Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Gas Station Brings Shoplifters to Justice with Youtube Channel

I recently discovered a channel on Youtube called Gas Station Encounters which is a channel run by a gas station employee who has taken a stand against people who try to steal from his store. The gas station has very good security cameras which they monitor closely in real time so they are able to catch shoplifters who try to pocket items without paying.

Once they are caught, the employee confronts them and makes them pay. Sometimes they charge them more for trying to steal. Sometimes they just confiscate everything they stole and kick them out of the store. Often they follow them out to get their license plate number in order to help the police identify them.

The best part is, since it is all recorded by the surveillance cameras, they have the whole thing on tape. They then take the footage and create a video with it including funny play by play commentary for the whole thing. Then they upload it to Youtube for everyone to see.

The videos are very well done and the creator is quite funny and talented. Sometimes he even makes original songs about what is happening in the video. They capture a surprising about of criminals trying to steal, but they also catch a lot of other stuff that happens around the store, for example store mishaps, people illegally dumping garbage, and pretty much anything interesting that happens to get caught on tape.

As someone who likes to see justice get served, Gas Station Encounters has quickly become one of my favorite Youtube channels. In a time where it can he hard to catch shoplifters and have them actually be arrested, this channel is actively doing something about it. They catch people in the act and are not afraid to confront them about it.

Usually the owner is able to get their license plate number, but even when they get away, they are still caught on camera and they end up going on Youtube for hundreds of thousands of people to see what they have done. If you like to see criminals getting caught red handed and confronted for their actions, and you like funny videos, I highly recommend checking out Gas Station Encounters!

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Ozark Season 2 Review

I just finished up season 2 of the show Ozark and overall it was very good! It's one of those shows where anything can happen and usually it is unexpected so it keeps you on the edge of your seat. I enjoyed season 1 and I found season 2 to be just as good as the first season.

This season Marty and Wendy try to set up a new casino as a way to launder money for the cartel who they have been in trouble with since things went awry in the first season. It turns out to be a lot harder than expected and there are all kinds of issues along the way. Their goal is to ultimately get out with their family intact and hopefully start a new life but it seems like they just keep getting deeper and deeper into trouble.

In terms of the writing, I find the show to be at times a little over the top, like they are making drastic things happen to shock the audience. It can seem a little unbelievable, but it certainly makes for an entertaining show. They tend to kill off characters pretty fast which can be risky but so far it seems to be working out ok.

The characters and actors are stars of the show. Jason Bateman and Laura Linney are fantastic as Marty and Wendy, as is Julia Garner as Ruth. They all have very intense and emotional scenes and they pull them off wonderfully. The kids and supporting actors all do a good job as well.

At the end of the season the future of what the Byrde family will do is uncertain, but Ozark has been renewed for a 3rd season so we have more excitement to look forward to! Overall I highly recommend Ozark if you like shows with suspense and drama. Seasons 1 and 2 are available now on Netflix.

Monday, January 21, 2019

A Series of Unfortunate Events Season 3 Review

I just finished up the 3rd and final season of A Series of Unfortunate Events and overall it was very enjoyable! This season wraps up the final books of the series with 7 episodes. If you liked the first 2 seasons, this season is very similar in style and tone as the Baudelaire orphans continue to try to escape Count Olaf and find peace and safety.

We continue to learn more about the VFD organization and meet new characters along the way. We also see the return of many characters from the first 2 seasons. One of the most noticeable differences is baby sister Sunny who is growing up and is now a toddler. She can now speak and help out her siblings even more than before. Some of my other favorite characters besides Sunny include Esme and Carmelita.

The visual stylings are one of the best parts about this show. They create a fictional world that looks different than what we are used to seeing in most shows. In this season events take place in a snow covered mountain, an underwater submarine, a fancy hotel, and a remote island.

For wrapping up the series, I felt the end of the second to last episode really could have been the finale. It just had the right feel and would have been a good place to wrap it up. There was one more episode after it that was still pretty good but somehow felt a little out of place or unnecessary.

I was still left with some questions at the end of the finale, but overall I was satisfied with the ending. Lemony constantly warned us that this was not a story with a happy ending, but without giving too much away, I think the Baudelaire orphan's situation ended up better than expected.

Overall I highly recommend watching A Series of Unfortunate Events. It is definitely one of my favorite shows available on Netflix.

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Should you use shopping cart wipes to sanitize your cart at the store?

If you have been to a grocery store recently, chances are you have noticed a stand with sanitizing wipes located at the entrance near the carts. Stores put these here so customers can use them to wipe down the shopping carts in an effort to clean them in hopes of reducing the level of germs or bacteria. It sounds like a good idea, but is it effective and is it even worth it?

Like most public things that get touched a lot by people, shopping carts can accumulate bacteria. While the sanitary wipes can help reduce the amount of bacteria present on the cart, I would argue that they are kind of pointless when you look at the big picture.

