So, the Ides of March has passed!

I don't know if I wasn't paying attention in school or if my memory's going or both! [I'm betting on the latter]

Have you ever wondered from where some sayings come?

I was surfing the net [which, I haven't done in a while] and saw the saying "Beware the Ides of March" I remember hearing or reading the saying over years [oops, I'm telling my age] and wondered from where it came. Now I remember [after I went and looked it up]!

Beware the Ides of March is the name of the date March 15th in the Roman calendar. The what else I didn't know: the Ides is also the name of the 15th day of May, July, and October and the name of the 13th day of the other eight months.

In modern times [ I guess 44 BC is considered modern] Ides of March is best known as the date Julius Caesar was assassinated and is now used as a metaphor for impending doom.

Okay, so this is boring...whatever! It got me titillated! Yo! Caesar you died in my birthday month!

Beware The Ides of that March is leaving like a lamb!

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Accomodating Muslims -- Harvard

Let's not forget what's happened in France with their Muslim accommodations and the problems that it has caused that country.

But really, will a request for gym hours cause a problem? I don't think so.

I saw this on the Early Morning show:Harvard tries women-only gym hours.

Although, I find nothing wrong with a women's only gym hours, this experiment at Harvard makes me wonder what Harvard's reaction would be if the women requesting this change were other than Muslim?

Let's say that the women who were making the request were Christians, would Harvard be as accommodating? Don't count on it, I believe America is turning into an anti-Christian country and any request by Christians would be suspect in non-Christian minds.

So, why placate another religious group, just to be politically correct. There we go again, with that phrase, words I am learning to detest.

Daily Free Press -- The Independent Student Newspaper at Boston University:

"We live together in one community, it only makes sense for everyone to
compromise slightly in order for everyone to live happily," she said.
"This matter is simple: Can't we just display basic decency and show
tolerance and inclusion for people not a part of the mainstream
Read More

My thoughts to this quote: Sure we can live happily, if compromise goes both ways and all groups are given equal latitude. But, so far as I've seen, everyone is going over-board placating Muslims and their beliefs, while telling the rest of us where we can stick our nonsensical beliefs. So...what gives!

I went on to read some reactions to this Harvard tidbit and found a plethora of responses, read them here

Personally, I feel that there's nothing wrong with having a women's only gym hour. And in this particular case the women requesting the change happened to be what -- another group of religious or non-religious women had or have the same opportunity to make such requests.

From what I understand the women requesting the change are requesting it for all women not just Muslims or religious women.

Some people are afraid that this is the Muslim first step in trying to integrate Sharia law into the United States. No, that won't happen, why-- (1) there'd be another American civil war if anyone tried it. (2) Sharia law is only upheld in some Muslim countries and most escaped to America to get out from under this oppression.

Now, if we wind up having a Governor, or Mayor, or Senator, or [guffaw] President wanting to implement something or anything resembling Muslim Sharia law, to accommodate Muslims...THEN there would be a big, big problem.

But these gym hour requests, no, I believe it's innocent and will benefit different Harvard women.

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A, B, C, D,...I'm so confused!

Goes to show you, medicine is not an exact's a hit, miss, try this, try that science. We still need to take a little alphabetized pill to be healthy!

I suffer from an autoimmune disease named Sjogrens Syndrome. This is an autoimmune disorder that's first cousin to Lupus and, at times, mimics Multiple Sclerosis and Rheumatoid Arthritis.

In essence, what Sjogrens Syndrome does, it tricks the body into attacking itself. Yes, that's about as simple and as plain as I understand it and can explain it.

In my case, Sjogrens [in the past] has made my body think that my heart, liver, kidneys and pancreas were foreign invaders and attacked them. In fact, my body attacked them so well...they almost shut down...permanently.

Some people equate Sjogrens with just being a dry eye and dry mouth disease, I'm here to tell you it isn't! But, I digress;

last month I went to my Gynecologist. She's one of those modern-thinking doctors, who believes that having the right amount of nutrients in the body, can and does ward off some of these modern day ills that seem to plague today's society.

She ordered some blood tests suspecting that I may be vitamin D deficient. She went on to say that vitamin D deficiency is a quiet epidemic in America and that many diseases could be warded off if people had enough of this vitamin, and the others, playing sentinel within our bodies.

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble substance that dissolves in and can be stored by fat deposits in the body and functions as a classic steroid hormone. [See, men! Ya'll don't have to take synthetic steroids, your body makes its own!]

The presence of vitamin D in the small intestine aids in the absorption of dietary calcium. Read More...

If you have a B deficiency, scientist say you're anemic. If you don't get enough C you can easily catch a cold and other little baddies. If you don't have enough A your eyes can be get the picture.

Now, if you are D deficient, your bones are at risk. You can be more susceptible to a variety
of cancers, weak bones [D helps your bones absorb calcium] or different autoimmune diseases.

Well, of course when my tests came back they showed that my body produces no vitamin D what so ever...NONE! As a matter of fact, I was on the negative side of their scale.

My Doctor believes that this could be one reason why I'm in a lot of pain and, why I have the autoimmune diseases that I do.

Taking the vitamin supplements will help ease my conditions [supposedly] but, won't cure anything; the damage has been done.

My thoughts: if society has progressed so much, why have they/we wiped out most of the nutrients in our foods? Progression means to get better not worse -- so I thought.

Look at our kids! We've got all these kids running around with ADHD [Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder] making them wild, wild, wild! [I know from experience, I have a son diagnosed with this disorder] The medical community suspects that food or the dyes in food could be a factor.

Our food intake has become a detriment. Now, what we eat no longer builds better bodies, and minds we're poisoning ourselves and producing children who insist on swinging from the rings of Saturn and orbiting Pluto.

We shouldn't have to take little pills labeled A,B,C,D,E along with our food in order to be healthy.

I hope the Green movement isn't too late, we all may start glowing in the dark!

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YaHell!...Oops my bad...YaHoo!

I've been with Yahoo since I became a computer and internet toddler.

Originally I started out with MSN and didn't like their search techniques. I've had AOL, let's just say with AOL, I felt like an internet captive.

So, I went over with Yahoo and liked the freeness of the big red Y! Soon, those feelings began to change. Now, I refer Yahoo! to YaHell!

Let me preface this by saying, no, I'm not a computer genius or a programing guru, I'm one of the millions of casual users who doesn't like complete and total make-over of services.

My dissatisfaction with Yahoo began when they changed the clubs into groups. The Yahoo Clubs were great and user friendly. The groups, though Yahoo says they're more technologically superior, have a more sanitized feel to them -- not homey like the clubs.

But, like everyone else I rolled with the punches and created a couple of Yahoo Groups. After having a few groups for the last couple of years, I find I still miss the homeyness of the Yahoo Clubs.

What sent me into the black hole of YaHell, is when Yahoo changed their simple message boards into their present quagmire. I can't easily find the boards I frequented, I can't easily follow the conversations, they've made something pleasantly simple into a maze that even the best rat can't find its way around.

Now, YaHell has let its 360 blog flush itself down the porcelain throne. Yahoo is not and will not update or fix bugs with 360. They're just letting it go!

No there's no official word that 360 will be shut down but, if you follow Yahoo's track record it's a safe bet that it will.

