Archive for the ‘DeepThoughts’ category

True Value

July 16, 2009

It is finally official. Our local ‘true value’ hardware place has turned into rip-off central.

I needed an ac plug to install on a line cord for a lamp. I searched my garage and found some dippy little contraption where the connection to the wire was through spikes that would pierce the insulation to make contact. Either the spikes were too short or the wire insulation was too thick or both. This approach did not work.

Off to the hardware store. This was a common item which was certainly going to be in stock and affordable.

I finally found a bin full of plastic plugs with screw connections for the line cord. Price: $1.78.

Now it is not that I could ill afford to pay that much. I had a twenty burning a hole in my pocket but I was not about to pay nearly two bucks for an item that was worth 50 cents, tops.

So off to Harbor Freight. They only had the super quality Hubble style connectors. The ones with three prongs that you see on professional extention cords and industrial, heavy duty power equipment. Not really suitable for a lamp cord plug. Even so I made note that they were reasonably priced. Two bucks for the male and three bucks for the female. I have seen these same connectors at 8 bucks each at Home Depot.

Off to the local Albertsons. It was on the way home from Harbor Freight. Sometimes gocery stores have small hardware sections and sometimes they have ac line cord plugs. Not this time.

Stopped at a surplus machine tool shop on the way home. They did not have any ac line cord plugs either but they did have some really nice machine tools. They made Harbor Freight look like a junk store and their prices were only slightly higher than Harbor Freight.

Came home empty handed but better educated and a little wiser. No more True Value for me. Ever since they changed hands, they have gone downhill in a steady decline. You can pretty much tell if a place is worth entering by the number of cars parked in front. This particular hardware place used to have a full lot of cars at nearly any hour of the day. When I got there today I was the second of two cars parked out front. I also noticed that the Sears lot was practically deserted too. I have not been in a Sears in over two years. Soon I will be able to say the same for ‘True Value’.

A 20 minute search through 20 boxes of stored parts and I had the plug I needed. I knew I had one somewhere but thought it would be eaiser just to buy a new one. Next time I will know better.

Bail Out

March 24, 2009

Bail out refers to the act of using a bucket to ship water out of a boat that is flooding. If done properly, it can save the boat from sinking. You can’t ‘bail out’ a boat that is already under water.

Picture this. A very high cliff. At the edge of the cliff is a large factory. Smokestacks everywhere. Suddenly the entire structure falls off the cliff. People scream, scurry around, claiming ‘it is too big to fall’. It is too big to fall mainly because it will make a hole large enough to drain the lake below when it hits the ground.

Lets save it! How!? Throw money at it!

So now you have a mob of politicians at the edge of the cliff throwing money down on top of the falling enterprise. More, more, more, money. How much does it need? How much have you got? Throw it all down there.

Before long the enterprise hits the bottom of the cliff, makes a large hole. drains the lake and in the process sucks all that money down with the water. Gone forever, enterprise, money, and lake. The only thing left are the politicians at the top of the cliff blaming each other for the mishap.

Now we all know that only a moron would throw money at a falling (failing) enterprise. By the time an enterprise gets into serious trouble most knowlegable stockholders have already moved on. Whats left is stuff that is going to hell regardless. Throwing money after it is like spitting into the wind. No, it is worse than that. At least if you spit into the wind it will come back and hit you in the face. Not so when you throw money down a rat hole.

So, why is it that politicians don’t know that? Well, that is not a fair question or even a logical question. That question indicates that the person asking does not understand what a politician is. Look it up in the dictionary.

Political solutions are political because they often favor an indefensible position on the part of the politician. What us commoners call common sense, the politician sees as inconvenient obstacles. You see, ALL politicians have an ax to grind. They ALL have a set of wants, wishes and desires some which may not have anything to do with the people who elected them. If the politician did not tell you what they were going to do if elected, or, worse, if they lied to about that, and even worser, if you believed those lies, they no longer have anything to keep them from running amuck. Regardless of what is in their oath of office or in the Bible their hand blasphemed. Once you sell your soul to the devil, you become his representative.

So, as we wonder why so many politicians appear to us to be morons, people who lack any common sense, we are simply not analyzing the situation correctly. We are in danger of being the morons.

Go back to the ‘falling of a cliff’ analogy. It is all over things are calming down when two weeks later a few survivors of the now defunct enterprise go swimming around the hole their enterprise made. They find a few bills came floating up to the surface. They pocket the bills. The public discovers their find and becomes indignant. So much so that they insist that the same ‘morons’ that threw the money down the rat hole take away the few bills from the survivors. Now we have AIG.

