Richard Loek's website

Set your mind to it

I was a the 21st Century Democratic club meeting on Friday, November 13, 2015.  An amazing conversation about homelessness, the financial impact and what we can do to move about and beyond homelessness.  Jennifer Loving of Destination Home spoke.  Very engaging.  I spoke up that none of the solutions will take three years.  They can all be accomplished in 24 hours – Set your mind to it!

We can accomplish anything – Set your mind to it.

  • We can end homelessness – if we set our mind to it.
  • We can build shelters for people in record time – if we set our mind to it.
  • We can feed the world – if we set our mind to it.
  • We can cure diseases – if we set our mind to it.
  • We can end terrorism – if we set our mind to it.
  • We can build a house in under three hours – if we set our mind to it.

What would you make happen – if you set your mind to it?

Homeless and physically challenged
My Buddy, Phil – homeless

Put yourself on alert – what will you take on today?

ADHD – my life, my power

TedxCMU – Stephen Tonti. 2014-11-15 20.41.35

Hello, I’m Rick, Richard or Ricky.  I too have been known as ADHD.  ADHD – my life, my power!  This guy, Stephen Tonti, is able to articulate how wonderful life is when you have a higher ability to focus, rather hyper-focus, on many things at the same time.  However, the other side of it is when something is not exciting, it can be difficult to find the time to complete a task.

Most people would swear at this time in my life I don’t posses ADHD.  Well, guess again.  I simply manage it much better than most.  I embrace my hyper-focus and manage distractions.  I can corral a room full of squirrel chasers.  I can distract the shiny object folks and keep them on task. I can wonder about in a conversation, bring it to conclusion and powerfully make a point.

When I was in school the system drugged me.  Very interesting to hear how this medication was likely the cause of much of my challenges in childhood.  I certainly encourage people to find better ways to manage our ADHD people.  It is a gift – not a problem.

My mother was amazing and my father dealt with my challenges.  They were told by doctors that I’d never amount to much.  Guess the doctor was a fool!

To their surprise I turned my attention to programming computers in my early 20’s.  I used my hyper-focus to my benefit.

In my forties I learned to no longer be annoyed when I lose my train of thought.  At this time in my life I thrive on my 12-16 hour days – sleep is for woosies!  I also thrive on my down time.  Work hard, rest (recover) hard.

I often tell people my extreme nature.  Here is what I say, I can bend over to tie my shoes and forget why I bent over.  Really, pretty close to the reality.

I wonder who else was “labeled” and shelved.  Our school systems can raise us to be strong or stifle us – which do you want for you and your family?

As he mentions Robin Williams at the end of the video – I’m saddened.  Robin suffered without the proper support(s) to thrive.  May he finally rest in peace.

My life is amazing – I invite you to have the same amazing life, through your creation.


This is the placeholder for my AARP resources. Please use and share this information with others.

I realized after posting this I need to be transparent – AKA no hidden agenda.  I do not receive, nor want, any financial benefit from your checking out these links.  Even if you buy something.

Password Testing

As the sun sets over the Pacific Ocean
As the sun sets over the Pacific Ocean – view from San Francisco

How strong is your password – this will let you enter sample passwords to see how long it takes for a system to crack it.  Consider swapping alphabet characters for symbols.  For example iFlyComputers might look like 1Fl\/C@mput3r$!  Try it out on the tool.

Antivirus Software

Webroot – the tool I use to protect my computer

McAfee – a very good tool, trial version

Symantec – I avoid at all cost (no link provided) I’m sure it does the job.  In my experience it has slowed my computer(s) too much.  To make matters worse, it won’t let me uninstall it.  I had to use a special tool, which did not remove everything.  I then had to call Symantec or chat with them, turn over control of my computer to their support person – who wiped all of their code off of my computer.  Not what I want from a software company.  Keep in mind I used Norton Utilities in the 1980’s

Avg – free version

Other Resources

A useful product or service is LegalShield – again, I realize no revenue from people buying this product.  I will note that Jane Kenney is a friend of mine.



A quick update on my brother

You may have read my story about finding my brother.  I have not said much since then other than my visits to the homeless task force meetings.

