Toyota Driving Safety tips (mildly humerous)

January 27, 2010

Oops!

Do you drive a Toyota?  Are you checking your floor mat?  Spraying some WD-40 on your accelerator pedal?  It’s pretty wild here about the recal and the stoppage of sales for the Auto giant in te last few days.    The sales suspension and recall includes Toyota’s top-selling vehicle in North America, the Camry, for model years since 2007.  Also included are the 2009-2010 model year RAV4, Corolla and Matrix, the 2008-2010 model year Sequoia, the 2007-2010 model year Tundra, the 2005-2010 model year Avalon and the 2010 model year Highlander. 

I have thought, “What would I do if the accelerator got stuck while I was driving?”  I am the kind of guy that likes to be ready for anything, so I took it upon myself to dream up some situations in my head, in case Honda ever has a problem or I’m ridding with a friend in their Toyota.   Below are some different scenarios I played out in my mind. 

1. I’m on the Interstate and it sticks.  Well this is probably the safest place to be if it happens, Hey everyone else in Atlanta drives 95 miles an hour even with Georgia’s new super speeder law in effect.  I would just continue to drive the Interstate -285 (also known as the Atlanta Motor Speedway) until I ran out of gas and the car came to a stop.  There would be no damage of my car unless cars rammed into the back of me being impatient trying to get to work and home. This of course would not work during the Rush hour traffic times and I need to continue to think more. 

2. I’m in the suburbs and side streets of Metro Atlanta.   Driving around in the smaller streets and my accelerator sticks.  Hmmm, I immediately look for something not to large or hard and immoveable to slow my car down to a stop.  Lots of things came to mind like, small trees or shrubs grouped together that I could run over to create a decrease in inertia,  A neighbors above-ground swimming pool (it would also wash my car which is badly needed), or a line of mailboxes in a neighborhood that would slow me down one at a time.  This situation might have some minor damage to my car and to property so probably not the best solution either. 

All joking aside, I guess I just should take the following advice given by Toyota if my car’s accelerator happens to stick and send you into a panic. 

1. Press the brake, and shift the car into neutral. 

2. Slowing down using the brake pedal until you come to a complete stop. 

*Do not turn of the car off as you will lose your power-steering and will make it difficult to turn and you may end up off-road. 

I hope that none of you never actually find yourself in the situation to begin with, but if you do, don’t panic and remember those two rules above.  If you want to get on the evening news you can play out one of my scenarios, but I wouldn’t recommend it.


Tim Tebow On and Off the Field

January 26, 2010

As the end of the college football season came to a close just a few weeks ago.  All remaining college football fans begin to look toward the NFL draft that will take place in late April.  This is the last time they will get to talk college football in relation to the 2009 season.  Personally I go into a NCAAF coma that is only kept alive by the life-support of the occasional blurbs about my home team, the Georgia Bulldogs.

There has been much talk about Tim Tebow and his highly successful years as the Florida Gators quarterback and his next step into the NFL, negative talk that is.  My purpose is not to get into the specifics of the criticism, but only to say that the criticism is over-rated  for the most part in my humble opinion.   I question the source and slant of the criticism from many. Besides the fact of being one of the greatest college football players of all time, Tebow is also known for his strong faith in Jesus Christ.  His faith is mixed into every aspect of his football life such as  interviews and scriptures references on his eye paint.  In reality, Tebow is the same type of person on the field as he is off the field.  He doesn’t change his life to fit around his faith and visa versa.  I can not think of a better role model for young kids and teens to aspire to be.   Tebow works hard to keep his reputation as a Christian with integrity.  In the days where sports celebrities are dropping like flies in drug and steroid use and the recent fall of Tiger Woods in multiple occurences of marital infidelity, Tebow is a breath of fresh air.

Tim Tebow

The die-hard sports fans and critics can say that morals don’t matter on a football team, but that I believe is a lie and a cop-out given as an excuse to not like him because of his faith.  I say that because of two reasons, first, if you were the father of a college or pro athlete would you want your son or daughter to live the life style of Mark Maguire, Barry Bonds, or Tiger Woods?  Successful and rich, yes, but the lifestyle of drama I’m sure you would not wish on your own flesh and blood.  Secondly, the NFL teams that draft these players would rather take a great player who is not known for “off the field antics” over a great player who is known for perhaps getting into trouble from time to time.  These are there assets and they don’t want to have to worry about a player who causes trouble.  Unless you are Jerry Jones and Al Davis, who are known for picking the “bad guys”, but hey, they are in the minority.  Again if I asked you as a parent, would you rather have a son or daughter who are both successful in life, but one of them gets in trouble often, you have to bail them out of jail, constantly keep an eye on them to protect them, which would you choose?  Need I say more?

