Vote for my powers!

In each of my posts you can vote for which super powers you think I used best. Learn more about these powers and my missions at //Building Imagination — the ARG

Powers are:

Teamwork--Creativity--Home Field Advantage--Knowledge Sharing--Resourcefulness--Spark--Environmentalism--Vision

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Mission 9: Full circle, let's talk about mold?

So, taking from my most recent unpleasantness, I've decide to write some information here about molds.. Why? Because most apartment complexes made in the seventies have this issue, and a lot of them seem intent on doing nothing about it. My own complex is no exception, so here goes:

Molds can be found almost anywhere; they can grow on virtually any organic substance, as long as moisture and oxygen are present. There are molds that can grow on wood, paper, carpet, foods, and insulation. When excessive moisture accumulates in buildings or on building materials, mold growth will often occur, particularly if the moisture problem remains undiscovered or unaddressed. It is impossible to eliminate all mold and mold spores in the indoor environment. However, mold growth can be controlled indoors by controlling moisture indoors.

Mold is a fuzzy growth on moist organic matter by several types of fungi. Mildew is mold growing on fabric.
The quantity of mold fragments and spores needed to cause health problems varies from person to person.  Besides inhalation, people can become exposed to mold through skin contact and eating moldy food.
Toxic molds can produce several toxic chemicals called mycotoxins that can damage your health. These chemicals are present on the spores and small mold fragments that are released into the air.
In high concentrations, mold fragments, spores, and mycotoxins can trigger symptoms even in individuals who have no allergies.
Molds reproduce by spreading microscopic spores. Mold spores waft through the indoor and outdoor air continually. When mold spores land on damp organic material, such as wood, paper, feathers, hair, cellulose, petroleum products, rubber, carpet, etc., they may begin growing and digesting the material.
Some molds live in temperatures below freezing, and some like it as warm as 122° F.  Molds primarily thrive and become a problem when the relative humidity level is above 60%, with temperatures between 50 and 90 degrees  F. (10 to 32 degrees C.)  and a pH from 3 to 8. Molds also tend to be more robust in poorly ventilated areas with little air movement to disrupt their growth.
There is no practical way to eliminate all mold and mold spores in the indoor environment; the way to control indoor mold growth is to limit moisture. During humid weather, avoid excessive ventilation and use an air conditioners and/or dehumidifier to keep relative humidity below 60%. Sealing air leaks in the building's exterior and using a mechanical ventilation system to provide fresh filtered air can help to reduce entry of mold spores and make it easier to keep indoor relative humidity below 60%.
Indoor mold growth usually can be seen or smelled. In most cases, if visible mold growth is present, sampling is not needed. There are no health or exposure-based standards that individuals can use to evaluate a mold sample. The amount of mold it takes to cause illness varies from person to person.

Now the important one:

"Black Mold" is a term commonly used to describe a slimy, greenish-black substance which can result in serious health risk. This infamous mold is also known as Strachybotrys chartarum and more often as Strachybotrys atra. It has been closely linked to the death of babies from respiratory bleeding, and as a contributing factor to illnesses such as asthma and bronchitis. According to the CDC(Center of Disease Control), this mold is responsible for over "100 cases of lung disorders".

Virtually everyone has one type or another of mold somewhere in their home. Although not all types are toxic, it is sometimes difficult to distinguish types without lab testing. Thus it is imperative to treat and remove all molds as if they're potentially harmful. Regardless of the type of mold found, a home containing mold is not essentially a healthy home.

Mold spores are very easily transported to different areas by attaching themselves to various hosts. These hosts would include people, animals, shoes and they even enter through open windows and doors. The spores then thrive and grow where it is damp and moist. Very toxic molds can develop from water seepage, and while black mold is "less common than other mold species it is not rare".
Areas and substances where black mold can be found include water soaked wood, ceiling tiles, wall paneling, cardboard, even items made of cotton. Black mold can grow on drywall and insulation and can infest areas in the floors, walls and ceilings.

Moisture is essential to the growth of black mold, and when it is wet it is shiny in appearance. If you were to physically touch a spot of black mold, it would feel slimy and would smear on the area.

