Sunday, May 19, 2013

What Chemtrails Are Really All About

If you're in the dark about what chemtrails really are, you may want to have a look at this video. There's no scientific mumbojumbo, just a plain-speaking man who tells it like it is.

Duane Browning

Attempt to Hijack My Computer

I received this email today:

From: Henry Michael
To: ""
Sent: Thursday, May 16, 2013 5:17 AM

I have just sent the money this morning as you requested yesterday but this will be the last time I will be sending money to Nigeria because I  had to go with a friend of mine before getting this money to u and every necessary information you need to pick the money up has been attached and the senders name is Debbie  Hamilton,  mtcn : 662:623:6744 . so get ur fucking ass down here or else am not going to send any more money.
Love U

Contained within the email, made to look like a Western Union document was an EXE file which likely contains malware designed to hijack my computer and subvert it to use as part of some criminal enterprise or simply to gain access to my files.

As a possible subplot within this scheme, it's written in such a way that a potential reader may come to think that an innocent person is being scammed and will then try to warn the sender that they didn't request any money to be sent. The only thing that would come of that is that the well-intentioned person would simpky have their email address added to the scammers' database.

It's a nice try, but no catch here.

Duane Browning

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Buying A Midori Traveler's Notebook in the United States

It seems that this simply designed notebook has become something of a sensation, if you can make such a determination according to YouTube videos and assorted blog posts.

While Midori Traveler's Notebook seems to have what may appear to be a fanatically-devoted following for a stationary product, they are by no means alone in having such, as you can see from people who use products like Moleskine Notebooks, Field Notes and Filofax, among others. There are people who devote time and energy to posting videos and blog posts telling the world how much they love these products and how much other people should use them too.

But, while the other brands I've mentioned seem to be widely available, a frequent complaint among MTN devotees is how hard it is to get one if you live in the United States. According to one video I saw, there are only four or five vendors in the USA where you can get one.

The Truth is that, while products like Moleskine are quite easy to acquire, MTNs are not impossible to find from American vendors. Here is the list I have put together, so far: offers them for a reasonable price and you can see Midori's Amazon page here.

I live in Honolulu, Hawaii and my first thought was to try to find them at Shirokiya in the Ala Moana Shopping Center. While Shirokiya does stock many products from Japan, they do not yet sell the Midori Traveler's Notebook. The only store in Hawaii that sells them is Hakubundo Books, at the Ward Center. Visit their website here.

You can purchase them at one of several Maido Stationery & Gift stores. They have locations in San Francisco and San Jose. Their sister company Kinokuniya Stationery has locations in Los Angeles and New York City. Visit their website here.

Baum-kuchen seems to do its business solely via the Internet and does not appear to have a brick-and-mortar store. Their website can be found here.

Resor Shop is located in Miami, Florida and seems to have the MTN as its primary product for sale. The site looks good and you can see it here.

OMOI is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and their website is here.

The Goulet Pen Company is based in Ashland, Virginia and their website is here.

This list is as complete as I can make it, with the limited information I have and there may well be other store in the USA that sell the Midori Traveler's Notebook that I am unaware of at the moment. If you know of others, please post their information in comments.

If you simply want a traveler's notebook of the same style as the MTN, but either don't want to spend that much or a brand name is unimportant to you, there are a number of people who make and sell them on and their products could be of the same quality as those made by Midori. The closest in appearance and function to the MTN is made by someone in Canada, known as Zenok Leather and you can browse their collection of products on their shop page.

That's it for now. I'll add more when I can.

Duane Browning

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Craigslist Housing Scam

 Checking Craigslist for available apartments to rent, I found this ad:

Reply To:

$645 / 1br - waikiki -Ala Wai Condo for Rent (2609 Ala Wai Blvd)

Posted: 2013-05-10, 8:33PM HST

Clean 1 bedroom, 1 bath on 8th floor of 12 story secure condo building, partly furnished, secured covered parking, large lanai, newer cabinets, carpet, tile floors and refrigerator. Near zoo and Kapiolani Park with slight view of Diamond Head from living, dining and lanai areas. Coin-operated laundry in building basement. Includes water. Cable ready, Pets. One month securty deposit required at lease signing with first month rent. Six month lease
  • dogs are OK - wooof
  • Location: 2609 Ala Wai Blvd
  • it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

Posting ID: 3798100454

Posted: 2013-05-10, 8:33PM HST

A quick Internet search for the email address provided showed several other ads that had been placed by this person in the recent past, but which had all been flagged and removed. So, I had immediate doubts as to the authenticity of the ad and its author. Nevertheless, I sent an inquiry to the provided address and received this reply:
From: Edra Edward Satromino
                  Thank you for the most eloquent response to my listing, I'm the owner of the apartment you are making inquiry of. Actually me and my wife  resided in the apartment, before i lost My Wife in a ghastly  motor accident so i had to decide to let it out since i alone can not live alone in my apartment and i have just been transferred to Cincinnati Ohio  State due to my work so i don't want my apartment to be there without no one living in my apartment that's why i intend renting out my apartment to whoever is interested in renting my apartment and It includes  utilities like hydro, washer and security, I have my furniture in the apartment. if you which to move in with your furnished items there is a storage area where you can move my furniture's, no problem. Please i want you to note that i am a kind and honest  young man and also from the photos you should know that i must have spent a fortune on the property that i want to give you for rent, i will want you to take absolute care of my apartment and I want you to treat it as your own, as trust is the most important thing but i want you to keep it tidy all the time so that i will be glad to see it neat when i come for  check up.All utilities included except electric (Heat, A/C, Gas, Cable, High Speed, Internet, Water, Sewer, Trash Removal).

                                             ========  RENT APPLICATION FORM ============
                                                                    PRIVATE & CONFIDENTIAL

Also,Pls answer these questions below:
* 1)Your Full Name__________________________ ____________
2)Present Address(where you reside now) & Phone
Number________________________ ______
3)How old are you _____________________________
4)Are you married ______________________________ _____
5)How many people will be living in the Home__________________________ _
6)Do you have a pet ______________________________ ___________
7)Do you have a car ______________________________ ____________
8)Occupation ______________________________ ___________________
9)How long are you willing to stay ______________________________
10)When do you intend to move in ______________________________ ___________
11)Rental Payment plan ranging from 1 month, 3 months or 6 months or 1
year...(indicate most convenient
option)_______________________ __________________

12) Pictures of all the Occupant that will stay in my
13) Copy of Photo ID..(Optional)*

Looking forward to hear from you with all this details so that i can have it
in my file incase of issuing the receipt in your name and contacting
you.Await your urgent reply so that we can discuss on how i  will get the
documents and the keys to you.please I  am giving you all this based on
trust and again i want you to stick to your words,i am putting everything
into Gods hand,so please do not let me down on this property of mine and God
bless you more as you do this.

The obviously self-made "application" is a big Red Flag for me, as well as the flowery language used as well as an appeal to sympathy by the mention of a supposed wife tragically killed in an auto accident. Notice that no phone number is provided.

An IP trace indicates that the message originated from the East Coast of the Untied States, not Ohio, although it's possible that Rocketmail could mask your IP.

For the record, an apartment in this building will normally run about $2000+ per month and utilities are typically added on top of that. Asking less than a thousand dollars a month is a sweetheart deal that's simply too good to be true and so, therefore, isn't. Nobody is going to rent-out a two million dollar condo for less than $700 a month! Besides, an out-of-state condo owner would employ a rental agent to handle matters like this, rather than doing it all via the Internet themselves.

This looks like a scam.

Duane Browning