Archive for September 2006

Selling Radios

September 22, 2006

Over the years I have sold many a radio. Sometimes I made a modest profit. More often I took a loss. More recently I considered myself lucky to break even. The common thread here is that they did sell.

I have been offering a complete ham radio station for sale for over a month now. I have had four seemingly serious inquiries and three offers to buy, but no one seems to have the means to pay for it.

So here I sit with my Kenwood TS-120-S, Kenwood PS-30 power supply, and Shure HM-28 desk microphone. All this stuff works, is in excellent condition, well cared for by its original, non-smoking owner. The whole shebang can be yours for $290 including shipping to your front door.

Hmmm..$290 dont buy much today and $50 of it is wasted on shipping. The equipment is extra. I do have plenty of other stuff that does the same thing.

Including this post, I have spent entirely too much time chasing a dollar amount that does not make much difference to me. Three times I have had prospects change their minds about buying. There has to be a clear message in there somewhere.

Yup, there are easier ways to make money. I will just work a little smarter, get $290 through the effort, deposit it in my bank account and keep the equipment. It is probably worth more than $290 to me as a standby rig. Besides, I can save $50 on the deal because it is already here and does not need to be shipped.

Forgive

September 22, 2006

‘Forgive and forget’. I have heard that expression more than once in my life but have never give it much thought. Now that I have thought about it, it does not make much sense. Shouldnt it be ‘forget and forgive’? Dont you have to forget the wrong before you can forgive the wrongdoer? Forgetting first would certainly make it easier to forgive.

Still,’forgive and forget’ is the phrase that is more generally accepted and I think I know why. When people say they forgive, they are really only saying that they will refrain from seeking revenge. They wont try to get even, but they fully intend to learn a valuable lesson from the experience. This taints the quality of forgiveness given. Such forgiveness is not unconditional and free because it results in the wrongdoer being treated differently than he was before his transgression. True forgiveness restores the wrongdoer to the same stature and privledges he had before his transgression. There is no one keeping an eye on him making sure he cannot harm a second time.

Doesnt it seem logical that unconditional forgiveness would have a better chance of getting the transgressor to repent and change his ways? Maybe, but how many of us would risk our welfare on such a chance?

Tickle Me Elmo

September 21, 2006

I saw a demonstration of the new Tickle Me Elmo doll on Good Morning America yesterday. They sent him through all three levels of hilarious laughter. Very impressive!

Suggested retail price is under fifty dollars. I predict the price will double, perhaps triple and more depending on how close you are to December 25 this year.

A word to the wise, if you are considering purchasing one of these dolls, make sure you buy plenty of batteries. Those hatches at the bottoms of both of his feet are battery access hatches. I suspect he takes D cells and more than just one per foot.

Ooops, my mistake. He takes six AA batteries. I bet they need frequent replacement.

This would would be as good a time as any to invest in a recharger and some rechargeable batteries

If you have any money left over this season (HA!!!), you might also buy some stock in a company that manufactures batteries. Battery disposal companies might also do well.

As a parting thought, speculators might want to load up on a few of these dolls before parents have a chance to clear the shelves of stock. I bet a genuine doll will bring big bucks after the cheap knock-offs start shipping from some place in China.

Headlines

September 20, 2006

I just read about drawing readers by writing good headlines. The gist of the article is that if the headline is good, it will attract interest. We are also told that if a headline attracts interest, it is good.

I dont know if all that is true or not. Or if it works. My posts dont have headlines. They have titles. I always thought a good title was one that accurately described the content of the post. There was no goodness weighed on its attention getting ability, just on how well it described the content.

An attention getting title in front of a boring article is just going to make the reader angry. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. If reader dissapointment is extreme or if the reader thinks he has been fooled, he may remember who did it and not allow that to happen again.

Then you have the case of a really good title (or headline) with equally valuable content but it is only of value to a small percentage of the reader base.

My take on titles (headlines) is that they are not all that important. They take care of themselves as long as the writer focuses on good content and the title accurately announces that content. Finding content that has universal appeal is difficult to do.

How about ‘FREE MONEY‘? Talk about universal appeal? Go ahead, dont be chicken. Click on the link.

Teriaki

September 20, 2006

You can use this marinade on chicken, beef, turkey, pork, and probably any other meat that can be marinated. Marinating is the process of imparting flavor into the meat by soking it for a length of time in herbs and spices.

You can buy Teriaki sauce at the grocery store. It is not expensive a 12oz bottle is priced at under five dollars. If you really want to cheap out, you can always make your own. You wont really save all that much money out-of-pocket but you will have two times or more the amount of sauce for the same price.

Soy sauce, onion, and ginger are the main ingredients of Teriaki sauce. Add grated onion and one grated section of ginger to a bottle of soy sauce and one bottle of water. If the soy sauce is not low sodium or ‘lite’, you may want to add an additional bottle of water.

Twilight Zone

September 20, 2006

I consider the Twilight Zone TV series one of the last remnants of creativity in science fiction progam material. Most of those episodes presented original ideas and stories. Most of them were good too.

I am refering to the first four seasons of the program only because that is all I have familiarity with.

Now I can become even more familliar with those episodes. I Have finally managed to digitally store all the episodes aired in the first four seasons of the program.

Over 100 episodes taking up space on 17-4gig DVDs in the form of mpeg2 movies. They are cataloged, indexed, and ready to be transfered back to hard disk to become a Twilight Zone video jukebox. All I need is 100gig hard drive, something not all that uncommon or expensive.

Antennas in General

September 20, 2006

KT-34 Beam

Antennas, one of my favorite subjects. I am always looking for the antenna equivalent of the holy grail. The one piece of wire that when shaped and mounted will outperform everything else, cover all frequencies, even allow moonbounce communications with QRP rigs.

I am sure others would like to stumble over similar acorns. If you are looking for them here, you will be dissapointed. Here you will only find mundane, proven solutions, and lots of reasons why the more exotic solutions are more wishful thinking than solution.

If you expected to find deeper analysis and variety in the art of building antennas, I refer you to the site maintained by L.B. Cebik.

The following link will take you back to the main antenna page.

This link will take you back to the K5DKZ home page. You can also get there by selecting K5DKZ under the Pages heading in the green sidebar.