Monday, May 14, 2012

A couple of comments to a few of my reviews on Amazon. Priceless...

May 14, 2012 8:19:27 AM PDT
Below is a comment and a response back and forth on my review on Amazon of the Vitamix Blender. 


MacGuffin says:

Processing difficult things on a low variable speed for any length of time is precisely what causes the overload protector to trip. You can run the machine on a low speed for a long time if you're dealing, e.g., with a thin liquid.

The "ramming rod" (I can see you really familiarized yourself with the instructional media) is called a "tamper," BTW and you can make really excellent nut butter--including almond--by following the instructions in that pesky manual. And incidentally, the fan only kicks in on HIGH (as described in, you guessed it, the manual).

Mark Says:

" called a tamper" Who cares? Yes, I know that processing things on low is precisely what causes an overload... Do you know why that is? Do you know what takes place? I do.
Do you know why I say it needs thicker windings to process things on low? It is because at lower speeds, and higher torque, the motor would have to carry more current. More current requires thicker wire. Hence my suggestion of a setting for lower speeds with thicker wires.. Heavier gauge wires are for higher torque applications. Try to understand the concepts in my review, before you trash me. I did read the manual. However, I do also understand how electric motors work. When you use the tamper, you are actually compressing the blend material and forcing down into the motor. A risky proposition for such a high speed, low torque, high armature winding motor. If you stall it, you stand a good chance of fusing some of the windings, and or having a melt down. 

MacGuffin Says:

I care...and you don't like being challenged, do you? And yeah, believe it or not, there are others who know what you do ("know," that is). And I've been using these blenders AND--believe it or not--"compressing the blend material and forcing down into the motor" (in actuality, TOWARDS the bottom of the CONTAINER given that the motor is sealed in the base of the unit and never touches the container or its contents--SUCH a burden possessing that punctilious understanding of language required of a technical editor) since 1988 and quite a bit of that "blend material" has been frozen solid. Only once, in all that time, has the overload protector tripped due to my really having tried to process 'way too much frozen "blend material" with too little liquid and given that the aforementioned protector tripped, no damage was done to the motor. I really, REALLY doubt that Vitamix gets many returns (and I'm not saying that they don't ship a defective unit now and then) due to "fusing some of the windings, and or having a melt down."

 MacGuffin Takes Mark to Amazon Review Court and pleads a case against him for a faulty review:

Cue the Peoples Court Music..... 

Vitamix is here...

Below is another set of comments for my review on an Eton Wind up emergency radio...

M. Mason says:
I'm a bit surprised that you call yourself the "gadget guy" and are a "top reviewer" and you didn't even bother to pay attention to exactly how long you cranked the radio, how long the charge lasted ("hours" is a pretty vague term), how long you left it on, how long you left it in the sun, and just didn't feel like completing the experiment. You should buy a watch...and use it.

I only bothered to comment because contrary to 291 other people (I have no idea what they were seeing here), I did not find your review very helpful at all. Just some vague estimates without much detail.

Mark Fellows says:
Okay then, feel free to disregard my review..... You can buy it, and slip on your lab coat and glasses, and do a consumer reports style review, and really show me... You are right, I guess I am being a little arrogant when I call myself the "Gadget Guy". I guess that is just my conceit coming out. I need to really spend some time evaluating myself, so see where my flaws are. Thank you for giving me a reality check....

Marks Comments about what M. Mason said.....

Psst, if 291 people like the review, and find it helpful and you don't, it MIGHT be you...

Just saying.............

Radio is below...
The Little Eton 160 emergency radio

Right after posting this, I realized that just yesterday, I left this radio out to let it charge in the sun, and forgot it, and it rained today.  Hard.... It may be ruined!


The Eton hardly got any water in it after a day of sitting out in the hard rain.  

