The On Ramp

The Blue Mountain Internet Customer Newsletter

 Issue # 28 February 2006 
INSIDE THIS EDITION
Greetings from the Editor  by Carol Hall BMI Introduces Parental ...  by Ruben Bybee
Upgraded BMI Spam Protec ...  by Ruben Bybee Fast Food Facts  by Victor Luna
Medical Online  by Gena Bybee How Did That Song Go?  by Matt Stephens
14 Funnies  by Tony Abrego Online Casinos  by Victor Luna
Auto Insurnace Made Easy  by Tony Abrego That's Amore!  by KJ Newby
February-How Short Thou ...  by Jose Acosta Catching up with Colin  by Carol Hall
BMI Expands Support Hours  by Ruben Bybee Let's Talk Viruses  by Mike Rochelle
POM KJN Enterprises  by Jon Alexander Kudos  by Matt Stephens
The Winners Circle  by Carol Hall
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Greetings from the Editor
by Carol Hall


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Greetings to all of you and I wish you a most wonderful February! I hope you enjoy this edition of The On Ramp. You will notice a few differences in the layout this month. We have changed the format to allow you quick and easy access to the articles that interest you, as well as allowing it to load faster when you open it. If you prefer the previous style, however, that too is still available. Just click on the "printable version" link.

I have received numerous requests asking that the "solution" to the previous month's puzzles be published in the newsletter. Please know that we are working on this for you!

As always, I welcome your comments and additions to the newsletter! Please email me at editor@bmi.net
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BMI Introduces Parental Controls
by Ruben Bybee


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News Flash! FREE parental controls for the first 100 customers.

After several years of researching various parental control software packages, BMI has chosen to partner with kidsnet.com to offer parents award winning parental control software at a reasonable price (starts at $3 per month and will protect up to 6 computers).

For the first 100 customers who signup in February, 2006 we are offering this service entirely FREE for 90 days! You can see more information at BMI Parental Controls
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Upgraded BMI Spam Protection
by Ruben Bybee


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To better serve our customers, BMI will be upgrading to a more robust spam protection system in February!

Some of the noticeable improvements will be less spam to your quarantine and improved protection against "phishing schemes".

All of the email protection mechanisms that you have grown accustomed to with BMI will still be utilized including virus and worm protection, spam and "phishing" protection and a web based interface that allows you to manage all of your personal settings. More info to come...
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Fast Food Facts
by Victor Luna


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Burger King, McDonalds, Taco Bell - Have you ever dared to wonder how much fat, carbs or calories you are consuming? (Some of us would just rather NOT know) However, if you are the inquiring, informed type... "A whopper with cheese, medium french fries w/salt and a 22 oz. soda pop are about 1390 calories and that's only one meal!

There are plenty of websites out there where you can check the nutritional content of the "fast foods" we love to consume. For example:

Lifemana.com
Fat Calories.com

If you are addicted to some of these fast food places, here is a site that shows you the healthiest foods you can order. Go to

Health Check Systems.com This site gives you the carbs, calories and fat content of the healthiest food you can buy at your favorite fast food restaurants. (See...they're not ALL bad!)

With the information you now have, you can click your way to a good fast food choice that fits your eating habits!
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Medical Online
by Gena Bybee


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It always seems to happen. You have a medical problem when the doctor's office is closed. Getting help for your symptoms on-line (in the middle of the night) is so helpful. You may still need to see a doctor, but at least you may find out what's wrong or maybe even find some over the counter remedies.

My Electronic MD : You can search by Medical Symptoms A to Z, or get a "Free Online Medical Diagnosis ".

Diagnose Me: "Unexplained Symptoms?" Why guess? They will tell you what's really going on.

Just Answer: Ask Your Medical Question:
Recent health questions & expert answers from Doctors, Nurses & Other Medical Experts help you online ASAP! Just ask, they answer. You need to register to see other questions and answers in their archive. There is a question list button at the bottom of home page.
(This one may also cost money. Most questions cost around $5.00 to $15.00 but some are a lot higher.)

Here are some places you can do more research:

Medicine Plus - They have dictionary spellings and definitions of medical words.
The Natural Remedies Encyclopedia - Natural Remedies for over 500 diseases
International Home Remedies - An archive of Home Remedies from around the world
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How Did That Song Go?
by Matt Stephens


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Are you like me? Are you one of those people that we all see in cars passing by, happily singing along to the radio and oblivious to the fact that their car has see through windows? I know, we all feel safe inside closed cars, like it's "our own little world".

