American Red Cross, Southern Missouri Region

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The Red Cross is not a firm but it is an organization. A well-known group of folks who assist others in many ways. Here are some links you can follow if you want to learn about this organization that has and will continue to render assistance to people in need.

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American Red Cross, Southern Missouri Region

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National American Red Cross

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Greater Ozarks Chapter   1545 N West Bypass   Springfield , MO 65803      Phone: 417-832-9500

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If you want to donate funds to a worthy organization that treats that money with respect and uses it within your community constantly, contact information is at their Web site.

One of the many tasks the local Red Cross performs is to rush to assist local residents who have been forced out of their home, apartment, trailer, whatever due to fire or weather damage or whatever makes you or your neighbors or the folks across town, outlaying towns, in the rural areas… everywhere… unexpectedly homeless and with, possibly, the only thing you now own the clothes you are wearing.

Many of the people working within Red Cross are volunteers who receive recognition for their efforts and, in a few cases, reimbursement for their own money spent to get the job done.

The Red Cross does need paid personnel to function but as I have seen first-hand none of the employees are living high-on-the-hog.

The Red Cross does not exist to make a few higher-ups wealthy.

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Follow the link below to view how the Better Business Bureau rated the Red cross very highly using multiple criteria:

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BBB Wise Giving Alliance

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Charity Navigator is extremely strict when evaluating charitable organizations. Follow the link below and view the entire extensive review that should ease any possible doubts that your donation to assist your friends, neighbors and anybody else around you heeding help is being squandered, wasted to keep a few big-wigs living a high-falutin’ lifestyle.

 

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Charity Navigator   American Red Cross

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Program Expenses    (Percent of the charity’s budget spent on the programs and services it delivers) 90.7%

That 90.7% figure is outstanding.  It takes equipment and building and communication equipment and so many other tools to come to the assistance of those needing help.

The Charity Navigator site is making the creation of this blog entry semi-easy.  The following is from their Web site:

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Mission

Since its founding in 1881 by visionary leader Clara Barton, the American Red Cross has been the nation’s premier emergency response organization. As part of a worldwide movement that offers neutral humanitarian care to the victims of war, the American Red Cross distinguishes itself by also aiding victims of devastating natural disasters. Over the years, the organization has expanded its services, always with the aim of preventing and relieving suffering. Today, in addition to domestic disaster relief, the American Red Cross offers compassionate services in five other areas: community services that help the needy; support and comfort for military members and their families; the collection, processing and distribution of lifesaving blood and blood products; educational programs that promote health and safety; and international relief and development programs.

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The local chapter of the Red Cross that assists this section of Missouri is a part of the much larger Red Cross that operates across the entire world.  It is a huge organization helping so very many people in so very many ways.

The last time I checked you can donate to the local Red Cross and request that those funds be used in the local chapter’s operating area only. When I contributed the were horrible tragedies affecting millions of people on the other side of the planet so I told them to use the funds where they were most needed.

It is your choice but be proud of your contributing to the good of humanity with whatever method you opt for;  local assistance or wherever people are suffering as determined by the full-time experts who keep the Red Cross operating so effectively year after year.

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Your local Red Cross has a nifty FaceBook page that is fun and informative:

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American Red Cross, Southern Missouri Region

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Here is a statement from the linked-to FaceBook page:

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About
The Southern Missouri Region serves with volunteers in 40 counties and offices in Cape Girardeau, Joplin, Lebanon, Nevada, Springfield, and West Plains. This page is administered by a team of volunteers from across the region.
Mission
The American Red Cross prevents and alleviates human suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors.
Company Overview
While our Disaster Volunteers are likely to go anywhere in America a major disaster strikes, our Volunteers routinely serve the following Southern Missouri counties: Barry, Barton, Bollinger, Butler, Cape Girardeau, Carter, Cedar, Christian, Dade, Dallas, Douglas, Dunklin, Greene, Hickory, Howell, Jasper, Laclede, Lawrence, McDonald, Mississippi, New Madrid, Newton, Oregon, Ozark, Pemiscot, Perry, Polk, Reynolds, Ripley, Scott, St. Clair, Stoddard, Shannon, Stone, Taney, Texas, Vernon, Wayne, Webster, and Wright.

Offices are located in Cape Girardeau, Joplin, Lebanon, Nevada, Springfield, and West Plains. Every office holds a monthly open house – call for details.

Toll Free: 1-866-206-0256

eMail: info@redcross-ozarks.org

Our volunteers help send emergency communications for military families every day – 24/7.

Our volunteers answer the call to service 24/7/365 whenever disaster strikes.

