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Earn Money Using Inexpensive Electric Chainsaw to Help Clear Storm Damage

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Create Your Own Job Security

Harbour Freight Portland Chainsaw

The summer storm season has arrived and throughout the nation tornadoes, hurricanes and even violent thunderstorms will bring down trees and shrubs that will need clearing from people’s yards. One way to earn money is by helping people who cannot do it themselves remove the debris. This can start with hand tools such as axes, knives and hand saws about which I have previous videos and supplemented these hand tools with an inexpensive Portland Chainsaw from Harbor Freight.

I tested this chainsaw on a freshly fallen pecan limb (relative of the hickory tree) that fell in my back yard that was close enough to the house for two extension cords to reach. In the video below I describe how I successfully worked limbs up to 6-inches in diameter with this saw. This is some serious cutting, but the saw was up to it. The electric chainsaw has limitations. The first…

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Written by hoveysmith

July 22, 2018 at 8:39 pm

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Paris, the Pitt Bull, Finds a Home

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Paris 2

Things were not looking very favorable when I rescued Paris and his brother Hector from a dumpster site last year. The little pups had teeth and fur and had obviously been abandoned at the trash dump in the hope that someone would take them home.

I did. They had their first trips to the vet the next day and got their puppy shots and worming. Pups like these are at the “chew the house down stage,” and had to be confined to the kitchen until they became more civilized some three months later. Obviously litter mates, Paris continued to look like a pit bull; but his brother Hector was shaped and colored more like a black Lab. They made a salt and pepper pair, as Scotties often are.

Hector and Paris in the hands of the Law.

Early on they wound up in trouble with the law. Paris, apparently the instigator, took to leading Hector off in miles-long wood rambles. They were often found across a paved 4-lane highway in a person’s yard who owned two German Shepherds who, she said, would kill them if they could get at them. Certainly from the amount of barking that was going on they acted as if they had that intent.

The longest they were gone was four days when a thunderstorm came, washed out their scent trail and they could not find their way back home. Friends and neighbors also brought them  back even though they were sometimes wet and muddy.

I had a dog pen which I renovated and attempted to confine them in it during the mornings when they were most apt to take off. I hated to keep them penned all the time and let them out when I was working in the yard or when I thought it was so hot that they would not be interested in running. Sometimes this worked and sometimes it did not.

The dogs’ personalities were always different. Paris was the more affectionate and wanted to crawl into your skin with you or even with strangers – which does not sound like what most people think a Pit Bull would be like. Hector was also affectionate, but not so much. He was physically larger than his brother, and he developed a more square-shaped head and snout, typical of Labs.

I had house trained them starting with a steel kennel in the kitchen, then letting them into the living room, but kept them in these two rooms of the house. Although it took longer for Paris, in time they became less destructive and came to recognize what was “doggy stuff” vs. “daddy stuff.” I had to make trips from time to time and could travel with Hector, but Paris had to stay at the vet. Hector in the meantime was welcomed at a friend’s house where he served as a companion to Charley, a much larger mixed breed dog that weighs about 100 pounds compared to Hector’s 30 pounds. These two now have play dates when I fly out from Atlanta on business trips. He is also welcomed at a nursing home where he visits with my friend’s mother.

The only solution that I saw was to separate the two dogs. I asked to see if anyone would take Paris, including on the web, and got one  response each from Alaska and Wisconsin – not very practical from a logistical point of view. I had a long trip coming and was to the point of putting Paris down, rather than boarding him out and still facing the run-away problem when I returned home.  I was to leave on Saturday and would kill him on Friday before I left. Paris was a good dog and would make a fine companion, if I could find an appropriate owner.

By this time I was talking to everyone I ran into about the dog. One of those people was a cashier at a local store. She said that her favorite dog had been a Pitt Bull and she had never had a more affectionate, loving dog. I told her that Paris fitted this description. For a time she hesitated, then agreed. There was a potential problem that she also had three kittens that she had sort of inherited. Nonetheless, she agreed to take him and either keep him herself or find another home for him.

Paris knew something was up, but did not know quite what. If there was ever a look of apprehension on a dog’s face I think that this picture captures it.

Paris last day at home.

There was a miscommunication and the lady could not find the way to my house on the day she was supposed to come to see him. Ultimately, we reconnected and I positioned Paris on the back porch to meet his new owner. I gave her his rabies papers, and she said she would come back the next day to get him.

The return visit was brief. We talked about dog food, feeding times, methods of confinement, being house broken, and I had questions about her kittens.  Paris, now about a year old, with powerful jaws could easily kill a kitten if he were inclined. I offered to lend her a dog crate, but it would not fit into her car.

Paris seemed ready to go and snuggled up beside his new owner in the vehicle, just as he did with me when he was in my truck. As they drove away, I imagined that I would get a phone call in the night having to do with the dog, but none came. Paris Loving up on Windy

About mid-morning the next day my phone did ring. Paris’ new owner said that they had got through the night fine, and she just wanted to know what shampoo I used on him, as Pitts have sensitive skins. This information was exchanged. From later conversations at the store the issue with the kittens has been resolved. They have apparently learned to “play nice” with each other. When one of the kittens gets too rambunctious Paris will grab him by the neck and hold him softly, just to let it know that it is time to calm things down a bit.  From all indications Paris is adjusting quite well in his new surroundings and has been taken into a loving household.