When you are contemplating clean up of black mold, you need to verify the extent of the problem. Many of the infested areas will be relatively small and be a result of small leaks or plumbing problems. After discovering the root of the problem and rectifying it, you can disinfect the area with bleach. A mixture of one cup bleach to a gallon of water is sufficient to disinfect the area. Apparently adding a touch of dish soap to the mixture will also aid in dissolving accumulated grease and dirt in the area.

You are to apply the bleach mixture to the moldy area and leave it to saturate the area for approximately fifteen minutes. After this you must take care to thoroughly dry the cleaned area.

Spores from dried mold are very dangerous and should be cleaned with caution. You should never scrape or scratch at dried mold as the spores would then be released into the air and pose an inhalation risk. A respiratory mask and eye protection are necessary and adequate clothing to prevent skin contact is recommended.

If the problem is more internal such as on insulation or throughout a carpet, the only solution is to remove and replace the items. As well an infested area of over 2ft is considered a "heavily infested" area and professional help should be consulted. Mold problems resulting from flooding should also be managed professionally to avoid possible health risk.

According to the CDC, there are some preventative measures you can personally take to battle black mold. The following are some of their suggestions; keep the humidity of the house down, make sure there is adequate ventilation inside the home(especially in the kitchen and bathroom), add mold inhibitors to new paint before painting, use mold killing products to clean and do not use carpet in the bathroom.

Black mold issues are something everyone should be aware of and know how to combat. Search through any news source and you will see that toxic mold is a common cause for school closings. If the school board will go through such measures to eradicate the problem then we should be just as cautious. It is also important to remember that like all other types of fungus, there are some people who may be more sensitive to the effects of black mold. People who have allergies, respiratory disease or any type of immune suppressing disease should be especially wary of this toxic mold.
Symptoms of black mold poisoning:
Common symptoms of black mold poisoning are:
  • Uneasiness in respiration
  • Headaches
  • Cough
  • Red eyes
  • Development of rashes and hives on skin
  • Nausea
  • Memory loss
  • In some cases, people experience bleeding in lungs
  • Lethargy
  • Dizziness
  • Lack in concentration
  • Problem caused due to irritation in mucous membranes
  • Asthma
  • Allergic reactions (such as itching of nose, runny nose etc.) of respiratory and/or nervous system etc
  • Irregularity in blood pressure
  • Damaged digestion and respiratory system
  • Infections of urinary track, problems in urination etc.
  • Pain in liver and other internal organs
  • High level or prolonged exposure to mold can lead to infertility in the patient

.If you like black widows.. mold.. and having car broken into..

From: -Anonymous-
Date posted: 5/5/2009
Years at this apartment: 2007 - 2008

My car was broken into multiple times.
I saw bums around a lot.
I see neighbors smoking weed and drinking alcohol in parking lot.
Im able to hear neighbors a lot. Its noisy.
There is this weird one that is always staring at me and sometimes mumbles stuff under his breath.. prejudice racial comments.. Its like hes timed my work schedule and comes out whenever i do, just to stare and acts like hes talking to someone on phone when hes not.. not great neighborhood. i pass by this street 1 street over.. whats with the evil name on street sign.. Hell Court ..
I noticed mold in air conditioner vents right after i moved in.. Under the shower door there was mold already with hair and other gunk stuck inside. After few months, the shower drain started smelling funky.. then started molding around windows, had to leave them open a lot and clean with bleach often. Really paranoid though when they are open because there are a lot of bugs outside and a lot of black widows right outside my windows/sliding door.. Ive seen them running around my apartment often enough =/ .. they told me they regularly do pest control on bugs but havent through whole year there.
My washer smelled like vomit throughout the whole year and they did not do anything about it..
I wouldnt recommend this place unless you could tolerate all of this.

Read more:

Learn all you can about black mold, and mold in general. How is it removed? What is the steps in true removal of molds?

Using your chosen super hero powers, how would you hero/heroine stop the black mold and issues with apartments not cleaning it?

