Old Frog

It just has to be Monday.  Internet is acting up this morning, this may or may not get posted.  I am a little bit irked, you see the county went and raised my taxes again, some 12% this time.  Now here is the catch, “I didn’t get any kind of raise in MY income, have not had any kind of raise in a couple of years now.”  Why is it that we are constantly feeding this monster, and at the same time, receiving nothing in return?

You can take a frog, dump him in a pan, turn on the heat, and he will stay right there and eventually fry in the scalding water and die.  But you take the same frog, toss him in hot water, and he will hop right out.  You see frog # 1 his environment changed a “little at time” and he didn’t notice the change until it killed him.  Frog #2 noticing the immediate change, took evasive action at the very beginning.

Now I am just a little frog, swimming in a big pond, but I gotta tell you, I am starting to relate to croaker number one right now, the water is heating up in my pan and I am ready to get out.

It is hard to say how much more the American Consumer can take as a whole.I  t seems to me that the new catch phrase in this country seems to be “passed onto the consumer” and personally, I am getting awfully tired of it.  I really do not have a clue as to what can be done about it other than lament the fact, but I am so tired of taking it in the shorts on just about everything, it is far beyond funny anymore.  It is beginning to become tragic.

I Pledge Allegiance has been changed to … Bend over and take some more.

Gasoline comes first, no rhyme or reason to it, but it continues, unabated.  While I am at it, “I am tired of this rant over and over, on the environmentalists, and the tree huggers being the problem.  ”Drilling in Anwar, Yellowstone, Yosemite, the Grand Canyon, isn’t going to meet one year of our petroleum needs.

IT IS NOT THE TREE HUGGERS.

Why doesn’t someone ask them why there are no new refineries, why the refiners are only running at a small percentage of what they are capable of? Why we have an “artificial shortage” of motor fuel in this country.  The numbers are in, people are driving less, consumption is down, so why isn’t the price going down.  No, it increases.  It defies logic.OkieCity is a virtual Ghost Town any night of the week after eight o’clock.  We are shut down.

So if we are using less, much less, why are we still paying more?Bad math.  Even I can see that, and I wasn’t always the sharpest knife in the drawer, when it came to math.

Stop blaming the tree huggers … Last year during hurricane season, this stuff was increasing on a daily basis on the “speculation of a storm in the Gulf of Mexico that never really materialized.  But in America, what goes up ….. stays up … it doesn’t always go back down.

No profit in that.

Cops in Atlanta this week started adding a $12 fuel surcharge for speeding tickets, airlines are weighing customers, where does it end.B  ig change in breakfast items.  Grain cereals have jumped on the bandwagon and are now giving us less in the box for more money.  Weights are down, check it out the next time you are in the store, and you will see what I am talking about.  They are selling us less product for more money.  With the high price of diesel (which is a waste product of petroleum by the way) farmers are going to have to have more to cut even a marginal profit this year.

Beer is being served in smaller glasses, ice tea and other refreshments have gone to smaller sized glass.  I note that the plates in one place we usually frequent, over night, shrank in size.  Not necessarily a bad thing for the American Consumer who is face it, a bit on the tubby side.  We used to go to this place, and we would split an order of Fajita’s the wife and I, now I find out that they are charging me $2 for the second plate, which of course, “used to be free.”

They can now call me the hacked off Old Gringo and say Adios, I will go somewhere else.

Electric service is up, why not, everyone else is doing it.But there has to be a point at which this will cease to be realistic.  We cannot keep absorbing all of these price increases, over and over, there comes a time, when the glass is full.  We are quickly reaching our point on the scale, it has come to where push meets shove around here and sadly it has reared its ugly head a lot sooner than I thought it would.

Today I read but one more credit card article, this couple in hock up to their ears. $16,000 on one credit card, owed $106,000.00, on a house that had an appraised value of only $63,000.00.  I still see the big screen televisions going out the door at China Mart and the new paper tags on the cars (new cars) all over town, and frankly, I wonder how it is that they can still do this?

It is a lot different at our house … The wolf is baying at the backdoor and we have nothing to toss out to satisfy him.  Old frog number one is really getting tired of this —- .

How about you?

