I’m virus-free! Thank you, Malwarebytes!

The last two weeks have been a struggle, trying to rescue my laptop from the Antivirus XP. It got into my computer and wreaked havoc in all kinds of ways (see my earlier post on this). Although it was listed as “low risk” I wouldn’t risk doing banking or bill-paying, etc. The worst thing was fake security alerts that kept emails from being sent and shut the system down in the middle of my tasks. The fix?

I looked up the virus on the web and found a free dowload offered by www.Malwarebytes.org. Figuring it couldn’t get much worse, I downloaded the Malware scanner. Well, the trojan riding free in my computer wouldn’t allow it to scan, and kept aborting it. At first there were some error numbers I was supposed to report to “the staff.” Yeah, right. It’s a free program and this cyberspace company is going to bother with my problem? In desperation I found a ‘contact us’ link on the website and reported the numbers. The next day the mail brought a reply from Marcin at Malware with a suggestion. I was so excited to have a reply that I crashed hard when the suggestion didn’t work. Thinking Marcin might actually care, I poured out my problem once again. Another suggestion came in the email.

Well, the suggestion didn’t work at first but I kept trying to run that Malware scan day and night- every chance I got- getting more frustrated as it got farther and farther each time. Today, lo and behold, it aborted mid-scan with a prompt allowing me to remove the viruses found thus far. Once the first batch was gone, the fake virus threat alert went away and it allowed the computer to start in safe mode (Thanks, Marcin). After that, I watched in fascination as it scanned all 95,000 items completely and listed all the lurking bugs. All I had to do was click the ones I wanted removed! The last few weeks were such hell that I just removed them all!!!! It was so satisfying to see them get zapped!

Keep in mind that many of those bugs were cookies put there by sites I visit, to make identifying me easy. Now I’ll have to re-enter all my info but it’s worth it! I even let the Malware remove the animated email Smilies (the cutesy pictures in some earlier posts) when I saw how many adware cookies that smilie toolbar installed. Bottom line? I am so grateful to Malwarebytes that I am going to spring for their ‘real-time’ protection- meaning I’ll buy and install it to keep zapping those unwanted buggers as they appear, instead of waiting until my life is disrupted by a mass takeover. The price? $24.95- one time only (no subscription cost billed every year). I was so impressed by the idea that they offered the removal fix free, and that they responded to my emails, that I’m now a huge fan.

Virus removal can be expensive. I’ve heard shocking stories from other ‘puter people. My problems started because I didn’t want to pay to install the security program (that has kept my desktop safe for 4 years) on my laptop. I told myself I couldn’t afford it. Now I know I can’t afford to go without protection. Who’s sorry now?? I got off lucky. There are thousands of viruses, trojans and other insidious bugs out there and I don’t know if Malwarebytes is the answer for your investation, but I suggest you give it a try.  These folks know what they’re doing!!!


Wilson’s Pizza is a winner!

I wrote previously about the contest for area pizzerias to sell purple elephants for the Alzheimer’s Association. Wilson Pizza in Newfane sold over 700 elephants and won second prize! Let me be the first to congratulate Wendy and staff on a great effort. Next year we’ll have to push for that #1 spot, for sure! Thank you to all those who supported their efforts by buying a purple pachyderm! You’re all winners!

Hurray for Homecoming!

Its Great Britain for the Juniors

After a gorgeous weather week, the gray skies loomed over Barker’s Homecoming parade. Raindrops started to fall just as the parade was getting underway, but it didn’t matter to the spectators or the students. The balloon covered Spirit Floats were loud and proud, and we’ve added the color purple to the pallete for the freshmen.

My favorite float was the Sophomore Egyptian float. I know that traditionally the Seniors win, and their giant Buddha was a sight to behold, but I still thought Egypt was the best. The “freshmates” chose Australia and the Juniors did a great English float with big Ben, the Queen’s Guard and London Bridge. The Barker Alumni Association had a float this year, with some young-at-heart alumns aboard. All in all, a great job all around.

The parade is one of  those long-standing traditions that we need to support and preserve. It’s a rite of passage for our young people and it brings back memories for the old folks! Our little parade may seem hokey compared to some elaborate ones by big school districts, but we’re proud of it! Now we just have to win that football game tomorrow. GO RAIDERS!!

It’s Homecoming Week in Barker!

We couldn’t have a better weather week for the Barker High School Homecoming festivities! It’s been beautiful! The students have been gearing up all week for the annual Homecoming Parade, and the theme this year is “Countries.” The photo above is from 2006, when Superheroes reigned, and this was a really cool Superman float with a revolving Daily Planet (That’s Shawn Gendrue as the Man of Steel- he’s a senior this year). Last year’s theme was Storybook Characters and I didn’t get to snap many photos because I was busy being a judge!  This week’s parade happens at 5:30 p.m. on Friday an we’re hoping the winds are a little less fierce! A lot of work goes into the floats, so get out there and cheer as they pass by! This photo was last year’s Class of 2008 Spirit Float and we all know how LOUD those classes can get! This is the week when jello gets used as hair dye and kids turn up  multi-hued to show class colors. Fun! Fun! Fun! be there!

