MiiR recently started shipping their new beer growler that they had for pre-sale since last year. Just got mine and here are my initial thoughts:

First, it is a nice looking growler an looks like it should hold up to abuse. What I noticed right away was there were instructions on how to open the growler, and doing the steps in reverse how to close the growler. I’ve used many a growler over the years with different types of closures but this is the first one I’ve seen that had instructions. Trust me, you’ll need then. Be sure to practice many a times before having it filled as you will most likely have to close it for whoever filled it up. Part of the issue in closing is you have to force the cap across the clamp to get it back into a closing position, A little design changes could probably have addressed the issue, see if MiiR addresses the issue. I saw one comment of their website from another user that complained about the same thing.

Second issue, it leaks. Not a good thing for a growler you paid $59 for. I filled mine up with warm water, placed the cap back into position and proceeded to shake things up. Doing this I noticed water dripping down around the cap. I figured it could just have been water from me filling it so wiped it down and shook it again. Water again drips out when held upside down. I repeated this several more times with the same results every time. I grabbed my glass growler with a ceramic clamp top and tested it out, no leaks. My glass one cost $12, granted more fragile then the MiiR one but leakage is not a good thing for beer storage.

Right now I coming to tell people to pass on this growler. The lid closing issue isn’t a deal breaker but the leaking is one, pass on this growler until MiiR addresses the issues

A little recipe for making a batch of hot buttered rum, perfect for the holiday season. You can omit the brown sugar and still have a tasty drink. Nice drink for sitting at home and relaxing.

1 stick of unsalted butter, room temperature (I like using Kerrygold butter)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon clove
1 cup light brown sugar
pinch of salt
1/4 cup honey

Mix dry ingredients together, then mix in butter till it is creamed. Add the honey and stir in till well mixed.

Add a heaping tablespoon to a mug, 2-3 ounces (adjust to your taste) of your favorite rum. I would suggest Captain Morgan’s Private Stock. Add boiling water, stir and enjoy

Dear Microsoft,

In the past I have placed your Microsoft Points on my son’s account for him to make purchases, mainly music. With the retirement of the Microsoft Points the points on his account were converted to “local currency”.  At first I thought no big deal, points/local currency, all the same in the long run as local currency was used to purchase the points. How naive I was to think that.

When my son last tried to purchase music through your store his purchase was declined. Why? No balance. No balance? His points were converted to local currency which can be used to purchase apps and games, but not music. Why not music? Is Microsoft a hatter of music thinking it leads to the degradation of society? No, something else according to the support agent I spent time chatting with today. The reason is the various Microsoft services are not synchronized between each other.  What a wonderful idea! Move people off one system was working between the between apps, games, and music to another one that doesn’t work.

But no worry, Microsoft has a solution. Again according to the support agent the solution is to purchase an Xbox One when it comes out, this will allow the purchase of music once again. What a deal, upgrade for several hundred dollars so I can use $50 in credits for music purchases.

Did anyone at Microsoft take a moment to say “How will these changes impact our existing customers?” Or was it decided to ignore existing customers, if they want what they already paid for they can fork over even more money.

Pretty pathetic on your part Microsoft.


Twice recently I had to use the “I forgot my password” feature on websites. Normally I keep my login information in Password Safe but forgot to add these two sites. The two sites I am talking about are The Great Courses (aka The Teaching Company) and University Alliance. Why do I mention these sites? Because of bad password security.

When I used the forgot password option on both of these sites I received an email, in clear text (no encryption) with my password. Sensitive information should NEVER be sent via clear text email, and passwords should be stored as a hash+salt. I sent emails to both sites, but not expecting them to do much. Any component programmer or IT security person should have know this was bad and never allowed it to take place.

Bad companies, BAD!

One of the things you learn from Tony Blauer is to “Be Your Own Bodyguard“. I won’t go into the entire concept of the program but I do want to harp on the importance of being responsible for your own protection. Take this story out of Oregon:

An Oregon woman was told by a 911 dispatcher that authorities wouldn’t be able be able to help her as her ex-boyfriend broke into her place because of budget cuts.

Oregon Public Radio reports that an unidentified woman called 911 during a weekend in August 2012 while Michael Bellah was breaking into her place. Her call was forwarded to Oregon State Police because of lay-offs at the Josephine County Sheriff’s Office only allows the department to be open Monday through Friday.

Now imagine if you were the caller, someone is breaking into your house and the 911 dispatcher pretty much tells you that you are own your own. I am not saying that you shouldn’t call 911, do so if it is safe for you to do that but remember that until help arrives you are responsible for your safety and that of your loved ones..