We most frequently respond to residential fires at a moment’s notice to provide comfort (blankets and teddy bears) and assistance (money for lodging and other items as needed).

Our volunteers make free disaster preparedness and fire safety presentations. Call to schedule a presentation for your group.

Your donations of time and money make this possible.

Mailing Address:
1545 N West ByPass
Springfield, MO 65803

Thank you for supporting your Red Cross!

General Information
Our volunteers answer our phones 24/7. If you need immediate assistance due to a fire or other natural disaster, or if you need immediate assistance from our Service to the Armed Forces Program (Emergency Communications, etc…) then please call (toll free): 866.206.0256

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Tubby’s Diner Springfield Missouri

Tubbys Diner

Okay, the cartoon above exaggerates the portion size a little bit but the breakfast I ate there a few days ago actually filled the near-bottomless pit that is my tummy.

Yes… Tubby’s filled my tummy.  That is quite an achievement!!!

Here is the breakfast menu:

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Tubby's Menu.

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I ordered the Tubby’s BIG Lumberjack Breakfast.  I love bacon… YAY BACON!!! But as for slabs of ham… that’s okay but I like biscuits and gravy better and my lovely waitress said that substituting biscuits and gravy was fine.

I ordered the eggs over medium to ensure the whites were cooked and asked that the yolk remain mobile so I could sop it up with the toast and the hash browns.

Several types of bread to convert to toast are available.  I chose the sourdough… yummy!!

The meal was prepared quickly and three plates full of food were placed in front of me.  The bacon was the thick, meaty type I prefer over the super-thin barely-there bacon so many other places toss at you.

The sausage was an irregular-shaped patty suggesting that non-frozen formed-on-the-spot ground pork was used.  Most places use that factory-formed frozen stuff that reveals its origin by its perfect round shape and flatness on both sides.  The taste of my sausage at Tubby’s was a bit spicier than the frozen stuff thus, in my opinion, more flavorful along with being fresher.

Hooray for proper egg cooking!!!  My three fried eggs were perfect!!!  The yolk swam across the plate to caress the toast chunks and embraced the hash browns.  And none of that hard stuff that often appears at the edge of the eggs.

Two big pancakes had their own plate and they almost covered the plate.  Crisp on the outside yet soft inside.  I wish I could cook pancakes and eggs like Tubby’s chef can cook.  Maybe it requires a restaurant-type grille to cook a superior breakfast.

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Hey!!!!!!!!!!  That was a great breakfast and the folks working there are super friendly and that is why I included them on this blog.  I should tell you where to find Tubbys!!!!

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On historic Route 66 in the western half of Springfield, Missouri…  2204 West College Street  (417) 501-9633

Open 7 days a week… that is every day!!!  From 7 am to 8 pm.

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Tubby’s Diner has a Face Book page showing pictures of the place, their menu and some of the folks who eat there. Even Santa Claus dropped in!!!

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Tubby’s Diner Face Book

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Look what I just found on their Face Book page:

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Springfield MO area peeps… please remember & help spread the word that we are serving a FREE Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow at Tubby’s Diner, 11am – 5pm… or until we run out of the 22 turkeys they cooked today Suggested donation of $2.99, but no one “has to” pay. Please share this especially with people you know who may be elderly, single parents, struggling financially, don’t have family, etc. All staff will be volunteering their time to serve our customers, and we wish everyone a safe and Happy Thanksgiving! Tubby’s is located at 2204 W College ~ 1/2 mi west of Kansas Expressway, on the south side of the road.

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I added the bold to their message above.  Dagnabbit!!!! I ate at home, alone, eating my lousy cooking when I could have had real food and good company.  If I had known about that Thanksgiving affair I would have been there.  I am not broke yet… though the future is uncertain for us old unemployed folks who are falling apart physically… but I would have gladly paid for myself and another person there just for well-cooked vittles and good company.

Tubby’s is not a corporate-owned chain restaurant.  It is owned and operated by real people!!!  Regular folks like you and I and the vast majority of folks around these parts!!!

Tubby’s has a lot of room inside so if you have a church group that gets together for an after-church meal consider visiting Tubbys.  The back room holds 40 people and the front dining area holds 30… hmmmmm… by golly, that means 70 folks could gather for a darn good meal.

Of course, if other folks are already present and eating there may not be a place for some of you to sit!!!

So… I am just guessing but I bet 40 folks could pile in and start enjoying themselves with no worries about having a seat.

Next time I eat at Tubby’s Diner I will order a different item and will add it to this blog.  Maybe on this page or maybe a separate page just for that new review.  Until then… give Tubby’s a try and enjoy the food and the nice folks working there!!!

