BRB…..

I’m MOVING….. are there any questions….

Back next week…..

Enjoy the silence.

Phill(tm)

 

 

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I went to Radio Shack.

Back in the sixties, when a storefront was everything, you went to Radio Shack as a hobbyist, to buy stuff to build stuff, or for odds and ends that no one seemed to stock (sometimes the same thing), and to get a free battery. Yes, they had a club, with a card, you got one free battery a month. Remember when people wanted D’s? Now everybody wants double or triple A’s!

No, I’m not talking about bra size, but you know that’s coming. Remember when big lips were offensive? Now you’ve got everybody in pursuit of Lisa Rinna, ruining their face to obtain a paragon of beauty no one from the opposite sex adores. As for big rear ends… This is still flummoxing women throughout America. Do you want to be J. Lo or Kim K. or should you have a tush as tiny and flat as a boy’s? Looks are fashion. But they don’t sell fashion at Radio Shack.

Then again, they do. The inventory is completely different every time you go there. Well, not quite. I go there once a decade. Ah, the problem of inventory. How do you stock what everybody wants without going out of business from the carrying charges?

And boy is it confusing.

So I go to a computer and access a web site for what I think i want…  And all these major companies have bad websites. They should just hire the guy who did Apple’s and be done with it. Comparing products is a nightmare. Not the chart you get after you click through, but finding where the buttons are, learning after the fact that you can only compare three items at a time. Huh?

The pictures and model numbers don’t match.

Huh?

Simple solution…. Tell you son or daughter what you want and let THEM FIND it….. I’m going back to my book.

 

 

The…. Don’t story

I must admit: Stole this from someone else’s Facebook posting..

Don’t like gay marriages? Don’t get one.

Don’t like cigarettes? Don’t smoke one.

Don’t like abortions? Don’t have one.

Don’t like sex? Don’t do it.

Don’t like drugs? Don’t do them.

Don’t like porn? Don’t watch it

Don’t like alcohol? Don’t drink it.

Don’t like guns? Don’t buy one.

Don’t like your rights taken away?

Then don’t take away someone else’s!

Global Stars

Not like there used to be. Because we don’t have to pay attention, we’ve got options.

Cable TV is gonna crumble. It’s gonna happen overnight. Kinda like the switch from film to digital photography. You remember, we were hearing that digital was coming for a decade, but it didn’t. Then, overnight, digital cameras exploded and film disappeared and Kodak went into the dumper.

What else is gonna go into the dumper?

You’ve got to be damn good to have anything more than a tiny audience today. Don’t employ yesteryear’s paradigm, wherein the public partook of less than quality goods because very little was available. To stand out today, you’ve got to be incredible, you’ve got to make yourself necessary.

And no amount of bloviating about basketball is gonna get me to tune back in. I wasted too much of my life watching Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson in the last century, I’m done.

So why am I still paying for you to watch?

That’s the question.

And I’m not the only one asking it.

Buzz about “Mad Men.”

I know, I know, there’s a ton of buzz about “Mad Men.”

Personally, I’m not a fan, I don’t choose to watch paint dry.

But the big story of the winter is “House Of Cards,” on Netflix. Delivered all at once so people can binge. This is the future. Reruns are done. It’s got to be all new all the time on television or we’re tuning out. Remember waiting for new episodes of “Seinfeld”…that model is toast!

As for “Mad Men,” they sell that at the iTunes Store now. Sure, it might cost a Jackson, but at least you don’t have to pay for all the other stuff you don’t want.

What else don’t you want?

The opening act. Once upon a time you got to the show early, believing there was a reason to pay attention to the opener. Now you know someone paid someone behind the scenes and for your $100 ticket you don’t want to be bored, you’ll arrive for the headliner, thank you.

And it’s newspapers too. What kind of model is that? A surface reading of the news so you can sell advertising? I can get the surface on a zillion sites online, believe me, if someone shoots up a school or Congress grinds to a halt, I don’t need a high-priced reporter to tell me the story. But if I want to go deeper…

That’s what is the future. Deeper. Our whole world has flipped over. Rather than blanding out and trying to reach everybody, today you gain and identify your fans and keep feeding them ad infinitum. Charge them while you’re at it, they’re more than willing to pay.

We can ignore the mainstream quite handily. Once upon a time all we had was Top Forty radio. As for that outlet today, I guarantee at least half of my readership has never heard a Rihanna tune…because they don’t have to! It’s not like they’re at home twiddling their thumbs bored, rather they’re deep down into what they’re interested in, which in today’s information economy is readily available.

And ignore the press. The Netflix backlash? Nobody wants to rent a DVD anymore. Reed Hastings was right. Streaming is not only the future, it’s now. If you don’t make your stuff available for streaming, that just means no one is gonna watch it. Sit there self-satisfied. Like those who insist on charging to hear their music. Huh? You’d better make it easy and cheap or free or feel like free, because very few people are truly interested.

I don’t want to pay for sports.

I’m not talking a trip to The Stadium, or Arena, but I’m not too eager for that either. I wait until one of my well-heeled friends coughs up a courtside seat, otherwise I just stay home and ignore the whole damn thing.