My question is: why, why, why! Yahoo has thousands and thousands of people who blog with 360. Some of these people are paying customers. Where's their responsibility to them?

I was a paying customer for a couple of years but I stopped. Now, I'm telling you, I hate YaHell! They've aborted the ease and homeyness for which I left MSN and AOL: frankly it pisses me off!

Yahoo can't seem to leave well enough alone. I understand progress and change but, does change always have to involve complete over-hauls? Why can't they just tweak or nip and tuck here and there. Why face-lift things until they're unrecognizable?

Now, YaHell is working on Y!Mash their new social network. This service includes features common to Facebook, MySpace, and My Yahoo. You'll be able to load a set of modules onto your profile page and move them around drag-and-drop style. Read More

Well, la-de-da! That's just great! Once the majority of the 360 people start using this new social network, YaHell will get an attack of dissociative personality disorder and change it too!

It's not that I think Yahoo services are bad, it's that I absolutely, hate the way they get Dr. Frankenstein on their customers. They take bits and pieces of program flesh and mold them into another monster which later down the road, they have to rebuild.

I didn't know Yahoo was sued for human rights violations in China! Go figure! Read more about Yahoo, the company and its trials and tribulations here

I think YaHell needs a prescription for Lithium, or Prozac, or Welbutrin, SOMETHING to even out their flip-flop programing disorder. They're giving me a headache.

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Hello...Females aren't equipped with a penis!

Warning: Various language included, may insult some sensibilities.

This morning, I was surfing Blog Catalog and came across this delightful blog Ringtailed Squealers

It's one of those blogs that has a plethora of subjects: thoughts, rants, cartoons whatever the blogger feels like blogging.

What caught my attention was her post to spammers. I had just finished grumbling to myself about my YaHell! in-box and all the spam it's littered with. Then, low and behold, I came across her post at Ringtail voicing the same disdain.

I can almost understand [I said,
ALMOST] the porn spam, they're advertising some type of service [guffaw!] however, I don't understand spammers who bulk send a penile enlargement advertisement to women and boob boosting ads to men.

Come on! if you look at my e-mail address, you can tell I'm a female. Last time I looked, I wasn't equipped with a third leg, there's no bat or balls attached any where on my body!

Yet, my YaHell! in-box is regurgitating penile enlargement ads!

I've got the spam filter set so that it sends junk mail to bulk Hades but, occasionally, an imp wanting me to grow a 10 inch appendage between my legs slips through.

What's with these people! The spammers I mean.

They can read,
can't they? Well then again maybe not.

I notice that some of the porn spam subject lines has the alphabet but, they make no rhyme or reason unless, they want you to practice pronouncing
x k y z.

I don't understand spam. Think about it, spam is an advertisement. An advertisement is announcing to the world your services...right?

So, how do these spammers get paid. I shudder to think that there are that many people in cyberspace who utilize these services.

There's legislation to stop spammers. ISPs want to do away with them -- spammers are costing them money and bandwidth. Then, what's the appeal?

Wikipedia states:

The California legislature found that spam cost United States organizations alone more than $13 billion in 2007, including lost productivity and the additional equipment, software, and manpower needed to combat the problem.

Spam's direct effects include the consumption of computer and network resources and the cost in human time and attention of dismissing unwanted messages. In addition, spam has costs stemming from the kinds of spam messages sent, from the ways spammers send them, and from the arms race between spammers and those who try to stop or control spam.

I just don't understand the spammer's mindset. They can't possibly be getting wealthy. If some are getting rich, there aren't
that many who've found the windfall.

Look penis spammers, this is the way it is...

  1. I don't or won't ever grow a penis.
  2. My man is quite content with what he's got
  3. If I don't have a man, I'll buy a toy and extra "C" batteries
  4. If I want your services [which I don't ] I'll e-mail you
Okay, okay,

Thank you!

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No, I'm NOT going to SHUT UP!

What's with people and differing views? Especially, when differing views involve politics and religion.

Is there some Magna Carta written, stating that a person can or should, only voice opinion[s] when they're absolutely, unequivocally, sure said opinion[s], won't offend someone [anyone] -- somehow, somewhere, anywhere on this plane of existence ?

Are we suppose to put a sock in it, out of fear of being called intolerant, bigoted and discriminatory? Come on!

Get a life! Hell NO! I AM NOT going to shut up.

I guess you're wondering what I'm rambling and ranting about. I made a comment at the Gorilla Sushi blog on "Why Islam is Anti-American. "

My opinion brought on the ire of the author/writer Jason. I'm sure Jason is a nice young man. Maybe a tad bit idealistic and quite disillusioned with religion. So what, he's not the first, nor will he be the last, upright-walking, talking organism that find themselves disappointed or disillusioned with the human race. Welcome to adulthood!

I wrote that I disagreed with his stance on American fears of Islam. He claims that most of us who don't like Islam are: ignorant, ill-informed, undereducated, brainwashed, bigots. I took exception to that! [who'd a thought]

In essence, my comment was: not all of us listen to or take stock in, what the media says or writes. We know the media has bias. We know most media is in some one's pocket.

My contention [to him]: stop underestimating the intelligence of the American people.

Not all of Americans get their knowledge while sitting on a couch hung between two trees watching t.v. Nor do our lips move when reading stop signs. We're cognitive beings! We know how to research and form intelligent conclusions.

What irked me most, the accusation that I was unpatriotic. Me, a disabled veteran who proudly served the United States of America -- me! Not only am I a vet, I'm an old school vet, I probably was in the Middle East before Jason was an itch in his daddy's pants. Not only do I have the inalienable right of free speech, I earned the right of free speech.

I don't know if our lack of understanding each other is generational or not. But I find that the younger generation is quicker to call people intolerant and bigoted when someone voices a dissenting view.

Hello! This is America, we're allowed to say what we believe and believe what we say. You don't have to like it however, you do have to get over it.

Just because someone says or writes something negative [in this case against Islam] doesn't mean the writer is bigoted or discriminatory.

This old schooler views bigotry and discrimination as active. Meaning, someone will physically stop you or hurt you in some manner.

Because I write that I don't like Islam and give my reasons why, doesn't mean I'm going to go out and hurt a Muslim. This doesn't mean I'm calling for Muslims to be banished from American soil. This doesn't mean, if I meet a Muslim I'll be rude and say something cruel. Muslims are people like you and me. There are good Muslims and bad.

I know about bigotry, I know what it's like not to be waited on in a restaurant. I know what it's like to be fired from a job so, someone of another race or ethnicity can have my position. So, no, I wouldn't commit these actions against someone else just because I don't like their religion.

Here is an example of Jason's and my exchange:

"What do you think happens if one of their family members decides Islam isn't for them?"

I don't know - send them to Jesus Camp? Perform an exorcism?

"Hey, what happened when someone like you decided to make fun of Muhammad in a cartoon?"

A few death threats and some temporary boycotts. Same thing that happens when people make fun of Jesus...or teach evolution. And that's not even a crime sometimes.

"free speech hindering people like you!"

If I'm hindering free speech, why am I allowing you to comment on my blog? Would I be able to come to your blog, spouting off my own propaganda and not get deleted? I wouldn't do that however, because I don't preach my views and try to push them on others without provocation.

