Wanted to give a quick blogging shoutout to my brother who is doing an internship at DTR Fitness in Reno. This little gym rat is learning the ropes and I could not be more proud.
Way to go little bro!
You are now reading the blog of an official freelancer. It’s signed, sealed and delivered. The caffeine-fueled, hard-hitting life of a full-time reporter is something I am putting on the back burner for now.
Although I miss the energy of a newsroom, I am excited that I still get to do stories like this. That new restroom was a big accomplishment for this small Idaho town and gave the workers a much-needed boost after getting tangled in “Pavegate“.
MCCAMMON –– McCammon’s Little Park needed restrooms so in their spare time two of the city’s full-time employees built one.
“It is a great asset to everyone who is there,” McCammon Mayor Ken Bullock said.
Wedged between the city’s sun-drenched rodeo grounds and the shade-filled park, the restroom was built entirely by maintenance supervisors Rich Pierson and Jerry Mercer.
“We had to kind of work on it when we didn’t have anything else to take care of,” Pierson said.
On an average day the workers are responsible for mowing the lawns at McCammon’s parks, working on the city’s water and sewer lines, cleaning the streets and maintaining any city-owned property.
“I’m really glad we did this,” Mercer said. “It was something that was needed for a long time.”
The land between the park and the rodeo grounds was purchased by the city more than seven years ago, when it held a ramshackle vacant home that had once belonged to McCammon’s former city maintenance man. In the summer of 2013, the building was torn down. And in the evening hours, Pierson and Mercer tossed the building’s rubble into rented roll-off Dumpsters.
“It’s been in the works for years,” Pierson said. “We’ve just been saving up every year to have some handicap accessible restrooms available. We saved up for about three years before starting.”
McCammon’s tax base consists of 850 people who usually commute to Pocatello or Soda Springs to work, play and spend their tax dollars, Bullock said.
We are a small community with a small tax base,” Pierson said. “If we can help out ourselves we try to do it.”
The restroom cost the city about $18,000 to build, Bullock said. This cost included paying Pocatello’s Public Works Department for the price of materials to put in asphalt near its entrance.
“It would have cost a lot more if the employees had not given their time,” Bullock said. “We take a lot of pride in that.”
The city of about 350 households employs three full-time employees alongside its mayor: a city clerk and the two maintenance workers.
Pierson says that among the staff there were some skills that were missing and some tasks had to be contracted out to local businesses, including the plumbing and electrical work.
“It had to be up to state plumbing and electrical code so we hired that out,” Pierson said. “We also hired a guy to pour the concrete slab.”
The balance of the work, including the framing, sheeting and installation of sinks, toilets, light fixtures and drinking fountains, was done by Pierson and Mercer.
The job was finished in May, ahead of the Marsh Valley Pioneer Days Rodeo.
“It was wall-to-wall people,” Mercer said of the rodeo weekend.
“It’s a good feeling to say that I gave back and that I can point over there and say ‘I built that,’” Pierson said.
Now that the maintenance workers are finished with their project, they have added another item to their daily to-do list — cleaning the toilets every evening.
“We are already talking with the mayor about installing a security system,” Pierson said of the way that the restrooms have been dirtied recently.
Ahh, how I love fun, free apps.
I stumbled across this gem recently and knew I had to share. It’s called Eyespend and for those who are in the mood for a a TMI moment it’s really interesting.
Download the app. Scan the barcodes of your favorite brands. See what causes, politicians and PACs are getting their (OK your) dollars. For those who like to spend consciously, it was a major “woah” moment.
The app was fun to try out, but if I thought like that every time I walked into Target I’d have to start making my own sweaters from wool I harvested from a hypothetical backyard sheep.
Go ahead, who do your dollars support? You might be surprised.
This post might go down a bit of a rabbit hole. However, it’s an interesting one.
While checking out this new service, CheckThis.com, I found a one-stop page with the best free documentaries you’ll find on YouTube.
Check it out here, and happy watching.
Ask and ye shall receive!
Just yesterday I was pondering the role of social media and health care. Well, someone pointed me to this little gem of an infogrpahic detailing just that.
A few problems that I saw are detailed by the pros here. First and foremost, it is easy for what we share via social media to leak out into the wide world. And frankly, grandma’s cyst is nobody’s business but her own. Social media can provide fantastic access to doctors and other health professionals. But during implementation, we need to be careful not to develop a case of TMI.
Being attached somewhat to the health industry, it is always interesting when my worlds collide.
Take this infographic by The Journal of Medical Internet Research. You might be surprised that such an organization exists. Well it does, and it discovered that Europe’s health care system’s use of social media is growing by leaps and bounds – especially on YouTube.
What I would have liked to see from this research was HOW social media was being used. Is the Facebook diagnosis a reality? Or can you ask your doc about that painful stabbing in your knee over Twitter?
Our world is becoming more transparent by the day, but is our health care following suit?
Read my biography and you might know why this topic is dear to my heart. Today the news was spattered with tales of food and health regulation in an effort to make us healthier.
After reading these headlines I started in on some social media consulting work for a ergonomics and injury prevention company. These people want to shift the corporate conversation away from heath care coverage to workplace injury prevention. I can’t help but buy into this.
Government regulation won’t do it. I mean, we saw how well that worked with prohibition. If people want a cookie and an Super Coke, they will find a way to get one. Maybe though it is time to take some personal responibility for our health.
What a novel idea …
I manage several social media accounts for small businesses. Apparently I am fairly efficient at it . Take a look at all the time America spends on social media.
Did you know that people spend twice as much time on social media as they do exercising? I like to combine both, probably sacrificing a really good gut-grinding elliptical session for a mediocre one.
Did you also know that the GPA of students who spend hours on social media weekly is a whole point lower than their counterparts who use less? If you manage other’s social media, does that mean that your GPA decreases by two points? Uh oh.
This infographic is filled with tons of other fun tidbits. My penchant for productivity might be promoting a terrible trend.
NBC News said it best last week:
“In an increasingly virtual work world, an estimated one-third of U.S. workers — more than 42 million men and women — no longer report to traditional 9-to-5 jobs. Instead they belong to a growing freelance segment of the labor force, an often skilled class of career jugglers and independents who create mosaic incomes from contract gigs, projects, part-time jobs, temp work, moonlighting and consulting. This freelance nation fills the gaps that corporate America no longer wishes to cover with full-time salaried employees.” ~ Link
Freelancing seemed the norm when I was abroad. I mean, what else are you going to do in a country that does not grant foreigners work visas? But back stateside, apparently the paradigm has shifted. I am tossed into a job market so battered by recession that employers would rather hire out projects piecemeal than pay a salary.
Not that I am complaining. Take a look at this report from Elance, a freelancing site I use regularly.
of Elance users said they freelance as much as they can because it is their main source of income.
said they were happier freelancing than they would be as a full-time employee.
But here is the kicker:
of freelancers expected their income to increase next year. Of that percentage, most thought their income would increase anywhere from 10-40%. On Elance, the biggest growth appeared in the high-skilled computer programming industry with internet software companies growing their freelancer base by more than 125% just this last quarter.
I would be shocked if any numbers from the traditional job market followed these trends.
I am a runner, writer, explorer, personal trainer, feminist, daughter, sister, friend and the the lucky wife of a globe-trotting medical student. My curiosity pushes me to learn something new about my world every day.
"I don't think much of a man who is not wiser today than he was yesterday." - Abraham Lincoln. I'm working on it AbeFor more about me, see GoingGlenn.com.