Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year

Sabai Dee Bee Mai!



May your 2015 be blessed with happiness, good health, wealth, and all those good things in life that you want.  Hope to catch up with you for some good times in the land of smiles!


Tuesday, December 30, 2014

One of these could save your life (or Someone else's life)

As I was going through some blogs on survival, I noticed something that I was missing in my bug out bag.  Specifically it was emergency supplies to handle major bleeding wounds or trauma.  This could be a result of a big accidental cut, a fall, or even a wound from a knife or gun.  Sometimes is not the wound itself that kills, but the subsequent bleeding that can cause death.

To that end, I've purchased a couple of products from Amazon.  The first is a product from Adventure Medical Kits, called their "Trauma Pak".  It comes complete with a variety of dressings and bandages for a wide range of injuries.  What I like especially is the Quikclot, which is used to quickly clot the blood and hopefully stop the bleeding until more extensive medical services can be provided.  Amazon has these for $20 and it along with the Israeli Battle dressing makes a perfect combination to handle most trauma issues.

These are also good to have in the car, along with a first aid kit.  I am bringing a couple back to the LOS with me, one to put up in the resort and the other for my car.  When traveling in Thailand, one could be quite a distance from the nearest medical facility and being trained in first aid and use of basic trauma supplies is good insurance for survival.

Here are a couple of video of how they are intended to be used:


Here is the video on the battle dressing.


Like all things, these are not a necessity but an 'insurance' or 'what if" product.  Something that you hope that you will never have to use.  But if you need one and don't have one...then it far too late to order it online from Amazon....even with prime delivery.


Sunday, December 28, 2014

Publishing My Blog Book

One of the Front Covers
Finally after all these years, I've decided to publish a book with all my blog posts since 2005.  I should have said a few books as there are multiple volumes.    Its been nine years and after 1800 posts and over 2000 comments, it was time to make sure that I had something to keep and read should they decided to shut down blogger or god forbid, there is a massive computer crash and I lose all my posts.  

It will also provide some great reading material when I get old, and maybe someday one of my kids will be able to read it and get a clear picture of these wonderful years in my life - where I was, what I was doing, thinking, and even eating.  It took five volumes for all the archived files.  Unfortunately, I lost about two years of photos for the blog when I accidentally deleted them from Picassa a few years back.  Another reason to capture it in print form - human errors.  

I am using a service called Blog2Print.  It interfaces with your blog and captures all the posts in a selected date range or the entire blog if its not too large.  It then formats the pages into book form and allows one to design the front cover, back cover, etc.  Depending on the number of pages, you have a number of options for the cover material.  You can select a hardcover with binding or a softcover depending on your budget.  There is a limit of around 500 pages for each book so that is why I had to do a number of volumes to capture all nine years of posts.  

sample of pages inside book.  Full color photos


For now, there will be only one copy of the books and I have no plans to publish it for public consumption.  Don't think there will be any interest  and the cost per copy is prohibitive  (typically over $125 each).  But as they say....memories are priceless!

Custom Back Cover



Saturday, December 27, 2014

Nightmare Death Syndrome

***Note:  This post originally appeared in my blog in August of 2007.  Since I took content private before this year offline, I have still been getting numerous hits on my blog referring to many pages that has been removed from public view.  This is obviously an important topic to some as I've gotten a ton of hits on this page so I've decided to re-post that entry for the sake of sharing information.  Also if you are interested in my older archived posts from the past (Since 2005), I will be taking invitation requests for access as its now a private blog  and open to viewers by invitation only. *****


Nightmare Death Syndrome

A Thai worker died recently in Taiwan. Like in the scariest horror movie, he was perfectly healthy and in his prime when suddenly he screamed out in his sleep during a nightmare and died. Nightmare Death syndrome is one of the leading causes of sudden death of young men in Southeast Asia, the Philippines and Japan. The largest number of these events occur in Thailand's Northeast (Issan), and is the second leading cause of death after road accidents. The syndrome occurs so often that it has been studied by the CDC. Since 1977 more than 100 have died from this disorder in the US alone (mostly Hmong immigrants).


This syndrome usually only afflicts men, average median age of 33, in good health, and all having the same kind of death...screaming during their sleep and then dying. In Thailand, many believe that these men are the victims of "widow ghosts" that come and claim young men to ease their loneliness. In the Philippine culture, this syndrome is called "Bangungut", which is also the word for nightmare.