"I've got more patriotism in my little finger"

Then why are you trash talking other religions on the internet? Don't all Americans deserve the right to practice whatever religion they want without persecution? Freedom of religion is a universal human right - whether you agree with their customs or not. I'm not saying that you don't have the right to discriminate against muslims I'm just saying that your hate-speech is counter productive to the evolution of human culture.

"don't call me a bigot because I have different views"

I'm not. I'm calling you a bigot because you're a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance. <-that's the definition of "bigot" "grant free speech to a select few" What?? I do not have the power to either grant or deny free speech. Speak all you want but just be aware that the educated, patriotic and disillusioned will always be around the corner, waiting to counteract your jibberish.And here is the rest of it. From our Internet encounter, I get the feeling this youngster has delusions of grandeur and is a legend within his own mind. Whatever! His views will change over the course of his life time. Things will change over the course of his life time, I hope he rolls with the punches.

If anything, remember this: "You must stand for something or you'll fall for anything" and that, dear friends, is a promise life won't break.

Who Smelled What...get a sense of humor!

Yesterday, I found this interesting debate going on in one of the BlogCatalog communities.

It seems that in the Go! Smell the Flowers blog[that's the name of a sub community in BlogCatalog] two of it's contributors quit because they didn't like what was being written in some of the posts by other contributors.

Go! [for short] is a multinational blog created to be uplifting and inspirational. Now, there's thorns rising from some non-rose-like flowers [flowers, that's what they call their members...I think].

It seems that some didn't find this satirical letter too funny. I guess most complaints or negative remarks were from people of the United States.

My thoughts: Where is your sense of humor, people! This is satire! Yes, it's humorous. I love satire, I love sarcasm. Satire and sarcasm are art forms not easily mastered. So, Get over it and give the Brit a hand [clap, clap, clap] it was funny, no, not gut-wrenching-roll-on-the-floor-pee-my-pants funny but, the sides of my mouth lifted towards the ceiling.

Question: Why do people take what's written in an online community to heart? Come on people! Freedom of speech isn't limited to the United States. Isn't Democracy what we Americans are always thumping our chests about? Isn't Democracy the reason why we've spread our military thin, thin like the bald spot Donald Trump hides under that horrendous rug on his head. So, what's the beef!

Laugh a little...right now, start laughing -- are you laughing...I can't h e a r you!

If you want to read more, click the link below.

Go Smell The Flowers! » Go! Reposses the US of A
A Message from John Cleese

To the citizens of the United States of America:

In light of your failure to nominate competent candidates for
President of the USA and thus to govern yourselves, we hereby give
notice of the revocation of your independence, effective immediately.

Her Sovereign Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will resume monarchical duties
over all states, commonwealths, and territories (except Kansas, which
she does not fancy).

Your new prime minister, Gordon Brown, will appoint a governor for
America without the need for further elections.

Congress and the Senate will be disbanded.

A questionnaire may be circulated next year to determine whether any of
you noticed.

To aid in the transition to a British Crown Dependency, the following
rules are introduced with immediate effect:

You should look up ‘revocation’ in the Oxford English Dictionary.

1. Then look up aluminium, and check the pronunciation guide. You will
be amazed at just how wrongly you have been pronouncing it.

2. The letter ‘U’ will be reinstated in words such as ‘favour’ and
‘neighbour.’ Likewise, you will learn to spell ‘doughnut’ without
skipping half the letters, and the suffix -ize will be replaced by the
suffix -ise.

Generally, you will be expected to raise your vocabulary to acceptable
levels. (look up ‘vocabulary’).

3. Using the same twenty-seven words interspersed with filler noises
such as ‘like’ and ‘you know’ is an unacceptable and inefficient form
of communication.

There is no such thing as US English. We will let Microsoft know on
your behalf. The Microsoft spell-checker will be adjusted to take
account of the reinstated letter ‘u’ and the elimination of -ize. You
will re-learn your original national anthem, God Save The Queen.

4. July 4th will no longer be celebrated as a holiday.

5. You will learn to resolve personal issues without using guns,
lawyers, or therapists. The fact that you need so many lawyers and
therapists shows that you’re not adult enough to be independent.

Guns should only be handled by adults. If you’re not adult enough to
sort things out without suing someone or speaking to a therapist then
you’re not grown up enough to handle a gun.

You can read more of this at the link posted above.

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Call God Allah...NO!, NO!, NO!

Has anybody ever heard of self-preservation? What is with people who want to conform or dismantle their belief system just to make other people happy. That's a crock of crap!

I usually don't blog/write about religion but, I found this snippet on Livejournal. "A proposal by a Roman Catholic bishop in the Netherlands recommends that people of all faiths refer to God as Allah"

Researching the article I found it on fox news dot com: [August 2007] reports: that Tiny Muskens [what a name!] an outgoing bishop who is retiring in a few weeks from the southern diocese of Breda, said God doesn't care what his called.

"Allah is a very beautiful word for God. Shouldn't we all say that from now on we will name God Allah?"

Ibrahim Hooper, a spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Washington, D.C. based Islamic civil liberties and advocacy group, backs the idea as a way to help interfaith understanding.

My thoughts on the subject -- how about NO!, NO!, NO! I don't care how beautiful the phonetics sound to the ear N.O.!

I've not written or hinted on this blog, my thoughts on Islam but, there's always a first time, looks like this is it.

Religion and politics are both volatile subjects. Everyone has their own ideas of what should be the correct ideology to follow and everyone believes that their way is the right way.

I don't like Islam. No, I don't think that all Muslims are terrorists, the majority are peace loving people. I don't like one major tenant of their faith, that Jesus Christ was a mere man, a prophet like their Muhammad. That alone, doesn't set well with me, as a matter of fact, that doesn't set with me at ALL!

Now, some bishop [one who's walking out the door, mind you] wants to play nice-nice and suggest that all faiths call God Allah. This rankles me to the bone. No, that word/name won't come out of my mouth. Why, doesn't political correctness EVER work the other way?

Mr. Hooper, since you back this idea -- supposedly, to help bridge the gap of interfaith misunderstandings -- why don't you suggest that all MUSLIMS start calling Allah God.

Let's go further than that -- why don't you call for all Muslims to stop saying that Christians worship more than one God? Especially, here in western nations [the United States] where the country's majority religion is Christian.

No, we aren't going to start calling God Allah!

If you're a Muslim and live and reap the benefits of the free western world and want interfaith understanding and tolerance... well, when in Rome do what the Romans do...

You've come to our house we didn't come to yours. When you come into my actual house and sit on my furniture or walk across my carpet, my rules are supreme not yours.

Those of us in the west who are NOT Muslim and do not subscribe to Islamic ideology, DO NOT call or refer to God as Allah.

**Just give up everything you believe in and stand for, go ahead, make others happy. I absolutely HATE political correctness, I really do!**

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Seriously, Who CARES!

Is this a stupid title for a web site or what!

I've touched on this subject before and I'm going to grouch about it again!
WHO cares that JLo had twins! I like Jennifer Lopez -- don't get me wrong but, SO what! she popped out twins! To me that means she had double the pain that I had and will have double the pain when they get older.