In theory the wipes clean the shopping cart so when you touch the handle, you do not pick up the germs. That would be great if the shopping cart handle was the only thing you were going to touch when you are out and about. But the fact is, you will inevitably touch a lot more things other than the shopping cart handle while you are out shopping.

For example, think about the handles on all the doors to the refrigerated and frozen sections. Are you going to wipe those down too? What about the divider at checkout and the credit card swiper? What about all the grocery items that have been touched by other people during stocking and will be touched by more people at checkout and bagging. Then there are any door handles you may have to open on your way home, and don't forget things like your keys and phone that likely have bacteria on them as well.

When you realize how many different things you are going to touch while you are out and about, it makes just cleaning one item (the cart) kind of ineffective. Yes, maybe you will slightly reduce the bacteria on one thing, but unless you are going to go around sanitizing every single thing you touch, it is not really worth it. Since it is not practical to sanitize everything, a better solution would be to just make sure you wash your hands when you get home.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Squeaky Bed – How to Stop a Box Spring From Squeaking

My bed is about 10 years old and while it is still in good condition, I noticed it had begun to make a squeaking noise when getting in and out or even when just shifting positions. Squeaky noises tend to bother me so I decided to see what could be done to fix the problem.

At first I thought it was the metal frame on the bottom so I took everything off including the mattress and box spring. I took some oil and applied it to all the moving parts like the hinges and the wheels. Then I put it all back together. Unfortunately it was still squeaking even after oiling the frame.

I decided to try to narrow down where the squeak was coming from. I noticed the mattress was not making any noise but the box spring did make some squeaking noise when I was moving it around and putting pressure on it. There are a lot of metal pieces inside the box spring so I figured this is probably where the noise is coming from.

The problem with the box spring though, at least for mine, was that it was sealed on all sides. The bottom has a material over it that is stapled on. I figured it was still worth trying to fix so I ended up pulling the material away from the staples to open it up so the inside could be reached. Note: be careful when working around the staples because they can be sharp.

Once open, I noticed some of the wood planks were not connected together as well as they should have been. Staples were used to connect the wood and some of them were coming out. So I took a hammer and hammered them back into place so they were secure.

Then I took the oil and went around applying it to any place where the metal would be rubbing against other metal. There were quite a few places like this so it took a little while to get all of it. Once everything had been oiled, I put the fabric back in place. I tried re-stapling it, but the staples would not go in very well so I ended up just taping it back in place.

Next I put everything back in place and tested it out. Thankfully the squeaking noise was gone! There was still a little noise that could be heard from the inner workings of the box spring, but overall it was much better and no longer had the annoying squeaking.

If you have been experiencing a similar issue with your bed, I recommend trying the same solution by oiling the frame and box spring. It takes a little work but it is a lot cheaper than buying a whole new bed!

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Websites Publishing People's Personal Information – Lack of Privacy with Modern Technology

If you have Googled yourself recently, you my have been surprised how much of your personal information is online without your consent. While we have control over what we put on the internet such as pictures, videos, and our personal opinions, we do not have control over everything that is out there including public records.

There are many websites these days that specialize in gathering all your public information and publishing it online. This included things such as your current address, previous address, family members, age, phone number, email address, car you drive, and more. Even if you are careful about not putting your personal information out there, it can still be found and published on these sites.

If you find your information on one of these sites and you don't want it on there, sometimes they have an option to opt-out or submit a request to have it removed. However, this is usually not very easy and requires some effort to find. Often the websites will tease an option to have it removed and then bring you to a payment page where they say you have to pay them to have your information removed from their website. This tactic seems like blackmail, trying to get money from people who never wanted their privacy compromised in the first place.

These website say they get their information from public records that are available to everyone. This may be the case, but these website are digging up people's personal information and making it even more easily available online for their own profit. I believe there needs to be more regulations put in place to protect people against this sort of thing.

It can be a matter of personal safety. For example if someone knows your name and they have a general idea of where you are from, it is pretty easy for them to do a quick search and find exactly where you live. They can find out more of your personal information such as who is related to you and where they live.

As of now there does not seem to be much attention being given to this subject of privacy. In the age we are living in now with technology, there are certainly a lot of benefits, but we are also sacrificing our privacy as a result. The simple act of owning a smart phone means giving up a lot of privacy. By carrying around a phone pretty much everything is documented from where you are, to who you contact, to what you look up.

Some say in these times, we can no longer expect privacy and we just have to embrace it and put ourselves out there. Personally I still think privacy is important and we have to make sure it does not get compromised.

I recommend doing a search on yourself by name and location to see which websites are publishing your personal information. If you care about privacy, you may want to contact some of the websites that pop up and request that your personal information be removed.