not "public" friendly and they only end up working the front counter during lunch breaks and on Saturdays.

With that preface let me tell you the story of a good customer transaction; The customer comes is and has either a registration or a copy of his/her VIN, knows the general location of the part, possibly even the nomenclature, or has driven the car into the dealership to show the parts-guy. The Customer knows all pertinent information relating to his question. This is not often the case.

As a parts department representative, I do not set prices. I am not responsible for what the manufacturer uses as a "list" price. I know that I am in business to make money, yet I will not deliberately add to this list price. I give discounts to senior citizens, members of the military, and others, case dependent I assure you. If you walk in and are looking for a thousand dollar accessory for your $60,000 Navigator, I will not give you a discount. As my co-worker likes to say "that's sway. 'S-way it goes."

On to the stories: A customer comes in holding a broken piece of metal. The metal bar is bent and broken, it fell off the car he says. No, I don't know from where it fell off. Well maybe the back of the car. Fifteen minutes of questioning goes by. The piece is finally discovered, after a trip to the vehicle: A trunk lid retaining spring. Fourteen dollars later the guy is back on the road, part in hand.

I was standing at the counter one day and this older gentleman enters and asks me if I work there. I glance down at the uniform that I wear and look at the company logo. "Why yes, yes I do. How can I help you?"

"I need a bolt for my engine."

"Which bolt?" I reply.

"I don't know, but it's about this big." He opens his fingers to indicate a bolt about 2-2 1/2 inches long. "Do you have paper and a pen?"

I hand him a piece of scratch paper, hoping that he's going to possibly show me which part of the engine this bolt came from. I glance down at his doodling. He's drawn me a poor illustration of a bolt.

"Sir, I know what a bolt looks like. What part of the engine did it come from?"

"I don't know."

"How can I help you find the bolt if you don't know where it came from?" I ask, clearly getting frustrated.

"I drew you a picture."

"Sir, is there any chance that your drawing is exactly to scale?" It wasn't, I knew that. It wasn't even close. It was the crudest drawing of a bolt I've ever seen.

"No, I was just showing you what the bolt looked like."

"I know what a bolt looks like. If you can't tell me where it came from in the engine I won't even know how to start looking this up."

"Why not? Can't you just type in bolt and it will come up?"

"No sir, I need to know where to start. You have to help me help you here." I snapped at him.

"Well it's obvious I'm getting nowhere with you. Where's the other guy that works here?" He shot back at me.

Luckily my colleague was at lunch and the guy left without speaking to him.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005


I recieved a printed version of this email, thought I would share it with everyone...

As seen in a dog's diary:

8am-oh boy! Dog food! My favorite!!
9am-oh boy! A car ride! My favorite!!
10am- oh boy a walk! My favorite!!
11am Oh boy! A car ride! My favorite!!
Noon- Oh boy! The kids My favorite!!
1pm-Oh boy! The yard!! My favorite!!
2pm-Oh boy! the kids! My favorite!!
4pm-Oh boy Dog food! My favorite!!
5pm-Oh boy! MOM!!!! My favorite!!
6pm- Oh boy!! DAD!!! My favorite!!
7pm-Oh boy!! A tennis ball!! My favorite!!

As seen in a cat's diary:

Day 183 of my captivity...
My captors continue to taunt me with bizarre little dangling objects. They dine on fresh meat, while I am forced to eat dry cereal. The only thing that keeps me going is the hope of escape, and the mild satisfaction I get from ruining the occasional piece of furniture. Tomorrow I may eat another house plant. Today my attempt to kill my captors by weaving around their feet while they were walking almost succeeded--must try this at the top of the stairs.

In an attempt to disgust and repulse these vile oppressors, I once again induced myself to vomit on their favorite chair--must try this again on their bed. I decapitated a mouse and brought them the headless body, in an attempt to make them aware of my capabilities and to strike fear into their hearts. They only cooed and condescended about what a good little cat I was. Mmmmm, not working according to plan.

There was some sort of gathering of their accomplices this evening. I was placed in solitary throughout the event however, I could only hear the noise and smell the food. More importantly I overheard that my confinement was due to MY power of "allergies." I must learn what this is and how to use it more to my advantage. I am convinced the other captives are flunkies, and maybe even snitches. The dog is routinely released and seems more than happy to return. He is obviously a half-wit. The bird on the other hand has got to be an informant, and speaks with them regularly. I am certain he reports my every move. Due to his current placement in the metal room, his safety is assured. But I can wait, it is only a matter of time...

-author unknown

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Win or lose it's all the same

Realization is key. Experience earned and learned gleans wisdom.

The circumstances of our individual lives are often pondered and remembered with feelings of fondness or feelings of hurt. Should we discount the good things in our lives that have ended just because the cycles were completed? I am mainly speaking about the sense of warmth, love and companionship that one receives from being owned by a pet. Whether a dog, cat, ferret, mouse, bird or some other type of pet. Pets enrich our lives. On a cold day they snuggle up to us and share their warmth. On a bad day they sympathize with us and make us feel appreciated and wanted. On a good day they share with us the joi de vivre that they inherently possess.

