Tag Archives: New Jersey

Time to Think of Others

The weather just isn’t helping those who live in the northeast, specifically coastal residents in New York and New Jersey.  First Superstorm Sandy wreaked havoc throughout the region, and before all services, particularly electricity, can be restored along comes this nor’easter winter storm that is expected to bring more dangerous winds, more flooding, along with snow and plummeting temperatures, and even more power outages.  None of that is good news for an area still reeling from that superstorm.

Sadly there is little to nothing we can do to stop nature and the disasters that nature can bring; but there are things that we can do in the wake of natural disasters and those who are affected by them.

Obviously one thing that we all can do is donate money to any of a variety of disaster relief organizations.  There is so much truth to the statement that money is what makes the world go ‘round, and this holds true for charities too.  Without the generous donations of others no charities would be able to offer the services they are set up to do.  There are several post Superstorm Sandy relief organizations out there:

The most obvious one is the American Red Cross:  redcross.org/hurricane-sandy

Then there is the Brooklyn Recovery Fund:  connect.brooklyncommunityfoundation.org/brooklyn-recovery-fund

There is also the Community FoodBank of New Jersey:  community.njfoodbank.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=506

Habitat for Humanity:  habitat.org/cd/giving/one/donate.aspx?link=470

The Humane Society of the United States:  Humane Society of the United States

The Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City:  nyc.gov/html/fund/html/donate/donate.shtml

The Salvation Army:  donate.salvationarmyusa.org/disaster

Save the Children:  Save the Children

The United Way:  uwsandyrecovery.org

As you can see there are plenty of organizations that we can donate to and lend some sort of assistance for those suffering from Sandy, and now this nor’easter that is bearing down on them.  Of course we needn’t only donate to charities whenever there is a natural disaster.  These organizations can always need donations to carry out their missions, plus we must not forget that the holiday season is merely weeks away.

No More Smiling at New Jersey’s DMV

If residents in New Jersey having to explain away MTV’s mysteriously popular TV show “Jersey Shore” or even the ever so slightly more umm, upscale, “Real House Wives of New Jersey,” hasn’t swiped more than a few smiles off of some resident’s faces.  Let alone the fact that state is almost repeatedly bashed by comedians on late night talk shows, which must manage to take a few more smiles off of those living in New Jersey.  Knowing all of this it wouldn’t surprise me if the only people in New Jersey smiling are those people “starring” on those two “reality” television shows — their probably not just smiling, but laughing:  laughing all the way to the bank that is.  Hopefully though the people of New Jersey have a good sense of humor, and take all of the jokes and bad portrayals in stride, and maybe quite a few get a chuckle out of them too, but, there is something (more like somewhere) that New Jersey residents are told not to smile about; and it is the DMV.

I know, I know, who in their right mind would be smiling while at the DMV?  Just the thought of going there is enough to wipe the smile off of pretty much everyone’s face.  Well, it isn’t the going to, or the being there where the New Jersey DMV is telling people not to smile, it is when you get to the having your photo taken.  Yes, you are not allowed to have, “Exaggerated facial expressions, like smiling widely” when you finally make it to the camera, after the ordeal of spending hours at the DMV — you know the part where you might smile out of relief that this chore is almost over?

The reason for the ban on smiling widely is because it can confuse the facial recognition software that is searching through a photographic database for known bad guys.  For the record though you will notice that it says “Exaggerated facial expressions, like smiling widely” so I am sure a coy little smirk is okay.  Besides, I don’t know too many people out there who smile like they just won a prize when they get their Driver’s License photo taken; but I also don’t ask to see a photo ID of everyone I meet.