The year started a little scare, but it it ended up great. Thank God for my family and friends.
Entries in this blog
Missing Santa's Forest. Wishing it was the holiday season. I am tired of all the negative crap.
I am staring at a honey bee buzzing on my window. Spring is here
I was born in Washington DC. I get my political and moral convictions from Rev. Carl A. Wilbur. He was a great inspiration in my life. Dad was a Marine veteran that served the Catholic Church selflessly for over 35 years. He tutored school children in Southeast DC, was a chaplain at Lorton Corrections facility, supported So Others Might Eat (SOME), worked with terminally ill patients at NIH, and was the spiritual advisor for the Boy Scouts of America.
Earlier in life Dad lost his carpentry job, because he thought it was important to march with Dr. King here in Washington. He never let it get his spirits down. Instead he went bact to school and learned Programming. He got a good job at the Government Printing office and later was the systems administrator for Walter Reed Army Medical Hospital. My dad died several years ago from a long fight with cancer. It was the toughest day of my life. I am crying just thinking about him. But, I know he is in heaven. He is and always will be my hero.
It is difficult to fill my father's shoes. When I was young I actually rebelled from my Dad. He was too good for me. I just was jealous of my friends. While their fathers taught them how to fight, my dad taught me to turn the other cheek. So I rebelled in my teens and partied with my buddies from dusk till dawn. When I graduated high school I really had no focus, so I enlisted in the military. For the first time I was proud to be serving our country. But, during Christmas leave my friends car got hit head on by a drunk driver. My hip and legs were injured from the impact. I was unable to complete my Special Forces training and went into deep depression. One morning Dad noticed I was moping in the kitchen. He told me that son if you focus on the bad you will find it easily. But, if you focus on the good it will brighten your life. That moment stuck with me for the rest of my life.
I got a Degree in behavior Sciences at Northern Arizona University. I participated in several archeology surveys in the Southwest. Then I got accepted into the Semester at Sea program and travelled around our beautiful planet. I got to meet people of different cultures and customs. When I got back I decided to travel and learn in Central America. But, I was called back home due to my father's deteriorating health.
When I got back to Washington everything had changed. Cell phones were everywhere and buildings sprouted up from areas I used to play in.
Everything in DC was fast paced and I felt like a slow moving drifter. But, I focused on the good and one day I got a computer disc in the mail. It was an AOL free six month subscription disc. I was thrilled to interact with my friends from accross the globe. I had the idea to start an online publication for our community. So, I conversed with my Dad and came up with a business plan. All I had to do was come up with a name. My Dad came up with the name. Infohall.
Infohall eventually morphed into DCpages.com. It was a semi-finalist Al Gore's Global Information infrastructure awards.
I gathered artists, musicians, writers, programmers, and friends to meet in my parents basement twice a week. I have been blessed with the opportunity to meet so many fine people. DCpages is celebrating 15 years in 2009. I cannot believe it has been that long.
Shortly after my father passed I once again prayed to find the good in life. A friend of mine convinced me to go out on a blind date with a woman who was experiencing a similar loss of her mother from cancer. Jenna and I clicked the moment we met. We like to think our parents arranged it with the Man above.
Jenna and I got married at the Thomas Jefferson Memorial and traveled across country on our honeymoon. We adopted Denali, our dog in Alaska. Those are memories I will never forget. I love the United States.
Two years ago we purchased a Christmas Tree farm from John Cooper in West Virginia. John was a radio man on the Battleship New Jersey. He was the first American to communicate the Japanese surrender to the United States Naval fleet. John and his staff never really left Santa's Forest and help us manage it. We now sell trees online at FreshChristmasTree.com. I hope to retire there someday in the future.
This year Jenna and I were blessed with a beautiful baby boy. Luke Jr. has met President Clinton, Senator Biden, Senator Byrd, and the Washington Redskins cheeleaders. He is a gift from God to me.