And then that song comes on that you "kind of know...but not really". And you start to blush even though no one can see you. The self-conscious feelings take over as you begin to laugh at yourself. No one can hear you, but that doesn't matter. You don't know the words.

I can help with this one. Or rather, you can help yourself with this one. There are so many websites out there for the music enthusiast inside us all, that you will have no reason to not know the lyrics to your favorite songs (old songs, new songs, unique songs, even songs from some old tape you had in 1987 and can't remember who sang it or the name of the song). The answer IS there...for you!

Okay, so "how do I find this out?" you may be already asking. It's simple. Go to: Google and in the "search field" enter the lyrics you know. Usually one line will work. A list will pop up of many different websites with the lyrics, song titles, and artists. You can even find instrumental tab sheets, so you can learn how to play the song as well as sing it!

To get straight to the point, there are so many websites dedicated to songs, music, and lyrics that it would take pages to list them all. Here are a few of the more popular ones though, check them out. You'll enjoy yourself:

Lyrics.com
Music Song Lyrics
Cowboy Lyrics (My personal favorite)
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14 Funnies
by Tony Abrego


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Q: Do skunks celebrate Valentine's Day?
A: Sure, they're very scent-imental!

Q: What did the French chef give his wife for Valentine's Day?
A: A hug and a quiche!

Q: What did the girl pickle say to the boy pickle on Valentines Day?
A: "You mean a great dill to me"

Q: What did the boy octopus say to the girl octopus on Valentines Day?
A: Can I hold your hand, hand, hand, hand, hand, hand, hand, hand?

Q: What did the valentine card say to the stamp?
A: Stick with me and we'll go places!

Q: What do squirrels give for Valentine's Day?
A: Forget-me-nuts

Q: Why did the banana go out with the prune?
A: Because he couldn't get a date.

Q: What does a valentine envelope say when you lick it?
A: Nothing, it shuts up.

Q: If your aunt ran off to get married on Valentines Day, what would you call her?
A: Antelope

Q: What did the painter say to her boyfriend on Valentines Day?
A: "I love you with all my art!"

Q: Did you hear about the romance in the tropical fish tank?
A: It was a case of guppy-love

Q: What do you call two birds in love?
A: Tweethearts

Q: Why is Valentine's Day the best day for a celebration?
A: Because you can really party heart-y!

Q: What did one oar say to the other?
A: "Can I interest you in a little row-mance?"
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Online Casinos
by Victor Luna


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Visiting an Online Casino might make you feel as though you are in a real casino! For example, you must follow the playing rules of the online casino. These can be strict rules, especially when you are playing for real money. You need to keep in mind that in most cases you will be playing against real people - some who may be very good.

Most games are fairly straight forward with their rules and most will have a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) link that you can refer to. Here is a link to some of the highest rated online casinos out there:

Online Casino Reports

At these casinos, you can play everything from Baccarat, Craps, Texas Hold 'em to Video Poker and slots. A lot of times, the websites will give you credit so you can get used to playing before you spend your money, or they will have free play for no money. In order to play, you will need a credit card. Your card is charged for your plays, and credited back when you win. Here are some links that you can check out.

Pacific Poker
Paradise Poker
Inter Casino
Real Vegas Online
Casino.com

A few things you need to know about online gambling.

You are playing with real money, and you can lose your money. Online gambling operations are in business to make a profit. They take in more money than they pay out. You can ruin a good credit rating if you gamble away more than you can afford to lose.

Online gambling generally requires the use of a credit card. If kids rack up debt online, they could ruin their credit rating - or their parent's. Online gambling can be addictive. Because Internet gambling is a solitary activity, people can gamble uninterrupted and undetected for hours at a time. Gambling in social isolation and using credit to gamble may be risk factors for developing gambling problems.

Gambling is illegal for kids. Every state prohibits gambling by minors. That's why gambling sites don't pay out to kids and go to great lengths to verify the identity of any winner.

Gambling, however, is also a great source of enjoyment for many....so if that is you, and the weather is unfavorable for going out, or you live many miles from a casino...this is an excellent way to enjoy it! Have fun!
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Auto Insurnace Made Easy
by Tony Abrego


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Have you ever gone to an Insurance company for an auto insurance quote and thought it would take you only to 10-15 minutes? As you sit there waiting for an agent to help you, the phone keeps ringing and you continually get interrupted? And each time the agent returns, you have to start over again. Sound familiar? More than a "little" frustrating?

