“Til death do us part” has new meaning with funeral home weddings.

funeral wedding

Wedding days are usually well planned events full of flowers, guests and celebration. People can spend years planning and saving for that big day. Expenses for even a modest wedding can put serious strain on a relationship and your bank balance. Finding the right dress, flowers, band and venue are important decisions for the bride and groom. Lately, weddings are being held in non-traditional locations and Brendan Spaar has heard of a location that is one to remember.

Most of us have been to weddings and agree that for the most part they’re pretty much the same. The bride looks lovely, the flowers are pretty, the groom looks nervous, and the guests can’t wait to celebrate at the reception. Imagine the look on the invited guests’ faces when they open their wedding invitation and read the location for the happy day is a funeral home! It definitely shoots this wedding to the top of the “must attend” list.

Starting your new life together where most lives end is becoming more popular. Funeral homes are often beautiful places with tasteful decor and that has a growing number of budget minded couples considering this as an option. Weddings are big business with costs easily $10,000 or more. Getting that special venue can be difficult and that’s where the funeral home has an edge.

Revenues have been declining at many funeral homes since the population is living longer. Many of these facilities have reception areas that could easily be used for other purposes. This opens up more choices for wedding parties as well as bringing in much needed extra revenue for the business. The cost of a funeral home wedding is often quite a bit less than other venues and will definitely be a memorable setting.

Brendan Spaar hasn’t heard of any funeral home weddings in Forsyth County, Georgia yet but it appears to be just a matter of time before the trend catches on there. So if wedding bells are in your future, you might want to consider adding funeral homes to your list of possible locations. And may you live happily ever after!

Brendan Spaar welcomes our robot overlords

PopeBot and the Gospel according to HitchBot

Brendan Spaar welcomes our robot overlordsBy now I am sure that you have read about the untimely demise of the Canadian research project known as HitchBot.  Brendan Spaar was following the robot’s journey across the United States of America and was sad to learn of its fate in Philadelphia earlier this month.

In case you were wondering if the City of Brotherly Love had something against robots, radio station 93.3 WMMR is here to set the record straight.  The radio station has created a robot pope named PopeBot in an effort to spread the gospel of robots to humans that may not understand them.  Residents of Philadelphia will be graced with its presence this week and should be able to have all of their non-working electronics healed by “His binaryness.”

While PopeBot looks a little like HitchBot had a baby with a laundry basket and pool noodle, this effort is picking up where the previous robot left off. You can follow PopeBot’s journey on Twitter and can catch him at landmarks like Charley’s Philly Cheese Steaks restaurant and local bars.

Source:  http://www.techinsider.io/there-is-a-pope-robot-in-philly-2015-8

Brendan Spaar has discovered lobster beer

Portland Brewery introduces Lobster Beer

There are two things that are usually nearby when Louisiana people get together. One of the items is seafood & the other is beer. It seems like almost every weekend there’s a festival or gathering at someone’s house. Good food, good times & good music are the secret ingredients that visitors remember when they’re back home.

If you ask someone how many ways there are to use the wonderful seafood that’s found throughout Louisiana, you’ll probably fall asleep before they finish telling you their list. You can find seafood in every way imaginable but so far it hadn’t been widely used as a flavoring for beer… until recently. It is hard to believe that someone beat the creative Cajuns to making a beer with a seafood component but a brewery in Maine has done just that.

When you think of Maine the picture in your head is of delicious lobsters with a side of melted butter. It makes your mouth water just to think of it. While lobster should be the state food of Maine, they also have quite a few good breweries. What could be more perfect than a combination of both?

Thanks to some creative folks at Portland’s Oxbow Brewing Company you can now have your lobster & drink it too. They have come up with a beer made from live lobsters & sea salt. It’s a limited edition brew available at their taproom. According to Brewmaster Tim Adams the lobsters were placed in a mesh bag and suspended in a kettle full of boiling wort during the brewing process.

Before you shake your head & moan about the waste of lobsters, there is good news. The lobster meat that was left when the process was over got eaten. There’s no mention of how the lobster tasted after being “brewed” but the beer is reported to have a slight briny sweetness from the lobster & salt.

It’s clear that Louisiana now has a challenge- to use some of the wide variety of seafood & seasonings to brew a beer that will top the “Saison Dell’Aragosta” lobster beer from Maine. It’ll be interesting to see if there will be a Louisiana crawfish or alligator beer to rival Maine’s claim to fame.

After hearing about this latest “creative” flavoring, Brendan Spaar decided to see what other things have been used to give a new taste to an old beverage. It’s hard to believe that someone would actually drink some of these on the list.

Funky Buddha’s Maple Bacon Coffe Porter

Tom Seefurth’s Mamma Mia Pizza Beer

Tex Mex Siesta Prickly Pear Lager

Convict Hill Oatmeal Stout

Wynkoop Brewing Company’s Rocky Mountain Oyster Stout

When you’re planning your next party you might want to add one of these to your list. You’ll definitely get some conversations started & might find a new favorite.

