Archive for the ‘amazon’ Tag

03-26-2018 My New 21st Century Addiction   2 comments

I haven’ t posted anything since the start of the year and I’m feeling a little guilty.  Having a blog is like having an ungratful child.  It’s a lot of work for which I receive virtually no gratitude.  I especially miss the less than friendly emails received from my more liberal readers.  My life has been empty without their caustic comments and endless political preaching.  I’ve relegated them to a dustly shelf in my mancave where everything that bores me is stored.

Enough of that . . .  On to other matters concerning my newest and least satisfying addiction.  I’ve known for sometime that I have an addictive personality.  As a very young man I had a tremendous taste for beer.  It got me into some trouble in my teens and I had to finally let it go. No more of that nasty brew.  Then in my twenties I turned my attention to cigarettes and the occasion toke of giggle weed.  Both of which hung on until my thirites when I saw the light and quit smoking everything.  No more happiness weed and no more cigarettes.  I got healthy, hit the gym, and finally (according to my mother) turned myself into a beautiful and productive person.

As the years rolled along I ended my addiction to marriage and lived a rather raucous and crazy few years filled with wine women and song.  Yes I’d finally discovered a taste for wine and women but no matter what I did I couldn’t carry a tune. As is usual the combination of wine and women got me into considerable trouble as well. I finally met, fell in love, and settled down with the love-of-my-life, stopped drinking wine and turned instead to brandy.

The next to go was the damn brandy. While I enjoyed the brandy drinking experience it was rather boring and I had to stop. I hate spending that kind of money on alcohol that tastes great but I get no glow.  No glow means you got to go and it did.  So currently I’ve reduced my addictions to just three.  My woman is here to stay, thats #1, and thank god for a continuous supply of Jack Daniels (thats #2).  I’ve limited myself to just two or three Jack & Pepsi’s a week (and maybe a few more if we have visitors). Things seem to be working out perfectly almost . . .

My last remaining addiction is without a doubt the worst.  I’ve rid myself of a major television addiction 2 years ago when I could no longer stand watching 10 minutes of commercials every half hour. I told Dish Network to cancel my account and signed up immediately with Netflix and Amazon for streaming service.  Unfortuneately streaming is a double-edged sword.  Being generous I estimate that both streaming services are 80% crap and only 20% of their movies are worth watching unless you want to pay a fee.  My newest and worst addiction is to this endless supply of  terrible, crappy, and ridiculous movies.

                                             SOMEONE PLEASE HELP ME

I’m in dire need of some sort of 12 step program to get me away from this TV.  My greatest fear these days is that my better-half will find me alone in the dark, slumped over in my favorite chair, clutching the remote.  Dead from dehydration, boredom, and felony eye-slaughter.

 

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10-25-2015 Journal – I’m a Streaming Fool!   Leave a comment

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I’ve been accused on any number of occasions by any number of people of being impatient.  Not just a little impatient but brutally so.  Over the years it’s become less of a problem but in my younger days it was truly a bitch to deal with me. I wished on many occasions that I could loosen up enough to keep myself from going a little bonkers but it was difficult.

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I was reasonably successful in most of my career endeavors and while impatience kept me focused and motivated it tended to irritate and annoy many others. Procrastination in others was my second biggest complaint and those that reported directly to me paid a price if they were so inclined. I have no regrets about those years to be sure but even today procrastination makes me a wee bit crazy.

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Over the years my impatience has prompted many posting on multiple blogs concerning the over use of advertisements on TV and just about everywhere else.  It made most forms of entertainment difficult for me to watch because of all of those annoying interruptions and distractions.  Then my prayers were finally answered . . . . . . Netflix.

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Watching television or movies and having total control is something that takes a little getting used to.  No more sitting and waiting for shows to begin, no constant interruptions with stupid ads, and the ability to pause the show and return at my convenience. It’s freaking awesome. I also subscribe to Amazon which is very similar to Netflix in some ways and is money well spent in my opinion. 

