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Saturday, September 28, 2013

Classic KW Cabover Labor of Love for California Port Trucker

David Sosa worked 10 hours a day for seven weeks to combine a
K100 cab and a wrecked KW T660 into a clean-emissions
repowered classic cabover.
Story thanks to Deborah Lockridge | Posted @ Friday, September 6, 2013 12:00 AM of Link provided below:

Some truckers still have a love affair with the cabover, that staple of the '70s highway and shows like BJ and the Bear. I know one fellow trucking reporter (and a former owner-operator) who has been trying to find one to buy for a reasonable price and regales us with stories of misadventures on eBay.
California port trucker David Sosa recently shared with me his story of saving a beautiful Kenworth K 100E cab from the recycler and updating it with a Cummins ISX EPA '07 engine.
Originally this truck was a wrecked 2009 Kenworth T660, which he bought for the engine to help him meet strict emissions regulations at the port. When he was looking for a cab to mate with it, he found the K100 cab nearby for only $1,000.
"I lost my father in August of 2012, and I prayed to him and promised him that I would convert the T660 into a cabover to revive memories of the 1970s when my dad used to have one like that," Sosa says.
Sosa spent $3,500 on the cab and about $1,000 on a
wrecked T660 with a Cummins ISX.
Sosa worked on it for 10 hours a day for seven weeks.
The cab, bought in a junkyard, included the radiator, water, air to air cooler, front axle, battery box, two tanks, cable shifting, and air filter, and half chassis. The deal included the box of batteries, pedestal mufflers, two diesel tanks and an air filter, for $3,500.
He took delivery of the K100 cab around Christmas last year, then spent the next nearly two months working on his masterpiece. He took the engine and transmission out of the T660, then cut it leaving the rear ends and welded it together with the K100 to make a 230-inch wheelbase.
The engine did not fit well, so he had to make modifications to crossmembers, engine mounts and oil pan. He also had to find a fan that fit, installed the DPF and designed and drilled 32 holes to modify all the crossmembers including the diesel tanks.
He left the pedestal mufflers for decoration, but the diesel particulate filter is connected to the bottom in the middle of the tanks.
It took another four days to modify the cab so it cleared the turbo and the intake pipes. After that he had to put in all the diesel, air, electric, electronic, hydraulic, brakes, and lights connections, double check all his measurements, and add water and oil.
"On February 16, at 4:40 pm was the last final test. I started the engine and took a while but finally started, I started crying and look toward the sky and told my father, 'This is your truck.'"
A few more modifications and he took the truck to the streets for the first time on Feb. 18, and made an appointment to get it approved by the California Air Resources Board.
"CARB congratulated me because they personally saw and liked the job done on this truck," he says. With the new lower-emissions engine, he says, the truck is good to work at the port until the year 2022.
"This is more than a project for me. It's a inspiration to people that love their vintage trucks and want to keep driving a old school truck with a modern engine that's clean."

Deborah Lockridge

Editor in Chief
Truck journalist 21 years, joined us in 1998. Plans and coordinates editorial, specializes in maintenance, drivers and fleet operations.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

When Can Driving Time be Considered Off-Duty Time?
Article thanks to, Tom Bray and J.J. Keller & Associates. Link provided below:

This question has to do with what has been termed “personal conveyance.” This is a situation where a driver is using his/her commercial vehicle as a personal vehicle to commute to and from a personal destination.

Under normal circumstances, all time spent at the controls operating a commercial vehicle must be logged as driving time (on-duty time if the driver is using one of the exceptions that allows the use of time records).
However, what happens with a driver is using his or her commercial vehicle as a personal vehicle to commute to or from a personal destination?
The concept of “off-duty driving time” is not actually in the regulations; however, it is discussed in the interpretations to Part 395. Interpretations are guidances published by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to provide a better understanding of the rules.