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HEY!!!!!!!!!!!  I almost forgot to mention… Tubby’s has free Wi-Fi so you can go on the Web, do the e-mail thing and those other things you folks can do with those nifty portable electronic brain computer things!!!

That’s mighty handy for folks who want to eat a meal and still be able to get work stuff done.

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Dan Waisner State Farm Insurance Agent Springfield, Missouri

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717 W Battlefield Street    Springfield, MO 65807      (417) 887-6990

(the sloping entrance ramp starts on the right behind the stone wall)

Office Hours:  

Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 8:00am to 5:00pm   Tuesday 8:00am to 7:00pm

Waisner map

The Waisner Agency is on the north side of Battlefield Road,  a short ways west of Campbell Avenue and a few blocks east of Kansas Expressway.

A center turn lane on Battlefield Street eases the entering or departing from the office.

A handy ramp leading to the front door allows you to bypass the steps if you are in a wheelchair or akin to me… legs and feet that do not function as well as in my youth when I was an Adonis-like figure, profoundly handsome and a delight for the lasses of the land.

Nowadays I function much better as a door stop but the folks at Waisner Agency treat this Old Coot well.

And the coffee is good and they have a handy cup to use and it’s… FREE!!!!

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There’s one of those fancy store-bought signs out by the street to assist you in finding the office.

Hey!!!  I can make a clickable link to the Web site listed on the sign. That is just so nifty!!!  It’s the bee’s knees!!!

Dan Waisner Insurance Agency

I took most of the pictures on this blog entry using the wondrous digital camera thing.

Even a klutz such as I can take a decent picture then use free software found on the Web to improve the picture, if needed.

Cropping and brightening and a bunch of other things that can be done.

Using the built-in flash I even took some decent pics inside the office.

An Old Coot such as I delights in comfortable seating and inside the Jim Unit’s office we can see two padded comfortable chairs calling out for you to sit upon:

Jim office empty chairs

Oh… the “Jim Unit.”  That’s one of my terms used for younger folks who have earned my respect. The Jim Unit is Mr. Jim Curl who is the insurance professional I most often interact with at this agency.

We first conducted business in 2008 when I emigrated from Nebraska and, by default, immigrated to Missouri.  I interacted with a few of the local State Farm agencies looking for the ONE to become involved with and selected the one Mr. Curl was working at.

He excelled in customer interaction and service/product knowledge areas. The other agents in the Waisner agency are also very nice and pleasant to interact with so I have enjoyed doing business with the Jim Unit along with a minor amount of good-natured harassment this Old Coot tosses at others…but saved for when there was a lull in the office action.

Mr. Curl is all-business and will not make a customer wait because some long-winded Old Coot such as I is having his fun. I gotta’ respect the young feller’ for that!!!

So, you may be wondering who the Jim “Unit” Curl entity is. If you have young children present you may want to cover their eyes because……

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Jim solo front office

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Eeeeeeeeeek!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yes. That is the fellow.  The Jim Unit.  However, he is a rather husky fellow reminiscent of a football lineman so I am always well-behaved!!!

Not that Mr. Curl is malevolent. Nope.  I would want him on my side if any BIG guys picked on my aged, withered body.

The boss is in the other room.  As is typical he named the State Farm Agency he owns and operates using his own name.

That makes sense to me.

Hey, look!!!!  It’s the boss!!!!

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There he is… Mr. Dan Waisner.  He is a great guy to talk with, also.  He, too, looks akin to a front line football player.  At least you can feel safe here with all these BIG husky guys to keep the peace!!!!

Of course… I have never heard of a non-peaceful insurance office but I AM trying to make this blog entry interesting!!

Here is the newest addition to the Dan Waisner team… a fellow I call Tyler Wilson and I refer to the fellow as that because it is his name!!!

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There’s the boss on the left, the awesome Dan Waisner.  Tyler is on the right and to the left, out of view,  in his office,  is the Jim Unit assisting one of the firm’s loyal customers.

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The two pictures above were taken at the end of September 2013.  Halloween is a month and a few days away and my mind reflects upon the Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow fame.

None of that around here but I did find a body-less head that belongs to the Dan Waisner fellow!!!

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There it is!!!!!  I told you I found a head without a body but there isn’t a horse anywhere around so we should all be safe!!

Tyler is at the front desk closest to the door.  He is the newest addition to the team… making three BIG guys present to ensure that if challenged by another insurance agency to a rugby or football game they will likely walk away the winner!!!

But, when it comes to handling insurance and dealing with customers… they are gentle giants!!!