OOO

Feeding The Monster

Recently I read an interesting piece and it said that blogs that have visitors in the range of 3,000 per day, are capable of generating $75,000.00 per year in revenue. This would mean you would have a minimum of 100,000 people coming to your site yearly, and advertisers consider that a “gold mine” the article went on to explain that they would pay you handsomely for the privilege of adding you to their fold.

My neighbor Donna is on me all the time, “Why don’t you put up ad’s on your site, you are missing out on a lot of money.” I have a friend in the Seattle, Washington area that tells me that I should actively seek out a newspaper for a daily column. My brother-in-law has mentioned in passing that I am “squandering my gifts” and that I should be doing something “worthwhile” with my talents.  

And if I had a dime for every person who has told me that “I should write a book” well …… I’d have enough bus change to take me to Cleveland, Ohio, to the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame. All in all, no shortage of folks determined to see that I embark on a new lifestyle and/or career choice late in life.

But as with all things, there are problems.

First there is more to life than money, sure people will tell you that you are nuts if you explain it that way, but it is true. Jack Benny once said, when asked if he thought he was going to heaven or not, “If I cannot take my money with me, then I don’t want to go there.” Some people say “money will not buy happiness” and others will tell you, “they are shopping in the wrong places.”

Money won’t buy you happiness by a long shot, it will however buy you a better class of friends.

There is a lot more to life than money, money will for instance, buy you a fine dog, but only love will make him wag his tail. Money isn’t everything. But we were talking about bloggin … I digress. When you hire out, then you have to give in. Then there are things called “deadlines and editors” and both I can barely tolerate and most of the time, absolutely hate.

Both are a pain in the part of you that goes over the fence last. I don’t need an editor telling me “that you cannot write that, or this is not acceptable” and I am low maintenance, I surely do not need another deadline in my life. If you write it, then it ought to be “yours” and you should have final say so on the piece. Some people call this “artistic freedom” or “creative control.”

You cannot take something from someone (money or wages) and maintain “control” you are always asked to give up something in return. This is why I can never understand the concept of lobbyists taking elected officials out and picking up the tab for everything, and then these very same people saying ….. “Aw, they are swell guys, and they do not expect anything out of me in return.”

Yeah, sure.

So I suppose you could make a lucrative living from this sort of thing, a few people could, but in the end, it is going to take a lot of hard work. This may appear to some as easy but let me clue you in, it isn’t. Technorati, says that popular blogs make big bucks, thanks to Google, ad networking, and search-based advertising on the net.

But there is always the ever present catch, the hammer to speak, and that is production. You have to produce, almost daily, something worthwhile, interesting, different and often amusing, to develop what I call a readership.

You are feeding the monster; you are supplying it the material to drive traffic to the site. Not an easy nut to crack on any given day of the week. Often variety is hard to find, a good idea, has already been taken, someone beat you to the punch or it has been posted before.

Now cruise around the net and take a look at what is out there, plenty of examples of what NOT to do can be found. In the wrong mind, this media tool can lead to endless top 10 lists, favorite things, recycled ideas, half-baked cock-eyed notions, tons of viral images/video’s, and for lack of a better word, massive information pollution.

While there are certainly a great many bloggers “plenty of people on the internet that are posting at best dubious worthless or annoying garbage the one’s (writers or hacks, bloggers) with real staying power are those who can find a way to balance “fast-food type posts” along with a well crafted article now and then that will keep readers coming back.

The experts say the short rapid fire piece works the best, something I have never been able to master myself. But then again, I am not in it for the money, I do this for fun. It is illegal after all in my state to run over politicians (jay-walking or not), and they will not allow me to carry an exposed firearm (I don’t have the thirty-nine bucks for the permit, just bought gas).

So I use this forum to vent … and sometimes … Amuse

I tried working for “the other guy” and I didn’t really care for it. So I don’t know what to tell people who have it all figured out for me, what I should or should not do, I just know this. My fame is vapor and my riches take to wings, only one thing in this life endures, and that is character. Tell it like it is, throw it out on the porch and see if the cat will lick it up, run it up the dog-gone flagpole and see if anyone salutes it … Then you might have a winner.

You do that, and you will pick up a readership. And above all remember … Money is just an aphrodisiac which fate brings you to cloak the pain of living … William Powell …Finally, I don’t ever see me getting stinkin’ rich from writing this thing, but I sure wouldn’t mind smelling bad one of these days.

000

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