Spending it all on Christmas

When Josh Brolin’s character in Wall Street Money Never Sleeps is asked how much is enough he replies, “More”.  It must have been the Christmas season.  Although we do not openly agree with him, most of us, deep down, wish we had “more” even as we tout how grateful we are.  We talk about the reason for the season, but the truth is Americans plan to spend an average of $700 on Christmas gifts and we all know how those well-planned budgets fail at Christmas time.  The electronic gadgets we crave are guaranteed budget-breakers; my iTouch comes in a close second … Continue reading Spending it all on Christmas

Paris Hilton more popular than Congress

The U.S Congress has hit a new low with a dismal approval rating of 9%, the lowest since the New York Times began tracking it over 30 years ago.  Is it any wonder that Paris Hilton is now more popular than Congress?   Although many of us are perplexed by Ms. Hilton’s fame, even more confusing is what those people up on the hill are doing, or rather not doing for the people they purportedly represent.  Paris’ inane “that’s hot!” ratings of who-cares subjects hold more weight than the President’s, “we can do this” assurances.  I say we cancel their show.  It … Continue reading Paris Hilton more popular than Congress

A local giant says goodbye

Frederick Meijer, the founder of “one-stop-shopping” died on Friday at age 91 after suffering a stroke earlier in the day.  Fred, as he was known in the community, was a free-thinker with common sense values who with the help of his friend Earl Holton built a small empire of Meijer retail stores.  In 1934 Fred’s father Hendrick opened a grocery store in Greenville Michigan at which Fred worked 40 hours a week while attending high school and where he met his wife Lena, who was a clerk.  In 1962 Hendrick and Fred opened the first Meijer Thrifty Acres.  Every child … Continue reading A local giant says goodbye

It’s beginning to look a lot like Wal-Mart

Black Friday even sounds ominous.  Signifying sales that retailers hope will push their profits into the black, it also represents the dark side of Christmas.  A California shopper felt the frenzy of competition when she turned on her fellow shoppers with pepper spray in an L.A. Wal-Mart last night.  That is what the news reported the incident as this morning- competitive shopping.  On any other day pepper spraying a crowd of 20 adults and children would be labeled outright as assault, but in the name of consumerism today it is deemed part of the competition for deals that can only … Continue reading It’s beginning to look a lot like Wal-Mart

Marriage 201 (Prerequisite Marriage 101)

The syllabus for Marriage 201 includes an independent study portion during which the enrollee identifies a specific challenge and develops a plan to address it.  Many of us wish to skip the fundamental lessons of Marriage 101, mistakenly thinking that we do not need it.  It is basic knowledge, after all.  Although the syllabus for Marriage 101 may appear to include sparse enlightenment, these lessons are so difficult that half of the enrollees either drop or fail the course.  There are several variations of Marriage 101, but courses typically contain the following lessons: Another person cannot complete you or fill … Continue reading Marriage 201 (Prerequisite Marriage 101)

Occupy Wall Street “News”

The majority of the 99% watched from our couches and computer desks as the Occupy Everywhere protesters had a very busy and contentious week.  About 50% of the 99% do not agree with or simply do not understand what the Occupy Wall Street movement is all about.  Although we live in an age of information overload, I believe that much of what we are fed is bullshit. If I care about something I have to go to several sources to collect different views and then do background searches on the veracity of stated “facts”.  This is how I know that they feed … Continue reading Occupy Wall Street “News”

ASPCA “Tommy P. Monahan” Kid of the Year

In Tilden, Nebraska last year Stevie Nelson’s two black Labradors went missing two days before his fifth birthday.  Stevie was heartbroken when the Labs were not found despite the best efforts of his family who even hired a pet investigator.  The family and investigator expanded their search to three states and offered a reward, but had no success in finding Stevie’s lost dogs.  This child was understandably heartbroken after his only birthday wish was not granted. As Stevie’s sixth birthday approached he saw the saddest ad on television.  We have all seen it, the Human Society’s plea for donations which includes picture after picture of the saddest looking … Continue reading ASPCA “Tommy P. Monahan” Kid of the Year