First investigated by Dr Gonzalo Aponte of the US Naval Hospital in Guam in 1960 after the death of some Filipino sailors, he found that sudden night deaths were well known in the Filipino community. In fact they were recorded across the entire Far East. According to folklore, the sleeper is attacked by a nocturnal demon that squats on his chest and suffocates him. Witness reports bear this out, describing “choking, gasping, groaning, gurgling, frothing at the mouth, labored breathing without wheezing or strider, screaming, and other signs of terror.”

While the exact cause of this syndrome is still being debated, there has been some headway in this area. For example, take this extract from Fourteantimes:

The breakthrough finally came from this side of the Atlantic. In 1986, Spanish-born Dr Pedro Brugada came across an unusual pattern on an electrocardiogram, which shows the electrical activity in the heart. The patient suffered from an irregularity in his heartbeat, and he had an ECG trace that looked like a shark’s fin.

The same unusual pattern turned up in two further patients, both men in their forties who had suffered from sudden collapses. Dr Brugada collected several more cases and by 1992 he was certain. The shark-fin ECG pattern, now known as the Brugada Sign, represents an irregularity in the rhythm of the heart. This irregularity can cause fibrillation, when the chambers of the heart pump out of sequence. The circulation of the blood ceases, and if the heart is not stimulated with an electric shock or similar treatment, the results are fatal. This condition – “sudden death with structurally normal heart” – became known as Brugada Syndrome.

Brugada deaths are different from those caused by other cardiac conditions because they are associated with periods of slow heartbeat. Deaths generally occur at night, or when the victim is sitting peacefully, not during strenuous exercise. “The typical patient is 40 years old, in the best moment of his life, very active, very productive, with no previous history of anything, and all of a sudden one night he never wakes up,” says Dr Brugada. SUDS patients showed the same telltale ECG pattern and it was confirmed that SUDS and Brugada Syndrome are essentially the same condition.

Many believe this syndrome is related to sudden infant death/Sudden Unexplained death syndrome and may be generic in nature. It has all the signs...males, Asian, and mostly from a specific region in the country. The surprising thing about this problem is how little effort is being applied to finding a cure for it. If it is indeed such a large cause of death among young men in northeast of Thailand, then a larger portion of the Thai research dollars should be allocated to identifying those at risk and finding ways to help the problem. But in many countries, young Asian males, especially from poor regions are considered 'expendable' commodities and thus not given priority in the political or medical system. There is no media interest, no political gain, and most likely considered a racial disease (i.e. Sickle Cell Armenia) that cannot cross over and affect others. I don't want to sound like a negative racist, but I can't help but wonder what would have been the reaction if this syndrome affected only middle class Caucasian women, in prime health, in their 30's?

Anyway, before you go to bed tonight don't forget to say your night prayers. You never know if that widow demon will visit and take you away. She must be one horny ghost...thank god I'm too old for her...

A Christmas present to myself

I backed a kickstarter project and gave this to myself for NEXT Christmas.  It won't be available until next year around Christmas - so I'm a year early.  Kickstarter is a website that helps new ideas get funded by offering specials to backers.

Why a bullet proof baseball hat?   I think its a great investment for that end of the world as we know it scenario or just something to bring along hunting, shooting, etc. as a piece of safety equipment.  Just like a helmet when riding your bike.  The nice thing is that this hat offers protection without looking like a military helmet and drawing a lot of attention.  

Why didn't I think of this? ...greatest thing since sliced bread.  You can stil get in on the action.  See this website:  https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/CalmTom/the-bulletsafe-bulletproof-baseball-cap


Oh, you can also get special designs and logos put on the hat at extra charge.


Thursday, December 25, 2014

A Christmas greeting to my little girl.

A little video card for my little girl Marina.  Sorry Daddy is not home this year and I miss you and mom terribly.    Here are some songs from your favorite Little Baby Bum characters......



Back from Tahoe, safe and sound.  Will be spending the next couple of days with the grand kids, after Christmas shopping, etc., before heading back home to the land of smiles in mid January.

Happy holidays everyone!!!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Heading up to the Mountains

Going up to Tahoe this morning.  Plan to spend the night at Stateline before coming back late tomorrow afternoon.  Its been a long time since I've been to Tahoe...over twenty years.  In my younger days, I went skiing often at the various resorts in the Lake Tahoe area and had a particular liking for Heavenly Valley.  It also helped that my older brother owned a cabin there, but we always chose to stay near the Casinos for the great buffets.  