Another story at this blog talks about is Brad and Angelina on vacation with their kids. Okay, so...

Again, don't get me wrong I like Brad and Angelina as a matter of fact I'm a huge fan of them both. They both have my respect for all the wonderful humanitarian work that they do. Brad is just fabulous down in New Orleans. He's doing more than the government has done! Oops, did I say that!

Although I think that it's wonderful that they adopt children, I think it would be even more wonderful if they'd spend that hard earned money and time adopting children that are in THIS country.
Yes, indeed we've got black kids, white kids, Hispanic kids etc... who need adopting right here...don't we or am I on another plain of existence!

So, what's with these celebs, always going to other countries and adopting those kids?

Even Madonna, with her nasty self, tried adopting an African child. Okay, Donna, go down to the local children's home, you'll find plenty of kids from all races and ethnicities waiting and hoping to be adopted. And please, don't just look at the cute cuddly little babies, there are some older kids who need adopting too.

Now, back to what I'm really ranting about.

This web site is called Seriously OMG! WTF! -- that's exactly what I say -- OMG! WTF! Why does this web site have as big of a following that it does? I'm not jealous, well, not really that jealous, I'm just not understanding why people are so interested in a poorly written web site. On technorati, this site has a 621 authority and the author[s] can't write worth a hill of beans.

No, I admit that my syntax isn't the greatest and I can be judgmental [guffaw] at times but, what's with all the celebrity fascination? JLo and Angelina both adopted and/or got pregnant the same way the rest of us did/do [I do envy Angelina being married to Brad] so what's with all the hype?

I'll say it again...America, get your priorities straight...would you please do that...PLEASE!


Thought for today:

I'm still on the subject of blogging, just can't get it out of my mind.

This thought: how many blogs do you author? and why?

Me, I author three blogs, I guess to satisfy my three different moods or personalities. WANDERER'S NOOK
is my poetry blog. I love poetry, I view poetry as a jig-saw puzzle. Piecing together my thoughts in similes and metaphors is a challenge. This month I'm focusing on Black-American poets in honor of Black-History month.

So far, I've only posted one Renaissance poet [Langston Hughes] on this site. I find it ashame, that the Harlem Renaissance was cut short due to WWI. So many works by gifted painters, writers, and poets were lost in the smoke.

My second blog is this one, Voice-A-Thought. When I feel like rambling on about any and everything, I come here and start typing away.

My newest blog is ADHD -- A Mother's Diary
This blog is a diary/memory blog focusing on raising a child with ADHD [attention deficit hyperactivity disorder] Here I hope to add some insight and help others who have children or know of people who have children with this disorder.

I'm also focusing on Adult ADHD, my son is now grown but, terribly suffers from this brain-short circuit. ADHD can affect social and work relationships.

My first two blogs are with Blogger my third is with Wordpress since there are different blogging sites that offer different services I thought I'd try a different one for my last blog. Frankly, I'm not sure which I prefer. I'm not a blogging pro so, I chose what was easiest.

Which platform is more preferred? There's been plenty blogged about this subject. From my favorite blog, Problogger, Darren Rowse wrote: This post talks readers through some of the issues that they need to think through regarding choosing a blog platform.
  • ‘Which Blog Platform Should I use?’
  • ‘Should I use a free blog or get my own hosted blog on my own Domain? Which Blog Platform is best?’
  • ‘What are the Pros and Cons of going with Typepad instead of WordPress as a blog platform?’
  • ‘Should I start out on a free Blogging Platform and Upgrade later?’

These are just some of the typical questions that I get asked each day from bloggers starting out and attempting to make a decision on which blogging platform or tool they should choose. Read More

He's the pro so I listen and read every word he says. He ran a poll on his website on what platforms blogger use to blog. [not to be confused with the free wordpress] was the most popular. Blogger [go blogger!] came in second. Read More

Which, blogging platform bloggers use depends on why they're blogging. Businesses tend to use the pay platforms and people like me, who want to write for babbling sake, use the free platforms.

What ever your blogging purpose is...BLOG ON!

So...What do you blog about?

My thought for today:

What is it that bloggers blog about? Bloggers blog about EVERYTHING!

Most blogs are about business or are how-to blogs and are quite useful. But, I'm wondering what drives bloggers, like me, [those of us who aren't advertising products of services] to enter the blogsphere.

In my case, I vent frustrations. I blog to take my mind off of what's going on around me. Blogging is a great stress reliever for me.

When my muse is on hiatus, I write on this blog Voice-A-Thought. I groan and moan about what's going on in the news or what I've read on a blog I've come across in cyberspace.

When I'm feeling artistic or when my muse has decided to come visit me for a while, I write poetry and post them on my poetry blog WANDERERS NOOK

I've found that many blogs are written by professional writers. Their blogs are an easy way to advertise their writing. When I come across some of their blogs, I'm reminded of how far I have to go in order to become a good or proficient writer.

There are so many types of blogs and blog lingo:


What really is amazing is that they have blog search engines. Technorati is now tracking more than 112 million blogs. Read more about blogging at Wikipedia

My favorite blogs, other than my own, are the photoblogs. Some of these photographers take such stunning pictures. It takes a good eye to capture some of these photographic moments. One of my favorite photoblogs is by Gale Rainwater [even the name is artistic] There are stunning photographs on this blog.

Also, I like the blogs that teach you how to blog or how to make money blogging. My favorite how-to blog is ProBlogger

There are so many great blogs on the net, it's hard to pick a few unless one stands out in your mind.

It doesn't matter how many readers you have reading your blog [that's for those of us who aren't advertising a product or service] even if you're the only one reading it, blog anyway. Blogging can be a catharsis and will soothe your mind.

So, instead of punching a hole in the wall, or beating someone to a pulp, blog! The most important person reading your rant is you.

Say what you mean and mean what you say!

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We in the north too, can have charm and hospitality.

This is my thought for the day.

Earlier this week, I was talking to a good friend. She told me that she's had enough of the cold uncaring hospitality from the people in our cold northern city and is planning on moving down south, where the friendliness of people is as inviting as freshed baked bread with home churned butter swimming on its top.

This thought made me think, why isn't northern hospitality as inviting as the "good 'ol South's?"

For those of you who live in the northern states, think about it, are you really that friendly to strangers? When you're walking down the street do you look a stranger in the eye and say "good morning or afternoon or evening?" Or, do you avert your gaze as not to speak? Why is that?

Don't get me wrong, I'm a Northerner and I'm guilty of not being friendly. I can be as cold as the outside on this February morning, where the snow has put all warmth in a deep, deep sleep. I'm wondering why are we like that.

Does it really hurt if I say good morning to a complete stranger I walk by on a busy street? He or she, won't jump my bones out in public so, what's the harm in bestowing a nice smile, and a nod of the head?

I did a little digging on the subject, [yes, you know I did] and I found some references on Southern hospitality. In Wikipedia: Southern hospitality -- in 1835 Jacob Abbot wrote that southern hospitality was so abundant that the local taverns were of poor quality because they weren't needed by travelers. A stranger could go up to a home and would be greeted. If he was considered to be a gentleman, he would be invited to share a meal and a stay over night. Read More... Can anyone honestly, see something like that happening in this day and age?