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Unfortunately I use the ROKU service to connect my televisions to the Internet and most of their extra services and channels are filled with ads causing me not to often use them.  ROKU provides an excellent gateway for streaming but paying them additional fees for programming and movies over and above the cost of their devices remains annoying. My ever present impatience with anyone who insists on trying to remove money from my wallet keeps me looking for better alternatives every day. 

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Being free from the clutches of cable TV now makes changing companies very easy too.  No more contracts, everything is month-to-month, and more vendor possibilities are being created almost weekly. If a company is dumb enough not to cater to their customers then I will move on to someone who does. For a change we the consumers finally have a modicum of control over our costs and time like never before.

Hooray for us!

10-03-2015 Journal–A Really Early Holiday Message!   Leave a comment

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‘This is written with my tongue lodged firmly in my cheek.’

Where did our Summer go?  It seems like just a short time ago we were complaining about the heat and humidity and WHAM, all of a sudden we’re rolling into October and looking down the tunnel at that proverbial bright light approaching at seventy miles an hour. That light is the damn holiday season quietly sneaking up on us. It’s October for God’s sake. Doesn’t anyone care that it just too damn early to be worrying about the holidays.  Stop the madness people. 

I was in Lowe’s yesterday visiting my better-half who was tied up with a number of other employees doing their Christmas reset. Just shoot me now, please. What the hell are they thinking.

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These retailers claim they start their seasonal BS  early because of the huge demand for their holiday products.  Honestly, when was the last time you ever heard anyone . . . that’s ANYONE say they were happy about seeing the Christmas season starting in early October.  Never!!  The truth of the matter is that the demand is created by the retailers themselves who lower their prices just enough to entice customers to the store.  They can be so disingenuous at times it makes me crazy. It just goes to show you how stupid they think we the shopping public are.  And sadly they’re right!

I refuse to be manipulated anymore.  No early holiday nonsense for me, no Black Friday idiocy, and no paying attention to the thousands of emails that will be clogging my mailbox over the next ten weeks.  I’m done with it. 

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I plan on spending exactly fifteen minutes on Christmas shopping this year  and thank God for Amazon. A five minute walk-in at Toys R Us for two gift cards, a five minute walk-in at Home Depot for one gift card, and finally five minutes to order seven additional gift cards from Amazon. That leaves just a few gifts I need to purchase for my better-half which will be ordered on-line as well and shipped directly to our house.

Stick those gift cards in an envelope with a Christmas card and a short note and you’re DONE.  No more stress, no more purchases of gifts that no one really wants or appreciates. Get your gift cards in the mail, buy what you want, and leave  me alone.  I never intend to spend more than an hour on Christmas preparations ever again. 

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I’m only asking Santa Clause for Amazon or Kindle gift cards this year since I’ve been very, very good. I’ve spent too many years getting clothing I hate and would never dare to wear, smiling and lying about how much I liked that fruit cake I received, and all of the required traveling around the countryside in terrible weather to visit people. I’m sorry folks, it’s nothing personal, but in my opinion if you’ve seen one Christmas tree you’ve seen them.  So here is my collective seasons greetings for most of you in case I forget later.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

HAPPY HANUKKAH

HAPPY STUPID KWANSA

HAPPY SEINFELD FESTIVAS

MERRY CHRISTMAS

HAPPY NEW YEAR

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I’m exhausted already from just listing all of this foolishness.  I wish I could just go find a cave and hibernate until February 15.  It would make for one of the best holiday seasons ever if I could.

BAH HUMBUG

07-19-2015 Journal–Down With Cable TV!   Leave a comment

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It’s a gray day once again after having a few days of bright sunshine. The better-half is at work and the cat and I are doing as little as possible.  Over the last few days I’ve been spending time familiarizing myself with Netflix.  It was a little cumbersome at first but it didn’t take long to get the hang of it. I was told by a long time Netflix user the danger of “binge watching” and I thought she was kidding.  She wasn’t! I now can see just how that can happen because its happening to me already.