The big Homecoming game against Attica happens at 1:30 on Saturday, with the Homecoming Dance at 7. Have fun, everyone! Go Raiders!!


Save Oct. 7 for the ICMH Chinese auction!

Auction fans will not want to miss the Chinese auction to benefit Intercommunity Memorial Hospital, sponsored by the Appleton branch of the ICMH Auxiliary. The event at the Olcott Fire Hall is set for October 7. Doors open at 5 p.m.; drawings begin at 7 p.m. Winners must be present. Admission is free, with coffee, cookies and cider for guests. In addition, there will be pizza, pop and bottled water for sale. Prize or basket donations will be gratefully accepted. Please call 778-9731 for information or donations. Seating is limited, so plan to get there early. We’re lucky to have Newfane Hospital right here in our community and your support is appreciated. There are always great prizes, and lots of them, so come early to get a seat! 

                     Cookies Pizza Slice Coffee 



“Heart Attack Grill” not for the faint-hearted


An email forward of pictures of monster cheeseburgers and scantilly nurse-clad waitresses was so intriguing that I had to try to track it. Sure enough, the Heart Attack Grill does exist, in Phoenix, and they dish out a hefty portion of beef and humor. The burgers are named after heart attack surgeries, the one above being a “quadruple bypass burger.” I know, I know. All you healthy eating folks are cringing in disgust at the thought of all that cholesterol, but hold on… they advertise that their french fries are fried in pure lard!

The restaurant has gotten into trouble because their “nurses” (waitresses) in cute nurse outfits and stethoscopes, allegedly demean true nurses and mislead the customers (huh?) and they have to carry a disclaimer that thier nurses are not certified. How nutty is that?

Lest you think I’m knocking the place, I want to admit that I would LOVE to get my hands on a double-bypass burger myself (hold the onions)! I’m sure eating there every day, to the exclusion of other foods, might not be wise, but they do say they serve up the taste worth dying for! Seriously, here’s a restaurant that doesn’t pull any punches, proudly markets their product, and to hell with the food police!  I’ll bet you don’t know HALF of what you’re eating with so-called healthy food products!

The website (www.heartattackgrill.com) is hilarious, and I was instantly transported back to my youth with some old-time advertisements on their family page, touting lard and candy cigarettes. In a very tongue-in-cheek way, you realize this is no place to take the kids! Yes, we did this to ourselves over generations and it’s not any easier to give up red meat than it is cigarettes. Sure, I’d love to be able to afford a diet of prime rib and prime steak, but the classic cheeseburger is a delight for carnivores on a budget! The Heart Attack Grill takes it to epic proportions and makes no bones about it. As for the nurses, Hooters has been titillating customers for years, so what’s the difference? As a woman, I’m not offended at all. I’d just like to know if any women have tackled that quadruple-bypass burger and walked out unaided! Even I couldn’t handle that!

The email forward was titled “Only in America” and it is true that some folks are able to parlay adsurdity into profit with crazy ideas, but this isn’t all that absurd. We’re a burger-loving nation and they proudly roll out the king (and emporer) of burgers. Way to go! After seeing the stalls of fried bugs on a stick that the crowds in Bejing lined up for, I’m ready to stand up for the cheeseburger as an all-American food! Now, how can I get one one delivered from Phoenix???

Old Fashioned Farm Festival at Babcock Cobblestone House

      Farmer     Don’t miss Somerset’s Old Fashioned Farm Festival  from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday at the Babcock Cobblestone House and farm. Sponsored by the Town Of Somerset Historical Society, the annual Farm Festival is a trip back in time and a delight for young and old and with the move to fall, visitors will find volunteers plowing with draught horses and harvesting feed corn. Corn stalks for fall decorating may be available for purchase.

         Horse 1   Horse and tractor-drawn hayrides will run continuously.  The beautifully restored cobblestone house will be open for tours, with historical society volunteers showing how residents cooked, heated their homes and lived over 150 years ago. Artisans and crafters throughout the grounds will demonstrate quilting, broom making, spinning with wool and dog hair, chair rushing and caning, basket weaving, rope making, a knitting machine and blacksmithing. Some have handcrafted goods for sale. Do-it-yourselfers will marvel at the wood shop and see a large antique Adirondack lumber planer on display. Antique cars, tractors and engines will be on display, some with demonstrations.

 The Barker Community Band will perform from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Hot dogs, hamburgers and beverages will be available throughout the day and the Barker Lions will serve their famous chicken barbecue beginning at 11 a.m. This is a rain or shine event for the whole family. For more information on the event, contact current society president Scott Schotz at 795-9577.Antique 1