Category Archives: Uncategorized

Possible REDEMPTION

To Amber & Ariel:

Words alone are insufficient to describe the mortification & self-hatred I felt after I slapped Ariel…In that moment, I realized I had broken the PRIMARY part of “the CODE”…the ESSENCE of it, if you will, that I had been, & am still, expounding to those who seek a calmer, less stressful Life.  IMMEDIATELY, with that simple & devastating act, I became A LIAR,  A HYPOCRITE & A COWARD…….in MY self-evaluation…..and ‘something more’ in your ‘re-assessment’ of me & my character.

The following IS NOT an excuse for my behavior!!!  It is an explanation of my mind-set just prior to ‘the incident’…believe it or not, a hug was the precursor here – yes, A HUG – the reason for which has been lost due to the intensity of what followed…somewhere before the hug, things went sideways when Ariel made a disparaging facial expression that I had seen her perform to the BACK of EVERYONE including her mom-Amber, her dad-Steve, Mima, her Aunt Vicky, Aunt Leslie, her brothers & sister. Frankie, fellow school-mates, her teachers, etc., etc.  In retrospect, I found that I had ‘programmed’ myself to slap her if she EVER did THAT ‘to-my-FACE’…I had just recently lost my BEST ‘gal pal’ of almost 20 yrs, Margaret, & was commiserating in a couple shots of Tequila, so I wasn’t in the best of moods.  Her DIRECT DISRESPECT triggered my ‘pre-programmed’ response & before I knew it, THE DEED WAS DONE!!!  

Post-incident, I forced myself into exile for several reasons:  1) to remove myself from friends & family – a kind of Penance; 2) to regroup, reassess, reinforce & realign myself with ‘the CODE’; 3) to gradually reintegrate myself into  an uncaring society – so it would be challenging to incorporate ‘the Code’;  and 4) to ULTIMATELY rejoin my friends & family and expose myself as – well – a truly flawed HUMAN!!!  So, basically, I treated myself like a vicious, uncontrollable dog who needed  SEVERE ATTITUDE ADJUSTMENT!!! – exclude it from the pack, re-evaluate training methods, adjust training to reflect new goals, reintroduce to the general public BEFORE trying to reconnect with former associates…yeah, that was ‘the Program’……!!!

Due to present circumstances, I am compelled to reveal myself prematurely!  In doing this, though I feel I have NO RIGHT to do so, I AM ASKING  BOTH OF YOU FOR YOUR FORGIVENESS!!!  And, PLEASE BELIEVE ME when I say….I WILL NEVER AGAIN EXHIBIT THAT KIND OF BEHAVIOR – FOR AS LONG AS I LIVE!!!!!!    

VERY Sincerely YOURS – Charly K. Warren

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SURPRISE ~ eBay Listings Are Producing Sales

Well, looks like in the thrill and relief of the full reinstatement of my eBay account, I listed too many DVDs from my collection, too closely together – time-wise – that is; you know, one right after another.  Next, the quick buying response to so many of my listings caught me off-guard.  So, I also went through my shipping label funds via the eBay-USPS connection just as quickly.  I even had to contact some of the buyers to tell them I was processing their items by hand and there might be a slight delay in delivery time.  Fortunately, all deliveries were timely & buyer feedback, so far, has been favorable.

By this time, it was also fairly obvious that I had over-listed!  So, I deleted a few of my listings to make sure I could handle the remaining sales & buyers properly.

Part of the problem is payments to PayPal take 21 days before the buyers’ funds are accessible.  Also, PayPal & eBay want you to develop a good reputation dealing with themselves and your buyers – you know, get some experience, accrue good feedback ratings, manage your accounts well, etc. – before they allow quicker access.  Pretty cool in the long run – the system almost forces you to improve if you just stick with it – all you have to do is listen & adjust to your buyers’ feedback.

Actually, REAL COOL!!  Why?!?  ‘Cuz that just happens to be my MAIN motto – “Improvise, Adapt, OVERCOME!”

There were 29 total listings that sold.  Here are photos of some of those items.

Mahalo & Aloha, Charly

Let me know what you think – leave a comment!  I’d really appreciate it, ‘cuz you’d be helping me KEEP my MAIN MOTTO – dig it!!

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House Was Burglarized While We Slept

I haven’t said anything about this before because it has been a ‘bone of contention’ since it happened. 

Sometime during the wee hours of 21 JAN 2014, someone broke into the house and stole everything they could easily get their little grubby hands on.