Perhaps it is because their lives are much shorter than ours that they seem to be willing to live in the moment. The simple act of chasing a squirrel may distract them from their companionship, but they chase with such a fervor that we cannot help but enjoy ourselves too. It seems though that when we think of the pets which have owned our hearts that our longest lasting memories are also the saddest ones. We move on slowly afterwards and say "never again." These resolutions hardly ever last, of course, finding us somewhere down the road contemplating the emergence of a new cross-species friendship.

It is hard to think that in my life I have known the companionship and trust of many dogs. It makes me feel old, actually. There is a dog lying on my bed right now that is rapidly aproaching her 16th year of life. Those of you that have read my blog know that I am speaking of Sophie, my parents' pekingnese dog. I am dog-sitting this weekend and will be again at the end of this month. She is old and tired most of the time. She is mostly deaf and her one remaining eye is cloudy so she sees only opaque shapes and shadows. Amazingly enough she still has that very same joi-de-vive which I spoke of earlier. She howls when I come home from work, she swells with pride when she has alerted me to the presence of some stranger and she still loves to play with a tennis ball.

In her younger years she was as fierce a dog as I have ever seen. She would fight her "brother" (a blond peke named "sammy") over something as simple as "the look." Her brother Shiloh, a Japanes Akita, was not immune to the danger either as I have seen her attack him over a semi buried dog biscuit. She lost both of them and yet she still remains. Often I wonder what her thinking process says about the loss of her "pack." Does she know that they died? Does she miss them? At this point, does she even remember them?

Shiloh was put to sleep due to stomach torsion or bloat. The last time I saw him was one of my favorite memories of him. It was in the late December, a crisp, cold day. The trees were bare and the ground was covered with brown leaves that crinkled underfoot as we walked down the wooded trail. The smell of musty drying leaves hung in the air as a reminder that winter was in full stide. We plodded down the trail, my Mother, the three dogs and I. Shiloh was a bit arthritic then, and his vision was failing, as was his hearing. Off to the left we all heard a clatter and we turned to see two majestic white tailed deer hopping away from us in that characteristic hop- leap that whitetails have. Shiloh didn't see them, but he certainly smelt them and felt the excitement as it traveled down the lead to him. His syes were alert, his ears erect and his muscles tensed as if he were ready for the chase. Off to the right we heard another clatter, four more white tailed does were in full alert running through the back yards of the houses uphill from the trail. Shiloh saw the movement but was unsure what it was.

That's the way I choose to remember this amazing dog. Alert, poised and ready. At home on the hunt and always between his family and danger. Akitas are like that. They boldly face any and every threat to their family and willingly fight to protect their pack. They are incredibly fearless and are devoted, intuitive family members. When I think of him I think of his intelligence, strength, size and also his lifelong search for the perfect place to poop. (Anytime we went on a walk he would spend anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes seeking out the perfect place. Sometimes he would get as far as going into the squat and decide to move on. I'll never know why, but I'll always remember it with a smile.)

The message of this particular entry is: Remember the good times people. There are too few honest and good moments in this life to forget them. Learn the lessons of life from pets: Live each day to it's fullest extent, be loyal to your family and there is always a better place to poop than the one you've just found.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Angle of Attack

In aviation there is a term called "angle of attack." This literally means the angle or attitude that an aircraft has with respect to the ground. The nose can be pitched up (a high angle of attack) or pitched level (a low angle of attack) or, I assume the nose can be pitched down (a negative angle of attack?.) But what does this have to do with life in general?

In life we are often beset by various problems, concerns and challenges. It is up to us to learn how to confront and deal with these issues. So we need to decide how we will confront them. Sometimes, it seems, that to confront the issues head-on is appropriate; sometimes sidelong is better, and sometimes it is necessary to call in for reinforcements and plan an alternate method all together.

I call this process "deciding the angle of attack."

I can think of lots of processes that we, as humans, go through in which we need to decide an appropriate course of action. Mechanical action is one example. Sometimes it is best to use a different angle to maximize our torque. Sometimes our opposable thumbs get in the way. Different situations require different strategies.

I quit drinking alcohol in March of 1993. I haven't tasted a drop of alcohol since then. (Well there was a rum cake incident that left me feeling ill.) That was a problem that I confronted head-on. I conquered my alcoholism and have since moved on. I find that other problems in my life are not so easy to conquer. I have a compulsivity/ addiction problem. I find one thing and become so fixated upon it that all else falls to the wayside. To conquer one addiction it seems that I add another. My addiction to tobacco, for instance. I've tried many times to quit, all of them were unsuccessful. I tried the nicotine gum. Disgusting, and it made me jumpy. My isolationism is another addiction. I prefer to be alone. Sometimes so much so that in my solitude I am irritated by the mere suggestion of socialization.

I guess what I am saying is that in order for me to confront and conquer these problems I can't just sit and think about them. I need to choose an angle of attack and close in on them. If that angle of attack fails, I'll reset my angle of attack and go at it again. Seems like a lot of work when you think about it, but there is no other way to solve a problem than to take action against it.