Monday, February 27, 2012

An appreciative customer …

I have three children and they are all self employed, as was my late husband. It takes a lot of drive and acceptance to be able to withstand some of the uncertainties of free-lancing but they seem to handle it well.

Facing, and satisfying, the public is not an easy task so it’s always a boon when a customer appreciates a job that’s been done and demonstrates their thanks above and beyond paying the bill.

My middle child, an avid New York Giants fan, had just that experience this week. He’d remodeled a kitchen early in the month and he and the owner had many spirited conversations about the Super Bowl.

Needless to say they were on opposite sides and it was with great glee that Matt cheered on the Giants, who were the winners!

Now fast forward to this week when he received a call from his customer who told him he’d been surfing the web and couldn’t resist purchasing a certain gift for him. And here it is …

… a retro style New York Giants toaster that actually toasts bread with the team’s logo ! Not exactly a “must have” but a fun addition to the kitchen and special because it came from a thoughtful and fun-loving customer .

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Ain’t it the truth?

(This is a repeat entry and I apologize to those who have read it before … but a recent experience of mine so closely resembled it that I couldn’t resist posting it again!)

A man in a hot air balloon realized he was lost. He saw a person on the ground and yelled down to him, “Can you help me? I don’t know where I am.” The man replied, “Sure, I’ll help you. You are in a hot air balloon hovering 30 feet above the ground...between 40 and 41 degrees North latitude and between 59 & 60 degrees West longitude.”

“Wow, you must be an AA sponsor”, said the man in the balloon.

“I am”, said the man, “but what gave me away?”

“Well”, answered the balloonist, “everything you told me is technically right but I am still lost. Frankly you’re not much help at all and you might even have delayed my trip.”

“Well then,” replied the man with a smile, “you must be an AA sponsee." The balloonist was amazed and said, “I am, but how did you know?”

The man on the ground said, “Well, you don’t know where you are or where you’re going. You have risen to where you are due to a lot of hot air. You are expecting other people to solve your problems and the fact is that you are in exactly the same position you were in before we met, but, somehow now ... IT’S ALL MY FAULT” !

Monday, February 20, 2012

A Pencil is a pencil … unless you’ve got a sharp knife …

…and LOTS of spare time. Then you might just come up with some of these imaginative items ...

A colorful alphabet … A to Z carved from lead.

…or a hanging link one like this …complete with the date and place of origin. Was it 1987 … or 1887?

…or how about intertwining hearts, obviously lovingly carved by a person with a romantic bent…

… who might also have carved this one !

Or my favorite … proving that beauty is in the eye of the beholder!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The 99% pay the real cost of OVERHEAD …

“OVERHEAD is an accounting term that refers to all costs not including or related to direct labor, materials, or administration costs.” (definition by Investopedia)

Well I can understand that and it really doesn’t bother me when it concerns things like the grossly over the top atrium at the Trump Tower in NY City, (pictured here). The people that visit there know that everything will cost a fortune and evidently they don’t mind paying it. I doubt if many are part of the 99%.

What DOES bother me is when it comes to the medical profession. As most of you know I had a hip replacement recently. I went directly from the ER to the operating room and then to a week’s rehab so it was about three weeks before I saw my orthopedic surgeon at his office. When I entered the newly built, state of the art, surgical clinic I was astounded. The entry alone was as large as a ballroom and the vaulted ceilings rose above a 2nd floor of Staff offices. Soft music played and the whole thing made me think that someone was trying to replicate the Taj Mahal in miniature.

I stood there with my mouth agape and I’m sure that the employees thought I was in awe of such splendor. Actually I was coming to grips with the fact that I was helping to pay for this monstrosity.

Why do we need these ornate trappings in our medical offices? Isn’t a sterile environment and a knowledgeable doctor enough for us? Why do we always have to be the biggest and the gaudiest … even, or especially, when it involves healthcare?

Correct me if I’m wrong but I can’t help but think that the major cost of all this splendor (including the astronomical salaries that the Doctors seem to feel is their due) is being put directly on the shoulders of the 99%. No wonder we can't get ahead!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Which road would you take ???

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I …
I took the one less traveled by,
and that has made all the difference”.

Robert Frost, 1874 - 1963

I don’t think these were the roads that Robert Frost had in mind when he wrote those words but it got me to thinking.

I find it a little mind boggling when I look back on the roads I’ve taken and those I chose not to follow. Do you ever wonder where you’d be if you’d taken a different path?

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Look closely … my Turkey Buzzards have returned!

Some of you may remember my infatuation with the huge flock of Turkey buzzards that used to watch over me and my little house. I would often count more than 50 or 60 of them at one time and it always made me feel protected.

I never had to worry about snakes or other rodents, and I loved to watch them leave their perches in the morning. They would seem to slowly shake themselves awake and then, just as slowly, swoop on down and then take off “riding the thermals”, as my son-in-law calls it. But they always circled back at least once, as if to say, “Have a nice day.”

My black-winged friends deserted me three years ago when a developer bought the 50 acres that surround my house and the first thing he did was to take down ALL the huge trees. The few large trees that were left (on my property) were not enough to entice them to return.

I finally accepted that they were gone and I gave up checking the trees at sundown to see if they were there. THEN… just a few days ago my daughter was walking her dogs and she pointed them out to me. I was thrilled and took the picture that I’ve posted here.

Now I‘m wondering how long they‘ve been back with me and I just didn‘t know it. As you can see by the photo they are experts at camouflage and they can sneak in unnoticed. The fact that they make hardly any noise is another reason I could have been fooled.
Regardless of that they are here now and I welcome them “home”.

Friday, February 03, 2012

When you gotta go …you gotta go !!

I’ve traveled Route 95 heading south from North Carolina for many years and these tacky billboard signs line the highway. Don’t you just hate these tourist traps that will go to any lengths to lure you in? I wouldn’t be caught dead in one of these places!

Uh, oh … I’m starting to wish I’d never had that 2nd cup of coffee. Well, surely I can make it to the next Rest Stop AFTER “South of the Border”.

Oh, no… forget what I said about tacky and not being lured in. THIS IS SERIOUS !! I just hope I make it …

…to “South of the Border”. WHEW … what a welcoming sight! Have you ever seen a lovelier place? So low key and enchantingly decorated too. I think I’ll stop in !

¡Muchas gracias mi amigo… usted es mi salvador!