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As I’ve posted in the recent past, I’m preparing to finally disconnect myself from cable TV once and for all.  I’m sick of the continuously rising costs and the hundreds of channels of garbage programming I’m forced to pay for.

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I’m making the most of this Netflix free trial for the next month and the more I use it the better I’m liking it. I’ll be signing up for HULU Plus and their free trial next week to checkout the the TV shows they offer.  If I’m satisfied with HULU  I’ll be terminating my Dish cable service early in August. It’s been a long time coming and I can’t wait.

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I think I’ll be doing a little shopping tomorrow at Best Buy. I need one additional ROKU device to adapt my last TV to video streaming. The costs for these devices are minuscule compared to the amount I’ll be saving each month. I just love having extra money in my pocket instead of theirs.

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I should have no problem getting through the winter months this year with lots of books to read, a huge selection of TV programming, and more movies than I could ever watch.

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It’s time for me to return to my desktop computer, my laptop, iPad, smart phone, and TV because I can now video stream on all of them.  I’m deep into the storyline of the series, Marco Polo, with five episodes remaining. Then I can begin watching episodes of an old TV series, The Finder, one of my all-time favorites. It’s back and I’ve got it. 

Add to that a bottle of good Sangria, a bag of tortilla chips, and a quart of my salsa and I’m in heaven.  I’ll also be saving $645.00 in the first year that will pay for my annual car insurance, a year’s supply of cat food, and the occasional bottle of brandy. It can’t get much better than that.

08-06-2013   Leave a comment

I thought a little humor might be nice with Hump Day approaching.  I just heard on the news that yesterday Amazon purchased the Washington Post newspaper for two hundred million dollars.  I thought Amazon as a company was a lot smarter than that.  Newspapers are failing all over the country with their readership moving steadily to on-line sources but maybe they know something I don’t (which is likely) and I wish them a lot of luck.

That newspaper story got me thinking about how inept many newspapers have become since their hay-day.  Stories faked, pictures Photo Shopped, and numerous grammatical and spelling errors becoming a regular feature. With that in mind here are a few headlines from actual newspapers that couldn’t be more ridiculous or funny.  I hope none of the newspaper associates responsible for these headlines end up working for Amazon. 

  • Two Convicts Evade Noose, Jury Hung
  • Queen Mary Having Bottom Scraped
  • NJ judge to Rule on Nude Beach
  • Smokers are Productive, But Death Cuts Efficiency
  • Nicaragua Sets Goal to Wipe Out Literacy
  • Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
  • Grandmother of Eight Makes Hole in One
  • William Kelly was Fed Secretary
  • Farmer Bill Dies in House
  • Iraqi Head Seeks Arms

How ‘s that for ten samples of really terrible professional editing.  I can’t believe these headlines actually made the published newspapers but they did. Here are a few more:

  • Miners Refuse to Work After Death
  • War Dims Hope for Peace
  • Blind Woman Gets New Kidney From Dad She Hasn’t Seen in Years
  • Man is Fatally Slain
  • Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Experts Say
  • Eye Drops Off Shelf
  • Enraged Cow Injures Farmer With Ax
  • Child’s Stool Great for Use in Garden
  • Prostitutes Appeal to Pope
  • Panda Mating Fails – Veterinarian Takes Over

The hits just keep on coming and there seems to be an almost endless supply of these carelessly thought out headlines.  All of the available journalism training these days seems to be more concerned with creating another Watergate than spelling properly or just making good old common sense.

  • Autos Killing 110 a Day, Let’s Resolve to Do Better
  • Stiff Opposition Expected to Graveyard Plan
  • Lack Of Brains Hinders Research
  • Policeman Help Dog Bite Victim
  • Man Denies He Committed Suicide
  • Four Battered In Fish And Chip Shop
  • Goldfish Is Saved From Drowning
  • Prisoners Escape After Execution
  • No Cause Of Death Determined For Beheading Victim
  • Jury Suspects Foul Play In Death Of Man Shot, Burned & Buried In Shallow Grave

I can’t continue with this any longer.  The more I read the crazier it makes me.  If I had submitted things like this to my high school English teacher, Ms. Walters, she would have rolled it up and smacked me across the head with it.  Maybe that’s the kind of thing missing from our current journalism schools.