Toys For Big Boys- A Car That Will Transform You!

There are thousands of guys out there that really love to tinker with cars. On weekends you can find them with their heads under the hood or lying underneath surrounded by tools. It’s a real obsession to turn their everyday set of wheels into a super car destined to take over the highway.That may explain why the audience at any of the Transformers movies is mostly male, young and old.

Well, if you’ve ever dreamed of “transforming” your family car into a superhero’s dream come true, you might want to check out the work that Kenji Ishida of Brave Robotics has been doing. He too has had this dream since he was a teenager but now is making it come true. He’s helped create a real working prototype called Project J-Diete and it’s a collaboration between Brave Robotics and Asratec.

His robot is about 3 1/2 feet tall so it’s a bit smaller than the Optimus Prime we remember from the movies. In the robot mode, it can walk about 20mph which is slower than what we see in the movies but it’s still impressive. Once it” transforms” into a car, it picks up speed to about 40mph. Perfect for that morning commute or quick trip to Wal-mart.

The new “Transformer” will be 4 times larger (11ft tall) and transform into ready to drive in about 10 seconds.You’ll be able to drive it from inside or remotely. It should have room for 2 passengers. Can you imagine the look on the face of your date if you showed up in this?

You have time to start saving up for your new “toy”. They hope to have a final version ready by 2017. I bet you can guess what’ll be on my Christmas list!

This gives new meaning to the phrase “my computer died”.

man shoots computer with a shotgun

Anyone that’s used a computer regularly has probably experienced a frustrating “oh no” moment when the computer decides to slow down, lose your data or just generally make life a lot more stressful than you’d like. While we’d all love to do something destructive to it so we’d feel better, few of us ever do. The exception to this is a man from Colorado Springs, CO named Lucas Hinch. He decided to put the computer and himself out of it’s misery.

It seems that for months Lucas Hinch had been fighting with issues with his computer. After taking it for as long as he could, Hinch took the computer into an alley and fired 8 shots from his handgun into the computer. While he might have felt better after doing this, he has now been cited by police for discharging a firearm within city limits.

It seems like it could be considered premeditated. Definitely sounds like a crime of passion. Brendan Spaar has gotten frustrated with computers in the past but never to that extent. Maybe Hinch thought he was dealing with “Hal” from 2001 Space Odyssey. Whatever the reason, Hinch will face a judge to explain his actions. Let’s hope the judge has experienced similar computer issues and will be sympathetic.

Super Mario Goes To A New Level- Smartphone Games


Brendan Spaar remembers when he got his first Nintendo system and games. It was 2nd grade and after saving up all his birthday and Christmas money he was able to buy a tv and Nintendo. The video gamer was born and hasn’t looked back since. Now the Super Mario that we all know is going high tech.

Soon you’ll be able to play the games you love while you’re on the move. No more being tied to a console device. Nintendo just announced that it is branching out into the smartphone games market. Investors have been urging Nintendo to take the leap to the next level after losing customers to other smartphone gaming app makers and console rivals like PlayStation (Sony Corp) and Xbox ( Microsoft Corp).

It appears Nintendo listened and is teaming up with online gaming firm DeNA Co Ltd to develop and operate gaming apps. As an added bonus, later this year they will roll out an online membership service accessible on mobile devices as well as Nintendo’s Wii U console and the portable 3DS.

Satoru Iwata, Nintendo’s president, believes the games made with DeNA will boost demand for its platforms by exposing more consumers to Nintendo games and driving them to buy Nintendo hardware. But if you love Nintendo’s console games, should you worry about the move to mobile gaming? It might be tempting to focus on making money from mobile games and continue funding that section of the business rather than invest the money into the production of console games.

Going mobile might be a good move for Nintendo because it will broaden their customer base. There will be users of the mobile games that wouldn’t invest in a standard console and the console fans will always want the latest, greatest so it might appeal to them as well. Only time will tell if this is the bridge that Nintendo needs. Brendan Spaar will definitely be watching to see how this plays out.

We take technology for granted but did you know…

Many of us grew up as computer technology was evolving. Today we take so much of modern conveniences for granted. Brendan Spaar has shared some technology trivia to remind us that it is indeed amazing. See how many of these tech trivia bits you knew. If you had bought the computing power that’s inside an iPhone 5s back in the 1990s, it would have cost you $3.56 million. Bet that $500 phone doesn’t sound quite as expensive now, does it? There was more processing power in a TI-83 calculator than there was in the computer used to land Apollo 11 on the moon. Wonder how the astronauts would have felt if they knew that back then. In the early 1990s, there were about 1 million mobile phones in use worldwide. There are over 5 billion in use today. No wonder it’s hard to make a call sometimes. There’s about 1.3 trillion gigabytes of data on the internet. Imagine 75 billion 16GB iPads fully loaded and that’s what the data would look like stored. If you stacked them up, it would reach 339 miles high. That would make Apple very happy to see. There will be more information stored as data in the next 2 days than was created in recorded history up to 2003. Either we have more to say or people need to start living life. There is 100 hours of video uploaded to Youtube every minute. That equals 16 years of recorded history a day. Maybe you should think twice about posting that crazy cat video. Wikipedia was started in 2001. If you could print all the information it has collected, without images it would take 2953 volumes to hold it all. The Encyclopaedia Britannica was begun in 1768 and has 32 volumes. It’s a lot easier to access the info online than to store heavy volumes of the same information. So the next time you use your cellphone, computer or other digital age device, remember that one day you might be a part of tech trivia too.

