Vanilla Heat . . .

or Target strikes again.

For the second time in 3 months, this time due to Target’s recent credit card security breach, I’m getting a new Chase VISA debit card, whether I want to or not.

While we were gate guarding last October, I got an email from Chase saying they had seen suspicious activity on my account and they were sending me a new card. Which meant I had go through all my accounts online and change them over to the new card. On top of that I never saw any problems with my account in the first place.

And now because of Target I have to do it all again. The only time we’ve been to Target in the last five years and it had to be during their security breach.


The weather was finally warm enough and dry enough, so we got in a walk this morning for the first time in a couple of weeks. Afterwards, we had planned to sit outside with our coffee, but it turned out to be too windy, although Mister was happy outside for a while.

About 12:15 Jan and I headed up to Pasadena to check in on a long-time client. Jan often goes with me on some of these calls, especially when we’re going to eat at Longhorn Steakhouse afterwards.

Tricia had two machines for me to check out. The first one, a desktop unit I installed a couple of years ago, didn’t really have any particular problems, so I just gave it a general checkup, cleanout, and update. The second machine, a laptop, had a bigger problem. A Conduit Search problem.

Conduit Search is a pesky piece of malware that users usually bring on themselves by clicking something they shouldn’t. Email works fine, but any time you try to go online, it intercepts your request and first takes you to their own search page.

But in this case, the search link was broken so you couldn’t go anywhere. I spent about 45 minutes trying to clear it using some of the easiest methods, but nothing worked, so this one goes home with me for a more in-depth cleaning.

Our next stop was at another client’s to pick an office key so I can get it duplicated. I don’t want a repeat of last weekend when I couldn’t get in the office to work after he changed the lock since last y ear.

But before we got the key duplicated at Lowes, we stopped at the Longhorn Steakhouse next door for dinner. And after a great meal of steaks and potatoes, we’ve decided that Longhorn is our new favorite steak place, beating out Texas Roadhouse, Longhorn is a little more expensive, but not by much, and has a better atmosphere, not quite as noisy. All in all, a nicer experience.

After dinner we stopped at the Lowes next door to get my key duplicated and I came across one of these, a Minute Key machine. And it was fast, and pretty neat.

Minute Key Machine

You press the Start button on the touchscreen, the select House or Car key. Next you insert your key in the slot and the machine tells you if it can duplicate it. You then select from a number of different colored and patterned blanks, and tell it how many copies you want. It gives you the price, you insert your credit card and off it goes. And in just a couple of minutes you’ve got your key. And in less time than it usually takes to just track the key guy down to start with.

Really neat.

After dropping off the master key at the client’s, we headed home with a stop off at Kroger’s for a few things. And I found my new favorite product.

And no, Vanilla Heat’s not a new rap group. It’s International Delight’s new creamer flavor, Vanilla Heat, a vanilla-flavored, spicy creamer. I think I’m in love.

Vanilla Heat Creamer

I tasted it when we got home, and the heat seems to come, not from any type of peppers, but from cinnamon oil, the same ingredient that makes Red Hot’s hot. And the slight cinnamon taste that goes with the heat, along with the vanilla, just adds to the flavor. A great new product.


Thought for the Day:

"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler." – Albert Einstein

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2 Responses

  1. We are waiting for our mail package with two credit cards in it, one is the credit card we used at Target and the other is expiring.
    Conduit Search and friends are a real pain. I have had to clean it out of two of my niece’s computers. On their computers it brought in all kinds of other “helpful” programs, but they all uninstalled normally. To truly clean out Conduit meant using regedit to get rid of a reference or two.
    You will be happy to know that Longhorn Steakhouse has made it to Arizona, with multiple locations in the greater Phoenix area. The one in Mesa is as good as those we have tried back East. I expect them to expand all over the West now.

  2. Try tax roadhouse lake city fl. They have a rare filet that I have not been able to beat across the USA

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