M. Mason would want to know exactly how hard the rain was.  Justin Berk says up to 1"/Hour.

M. Mason  would want to know exactly how long it sat in the rain?  Approximately 8 hours...

M. Mason would want to know how much is "Hardly any" Approximately three, 1 mm droplets..

I let it dry out and it worked fine!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Hello My Dearest....

I get junk mail solicitations all the time.  You can always tell when it is this type of email.  It usually starts out, "Hello my dearest.  I saw your profile on Pbase, and would like the chances to get to know you better..."

They usually say that "love is all that matters, and looks mean nothing"

I have to say, that would turn most single guys off.

When they say that, guys are thinking, that is because the sender is ugly.

Now I usually just delete these, as they are always the same, but I told my wife, that these young "women", if they are in fact women, would get more emails back, if they just sent an initial picture in the first email.

I have to say, that I am liking the new style I got just this morning.  If women want to start sending me pics of themselves, I would be happy to receive pics of women in form fitting dresses and such.

Now this particular "woman", if it is not in fact a guy sending pics pretending to be a woman, said that I should send a reply back, so she could "send me pics of her"

I can only imagine what kind of pics, she would send me, and as a guy, I am tempted to send a reply, so see the pics.

Of course I won't, but something primal wants me to see the pics.

However, this one says she "loves me"

I am going to post this pic to show you guys, but I have hidden her face(which is also pretty, in case you are wondering), and email, just in case it REALLY is JUST for me.  I think I should respect her privacy.....

I have to say, whether I intend to follow up on this, WHICH I DON"T.  I do like the current format, and am hoping for a new trend in junk mail..

I can always use more pics of women I don't know to look at....

Keep it coming ladies....

Mark :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Fat Between the Ears: A Major Cause of Childhood Obesity!

I was sent the following email from my website email address.

 "I came by your site today and wanted to make sure I had a working email for you. I also work for a blog,, and based on some of your posts, I thought you might like to stop by! Today, we’ve just released an infographic on the impact McDonald’s is having on children’s nutrition, and what’s being done to make the Happy Meal a healthy meal."

"Since childhood obesity has more than tripled since 1979, it’s clear why Happy Meals are coming under fire.  Do you think the move to offer fruit instead of fries is going far enough? I’d love it if you’d come by our site to weigh in, and feel free to share the graphic with your readers if they would find it interesting as well."

Is it clear?  Is it really???? 

 What the lawyers would have you believe..

Kid + McDonald's= Obese kid 

 The real formulas that where lost from ages ago...

Kid + McDonald's + Bicycle riding = Skinny kid

Kid+ Constant Video Games= Obese Kid

Kid + McDonald's + Involved Parents + Playing Outdoors= Skinny kid

Kid + McDonald's + NON Active Parents + Activity Outdoors= Skinny kid

Kid + Eating Cooked Dinner at Home+ School Sports Program= Skinny kid 

Kid + Mom or Dad slices up Fruit= Skinny Kid

Kid+ Less Soda+ Active= Skinny kid 

There are really lots of complex formulas. Above are but a few....

Sometimes genetics does play a heavy factor with some people, however I do not believe that is what we are talking about here, so I have kept my comments in line with the original blog. 

 My Comment Response....

This blog actually says the EXACT OPPOSITE of what I believe. 

Which is, perhaps parents should take some responsibility for what their kids eat and do..... 

McDonald's wasn't much better for you in my day.  They still had hamburgers, french fries,  and fountain soda, but they just didn't call it a "happy meal"

In fact, on the rare occasion we went there, that is what I ate.

It isn't that I didn't want to go there more often, it is just that my mom wouldn't let me....

Often times a Big Mac, and large fry.  Maybe in my early teens, I would order a 20 piece Chicken Nuggets, with a hot fudge Sunday for desert, washed down with a large Root Beer. 


Of course after, I did go outside and ride my bike.

Even though we had McDonald's I didn't get to go there that often.

 My mom cooked me lunch.  I ate most of my meals at home.  Either my mom would make me something, or I ate whatever was in the fridge.

