Showing posts from July, 2018

Going to the gym, and more happily, leaving it.

There was a tree or two, the hot sun. Some weeds.

My friend and I sat in the truck in the parking lot of the gym. "We only said we should go to the gym," I said. "Technically, we are at the gym."

I hate going to the gym.

I'm not Joe Athlete, and never have been.

Still, as far as the gym goes, I've gone pretty regularly, three times a week, for several years. You wouldn't know it from looking at me of course. I don't go to get a bikini body (oh my gosh, no, I would never wear one). I don't go so I can look hot in clothes. I don't go so I can post my workout stats and photos on social media to let the world know I mastered my body and have achieved health idolatry, disguising it as faux encouragement for others instead of bragging. At this point, I go to maintain bone density and basic muscle tone, enough cardio fitness so I'm not that person out of breath after a flight of stairs, and enough flexibility so I don't end up walking with …

Grammar police, your contribution to this world will be forgotten.

On my old blog, I first wrote a post in March 2014 about the online Grammar Police (or Grammar Nazi's, as some call them). It got an extreme lot of hits and discussion, most of which made me laugh. The comments were full of people agreeing and disagreeing with each other, some poking the hornet's nest by correct spelling, typos, and grammar.

I couldn't have asked for more perfectly fitting commentary.

A recent foray into combative comments reminded me of that old post, as the person responding to me first invoked Godwin's Law and brought up a Hitler/Nazi reference, and then went and corrected an error.

A bit later the fellow chimed in with another salvo of yada yada, ending with...the suggestion that I cannot comprehend what I read. With these folks, it's always the same. Their parry is sketchy, and their riposte is a jab at someone's verbal intelligence.

These folks are easy to identify by key phrases/ideas:

You missed the pointYou don't know what you'r…

When the HR guy tells you you're confusing.

“I don’t know how else to tell you this,” he says to me, “but I find you confusing.”

I look at my resume and cover letter — the required documents — in his hand and I realize attempt #14 did not land a job for me and think I am not a human resource.

I leave the HR office wondering how I had become a list of what I was not, wondering when Photoshop had become a skill, wondering why being a teacher, a designer, an artist, an entrepreneur, a pastry chef, a get-off-my-ass-work-hard self-starter — how a jack-of-all trades was really a hack-of-all trades.

I realize there was one common denominator in my job-hunting failures: I was applying for jobs where they were looking for people to apply.

People don’t know what they want, I decide. Not really.

Someone left, or there is more work to do, and they create a list of what they think will take care of it. They think they want a Photoshop expert instead of someone who can work with a lousy computer and clunky software and still pull off a grea…

We welcome your opinion.

This is a day and age where everyone thinks having a strong emotion/opinion is justification for sharing. They think the First Amendment is somehow a guarantee that they get to share their opinion with anyone and that it must be given "due respect."

Due respect, indeed.

You may have the right to free speech, but I am not obligated to listen nor care.

There are only a few times I'm interested in someone's opinion. If you're an expert and you know what you're talking about and have solid information to share that you believe would be of helpful interest, OK. Or, if I came to you because you are an expert and you know what you're talking about and have solid information to share that I believe would be of help, OK. If you're a close friend or family member and you actually have some skin in the game of my life and care, OK.

But the shotgun approach to receiving unsolicited opinions from random strangers is of zero interest and curiosity, of zero value.

I hate this hacker crap.

It's been a long day at work. It's hot and I'm tired and overwhelmed. I'm weary on many levels and I've just paid for three expensive car repairs that have eaten through my savings like a flamethrower in butter. 
So what do I find in my email today when I get home?

"I'm going to send it to your nine contacts."

Wow, dude, seriously.

I'm no stranger to these kinds of threats from these kinds of losers; thanks to the protest a year back, I already have a cartoon ready to use for these pathetic excuses for humanity. I think we're dealing with someone who looks like panel #6 for sure.

So, first I headed to the FBI, reported the email, and then to other various law enforcement entities.

Then I responded back to this cretin.


The problem with online reviews, and a guide to not being a jerk customer.

"...most people tend to only use review systems to hurt businesses rather than help them. In other words, you might get a few 5-stars, but people are most passionate about what they do with a one-star." --  Me, to my sister, in an email.

Humans are vindictive and emotional, caring less about other people in favor of ourselves or circling the wagons around our own; the internet enables this quality, especially in reviews.

On Google, I am a "Local Guide." You get to that illustrious level of meaningless achievement based on how you participate with Google Maps in helping them build their product. I upload a lot of photos of places I visit, and I've left about 100 reviews for businesses all over the country and in other countries. I have a particular approach in how I leave reviews, which is based upon what I've learned about how people use reviews.

Understanding What Reviews Should Be, And End Up Being
Reviews are meant to help other customers make decisions …

Finding something to watch on Netflix.

We in the viewing audience had this crazy idea that ultimate choice would be ultimate freedom. No more racing home to have your butt in the couch to not miss starting time, or setting the VCR or DVR and hoping the power wouldn't flicker and screw up all attempts to record your show while you were at work.

All freedom all the time.

Whatever show we'd want, when we wanted it.

Perfectly recommended shows based on our revealed preferences.

"Why in the heck is Netflix recommending that horror movie to me?"

"I watch one documentary, and I can't get a decent piece of fiction to show up in my feed now."

"Why are the trending shows different than the ones I see in my account?"

So let's say you set aside two hours to watch a movie. You've already failed. It's not enough time. You need about an hour to figure out what you're going to watch and as you can see, the math won't work out for you.

"How about this one?"

"Only …