Saturday, April 23, 2011

Writing, which words to use?

The writing of "Joe's Story: The Book of a Lifetime" and becoming a published author took a long time. From beginning to end it was a fantastic learning experience for me. The story itself was already in my head of course, but the way of putting it on paper was really muddled. The horrors of the Carbon Monoxide poisoning and resulting near death and amnesia experience were kind of tough to deal with again. Recording it in book form became a wonderful tonic though and brought me more completely into the world so many others may take for granted.

I am quite intelligent but my many areas of expertise didn't include the rules of composition, writing and journalism. Much to my eventual dismay. As a matter of fact, my ignorance and resistance to commonly accepted rules of writing may very well have been my undoing as far as getting on the best seller list of published books. Following rules is not necessarily a guarantee to writing success but it has been my experience that it definitely does help. As an example, every professional reviewer, except one, that has received Joe's Story for an opinion has refused to go past the first few pages. If they were professional enough to give me a response, (most are actually very rude and far to aloof to offer any reply whatsoever) they simply said they were not interested in that type of story. What a loss, they had a wonderful, true, funny and heart warming, memorable story in their hands and they passed it up. Their loss but I learned not to take it personally, it was my choice not to follow the rules.

Things that still evade my understanding will always haunt me I guess. its and it's, either and neither, friends or freinds, affect or effect, just where to put a : or a ; , climbed or clumb, you know, stuff like that. The questions of this weekend are naturally save or saved, thief or angel, heaven or hell. I wonder how I could write about them? It's already been done though anyway, I'll just leave it at that....Happy Easter1

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Government debt

The national debt of the United States of America is in the trillions of dollars and going higher.

I am confused! Yeah, yeah, I can hear you agreeing but that's not quite what I mean. I am a business man. I run my business based upon the amount of money that comes in from sales or investments. If I spend too much the business ceases to exist. Every day we read about companies that are going bankrupt. They spent more than they took in. Some companies used a type of bankruptcy that protected them from creditors while they got their act together and cut expenses enough to pay their debt. Others simply closed the doors, sold everything at auction and the debt got paid with pennies on the dollar. What is the United States Congress going to do? They are in charge of the countries finances. Nobody wants to be blamed for doing what they need to do.

Everyone from every part of our government screams that they can just barely do with the amount of money they receive from the tax coffers. None of them has volunteered to take a reduction of funds and tighten their belt to make it all work within the budget. Not one! When the opposing political parties try to negotiate they get stuck on which favorite department gets special treatment. That's the part I am confused about.

If a business spends 10% too much, they usually decrease spending "across the board" by 10%. All parts of the business feel the pinch. no matter how much they scream, all areas join in the process. Why can't our government do that? Everyone would have to make do with a certain percentage of funding loss. Old, young, rich, poor, everyone would feel the pinch. Probably most of our congressmen and women would be voted out at the next election but at least we'd have a balanced budget. It doesn't look like that scenario is going to unfold any time soon but then again, maybe it will. I just probably don't understand how government spends our money. That's probably why I'm confused.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Goob bye Cable TV

Do you have a cable or dish TV provider? I do! I won't for long though. I have a defective piece of equipment and it will take them over a week to repair it. That's what I was told by a very confrontational, barely civil, aloof customer support representative after I was on the wait list for over 25 minutes holding to plead my case for help. She spoke as if I was blessed that she actually had time to listen to me and any suggestion I made was simply ignorant, unfounded grumbling not worthy of her consideration. It started when I mentioned that our connection was cutting in and out. She said: "Well, I can't be blamed for your faulty telephone equipment! I don't know what you expect me to do about that." I asked her if the conversation was being recorded. She said, "Yes it is." I asked if it was OK with her if I recorded it too. She said' "Fine, go ahead." I did. After she calmed down and finally shut up long enough to listen to what the problem appeared to be to me she said that repair may well be necessary and they could manage to work me in in about 7 to 10 days. We talked about it for a while and arrived at a time in 8 days that was convenient for them and me. How nice of her. I stated that I felt they must be tremendously understaffed to have a waiting period that long to repair a long standing, paying customer's problem. She said that was not the case but she could understand from talking to me why I may feel that way. I told her that I felt she was being condescending in her answer. She said she was not but could understand how a person like me would feel that way. I said I felt that comment was also a bit on the sarcastic side but I was exceedingly curious what she meant by, "a person like me." She said, The service rep. will call 15 minutes before they arrive. Is there anything else she can help with and did she answer all of my questions and were her answers helpful. I said that a person like me wasn't sure exactly how to answer that question. She asked if I was done, I said yes. We ended the conversation with that. I am sure that my experience was unusual for a number of reasons. #1, she spoke excellent English. #2 I only waited a little over 25 minutes to get a live person, #3 She spoke as if my being a customer in need of service was not all that important to her or her company. #4 The repair rep. is only taking 8 days to service our problem. #5 They do not offer any discount for disrupted service because it only affects part of my service, not all of it so they don't feel I am all that much inconvenienced. I am probably being petty about the whole thing. But, I figure that anyone that will accept payment of $65 every month for years from someone that is not important enough to service in a timely fashion so they can save money and create more profit for themselves, really doesn't need my business. I own a service business. If I asked my customers to wait a week they'd go away and never come back. I learned from that. I am going to cancel their service, after they fix it, and I won't ever come back. I actually prefer local TV broadcasting anyway. In the past 7 years I have spent $7000 with them. If they don't need it I wish they'd give it back. Now they simply won't get it from me for the next 10 years. How's that for complaining huh?..............................Good bye cable TV!
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