For the next three days, I don’t have to do anything.

Or, more correctly, I will be doing a zillion things – a sort of “George-like impression of a Chinese Great Leap Forward” and it’s all made possible by what I call the tri-level checklist approach.

Let’s start at the beginning, though.

First thing to mention is that checklists are invaluable.  We use them in flying all the time.  There’s a pre-flight checklist, a pre-start checklist, a run-up checklist (CIGARS – controls, instruments, gas, attitude set, run-up and check the mags and carb heat, and a safety check), a take-off checklist, a cursing cruising check-list, a descent checklist, and a landing set-up checklist.

Oh…and followed by the shut-down check list.

Boring flying stuff?  No.  While I suppose every has the idea that pilots (and nuclear materials workers and HAZMAT personnel) use checklists, there are very few people that run around with a dog-eared notepad in their shirt pocket like I do when peak performance is desired.

Checklists are also one of the most obvious – yet under-appreciated – parts of being a high performance executive.  I’m not saying it is impossible to succeed without a checklist.  There are always exceptions to every rule.

But if your life begins to get even the least bit complicated, there will be a time and place that you will skip the check list and pay the price.

When flying, mistakes from the use of checklists range from a mild inconvenience (like an unplanned fuel stop) to disastrous:  Forgot to top off (or measure) the fuel and ran out of gas.  Something which (*rather amazingly) accounts for something like 80% of small airplane accidents.

Pilots – like most folks – believe they can ‘work the problem in their head” and yet, even when you’re a really good, safety conscious pilot, if you don’t use a checklist, you may notice after a half hour at cruise at say 6-thousand 500 feet, that you left the engine boost pump on.

No harm, no foul, except that it’s a mistake and mistakes can what a person?

Successful people, too, use checklists.

The effective executive knows each of the major points that must be covered in a sales presentation in order to make a sale, for example.  Leave one of the points out, and your odds of making a sale drop significantly.

This is also why (even though it is mind-numbing work) why telemarketing outfits almost universally keep people “on a script” when talking to people.  It makes sure that none of the points are missed.

When you are “growing the business” there’s nothing like building up the “secret sauce” collection of checklists that ensure you cover everything the customer wants – and by doing this consistently, your batting average (in whatever field) remains exceptionally high.

When the batting average is high, there’s more word of mouth and the business grows.

But despite their provable benefit, most people don’t use a checklist – for reasons that may range from thinking there are too smart to need one, to not being willing to use a “paper brain” to help insure success.

Since I did most of the work on this weekend’s Peoplenomics™ report on Thursday, today will be what my buddy Gaye (at and I have over the years come to call a “M.S.H. Day”  (As in “make sh*t happen day.)

The first level of the list ( Master) is a list of the important things to be accomplished for the day.

On today’s Master List are a number of projects that I need to get knocked off.

Let’s say it includes:

  • Airplane maintenance projects
  • Office work for client
  • Office work for Peoplenomics
  • Yard Project
  • Supplies for Saturday project
  • Peoplenomics chart prep.

OK, simple enough – and short – which a good, focused Master List should be.a  Just a word of three.

Under each of these projects is a “details” list where the specific actions take place.  So under the airplane maintenance projects, the details list for that include:

  • Blow out hangar (last of June bugs)
  • Check tire pressures
  • Add AvBlend to oil (*fresh oil change just done at annual)
  • Paint a small spot on cowling
  • Clear-coat the new prop spinner
  • Unmask nose gear, apply guard covering
  • Vacuum interior carpets and Lysol
  • Wash wing-walk (antiskid near door)
  • Spray spider killer on black widow’s webs

As you can see, the work order has been penciled out in the details list.  Cleaning out the dirt and dust and then wheeling the plane outside makes sense before painting.  And the last project is where a few shots of black widow spray go on and then I close the door and go home to the next list.

The third level of the list is the Time and Materials list.

This drops down from each of those tasks I will get done today.

  • Leaf blower  (10 min)
  • Air compressor, tire gauge, screwdriver (7 min)
  • AvBlend, oil funnel, rag  (3 min)
  • Paint, masking tape, masking paper, Scrub-it  (7 min)
  • Clear-coat spray…(8 min)

As you can see, in this time and materials part, you go through every step of what you will be touching to get a certain task done and next thing you know (since travel time is always the same) I can tell you I should be returning phone calls, and such, back in the office by 11:30 AM. 

Or, if the weather doesn’t improve, I can flip projects on the master list to move things around.

I don’t go into useless levels of detail – usually single words, except for the materials.

But the nice thing about checklists is they allow a person to offload a whole bunch of what would otherwise be stress inducers, put them on paper, and then simply execute what’s on the checklist and any idiot can  do that.

Ure’s truly being a prime example of one of them.

But if you want to get the most done, in the shortest time without errors, there is only one thing that works – and that’s a checklist. 

The 10-minutes a day, or so, that it takes will keep you marvelously on task and you’ll become amazed at how much you can actually accomplish.

The Master List and the Details List are what get rolled into work manuals like the typical Policy and Procedure Manuals that make it possible for companies to plug and play employees.

And then the detail level lets business process engineering types (ahem…) take the processes, add checklists (as in edit lists) and turn everything into a highly functional business flow software system to eliminate as many…oh let’s not go there….

About that Internet Outage

Turns out, says my hosting service, that UrbanSurvival had two service outages on Thursday.  Both related to a hypervisor failure.

What’s a hypervisor?  (You apparently don’t build a lot of virtual machine servers…).  the answer is over here.

hypervisor or virtual machine monitor (VMM) is a piece of computer software, firmware or hardware that creates and runs virtual machines.