 I lot of the time, lunch was either a Grilled Cheese Sandwich, or a nice Steak Um, yet some how, miraculously, I wasn't obese, and most of the kids I knew weren't.

I also didn't sit around playing video games.  I went outside and rode my bicycle, climbed trees, and all sorts of other activities.
Every once in a while, my friends mom would tell him he was "watching too much TV, and needed to go outside".....

Try this with your kids. I bet it is just as effective of weight control as in my day!

Of course, not just kids are obese.

So are their adult parents....

How about trying to go outside with your kids?

Go  for a walk with them....  Ride bikes as a family....

Stop blaming someone else for all of yours, and your children's problems, and take responsibility.

Leave McDonald's alone!

On the rare occasion I go there, I don't want to have to order some "McFruity nuggets"....
Here is another idea and I must warn you, it is RADICAL, and  REVOLUTIONARY!!!

1. Buy some fruit at the store

2. Slice it up

3. Give it to your kids...

4. After doing so, don't take your kids to McDonald's....

Or do you think this is some complex procedure that only a business like McDonald's can manage?

Here is proof that the "active kid diet and exercise routine" works....

Try typing "obese kid riding a bike" into Google images.

Are you finding anything? 

I didn't either..... 

No pictures of obese kids riding bicycles? 

I find that strange, don't you?

Now, let's switch it up and try a different phrasing...

After all, search engines can be wacky things!

Just to switch it up, try "fat kid riding bicycle"

Still nothing eh? 

I don't see a single one of those portly kids riding a bike. Do you?
Now type in "kid riding a bike" into Google images..

You find Tons of pictures of skinny kids riding bicycles.  Kid after kid, after kid, after kid.....

Damn!  Lots of skinny kids riding bicycles here....

Why do you think that is????

Which do you think came first?

A. The skinny kid

B. The bicycle riding....

Or were they simultaneous??? 

I haven't done any scientific studies, but I bet these two activities are some how intrinsically linked...

Is this the opinion you wanted? Or did you just want people to comment who agree with your side of things?

Below is the original blog to which I was asked to respond.

Stop whining, and get riding...

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Hillbilly Journeyman in training

Like many people my age, I did in fact watch the old 80s show, The Dukes of Hazard growing up.

With a Facebook friend recently telling me of a sink hole that developed in the road near my home town, and me cracking a joke, that as Get-us-burg-yians, it probably called for a Dukes Of Hazard moment, I had to break down, and tell the fact that I have in fact, actually jumped a car.

True, it wasn't a cool ass Dodge Charger with a 01 painted on the side, but a 1972 for Pinto in primer(so it would be ready to paint.)

This was not my Pinto, this is shown just for illustration purposes.

 Mine was actually much cooler, with grey primer, and gold painted mag wheels, and a killer radio, with an equalizer, that jammed ZZ Top...

OK it wasn't 15 feet in the air, but maybe 2 feet.

Still, it was pretty cool,  after the fact.

I guess you had to be there....

See, I like to make fun of myself, and other folk of the red neck persuasion, but you know what?  I trained as a journeyman hillbilly for most of my life, so I have earned the right to poke fun.

I say, "I jumped a Ford pinto" and I should need say no more...

That should be credentials enough, for even the most discriminating hill folk.

The world was  a much larger place in those days.

I had a love of fun in those days, just like in today's age.

Except now a days, fun is reading a good book, whereas in those times, driving a car in the field, and doing burnouts, and doughnuts was were the fun was at...

In the country, we start our training early. My first motorcycle

This is my brother on my 50cc motorcycle with my pet Pheasant Fred.

Yes, I did in fact have a pet Pheasant named Fred.  He started following me one day on my 50cc Hog, and later would walk me up to the school bus in the morning, and met me up there at the right time in the evening when I came home, and walk me down the driveway.

