Everything you need to know about computers

By J.B. Blocker
Viewpoint

Help me! I’ve got a virus!
I called my daughter. I called my editor. I called a geek friend. Check that, I called several.
They had their own viruses. What else did we have in common? We all use Facebook, hotmail, and have some sort of anti-virus already installed.
I tried everything over hours of following my daughter’s instructions and then hours more with my geek.
My laptop eventually wouldn’t boot up because my anti-virus had a virus!

Redneck
at the Chamber

I go to the Wednesday morning Links breakfast for the McKinney Chamber at Saltgrass on US 75 and El dorado. One of the regular 100-plus friendly faces is Tracy Holz.
That morning, Tracy talked about his $97 computer repair service.
I picked up his card and read his Redneck Glossary. Here it is with his permission.
Reboot – What you do when yer done scratchin’ yer feet.
Server – The feller who doles out the beans.
Hardware – Nuts, bolts, nails, and so on.
Spread sheet – One way of fertilizin’ a field.
Cell Phone – What you use to make yer one call from jail.

After reading that, I felt dumber! That’s when I realized that I really wish I could trust someone with my brain.
My whole writer’s life revolves around my computer. I have wasted hours ad in finitum over a slow computer and more hours waiting for a link.

Referral

Andrew Shull is a State Farm agent who is a regular at the Links meetings.
I asked him for a reference. “I’ve known Tracy for about 4 and a half years. He has helped me set up computers and helped me maintain them in my office and at my home. He is always trying to find a way to give you the most for your money.”
Ian Buchanan is a finance whiz for Interfacefinancial.com. He is also an Ambassador for the McKinney Chamber.
“Tracy is a great resource. He knows his stuff, is very honest, and customer focused.”
Good enough!
I dropped my brain off at his 4550 Eldorado office and got a receipt from his sister Elizabeth who keeps Tracy in line while he keeps us on line.
A few hours later, they called! They had cleaned and removed about a gazillion viruses. They added a free anti-spyware, anti -Trojan, scanner and cleaner. They told all the software that was booting up every time I turned to computer on to wait until I ask for them.
And as a bonus, Tracy added a replacement 256 memory card to replace my faulty one for free!
As it turns out, High Tech Redneck doesn’t try to sell you new computers, and they don’t sell off repaired trade-ins. They did have a spare part that they just gave me. I like that.

Thank You
This is my thank you letter to Tracy and my fellow Chamber members. Tracy is as advertized. A friendly, reliable, and courteous businessman who knows his stuff so I don’t have to. All for $97!
From what I understand, Tracy will make home visits to help set up computers, Internet connections or to repair for a $97 house call. If you have to have hours of systems checks and downloads you should drop it off or have it picked up to save charges for waiting.
I do know this. Tracy will figure out the way to save you the most time and money. Then you’ll be writing one of these letters.

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Leadership McKinney Class of 2011

By GINNY MULLIS
McKinney Chamber
GMullis@mckinneychamber.com

The Leadership McKinney Class of 2011 has been selected. The 26 class members were presented by sponsor Dean Castillo, First United Bank & Trust, at a reception at The Body Shop. The class was welcomed by program alums along with Chamber and City leaders.
Offering a challenging educational experience, Leadership McKinney has entered its 23rd year. This community leadership development program through the McKinney Chamber of Commerce provides McKinney with a diverse group of individuals, representing all sectors of the community, who are committed to assuming a greater responsibility for the future of McKinney through leadership.
The class members began their journey with an overnight retreat and will continue to meet once a month through May 2011 to:
*Develop a climate of teamwork, working side by side during McKinney Make a Difference Day;
*Participate in open dialogue with community leaders;
*Create a sustainable community class project;
*Develop leadership skills with futurist Carolyn Corbin, President of the Center for the 21st Century.

CLASS OF 2011:

Courtney Brecheen, The University of Texas at Dallas
James Bresnahan, JB Wealth Management
Mary Mac Brock, McKinney Chamber
Dan Bruns, Merrill Lynch
Todd Bulot, Rushmore Investment Adv
Rock Carpenter, Living Hope Church
Mary Clark, MISD
Linda Fogg, MISD
Kevin Gandy, View Point Bank
Connie Gibson, MCDC
Mary Jane Grubb, City of McKinney
Kristen Hendrix, Holy Family School
Christine Hockin-Boyd, Community Lifeline Center
Sheila Johnson, Johnson Insurance & Financial
Edward LaMonica, RMCN Credit Services
Jackie Langford, Collin College
Melissa Matlock, Edward Jones
Roslyn Miller, McKinney Housing Authority
Dawn Mitchell, Torchmark
Mark Moyle, City of McKinney
Tori Owens, Medical Center of McKinney
James Penny, Compound Profit Corp.
Greg Sims, MEDC
Scott Smith, Stonebridge Ranch & Associates
Jonathan Sparling, Independent Bank
Brandi Spurgin, Junior League of Plano

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McKinney EDC leader strong role model

By J.B. BLOCKER
VIEWPOINT

One brick at a time. As I listened to the NFL Hall of Famer’s personal story, I was drawn in to a common theme in #80’s life forces. Jerry lives with a huge fear. The fear of failure has driven him all his life. But that failure he runs from is more “The Fear of Letting Others Down.”
I had recently heard another personal story with many similarities to Rice’s.