It can be done if you follow the rules

To be able to log personal conveyance time as off duty, there are several conditions that must be met. These conditions are the same whether a company driver is taking his/her company truck home or an owner-operator is taking his/her truck home (or to another personal destination).
First, you must be relieved of all responsibilities and conduct no on-duty activities. No work for the company is allowed during the personal conveyance. For example, you cannot bring the truck in for maintenance and call the trip personal conveyance.
Second, the trip and destination must be purely personal in nature. Moving to pick up your next load, bringing the truck into the terminal from your last destination, and running to the parts store for parts cannot be considered personal conveyance. You must be commuting to a personal destination, such as home, a restaurant, or a motel, and back.
Third, the vehicle must not be “laden.” In other words, you cannot be carrying any freight during the personal conveyance. If you drive a tractor trailer, this means not even pulling a trailer.
Fourth, you must not be “repositioning” the equipment. If you go from your company’s terminal to home, and then are dispatched to go get a trailer somewhere else, you have repositioned and cannot call the trip personal conveyance.
Fifth, you cannot be using the vehicle as a personal conveyance if you have been placed out of service for an hours-of-service violation.
Finally, the personal conveyance distance needs to be “reasonable.” You are not allowed to travel several hundred miles and call it personal conveyance. One definition of reasonable is, “Could the driver get 8 hours of sleep after arriving at the personal destination if the driver only took 10 hours off?” If the answer is no, then the distance may not be considered reasonable.
The Canadian regulations are a little more specific in this area. A driver in Canada cannot use the commercial vehicle for personal conveyance for more than 75 kilometers per day.

But they’re not paying me!

In certain situations, carriers may tell their drivers or owner-operators that they can just “head for home.” In many cases, when the carrier does this they do not pay the driver or owner-operator for their time or miles.
Does this change the situation? No, it does not. Pay is not a determining factor in whether a driver is on duty or off duty. The driver’s activity is what determines whether the driver should be logging on or off duty. If the driver is not relieved of all responsibilities, does work along the way, has a laden vehicle, or is repositioning equipment, the driver cannot claim the time is personal conveyance and the trip must be logged as on-duty and/or driving.
The only time pay is an issue when it comes to logging is if payroll records can prove that the driver was on duty. An example of this is paying a driver for loading or unloading. If the driver was specifically paid to load or unload, then the driver should have logged the time as on-duty time.
As you can see, there are several conditions that must be met to consider a trip with a commercial vehicle to be “personal conveyance.” The best advice is that when looking at the trip, if you are not sure you can meet one of the requirements, your best bet is to just keep logging the “regular” way.
Thomas Bray is Sr. Editor – Transportation Management for J.J. Keller & Associates, Inc. He spent more than 20 years in the motor carrier industry prior to joining J.J. Keller’s Transport Editorial Team eight years ago. His industry experience ranges from over-the-road driver and trainer to claims manager, lead instructor, and safety director.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Milwaukee's Suburpia sandwich war
I last wrote about Suburpia's famous sandwich shops in a post "Milwaukee gas station robbery - the new normal" last year. I had little idea of the troubled history of their shops, I just have always loved their sandwiches. I attempted to stop there on the way to the Milwaukee airport to pick up my wife last week and missed the exit. Would have wasted my time, as the store was closed!

Story thanks to Rick Romell of the Miwaukee Journal Sentinal. Link provided below:

Suburpia's ousted founder refuses to give up sandwich spices

Defying court ruling, William J. Foley adds to Tosa store's tangled history

Sept. 16, 2013  Amid a bitter dispute over a small but well-known business, the founder of the Suburpia sandwich shops has been ousted from the tiny chain's busiest location.
Forced by a court ruling, William J. Foley has handed over to former associates the keys to the Wauwatosa store, which revived a business that had thrived in the 1970s before skidding into bankruptcy, being sold to new owners and closing.
But in defiance of a judge's order, Foley has refused to surrender the shop's stock of the spices that help define Suburpia's sandwiches. It's personal property and he'll go to jail rather than turn the supply over, he said.
"I cannot give it up," Foley said Thursday just hours after Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Richard Sankovitz, during a hearing on potential contempt charges, directed him to do exactly that. "I'm not going to. I've spent 45 years doing this, and I've got a strong customer base and I'm not going to give away my family's birthright."
The spice war is the latest twist in what is shaping up as the strangest chapter yet in Suburpia's long, tangled history. It's a chapter that includes Foley's huge tax debt, unusual business arrangements and what Foley describes as a handshake deal with a former friend.
The future script is uncertain, but one possibility is dueling operations, both doing business as Suburpia.
Foley, who started the original Suburpia in 1967, claims primacy.
"There is no Suburpia without Foley," he said. "They have never operated the company, ever."
His friends-turned-foes, alleging misconduct by Foley, say they are the legitimate owners.
"Suburpia's been the icon forever, and we're trying to rock our baby and bring it back to what it should be," Marietta Duncan said last week, standing in the temporarily closed Wauwatosa store.
Duncan — part of the group awarded possession of the Suburpia at 10853 W. Blue Mound Road — is a pivotal figure in the battle. She testified in a deposition that she first met Foley about 20 years ago when he came to see her in her former capacity as an astrologer and consultant.
That was about when Foley was amid his first attempt — ultimately unsuccessful — to revive Suburpia. He had built the chain to more than 20 stores in the '70s, but by 1981 it was in Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The business was reorganized and sold, but three years later it was back in bankruptcy. A new owner bought it and ran it until 1989, then sold most of the shops to Subway and closed the rest.
Foley and Duncan's friendship grew, and by 2005 they were joining forces in yet another re-launching of Suburpia.