The prime suspect was, and still is, the boyfriend of my friend’s nurse.  Why him?!?  Well – this is how STUPID criminals are – she asked if he could come in while she finished her morning routine of 20 JAN.  After my friend gave the OK, he came in and was polite & congenial as he stood surveying the premises.  Making conversation, I asked him what he did for a living.  He replied that he ‘found’ things at yard sales, etc. that he could resell for a profit such as electronic items, knick-knacks, etc. and was usually fairly busy in that pursuit.  That was probably the big ‘tip-off’, yet, being fairly naive about such matters, I didn’t give it a second thought. 

About 5:30 AM on 21 JAN, I heard a suspicious sound, like glass shattering, and awoke to check things out.  When I got to the main living area, I was shocked to see that the house had ‘been tossed’ and the place was a minor disaster area.  I notified my friend of the circumstances and searched the rest of the house to see if anything else was missing.  Then, I got my Sony HDR-CX290 handycam and took some pictures of the aftermath. 

My friend has 2 Dobermans that were confined to his bedroom, preventing them from their primary night-time duties of household patrol & protection.  When they alerted him to the situation, he simply ‘turned them off’ believing that, for whatever reason, they were unjustified in their response.  Their barking woke me at the time, but hearing my friend, I promptly ignored them, gave it no further thought & went back to sleep – until I heard ‘the sound’.

My friend accosted me, saying that, since I’m a dog trainer, I should have known by the dogs’ tone that something was wrong and should have investigated, then – in other words, I was to blame!!  He is paralyzed from the neck down and has been wheelchair-bound for the past 35+ yrs., is frail & in poor general health, so I didn’t argue – but, let’s get this straight – I didn’t like my integrity or loyalty being questioned.  Also, I think he SHOULD know me better than that, since we’ve been friends from the early 1980s and I’ve NEVER done anything for him to doubt me or my intentions during all that time. 

That evening, in a ‘knee-jerk’ reaction, he borrowed a GUN from another friend assuming that I would ‘handle it’ for him.  I DON’T like the presence of guns – probably because I am thoroughly familiar with their proper use & am an excellent shot – loose in the household, so I told him he should let someone else ‘handle it’ for him.  Pissed off, he mumbled something inflammatory & derogatory to me, then passed it to another household member for safe-keeping.

Since then, things have been strained, to say the least, and I now find myself in need of other lodging.  So, I have a new quest…I’ll get to that LATER…ImageImageImageImageImageImageSo, what was taken?

Photo #1 – broken window that woke me; #2 – misc. knick-knacks; #3 – 60″ Plasma HDTV weighing +/- 150 lbs, so we believe a crew was used; #4 – different angle of #3; #5 – computer tower, keyboard w/’mouse’ , 27″ color monitor; #6 – misc. knick-knacks.  Are we right in our assessment of the perpetrator??  You be the judge…!!

Off to the Races With eBay…

Well, it seems that I have resolved any issues eBay had with my account.  Presently, I am selling most of my DVD collection – 197 titles in all – of which I have managed to list 34, so far.  I have encountered my first ‘official’ seller’s snag – a buyer wants to retract his winning bid – and I must arrange the Resolution through eBay’s channels.  My ‘baptism-under-fire’, so to speak.  And, due to financial constraints, I am unable to ship via the eBay USPS postage system and must process orders by hand. 

Buyers were contacted to solicit their cooperation in obtaining their shipping addresses so I could expedite their orders and most responded quickly with my assertion that I would mail their DVD in the morning.

Here are photos of SOLD dvds…ImageImageImageImage

Here is the link if you want to check out my offerings…

http://my.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?MyEbay&gbh=1

 

Here is the link to my other blog…

 http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret?id=chakawakahi

 

Thanks for your kind attention, Mahalo & Aloha, Charly

Leave a comment – to help me “Improvise, Adapt, OVERCOME”

 

Ducks surround Snowy Egret’s perch

At a local park called ‘Riverwalk’ here in Bakersfield, a Snowy Egret was poised on a pond rock surveying the water for possible prey. When a group of foraging ducks floated too close to it’s vantage point, the Egret retired to less crowded waters.

p.s. Apologies for the shaky video, I was taken by surprise…ENJOY!!

eBay Suspension & Reinstatement…again!