I've been there. However, there is a better and faster way to get a quote from an Insurance company. You can go online and begin your search. I prefer Google, because you can type the word Insurance then hit the spacebar and type your zip code. You will get a list of Insurance websites that service your area. Most of the sites allow you to enter specific information and get a quote online - a real time saver, not to mention a money saver because you can compare premiums.

When you go to a website, you will find some really helpful information about the company. Most of them will have a contact email address so you can email them questions. Some have live support which you can use for instant, one on one communication. And you should find a phone number listed for the company also. Most sites are really good and they have links that help you find answers to your questions.

When you submit personal information that is requested for an assessment and accurate quote, check the page to make sure it's a secure page. Any company requesting personal information should have a secure connection (so only you and the company can see this information). To verify this, look at the address bar and you should see a little lock icon. Or you might see a key icon in the bottom right corner. This indicates that the page you are visiting is secure so information exchanged is safe.

That is how you get quotes online - in a matter of minutes - in the comfort of your own home - drinking your coffee...

Here are a few links to get you started:

Insurance.com
Quick Quote:
Allstate
Esurance
InsWeb.com:
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That's Amore!
by KJ Newby


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"That's Amore" This month we'll be taking a look at online dating. Below is list of internet dating pros and cons that is worth taking a look at if you are considering looking into the wonderful world of internet dating. Also, I will include a few links to reputable internet dating sites.

So here are some of the pros & cons of online dating:

Pros:
  • The variety of people is almost limitless.
  • No matter your background, you are almost guaranteed to find a match.
  • You can arrange group meetings instead individual ones. You can find potential partners with similar interests.
  • Online dating is safe and secure when used with a little common sense.
  • Many sites cater to disabilities.
  • It can be fun - imagine meeting a millionaire?
  • In most cases it's affordable and low cost.
  • If you have a particular background, you can almost definitely find some one with a similar background too.
  • You don''t need to meet people internationally or nationally. You can almost certainly find some one locally.
  • You can just search for friends and not just partners.
  • It's very easy to do. Simply create a profile, place it on the online dating site and start emailing other members.
  • Many dating sites include instant messaging, flirting, photo exchanging, etc.
  • Meet the type of people you want
  • Options on many sites allow you to join for just a few days, a week, a month, quarterly or even a year.
  • If you don't connect with the first person you meet, there are always plenty more fish in the online dating sea.
  • Searching for like-minded people is easy, as this is one of the options available on virtually all sites.

Cons:
  • You can't see the person you are emailing.
  • It's easy to pretend to be some one else as identity is not verified.
  • Due to the anonymous nature of the Web, you may attract some undesirable characters. This may be rare but it can happen. Be careful.
  • On most sites you have to pay a fee. There are some free ones but most of those are not too great.
  • It can be uncomfortable meeting someone on the Internet whom you have never seen before.
  • Some times it's time-consuming.
  • If you're a female, you can usually expect a deluge of emails.
  • If you're a guy, expect to compete for the hot babes.

Now that you have this information, try internet dating and maybe you too can find that special someone. Below are a few links to reputable dating sites. Have fun but be careful!

Eharmony
Cupid
Match

NOTE: If you decide to meet a contact in person, always meet them in a public place to ensure your safety.
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February-How Short Thou Art!
by Jose Acosta


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"Why are there only 28 days in February?" Is it because it comes at such a dreary time of the year and we want to get through it as quick as possible? Did it lose a day to another month? Can we only take so much love (Valentines Day!!)?

Hmmm! Well if the truth be known, all of these reasons have been proposed. Allow me to provide some interesting facts!

First of all, back in the early Roman times, January and February did not even exist as part of the calendar. The year only had around 300 days with 10 months until Numa, a Roman king, decided to add more days via January and February. Since the Romans thought even numbers were unlucky, he made seven of the months 29 days long, and four months 31 days long. But Numa needed one short, even-numbered month to make the number of days work out to 355. February got elected. It was the last month of the year (January didn't become the first month until centuries later) and it was in the middle of winter, and presumably, if there had to be an unlucky month, better to make it a short one.