A computer on which a hypervisor is running one or more virtual machines is defined as a host machine. Each virtual machine is called a guest machine. The hypervisor presents the guest operating systems with a virtual operating platform and manages the execution of the guest operating systems. Multiple instances of a variety of operating systems may share the virtualized hardware resources.

And since UrbanSurvival is on a virtual private server (VPS) to get its usual blazing fast speeds, when the hypervisor went to lunch, so did our reports for about 45-minutes in all.

But that isn’t the weird part:  At about the same time (and ostensibly other reasons) Gaye’s server glitched out about the same time at www.backdoorsurvival.ccom

Now I can’t speak for her, but seems to me just a very odd/strange thing that both of our websites just happened to have nearly simultaneous outages.

What are the odds?  Well, 100%.  But the odds of two highly reputable sites dealing with eye-opening and prepping going at the same time?  Well, that begins to have a kind of odor to it, if you know what I mean.

Light as Low Power DC

I think I mentioned the other day how my crackpot/loon understanding of light as a healing modality working, may have to do with being able to stimulate nerves.  The idea being that when a nerve fires, it’s sort of like a chemical photo-diode…and the small voltage generated is large enough to fire the next nerve up the line enroute to the brain.

Well, here comes a related story spied by Madison Ave. Mike and it says lost memories (as from amnesia) may be recoverable using tuned light therapy.  Also known as photo biomodulation amongst us aware and edgy types.

There is another keyword to learn and keep handy when you add photo biomodulation to your stock screener searches:  optogenetics.

A couple of other gold star winning catches from our NY Fashion Scion:

An ingredient in green tea may reduce risk for men who may get prostate cancer…

And how about this one?  “Brain training induces lasting brain & mental health gains for veterans, civilians with brain injury”

Checklists, or not, there is just no way there’s enough time in the day to read interesting and new stuff like this.

The Dangers of TPP

While  the Senate has bent over on TPP, there is still a chance the bill could be stopped in the House and reader Ray offers some common sense thinking on point:

The Obama Administration has twice used a “bait & switch” to push legislation.
In this instance, they are pushing TPA (Trade Promotion Authority, commonly called “Executive Fast Track” or just “fast-track”) and TPP (the Trans-Pacific Partnership) as a single piece of legislative dreck. This stunt causes serious confusion, and enables the Administration (and yes, I consider Boehner, McConnell, Ryan, and other sundry Republican {note the capital “R”} “leaders” to be part of Obama’s Administration) to argue “fast-track” when presented a question regarding TPP, and argue TPP when queried on “fast-track.”
“Fast-track” enables EOP to negotiate trade and tariffs treaties, unencumbered by legislative process. A treaty so-negotiated, isn’t codified, but then goes to Congress for an “up/down” vote (simple majority.) An “up” vote codifies it; a “down” vote sends it to committee, where Congress must hammer out the things they don’t like, or kill it. According to United States law, treaties must pass the Senate by a two-thirds majority, to be ratified. “Fast-track” is in direct violation of section 8 of the United States Constitution, but like any law, rule, or regulation, once passed, it must go through the court system to be nullified — that same caste court system which disavows jury nullification because people who’re smart enough to decide the personal or financial fate of another human being ain’t smart enuf ta decide da fate of a bad law….
TPP is a trade agreement between Canada, the U.S., and a number of Pacific Rim nations. The entirety of its contents are secret, and public discussion by any of the few Congressoids who’ve been privy to any part of its contents is strictly verboten.
On May 3rd, Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions published an “alert,” warning of TPA and TPP. It doesn’t mention any of the actual contents of TPP, yet some of his fellow congressoids discussed the possibility of censure or arrest, as a consequence of his alert.
I strongly suggest that anyone who isn’t perfectly clear in their understanding of fast-track, TPP, or both, read Sessions’ alert. It may (or may not, by now) be found on his website, but it is permalinked at Breitbart News, at:

As Ben Wikler of  wrote over here

“…(But) Democrats just aren’t buying it. The reason is simple: Buyer’s remorse. Democrats helped Bill Clinton pass NAFTA in 1993, only to find that none of its promises came true. The reality of NAFTA’s impact can be seen in shuttered factories across the country. Today, thanks to two decades of patient organizing by elected officials like Sherrod Brown (who served in the House until 2006), U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Connecticut), and outside advocates like Public Citizen’s Lori Wallach, the overwhelming share of the Democratic caucus has publicly committed to opposing fast track….”

I might go so far as to suggest that when the formerly the Constitutional republic,m the U.S.A. starts passing “secret laws” without the possibility of informed public debate that it is no longer the United States of America.

I don’t know what to call it, other than maybe the Corporatized States of America, but that’s the reality of life at the end of time, I suppose.  It’s been clear since the corrupt Citizen’s United decision that corporations have more rights that humans and I see nothing to change that opinion on the horizon.

Except, maybe EMP.

Thinking Points:  Generational Friction

Thinking point from Oilman2:

You and I have touched on these generational issues – well, follow this link:

Forget the article – it is click bait.

What IS interesting is the vitriol in the comments section….

More and more it looks like the dissolution of the family, money worship, lack of empathy and so much more is coming home to roost. Things are hard, but what feels different this time is how supremely divided most people seem to be, and how very willing to criticize and play the blame-game, rather than listen and have civil dialog.

My relations with kids are not like most – very much intentionally. THEY are the future – we are not, at this stage in our lives, except as guides and helpers. By 2025 most boomers will be dead or too old for their current shitshow du jour.

But if the comments in this article are any indication, there is yet another chasm yawning wide…


Yep – my son gave Elaine and me a really fine compliment last time he came to visit:  “You guys aren’t old…you’re…contemporary…” 

In today’s world, not much higher compliment a fellow can get from a 30-something.  Only fools fail to help them…because they really are the future.  And it all starts with your own family and tribe.

Have a good weekend, make a list.  And write when you break-even…