Walking Dead: Would You Be Ready for the Apocalypse?

Would you be ready for the apocalypse? The Walking Dead asks that question every week. There is a great deal of human intrigue in the show, but the show is always asking you, the viewer, if you would be ready to deal with an apocalypse on that order. The idea goes much farther than dealing with zombies. Truly, zombies are the easy part of the apocalypse.They feed off of #austerity...  A #soulless society of #zombie workers, like a scene from #Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, but instead of #sucking the life out of #everybody, these #fluoridated motherfuckers are hungry for your #money!   #hashtag #illumin

Lost People

We live in a world where we are very connected. You know people from all over the world, and it the entire world has been overrun by an apocalypse at once, all the people you are connected to around the world are effectively gone. There is no chance you will ever see them again. The people on the show deal with those ideas every day. There are so many people they miss that they never go to to say goodbye to.

Insecurity

The one thing that the apocalypse creates is insecurity. You will have no idea what is going to happen the next morning. You never know when someone in your crew is going to be bitten or killed. You have no idea when you will run into other humans you cannot trust. There is not a safe place on Earth. Even if you lock down a house, there is no way to know for sure that zombies would not get in.

Violence

The Walking Dead graphically depicts the violence that is necessary to kill zombies. You would have to “kill” thousands of people who have become zombies. You can see their wedding rings. You can see them in their uniforms, and you know that they used to be somebody. However, you have to end them in order to save yourself. Many of us believe we could do that, but we need to think twice before we assume we could be that violent.

Order

The lack of order in the world is the thing that would break most of us. We can reconcile loss, but that loss is hard to reconcile when there is no order in the world. There is not one authority on the planet that is still operating. How would you be able to resolve problems without such a structure?

On the show, all these problems are handled violently. Murdering violent people is all part of the job if you want to stay alive. It is one thing to kill a zombie that is no longer a person, but it is something else to kill a real person who is simply a thieving criminal.

You might think that you would do just fine when you are watching The Walking Dead, but you would not know unless it happened in real life. The zombie apocalypse is not all fun and games. At its heart is a tense human emotion called loss that we would all have to confront head on.

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NCAA Football Rankings – Does the NCAA cause gambling addiction?

NCAAPlacing a winning bet on a college football game can be an exhilarating feeling. If you are a sports fan, you probably have been tempted to use your knowledge to win some easy money or perhaps have won money in the past. However, does betting on college football games lead a person down the path to a gambling addiction?

Gambling May Be a Genetic Issue

To a certain extent, gambling may be a behavior that is hardwired into some people. This is because those that tend to gamble frequently have an addictive personality to begin with. In a scenario such as this one, it would be hard to blame the NCAA or any other group for the actions of a gambler.

Emotional Betting Can Hurt Many Gamblers

Some people have good luck when they first start betting. Winning $100 on a $1 bet on the very first try may trick a naive gambler that he or she can make that type of money on any bet. However, a professional will tell you that the math simply does not add up.

Success or failure on one or two bets is not a large enough sample size nor long enough of a track record for anyone to declare that they are good enough to win consistently. Unfortunately, it may create a situation where a gambler makes bets based on emotion and causes them to risk more money than they can afford to lose.

Once the losses start to pile up, it can be harder and harder to pull away from the table in an attempt to win that money back. While a smart gambler will walk away and try to learn from their mistakes, most will become desperate and place wagers on anything that they think will help them recoup their cash.

Gambling Should Always Be Seen as Entertainment

Anyone who has placed a wager in the past generally understands that the house always has the advantage. Therefore, it is a good idea to only gamble with money that you can afford to lose and not be upset when the bet turns into a losing proposition. While a bettor may win occasionally, this is almost always done for public relations purposes. In other words, the person making the bet got lucky and shouldn’t expect to repeat such a performance in the future.

Does the NCAA create problem gamblers? While it may be easy to put the finger at them, it is ultimately the responsibility of the person making the bet to make sure that he or she is not throwing money away. All the NCAA can do is to promote awareness regarding problem gambling and point people toward resources to get them help. However, they cannot be responsible for the actions of an adult with complete control over his or her money.

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New 100 Dollar Bill – What Changed?

Two Hundred Dollars 1

The new $100 dollar bill was introduced to the world recently and Benjamin Franklin, the iconic figure who has traditionally graced the C note for decades, would, as a garish and innovative guy himself, completely approve.

What’s new about it? 

The Federal Reserve added many clever designs to thwart counterfeiters. First of all, there’s lot more color. The older designs that were all variations of green, black and gray have been glammed up with oranges, copper and blues, all with the purpose of adding extra security.