Since then, the area has changed tremendously as has my body.  My aged knees and ankles are unlikely to be able to take the pounding of a day of skiing and I've never been on a snowboard.  So this trip is merely a sight-seeing trip and to play a bit with the abundant new snow.  Will be staying at one of the Casinos and hopefully check out their buffets and maybe see a show.

http://www.kcra.com/dynamic-images/transient/image/sac/14075350?maxw=480&maxh=360
Live Webcam of Stateline at Tahoe

No snow is predicted for the next couple of days so the drive should be OK, but I do have a 4WD vehicle just in case.  The webcam above shows clear skies and snow capped mountains!

Hopefully some pictures when I get back.


Sunday, December 21, 2014

Went to see the Christmas Lights!



After seeing the YouTube videos of this light display and seeing it on TV, I had to make a trip to see this house in person.  I was in the area anyway as I had a scheduled dinner with my godmother in the Hayward/Union City area.  Featured on Good Morning America several times, in the running for the best light shows in the Nation contest, and having more than 3 million hits on YouTube, this display is totally unbelievable in real life.  For some that are in attendance, comments like "makes Vegas seem like kindergarden", etc. are heard as well as oohs, and wows. I can affirm that seeing it live vs video adds an element of crowd reaction and viewing scope that cannot be captured by cameras.


I'm sure the local police will come in an spoil the fun soon as the traffic was pretty bad


The light show consists of about 30 minutes of choreography to various holiday songs, including the highly popular and controversial Star Wars routine (controversial as in "what does Star Wars have to do with Christman?).  It starts at 6PM  and ends at 10PM and a word of warning....it gets crowded!  The house is located in a quiet neighborhood in Newark and it will strain neighborly relations to the fullest during the holidays.  But for the people and kids that make it there, its magical.



Remember its all for the kids.


The music is piped softly so that those in near proximity can hear it, but there is also a private FM channel set up on 99.9 so that one can listen in the car and/or with an FM radio in whatever volume one desires.  As I said in the last post, I feel lucky to be here in California during the holidays this year...this is one reason why.  The creator is not charging anyone to see it nor is he making any money.  In fact, he is encouraging those that like it to donate to the Church he belongs to for their free meals program via paypal.  So its all for charity and giving back to the neighborhood.


Those lucky enough to be in front.

Anyway, I've added one more funny video from the collection of light shows being shown now.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Going to visit Tonight or Tomorrow.

This is worth a visit this weekend (weather permitting)  - just down a bit in Newark, California.  Joys of being here in the Bay Area during this time of year. Where else can you be among the creators of Star Wars and the geniuses of Silly-con Valley?   For those not here...enjoy the video!





and for the little kids.....

The Sony Hack


A lot is being debated in the media regarding the Sony Hack as if this was something new and out of the blue.  But for some time now, many of us have been warning about the vulnerability of digital data over the internet.  I had even taken my blog off public publication a couple of times over the same issues.  I believe then and now that NOTHING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF YOUR KEYBOARD IS SECRET.  Post to Facebook, or any other social media and that data will be available forever and to everyone, no matter what 'privacy' features the vendors say they provide.  

If someone is interested in your secrets, then they can get it if they have the right knowledge or skills.  Why are the other Hollywood companies so scared?...they've all got many damaging secrets that are vulnerable to hacking and they don't want to be the next target.
  
Secondly, a lot of talk is about a cyber war that is about to begin, but once again, a little known fact is that this war has been going on for some time.  The West used cyber warfare against Iran to disable their computers connected to the development of their nuclear weapons.  We spend billions to spy on other countries, including monitoring private phone calls of people around the world.  Have we forgotten all the stuff that Edward Snowden released just a few months ago?  We (USA) didn't get all that information via the TMZ channel!  

Now that the tables are turned and we find we are as naked as everyone else in the world when it comes to internet privacy, there is this big alarm bell ringing.  We should have known better.  These hackers are smart people - all they need is an internet connection, a laptop, and they can bring down an empire.  No need for large missiles, warships, and airplanes....why?, because they can all be controlled via digital commands.  Shoot off a missile and it can be re-directed back at you...scramble the GPS and radar and your planes are lost...yada yada yada.   



The reality is that those that say a cyber war is starting is absolutely right.  In the future, those with the best internet skills, digital skills, and drone technology will be the super powers of the new world order.  Drone armies, robot soldiers, EMP power grid attacks, and even monetary system destruction will be the new weapons of war.  Sounds futuristic?...well seems like the future is closer than we think...just ask Sony.

An EMP attack only takes ONE nuclear warhead, exploded high in the atmosphere.