Yes, Tebow has some issues with his mechanics and perhaps with the NFL system that he hasn’t seen much of at Florida, but just watch come draft day, I will shave my head bald if Tebow is not taken in top 10 of the draft.  Personally, I’m just glad he is no longer a Florida Gator, since I am a Georgia Bulldog fan.  I can now get back to 100% hate for the Florida Gators instead of the 99% I had for them the last 4 years and I will enjoying hearing about his success in the NFL and his walk with Christ.

On a related note, I have also recently heard that Tim Tebow and his mother will have a 30 second commercial played during the Superbowl.  The commercial will have a Pro-life message and share a story from his mother’s past where she was advised by a doctor to terminate a complicated pregnancy.  She didn’t heed the advice and Tim Tebow was born.  The commercial cost 2.5 million and was paid for by several donors and sponsored by the Focus on the Family organization, lead by Dr. James Dobson.  The commercial has come under fire by womens’s groups and they are asking CBS to pull the ad.  The groups have resorted to name calling and denial of free speech to try and get their way.  So far CBS has not taken any action.  You can read more about it here.  http://backporch.fanhouse.com/2010/01/26/womens-groups-want-cbs-to-drop-tim-tebow-super-bowl-ad/


My Dog Has a Facebook

January 25, 2010

Ginger Weldon's Facebook

Yes, it’s true.  I had some extra time this afternoon after I got off work and what did I do with my extra 45 minutes, I created a Facebook for my dog.  It’s a big joke of course and I’m going to delete it soon.   I just thought it would add a little laugh to your day, some of you anyway. 

BUT, while we are on the subject, I was made aware that Facebook is getting younger and younger.  The social networking site was created for college students and has moved down into high school years back.   Legally you have to be 13 years old to have a Facebook, but that doesn’t stop anyone who wants to create an account.  All you have to do is lie about your birth year and you are in.   Even recently I have been made aware of some elementary school students who have a Facebook.  I think that is too young.

Many of the middle schoolers in our youth group have one or the other more immature Myspace.    I say that, because if you have both, which I do, you can tell a difference in the two by simply looking at the posts from friends.  I added a MySpace years back because it was a way to communicate with the students I work with.   Little did I know it would become a tool that would open my eyes to things unseen a church.  I had to learn how to deal with the things I saw.   I’ll admit I didn’t handle them well at first, micromanaging their every little blog and post.  Now, I try to use those times as teachable moments for the students I pastor and lead.  Some take it well, while others don’t.  As the popularity of Facebook grows, more and more of the Myspace friends cross over to Facebook, I am about convinced that I’m ready to delete the MySpace account anyway.

A recent report put out by Kaiser Family Foundation just in the last week has shown where on average students are spending more time on media than 5 years ago when the study first ran.  You can look at the full report here and download (http://learningmylines.blogspot.com/2010/01/finally-latest-on-kids-and-media.html) a brief summary of it from Walt Mueller, who I consider to be one of the leading people in youth culture today.   You could branch off with several discussions from this article, so if you have something to add please feel free to leave some comments.  I just think we need to draw up some borders with respect to media use and limit the age of those who use it.  As a parent,  I make sure that I have rules in place before the issues ever come up so that I know how to answer the questions and comments posed by my children.  What ever happened to playing on the playground?

Well in conclusion, you can either add my dog to your Facebook page or not I don’t care.  She already has 7 friends now and a few pictures.


Saint and Colts in the Superbowl, so let’s talk Favre?

January 24, 2010

Favre going down!

Just finished watching the NFC throw down between the Saints and Vikings.  Good game that went into over time.  The Vikings lost the game I think just as much as the Saints won it.  Fumbles and interceptions were everywhere.    I was watching the post game breakdown on EPSN and after the initial highlights of the game, where do the sportscasters go to?    “Will Brett Favre retire or not.”  Way to steal the spotlight from the Saints and waste it on a question that no one will know the answer for another 6-7 months.  You just had to be the first one to ask didn’t you. 

Just goes to show you that we are a drama driven society.  We can’t enjoy our day without a little bit of drama.  In the post-game interview with Favre it was only about 4-5 questions into the interview and someone asks him if he will retire.  His answer was just to talk it over with the family and then make a decesion.   I will have a poll up soon where you can make your prediction on who will win the Superbowl, but one thing I won’t have is a poll about whether or not Brett Favre will retire or not.  So you will have to rely on the folks at ESPN for your poll results about.   They probably have a poll up now!


Can You Hear Me Now?

January 20, 2010

I stayed up last night to watch the election results fom the Mass. senate race for the replacement of the late Sen. Kennedy.  I have to admit I am pleased with the results and the fallout that will insue for the democrats and the issue of healthcare.  I listened to all the commentary from reporters about what Obama can choose to do now with his healthcare reform.  Let’s see how well you know our president and what do you think he will do in relation to healthcare plans for the country.  I hope the senate and house will both take from this that they need to listen to the people and not continue to be “tone deaf” in their governing of the people.