Many years later, Julius Caesar reorganized the calendar yet again, giving it 365 days. Some say he made February 29 days long, 30 in leap year, and that Augustus Caesar later pilfered a day; others say Julius just kept it at 28. None of this changes the underlying truth: February is so short mainly because it was the month nobody liked much. How about you? Do you like February?

Here are some additional interesting tidbits that occurred in the month of February:

  • February 1st in History: 1790 - Supreme Court convenes for the first time
  • February 2nd in History: 1653 - New Amsterdam (later renamed New York) is founded
  • February 3rd in History: 1877 - The piano piece 'chopsticks' is copyrighted 1966 - First soft landing on the Moon by spacecraft Luna 9
  • February 4th in History: 1783 - England officially proclaims an end to hostilities in America
  • February 5th in History: 1922 - The very first 'Readers Digest' appears on the shelves 1971 - The US Apollo 14 (Shepard and Mitchell) lands on the Moon
  • February 7th in History: 1984: US astronaut Bruce McCandless is the first person to 'Spacewalk'
  • February 8th in History: 1926 - Walt Disney Studios is formed
  • February 12th in History: 1950 - Albert Einstein warns against hydrogen bomb. 1961 - First spacecraft to the planet Venus launched
  • February 13th in History: 1924 - King Tut's tomb is opened
  • February 17th in History: 1883 - Vacant/Engaged toilet door sign patented 1972 - Over 15 million Volkswagen 'Beetle' sold
  • February 19th in History: 1906 - William Kellogg founds his breakfast cereal company
  • February 20th in History: 1962 - John Glenn orbits the Earth three times
  • February 24th in History: 1938 - Nylon's first commercial use, in toothbrush bristles
  • February 28th in History: 1854 - The Republican Party is formally organized 1912 - First ever parachute jump from an airplane
You can find more interesting facts about the month of February at these following links:

Naturalists Almanac
The Straight Dope
THL.net
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Catching up with Colin
by Carol Hall


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Colin has been with Blue Mountain Internet for about 6 months, and works as one of our friendly Customer Service Representatives. Colin is often times that voice you hear when you call on the weekends! So, I visited a bit with him to get to know him better, and decided to share with you!

Editor: Where were you born, and where did you grow up?
Colin: I was born and raised in Eugene, Oregon.

Editor: What was your FIRST paying job?
Colin: I was a bumbling plumber's apprentice for my dad the summer before I started high school.

Editor: Are you named after anyone?
Colin: A family friend; Colin MacGregor.

Editor: Who is your favorite fictional character, and why?
Colin: Dr. Jack Ryan, from the Tom Clancy novels.

Editor: What was the Best advice you ever received, and from whom?
Colin: "Don't have roommates." - My grandma told me and I didn't listen the first time. I did the second.

Editor: If you could write a book about anything at all...what would the title be?
Colin: There needs to be a simple book about the rules of tennis. "Tennis Explained" would be the title.

Editor: What is your "all time favorite" movie?
Colin: GoodFellas. Superb filmmaking.

Editor: What was your very first car?
Colin: 1969 Volkswagen Beetle. It was christened Farf.

Editor: Where is the one place you have never been, that you would like to visit?
Colin: Europe.

Editor: If you could only eat one food, for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Colin: Lasagna.

Editor: Close your eyes and imagine you are in a place called "Perfect" Where are you?
Colin: Strolling a path next to a river on a fall afternoon.
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BMI Expands Support Hours
by Ruben Bybee


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Beginning in January 2006 BMI has expanded the hours that we are open for live chat and email support. We are now available to you from:

Live Chat and Email Support
6 AM until 9 PM (PST) Monday-Friday
9 AM until 6 PM on weekends

Voice Support
7 AM until 8 PM (PST) Monday-Friday
9 AM until 6 PM on weekends
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Let's Talk Viruses
by Mike Rochelle


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"Let's talk viruses". (Unpleasant as it is...) Viruses are those pesky bugs that get into every part of a person's computer. "So how do they get in and what can you do about them?

Viruses can get into your computer when you go to a questionable website and download a program with a virus attached to it. (You may not even realize it has happened) You can also get a virus from so called "free music" download sites like Kazaa or Limewire. The easiest way to get infected is to just open that email from Crazy old cousin Gertrude that never reads her email - she just forwards everything she gets!