With all the mold properly removed and apartments safer, how would the people react? Let us know!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Mission 8: Let's get Art back to Modesto!


I went to the website that was posted and saw a great deal of good things to watch or do! However being a poor college student such as myself I thought it would be better to go to an event that didn't cost much -peers another direction- So... I went to MJC and found out that they were having a musical event coming soon and since I know people there I thought it the best thing to do!

Since the music event isn't until later in the month I will have not gone to one by the time you read this dear readers! I have however gone to several musical events there in the past and I even went to a really awesome production entirely done by the students.. You heard me, ENTIRELY by the students. Costumes, makeup, everything was done by the students, even the backgrounds, and stage work all done by the students. They started with the small production called 'Trial by Jury' it was then followed by several shorts of various things including, Wicked, The sound of Music, and various other small numbers. The acting was great and with the low budget and work they did remarkably well and received standing ovations every night to a full house! That is what art is all about!

If I had my way, I would use my resources to help take down the cost of the art productions and help to get more people of all walks of artistic life to come here to Modesto and get involved. With all the other improvements that we've done so far I think that in this new Modesto the super heroes and I have made are more than perfect for getting the big names here and getting people to go see them!

The ARG may soon be coming to a close, but the curtain won't close on art in Modesto!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Mission 7: A liesurely day going away? I don't think so!


What kind of things are there to do in Modesto? Plenty! You could go to one of two movie theaters. Or you could go to one of two bowling alleys. How about going to the Gallow Center? There is usually something there to do. If you don't want to pay for something you could go to one of the parks. The problem is due to lack of funding a lot of this stuff is being neglected. The parks aren't being as maintained as they could be. The prices of movies and bowling are high and going to catch something at the Gallow Center can be just as expensive if not more so! This simply can not do. There is only one way it can be fixed.


When I was a kid it was all about playing outside. Kick ball, baseball, or just plain playing in the dirt. I didn't really know much about movies and things of that nature. The best time I ever had was going to the pool or zoo. Now a days everything costs money and lots of it. We need to find a way to make it more affordable if people are going to come. We've already helped so many people including business a little more for entertainment can't hurt. Giving money to help make the parks a better, safer place would be a start. Since we've already worked on safety as a whole the neighborhoods being safer goes along way to making the parks safe. Giving some money to the business of entertainment so that they can lower their prices or even give a discounted rate night would also go along way to getting some entertainment into Modesto.


With better safer parks kids will want to get out and play more. Less time spent in front of the t.v. and more time out and interacting with other kids and having fun means a broader range of social skills that are crucial to gets as the grow up. They do better in school and even in society. Being able to communicate with your peers is learned by first playing with them when your a child. When people grow up knowing each other or being better able to socialize in general they are less likely to commit other crimes. With more money given to the movie theaters and to various other entertainment places through out Modesto they are more able to lower their prices making it more affordable for people to go. When a family can go together to see a play at the Gallow Center, or bowling with family then the family as a whole is better. The leisure day is saved! For now...

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Mission 6: Public transportation needs help!

* I haven’t been able to get the postcard thing to post. I will get it up a.s.a.p.


I have personally had to ride the bus for an extended period of time due to losing my car. It’s not pleasant at all, cramped and usually late. The buses run on an okay schedule but usually have issues with staying on time and that’s just getting to Modesto. Once you get to Modesto the routes are okay to see where you want to go, you can go online to get them but you never know if that bus will be late or not. Now that they are cutting money from the budget and shortening times it makes it even harder for college students to get the ride they need to get to school if they need to or home.


Using my unlimited resources I would once again help the people of Modesto by paying to have buses and pay for longer hours. The more buses we have to run the less chance of someone missing the buss and not being on time. Also with more money comes more capacity to pay for the drivers and even hire new ones so the buses can run later. That way kids who need to get to college late or come home late won’t have to worry about missing a bus or being there exactly on time because the next bus will be by shortly. The next step would be to create parking areas that are both secure and plentiful enough that people can park and ride utilizing the bus routes and not having to worry about whether their car will be stolen, broken into or having to pay extremely high parking fees. I would fix the bike routes and walking paths. Paying to have them maintained and the gaps fixed would go a long way to allowing those who want to bike an opportunity to do so. Working with the new budgets and other improvements that have already been made in Modesto and through the state we can better create these bike paths and make them more efficient.