It’s official, “Seinfeld” did more than drive viewers crazy.

Seinfeld is a show about nothing and enjoyed by Brendan Spaar

Do you remember watching episodes of the tv show “Seinfeld” and thinking that there was something seriously wrong with some of the characters? Well, Brendan Spaar is not the only one and now “Seinfeld” has moved from being entertainment to being educational.

The show had a cult following for the zany comedy it offered but a psychiatry professor is using it for much more than that. Medical students at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School are learning about psychiatric disorders through Dr. Anthony Tobia’s “Psy-feld” teaching tool. He has created a database of teaching points from all the show’s episodes. Dr. Tobia has also written an academic paper that analyzes five of Elaine’s boyfriends from the show to explain delusional disorder.

Each character is analyzed and their “quirks” used as examples of certain personality disorders. Fans of the show are all too familiar with Jerry’s obsessive compulsive traits, Kramer’s schizoid traits, Elaine’s inability to forge meaningful relationships and George being egocentric. The most disturbing character of all is Newman. Dr Tobia has diagnosed Newman as “Very sick.”

Third- and fourth-year medical students are assigned to watch two episodes a week and then get together to discuss the psychopathology found in each show. Third-year student Marlene Wang said that the exercise leads to having more practical and relatable examples than a textbook.

So be careful what shows you watch. It might tell more about you than you realize.

When you work are you ever really “off the clock”?

The image depicts that Brendan Spaar is a working guy
How many times have you been relaxing in your free time only to be hit with an email from work? With the advancements in technology the days of working 9-5 seem to be a thing of the past. It used to be that once you left work, you left work. Now it can follow you and pop up with the push of a button or click of a mouse.

That may be about to change in Germany. That country’s Labor Minister is looking into the possibility of “anti-stress” regulations. German employees could soon have legal protection preventing them from having to deal with work-related phone calls and emails after hours and on weekends.

Government officials are collecting data in preparation to draft a proposal for lawmakers next year. Labor Minister Andrea Nahles feels “there is a connection between permanent availability and psychological diseases.” Germany’s economy seems to support the premise that happy workers are productive workers. Every worker in Germany gets at least four weeks of paid vacation. Most employees have a 35 hour work week and women are allowed 14 weeks of paid maternity leave.

Some German companies have already taken voluntary measures to reduce after hours work. Volkswagen has restricted after-work email for some employees who have been issued company-owned smartphones. For workers under wage agreements, the company’s email server is programmed to stop delivering messages between 6:15 p.m. and 7 a.m. the following morning. Weekends are also off-limits. “Supervisors and employees regard the regulation as a signal to respect recreation times and to interrupt after-work hours only in emergencies,” said Volkswagen spokesman Markus Schlesag.

Brendan Spaar found that there is a cost to these “perks”. However, Germany’s DGB union leader believes “We clearly have a higher work protection standards compared to the United States, but in regard to competitiveness we are at least on a face-to-face level with the Americans. “Good and healthy work that can be maintained for a long time is a competitive advantage.”

I doubt we see changes like this in the US anytime soon. We operate in an immediate response society. Everything has to be fast- fast food, tv on demand & being in touch 24/7.

Nintendo & Mario watch you sleep

Nintendo is most commonly known as the maker of video game systems and games that excite and challenge people of all ages. Brendan Spaar got his first Nintendo system when he was in 2nd grade. It is still in his collection along with the Super Nintendo, Nintendo64, Game Boy and Wii. Most of the games were designed to test skill, reflexes and just plain stamina because playing could go on for hours non-stop.

Along came the Wii and a slight shift in gaming to a more interactive way of playing. No longer were the video game systems looked at as something strictly for kids. The days of being confined to a chair in front of a screen were coming to an end. Even senior citizens could be found using Wii Fit to get moving.

It seems that Nintendo is continuing to push from the gaming area of technology and into the possibly larger health/living area. The newest offerings from the gaming giant will be in the QOL (quality of life) health focused devices. The first one we’ll be seeing is a bedside sensor designed to track sleep, send that info into the cloud and give suggestions for getting more rest.

Nintendo’s president wants to redefine the company’s idea of entertainment. The company was founded in 1889 to make Japanese playing cards so the emphasis has always been on entertainment. It’ll be interesting to see if this new venture proves to be successful. It’s a gamble to go in a new direction but Brendan Spaar hopes they won’t leave the gaming sector in a deep sleep while they pursue this new venture.