I understand why my friend wants to move south. In this big city where we live, if you speak to someone walking along the street, you might get jumped on. You certainly, wouldn't invite a stranger into your house for a meal or to stay over night , you might not wake up in the morning.

So, how do we, here in the north, get some of that southern charm? Well, frankly, I'm not sure how but, I do know where to start. The next time I'm walking down the street and I see a stranger, I'm going to say "good morning, have a nice day" maybe that feeling of niceness will pass on and on and... Or when you go to the store or the gas station, walk up to the clerk and smile and say good morning before they do.

And for crying-out-loud, walk around with a smile, or at least a look of contentment, your face won't break, I promise!

For anybody reading this: Good Morning! I hope you have a great day"

It's no one's fault but your own...

If you're not happy!

That's right! Don't blame it on circumstances, blame unhappiness on how you react to the circumstance.

Stuff happens and you can't stop it, so, roll with the punches or as my favorite saying says -- be like a duck in water, let it roll off your back.

I found this article on USA Today this morning, and it made me think. It's true, unhappiness depends on the how the individual rationalizes their circumstances and shouldn't be dictated by what's going on around us.

Again, my Granny was right, happiness isn't or shouldn't be defined by how deep your pockets or pocketbook is. Or, which Monet or Picasso you've got hanging on your walls. Or [God forbid, this makes my stomach turn] what Mink or Chinchilla coats you have hanging in your closets. You can be happy if you're living in a one bedroom house with a velvet painting of dogs playing poker on the wall.

Psychologists now believe that they know what makes people truly happy. In USA Today, dated 12/8/2002, a story was written about what makes people happy, truly happy. No, not these faux pas living mannequins, who walk around with botox induced smiles carving their faces but, real deep down inside happy people:

Psychologists now know what makes people happy by Marilyn Elias USA Today -- The happiest people surround themselves with family and friends, don't care about keeping up with the Joneses next door, loose themselves in daily activities, and most important, easily forgive. Read More...

The article goes on to further say that people who are most happy are the ones that spend the least time alone. My take on being alone may disagree with this thought. I personally love and crave solitude. Sure, I like being around friends and family but, when it's time to be alone, I want to be alone. I don't like my solitude invaded.

What really caught my interest, was the thought that materialism is toxic to happiness, with that, I couldn't agree more. I mean, think about it, the more material things a person has the more they want. Materialism is like a fly caught in a web, it struggles and struggles for the materialistic things until the materialism spider creeps down sucks out all the happiness.

This was a great article. I didn't agree with everything the writer mentioned but, on the whole, it's very true. Happiness comes from within not from everything going on around you.

Yes, it's great having family and friends but, I don't like having them stuck to the side of me like they have velcro arms. If you don't have as many family or friends that you'd like, get a dog or a cat or both. I've got both along with family and friends, they make life complete. That feeling of completeness is what makes me happy.

These babies make me smile!

How to survive Super Bowl Sunday

Super Bowl Sunday is becoming the most dreaded Sunday of the year. Sorry to all you football fans out there but, not everyone in America or the world for that matter, finds the sport of football fascinating.

What the rest of the us see when, we see a football game, is a bunch of big grown men, [I mean, big, big, BIG... gargantuan] grown men, pretending how to count -- all the while scratching, grunting and patting each other on the butt after, they've smashed some other guy's face in the ground. I mean really... is it THAT fascinating!

Well, maybe it's fascinating for the scratch and grunt club but, the rest of us...uh-- NO!

These are the best 10 ways to survive SBS [Super Bowl Sunday]

1. If you're one of those ladies or gents who doesn't have the word N-O in your vocabulary, and you're having a get together for the game, get everything done first thing in the morning. Have all the chips, dips, chicken wings, beer, bug juice, fizzy stuff -- EVERYTHING done right after you get up then you won't have to worry about it later.

Once the game starts, that's YOUR time. Learn the word NO! Tell the arm-chair quarterbacks not to ask you for anything, or call your name. Remind them that they have two hands and they can get what ever else they need.

2. Assuming you have more than one television in the house -- rent 3 movies. Rent what YOU like [if you have kids and like kid's movies rent 2 for them and 1 for you. By the time the kids second movie is over it's their bedtime and you can enjoy the last movie in peace.

3. If you're an avid reader, no time like the present to pick up the book you've been putting off. Put some ear plugs in, settle back in your favorite recliner and jump into the authors mind.

4. Get together with a bunch of non-football friends and have a card party or a book club meeting or go to bingo.

5. Get out and go to a movie, time it just when the game comes on.

6. Do your hair or give yourself a facial or give yourself a manicure or pedicure [yeah, metro-sexual men do that too]

7. Check the T.V. listings to see if there's a Murder She Wrote, Law and Order, The Closer, etc... marathon showing on another channel.

8. If you're a Church goer, go to an evening service, afterward, go to a restaurant for a snack [sit as far away from the bar as you can...they'll have the game on]

9. If you have a hobby [knitting, painting, sculpting] do it.

10. Get on the computer and go to your favorite online journal or your own website and write about how to survive Super Bowl Sunday!

Understanding Black History Month

'T Was mercy brought me from my pagan land, Taught my benighted soul to understand That there's a God--that there's a Saviour too: Once I redemption neither sought nor knew. Some view our sable race with scornful eye-- 'Their color is a diabolic dye.' Remember, Christians, Negroes black as Cain May be refined, and join the angelic train. --Phillis Wheatley

Phillis Wheatley

Black History Month is not just about celebrating famous Black-Americans. This is a month, set aside, to educate Blacks about their own history. I've heard some non-Blacks ask, "why must there be a Black History Month?" The answer is quite simple, because conventional history texts have historically omitted Black facts.

When growing up, the only references made about Blacks in our high school history books, were about Blacks rioting in the streets during the civil rights movement and giving no explanation as to what the movement was truly about.

There were pictures littered through history texts of, Blacks living in tenements with broken-out windows, bald yards and ripped up couches on the balconies. Or not so charming shots of Blacks living in one room shanties with an out house in the back. Finally, someone had the fore-thought to say enough is enough, "this is not the whole truth of Black history" or being black.

Not many high school history text,[to my recollection] mentioned the educated and well rounded Black-Americans. Nor did they mention that some, who were slaves were geniuses, like Phillis Wheatley -- poet and writer. Others were either born free or freed like, Benjamin Banneker -- a self-taught intellectual or Edward Alexander Bouchet -- physicist, chemist, just to name a few.

Black youths need to know that there were people of their race who found that books and education were a positive aspect of life and not something that poisoned them.

Phillis Wheatley [my favorite historical figure] was captured from the Senegal-Gambia region of Africa when seven years old. When brought to America, she was sold to the Wheatley's. Within sixteen months, after arriving in America, Phillis had learned how to read and write English. She didn't stop there, she also, studied Latin and Greek and became the first Black-American poet. Read More

Benjamin Banneker, taught himself astronomy and was able to accurately predict a solar eclipse in 1789. Read More

Edward Alexander Bouchet was the first Black-American to graduate from Yale (1874).

Benjamin Bradley developed a steam engine for a warship in the 1840s.