Staggering debt

But Foley had a problem: He owed a six-figure debt to the State of Wisconsin for unpaid taxes related to his previous ownership of Suburpia. The tax bill extended to the original business more than two decades earlier and had been fattened by mounting interest and debt that Foley says should be the responsibility of the chain's second owners.
In any event, the total stands at more than $1.3 million — enough to rank Foley at No. 11 on the state's delinquent-taxpayer list.
Foley already had spent a year in jail for failing to pay sales tax collected during his early-'90s iteration of Suburpia. As he planned the new venture, he didn't want to give the state Department of Revenue leverage to claim its proceeds.
So, Foley said, he and Duncan agreed that she would hold a 50% stake in a company called Sandwich Kings LLC — the largest single share — but that she would hold it on Foley's behalf. Duncan reneged on that deal, Foley said.
Not so, Duncan said. The 50% stake was never Foley's, but hers, she testified. She said she was given the ownership interest — for no initial investment — for the help she had extended to Foley over the years.
"It was an exchange of kindness," Duncan testified.

Dispute over profits

The other main partner was Christan Kramer, a former home-improvement business owner who also met Foley in the '90s.
Foley ran the business but received no paycheck. He did, however, draw what he called advances from Sandwich Kings' revenue. Who approved these?
"As the largest stockholder, I did," Foley said, "but they weren't great amounts."
Foley describes his withdrawals as appropriate. Duncan and Kramer, Sandwich Kings' president, disagree. Kramer, who testified in a deposition that he initially put close to $100,000 into the venture, also accuses Foley of hiding profits that should have gone to investors — a charge Foley denies.
The dispute boiled over early this year. On Jan. 8, Sandwich Kings fired Foley, and Kramer had the locks changed at the Wauwatosa shop. But the next day he found it open and running.
"Mr. Foley had taken the locks off of the store," Kramer testified.
The Kramer-Duncan faction said Foley and an associate were using a newly formed company to try to hold possession of the shop — which, in fact, they were able to do, operating as Bluemound Sandwich Kings Inc., until Sankovitz kicked them out on Sept. 6.
The judge gave Foley a few hours to hand over the keys and to "remove any personal belongings from the premises that are not used in the operation of the business."
He turned in the keys, but when he left the shop he also carried out its stock of spices. That, among other things, landed Foley back before Sankovitz last week facing a possible contempt citation.
Foley argues the seasonings are personal property, prepared by a spice company under a nondisclosure agreement with his daughter. But an irritated Sankovitz said Sandwich Kings had paid for its supply and now owns it.
It "appears to the outside world, Mr. Foley, that you're either trying to cripple the business or loot the business," the judge said. Foley later called that characterization "untoward."

Judges says order violated

Sankovitz also had ordered Foley not to operate any Sandwich Kings computers, and the judge was angered when Foley's attorney, Richard Schulz, acknowledged that one of the computers had been booted up. Schulz said Foley's faction needed information on the machine for two other Suburpia shops in the area, which they still operate.

But Sankovitz said that violated a clear order, and he referred to Foley as untrustworthy — drawing objections from Schulz.
The fight appears to be far from finished. As of Friday, Foley still held the spices,but the Wauwatosa Suburpia had reopened and, according to Duncan, was doing "excellent" business.
She wouldn't definitively say how the sandwiches were being seasoned, but said she "probably" was using spices she created. Those spices differ from the old Suburpia spices, "but not much," Duncan has said.
Kramer, meanwhile, said he and his partners should rightfully control not just the Wauwatosa shop but also those at 2264 N. Prospect Ave. and 116 E. Layton Ave.
Both sides are seeking trademarks. Sandwich Kings filed in February for the word Suburpia. In July, Foley's daughter applied to trademark The Original Suburpia.
And another front in the war may open soon: Last week Foley and an associate applied for a license to operate a fourth Suburpia, in downtown Milwaukee.