 

Poking around the office I found a surprise out back…

FOOD!!!!!

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garden zuchini

Tomatoes and zucchini. healthy tasty vittles ’round these here parts, y’all.

And inside I saw some more vittles. Not as healthy but still yummy!!!

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No wonder the crew was smiling in their picture… they had yummy stuff waiting for them in the break room!!!

Headed back to Jim Curl’s office and found the lad busy perusing papers:

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Jim office shuffle paperwork

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Jim telephone

Here he is doing one of those “multi-tasking” things these younguns’ today are so good at.

 

Well, it’s time to go. I hope you enjoyed this visit to the Waisner State Farm Agency.

I heartily recommend these folks based upon my years of personal experience.

I did not know any of these folks until I wandered in the door awhile back and liked what I saw and experienced so transferred my State Farm account here after the last move I made.

There were other agencies a little closer to my shanty but the couple of minutes of extra driving is a small price to pay for the outstanding service I have received at the Dan Waisner Agency.

If you drop in tell ‘em the Disgruntled Old Coot sent you!!!!

 

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USA Buffet Springfield Missouri

USA Buffet

 

300 East Battlefield Springfield, MO 65807

883-8800

 

South side of Battlefield Road across from the Big Lots!, Food-4-Less, and CiCi Pizza stores.

 

Taking over the location one occupied by the Foo Kee Chinese buffet American Buffet is a marvelous addition to Springfield dining.

 

The two serving tables offer a multitude of choices.

 

Standard American fare such as mashed potatoes, fried chicken, salisbury steak and many more choices.

 

Then there is the small USA-style “Mexican” food offerings that allow you to create your own dishes of that food style; tacos, taco salads, etc. The burritos looked really yummy but with so many choices I will have to wait for the next visit to try the Mexican food.

 

Making this buffet unique is that along with American and Mexican-type foods there is also a bounty of Chinese food offerings!!!

 

Every item from the Chinese section tasted delicious to me. Yummy!!!!

 

All the standard Chinese offerings are present. I especially enjoyed the crab Rangoon that used minimal fried dough surrounding the creamy. tasty center. No BIG “wings” spreading out from the gooey center with these yummy fellows!!! A fine way to obtain maximum taste while reducing calorie content.

 

There is also a sushi section and a Mongolian barbeque area that appear to be typical in their offerings but I was so busy eating the delicious offerings at the main buffet I did not try those offerings.

 

While eating all the ingredients were tasty and appear to be of high quality.

 

No gristle in the chicken nor hard bits of bone in the salisbury steak and the fried chicken was large and meaty and fried excellently. The thin breading had just the right amount of “crunch” for me and seasoned well… enough to taste but not overpower the meat.

 

The fish was lightly breaded and tasted good. My memory is far from perfect but I believe there was also non-breaded fish offered; my favored way since the calories from breading are avoided. I always look at the fish offerings since cheaply-bought fish usually shows that it is the “cheap stuff” by the off-colors upon it. If I had seen that at American Buffet I would have remembered that!!!

 

There are several vegetable and soup offerings along with a small desert area I did not sample. I was too full from the yummy meats, mashed potatoes, Chinese goodies and other plate-filling gustatory delights.

 

I will make another trip and try to get some pictures and comment about other aspects of this new-to-Springfield non-chain, locally owned purveyor of good things to eat!!!

Midwest Auto Nixa Missouri

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(Updated June 29, 2012)

I was taught to care for my possessions. And the more expensive they are to obtain it makes sense to make those possessions last as long as possible.

Vehicles; cars, trucks, vans, etc. are costly to us common folks. The rich can afford to replace a vehicle with little thought.

I have to make my “rides” last as long as I can.

Here is the pride of my personal fleet of one vehicle; my 2004 Chevy Silverado.

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The only vehicle I have purchased new. I need to make it last ten or more years for various reasons. Twenty years would be best. Economics and common-sense requires me to make the truck last as long as possible.

One way to do that is by proper maintenance. Keep the oil changed when needed. Replace various fluids when required. Mostly simple things but there IS a right way to perform those tasks.

I used to be able to do the basic stuff myself but as I age it becomes more physically difficult to do and my present living quarters, my beloved shanty, lacks a garage or a concrete pad that would allow access to that needed to make those efforts possible.

So, with decades of experience under my belt, who do I trust to perform that needed maintenance?

Not just anybody!!! My decades of life experience has taught me much about the auto repair and maintenance industry and what constitutes a good shop.

Midwest Auto has proven to me, repeatedly, that not only do the folks there know what they are doing they DO IT!!!

I trust them with my truck.