The reason I am supporting Senator Obama is simple. He reminds me of my Dad. He is an opitimist and has a smart plan for our future.
Our country needs a leader to inspire its citizens to greater prosperity. Our country needs a leader that respects other cultures customs and values. Our country needs a leader to care for the future of our planet. President Obama is that man.
May God bless him with the strength and courage it takes to run our Nation's highest office.
Here is a picture of my baby boy with former President William Jefferson Clinton (also known as Bill Clinton, Slick Willie, Elvis II, or President Clinton).
He just eats and eats and eats. My baby is a real piggly wiggly.
He never stops crying and pooping. But, he cute and cuddly to me.
Luke Jr. has not officially made his presidential endorsement yet. But, he would like to see Bill perform with his sax sometime.
My baby was born on Sunday at 6:16 pm in Sibley Hospital. He weighed in at 6 pounds 8 ounces. He has blonde hair and deep blue eyes. These may change, but right now he looks like a Gerber baby.
Little Newt likes to suck on my finger. It seems to pacify him. My life is really changing fast. I can't recall feeling this emotional. I really do love the little guy.
Still pondering ideas about helping seniors.
I found that my mother is enjoying playing on the Piano Doug and I gave her. The piano was made in the early 1900's and cannot be tuned. But, she loves practicing.
The baby room is coming along. The tall Ikea closet cabinets that filled this room have been moved to the master bedroom.
The old carpet was removed and taken to the dump. A shiny new beech hardwood floor from Appalacian flooring company. They really have a great milled product.
Planting season is right up in front of me. Karl, Colleen and I have 5,000 tree seedlings to plant. This year weather has been so long that we are having to push back planting until Easter Weekend. Karl and I decided on using a Stihl Auger drill instead of a divet bar.
We are still feeding the turkeys, and other wildlife at the farm. We have to large feeders in the forest and one by the cabin. The battle with the mice continues. I bought one of those audio rodent repellers. I actually think it attracts them. I do not recomment the product.
Our baby "Newt" is due on Tax Day (April 15). Go Figure? I can see he wants out.
I have to psyche myself for diaper duty. Ed told me that everything about me is about to change.
I still see Dave Chappelle's baby in the "Roots" skit peeing all over me.
Must memorize flipping baby onto its stomach before I change diaper. Little Luke can blind me if I do not watch out.
I think I should be able to deal with waste management fairly well. I remove my dog and cats waste.
With the help of many friends WashDC.com is launched. I looking to see what our community does with it. Hopefully it will help everyone.
I am looking to create a foundation for senior citizens. This foundation would be completely transparent in its activities. The general public would have access to all organizational communication, excluding staff security and personal messages.
The mission would be to teach and distribute educational material on the easiest and most secured services being developed in the industry.
A newletter will be created for senior citizens on how and locations to communicate.
Making a journal is free and easy.
Once you have logged into your account, move your mouse over to the tab "Entries" on the top right hand side of the navigation bar six rows down.
Click on the "Entries" tab with your keyboard mouse.
Click on a entry.
You are done.
I want to take my wife Jenna out to someplace special for Valentines Day. I live in the District. I limited to the fact of my wife is pregnant in her last trimester. Jenna is beginning to have trouble walking and moving. I want to do something low impact for her.
Maybe I should stay home and make dinner for her.
Grilled steak, shrimp, and mixed vegetables. And bake a rich chocolate lava cake.
We can play games afterwords.
I will also get her a real nice valentine gift.
A blog (Web Log) is a web location where entries are made in chronoligical order simular to a real world diary, journal, or publication.
A blog entry is a point of location where a user can gain entry to add information to a public or private journal.
I am still struggling with my diet. Ever since my wife has gotten pregnant. The tempation of twizzlers, and dark chocolate overwhelms me. I sometimes think they are speaking to me.
Then I hear another voice in my head. ...."Use the force Luke." Don't eat that dougnut.