For the past couple of months, I’ve been dealing with ‘security issues’ with my eBay account.  Early in MAR, my account was suspended for ‘suspicious activity’ due to outdated or improper ID.  I submitted the required information via fax at a local Fed Ex outlet & waited for a response.  After 2 weeks without a reply, I contacted eBay via phone to get things moving.  I was told that they did not receive any of my data and I should resend it, which I did immediately!  I used the same fax office and received confirmation from eBay just after the fax was sent, noting it could take up to 3 days to verify my info.

I went about other business as usual, relieved that the situation would soon be resolved.  Soon is right!  The next day, I got an e-mail from eBay saying that all was well and I had been reinstated to full former status.  They thanked me for my understanding & patience stating they considered the matter closed. 

Late last week, elated at my renewed ‘status’, I promptly proceeded to list my DVD collection – 197 titles in all!  Trouble was, my account had a monthly limit of 10 listings plus an income ceiling of $1K.  In my joyful haste, I listed 27 DVDs…and the system ‘crashed’.  Suddenly, I was locked out, prior listings were deleted and my account was red-flagged, AGAIN!!  In my eBay message area, I found ANOTHER notice of suspension with a new issue – another account, associated with both eBay & PayPal, possibly connected to my existing account. 

Not wanting to deal with another fax, I called Customer Service to explain my predicament:  Yes, I had another account.  Since I hadn’t used it in over 2 yrs., I had deleted it – or so I thought.  Anyway, I’m new to tech and, bottom-line, I did not disconnect that account.  So, what could I do now to rectify my dilemma? 

After hearing my story, an extremely helpful operator went about setting things right – on his own!  (Apologies, I don’t remember his name.)  He put me on ‘hold’ and, checking back every few minutes, was done reconnecting my old account with my new account in about 20 minutes.  Apparently, you can have more than one eBay account, they just have to be ‘synched’.  Just as he was about to sign off, he noticed one last item – my original monthly listing & income limits were still in place.  He asked if I wanted to increase them and of course I said ‘yes’!  In a matter of moments I was approved & the new monthly limits were increased to 100 listings & $5K in revenue.  THANK YOU!!! 

Day before yesterday, back to the computer for listing and relisting.  I successfully listed 28 multi-disc DVDs to start.  (I’ll be listing the rest at 25/day – it gets a little monotonous to do more.)  Out of curiosity, when I finished my listings I checked my ‘sales’ area.  Lo & behold, I had already made 3 sales!!

Not fully prepared for that quick of a response, I scrambled to the nearest Office Depot and got some bubble mailers & self-stick mailing labels.  Back at the house, I bought postage online from the USPS, printed the shipping labels and packed the DVDs in the bubble mailers w/the shipping labels properly placed & secure.  Then, I took them to the nearest Post Office and sent them on their merry ways.

I appreciate eBay’s diligence in the protection of all their customers and look forward to smooth sale-ing in the future.  Here are photos of some the listed ImageImageImageDVDs Image

 

Thank you for your kind attention, Charles K. Warren  To see my other blog, click the link below…

http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret?id=chakawakahi 

 

P.S.  I need your help, so PLEASE, leave a comment.

 

 

SPRING has Sprung at the Local Park

A few weeks ago, I photographed this very park. NO ONE was at the park! The baseball fields and tennis courts were empty. The playground equipment was waiting for kids to climb all over them. The park seemed lonely…
On Palm Sunday, the park came alive with ball players, tennis matches, kids scrambling all over the park & on the ‘jungle gym’. BBQs were fired up and one group even brought an inflatable ‘jumper’ for added entertainment!

FLASHBACK: My First Dog

So, ‘Nam was good for my ‘condition’.  When my ‘tour’ of duty ended in ’70, I was also discharged from the USAF with high hopes for a future WITH dogs.

In early ’71, I returned to my pre-‘Nam college town, Durango, CO., to visit classmates I had left behind when I enlisted.  Eager to get my first dog, I told everyone that my allergies were ‘cured’ and asked if they knew of any dogs that might be available.  Luckily, an across-the-street neighbor of one of my friends had a litter of mixed-breed dogs that they were giving away.  My friend drove us to his neighbor’s house so we could take a quick look at the pups.  Both parents were on-premises – a female Border Collie and a male Siberian Husky.  The owner said it was the ideal time to adopt – the pups were 6 weeks old and ready to be weaned.  I fell for a black female w/white markings on all her paws, tail-tip, chest and back of the neck.  I named her “Karma” and from that moment on we were inseparable [I actually carried her inside my trench coat for our first 2 weeks together.]