AIG is not the problem. The political mis-solution was the problem. It still is the problem. We need politicians who share and respect our morals, laws, and culture. We need to retire those who do not feel and act as we do.

BillBoards and BillBords

February 27, 2009

We do not like to travel but every now and then it cannot be avoided. Our last ‘now and then’ occurred last weekend. We are always glad to arrive at our destination. We are always glad to get back. What we don’t like is the actual traveling. It is boring. Especially when it is the same old route we always take to the same old place.

On this last trip I amused myself by reading the billboards. At least some of them anyway. One that caught my eye was an ad from a builder claiming ‘we build houses the way you want’.

When you are bored, you have time to think. As I thought about what I had read, I began to wonder what sort of company would say something so insane.

How many people hire builders who don’t build houses the way they want? Why would a builder even consider it necessary to make such an insane comment?

Have they not heard of architects? Maybe not. Perhaps they are a bunch of farmers who have experience at building barns. Barns, houses, only difference is a few more windows in houses. We can do that. Heck it will save money on wall material. Yeah, lets tell people we build houses too.

I don’t remember the builders name but I am sure going to be on the lookout for folk that claim to build stuff the way I want. They have no idea.

While on the subject of billboards, I could not help but chuckle at one looking for someone to advertise on their billboard. The billboard reads something like, ‘Does billboard advertising work, just did.’ That false assumption is followed by a phone number.

Now if I were advertising on a billboard, I would want to get people to call the phone number I provide in the ad. When they do, that is when billboard advertising works. Billboard advertising does not work for people drawing false conclusions. It didn’t ‘just work’ because I did not call the number.

In fact, even if I were in the market to put an ad on a billboard, I would not call that one because his advertising approach is moronic.

Lost Mind

February 11, 2009

When someone accuses you of having lost your mind, just tell them:

Its not lost. I know exactly where it is. I just don’t bother to use as much as I used to. Gives me a headache.

Then see what happens. You might be elected to office.

Funny?

January 23, 2009

Funny is in the ears of the beholder and the brain in between.

Lots of things I deem funny are just stupid catty comments to others. That is okay. I have learned to ignore the static and interference.

Recently we left on a shopping trip to a local grocery/dry goods store. Sort of a country store with a suburban flavor. After we got gas….for the car….we found a place to park that was right up front, close to the store entrance, right next to the cripple slots. Wow! Such luck.

My better half could not help but voice her pleasure. ‘Wonder why this prime parking space is unoccupied”.

Without even thinking my reply was, ‘Maybe because no one is in it’.

Catty comment. Indeed, but this time it struck her as funny.

Beer

September 13, 2008

Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy. All you need is money.

Used to be you could buy a sixpack for $1.30, but that was back in the 60s. Now it is more like $6.50 for a sixpack. Oh well, everything else is higher too. Everything except the income.

Back in the 60s I drank beer every chance I got, which was not all that often. Back then, when asked, we told people we drank beer because we liked the taste; wink, wink. The real reason was because it contained alcohol and got us high. What a deception at such an early age. It was only by the grace of God that we did not all turn out to be politicians! Or alcoholics. Or, God forbid, alcoholic politicians!!

Back then it did not matter what brand. The cheaper, the better. They all contained alcohol and after the third can it did not matter if it was a premium brew or the cheapest panther piss we could find. It was all good.

How times have changed. Today the panther is still pissing beer but the price is up close to $20 bucks a case. For two dollars more I can get REAL beer!

I first tried Shiner. I like their family reunion assortment. The following month I decide to try the Samuel Adams assortment. WoW! I like the boston lager the best.

For the first time in my life I am proud to say I really do like the taste and no; wink, wink, about that!

CNG

September 5, 2008

Compressed Natural Gas. This stuff has been around as long as gasoline. We are told it is 40 percent cheaper than gasoline. So how come hardly anyone uses it? Is the conversion to CNG expensive? Is it as safe as gasoline? Wasn’t there a town on the east coast that got blown away when a tanker carrying CNG blew up? Since there is no refining involved, how come it is only 40 percent cheaper? Will it still be 40 percent cheaper after everyone has been converted to use CNG?

Maybe that 40 percent is because it is not taxed as heavily. I understand that gasoline carries about 80 cents per gallon state and federal tax. No point in taxing CNG because hardly anyone uses it.

Hey, here is an idea; we will put masts and sails on our cars and let the wind push us around. Make that Pickens guy proud.