Update: July, 2015
William J. Foley, founder and once owner of the Suburpia sandwich shop chain, has been sentenced to 10 months in jail for unauthorized use of a credit card belonging to his former business partners.
Foley, 72, was charged last year with six felony counts related to unauthorized use of the credit card. In May, he pleaded no contest to a single count.
He later sought to withdraw the plea, but Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Dennis Moroney denied the motion. On Wednesday, Moroney placed Foley on probation for three years, with 10 months to be served in the House of Correction. He has work-release privileges if employed.
Foley built Suburpia into a popular chain in the 1960s and '70s, but later became enmeshed in a string of business and legal problems. His former partners now operate three area restaurants under the Suburpia name.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Mystery solved: The kid with Clarke Hinkle

Packers Heritage Trail organizers have
identified the boy at right, who was walking
with Green Bay Packers fullback Clarke Hinkle 
outside old City Stadium in this photo from the
Dec. 18, 1939,issue of Life magazine. /
Life magazine photo

Look at the size of this guy! Who was Clark Hinkle? An NFL Hall of Famer who played for the Green Bay Packers from 1932 to 1941. Thanks to the Green Bay Press Gazette for this piece. Link provided below:

Who's the kid walking with Green Bay Packers great Clarke Hinkle in this Life magazine photo from 1939? Turns out he lived a couple of blocks from old City Stadium, where the Packers played.
Last month, Packers Heritage Trail organizers put out a call for help, seeking information about the boy’s identity.
One of the sculptures in the trail's new plaza in downtown Green Bay is inspired by this photo.
Donald Hamacher was 11 when he was photographed holding hands with Hinkle outside old City Stadium. The photo appeared in the Dec. 18, 1939, issue of Life magazine.
Hamacher grew up on St. Clair Street, just west of City Stadium. He grew up to be a career Navy man.

William Clarke Hinkle. . .One of the most versatile stars in NFL annals. . . Fullback on offense, linebacker on defense. . . Famous for head-on duels with Bronko Nagurski of the Chicago Bears. . .Did everything well - ran, passed, punted, placekicked, caught passes. . . Savage blocker, vicious tackler, adept pass defender. . .All-NFL four years. . .Rushed 3,860 yards, scored 379 points, averaged 40.8 yards on punts. . .Top NFL scorer, 1938. . . Born April 10, 1909, in Toronto, Ohio. . .Died November 9, 1988, at age of 79.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Iowa is granting carry-in-public gun permits to blind people
Story thanks to Link provided below:
It's certainly one for the Conventional Wisdom File: Iowa is granting permits to acquire and carry guns in public to people who are legally or completely blind. State law, as it turns out, does not allow sheriffs to deny any Iowan the right to carry a weapon based on physical ability, though Dubuque County Sheriff Don Vrotsos said he wouldn't issue a permit to someone who is blind. Some people contend that denying the blind access to guns is also a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, though Patrick Clancy, superintendent of the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School said, "guns may be a rare exception to [my] philosophy that blind people can participate fully in life," according to The Des Moines Register.
Blind people owning guns is nothing new, but the carrying-in-public thing is, thanks to gun permit changes that took effect in 2011 in Iowa. "I'm not an expert in vision," Delaware County Sheriff John LeClere told the Register, "[But] If you see nothing but a blurry mass in front of you, then I would say you probably shouldn't be shooting something."

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Harley Ride to Chicago & Indy

This is a great guest post by my brother-in-law, Marty, about his cross country trip on his Harley Ultra-classic from Salt Lake City to Indiana and back. It's a good read and I'll have to get him to write another about his "misadventures" in the state of Iowa! Thanks Marty!

