Friday, July 31, 2009

Cash for clunkers

Cash for clunkers suspended.

My word, I love stories like this. So the politicians gear themselves up to solve a problem and then fall flat on their faces trying to do so. They put aside a billion bucks for a four month program to get car sales moving. The money runs out in four days.

Just brilliant, don't you think?

Imagine what fun national health care is going to be run by these guys?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Darlene Haynes

Yurk, quite the most disgusting crime. Darlene Haynes has been found dumped in hte closet of her apartment. OK, so far, just another everyday murder.

But Haynes was 8 months pregnant and the baby was cut out of her: no one knows yet pre or post mortem.

Ya gotta be pretty sick to do something like that, cut the baby out of someone. Sheesh.....

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Where to play poker?

Yes, we know, there are puritans in the US political system who insist that it is simply immoral, by their view, that you should play poker. Thus they have foisted their morality upon you and said that you cannot play poker.

Well, sorta, for of course there are myriad places where you can indeed play poker online. The question is, which of them do you want to choose to use? Why not have a look at this PKR Review? They appear to have tables running from the playing for pin money to amounts that scare me.

They also run a system whereby you can get a break at sign up. So have a look at the PKR Bonus by clicking through that link. And you can pick up the PKR Bonus Code there.

Quite simply, there are so many sites out there that you can use it's worth finding out about them and seeing which ones offer you a head start, like those bonuses.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Anabela Janke

Anabela Janke has got herself involved in a very weird little story indeed. She is 42, originally Portuguese but now American and she has a little sideline in appearing in porn movies. OK, that's legal so what?

Well, her husband was the Town Manager of Fort Myers Beach and when the Mayor got ahold of the information about Anabela Janke decided to fire her husband.

Quite what for nobody is really sure: you cannot fire a man for what his wife does in her own time. Expect a lawsuit soon enough.....

The benefits of lead generation

It's a long time since I ran a company actually doing this but then lots of my life is a long time ago. But perhaps worth pointing out again the value of lead generating firms like Blueberry Telemarketing.

The thing about your salesforce is that you hired them because they were good at selling. You know, sitting in front of someone who probably does want your product, or something like it, and is really just waiting to be persuaded to sign on the dotted line.

What you don't want them doing is blindly running around the country trying to find out who might want the product, who might be interested, you want them spending their time purely and solely with qualified leads.

This is where telemarketing comes in. Their staff, the trained professionals on the phone, will first source a reasonable database for you to prospect upon. They'll then clean it, bring it up to date, get names, phone numbers and addresses correct. Then they move on to qualified lead generation: finding the decision makers within the target compaies, seeing if they are in the market at the moment, trying to check budgets and then, perhaps if worthwhile, making the appointment for your salesforce to make direct contact.

In this manner a good telemarketing firm can keep your salesforce where you've trained and are paying them to be: pitching your products to interested and possibly willing buyers full time. Using the right firm is well worth it.

That Stephen Murray crash

I don't know if you've seen it yet but there's a Stephen Murray crash video out there which is really rather disturbing. And no, I don't mean the video of the crash itself (which is disturbing enough) in which Murray broke his neck. No, rather, the video of how he's trying to cope with being quadriplegic and hoping that medical science will advance so that he will be able to walk again (in which he might well be right actually).

But even more is the way in which, in the video at the link, you can see that other BMX riders are, today, taking exactly the same risks he did.....chilling.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Money from blogging

One of the great as yet unanswered questions is how to make money from blogging?

If you ask the gurus, those already doing it, you'll get answers like, well, write great content, start 5 years ago, find a niche: and that's all great but not much use to the rest of us.

Blogging for money is of course something that many of us would like to do and there has to be a better way, an easier way, rather than hoping that we'll be one of the 0.001% who do after years of effort. One possible method is through revenue sharing. The most difficult thing is to build up a large enough reputation that Google and the search engines start paying attention to you.

And that's what you'll get help with if you click through those links. You can blog there, or add your extant blog, and you'll be part of a much larger site, one that the engines do take notice of, and you can then share the revenues generated with the site itself.