After my brother badgered me one day, I finally let him kill it, so he could stuff, and mount it.

I feel bad to this day about it.

It feels like a betrayal.

Especially because he stuck it in the freezer, forgot about it, and my mom eventually threw out the carcass.

All for nothing.

I betrayed him.

I am sorry Fred, I really am.  I caved.  I should have had more character.

Even in the 6th grade, I knew what was important, BAD ASS cars..

Me around 16.  I liked to see if I could fit into the high chair, and my peps thought it was funny. Note the mullet...

Me at graduation(17).. Hill folk don't need no stinking pants when it's hot out!

So, much ado about me jumping the car.

See we were on one of our many trips through my mom's fields while she was out of town.

We did the standard allotment of doughnuts in the field.

We did the requirement of getting the car to go as fast as we could and then pulled the emergency brake around a turn...

We did all of the required car in the field procedures a good hill person is required to, before moving on to other activities..

we got bored at around 2am....

My friend decided he wanted to drive on the road.  It was a nice little trip, until coming back down my mom's 150 yard driveway, the horn got stuck on.

Imagine you are a high school kid, and you are doing something you shouldn't be while your mom is out of town, and just to let everyone know you are both a bad kid, and an idiot, the car horn blows the entire length down the driveway so ALL of your neighbors can know what you are up to....

Me: "quick get down to the house, NO, go back up the driveway, NO get down to the garage..."

My friend had an idea....

He wisely reasoned that if he jumped the car on this dirt mound my mom had half way down the driveway, that it might jar loose the contacts that were making the horn stick on.

He did, and we where air born, but instead of yelling "yehaw!" like on the Dukes of Hazard, I was yelling.... "what the fxxx do you think you are doing!?"





...and we did it.  We were airborne for a good 10 feet, about 2 feet off the ground....

After our short flight, the transmission was leaking anti freeze, but the horn was still on.

My friend went back to plan B, driving down into our garage.


Fuck!!! neighbors are going to know it's me!

"I'm pretty strong, I will just reach down, and rip the battery cable off the battery"


What I ripped loose was the radiator hose, and somehow I pointed the hose, with hot anti freeze right at my face.(I am guessing the coolant was at about 175 F, as I didn't have the thermostat in the engine block, however, IT WAS HOT..)

"AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!" I go screaming running toward the house, but half way there, my face cools, and I have time to reason the situation out...

I reason, that that was quite a racket, and my neighbors probably might call the cops, so I better call them and let them know 'what is going on', and that everything is okay.

I will put their minds at ease.... 

They need not bother the good police officers.

I imagine since I have just woken up my neighbors,  they are probably frantically sitting on the edge of their bed anxiously awaiting the return call from the state police telling them everything is okay, once they have checked out the situation...

So I call my neighbor... 

The phone rings about 7 times and at that point I realize I actually woke him up, but I am committed, so I have to complete the call.

A groggy voice finally answers weakly 12, or maybe 13 rings in...

"emmm(clears crap out of throat) hellooo.... "

I say: "did you hear that?"

He says: "um, hear what, I was sleeping?"

So instead of being smart, and hanging up(see we had no caller ID in those days), I stupidly recount EVERYTHING that happened, or a slight embellishment of the facts.

I leave out the part about us joy riding my pinto through the field, and invent a story about me working on a desperate friends car that is broke down...

I am up late prepping for bible school, and a friend calls in need..

Being the responsible guy I am, I decide to fix his car.  

While I am carefully diagnosing the problem, the car horn gets stuck on, and my scatter brained friend decides to throw me aside, get in the car, start it, drive it up the driveway, turn around, race down the driveway at 50, jumping a dirt mound in an effort to try to get the car horn unstuck.....

I apologize to by neighbor, and assure him I gave my friend a good talking to for his idiocy.

The next day, after the hangover wore off, we fixed the car, and the next night, HOT DAMN, we were back at the field races.....