David Crosthwait, Jr. held numerous patents relating to heat transfer, ventilation and air conditioning.

The literary world's pages are full of accomplished Black-Americans, not missing a dotted "i" or a crossed "t" to name a few [in no particular alphabetical or chronological order]: Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison, Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen, Paul Lawrence Dunbar, Zora Neale Hurston, Gwendolyn Brooks, the list goes on.

Not only does America's Black youth need to understand and embrace Black accomplishments but, the rest of the country does too. The only way is to learn of and learn from Black history. This is why we have Black History Month. Black accomplishments aren't just on the basketball court or the football field or in the recording studio. The world is and can be the Black-American's canvass and our brains are the palettes that create beauty and contributes to mankind's betterment.

Do You Know?

Who invented the traffic light? Yes the one you stop at or run through on the street. Did you say Garret Morgan?

Who invented an important part of the light bulb? Did you say Lewis Latimer [he created the carbon filament]

Who invented an oil dripping cup for trains? Did you say Elijah McCoy? [Other inventors tried to copy McCoy's oil-dripping cup. But none of the other cups worked as well as his, so customers started asking for "the real McCoy." That's where the expression comes from.]

Who invented the ironing board? Did you say Sarah Boone? Read More: list of Black inventors

Don't get scammed by fraudulent schemes

This may sound strange coming from me but, I don't know who to feel more sorry for, the people who fall for the get-rich-quick schemes or those who perpetrate the scam. Why entertain the thought of feeling sorry for the schemers, well, what frame of mind must one be in, to think up such an awful ideology and bring upon their fellow human beings.

To most of us it isn't rocket science [my favorite term] when it comes to fraud. But, there's a segment of society that has a problem with having too much "blind faith"

Being the pessimist that I am, I trust nothing or no one; if someone tells me that the sun is out, I'll go look for myself to make sure it's true.

I wish more people would have a small part of my pessimism, it would save some people money, especially senior citizens who fail prey to these bottom-feeding miscreants who have no problem taking what little money they have.

The first thing that should always come to mind when receiving an e-mail, or a phone call, or a letter through snail-mail, concerning "free money" is, nothing is free.

E-mail scams:

Lottery winnings--e-mails claiming you've won a lottery you've never entered.

Bank verification notices -- unsolicited emails requesting you click on a link to verify your personal information. [No authentic bank does this]

Free vacations -- e-mails claiming you've won a free vacation in a contest you've never entered.

Extortion e-mails -- e-mails that contain personally identifiable information that might differentiate your e-mail from the general e-mail spam campaign. These e-mails suggest threats of violence. CALL THE POLICE!

Snail Mail scams:

Telemarketing [yes, under snail mail] -- when you receive a postcard of letter describing an appealing offer. To take advantage of that offer you must call a 900 number of toll-free 800 number. When you call, the telemarketer has a convincing sales pitch.

Illegal Sweepstakes Information -- sweepstakes must follow certain laws and if they don't they are illegal. Read More

Chain Letters -- A chain letter is a "get rich quick" scheme that promises you that your mail box will soon be stuffed full of cash if you decide to participate.

Government Look-a-like Mail -- A brown official looking envelope in your mail. It looks like government mail but isn't, it's usually a sweepstakes solicitation.

Home Improvement and Home Repair Fraud -- If someone mails you a brochure offering to do an expensive job for a much lesser price and requests that you pay in advance.

Phony Inheritance Scam -- A notice that you've received an inheritance from a long-lost relative you've never met. [you've never met them before because they ain't your relative]

Receipt of Unsolicited Merchandise -- If you receive a pen or key chain or a tie you didn't order, don't feel guilty! The company is banking on you being the type of person to feel guilty and will call to offer and pay for it. It's yours, don't feel guilty and don't call, keep it!

Prison Pen Pal Money Order Scam -- No brainer folks! If you know of no one in prison then why send them money. If you are one of those lonely ladies out there, just be aware that there's a mail fraud where prisoners write you attempting to gain your trust then, BAM! they ask for money.

Fraudulent Health and Medical Products -- Mainly aimed at senior citizens. Key words to watch out for "instant cure for arthritis," "loose weight without effort," "grow hair fast," "look years younger" Don't fall for it! Read More

There are more scams out there and the list grows by the day. The best rule of thumb to go by is if it sounds to good to be true then, it isn't. Short-cuts aren't always best sometimes they can get you lost in a bog that you will have a hard time of getting out.

If you have a senior citizen in the family or know of a senior citizen please, keep an eye on them and talk to them. Many seniors think they know of good deals when they hear or see one.

For more information on other fraudulent schemes please, visit the following websites U.S Postal Inspections

and the FBI

Why does ethnicity matter?

Yesterday, I wrote an article on the logic of the terms African-American or Black-American. In the beginning of the article I wrote a little about the 2008 elections and whether or not America is ready for a Black-American for President.

We, as a race, aren't mature enough to be human. This is why I don't believe that America is ready for a Black-American as President.

Now, Barrak Obama has won the endorsement of America's most powerful, yet depleted family, the Kennedys. Senator Kennedy has given his backing to Senator Obama which, has given Obama momentum going into the "Super Tuesday" elections.

Now, let's look at Senator Kennedy's reasoning for disassociating his endorsements from the Clinton camp. The Kennedy patriarch claims that Mr. Obama would represent a break "and turn the page on the old politics of misrepresentation and distortion" and close the book on old politics of race against race, ethnic group against ethnic group, gender against gender and straight against gay" Read More

One can only hope these dreams come into fruition. But, reality speaks differently to us common folk. We, who aren't politically savvy, have always been under the impression that demonizing political opponents was the back-bone of running for any office and that dreams are on the wings of a persons mind...they tend to fly away.

We've always understood that one opponent points out how and why the other opponent is less capable of the holding the office each is hoping for. The levels of these so-called demonetizations, depends on the content of each political camps internal character.

Now, I asked myself, what could the Clintons have done to upset Senator Kennedy. Further on, in the TimesOnline article, was written that "Kennedy was repulsed by Mr. Clinton's alleged use of racial politics in the past fortnight"

Are they kidding! What political race doesn't use racial politics? Someone out there show me one campaign that doesn't have any racial undertones. Face it people, all politics has racial politics regardless of how overt or covert they are, it's still there.

Every politician has spoken to a Black group, a Hispanic group, or a White group. Let's not forget gender politics either, Womens groups are being courted too.

Obama has received his share of bad headlines also -- (CNN) January 29, 2008 -- Obama: I didn't snub Clinton.Read More...

You know, I believe that these news reports are a pain in where I sit. Some of these reporters take something innocent and paint it into an abstract that Picasso would admire.

In my finite mind, the ethnicity or gender of a President shouldn't matter. Expertise, knowledge and plans for what's best for American citizens should be all that counts when deciding who to elect for a President.

I'm a pessimist, I don't believe this country is ready for a Black-American as President. I know, the numbers are looking good for Barrak Obama right now, he's giving Hilary what-for in the polls.

This is what I think about, I think about those people who lurk along the back roads of Texas, like gnomes in cupboard, who think its fun to chain and drag a Black man from a truck down a rural road.