Now for the good part. BMI can keep you safe from Gertrude's email! But the rest, well that takes a little bit on your part.,,she's YOUR cousin)

A good anti-virus program that updates automatically will save you from getting viruses from websites, music downloads, a shared computer disk between computers, (and Cousin Gertrude). Many major anti-virus programs come bundled with various other programs that claim to enhance it anti virus ability by adding unwanted or unneeded programs that only slow down your computer or make is unstable. BMI's anti-virus service does NOT do that. It automatically updates, and does not load your computer up with extra stuff!

At BMI, we understand what your anti-virus needs are and therefore offer a wonderful anti-virus program that costs a mere $2.00 per month. And, if you have questions about it, we are here to help. All of us at BMI want your internet travels to be an enjoyable and safe experience.

Want more information, or need to know how: to see if you have a current anti-virus program? Call us...we are here for YOU 800-485-5006 or 509-522-5006
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POM KJN Enterprises
by Jon Alexander


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Blue Mountain Internet's Partner of the Month for February 2006 is: KJN Enterprises in Walla Walla Washington. KJN is owned and operated by our very own Kevin Newby

Kevin Newby of KJN Enterprises holds an AAAS degree in Microcomputer Applications and offers on-sight repairs in the Walla Walla area. Other services he offers are:

  • Custom Computer design including RAID controller configuration
  • Networking Capability
  • Backup and Recovery needs
  • Compatibility Requirements
  • Security and Protection
  • Anti-Virus, Spyware, Adware and Malware detection and removal
  • Software requirements
  • Specialized software implementations: Outlook Express, Outlook, and other email Programs
  • Operating System and Browser Program selection and updates
  • Training, software consulting services and on going maintenance services
  • Pickup and Delivery as well as house-calls
  • MOUS Certified for Microsoft Office Suite

A native of the Walla Walla area, Kevin is familiar with the local computer and networking resources. He has been working with computer and networking design since 1995 and has contacts with hardware, software and professional IT installation experts in the area. With a growing number of people online, he can also expand your existing hardware package to deal with the demanding requirements of today's internet or on-line game system resource needs.

Kevin keeps very busy. When not working onsite as KJN, you can reach him by phone at Blue Mountain Internet. He has been working here as a Customer Service Representative for over 5 years. (And occasionally, he manages to escape for a game of golf.)

KJN charges $45.00 per hour, with a 1 hour minimum. He offers phone quotes and On-Site quotes for design, upgrades, networking, and software training. With many repeat customers, Kevin has a proven track record to custom fit your hardware and software needs to your pocketbook.

He can be contacted by calling: 509 527 0134
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Kudos
by Matt Stephens


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"Thank you very much Colin. You've been very helpful. If you give me your bosses name and email I'll recommend he/she give you a raise."
-Iva M. Baker City, OR

. "I just want to say 'Thank You for My Message Center'. Just counting yesterday and this morning I have deleted my virus portion of over 125 potential viruses, and I "am so thankful this "stuff" doesn't get into my email. Whoever came up with this program, Thank You".
-Geanice M. Waitsburg, WA.

"I just wanted to say, that I just hooked up for your Internet service Nov 30th. A guy named Jose helped me. He walked me through the whole step by step set-up. I just want to say, he was very helpful, patient , and courteous the whole time. It makes someone like myself comfortable walking through the steps, as I probably wouldn't know how to do it otherwise. Thanks!"
-"Anonymous" Milton-Freewater, OR

"Thank you for everything you have done for me. Your friendliness and great patience while dealing with a real 'dummy'. Love you all, you're great!!"
- Doris S. Powell, WY
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The Winners Circle
by Carol Hall


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Congratulations to our January 2006 winners!!

Barbara L of MIlton-Freewater, OR was the winner of December's Find the Santa contest and received a NEW COMPUTER!!!

Charyn Z of Tonasket, WA for the Wordfind and David B. of Enterprise, OR for the Crossword
The lucky puzzle winners each receive 3 FREE months of service from BMI

Congratulations!
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Have an interesting Idea for our newsletter?
Please send your comments or requests to info@bmi.net

DISCLAIMER: Opinions and information herein are solely for the purposes of entertainment of Blue Mountain Internet subscribers. Legal, financial or other important decisions should be made on the bases of extensive research and no specific actions should be taken based on information contained within this newsletter. Blue Mountain Internet, its owners and employees are to be held harmless in any and all matters relating to this publication.


The On Ramp is a monthly publication of Blue Mountain Internet.

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