Then I hear another voice in my head "Must Eat Douggggnutttttttttts."
My wife is having cramps and it has gotten me rattled.
On a brighter note,
Went to the Solar Decathalon on the National Mall last week. It was an amazing competition. The ideas of energy efficiency was mind openning. Not of the products looked very expensive to make. Radient heat, Particle Board, Bamboo, PV transformers, battery cells are some of the ideas I came home with. I would recommend going to next year's event. BUT, DO NOT GO ON THE WEEKEND. It is way too crowded to really enjoy the future homes and discuss energy technology with the students.
Redskins BEAT Pats this week.
This holiday season I got the pleasure to work on my farm. I went to a community holiday social. West Virginians are great people. They immediately welcomed my wife and I to the area.
Karl and Colleen are great. They really made the holidays extra special.
I was blessed with snow and a wonderful Christmas with my family.
We sat around the fire and played games. Sometimes Jenna and I would just sit on the couch staring at our Christmas Tree.
I love my wife. She gives me a youthful spirit. I just make her crazy. She is going to be the mother of Neutron, our baby.
We are thinking giving him my name. I can't wait for the day when I get to change little Luke's first dirty diaper : )
My mother worries too much. But, she loves me and I love her.
The drive to and from the farm is long, but well worth it. The change in geography is quite dramatic. The Appalacian Highlands are quite extraordinary. I recommend visiting Cooper's Rock.
We have had some serious snowfall accumulation this year. Hopefully, it will keep going.
Hopefully that is a good sign for America's farms. They are the heartbeat of this country. Especially when we are losing our manufacturing industry.
The government needs to give a tax incentive for Green American Corporations. They are the future of the prosperity of this country and maybe this world. It just my humble opinion that there are clear environmental changes occurring. We need to get with the rest of the world and embrace what is to come as a world community process.
Steve Hills, the President of the Washington Post invited me to breakfast to talk business. I really conversing with an entreprenuer and member of the Warren Buffet community. He asked me about DC Pages. I told him our philosphy and he told me about Buffetism.
I do not know the future, but I sure enjoy the experience.
The Art of Buffetism
Rule No. 1 Never lose money. Never compound money.
Warren Buffet carried the Washington Post as a boy. I carried the Washington Star. : )
You can't make a good deal with a bad guy.
I love DCpages and the everything above that it has given me. Not to mention, the really great friends I have had the pleasure to meet along the way. The Washington Post is exploring working with DCpages over the next few months.
Once you registered your account and signed in you are able to add and modify posts. YOu will see Logged in as: your user name (in my case Luke Wilbur). To the right of your user name you will see a navigation bar Forums, Blogs, Calendar, Members, Search, and Help. Below that row is My Blog, My Controls, View New Posts, My Assistant, My friends, 0 New Messages. Just below this is Your Blog Settings, Content Blocks, Entries, Rating. Click on the Word Entries. A drop down selection box will give you the following options: Add Entry, Hide Draft Entries. Click "Add Entry" and a new screen will appear that states Post a new entry into Luke Wilbur's Blog.
I cannot believe it. I am so happy that I really have to express it.
I am going to be a dad.
My wife is now entering her second trimester.
There is no good book to welcome and prepare couples for the world of parenthood.
Although, one book I read was quite funny. It discussed the theory of men hormonal simularities during the pregnancy. I laughed at the man boobs part. They should have a coupon for Cosmo's Manziers (A brassiere-like device, for men. As seen on Seinfeld). The real truth is that your wife gets hungry and starts eating junk food again. It brings back fond college memories...
Somebody should really come out with a book, "The Zen of Ramon." Its a guaranteed best-seller with college kids.
Anyway, I am taking the first step of realization that my wife being pregnant does not give me the right to eat the same things she does.
The other day I went to the doctor with my wife. I have in possession of two ultrasound photos of "Baby Newtron." In addition, our doctor wrote me a non-pharmacutical prescription with the scribbled words off "Yes Dear" on the paper. This prescription resides in my wallet.