More buses and better bike routes, more people are free to take the bus rather than use their car and feel safer doing so. With the bike routes repaired more people can bicycle without worrying about whether or not they are going to be run over by traffic that runs through the city. More people have the freedom to get to the places they need to go and the boost in the economy is directly impacted. With lower costs for the buses and more routes people aren’t worried about missing things and so they spend more time shopping and using the money they’ve saved to buy things they need or want.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Mission 5

The burst of the housing bubble and subsequent foreclosure crisis our country has seen over the last few years has caused many people to lose their homes, forcing those with even jobs to move in with family, hop from cheap motel room to motel room and even forced some to live on the streets. It is completely unacceptable that we have allowed one of the basic necessities of life, shelter, to become one of this biggest stresses in our society. On top of that the crisis has left a dearth of vacant homes, allowing the seedy underbelly of society, crime, to move in. Our government has already helped, with the people's tax money, the banks deal with the loss of value from real estate, yet the banks have done little to help the people! They are even making the market worse by continuing how they have been!

I, Adouchi, know just the way to handle this! My plan has three goals: keeping those at risk of losing their homes in their home, helping those who want to buy a home but are low income get into a home, and helping those who have lost their home into one they can afford. For my first goal, I would use my Gaze Of Justice to show those in charge of the banks that it is in their better interest as well as the public's, not to kick people out of their homes but to work with them to keep them there. My gaze would show them how they are glutting themselves of future profit by continuing to destabilize the market and making fewer eligible buyers (as those with foreclosures on record have to wait many years to get a loan again) to make them money on new loans.  My gaze would also show them that they have tightened restrictions on loans so much that now even with cheaper homes that are vastly more affordable, they are preventing many low-income people who would at these prices have mortgages lower than their rent from buying, which is preventing them from making money. For my third goal, since my Gaze of Justice is already changing the minds of bankers, how about some more government officials? Even with my gaze bankers are going to be wary of lending money out again to those who have already been foreclosed upon. I would use my gaze at the state level to allot funds for communities to buy up some of the vacant homes to be used for people who have been foreclosed on but want another shot at buying a house. The communities would rent these homes to those who have been foreclosed at rates similar to what the mortgage now (at the lower home prices) would be. Residents would be responsible for all upkeep unlike a typical rental, on the condition that after so much time of renting with on-time payments, they would then purchase the home with the government backing the loan for the same payment as their rent.

While my Gaze of Justice persuaded the bankers in terms they could appreciate, money, the effect is much broader than that. Citizens will rest easier and turn their attentions to more important things int he community without having to worry about if they are going to have a roof over their heads. Those unable to buy homes before in the inflated market will have a chance to become a permanent part of their community versus a temporary renter. This will keep and reoccupy homes, which keeps away crime. It is also known that owner-occupied properties are better taken care of, so it even has the possibility of making the neighborhoods even better than before the crisis started. Just imagine what people could do without that constant worry they now have.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Mission 4: Healthier Life, Healthier people!


I myself am overweight, sucks but yeah it is true! So what I try to do, successful or not, is walk. Walking helps the blood flow, it gets your metabolism going and helps you lose weight by killing calories. I also use a program on my pc that helps me watch my calorie intake and vitamins, water, and all the stuff I need to be healthy or get rid of so that I can be healthier. Believe it or not I also play the wii! Yep! If you look at the wii games, the sports ones in particular like boxing, bowling or any of the aerobic sports on the console you can work up a good sweat real quick!