This also implies that even if the burst took place 1000 miles from the West coast, that it could still knock down the western half of the US



Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Lucky Day!



Managed to snag two OnePlus one phones today.  Got the 64GB versions in black on their special promotion of their 1st birthday.  Getting one of these phones has been hard because sales were limited to invitees only.  But today, they had about 10,000 of them for sale without invitation and I was lucky enough to hear about the promo from one of their social media sites.  Anyway, they didn't last long as by the time I was finished with my payment, they were already sold out and the promo is now off their website.



Why all the excitement over a phone?  Well, this phone is a significant departure over the normal process of buying highly marked up phones via layerd distribution channels, resellers, and telephone companies.  This high end, high spec phone is about 1/2 the price of their brand name counterparts.  The components are top notch and build quality is excellent.  Reviewers have been raving about this phone's performance, speed, quality, and price.  Detailed features here:  https://oneplus.net/one#features-fsp

 For many, this is as exciting as a new iPhone release - people reselling the phones for a hefty profit on ebay, etc. Anyway, I got mine today and hopefully it will arrive before Christmas.....can't wait....Santa, please hurry!  B is going to have to wait for hers until next month...555




Looking for an Invitation

Anyone out there with an One Plus One invitation that they don't need and willing use to invite me?

I'm interested...will even buy you dinner in BKK!

What is One Plus One?  Read more here:  https://oneplus.net/  Available for purchase by invitation only.

High Spec Phone for as low as $299 USD

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Clean Water

Long before your food runs out in a TEOTWAWKI situation, or just a prolonged interruption of services, there is a good chance that you might die of thirst first if you don't have enough water or liquid stored.  Many prepers have tons of food stashed away, but few have enough water.  I hear all the time that someone has 'two months of food' stored thinking that would be enough.  Well, unless you have two months of water stored too, its kind of pointless as food without water is only 1/2 of your dietary needs.  What if the need goes beyond two months?  Can you survive 6 months without tap water?  Its a fact that people can survive longer without food than water - especially in hot climates.

Storing 6 months of water is not very practical for the city dweller or condo resident like myself.  Aside from the lack of space, the weight and equipment needed would make it impractical.  So the only answer is to get a renewable way of getting fresh water.  Two thoughts come to mind.  First is a way to collect fresh water.  With the rains we have had in the Bay Area the last few weeks, it would be easy with a plastic sheet, some poles, and large containers to collect enough rainwater to last through the near term for a few weeks.  

Secondly, when no rainwater is available, then the other alternative is to get dirty water and filter it.  At least this would allow a way to use water from ponds, creeks, etc as a source of last resort.  

Family Edition

Enter the EarthEasy LifeStraw.  This easy to use filter can provide enough drinking water for a family of five for over 3 years.  This award winning filter is easy to use, requires no power, and is highly effective.  Anyway, for those interested, Woot has a great deal on them today.  http://www.woot.com/offers/eartheasy-lifestraw-family-1-0-2?ref=cnt_dly_wobtn

I bought two of them.  Plan to bring one home to the land of smiles.  We have a pond across the resort and having this filter insures we have a steady supply of clean drinking water for three years.  Not too bad for a $50 USD investment.

Its not bug out bag size, but something that can be used when you decide to bug out in place, which may be the best choice at times, depending on the situation.  For bug out bags, its best to use a portable, hand held water purifier and a water bottle to keep things light.

Bug out bag version good for 1000 liters

Portable, bug our bag version 2
Never can tell when the sh*t will hit the fan, it seems with all that has happened in the last week or so that it can't be too far away.  Just hoping that I can get back to the LOS before all hell breaks loose.  At least my airline ticket is all paid for.


Saturday, December 13, 2014

Tax payers just got the shaft...Derivatives

With the spending bill that was passed yesterday, there were a few 'add-ons' included.  One tiny little section in the bill dealt with the FDIC being responsible for hedging and swap instruments carried on by its member banks.  No big deal except that the bank's exposure in the derivatives market is over $303 Trillion dollars.  That pales in size to the $18 Trillion national debt we have currently.  Essentially what this little add-on does is guarantee to back up the banks in the event they cannot meet their obligations in the derivative market by the US Tax payers.  

In the event of hedging against low oil prices, if a bank cannot meet its obligations, the taxpayers now own this obligation and must make good if they fail.  Essentially, its going to be a forced bailout of the banks - except this time the bailout won't be in the billions, but in the trillions.