11-26-2012   4 comments

First we had Black Friday and the week long barrage of advertisements that preceded it.  The bombardment was brutal as always and made it virtually impossible for me to comfortably watch TV, listen to the radio, or read my emails.  Spam was worse than usual on the net and there was just no let up.  Some time Friday afternoon I expected some relief when the end of Black Friday was in sight.  Wrong! Visiting a few stores during that week was a huge disappointment for me too.  In years past the Christmas holiday really didn’t take off until the weekend following Black Friday, but no more.  For example, Lowes was setting Christmas displays two weeks before Black Friday and  I can only assume they were following the example set by the Big Daddy retailer, Walmart.  I was already sick of the Christmas season in late September with their  slashed prices, great deals, giveaways, and enough coupons mailed to kill off a large forest. It was just plain stupid but I was certain it would soon decline in frequency.  Wrong again.

I wake up bright and early on Sunday and the barrage had changed focus.  It’s now the beginning of the ramp up to Cyber Monday.  I wonder what genius thought up that pain-in-the-ass promotion.  Chances are good it was a combination of people from  Best Buy, Apple, and of course Amazon.  My mail box was suddenly filled anew with another round of nonsense.  The old Circuit City brand that closed it’s retail establishments five years ago is now alive and well as an internet business and returned once more to bother me.  Prices were being  lowered again and again with the drumbeat continuing on both television and radio.  I was forced to abandon electronic media for a day or two and just sit quietly and read a good book. 

Monday arrived and again I was hoping for a reprieve from the advertising onslaught  with the end of the Cyber Monday debacle.  Wrong again.  Late Monday I began hearing a new phrase being bandied about, Cyber Week!  These effing people are relentless in their need to make most of us as miserable and brainwashed as possible. Maybe next year November can become Cyber Month and Christmas resets can begin in August. This country is on advertising overload and has been for quite some time.   I recall a time when cable TV was first introduced and they called it Pay TV.  We were assured that with the advent of cable we could watch television commercial-free for just a small monthly payment.  That claim lasted about a week before they began to clog the new cable airways with ads and began jacking up the monthly fee.   

I sat with a stop watch one evening earlier this year and decided to determine how much time was spent on actual TV programming.  In a standard one half hour sitcom we’re being force-fed  approximately ten minutes of boring, annoying, and stupid advertisements.  That means for a two hour movie special we are fed forty minutes of ads.  It won’t be long before what used to be an hour special will become a three and a half hour advertising fiasco.  When will it end?  I think the answer to  that would be “Never”. 

We aren’t permitted any ad free  time to sit and think about anything but spend, spend, spend.  Walmart seems to be the trend setter in all things retail and it doesn’t take long for Target, Best Buy, and all of the others to follow suit.  Walmart is constantly in our face on TV and upon arrival at their stores you’ll find endless numbers of signs posted everywhere.  You enter the building and there are signs for the Donut Shop, Pharmacy, Bank, Eyeglasses, Beauty Shop and even Nail Salons.  The entire building is covered in signs for just about every product they carry.  Their latest and greatest devices to drive me crazy  are those little LCD screens located on end-caps that activate as you approach.  Another sales pitch for some bullshit useless product I didn’t want to begin with.  My first introduction to those little devices scared the crap out of me as I was walking along minding my own business and all of a sudden I have a female voice bellowing at  me  to buy some stupid product I really didn’t need.  Criminally annoying.

My rant is over for now.  The problem  with all of these advertisements is two fold.  First, they seem to work which gives the companies incentive to continue using them and second, it gives them the power to manipulate large numbers of the population to do their bidding.  As always my bitch about the Media in general is their constant attempts to control not only politics in this country but everything else as well.  If that doesn’t give you pause and scare you a little then we’ve already lost the battle.

I’m leaving now because I feel the need to scream and then run to Walmart and buy something stupid. Merry Effing Christmas!