A blue ribbon that runs vertically through the bill is actually hundreds of thousands of little liberty bells that change shape as the bill is turned different angles. So if you’re in the habit of giving crisp Benjamins to family members, you might want to show them how the bells change into “100s” right before their eyes. Cool, huh?

Is that a feather? No, it’s a quill. Not just any quill, it is put there, in a lovely shade of copper, to represent the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Phrases from that document are on the bill too, in tiny letters, so readers can get a micro-lesson in American history (and counterfeiters groan in frustration!)

If that weren’t enough, and it isn’t if you’re trying to one-up the bad guys, a colored ink well has another liberty bell in it. This bell changes from green to copper as the perspective on it changes, just like the 100 that’s next to it.

New textures along Franklin’s shoulder are also more than just a delight for the senses, they could also challenge any counterfeiter. Raised textures are all over the bill and makes holding a C note more fun than ever. With over three billion of these Benjamins in circulation, the government has no choice but to take every measure to protect its currency.

Franklin also makes an appearance in a watermark. If you hold it up to the light, you can see him again. What would he think of all these changes?

If you turn the bill over, besides seeing a bold 100 in bright gold/orange numbers, you’ll also see Independence Hall in Philadelphia, from the back. The back? Why would the Federal Reserve want a photo of this historic landmark where they keep the lawn mower and recycling bins? (Thankfully, they’re not in the picture.) Again, this is for the counterfeiters’ benefit. If you’re going to go to all the trouble of counterfeiting, now you’ll have to get Colonial architecture accurate. (Counterfeiting is a felony and can earn you some serious jail time. It’s not worth it, kids!)

The new $100 bill is a work of art, a technological achievement and a tribute to our great nation, and more specifically, a prominent figure in our history. Benjamin Franklin, inventor, printer, signer of the Declaration of Independence and Philadelphia’s most famous kite flyer, would probably be thrilled with the technological upgrades, the bling and all those Liberty Bells on the new $100 bill.

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Diana Nyad: Never Give Up

Diana Nyad, a 64-year-old endurance swimmer, became the first person to swim the 110 mile distance from Cuba to Key West Florida. Certainly, the environmental factors were in her favor as the sea life did not bother her,

Diana Nyad at TEDMED2011

Diana Nyad at TEDMED2011 (Photo credit: Klick Pharma)

the currents stayed friendly, and no storms approached. She swam for over fifty-two hours straight before reaching the coast of Florida.

After her long, treacherous journey across the ocean, her words of advice to others were “I have three messages. One is we should never, ever give up. Two is you never are too old to chase your dreams. Three is it looks like a solitary sport, but it takes a team.” Surely, just as a physical sport requires will-power and endurance not to “throw in the towel” or give up, life also requires this same type of endurance.

We are all running an endurance race of life in which we must preserver when trials arise. In order to succeed in this, we must never look back at past failures, but rather press forward to the reward. Just as people running a foot face are running with intense focus on the goal (to cross the finish line and win the metal), people with purpose are also running this race of life, in which they are looking forward to a reward beyond our human comprehension.

In addition, just as Diana Nyad said that one is never too old to chase his or her dreams, a person should never look at age as a determinant of wisdom or faith in life. This is undoubtedly true in regards to children and their innocent, child-like faith that is unpolluted by experience and unspotted by the knowledge of the evilness that exists all around us in this world.

On the other hand, the older people should not possess a mind-set that limits their ability to stay active in life. As soon as a person determines in his or her head or listens to outside voices telling him or her that he or she cannot do something because of advanced age, he or she has a tendency to live out these thoughts and these thoughts create feelings of defeat. Ultimately, people should keep a child-like faith with an optimistic, determined thought pattern in life. This will surely create better overall mental health and therefore more productivity.

Just as Diana Nyad pointed out that her endurance swim could not have been successfully accomplished without a team, people need positive fellowship in life. When a person is discouraged, having somebody to embrace him or her in a hug and simply offer words of encouragement can greatly leave a positive impact on the soul. When one person is strong in an area, the next person is possibly weak in that same area. We are all unique and have different strengths that we can bring to the community. If everybody shared their time and gifts with their neighbor, this life would be much simpler.

Unfortunately, many “sharks” exist amongst people that are looking for somebody to gnash with their teeth, torture, and devour. It is often said that a shark can “smell fear” and thus responds in a negative matter to fear. Diana Nyad did not focus on the sharks, therefore did not display fear nor was she approached by any dangerous predators. Instead, she focused on the shore, not looking to her right or left. In life, if we do not pay the “sharks” any attention, they will most likely not notice or approach us.

We can learn much from Diana Nyad’s example of her “Never Give Up” endurance swim.

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