With oil prices predicted to continue their slide and low prices, someone is going to be on the hook for the price hedges placed by the oil producers and investors.  As of yesterday, we know who that will be as we got the shaft once again by our legislators.  When the derivative market implodes, you can look back at this post and said at least you were warned ahead of time.  What you do with this knowledge is now up to you.

More info and charts and details here:  http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/tag/derivatives

One thing for sure is that I won't be in any kind of bank or investment stock.


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Shadow DID know


Back in the early days of the military coup, I wrote that certain countries, the US being one of them, really tried to derail the change and attempted to put the previous people back into office.  There was more than the usual interest taken for this tiny little country in southeast Asia.  

I wrote back then:

One pet peeve I have is how the US and some of its blossom buddies like the UK and Australia continue to admonish Thailand about the coup.  Its obvious they have something more than a passing interest in the welfare of the Thai people when they are pressing for early elections and democracy.  Its really hypocritical when the US has in the past not only supported dictators but instigated regime change in the self interest of Wall Street and other special interests.  Or is the support of the ousted government to protect some deep dark secrets, like maybe the details of the hidden prisons where we kept POWs for 'enhanced interrogation".  Only the shadows knows.

Well today, after the release of the CIA report, its confirmed that Thailand was one of the sites where 'enhanced interrogation' and torture took place.  It also meant that the ruling party and government at the time not only gave permission, but covered up the situation from the Thai people as well as the world.  No wonder that the out stead party has such pull in trying to get the new government condemned around the globe.  It makes sense now...the US had its dirty little hands in the country like in many others and was trying to keep it secret.

From Today's paper:

Thailand's 'detention Site Green'
After al-Qaida operative Abu Zubaydah was arrested in Pakistan, the CIA received permission to use waterboarding, sleep deprivation, close confinement and other techniques. Agency officials added unauthorized methods into the mix, the report says.
Zubaydah was held in a secret facility in Thailand, called "detention Site Green" in the report. Early on, with CIA officials believing he had information on an imminent plot, Zubaydah was left isolated for 47 days without questioning, the report says. Later, he was subjected to the panoply of techniques. He later suffered mental problems.   


The shadow did know...555  


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

A visit to the Disney Family Museum



Had a chance to visit the Disney Family Museum at the former San Francisco Fort Presidio  over the weekend.   Not too many people know that this little gem exists inside the Fort which also houses ILM and a host of other businesses and organizations.  The museum is a historical tribute to the life of Walt Disney and contains photos, memorabilia, and exhibits.  It portrays his life, his family's life, and his development from a cartoon artist to one of the most iconic people in history.  It also contains space for workshops a small theater, gift shop, and even a coffee shop for those that get hungry during their visit.


animated displays along with photo fill the walls


Workshops for kids on animation

Winding through multiple floors and a couple of buildings, the museum is a must see for Disney fans.  What I found amazing was how very close to the edge of bankruptcy Walt Disney came in a number of occasions and betting the farm on his next venture - only to succeed beyond his wildest dreams.  He was above all, an innovator who was always pushing the edge of technology and entertainment to bring the entertainment to the masses.  Disneyland was his creative canvass to bring this to the masses.  In a way, I miss the old days when Disney and Disneyland brought out attractions that existed no where else and had people and competitors wondering just how they did it.


I distinctly remember when Disneyland brought out the concept of audio-animatronics.  The enchanted tiki room, Small World, Pirates of the Caribbean, Great moments with Abraham Lincoln, etc.  Now years later, its again being introduced in new attractions.


One of the highlights of the museum was the mock-up of Disneyland.  It was a bit outdated and did not include the changes since the addition of California Adventures and a few ride revisions were omitted but its still a fascinating display of detail.  And detail is what set Disney apart from his peers.  It was once televised that the Disney maintenance organization knew when every single light bulb in the park was installed and based on the expected lifespan of the bulb, would change it in time so that there would be no burned out bulbs that the public would see.  One of the highlights of the museum was the mock-up of Disneyland.  It was a bit outdated and did not include the changes since the addition of California Adventures and a few ride revisions were omitted but its still a fascinating display of detail.  And detail is what set Disney apart from his peers.  It was once televised that the Disney maintenance organization knew when every single light bulb in the park was installed and based on the expected lifespan of the bulb, would change it in time so that there would be no burned out bulbs that the public would see.  

Disneyland scale model




Ambulance Walt Disney drove during the war

Seniors and AAA members get discounts and expect to spend a few hours to see the museum thoroughly.   Free parking is available outside.