My brother was able to stay at with my son for about 90 days and then he transitioned into a Transitional Housing Unit (THU).  He has been there a little over two weeks.  There is no click your heals option as there was in the Wizard of Oz.  He has a long road before him.  I’m most thankful that his daughter, Emily, has been available to support him along this journey.

I’ve been there when I can.

Imagine if you will, there is a line.  That line is between supporting and pushing.  It is my nature to appreciate someone’s support – well, when it is offered in a way that I can accept it.  Pushing simply does not work for me.

My brother, Randy, is much like me in that regard.  He appreciates the support but strongly resists pushing.

I intend to create time to visit with my brother as his mind and schedule start to allow.

As the county board of supervisors begins to review the options forwarded to it from the Task Force on Homelessness, I’ll be requesting that you email, write letters and make phone calls to your elected officials.  I will alert you that Mr. Wasserman is on the task force and he warned the public to be aware that money for these suggestions still needs to be located.  We, the community present, pointed to the article in the Mercury News stating the County is spending $500 MILLION dollars each year for services for the homeless.  Of course you can’t simply move money in its entirety that $500 MILLION to cover these newly suggested programs.  However, we know that funding these new programs will reduce the drag on $500 MILLION.

If you are interested on having your elected officials supporting these new programs, let me know and I’ll keep up to date.

That’s all for now.

I feel so special – life as an introvert

The way I see life as an introvert is like this, at times I can be just as social as most people.  However, most of the time I am simply enjoying resolving life’s opportunities in my head.  Said differently, living as an introvert.

When people think they know me they would swear I am an extrovert.  They are mistaken.  Newly admitted to a group, I am usually quiet and very thoughtful.  I will open up with time.  I put this blog post under “Stigma” because sometimes it feels like being an introvert has some negative label or assessment.  Much like AD/HD or ADD has a stigma.  These are somehow misconstrued as mental health weaknesses.

I beg to differ.  Once people know me they really like what I bring to the relationship, community or group.

Today an article on Huffington Post sparked my sharing.  The article is about highly successful introverts.  I bet a high number of them also have the markings or traits of AD/HD.

I entrust you with the opportunity to get to know me, I know I look forward to the same.

Nothing more fulfilling than love

I had the opportunity to enjoy a dear friend’s 89th birthday.  This is her thank you note:Thank You Card Note Thank  you card

It says:

There isn’t enough thanks to give you for all you do and the the kindness you show Sylvia and I.

My birthday dinner was wonderufl and especially sharing it with Mary, You, Robert + family.

If I had a son I would hope he would be like you Rick.  So nice to have you and Mary in our lives.

What is the cause of addiction

rat drug study - what causes drug addictionDo you know what is the cause of addiction?  Really?  This article will likely not resonate with what you think you know.

This article is an eye opener.  There has been a study about drugs and addiction.  However the subjects used were rats.  This study brings a spin to that study and you’ll be amazed.

Who would have thought?  Would you have ever guessed?

Senator Jim Beall

I had the pleasure of listening to State Senator Jim Beall speak at a luncheon in April.  It was interesting to hear some of the initiatives.  If you aren’t aware of who Jim Beall is he is an elected official who has a passion for supporting Mental Health and getting it the funding it truly needs.

One subject Mr Beall spoke of was the cost of various shortcomings of our communities.  The phrase was who pays for <fill in the blank>.  The answer was we all do.  Who pays for the homeless?  We all do.  Today a report was released that put in concrete how badly we are all paying for this.

Keep in mind – I am not waiving my finger saying these people are an issue.  I’m stating boldly that our society has somehow failed these people.  Well, failed is harsh and only true if we give up on them.

My cry for help is to have the entire community, not just the folks nominated and put on some committee (which by the way excludes input from those they are supposed to serve).  Each and everyone of us can “be the one.”

Here is the article in the Mercury News that has the details of the costs.

Give a hand up, not a hand out.  Buy someone a meal, buy someone a razor, buy someone a hair cut and a shower.  Giving cash does not seem likely to truly provide the needed help.

Homeless and physically challenged
My Buddy, Phil – homeless