So I saw fierce dreamer using her imaginative powers to scare the bejeezus out of the citizens and thought that maybe I should help her get things settled back down! After she woke them up to a hard dose of reality and what could happen if they were seriously obese and unhealthy I thought spending some money to help subsidize health programs and workout centers might be a good way to get people to go work out. Considering the cost is almost three to four hundred dollars a year for people I figured if I helped pay to keep the costs down even more than that it would be a great way to start getting people more active. The other hard part is time, a lot of people ‘don’t have time’ to do the things they want to do like exercise regularly and be healthy. I can’t change the day light hours but between helping schools become more organized and helpful, businesses working more and giving people more jobs, and even safer neighborhoods I think that we can find ways to give people more time. Maybe have twenty four hour gyms where someone can go anytime they want. Helping to pay and support those things would greatly help people become healthier. Another idea would be to help the government and local health care people crack down on the hospitals charging outrageous fees for things that aren’t needed to help get more money for their doctors and or advancements in medical technology. How about we pay that so they don’t have to… the more money they have the less they can charge and it makes it easier for everyone to pay for the healthcare they need.

Work, school, neighborhoods, and now medical care… the more we work the more the people will become better. Healthier people work harder, and are better all around. With medical care and healthier living now in place the obesity percent drops dramatically… with places open so people can go anytime the strain to get it done is less and more people eating healthier and able to see someone when they are sick helps to keep things better in balance. The future looks brighter every day!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Mission 3: If they can't do it, we have to!

Having been personally robbed and my possessions taken, some of which where very special to me, I know very well the dangers in a lack of security and vigilance. I refuse to let it happen to anyone else! To action!


I know for a fact that there is no neighborhood watch program here within the apartment complex that I live in. That being said we have one security guard in the evenings that patrols once every hour or so and goes between two or three different apartment complexes. That’s not enough! Installing cameras may help but then people feel like they are losing their privacy. There are plenty of ways that can be utilized to get people more aware and that is key. If you send out letters, fliers and go out and make friends with your neighbors you’re more likely to have an easier time protecting the neighborhood. Why is it that small, small towns have little crime rate? Because by the time the crime is committed seven people already know and they’ve told the entire town what you have done!


Using my gaze of justice to have criminals see the light is a trifle. But the real people that need to see the light are the people next door. How do I do that? I go over and knock, I introduce myself and build up a rapport. If you go over every once in a while or say hello the people start to recognize you and friendships develop and that is the best and quickest way to secure the neighborhood. Get the neighborhood together to meet one another and stop being so scared of the guy next door. Who knows you may just find a friend for life!

As for the fire department and fires, a good way to take care of that is to train volunteers in the neighborhoods. If the fire department can’t get here fast enough then the volunteers who know how to do the job, combined with the new friendships made throughout the neighborhood should be enough to get things together. If you want something done sometimes you simply have to do it yourself!


Getting the community together in my neighborhood was just the start. Good caring and hard work developed a sense of kinship that started to filter through the entire populace. As more people got to know other people and friendliness spread the criminals found it harder and harder to do their work because people would always tell. Fear melted away to kind hearted truth and the world slowly became safe… one day at a time.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Mission 2: Businesses are being crippled lets help!

I went to yet another friend’s place of work yesterday. His mother is a manager at the store. I asked them how things were going in the job market and here’s what she had to say.


Thanks to the lack of jobs for people with a higher level of education, people with masters degrees are applying for jobs at Borders! This serious lack of jobs for those with higher levels of education has created a short fall that is trickling down into every place in society. If those with college degrees get the small jobs that are typically filled by those without degrees, it leaves a whole society of younger, less educated or even older folk who can’t get the education high and dry. This has to stop!


We made a start at this last time with the education system. If we can get the education system on track we can get the teachers back to teaching, which is a start in freeing up the jobs they took for those without degrees. The next step is to give the schools more money so they can help more students as well as create jobs for people helping those students. Having been in a community college and an active part of the school community, I know that there needs to be more of an emphasis on spending money in the classroom and not in administration. More money in the schools means students don’t have to pay as much, which means more students can afford to go to school. With a higher percentage of the population with college degrees as compared to our current paltry rates compared to the rest of the state, this should give corporations incentive combined with low real estate prices to expand here and create jobs. This will help to employ those just getting out of college as well as pull up those with degrees from jobs that are typically filled by those with less education.