Germans at the poolside

One of these little European traditions that has become legend is the practise of Germans reserving the poolside chairs and loungers at the vacation resorts by placing their towels upon them. There seems to be some sort of race for them: up early, get the towel onto the prime real estate and then go back to bed.

It's all rather weird really and it's regularly mocked. However, no longer:

German tourists can now reserve their poolside recliners before they have even left home.

The German arm of Thomas Cook, Europe's second largest travel company, has been deluged with inquiries since announcing that holidaymakers at nine hotels in Turkey, Egypt and the Canary Islands can book recliners in advance for a fee.

Germans are famous around Europe for rising early to reserve recliners near the pool with their towels, and then going back to bed or eating a lengthy breakfast.

Whatever will people think of next?

Friday, July 24, 2009

Where to get your Satellite TV

As capitalism eggs itself on to ever greater heights of choice we the consumer face something of an embarrassing problem: where do we get the information about which is the best choice? Fortunately that's something this blog can help with, at least as far as Satellite TV Deals are concerned.

You'll need to have a look around that site to see what I mean for there are so many different choices (and so many different deals on offer from varied different suppliers) that it's not really possible to precis it all. Just as an example, have a look at Satellite TV Sports Programming and see if that helps you work out which is the best deal for you, in your area, with the sports that you want to watch.

For that's what the site does, helps you to work out the best deal for you....

Naked ploughing

I have to admit that this probably isn't going to take off in any Amish areas any time soon. But I can see that we might be able to make a new reality series out of it anyway. Or maybe:

Farmers in an eastern Indian state have asked their unmarried daughters to plow parched fields naked in a bid to embarrass the weather gods to bring some badly needed monsoon rain, officials said on Thursday.

What do you think? We've got a hit on our hands? Get a few Iowa corn fed girls doing that and we'll hit the top of the ratings?

Or are we simply straining too much to try and create the next hit....although, to be fair, given some of the things they've made reality shows out of, is it possible to strain too much?

Now that Cash for Clunkers is here....

Well, since the Federal Government is offering you up to $4,500 to get rid of your old car and purchase a new one, perhaps it's time to have a look around of what is actually available out there? And rather than racing around all the auto dealer lots, why not simply have a look from the comfort of your own den? That's right, have a look at this car comparison site.

What about the Kia Soul? Or perhaps the 2009 Honda Civic is more your thing? Now it does have to be said that not all cars are included in the cash for clunkers scheme: there's a limitation on price, MPG and even how American they are. So it's worth having a really proper look at all the cars that are available on the market.

Like the Lexus reviews, or the various versions of the Honda Civic. You never know, even without the discount you might find that there's something that's beter value: or better value to you at least, than some piece of Detroit clunkiness.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Britney Spears on tour

Britney Spears is on tour with her latest stage show: Circus. It's, umm, basically, her album, Circus, with a few more tunes thrown in.

As befits someone who is a dancer rather more than a singer, there's much choreography ad little actual singing. But then who was ever going to expect anything else from a Britney Spears show, eh?

The show started out in the US, has moved over to Europe in the early part of the summer and will be back in the US for the latter part of it. Then off to Oz.

Click through the links to see where the shows are: or if you're more like me, where you don't want to be on certain nights.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

More TV options!

There are a number of advantages to the Direct TV offerings. Satellite Directv, for example, offers HD TV. Plus, of course, a digital video recorder service. These are not things which every cable operator offers as a matter of choice, even now.

There is also the point that the Direct TV Satellite service is, as the name implies, delivered by satellite. TYhis means that some of the packages come bundled with satellite radio stations, not just TV channels. This is of course a saving over needing another subscription and expensive box to hear those radio channels.

One or two more things about Direct TV: you get international channels from around the world but you also get full local listings. And of course there are premium movie channels and sports packages to delight the most fevered sports fan.

Why not check out your options by clicking though one of those links?

Give me sunshine

Give me sunshine, give me sunshine,
Make me happy, as I desire...

Or so the remembered lyrics go (perhaps not all that accurately rememberred though).