David Buy’s A Chevy

Young David showed up for his first job in the summer of ’74. The Arlington Municipal Golf Course has a lot of trees. The lanky 15-year-old had nothing much on his mind except high school football and buying a car.
David said, “When I met my supervisor, he introduced me to my new friend, a Yazoo push lawnmower. He took me to a tree and showed me how they expected the mowing around the trees to be done. All right, what do I do now? ‘You see all these trees around the golf course? Mow around every one of them!”
David said, “OK. After I do that, what next?”
“Start over and mow them all again.”
For the next three summers, David pushed his Yazoo around the landscapes of Arlington’s public golf course. He was eventually paid $2.30 per hour for pushing that blade chopper around in the blazing heat of summer.
“I bought my first car from my big brother John for $2000 (Not a real bargain). It was a ’66 Chevy Caprice with a big old UT sticker on the rear window,” David said. “My brother bought it from my father the Arlington City Manager who had bought it from an Arlington icon, Tom Vandergriff.”
You might remember that the former Arlington Mayor and Tarrant County Judge was a key player in bringing the Texas Rangers baseball team to Arlington among other significant additions to the Arlington economy.
The original sticker price would have been about $4,000 and you can buy a nice one now for around $20,000.
Few young people will stick with a job like that for three years. But all those hours and miles of pushing a Yazoo around manicured lawns has left its mark in several ways. “One of my hobbies is landscaping.”

Pass the bricks Dave
It is me, J.B. again. … That reminds me when I helped a friend build a brick fence one weekend. I didn’t like it! I was his helper. That requires loading up bricks in a wheel barrow, bringing it around to the work area, and then playing catch and toss all day long.
My hands were like mush even beneath leather gloves, my whole body ached, and the summer sun was relentless. I broke enough bricks to not be asked back!
Around the time Jerry Rice was developing his uncanny ability to catch anything by working for his father as a brick layers assistant, David was doing the same thing every summer for five years as he saved for his college needs.
I tried to picture him out side of his current position as President of the McKinney Economic Development Corporation, where his team has been bringing businesses to life in McKinney. David Pitstick still plays pick up basketball games and practices yoga to relieve the stress of driving a desk.
“I feel healthier than ever. Yoga makes you feel younger and it seems to counteract the effects of sitting for long hours with the necessary desk work.”
Through his life in Texas, he has lived in Lubbock, Arlington, Allen, and McKinney. Each community has more that quadrupled while someone in his family helped lead the way.
First, his demanding and hugely respected father Bill Pitstick, and onward with each of the three Pitstick boys John, David, and Jim who are tied to some community leadership roles around DFW. Mother and sister are school teachers.
So, what does that say about a pale, lanky, blue-eyed son of a career city manager?
Three years of mowing around the same trees over and over and then five years of pitching bricks in 100-plus temperatures?
Commitment and Determination!
Pitstick said: “In 1980, we had more than 60 days of 100-plus with one day that even reached 113. I worked every one of those days. For a college student to make $9 an hour back then was big money!”
“In my family, we were treated like an adult at a young age. We all had our chores to do on Saturdays. We didn’t have to pay for clothes or school expenses, but any extra money had to be earned. I never wanted to disappoint my parents so I always did the best I could, and when I found something I could do, I stuck with it!
“My father left home when he was 16 and never returned. Each of us was told we could remain at home while we attended school, but when we moved away, we could not move back! He wasn’t kidding! When I had the opportunity to work in Arlington later, I asked if I could move in to their big house. Dad reminded me of the move out rule, and I had to get my own place. When rules were set, we learned to follow them.”

Following A Path
While he was working on his degrees in Business and Finance at the University of Texas, David picked up work with the City of Austin Water Dept. and with Travis County, where he cleaned the trucks and cars.
“I acted as a runner for an Austin developer and then for a development consultant. One day, my boss gave me a bonus check. I didn’t expect it to be very much and was shocked when it was $500! It was basically for being reliable and doing a good job. I can’t tell you how much that gesture motivated me!”
Over the years, David Pitstick kept finding jobs that were community related. Some jobs were long and hard. Not what you would expect if you meet the polished professional. Each job built character, experience, and exposure.
Like Jerry Rice, David built his career and reputation brick by brick, and years later you can see a correlation between taking on responsibility at a young age and life’s later successes.
You can read his professional bio at McKinneyEDC.com.
Pass the bricks.
(After you read this, log on to nfl.com and hear what a legend has to say about motivation.) – J.B.

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