What does this mean? Make sure you follow good practices for securing your home. For some good tips check out Alex Haddox’s book “Practical Home Security: A Guide to Safer Urban Living“. Make sure people in the household know what to do in an emergency. This goes beyond someone breaking into your house but should also cover fires and medical emergencies. Have a plan! I won’t tell you tell have a firearm in your home, that is your choice. But if you do make sure you train with it, everyone in the house knows proper firearm safety, and you keep it secured until you need to use it.

Remember, when push comes to shove Be Your Own Bodyguard


I wrote about my attempts to settle my dispute with High Mountain Hunting Supplies in Moses Lake, WA. Here is what I’ve done.

  1. Sales clerk insists the Glock Generation 4′s only come with two magazines
  2. Sent letters to the managers of each store stating my case and included a copy of the letter from Glock saying the Generation 4 handguns come with 3 magazines. No replies
  3. Filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau, no reply
  4. In hopes of making some noise, did a review on Yelp

Personally I am taking silence as agreement with me. It would be simple enough for them to contact me and clear up the issue but nothing there to date.


Below is a copy of a letter I am sending to High Mountain Hunting Supply located in Wenatchee and Moses Lake, WA. My advice to people is to not do business with this unethical company.

To the Management

On March 1 I purchased a used Glock 26 from your Moses Lake store. During the purchase process the store personal were unable to locate the case and additional magazines that come with the handgun. I was told they “swore” it was around here and they would contact me once it was located. I made a comment about wanting to be sure to get the two extra magazines that the firearm comes with from Glock. I was told that Glock only ships the Generation 4 handguns with two magazines now, not three.

This raised my suspicion as only a few months earlier I purchased a Generation 4 Glock 21 and it came with 3 magazines. Thinking that maybe Glock changed their policy I asked around on some internet forums popular with Glock fans and was told by all that all Glock’s ship with 3 magazines and that Glock had recently sent out memos to all dealers informing them of this and not to short customers on the magazines. Knowing the internet is not always right I followed up with an email to Glock and was informed that all Glock’s come with 3 magazines.

This makes me question the integrity of your company. Could you really not find the case and extra magazines and sold them on the side? If you would short customers on a new purchase why not on a used purchase. As it has been a couple of days with the Moses Lake store having no luck in finding the case and additional magazines I’m writing it off as a lesson learned on my part, the lesson being the lack of integrity with your company. This lesson has taught me not to do further business with your company and to inform all that I can as to the manner in which your company conducts business. If you think I am in error I would welcome speaking with you. My contact information is at the top of this letter.

Letter from Glock

Letter from Glock

Is the party of “tolerance” has none if you disagree with them. Take for example Angie Lee, a fitness expert in the New York area. Angie is a die hard liberal whose main concern is what the government is going to allow her to do with her vagina. I have no problem with that, there are single issue voters on both sides. But when you decide to call people haters, ignorant, and stupid because their political views different from theirs and they expect you to do whatever the ruling party says (as long as it is their party), what does that say about you as a person?

Nothing new here, liberals are always big on tolerance as long as it is their ideas and not yours.


I picked up a bottle of Woodinville Whiskey Co.’s bourbon to sample. I like bourbon, preferring it neat. Currently my “go to” bourbon is Maker’s Mark “46″, a great bourbon for the price in my opinion. I tend to drink bourbon neat, unless the alcohol content is high then I cut it with a bit of water,

The bourbon from Woodinville is 92 proof, on the edge of where I drink it neat or cut it. I tried the first glass neat and was hit with an overpowering alcohol taste. Okay, that isn’t going to work. The next day I tried cutting it with a bit of water. That handled the alcohol burn so I could experience the taste of the whiskey. And the taste? Bland, no depth to it at all. Huge disappointment. I’m chalking it up to lack of aging. Woodinville uses the smaller casks to age their whiskey, which does shorten the aging time as more whiskey is in contact with wood, but It doesn’t help the flavor at all.

I’ll advise people to be weary of this bourbon. For the price there are many other choices out there that have more character then this one. Even cheaper whiskeys are available that have a better taste profile. This goes on my do not buy again list.

For those interested in getting their Personal Defense Readiness (PDR) certification with Blauer Tactical Systems in 2013 the first set of courses have been announced for February 8-10, 2013. And for what must be a first there will be two certification courses running at the same time, east coast and west coast.

PDR 36 in Vienna, VA

PDR 37 in Carlsbad, CA

Don’t miss this chance if interested in becoming part of the PDR Team