November 10, 2005

Project Valour – IT

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:11 pm


We are seeking donationf for Project Valour – IT. “Valour” is an acronym for “Voice-Activated Laptops for OUR Injured Troops.”

The Project Valour – IT Site describes the initiative as follows:

Project Valour-IT, in memory of SFC William V. Ziegenfuss, provides voice-controlled software and laptop computers to wounded Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines recovering from hand and arm injuries or amputations at major military medical centers. Operating laptops by speaking into a microphone, our wounded heroes are able to send and receive messages from friends and loved ones, surf the ‘Net, and communicate with buddies still in the field without having to press a key or move a mouse. The experience of CPT Charles “Chuck” Ziegenfuss, a partner in the project who suffered hand wounds while serving in Iraq, illustrates how important this voice-controlled software can be to a wounded servicemember’s recovery.

Project Valour – IT has injected a friendly inter-service competition into the mix to see which military branch team can produce the most donations. So, you are asked to pick a “team,” and go make your donation. I again stress that this is a friendly rivalry, as the real winners here will be our wounded soldiers, sailors, Airmen and Marines.

Team Leaders

Army: BLACKFIVE (This, of course, is my team)

Navy: The Indepundit

Air Force: The Mudville Gazette

Marines: Soldiers’ Angel – Holly Aho

I’m making a special appeal to Jersey Bloggers who are active military, vets, those who have friends or family in the military and generally to all those who really do “support our troops.” You need not make a large donation. Every single donation helps!


Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:10 pm

Basilone.jpgIt seems fitting that today, the birthday of the U.S. Marine Corps, that the U.S. Postal Service released a stamp in memory of Gunnery Sgt. John Basilone, of Raritan, New Jersey. Gunnery Sgt. Basilone won the Medal of Honor for his gallantry on Guadalcanal. After winning the Medal of Honor, Basilone was sent by the Marine Corps back the U.S. to promote the sale of War Bonds. The Corps had offered to make him an officer and station him in Washington D.C., but Gunnery Sgt. Basilone chose to return to action.

He was one of the many Marines who landed on Iwo Jima, where he was killed by a Japanese artillery round, but not before he took actions that won him the Navy Cross, which was awarded posthumously. He is the only man in the history of the United States awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, the Navy Cross, and the Purple Heart.

The issuance of this stamp was, in no small measure, the result of the work of many New Jersey veterans who campaigned vigorously to have Sgt. Basilone commemorated on a postage stamp.

The U.S. Postal Service also released stamps today bearing the likenesses of three other famous Marines, Daniel J. Daly, John A. Lejeune and Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller.

Navigation Systems, The Jersey Edition.

Filed under: Uncategorized — Jim @ 8:08 pm

Navigation System.jpgIt is coming up on the time when I will soon be replacing my big, fat capitalist car with a new big, fat capitalist car. As such, I have taken a look at the fancy-schmancy navigation systems that are available for a small fortune in virtually all big, fat capitalist models. I’m sure you’ve heard of these Global Positioning Satellite – tethered, high tech direction providers, that actually speak, often with a pleasant female voice.

I got to thinking that, given the cost of these things, I ought to be able to get the “Jersey Edition.” The gentle female voice just won’t work for many Garden Staters.

Here’s what I mean:

With the regular navigation systems, a missed turn prompts the female voice to gently say, “You’ve missed your turn. Make the next U Turn.”

I would respond better to the Jersey Edition, which would come equipped with a voice like that of Paulie Walnuts that would say, “ASSHOLE! Ya missed da freakin’ turn. You got your head in your ass or some shit? Turn da hell around! Now!”

Similarly, if one entered a desired destination that is already in the system’s memory, instead of replaying previous directions, the Jersey Edition would say, “Jesus, you are a dopey bastard. How many freakin’ times do ya have to drive to a place to remember how to get there? Don’t make me tell you again.”

Some systems even permit the user to plug in “points of interest” along the route, such as restaurants. Instead of hearing the soporific female voice say, “A restaurant is one mile ahead,” with the Jersey Edition, I would expect to hear, “Yo! Ya gonna come to a restaurant in about a mile, but it’s a freakin’ sushi joint. You gotta be shittin’ me. You don’t wanna eat dat crap. I see a pizza place is a mile and half down da road, where ya can get a slice and a coke or a decent sa-ZEECH, peppers and onions sandwich! Keep drivin’.”

Finally, the Jersey Edition would be programmed to know some things that are particularly useful in New Jersey. So, if you punch in address in a certain part of the state, it would warn you, “Aaaay, are you freakin’ nuts or what?. Dis is Joey Big Nose Calamari’s territory. Ya wanna go dere, you should bring a couple a da guys wit you. Know what I’m sayin’?”

General Motors should make The Jersey Edition standard equipment in the 2006 Cadillac New Jersey. They’d sell a shitload of them. You know what I’m sayin’?

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