Midwest Auto does all my maintenance and when repairs are needed they also perform those tasks.

Repeated experiences with Midwest Auto has proven to me that they are knowledgeable and want to ensure my truck is kept on the road and do so reliably and honestly.

For that reason I decided that Midwest Auto deserves recognition; a reward for regularly and constantly providing the service and customer satisfaction ALL such firms should provide.

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Midwest Auto is not a big shop. Maybe that helps account for the quality of their service. They are not overwhelmed by sheer numbers of customers and can provide real service instead of rushing just another customer order number through the system.

When I asked permission to take some pictures of the one place I trust my truck the owner and employees agreed. For various reasons I decided to leave out names; you can learn that yourself if you visit the one place I trust my truck with!!!

 

Above is the resident GMC vehicle expert whose vast knowledge of GMC vehicles is just what I need for my Chevy pick-up.

The most recent maintenance session led to flushing the brake fluid and replacing it with synthetic fluid.

I was shown the test instrument that indicated water contamination at a high level. Replacing the brake fluid now likely prevented a much more costly repair later and ensured my ability to stop when my foot presses down on the stop pedal.

 

Of course the technicians are busy but they do have the time to explain to their customers what needs done and why. No “sneakiness” at Midwest Auto. They are upfront with all they do. I typically wait in the customer waiting area and read. Unlike other facilities in the past I feel no need to hover close to my truck, watching to ensure nothing is being done to make the maintenance or repair more costly or that a “needed repair” was not actually created so as to increase revenue! That does happen in SOME places but I have seen NO evidence in ANY way of that ever happening at Midwest Auto.

That is one of many reasons I recommend to others to use the services of Midwest Auto.

Oh, for the record, I have no financial interests with Midwest Auto. I am not a personal friend with any of the employees nor the owner. I am friendly with all the folks there but our interactions are at the firm only and those are professional-interactions that are worker and/or owner/customer based.

 

 

 

 

 

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Above is a picture of a “project car” one of the technicians is working on.

On my most recent visit for maintenance (May 7, 2012) I was shown the new V8 engine inside.

It started immediately and the power of the all-aluminum engine could be felt as much as heard.

I will make a return trip in the near future to get some pictures of the engine and the interior.

I have noticed in the past that shops with the most talented technicians often have a nearby vehicle that is a personal project of one of the employees.

My last maintenance visit included viewing some pictures of a 1963 Chevy Impala restored by one of the technicians. It was a beauty receiving a super-high score by judges at a car show.

The shop is obviously a work-place but not slovenly or unkempt as some I have seen.

Here he is; the owner/manager of Midwest Auto.

He coordinates activities, ensures the needed parts, when actually needed, are ordered and all the other tasks that running a successful business requires.

He is often found out in the shop. I have noticed excellent communication between the technicians and the “captain of the ship”. That surely helps ensure the continued quality work of the entire firm.

 

 

 

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And here’s my “farewell” picture as I return to my well-maintained truck which I readily entrust to Midwest Auto.

If you live in the Springfield/Nixa/Ozark area or nearby environs I highly recommend Midwest Auto.

They are located at the north-east corner of the Tracker Road/Hwy 160 interchange.

Hwy US 160 is also known as Missouri route 13 and, locally, as Massey Blvd.

How many names does one road need?

535 West Tracker Road, Nixa, Missouri.

(417) 725-1010

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(Begin Update)

Friday morning June 29, 2012. Another hot day atop the Ozark Plateau.

I jumped into the 2004 Chevy Silverado and headed for the grocery store to buy donuts.

Yummy donuts of many different shapes and topping and flavors.

A box of 12 was quickly reduced to a box of 11 as I munched on one while headed for Midwest Auto in Nixa, Missouri.

The truck did not need repair or maintained. Nope.

It was simply time to show some appreciation to the often under-appreciate vital people in the USA; the folks that keep the USA running.

Technicians of all types are critical to keeping our modern USA operating on a daily basis.

Folks who work on cars and trucks of many types and sizes. Aircraft mechanics and the folks who work on those massive locomotives.

Ships and appliances and electricians wiring a house.

A HUGE number of trades with working folks whose efforts make life better for all of us.

I believe more folks should drop by a job site where technicians do their job and often with little to no thanks.

I hereby proclaim June 29, 2012 as……..

Donuts for the Dudes Day

While at Midwest Auto I took some more pictures of the ongoing project. Keep scrolling for the latest about the official project car.

Next visit I will take a pen and paper and get the details such as model year, engine specs, etc.

My aging withered brain does not remember stuff like it used to.

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As the awesome project advances more pictures will be posted here.