On Friday, August 9th I left around 6:30 in the morning on my Harley. It was a little cold outside with a few rain clouds scattered around the sky. I rode south on I-15 into Utah County and took Highway 6 up Spanish Fork Canyon. The mountain ride up the canyon, over Soldier Summit, and into Price was beautiful. I stopped in Wellington for fuel and a quick butt break. I continued on Highway 6 to I-70 near Green River and headed toward Colorado. The Book Cliffs and La Sal Mountains were an awesome backdrop. I stopped in Fruita, Colorado for more fuel and a quick bite to eat. The ride over the Colorado Rockies on I-70 was amazing, beautiful, exciting, but cold and wet. I got drenched!
I stopped a couple of times in the mountains to don rain gear and grab more fuel. I ran into some miserable road construction near Idaho Springs, and crawled along at about six miles per hour, in the freezing rain, for about ten miles. As I dropped down into Denver it dried out a little but was still pretty cool. I checked into the La Quinta Inn near Coors Field and was finally able to dry out and warm up. I rode about 520 miles that day.
That night I walked over to Coors Field to watch the Rockies play the Pirates. I had pretty good seats behind the home-team dugout. It was great to finally be back in a Major League stadium and watch my favorite team win. Colorado beat the Pirates 10-1. After the game I walked back to my hotel and went to bed.

Saturday, August 10th I left early in the morning and headed out across the Plains. My goal for the day was to make it to Kansas City, MO. I rode all day, logging 630 miles. I fought a nasty head-wind the first half of the day which really took a toll on me. I made fuel stops in Flagler CO, Colby KS, Hays KS, Salina KS, and somewhere on the Kansas Turnpike. I spent about 30 minutes crawling through a construction zone at the east end of the turnpike. I arrived at the Drury Inn next to Kaufmann Stadium at about 8:30pm. I had a fantastic view of Kaufmann Stadium from the window of my room. I ate a terrible dinner at the Denny's next to the hotel, vowing to never visit a Denny's again, and then went to bed.

I spent Sunday, August 11th in Kansas City. I ate a pretty good breakfast at the hotel and wandered around the area. I walked over to the baseball stadium just before noon and spent about an hour wandering around the inside of the ballpark. They spent several million dollars updating and remodeling the stadium a few years ago. The last time I was there it was a miserable concrete bunker with narrow, crowded causeways. Now it is a modern beautiful park with lots of fun things to see and do. I had an amazing seat to watch the Royals play the Red Sox. I was on the front row behind home plate, the best seat I've ever had at a Major League game. It got real hot and humid during the day game, but I loved every second of it. I loved being so close and seeing so many famous players. The Royals won the game 4-3.
After the game I walked back to my room to cool down and take a much needed
shower. I rode to Gates Bar-B-Q for dinner. It wasn't as good as I thought it would be. After dinner I went to bed.

Monday, August 12th I woke up early planning to get an early start on my ride to

Chicago. It was raining so hard that I didn't dare ride. I hung out at the hotel waiting for the rain to pass. I wasn't able to leave until after 10:00am. The first part of the ride was very wet. I rode north to Cameron MO where I was finally able to remove my rain gear. I then headed east on Highway 36. The ride across
Missouri was fun and pretty. I stopped in Brookfield for fuel and spent a while talking to some interesting locals at the gas station. My next stop was in Barry IL, just across the Mississippi. I continued north and east on I-72 and I-55, making another gas stop in Lincoln IL. I made one last gas and food stop in Channahon IL, just outside the Chicago metro area. The last leg of my ride into the city was in the dark and a little rainy. Traffic got a little congested but it wasn't a bad ride. I arrived at the Hyatt Regency-McCormick Place around 9:00pm. When I walked into my fancy room on the 16th floor I was taken away by the amazing view of the night-time city skyline. I unpacked and crawled into bed. I rode 517 miles that day.

Tuesday, August 13th was kind of a rest and prep day. I did a little work and took care of some administrative issues. I went for a ride through a downtown area and rode out to the burbs to pick up some food and buy a pair of workout shoes. That night I went to a White Sox game with a couple of guys from work. The game went into extra innings so I was out late.