I have also come to the realization that during this period of time the role of the male parent is to gear up for diaper changing. To get me in practice my wife has graciouly given me the duty of cleaning the litterbox twice a week. It is interesting how things just stick together.
On a side note.
I am developing a new web site that hopefully people will like. WashDC.com is dedicated to the memory of my best friends and loving companions for many years.
We just updated the look and feel of DCMessageBoards.com and added alot of new features. The one I like most is a random image password generator. This allows guests to now post questions, but filters out the spam bots. Another feature is the ability to use a rich text editor to post topics and replies. If anyone has a problem please let me know.
I am really experiencing difficulties with my Microsoft Windows 2000 Pro platform. The .Net updates are crashing my API and Outlook. Programmers have discovered a major vulnerbility. It appears that the a hacker can enter your computer unseen. Pretty spooky stuff.
If you are having problems with your Windows 2000 Pro here is Microsoft's number if you need it.
(800) 936 4900 hit option for professional
if that fail use Microsoft's Main Number.
(800) MICROSOFT (642-7676)
I applaud and encourage their updates. But, it appears at the moment that they are losing the battle for security. Red Hat is missing an opportunity.
Since MICROSOFT no longer warrantees Windows 2000, you will be charged $50.00 to speak with a technician. Do not go the email route. You might as well send it out to space. There is still a wait time. My service request number is 1043722112. Once my credit card cleared I was given a technician who is from Bangladesh and now living in Nova Scotia, Canada. He spent over a half hour accessing my computer using Microsoft's Easy Assist, cleaned some .dat files and realized that this was not an Outlook problem. He then transferred to me to another person who was also in the outlook department.
Vinay refunded my $50.00 and gave me a new case number SRX070906602180 and transformed me to Windows 2000 Performance team. Girish remotely worked on my system for six hours and the final result was the blue screen of death. The truth is that there are many types computers. There are many different types of processors. There are many types of hardware peripherals. This leads to many combinations of software drivers. Then comes many differenent types of software applications (Internet Exporer, Adobe Acrobat, etc) that are constantly getting updated. All these variables have to work in harmony in MICROSOFT's operating system. In my case, MICROSOFT has conflict problems with my ATI Video Card.
I trusted MICROSOFT to be able to fix this problem. Instead they caused more problems. In retrospect, I should have patiently waited for my Admin to fix this problem. He built the machine, loaded the operating system, installed the programs, and configured the Network Security.
If you have the same problem and are looking to contact Microsoft.
Use the keyword "hangup" and contact a real local administrator.
My shipmate Chris (Squidman) and I went to our Semester At Sea reunion at Tony and Joe's last night. It brought back fond memories of my early travels around this Big Planet. It was a great time.
We are definitely ol' timers now. Our living quarters was on the bottom "poop" deck.
The metal cave was the home of Sloth, Squidman, and Birdman. We missed class sometimes due to the Chinese crew sealing our part of the deck. People believe me...
You do not want this Planet by the Chinese. I personally had to make a joke out of it or face the possibility with Insanity. Captain Chang I bow in respect to you and your constant fire drills.
You made the mistake of giving us the second rate beer at your bar. And saving the good stuff for your crew. I always wondered who got the money for the cash bar....
I really enjoyed listening to the many adventures of the other alumni. The students really enjoyed their visit to Vietnam. Tony and Joe's is a classy place on the Georgetown Waterfront.
My wife and I went to New Orleans this month for a Green Summit that was being held by the EPA. The French Quarter is still quite charming. We ate way too much great food and gambled a little at Harrahs.
My initial feelings were that the damage from Katrina was mostly repaired. I have watched former President Clinton and President Bush talk about their Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund and how Angelina and Brad were doing their part on television.
I figured with the billions already spent New Orleans would be close to normal.
BOY WAS I WRONG!!!!
