STFU - A Guide For People Who Talk Too Much

Ask anyone who knows me, and they'll say I'm a talker. Ask anyone who has known me for a few years, and they will likely say I talk too much. Ask someone who just met me, and they might wonder where you got that idea. Years ago, I started to evaluate TTM Syndrome (Talk To Much... don't look for it in medical journals, it ain't there, I'm sure) and as I started to look at other TTMs, I was surprised. Yes, my self-diagnosis started with someone who actually talked more than I did (and had less of a filter; something I wasn't sure was possible). Make no mistake, this was one of the smartest people I had ever met. In our more meritocratic communities (my work in Technology, for example) this wasn't (always) seen as a bad thing, but that kind of behavior doesn't foster brainstorming and creative problem solving in others. So, in light of the fact that I just "talked too much" in the intro, here is a guide I made for myself. Edited and upd

Capsaicin Headaches - A Cure?

Okay, "cure" might be a bit optimistic, but permit me to relate to you the events of the last two days: I took my family out to Old Chicago. Now, I have not been avoiding restaurants which have hot food because I don't ever want to be "that person". You know, the one where you have to watch what you serve because he doesn't eat fish (which I don't), doesn't eat Chinese (which I don't), doesn't eat meat (which I do!), or has some other dietary restrictions which always seem to be imposed on those around him. Buuuut, after trying to get my family to go to Three Margaritas or another fine Mexican restaurant (knowing I'd have to probably eat off the kids menu), we decided on Old Chicago. For those who are unfamiliar with it, it's an awesome pizza-and-beer joint. I ordered their "Double Deckeroni" pepperoni pizza. No big deal. I took my first bite, and *hot*. Yes, it was too hot to be spiced with Italian spices. I knew righ

Capsaicin Headaches, Take 3

Okay, now we're at 4 1/2 months. I've seen an allergist (who is supposed to be an expert at allergies and intolerances) and MAN was that worthless. Me: I've had headaches on and off for the last 6 years or so, all year round. Over the last year they increased in frequency to almost daily. Then, in October when I stopped eating capsaicin, they disappeared overnight. Doc: Hmmm. Since they disappeared at the end of allergy season I don't think it's capsaicin. It's probably your grass allergy. Me: Did you catch the fact that it's been going on for SIX FRIGGIN YEARS???? Anyway, a few interesting tidbits... Now, when I *do* have something hot (to test it) I now have NO tolerance for hot sauce! Man, even the lamest, mildest seasoning is hot to me. My impression is also that my intolerance is getting significantly worse. Early on (November), I was able to have 4 drops of Cholula sauce on Mac and Cheese to no effect. It would take a bit more for me to get a

Capsaicin Headaches, Take 2

Well, now I am at about the 3 month mark in my experiment ( eliminating capsaicin from my diet ) and I have had a total of 4 headaches in the last three months and all but one were deliberately triggered. This is fascinating to me, as I wonder how many people are suffering the same as I am! ...and I'll tell you what, the idea of taking a capsaicin spray and sticking it up my nose as a "cure" scares the crap outta me. I sure hope it works for other folks who are having a different problem than I, but for me I think I would prolly be in so much pain I would but a bullet through my skull. Short update, and I'm grateful. I feel SOOOOO much better. 4 months ago I would not have even dared to dream I could be headache free for even so much as two weeks in a row...

Capsaicin Intolerance

Okay, so this is neither about God, nor is it about security, but it's too important for me to not post, so here goes. I have had debilitating headaches for years. Probably 6 or 7. They would typically hit one side of my head, often behind the eye, or to the side at the temple. My neck would sometimes hurt as if it were "out of whack". For years I had a "cure." I would take 3 Advil and one red Sudafed pill, then I would lie on my back for 45 minutes. It seemed that, usually, at the 45 minute mark I would feel my sinuses crackle and drain, and my headache would go away. Recently, about a year ago, this stopped working. I'd still do it, in hopes that it was lessening the pain, but it became a case of having to wait them out. This was unfortunate, as they used to also disappear without treatment overnight. Now, they would last for over 24 hours with alarming regularity. They were also happening much more frequently. What used to be an occasional (eve

Hacking Exposed and Customer Focus

Recently (yesterday) I had the opportunity to chat over a meal with George Kurtz, a Senior Vice President and general manager in charge of McAfee's Risk and Compliance unit. (whew, that's a mouthful). In attendance were a small number of other CSO's (or equivalent) and we listened to George, also a co-founder of Foundstone, the premier vulnerability scanning solution. We also bounced some ideas back and forth and generally shared information like good stewards of our respective enterprises. So, keep in mind that McAfee is a vendor. They sell products and services. I found it fascinating that one of the most common themes to the questions was not technology, rather it was something relating to the "human" side of information security. Question such as: how can we justify headcount? who dictates policy? how do we show value to management? I find this interesting for two reasons. One: security people often tend to be caricatures of other IT folks. Even more &


Okay, so after years of putting of taking the CISSP examination (read: trying to get someone else to pay for it) I finally scheduled my exam and took it in April. There are plenty of posts about it, and I don't want to duplicate what others have said, so I'll just put in this small bit: If you can regularly pass the FreePracticeTest exams online with an 80 or higher, then you are most of the way there. I don't think I ran into a single question on FreePracticeTests(FPT) that was on the actual exam, but they give a *great* fell for what to expect. This means, however, that just learning the answers to FPT won't do you any good. In my case, I had 10+ years of dedicated info security experience by the time I took the test, plus years of consulting and SA/SE work prior to that, so there was little on there to surprise me. What I did was go out and buy Shon Harris' excellent book and read the chapter titles to see what areas I seemed lacking in (based on the FPT).