Wednesday through Friday, August 14-16 I attended the International Association of Fire Chiefs annual meetings and training. It was held at McCormick Place Convention Center which is connected to the Hyatt where I stayed. I attended multiple meetings, training sessions, and social/networking functions. It was nice to see some of the friends I've made over the years from all over the nation. Every morning before my meetings or classes I spent about 90 minutes in the gym at the hotel riding an exercise bike. Riding an exercise bike is not nearly as fun as a real bike on real roads or trails, but as Jethro Tull says, "I don't want to be a fat man".
While in Chicago I did venture out into Chicagol and a few times. Twice I took rides on the Harley through the amazing downtown areas, along Lake Michigan, and several miles out into the suburbs. The rides were interesting and fun. One night I took off on foot and walked around for several hours. I walked past Soldier Field where the Bears play, the Shed Aquarium, Adler Planetarium, and out onto Northerly Island Park. I saw some fantastic evening views of the city, Lake Michigan, and a very beautiful marina full of fancy yachts. There was a very loud outdoor rock concert going on at Meigs Field out on the island. I'm not sure who was playing but I stood outside for about thirty minutes enjoying the music
and cheering of the huge crowd.

Saturday, August 17th I did my early morning workout, showered, and went to the IAFC Closing General Session. I left before it finished. I packed up the bike and checked out of the hotel. I rode south along Lake Michigan, mostly along back roads, until I crossed into Indiana. From there I rode the Interstates toward Greenwood. I fell in with a huge pack of bikers that was riding over 100 mph, and rode with them for about an hour. That was fun! I arrived in Greenwood at about 3:00 pm. A few days earlier I tried to make hotel reservations for Greenwood. It seemed like every single hotel in the area was booked for the night. I was finally able to get a room at the Red Carpet Fanta Suites real close to Tom & Norene's house. The reviews of the hotel were pretty bad, but I didn't have any other options. When I checked into the hotel they asked, "Do you want the Las Vegas Room or the Alien Encounter Room". I was a little shocked to find out they had themed rooms..., really old and outdated themed rooms...., that were probably nice about 40 years ago. 
Space ship bed
Oh well. I picked the Alien Encounter room, and was then told it wouldn't be ready until after 4:00 pm. I jumped back on the Harley and rode over to Tom & Norene's house. I had a great visit with Tom & Norene, catching up on things and looking at several of his paintings. The exciting part was when he offered to give me one of his paintings that I love. I am so excited to finally have a Tom Slack painting. After our visit I rode back to the "fancy" hotel to change out of my biker clothes and get cleaned up. The Alien Encounter room was both disgusting and fun, but mostly disgusting. The hallway smelled old and moldy. The room itself was clean, but very outdated and dark. I did get a kick out of the room and it's nutty decor. After cleaning up I went back to Tom & Norene's and we went to dinner at a really good Mexican place. I loved spending time with them! From there we drove up to Sarah's house where I was able to visit with her family and see their beautiful home and property. Sarah fed us some really good desert.
We then drove over to Jennifer's new house. It is beautiful. I enjoyed visiting with her family and catching up on everything. By the time we got back to Tom's house it was pretty late, and since I needed to be up early to start my ride toward home we ended the night and I went back to my crazy home for the night. It was weird sleeping in a space ship, and I didn't get very much sleep. In retrospect I probably should have accepted Tom & Norene's offer to stay at their home. I hate being a burden on anyone but, lesson learned.

Sunday, August 18th I left Greenwood as soon as the sun was up and headed west. I enjoyed a beautiful day of riding through Indiana, and all the way across Illinois and Missouri. I arrived in St. Joseph, MO around 7:00 pm. Along the way I made stops at Oakwood IL, Jacksonville IL, the Mississippi River near Hannibal MO, and Brookfield MO. I rode 519 miles.
I checked into a Days Inn that looked deserted, but it was clean and nice. I had an
interesting meal at Carlos O'Kelly's (Irish Mexican) and grabbed a few things from the grocery store before calling it a night.
Monday, August 19th after a quick hotel breakfast I was on my way again. I rode north for a little while and had to pass across a tiny corner of Iowa. Have I told you that I hate Iowa, absolutely hate that state? But that's another story based on past riding adventures. I can honestly say however that my feet never touched the ground in Iowa, only the rubber of my wheels. Once I crossed into Nebraska and brushed the putrid Iowa air off my body I felt much better. The ride across Nebraska was kind of nice. The weather wasn't bad and the scenery was actually pretty nice. I stopped for the night in Cheyenne Wyoming after riding 600 miles, arriving just after 7:00 pm (Mountain Time Zone). Stops along the route included Syracuse NE, Doniphan NE, Gothenburg NE, Big Springs NE (next to the Northeast corner of Colorado), and Pine Bluffs
WY. I checked into a little "hole in the wall" motel, ate dinner at a crappy restaurant on Lincolnway, and went to bed.