I remembered from watching CNN that the 9th Ward was a disaster, so I asked the locals how to get there. I would get the following responses:
"You don't want to go there. There is too much violence and drug running!"
"That place is dangerous. But there are guided tours if you are really interested."
I decided the best way for me to see the 9th Ward was to take a car and go in the morning. So I set off going East following I-10. Within 15 minutes my eyes were wide in shock and horror.
The area looked like the Apocalypse. I was waiting for the four horsemen to greet me.
I want to share what I saw. It is very difficult to write about everything, so I have taken some photos of the devastation.
I have uploaded about 100 images and I plan to do more to get the message out.
If you have any ideas let me know.
One group I really want people to know about is Common Ground Relief.
This organization is really making a difference. I will talk more about them as I finish up the gallery.
This was a rather busy week for me. I purchased a little bit of heaven in West Virginia. My farm is all rolling hills filled with budding hardwood, fruit trees, and thousands of Christmas trees. There is a restored old cabin on the farm that dates back to the early 1800's. The cabin needs a little work, but it is quite charming. John Cooper sold me the farm. John is a 87 year old man that is still quite sharp, but is no longer able to maintain his property. John told me that selling his farm was like losing an arm. I told him that he is welcome anytime to visit for as long as he wishes. Every morning I woke up to the sounds of Blue Birds, Cardinals, Jays, Orioles and a couple of owls. The farm really puts a smile on my face. My wife Jenna said that she has not seen me this happy since we got married.
Jenna and I watched the NCAA tournament together when we had a chance. GO GEORGETOWN!!!
The only down note was putting up the March on the Pentagon gallery. I understand the reason for the protest, but it is hard seeing demonstrators and a line of riot police face off.
On up note, Springtime is here in the Big Eagle. Washington DC is just budding with flowers of all colors.
Today, I started taking photos of the Cherry Blossoms around the tidal basin. They are just budding. It looks like they will be in peak blossom in about a week.
For the last couple of weeks I have been busy creating several photo galleries you may be interested in reviewing.
The first one I did was the Washington Monument. It has ben awhile since I last visited our city's greatest landmark. The views from the observation platform provide unmatched views of the city.
To tie in with the George Washington theme, DCpages visited the Scottish Rite's 'House of the Temple.' . In 1931, the building was voted the fifth most beautiful building in the world by a group of members from the Association of American Architects.
Finally, DCpages was invited to the 2007 Shamrock Fest in RFK's parking lot. The all-day festival was the biggest St. Patty's Festival in the history of the DC area. The staff and I really had a great time making new friends and listening to fantastic music.
The next gallery we are planning on working on is the War Protest that occurred at the Pentagon this weekend. From what I saw approximately 25 - 30,000 people attended the event. It was mostly peaceful but I did see paint graffiti on a park service sign. 'No Parking' was replaced with 'No War' and several peace signs were chalked on Memorial Bridge. At one point the protesters tried to walk over the bridge to the Pentagon building like 1972, but the protesters were immediately pushed back by the police. It was interesting to see Al Jazeera, the Arabi television network covering the event. C-Span was there as well.
I am still trying to decipher the feelings I had going to the event. The Pentagon was the backdrop focus of Cindy Sheehan "We're here in the shadow of the war machine." All I could remember was 911.
I remember all the people crying. I remember all the smoke from the buildings. I remember all the names of missing people on the dusty walls. I remember giving blood for the victims.
It is hard to see the protesters taunting American service men and women in riot gear. It was hard to listen to speakers of foreign countrys from accross the globe shout how Iraq is a wasteful and unjust war. It was hard to listen to the speakers talk about how America occupies other countries. It was hard to listen to protesters shout that America is the new Nazi Germany.
It was hard.
It was a hard cold Saint Patrick's day.
Tonight, I watched Frontline on PBS. The show focused on the future role of news media in the United States. It is now apparent that the Networks are losing ground to the diversity of the Internet. What does this mean?