Friday, December 5, 2014

A very silent transition

Today is like any other day, but it could be one of the most important days in American history.  Like a quiet wind in the night, few saw it coming and many will not even know it was here and gone.  

Starting today, America or the US of A, is no longer the largest economy in the world.  It's now number two, behind China.


So what does it mean?  Nothing for now, but as the days wear on, we will be sliding farther and farther back unless things change drastically.  Does that mean #1 is lost forever?  No one can tell...maybe China will have its day with hiccups and drop a notch or two, but the reality is that losing economic dominance is generally the first step in a prolonged decline of an empire.  History has shown that to be true - without exception.  

Its not yet time to bail out or bug out, but to be cognizant that life for us Americans will be changing and things that we took for granted are not going be the same.  It will cost more for things and we will need to earn more to keep up.  The dollar is starting to lose significance in world trade and may ultimately lose its reserve currency status in a matter of a few years.  So the wisdom of the day may be to get into non dollar denominated assets,  prepare for harder times ahead, and maybe get use to being #2 or even lower for a while.......maybe forever.  


On a more positive note, I got Velda registered in California yesterday.  Got to give credit to the DMV reservation system.  After hearing all the horror stories about people waiting for hours only to be turned away or having to come back, I made an online reservation and made 200% all my documentation was completed correctly beforehand.  The end result was that I got in and out in 20 minutes with my license plates in hand!  Now I won't have to worry about being stopped anymore.  And yes, Velda is a non dollar denominated asset.  

In a not so positive vane, After some more checking, Velda's heater seems to be broken, and there is a slight drift in the suspension while driving.  Both could be cheap fixes or potential money pits, but that is expected of a 25 year old classic.   Going to invest the time and money to make it right as I plan on keeping her for at least another 25 years...555  

Bye bye Miss American Pie, took my Velda to leeve, but the leeve was dry
   Them good old boys were drinking whiskey and rye (and doing some dope too)
         Singing "this will be the day that I'll die",  "this will be the day that I'll die"....


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

She's here!

The 560SL arrived today from Florida.  Got a call in the morning that the car would be delivered in the afternoon, and lo and behold, at 2:30 PM the truck rolls up and unloads the car on the street next to the condo.  I then did the walk-through, checking for dents and scratches against the bill of landing and all was well.  Paid the drivers and was given the keys and possession on the street behind the truck.  

Took me a while to figure out all the controls -- for example, I couldn't figure out where the parking brake release knob was located.  Finally, I pulled out the owner's manual and found it - right on the dash!  Anyway, I got settled in and then went to the gas station to fill up.  Got sticker shock...$60 to fill up.  Had to buy the good stuff (Premium grade 91) and this car has a huge tank.  My CRV costs only about 1/2 of that to fill up since it has a smaller tank and uses the cheapest grade of gas.  But  I knew beforehand, this car is not going to save me money, but instead give me that special (priceless) feeling when driving down the road.  In other words, its a gas guzzler. 

The car is in pretty good shape for being 25 years old and matches the condition represented by the dealer.  After filling up, I took it immediately to a smog test station and it passed the California Smog Test on the very first try.  It had only one owner prior to the dealer buying it and flipping it for a quick profit.  

Anyway, there is one area that I need to get checked out.  The steering is a bit loose, so I think some kind of steering system overhaul, alignment or suspension tuning is in order.  The car is quite driveable, its just not up to my standards for this kind of car.  The steering should be crisp and firm, with less than 3/4 inch of play.  But it is an older car with over 100K miles so it may be time for minor restoration.  Yep...I can see the $$$$$$ disappearing already..........

Velda in her new stall...poor CRV she is parked in the outside lot now.

Now, all I will need is to take it to the DMV for a Vehicle Verification inspection and I will be ready to get it fully registered on Wednesday.  Bought insurance over the weekend with Geico online and got my certificate printed immediately after payment.  Much cheaper than I thought for this old a car.

The car also has a name now.  Settled on Velda, since its a German car and a German girl's name is only appropriate.  Vanna in the LOS, Velda in California...how lucky can one guy get?  

Velda

The name Velda is a baby girl name.

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German Meaning: 
The name Velda is a German baby name. In German the meaning of the name Velda is: Power; rule.
American Meaning: 
The name Velda is an American baby name. In American the meaning of the name Velda is: Power; rule.
Teutonic Meaning: 
The name Velda is a Teutonic baby name. In Teutonic the meaning of the name Velda is: Inspired intelligence.