Tuesday, August 20th was the last leg of my ride. Rainclouds and wind plagued me all the way across Wyoming and through Utah until I arrived in Taylorsville. I spent about an hour in Rock Springs along the way trying to rest my sore butt. I arrived home and resumed the normal chaos of life at about 4:30 pm. I rode 454 miles.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Tunneling Machine Begins 14-month Journey Beneath Seattle
Would you be willing to drive into a two mile long tunnel under the city of Seattle? I don't know if I could! Article thanks to Link provided:

July 31, 2013  Bertha, the world’s largest tunneling machine, officially started the 2-mile journey beneath downtown Seattle. This afternoon, Bertha’s 5-story-tall cutterhead broke through the north wall of her 80-foot-deep launch pit. She’s expected to emerge in about 14 months near the intersection of Sixth Avenue North and Harrison Street. 

Crews working with the Washington State Department of Transportation will push forward slowly at first, digging about 6 feet per day. By the time the machine is beneath downtown, she will dig up to 35 feet per day. 

The tunnel route is divided into 10 separate zones, each with its own underground landscape. In the first zone, crews strengthened or replaced fill soils dumped there by the city’s early settlers while building protected areas where they can inspect the machine. 

“We designed the project so that we would have opportunities to test the machine and make sure she’s functioning properly before we get beneath downtown,” said Linea Laird, WSDOT administrator for the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program. “If Bertha was learning to ride a bike, this initial section would be her training wheels.” 

The tunnel is scheduled to open to vehicles in late 2015. For more information about the SR 99 Tunnel Project, visit

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Don't fall for this tricky Facebook scam
Good advice thanks to Kim Komando at Link provided below:

Hackers and scammers never sleep. They're always looking for new ways to trick you and take your information and money.
Facebook is becoming one of their favorite targets. I've warned you in the past about common Facebook scams to avoid
Well, there's a new Facebook scam making the rounds. So far it's tricked an estimated 800,000 users, and it's still spreading like crazy.
Here's how it works: A post might show up in your news feed. Or maybe you'll get an email or Facebook message.
It will tell you that a Facebook friend has tagged you in a video and give you a link to watch the video. That sounds fairly normal so far.
If you click on the link, however, you'll see a message that you need a browser plug-in or extension to watch the video. This is where things get bad.
Once installed, the extension sends your email and social media account usernames and passwords back to the hackers. They can go through your accounts looking for sensitive information.
They also use your accounts to send the same fake message to your friends. That's how the virus keeps spreading.
As always, you need to be on your guard and follow the rules for spotting phishing scams.

• Don't click on links or download attachments in email from people you don't know.
• Don't click on links or download attachments in email from people you DO know if it looks fishy (or phishy in this case). It's best to verify with the person who sent it.
• Don't click on links in Facebook that look out of character for the person posting them - or that promise something out of character for Facebook.
• Don't click on links or download attachments in email from companies, even ones you do business with. Visit the company's site manually or give them a call to confirm the email.
• Don't install programs or browser extensions from unsolicited email, Facebook or Twitter links. If you must, go find the program or extension's official website and download it from there.
• Don't visit shady websites. Especially don't give them personal information or download files from them.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

CSA: Skipping Your Break Is Worse Than DUI
Story thanks to Link provided below: Another example of our government stupidity!
What’s worse for driver safety: skipping your lunch break, or being drunk behind the wheel? It seems like a no-brainer, but according to the CSA, you’re more of a menace to society if you didn’t take a break than if you’re so drunk you can’t see straight.
A change was made to the CSA scoring system recently when a new violation was added to CSA profiles this past week. A carrier will now receive seven points on their BASIC score if drivers fail to take their federally mandated 30-minute break. A DUI/DWI will earn a carrier five points.
Another change that was made is to add a new violation that would add three points to a carrier’s BASIC score if a driver has alcohol in the cab with him. This change came at the request of law enforcement officers who previously had to add a five point alcohol use violation any time that a driver had an open container in their vehicle.
This of course means that the CSA thinks that a driver who misses their 30 minute break is more than twice the safety risk as a driver who has an open bottle of whisky sitting next to them.