This can now be replaced with give me sunshne or my money back:

Sun-seekers whose holidays are spoiled by bad weather could be reimbursed after French travel agencies launched insurance cover for unwanted interruptions to the sunshine.

Not a bad idea: although they are talking about pretty high numbrs. You've got to get four days rain in 7 to get the cheque. Hmm....that would mean that absolutely everyone who holidayed in Ireland would get their money, wouldn't it? Wonder if they've thought of that yet.....

Monday, July 13, 2009

What use is a savings account?

We all know that in these troubled times we've got to pay more attention to our money: what's coming in and what's going out. We also know that we've got to make our money work for us, so what actual use is a savings account? The interest paid on them is miniscule, about 1%, and even a high interest account won't make more than 3%. So why bother?

Well, as the very interesting site linked to there points out, there's more to it all than just that. Sure, we're not going to get rich off such low interest payments and it's not where we want to put our retirement savings, for with those we definitely want the power of compounding.

But there are at least two good reason (and click through that link to find more) why we might want such an account. The first is that having a savings account, with a reasonable balance in it, increases our credit score. So we might in fact save interest on loans that we take out as a result. A lower mortgage rate, or credit card rate, as a result of a higher credit score.

The second is that we're all advised to have a few months, perhaps 6, of living expenses readily available just in case something does go wrong. And in these troubled times, of course, something is more likely to go wrong. Two good reasons to find out more, no?

421,000 tonnes of chicken feet?

That's one heck of a lot of chicken feet.

The background is one of those interminable trade wars between the US and China. The US is worried about the quality of some chicken sent to there from China. They're thus restricting imports. However, China also buys some parts of chickens from the US: notably chicken feet. 421,000 tonnes a year to be precise, which is really rather a lot of chicken feet.

That's, umm, $665 dollars per tonne of chicken feet: would you pay that much for that? I think I'd happily pay that much to get rid of a tonne of them.....

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Vacation in Costa Rica

This is an interesting little site. All about Costa Rica resorts. Well, why's that so interesting? Because Costa Rica has just been announced as one of the best places in the world to live. No, really, it has.

The Happy Planet Report measures three things: how happy people are with their lives, how long those lives on average are and how environmentally sustainable the lifestyle is. When you add all of those three things together Costa Rica comes right at the top of all countries.

So the interesting thing is that you can now find out about resorts there, the way that you can test this lifestyle before committing to it.

Drunk as a badger

That's not one of the phrases we normally use, "drunk as a badger". But perhaps we ought to more often, for they do indeed get drunk, as this one in Germany just has done:

A badger in Germany got so drunk on over-ripe cherries it staggered into the middle of a road and refused to budge, police said on Wednesday.

Those over ripe cherries fermented in its belly and gave it not just something of a high but also diarrhea (which another report helpfully pointed out were "studded with cherry stones" and, one must assume, a ripe old hangover.

Not the only animals to get drunk of course, elephants are known to as well: keep out of the way of the hungover elephant is good advice on those safaris.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Shopping for clothes

OK, so we all know tha advantages of shopping for clothes on hte internet rather than at the mall. There's a hugely larger stock of different styles and colours available online. It's also true that prices can be a great deal beeter. And best of all, of course, we don't have to go to the mall.

However, there i a problem. How do we find those hundreds of thousands of different online stores, how do we track down what they have to offer? For that we want to use a comparison engine, rather than a search engine: the latter will help us find what we know is already there but the former is better at telling us of the options.

But comparison engines themselves can have problems. Normally they only contain whatever someone has paid to put into them: that's not exactly unbiased advice then. Which is why ShopWiki is so interesting. They are a combination of a coparison engine and a search one. They tell you about everything but also guide you to what you did know know was there.

Take a look at their clothing for women section, or their fall style guide. They also have a winter style guide and a spring guide as well, of course. It's a new and different way of guiding you to what is available on the web and is worth checking out.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Keeping the passengers attention

So, we're all frequent fliers around here. We'v flown so often that we're asleep by the time they close the doors, let alone when they're doing the safety demonstration, right?

So, what can the airline do to keep our attention? What can they do to make sure that we do indeed learn how to get out of a crashed plane?

Strip off maybe?