Or I think about those people, who like to take boards and fashion them [with care] to look like a cross then, cover them with sheets and douse them with something flammable then, stick it in someones yard and set a torch to it.

What's worse than these fore mentioned people...their apologists.

You know, the people who actually wouldn't do these things but, will come up with excuses as to why they were done. I can't picture these closed-closet righteous and well-meaning [guffaw] people, voting for a Black-American whose name sounds so, Islamic...can you?

They're out there folks...they ARE out there!

Technorati Tags: 2008 elections, Black-American, racial politics

Powered by ScribeFire.And here is the rest of it.

Still...A Nation Full of Disgrace!

Whether you agree with the war or not, the treatment of our Military personnel and Veterans is not and should not be up for debate or a second thought.

I know, this is old news for some of you but, it's a continuing saga for Veterans and newly made Veterans. The need to keep this blight, this disgrace, of our Nation in the fore front of every American mind which, is tantamount for the national security and continuing strength of America.

George Washington had it right [and was prophetic] when he said:

"the willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive how the veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by their nation" -- President George Washington.

Washington was prophetic in this quote. There are less high school graduates enlisting in the Army. Why, well your guess is as good as mine. Could it be because of the treatment of this nation's Veterans and/or this very unpopular war? I believe it's both.

[AP] Stars and Stripes online edition:

Washington -- The percentage of Army recruits with a high school diploma has dropped last year, continuing a trend that has worsened since the Iraq war, according to a report released on Tuesday. Read More...

These kids aren't stupid. They see what's going on. Some are probably thinking who in their right mind would go to a war and be shot at. Or, they could be thinking why go to a war just to come home and be treated like a pariah. They don't want to become homeless and have to fight with their own government for benefits.

November 7, 2007 Washington (CNN) -- More than 25 percent of the homeless population in the United States are military veterans, although they present 11 percent of the civilian adult population, according to a new report.

On any given night last year, nearly 196,000 veterans slept on the street, in a shelter or transitional housing, the study of Homelessness Research Institute found. "Veterans make up a disproportionate share of homeless people" the report said. This is true despite the fact that veterans are better educated, more likely to be employed and have a lower poverty rate than the general population.

As Americans, we do have the right to protest [thank you First Amendment]. Protest against bills passed by the Senate, Wars, even protest against God if the sky is to blue [not that I would ever think of doing such a thing] but, when protesting a war people should never take it out on Military personnel or a Veteran.

When my son was in the military and stationed down at Lackland Air Force base, he was downtown for R and R. He was standing outside of a restaurant [while in uniform] when someone ran up to him and called him a "baby killer", another G.I. was spit upon.

These young men have never left foot from this country and by no means have killed anyone. Yet idiot war protesters target them to vent their frustration and anger against of government, who looks upon G.I.'s as expendable. What's done to a G.I. on the home front, rolls off the backs of those in Washington pulling the strings. Where do you think the acronym G.I. comes from? It means "government issue" which boils down to meaning "expendable."

War is a cruel, hard reality of life. Even in the Bible [whether you believe in the Bible or not] God said that there would be wars. In war people die, people who, like you and me, would prefer that all the killing would stop and everyone would live and let live.

But, when it comes to this country's Vets, active duty or not, we should be thanking them. Everyone in this country should be relieved that there are men and women who would stop and put their lives on the line for you and yours and not think twice about it.

"A veteran -- whether active duty, retired, national guard, or reserve -- is someone who, at one point in his or her life, wrote a blank check made payable to The "United States of America", for an amount of 'up to and including' my life." [Author Unknown]

For those of you who still can't or won't get the picture:
**If you can't stand behind the troops, at least stand in front of them!"
you might not like the feeling.

Here are some websites that may be of interest to Veterans and/or their loved ones:

Department of Veterans Affairs

Veterans Benefit Administration

Disabled American Veterans

Veterans of Foreign Wars

Military News

Veterans News Hour

Soldiers' Angels

Veterans' Sources Archives


Stars and Stripes

Veterans Benefit Network

Veterans Political Arena

US Military Veterans List

Veterans Group Directory

Vets Helping Vets

**Support a Vet or don't ask them to support you**

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Telemarketers, you walk a thin line.

It's been a long day and you've just sat down to dinner when, the phone rings, [tingle, tingle] and this friendly upbeat, saccharine sweet voice asks for Mr, or Mrs. Smith...and you blow-up! I know I do.

It's someone who wants your money, someone has just invaded your privacy! I don't know about you but, I'm tired of this practice.

Don't fall for phone trickery or be seduced by some fast talking, smooth sounding phone trickster. Most of the time consumers find out that the product and/or service is not up to what was expected.

In my mind telemarketing practices are out of hand. There are some that are legitimate or should I say well meaning but on the whole they are all a pain in the butt.

There are two major categories of telemarketing; Business-to-business and Business-to-customer.

There are subcategories of telemarketing:

* Lead Generation, the gather of information: I rate them annoying
* Sales, using persuasion to sell a product or service: I rate them obnoxiously, annoying
* Outbound, proactive marketing in which prospective and preexisting customers are contacted directly: they are the same as sales and I rate them the same
* Inbound, reactive reception of incoming orders and requests for information. Demand is generally created by advertising, publicity or the efforts of outside salespeople: I rate them as GREAT (when I/we want service or information we call them and ask them what we want to know -- it's their job!) Read more...

On average, I dare say, quite LOUDLY, LEAD GENERATORS, SALES, OUTBOUND telemarketers-- "you've worn out your welcome!"

The majority of the public has no problem with inbound telemarketing. Why they term it inbound is beyond me, this is more like customer service and has less negative connotation. On the other hand the majority of us like it when "we" call them to ask about their services or else we wouldn't do it. However, I'd say that we, the public, DO have a problem with telemarketing outbound calling practices.

I know, I know, people must work. The way the economy is today, people must take any job they can get. I was a telemarketer at one time, [business-to-business and business-to-customer] for over ten years as a matter of fact. I know the inside scoop of the industry and frankly, some of their practices bothered what little moral sensibilities I have left.

When I think of telemarketing (Lead Generation, Sales, Outbound) the words trickery or trickster, always pops up in my mind. Yes, that's a nice way of saying LIAR!

Don't get me wrong the actual person who does the calling, isn't the one who's made up the lie or the trick. These callers are given scripts that they must follow. I was told to follow the script verbatim and if I didn't I'd would get a ding on my weekly report. Yes, these calls are monitored and recorded.

These people are pressured with quotas and the threat of termination. If they work in a call center, they have managers running up and down the isles, yelling and screaming to come on and get the sale. These call centers have taken micromanaging to another level. So, don't blame it on the person who calls, look to the manager, the owner or the higher-ups who come up with these tactics.

I use the word trickery or trickster not so much for the telemarketers who are calling to sell a product or service. Even though I do question them too. These words are for the those who are calling for charitable organizations, alumni associations and political parties. No, the actual organization itself isn't being tricky, however, the company that they hired to do their calling is questionable.

Yes, absolutely, donate to your favorite organization but, not through a telemarketer (sorry, guy and gal telemarketers) Because there's a third party involved in collecting the money.