Hector, who had never been separated from his brother for more than a few days, obviously missed him; but during the next week became accustomed to there being just he and me in the house. Most significantly, I can leave him in the yard, and he is staying close to home. I had a latent fear that perhaps I had sent the wrong dog away, and Hector would run by himself.  That was not the case and this dog issue that took a year to resolve ended happily for all.



Written by hoveysmith

July 17, 2018 at 8:42 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

Create Your Own Job Security Published

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Create Your Own Job Security

Ben's front cover Create JobSpecial Promotion on Amazon for $10.99 vs. regular price of $19.99.

My new business book for the non-business major Create Your Own Job Security: Plan to Start Your Own Business at Midlife is now available as a softcover edition on You can see a Create Space Preview of the book at As an early promotion books sold through Amazon will have a reduced price of $10.99 compared to the $19.95 regular price.

My seven-month long stent at writing, designing and producing the book is now over. I am still working on the e-book version which will be published through Book Baby and will also be available on Amazon as well as all other e-book outlets.

Publicity about the book is progressing. Yesterday I did an interview with radio host Francisca in the Boston area and am booking other radio and TV shows at the moment. I am also…

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Written by hoveysmith

June 22, 2018 at 11:53 am

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Three-Five Days Before Publication of “Create Your Own Job Security” on Amazon: Coming Teliseminar

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Create Your Own Job Security

Ben's front cover Create JobBook to be available from in 3-5 days

After seven months of working with “Create Your Own Job Security: Plan to Start Your Own Business at Midlife,” the final proof copy, which involved one complete re-submission of the manuscript,  has been approved. Copies of the book will first be available as the softcover edition on  I may be as long as six-weeks away from having the e-book version available on Amazon and other outlets.

I am presently completing a companion workbook for  a teliseminar on this topic. This seminar will enable me to work remotely with groups of people who can sign up from any location.  These will be live events, probably in September. I may offer more complete courses as demand warrants.

For the initial one-to-two hour teliseminar, I will e-mail the workbook to participants a week prior to the seminar so that they can largely fill…

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Written by hoveysmith

June 19, 2018 at 10:53 am

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Re-Proofing the Proofed Proofs

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Create Your Own Job Security

Ben's front cover Create Job

A new version of my cover showing a vanishing American worker fending off the perils of being downsized, merged out of a job because his position is now redundant or being dismissed in order to cut payroll to provide bonuses for company executives.

Many of those who still read books criticize us authors for minor typos and errors in our books.  They assert that for their money they should have an absolutely perfect product. The harshest criticism invariably comes from those who have never written a book, and what’s more, are not likely to ever write one. It is intellectually easy to throw darts at someone’s work while contributing nothing in return. In the case of my present book, Create Your Own Job Security: Plan to Start Your Own Business at Midlife, I am now going through the proof copies of the manuscripts sent by Amazon’s Create Space who…

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Written by hoveysmith

June 15, 2018 at 1:48 pm

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Smart Phones Reduce Cost of Printed Handout Materials at Trade Shows

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Create Your Own Job Security

Smart Phone with book cover

Engaging passers-by in an interesting way about your product can encourage them to take a photo of it with their Smart Phone and save you money that would otherwise be spend on cards and single-sheet handout materials.

At the International Knife Show in Atlanta, I was exhibiting my knives as well as announcing the publication of my new business book, Create Your Own Job Security: Plan to Start Your Own Business at Midlife.  Because the softcover version of the book was not available at the time of the show, I only had a copy of the book’s cover to represent that product.

A very successful approach was to engage teen and 20-somethings who were walking by with an opening line, “I have something for you.” In almost every one of 50 such approaches, I would attract from one to three people at a time to my booth. Although I was…

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Written by hoveysmith

June 10, 2018 at 3:57 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

He Who Shall Not Be Named and Other Self-Publishing Surprises With Book Baby and Create Space

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Create Your Own Job Security

Cover Create Your Own Job Security Best

In almost every case there is some production issue that rises up and bites us authors in the butt.

“He who shall not be named,” is a well-known line from the Harry Potter series of books, but I did not expect to find this sentiment in the book business. To cut production expenses, I decided to publish the softcover edition of my new business book, “Create Your Own Job Security: Plan to Start Your Own Business at Midlife,” using’s Create Space ( publishing platform. This has the considerable advantage of no up-front costs if you submit PDF files that fit their formats. However, it does grant exclusive sales rights to Amazon for the title.

I wanted my book to be able to reach other book outlets, so I elected to produce the e-book through Book Baby ( For a fee they will design the book to fit all available…

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Written by hoveysmith

June 10, 2018 at 10:33 am

Posted in Uncategorized