I didn’t used to be this way. I lived for sports.

But then the many sports were free on TV.

People think Napster ruined the music business. What they don’t realize is it was a harbinger of things to come. Turns out most people didn’t want the album. Sorry all you musos making and devouring full length statements. With the advent of the CD, albums became so long, you could have sex, take a shower and call your mother and still have time to take out the garbage before they played through. Then again, no one’s as oblivious as an artist. He sells something no one needs, and deep into his own thought doesn’t realize when he loses his audience’s attention.

Kind of like the music business at large. Humming along on overpriced CDs moved by MTV and as soon as people got the option to download just what they wanted, they gave up on the old model.

Kind of like with TV. My cable bill is insane. Of course I want the high speed Internet, the super high speed I pay for. But all those TV channels? I haven’t got time to watch them. I finally canceled Cinemax and Showtime. But what bugs me is sports. Because I’m paying a ton of money for something I never watch, and so are you.

Well, maybe you’re watching, but everybody with a cable subscription is paying. We’re subsidizing your lifestyle. Against the modern welfare system? Then you should be against the cable TV bundle.

But they tell us if they de-bundle it we’ll pay more!

What a load of hogwash. The truth is sports and niche channels profit handsomely via payments from providers, which are garnered by ripping off subscribers. They just don’t want the gravy train to end. But it’s gonna.

The only place where people buy more than they want is Costco. And they do so because it’s so damn cheap. But all the content industries are charging us a fortune, and as soon as the public gains an option, people bolt.

The Web and…..

The Web has created an economy of connection, which has changed the nature of everyday things: how we communicate with one another, how we listen to music, which books we read, how we choose a restaurant. We are no longer confined to mediocre mass-market products. We have a range of choice, a wealth of information and an immense network. If there were ever a time to give the world something of yourself–a new idea, something you created, something that moves you–this is it.

 Things that were once safe bets–academic degrees, full-time jobs–no longer are. “We think or maybe just hope that security will return after the crisis, but a variety of social and technological trends suggest the world will never be the same. Large companies are no longer dominant. They are no longer the ‘givers’ of employment from cradle to grave; the ‘takers’ will have to make it on their own. And that’s a good thing. For in the new reality, there is a solid appreciation for art, innovation and personal leadership.

Change in the Country

I don’t know what happened to our country. Class is evident everywhere. Hell, not even the upper middle class send their kids to public school anymore. And the religious zealots don’t want to pay for it. And if you go to the public school you oftentimes get a second-rate education. Whereas the privates are all about enrichment and the parents read to their kids and they end up at Ivies and rule the world.

But even if they don’t go to college, the progeny of the rich never slum with the poor. Because income tax rates are so low, and “death taxes” are so low (because we’re saving the theoretical family farm, even though none have ever been lost to inheritance taxes), we’ve got a whole class of nitwits who live like kings with nothing to back it up but their parents’ money.

I know, I know, that’s the American Dream, to get ahead.

But once upon a time, getting ahead meant driving a Cadillac and going on vacation to Florida. Now the rich don’t even fly with the rest of us and the average person has got no idea where they vacation. As for their homes, they’re behind locked gates.


A Better Place

It’s like going to school.

Back in the olden days, when everybody went to public school, except for the privileged few who prepped and the Catholics with their parallel education system, we were all in it together. Nobody had better shoes, nobody flew to Europe for the weekend, we lived in an egalitarian society, everybody was equal.

Those days are through.

But if everybody was forced to take Southwest Airlines, if there were no private jets and no first class, America would become a better place.

It’s such a different vibe. From the people who check you in to the colloquial flight attendants, everybody seems to like their job and to be having fun. Makes me proud to be an American.

Once upon a time Southwest Airlines only flew in the Southwest and was cheaper than its competitors. Now, Southwest can cost top buck. But you still get two bags free, and peanuts and crackers. Hell, they’re not worried about allergies on Southwest. Yup, you few with your peanut phobias made it so the rest of us could never eat nuts at 30,000 feet ever again. That’s modern America. Wherein one person gets to spoil it for everybody. One person gets hurt on the playground? They remove the monkey bars. One person writes a letter to the television network? They cancel the show. That’s what ruined network TV, the lack of edge, which exists on cable. Because the network producers are too afraid to piss anybody off.

And at Southwest someone realized if you print your boarding pass at home, they don’t need to reprint it when you check in. I’ve never figured that out. Why do I need to replace my paper with yours? Why do you need to put it in a little blue jacket? Furthermore, why do I need my ticket once I’m on board? Yup, when you check in at the gate, get on the plane, the attendant takes your boarding pass and never gives it back!


CAREER

Don’t equate YouTube success with a career. Just like those old sitcom stars can’t get arrested (actually, they do, their mugshots are all over the web), YouTube fame is evanescent, here today and gone tomorrow. Just because you’ve got a million views, that does not mean you should drop out of school, you’ll probably never get a million views again.

If you catch fire on YouTube, the whole world is your potential audience. Sure, if you get traction. Bieber broke on YouTube, not in a damp, dark clubs. Today’s culture must know it’s all about being connected. And you connect online. That’s where you start. Offline comes LAST!