Air New Zealand has hit on a novel way to make sure even the most jaded flyers keep their eyes glued on its flight safety briefing.

The national carrier's safety video for domestic services on its Boeing Co 737 planes show pilot and cabin crew dressed only in body paint.

The thing is, there was indeed a time when that might have worked. But I'm not sure's not so much that nudity is no longer unusual, it's that air hostetsses are not chosen for their hotness any more, are they?

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

A great guide to Myrtle Beach

One of the things I like so much about the internet and the web is the way that it opens up so much information to us all. For example, I'm thinking about a trip to Myrtle Beach in hte future and want to find out what the place is like. Sure, I know, golf, watersports and so on, but what about more detail?

And then I find this great online guide. Take a look here for example where they discuss north myrtle beach lodging. That's the sort of level of detail I need.

Great this internet, eh?

Swan upping

Yes, it's that time of year again. It's time to go count the swans.

Quiet please -- Britain's Queen Elizabeth is preparing to have her swans counted.

Buckingham Palace has announced that the annual Swan Upping, a tradition dating back to the 12th century which involves a census of the swan population on the River Thames, will be conducted by the queen's official Swan Marker from July 20-24.

It's a little sad that Reuters can't actually get the title right: she's not "Britain's" Queen. She is Queen of England and Wales and she is also Queen of Scotland: or you can call her the Queen of the United Kingdom....but these are not all the same thing as "Britain".

But it is true that swans are a royal bird: very bad form indeed to try and eat one unless she says you may.

Humming birds migrate?

I had absolutely no idea about this. That humming birds migrate. Their normal range is in Central America but as a result of the last ice age (more specifically, the end of it) they've come to migrate up into the Lower 48 in an expansion of their range. There's not the food supplies to support them year round though, so they migrate back and forth each year.

Simply something I didn't know and had never really thought about.

However, this does lead to a further thought. As they migrate rather than stay put it should be easy to attract them to your garden by feeding them. Have a look at these best hummingbird feeders for some ideas. They sound like a great gift actually: who wouldn't like to have humming birds in the garden in spring and summer?

Breeding your prey

The perfect business would of course be one where you sold a solution to a problem while, on the other side of the fence, you were increasing the problem which you sell the solution to. That way you get people both coming and going. At first glance that's what this mosquito repellent company seems to have been doing. Selling the repellent while allowing mosquitos to breed on the property.


A Sri Lankan court threatened a mosquito repellent factory manager with six months in jail for failing to destroy mosquito breeding areas on company premises to stop the spread of dengue fever, an official said Tuesday.

Sadly, it wasn't the outcome of a brilliant business plan, simply incompetence.

Club Med offers

Time to start thinking about where that winter vacation is going to be, don't you think? Is it going to be the usual boring jumping off a mountain strapped to a couple of boards? Or are you going to be sensible and get away for some much needed winter sunshine and warmth? Quite, put that way the correct decision is simple really. Which brings us to Club Med and their offers.

In fact, click through that link and get more than just the Club Med offers. Get the whole vacation wrapped up in one bundle.

Of course, the basic idea of the villages is that everything is included into the price, right down to the tips. There's no need to carry a wallet (except for a few additional items) so it's all very relaxing indeed. The villages are in great places with great climates meaning that they are again, relaxing. Places like Cancun, the Bahamas, Martinique. Their offers also range from family friendly villages to adult only ones.

Their reputation, plus the care and attention that they lavish upon their offerings, means that you can simply take off and enjoys and relax: which is, after all, what a vacation is really about, right?

More sex please

And now the news that we've all been waiting for. More sex is better for you:

Having sex every day improves the quality of men's sperm and is recommended for couples trying to conceive, according to new research.

Until now doctors have debated whether or not men should refrain from sex for a few days before attempting to conceive with their partner to improve the chance of pregnancy.

So, we've now got a new argument to use. No, it's not that we should wait for the sex to be better when is does arive honey, we've got to have that sex every day so that we can have healthy kids!

The actual reason given sounds sinsible too: that less time waiting to break free means less time exposed to oxygen radicals that can damage the sperm.