Training books and other resources were scarce and extremely limited in scope – a lot of ‘old wives tales’ lacking credibility.  Anxious to start training, I sought out hobbyists and other non-professionals for any training information that made sense.  With determination and persistence, I eventually found people who provided practical tips & techniques to help me train ‘Karma’.  She was a ‘natural’.  It only took about 4 months before we could do on & off-leash obedience, some ‘tricks’ such as ‘beg’, ‘play dead’, the ‘chicane’, ‘cover’ or crawl and protect my trench coat –  whenever I dropped it on anything, she would automatically lie on it and prevent anyone from stepping on it or trying to remove her from it. 

Encouraged by this minor success, I prepared to select my next dog.  I came to realize that if I wanted something specific from a dog, pure-breeds were obviously the simplest, most predictable choice.  So, I made a list of 5 breeds that I thought would fit the bill:  GSD, Laborador Retriever, Great Dane, Rottweiler, Doberman Pinscher. 

I also listed the traits or qualities I wanted my future dog to possess.  Since I wanted to take my dog to Hawaii with me, the weather became Determining Factor (DF)1 = short-hair, single coat breeds ONLY.  DF 2 = minimum of 90 lbs. to a maximum of 140 lbs.  DF 3 = intelligent, loyal, protective, tenacious, fearless.  By process of elimination, the Doberman became my dog of choice!  Although it would be 1&1/2 years before I actually got her, I christened her “Drache von Blitzkrieg” (German for ‘Dragon from the Lightning War’) right then and there!

In FEB ’73, I bought my first Doberman – a 7 week old, black & tan female after an impromptu temperament test.  In my research for reliable training information, I found a book called ‘The Koehler Method of Guard Dog Training’ which also included an extensive section on Obedience training.  Applying the principles & techniques from the book, I trained ‘Blitz’ page by page for the next few months.  Again, she was a quick-study, so most of the credit goes to the dog.  By this stage, she did on & off-leash obedience and would ‘alert’ when prompted.  Not bad for a couple of novices….

By 14 months old, ‘Blitz’ responded to overt aggression – in kind – the harder she was pushed, the harder she pushed back!  She also elected herself as the ‘official’ babysitter, protecting our kids whether we were present or not.  Also, she went thru ‘jump’ training at the local parks – over & under the swings;  up the ladder & down the slide; ride & push on the carousel, etc.  I even got her to climb the back-stop at the pee-wee league baseball field and jump from the top, +/- 35 feet high, into my waiting arms!  What a trusting soul she was – I EARNED IT – by NEVER letting her down, literally…

Anyway, we went on to become the Security Team at Larimer Square, Denver’s historic renovation area, for about 4 months.  During that time, the Denver PD responded to several of our ‘open-door’ calls and, after seeing ‘Blitz’ do her search work, invited us to visit their K9 facility to share some training tips and work out with them.  We accepted readily and had a great time competing with a couple of their K9 teams. 

Stay tuned for the next ‘flashback’ episode…

Thanks for your kind attention. 

Please, leave a comment – and help me “Improvise, Adapt, OVERCOME!”

Mahalo & Aloha, Charles K. Warren

 

 

FLASHBACK: My Crazy K9 Connection

Growing up, my first memory of dogs was when my parents’ Cocker Spaniels had a litter of 5 pups.  My sister & I were anxious to play with them – let’s see, I was almost 5, my sister was 3 – bugging our parents daily. 

Finally, when the pups turned 4 weeks old, we were allowed into the play area.  The usual mayhem ensued:  kids – screaming, yelling, giggling, laughing, falling down, twisting, grabbing; pups – yipping, yapping, licking, needle-teeth biting, chewing, bouncing, tumbling.  My sister and I were having the time of our lives, the classic connection, the moving mass of the ‘puppy pile-up’. 

I laughed and I gasped, and I giggled and I gasped, and I cried and I gasped, and I fell down and I gasped, and I didn’t get up and I gasped…my mom, an RN, recognized the symptoms immediately!!!  Believe it or not, I was having an extremely violent allergic reaction to the pups and, having passed out, I was almost comatose within just a few minutes from the start of ‘puppy play’.  Dad rushed us to mom’s hospital where I was treated in the ER.  They said it took too long for me to wake & stabilize, so they kept me overnight for observation.  

In the morning, my symptoms were gone and I was glad to be released.  However, arriving at home – NO dogs in the play area!!  My parents had sold &/or given away ALL the dogs – due to my ‘condition’.  In other words, it was MY FAULT the dogs were gone – what else would a 5 yr. old think??! 