A second step to the recovery process would be to give forgivable small business loans to those who have a proven and working business plan and application. For each full time long term position created and filled in their business, a small percentage of the loan will be forgiven. The more full-time positions they create and fill, the lower their balance will be on the loan, which will give a strong incentive to the business owner to create long-term, full-time positions over short-term, part-time ones. And see… I didn’t even have to become Adouchi for this one!


With schools now focused and working with their bigger budgets, more education given to the community. Large corporations will take notice and start creating much needed jobs for those in the area. Thanks to the incentive program more small business owners are working hard to also create jobs and give the community a hand. Thanks to the powers of my fellow super heroes the community fights together as one to help these companies thrive and grow. The employment problem begins to fade all together… the day is saved… For now.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Mission 1: Justice will be done!

For me the schools loosing teachers hit home a little harder than most. My wife is a CSU Stanislaus graduate student who was teaching young high school kids how to better speak in a speech class when the budget cuts to the schools eliminated her job. I decided to take a look deeper into what was going on.


I decided to take a look around and went to a local junior college and my friend told me that his music program that he was majoring in was being drastically cut and that he may have to wait. Another told me that her art program was going to be removed completely and that she would have to go to another school entirely or even another state for her degree! This simply won’t do! I have to find a way to help the people I care about succeed in their own goals! If it’s bad here at the junior college the children must be suffering an even greater injustice! That’s why I decided to take action… Adouchi the Shadow of Vengeance was going to get some action done… starting with our apathetic and corrupt government!


The shadows slipped around my form as I called them to become Adouchi and before long I was heading to the California capital building. Slipping inside unnoticed and quietly, it wouldn’t take long before I was in for a fight. The legislators were tough and unrelenting but after my gaze of justice they saw the error of their ways and started to make a change pushing for bettering of the public school systems across the board from K-12, to the junior colleges and universities. Next it was the people of California itself. You can’t spend money without bringing it in and thanks to a good superhero named Corrupt Angel using her mind warp powers, the people started to understand that fact. Maybe now we can get things done!


With the corrupt politicians now working to help California’s youth and Corrupt Angel using her powers to get the people of California to understand, taxes were raised to produce more revenue for the government to use. Funding was quickly put back into the schools and even added more to help reverse the shortfalls that had started to happen all over! The day is saved…. for now.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

My Secret Identity

When I took on the gifts of Bast I became something different, it changed my life in a lot of ways and I work hard to make my new patron deity proud. But I can't do that all the time...

I go to school still work hard as Larry Browne Jr, the computer science major who's just trying to make a life for him and his family. I live in Turlock, CA and I go to school at CSU Stanislaus. I go to MJC to work with a club I founded and was president of for 2 years, and I live an every day average life. No one would suspect that by night I become the masked vengeance known as Adouchi, only my wife knows who I am and what I do.

How I became Adouchi: Shadow of Vengeance

It was an average day in an average life. I thought the day was going well me and my wife where doing just fine. We went out for dinner and were heading back to the car when a man came up to us demanding money. When we politely refused he pulled a gun. We tried to tell him that we didn't carry that kind of stuff on us but he wouldn't hear it. My wife was the first to get shot... then myself.

The whole world felt cold and as it seeped away I heard a voice in my head a voice asking me if I wanted to live to stop people like that from hurting others... it was Bast, the Egyptian goddess of cats birth and life. She offered to become one of her children in exchange I wouldn't hunt those who harmed others and defend the weak from the oppressors. I willingly accepted, and became Adouchi a shadow of vengeance. I was given the powers over shadow able to move through them at will. I became more agile, stronger and faster and more importantly I learned the Egyptian martial arts that would help me fight others. Lastly, I gained the power to judge another.. to look into their souls and judge their wrong doings and let them feel the anguish and pain they put on others. I would make them all pay for their wrong doings.

The last gift she gave me was my wife, Bast is a protector of women and as a gift to her new champion she gave her the strength to survive our ordeal. Now I go out searching the night for those who would prey on the weak to see that justice and judgment is rendered.