An investigation on the fund raising for the Disabled Veterans Association (DVA) not to be confused with the DAV (Disabled American Veterans), has upset a great many people in the Cleveland Ohio area.

Notice how similar the acronyms are -- DAV and DVA ....

It's been found that only 13% of the monies collected for the DVA actually go to the Vets. So, where's the other, let's see....87% go? Someone is pocketing that money, now who is it?

November 6, 2007 Newsnet5 -- Investigation: 13 Cents of Every $1 Donated Goes to Charity

Cleveland-- A 5 On Your Side investigation revealed that a group raising millions of dollars for veterans, only gives them 13 cents of every dollar donated. Investigator Ron Regan uncovered who's getting rich off the donations that were supposed to be helping American Veterans. Read more

I reiterate, it isn't the actual person who's calling that's perpetrating the falsehood, it's the higher-ups who don't and won't get their hands dirty but all the while are lining their pockets to build their multi-million dollar homes. Again, be careful who and how you donate your hard earned money. It's best to go directly to the organization and bypass all third parties.

Also, for those of you who don't know. Charities, alumni and political organizations are under 501(c)3, non-profit organizations. Their financial books are for public eyes. If you're suspicious of an organization, tell them you want to see their books -- that's your right.

In 1991 Congress actually listened to consumers (stop it! I'm having a heart-attack) and granted consumers certain rights to defend themselves against these annoying telemarketing calls, yes, you all are annoying! Congress wrote an anti-telemarketing script. This is a script of questions, we consumers can ask the unwanted caller, here they are:

* Are you calling to sell me something?
* Can you tell me your name?
* Can you tell me your company name? (not the company that you're calling for)
* Do they have a do not call list?
* Can you put me on the do not call list?

If they answer no to any of those questions the consumer can legally sue them. Read More...

Isn't that great! Now, how does that work for bill collectors? I'm going to research that and find out!

Of course businesses that own or utilize telemarketers are fighting back with the contention that their free speech is violated under these new rules:

First Amendment Center: Advertising and the First Amendment By David Hudson Jr. Telemarketing presents a classic clash between privacy and freedom of speech. Many residents believe telemarketing calls invade their privacy. Business owners counter that telemarketing is a lawful way to inform people about their services, and regulations violate their First Amendment free-speech rights. Read More...

These are my solutions to dealing with telemarketers, [ I'm cantankerous and this might not sit well with those of you who are moral and etiquette purists]

* ask them: "Did I ask you to call me"
* ask them: "Did I give you permission to call me"
* ask them: "Why are you on my phone"
* ask them: "What's your home or cell phone number and I'll call you back"
* If you have a hold button, put them on hold and leave them there
* Do like the businesses, get a gatekeeper, in the private sector this would be caller id and/or privacy manager
* If you have caller id and the words "unknown or unavailable shows, this usually means a telemarketer or a bill collector-- don't answer the phone if you don't want to talk to them
* If you have a whistle blow it into the phone
* Yell at them until they hang up then, call them back and yell some more, call over and over and over and...
* Just hang up

These people have invaded your privacy and your home, it's okay to be rude, really it is! You don't have to use every four letter word in the book to be rude, using sarcasm is wonderful. I love sarcasm, it's an art form which I've learn to master.

As a former telemarketer, I've heard it all and understand where the consumer is coming from. I began to resent the brain storming, educated idiots, who came up with these harassing strategies. They get paid huge bucks, while the people who are doing the work and having their heads handed back to them on the proverbial platter, get paid very little in comparison. Yes, I know, that's the name of the game in commerce. And that, dear reader[s], is why I quit.

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African-American or Black-American which term is logical?

With Presidential election 2008 looming on the horizon, history has already been made. Barak Obama is the first Black-American, yes, I said Black-American, to have made it to the primaries.

I'd even dare say, that he's the first Black-American to win South Carolina's Democratic primary. South Carolina! The very state where slave ships docked and unloaded their human cargo. Those 'ol slave runners and slave owners, buried on South Carolina soil, must be turning over in their graves questioning the worms.

But, I digress, I'm not going to write about the 2008 elections or whether or not America is ready for a Black-American as President -- Read more... [for the record, no I don't think America is ready, we haven't matured enough].

I am going to write about which term is more logical, African-American or Black-American.

There are many treatise written on where the term African-American comes from. Back in the late seventeen hundreds the term African-American was used to denote the more elite Blacks. During the great war Northern Blacks were called Black Yankees. Suffice it to say, you can go back a long way and find the different ways the terms were used.

In the seventeen hundreds the term or label African-American was closer to the truth than it is now. The people of the late seventeen and early eighteen hundreds, who were captured from the west coast of the continent without cold, and brought to America were indeed African-Americans.

Now, those of us who's ancestors have been here since then, can't logically be called African-American.

Why do I say that?

Let's look at my family history. I'm a Black-American. I've been fortunate enough to trace my history back to the late seventeen hundreds. Not all of my family history is pure African. I [we] suspect our ancestors came from Gambia. We know they were brought to South Carolina and sold.

When my slave owning ancestor died, his white children had a huge fight over his will. They fought about who would get the slaves, one being my great, great-grandmother who was his daughter by a slave. Her son was my maternal great-grandfather. We actually have a copy of that will.

Next, I [we] know that my other maternal great, great, Grandmother was Cherokee and walked the trail of tears when she was nine years old. Her daughter married the grandson of my slave owning ancestor and the progenitorship goes on from there.

Terms, terms, terms, in the human condition the word is a synonym for label. Humanity seems to be predisposed to labeling something or someone. Black-American, African-American, the sun is yellow, no, the sun is orange... etcetera, etcetera, etcetera!

In the late eighties Jesse Jackson, other Black people of distinction, the press, columnists, and commentators, made the phrase African-American popular with hopes of unifying, maybe even centralizing, people of Black African descent and bringing into fruition, humanity's favorite past-time of labeling everything we lay eyes on.

My contention is: using the term African-American, for those of us who have genealogical lines going back to the seventeen and eighteen hundreds, isn't logical.

When one says that they are African-American, it means that they have come to America from, Kenya, Somalia, Ghana, Uganda, Rwanda, etc... and have become American citizens. These people are Africans. They don't have any other ethnicity running through their veins.

When one is a Black-American, it means that they were born in America. Their Black ancestors were brought to here three centuries ago. In this case, this means that very, very few have pure African blood running through their veins. So, how are they African-American?

John McWhorter said it best and so eloquently, (Los Angeles Times --September 8, 2004) "It's time we descendants of slaves brought to the United States let go of the term "African-American" and go back to calling ourselves Black -- with a capital B." Read More...

YES, the slave trade was and still is the most hideous of human practices. But, for Black-Americans to try and become something we're not which, is African, is a denial of our own humanity.

I by no means, mean for anyone to forget the past. Learn from it, progress to higher standards. But, don't wallow in it. Wallowing is just an excuse to stagnate.

I, for one, will not call myself an African-American out of respect and honor to my Cherokee heritage. No, it's not that I don't have respect for my African roots and the hardships that my African ancestors endured.

To call myself African-American, negates my Indigenous ancestors; their blood runs thick under layers of American soil. The time "when they cried" still echoes on the winds...listen and you'll hear them.

**someone please, have the guts, the mark other**

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