News is no longer about asking the tough questions to an audience that not to here. Instead we are hearing stories about Nicole Simpson and Cop like news reporters baiting child predators. Why?
Ever since the FCC went soft on its commitment to regulate the broadcast media the news has gone down hill. Today's journalist should be required to have a marketing degree. If the story does not make money then why should the Networks spend money to broadcast it. The advertisers and stockholders are the the new regulators of the broadcast media.
The Internet is the counter balance to what you see on a one way broadcast. So many people are filling up the web with content for many different reasons. Some are activist, some are making a living off eyeballs, some just have big egos, and the list goes on and on and on. Within the world wide web lives a small percentage of seasoned journalist who are trying to broadcast the news. Google, Yahoo, MSN, and AOL are the major gateways to all this mainstream information. These companies are controlled by advertisers and stockholders.
My question is whether the major portion of advertisers and stockholders are the same in both the broadcast and the Internet? If so, what does that mean? Is that only temporary until open source and wiki have taken over the thrown of content search?
If web 2.0 is all that it is promised to be will our future leaders be from a pure democratic utilitarian philosophy. Or will it be a chaos of credible information competing with disinformation? All the intelligence agencies and political parties are veterans spin doctors in this future cyber warfare. Soldiers of the future will something more powerful than guns. Soldiers will have keyboards. In the corporate, federal, and nonprofit world it will be independant contractors or employees.
The problem with the web is not knowing where the truth lies. Will the future be an information race to grab rapidly deterioting attention spans? Or will the web truly expand our collective minds for the possibility of something better. I am an optimist, so I pick the latter.
Today Jenna (my wife), Denali (my dog), and I went driving around the city. First we went to the public golf course by Haines Point. We spotted a couple hundred geese nestled in the snow. Denali thought she might try catching one, so she ran off in chase. My dog had no chance. As soon as the birds spotted her they took off. Watching that many geese take flight at the same time is a magnificant sight to behold. After awhile Jenna and I were able to convince Denali to come over to us. I think the Husky side of her makes her a little rebelious. We went over to the golf course concession stand and bought two watered down hot chocolates.
Afterwards, we drove around different spots in the city. I spotted one of our community members. She was taking photographs of the White House. She told me about her new job a Verizon. The company has hired eight video journalist to roam the city and ask questions. The journalist upload their daily videos to a new video web site. I will have to check it out.
Jenna and I got really hungry and stopped by Annies Steak house on 17th street NW. It is a local tradition to go to Annies every major snowstorm. They are one of the few restaurants that are always open through rain, sleet, or snow. They also serve some darn tasty food.
After some steak and crab cakes Jenna and I stopped by Logan Circle. There was a snowman village. Two guys made this really cool Statue of Liberty snow sculpture. The news crew came by and the two were instant televison celebrities. But, they were not the winners! When we were driving back home there was a couple of snow men dressed up in hula skirts and baseball hats. Even their snow faces were painted. This town has some real fun people.
I got back home and shoveled my snow. Later Jenna beat me at Tiger Woods Golf. She choose John Daly as her player. Well Rome and Battlestar is coming on TV. I hope everyone had a blast today.
I took my Jenna to the Russia House on Connecticut Ave. for a Valentine's Dinner. At first they lost
my reservation I made online, but we got a seat thanks to the snow. Besides that one incident we had
a really enjoyable time. I never had caviar before, so I ordered the Beluga. It has a smooth buttery taste to it. I photographed our entire meal you can view here.
If you have any other good restaurant recomendations let me know.
On Valentine's Day I went to the Washington Monument. The views of the city from the observation room are fantastic. I live in the greatest city. I love DC!
I uploaded some photos for people interested in visiting the Washington's highest structure.
Afterwards, my wife and I went to the Russia House for a romantic dinner. The food and atomsphere was worth the price. We really enjoyed ourselves.