Not only that, mom took me to an allergy specialist in Honolulu for 10 days. I underwent a daily battery of 6-on-each-arm skin-scratch tests to determine the extent of my ‘condition’ – do the math, that’s 120 tests!  Results revealed extreme allergies to the following:  of course, dogs, but in the more general category of “anything with hair or feathers”, therefore, no cats – even IF I ever wanted one – birds, rabbits, ponies, ducks, well…you get the picture; grass – yeah, grass, like at the playground [my parents paved the driveway for me to play on]; milk; CHOCOLATE; eggs; and ANY citrus – pineapple was irresistible [I was born & raised in Hawaii, am 1/2 Native Hawaiian], so I ate it anyhow & willingly paid the price.

No matter, a few weeks later my folks got me a small aquarium with 2 Angel fish.  I’ve always thought of them as ‘no pet’ pets.  They were temperamental & hard to keep.

However, over the years, I became adept at keeping some interesting species, especially the Sword-tails & the Tetras, both Cardinal & Neon – not too many varieties available at the time

Although “anything with hair or feathers” was officially OFF LIMITS, I paid that price also whenever the carnival came to town and I, mysteriously, ended up in the saddle on the back of a pony – laughing and wheezing and gasping.  I can’t remember how many times my dad came to my rescue and ‘saved me from myself’, as mom used to say.

For the most part, I avoided the things that caused an allergic reaction ’til I was in my late teens.  What changed?  Well for one thing, I was in the USAF & had been sent to Viet Nam!!! 

Once after accidentally eating some Egg Foo Yong at the base cafeteria – I was famished that evening & really wasn’t paying attention – I realized that I hadn’t experienced the usual allergic reaction symptoms.  More time lapsed & still nothing.  It had me guessing…what else should I try?  Hot chocolate!  Back to the cafeteria.  It was right there…that would get me going – 2-for-1 – milk & chocolate!  I sipped eagerly, enjoying my first deliberate tasting in over 14 yrs.  No reaction after 1/2 hr.  What next??

As Fate would have it, the entrance to our bivouac had a Sentry Dog Team.  (I was stationed at Lackland, AFB, Texas undergoing USAF Basic Training when I saw my first Sentry Dog & Handler Teams – the base did double-duty as Central Training Facility & Kennel for the DOD.)  My next challenge, more than just allergy…let’s start with courage – I saw these dogs while they were undergoing their Basic Training and was in awe &, I won’t lie to you, a little fearful of their capabilities; if that wasn’t enough, I had an almost complete lack of knowledge regarding dog-greeting manners.  Fortunately, ‘Rusty’ & his handler, A1C Travis, were conditioned to tolerate, even accept, US military personnel and could easily differentiate between them &, well, anyone else!  This led me to my first encounter with their amazing team.  Travis put ‘Rusty’ thru his paces, showing off for a while before I was introduced. Then, I got my chance for a real close-up look at my first dog in 14+ yrs…Travis said ‘Rusty’ was approx. 110 lbs. – and bigger than most VC!!  Then, shortly thereafter and before I knew it, I was petting & very gently wrestling with ‘Rusty’, without a care or worry in the world.  I asked Travis if he ever felt that way with ‘Rusty’ by his side.  “Always & affirmative”, he snapped, then more brotherly, “always & affirmative”…After about 1/2 hour of ‘exposure’ = a minor miracle ~ NO REACTION!!!!!!!!!  I was cured – actually, I learned much later, I had merely ‘outgrown’ my childhood allergies…

Stay tuned for my next exciting ‘flashback’ episode –

In the meantime, help me “Improvise, Adapt, OVERCOME!” ~ LEAVE A COMMENT!!

 

Sonic Burger Hosts Local Hot-rodders

Let me ‘shift gears’ on you this time…[pun intended…]It is almost a tradition around this area.  I call them, “Hot-rodders”.  NOT specific to any make or model, just people who LOVE hot cars!!! – Apologies, NO sexy women, this time…

They congregate weekly here at Sonic Burger, corner of Olive Dr. & Robert’s Lane in Bakersfield, CA.  Just to kinda show off their ride.  The weather this afternoon was blustery, so the participants were reluctant to participate.  Only the intrepid attended…not bad for a free show, though,Image ENJOY!!!!!!!

Anybody out there???  Do you ‘like’ this??  If so, PLEASE – leave a commentImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage