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The Federal Budget Explained (Simply)

Do not understand the federal budget and why the US got downgraded on our economy? Well the explanation below rather brilliantly cuts thru all the political doublespeak we get. It puts it into a much better perspective and is the same for many countries in Europe ... Why the U.S. was downgraded:

* U.S. Tax revenue:     $  2,170,000,000,000
* Fed budget:             $  3,820,000,000,000
* New debt:                $  1,650,000,000,000
* National debt:           $14,271,000,000,000
* Recent budget cuts: $       38,500,000,000

Let's now remove 8 zeros and pretend it's a household budget:

* Annual family income: $21,700
* Money the family spent: $38,200
* New debt on the credit card: $16,500
* Outstanding balance on the credit card: $142,710
* Total budget cuts: $385

Got It ?????

OK now Lesson # 2: Here's another way to look at the Debt Ceiling:

Let's say, you come home from work and find there has been a massive sewer backup in your neighborhood .... and your home has sew…

You Think You Know Everything?

This Post is a quiz for people who know everything…these are not trick questions, but they will make you think. They are straight questions with straight answers… Hope you feel up to the challenge…let me tell you, it was easier than the drive back from Houston…ha, ha, ha…enjoy and excelsior! BTW: The answers follow the questions if you need them, but I figure most of you will not!!  ________________________________________
1. Name the one sport in which neither the spectators nor the participants know the score or the leader until the contest ends.
2. What famous North American landmark is constantly moving backward?
3. Of all vegetables, only two can live to produce on their own for several growing seasons. All other vegetables must be replanted every year. What are the only two perennial vegetables?
4. What fruit has its seeds on the outside?
5. In many liquor stores, you can buy pear brandy, with a real pear inside the bottle. The pear is whole and ripe, and the bottle is gen…

Reap What You Sow

Tis the Season for kindness and understanding, and this post is a little different from my usual ones. Regardless of your belief or faith, kindness transcends all…and I cannot help myself in forwarding a tale of how actions speak much louder than words. I hope you have a Merry Christmas, a Joyous Hanukah, and good tidings to you and yours.
Good morning said a woman as she walked up to the man sitting on ground. It was mid December, and cold. The man slowly looked up.
This was a woman clearly accustomed to the finer things of life. Her coat was new.. She looked like she had never missed a meal in her life.
His first thought was that she wanted to make fun of him, like so many others had done before.. "Leave me alone," he growled....
To his amazement, the woman continued standing.
She was smiling -- her even white teeth displayed in dazzling rows. "Are you hungry?" she asked.
"No," he answered sarcastically. "I've just come from dining with th…

12 Warning Signs of Fascism

1. Exuberant nationalism
Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic images, slogans and symbols - National flags are seen everywhere in public display. Territorial aggression is explained to be mere destiny -- an unbidden greatness thrust upon the nation by history.

It is this burden of unique responsibility that now raises the fascist state above all previous constraint, no longer bound by international obligations, treaties or law.

2. Enemies Identified
This national cause is identified as unity against enemies - The people are rallied around a unifying patriotism directed against some common threat: communists, liberals, a racial, ethnic or religious minority, intellectuals, homosexuals, terrorists, etc.

The state's message is sometimes couched in an easily recognized religious theme. Amazingly, this language is used even when the full context of the teaching shows the meaning to be diametrically opposed. Any dissent is "siding with the enemy", and therefor…

It is all Relative

This is a tale of what people throw away...sometimes in business we miss the really important things, like making our customers happy, or selling what you believe, not just for profits. Enjoy this tale of caution....
A Jewish woman says to her mother, "I'm divorcing Jeff! All he wants is sex, and my vagina is now the size of a 50 cent piece when it used to be about the size of a 5 cent piece."
Her mother says, "You're married to a multimillionaire businessman, you live in an 8 bedroom mansion, you drive a Ferrari, you get $2,000 a week allowance, you take 6 vacations a year and you want to throw all that away over 45 cents?"

Life in Summary

Sometimes as we diligently pursue our monetary goals in life and business, we really forget what is important and true in life...these tidbits are what we should self evident that life is good, and the journey should be fun... ________________________________________

GREAT TRUTHS THAT LITTLE CHILDREN HAVE LEARNED:
1) No matter how hard you try, you can't baptize cats.
2) When your Mum is mad at your Dad, don't let her brush your hair.
3) If your sister hits you, don't hit her back. They always catch the second person.
4) Never ask your 3-year old brother to hold a tomato.
5) You can't trust dogs to watch your food..
6) Don't sneeze when someone is cutting your hair.
7) Never hold a Dust-Buster and a cat at the same time.
8) You can't hide a piece of broccoli in a glass of milk.
9) Don't wear polka-dot underwear under white shorts.
10) The best place to be when you're sad is Grandma's lap.


GREAT TRUTHS THAT ADULTS HAVE LEARNED:
1) Raising teena…

Are you an Oxymoron

An oxymoron is a combination of words that contradict each other. Here is a list of some...how many more can you think of? Let me know and I will add them

1. virtual reality

2. original copy

3. old news

4. act naturally

5. pretty ugly

6. living dead

7. jumbo shrimp

8. rolling stop

9. constant variable

10. exact estimate

11. paid volunteers

12. civil war

13. sound of silence

14. clever fool

15. only choice

16. deafening silence

17. black light

18. concrete jungle

19. tax free

20. unorthodox standard

21. stationary runner

Changing Buying Behavior

As any good marketer knows, understanding your potential client is critical to maximizing your profits and your advertising spends. Below is a good example of how women think as they grow older.

A group of 15-year-old girlfriends discussed where to meet for dinner. Finally, they agreed to meet at the Dairy Queen next to the Ocean View restaurant because they had only $6.00 among them and Jimmy Johnson, the cute boy in Social Studies, lived on that street.

10 years later, the group of 25-year-old girlfriends discussed where to meet for dinner. Finally, they agreed to meet at the Ocean View restaurant because the beer was cheap, the restaurant offered free snacks, the band was good, there was no cover and there were lots of cute guys.

10 years later, the group of 35-year-old girlfriends discussed where to meet for dinner. Finally, they agreed to meet at the Ocean View restaurant because the cosmos were good, it was right near the gym and, if they went late enough, there wouldn't be …

Not What It Appears

Ever run into something too good to be true just to find out that you were just suckered or hoodwinked! It happens to all of us, even in business. We should know better, but we listen to the wrong parts of our body and make stupid mistakes. Well, let this little story help explain why that is so....

A woman and a man are involved in a car accident on a snowy, cold Monday morning; it's a bad one. Both of their cars are totally demolished, but amazingly neither of them is hurt. God works in mysterious ways. After they crawl out of their cars, the man is yelling about women drivers.

The woman says, 'So, you're a man. That's interesting. I'm a woman. Wow, just look at our cars! There's nothing left, but we're unhurt. This must be a sign from God that we should be friends and live in peace for the rest of our days.'

Flattered, the man replies, 'Oh yes, I agree completely, this must be a sign from God! But you're still at fault...women shouldn't…

Another Look at Honesty

This little post is about honesty and how sometimes even good intentions can get you into trouble…oh I so fondly remember the countless times I was sent to the principal or asked to stand outside in the hallway…it is amazing I learned anything in school!  The moral here is when starting or running a business, no matter what...it is best to be honest..with yourself, customers, clients, vendors, employees ... everyone!

…pretend you are in 3rd grade when you read this story….

Our teacher asked us what our favorite animal was and I said, "Fried chicken."
She said I wasn't funny, but she couldn't have been right, everyone else in the class laughed.

Anyway, my teacher sent me to the principal's office. I told him what happened, and he laughed too. Then he told me not to do it again.
My parents told me to always be truthful and honest, and I am. Fried chicken is my favorite animal.

I told my dad what happened, and he said my teacher was probably a member of PETA. He s…

Stress Management

Everybody has to deal with stress especially when starting up a business. This is a great story on how to deal with stress, and a good ideal on how to mitigate it. Life can be hard, starting a business can make it harder still, but if you follow this advice..you can mitigate the "stress."
A lecturer, when explaining stress management to an audience, raised a glass of water and asked, "How heavy is this glass of water?"
Answers called out ranged from 20g to 50g.
The lecturer replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it.
If I hold it for a minute, it's not a problem.
If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm.
If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance.

In each case, it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes."

He continued, "And that's the way it is with stress management.

If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, th…

The Business Of Halloweeen 2011

Run Through The Rain

It is funny how life throws mishaps large and small you way...and it is more hysterical how we deal with them. This story about a little girl and rain shows how sometimes just letting go is what you need. I hope it brings a smile to your heart and helps you remember how if you can still see and believe like a child, that anything can happen.
A little girl had been shopping with her Mom in Wal-Mart. She must have been 6 years old, this beautiful red haired, freckle faced image of innocence.It was pouring outside. The kind of rain that gushes over the top of rain gutters, so much in a hurry to hit the earth it has no time to flow down the spout.. We all stood there, under the awning, just inside the door of the Wal-Mart. We waited, some patiently, others irritated because nature messed up their hurried day.
I am always mesmerized by rainfall. I got lost in the sound and sight of the heavens washing away the dirt and dust of the world. Memories of running, splashing so carefree as a chil…

Lawyers Say the Funniest Things!

My Fryday humor post involves lawyers and some of the dialogue they have in court. These are from a book called Disorder in the American Courts, and are things people actually said in court, word for word, taken down and now published by court reporters that had the torment of staying calm while these exchanges were actually taking place...Enjoy, and happy Fryday! ________________________________________
ATTORNEY: Are you sexually active?
WITNESS: No, I just lie there.
________________________________________
ATTORNEY: This myasthenia gravis, does it affect your memory at all?
WITNESS: Yes.
ATTORNEY: And in what ways does it affect your memory?
WITNESS: I forget.
ATTORNEY: You forget? Can you give us an example of something you forgot?
________________________________________
ATTORNEY: Do you know if your daughter has ever been involved in voodoo?
WITNESS: We both do.
ATTORNEY: Voodoo?
WITNESS: We do.
ATTORNEY: You do?
WITNESS: Yes, voodoo.
________________________________________
AT…

Warren Buffet's Great Idea....

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it will only take three days for most people (in the U.S.) to receive the message. Maybe it is time….. Let us do it!!!
Warren Buffett, in a recent  interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the debt ceiling:
"I could end the deficit in 5 minutes," he told CNBC. "You just pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election.  The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971...before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.  Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took 1 year or less to become the law of the land...all because of public pressure.
Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask each of those…

10 Things to Ponder

I love lists of things...and this one makes me stop and think...hope it does for you too?

Number 10:------Life is sexually transmitted.

Number 9: Good health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one can die.

Number 8: Men have two emotions: Hungry and Horny. If you see him without an erection, make him a sandwich.

Number 7: Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day. Teach a person to use the Internet and they won't bother you for weeks.

Number 6: Some people are like a Slinky....not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs.

Number 5: Health nuts are going to feel stupid someday, lying in hospitals, dying of nothing.

Number 4: All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.

Number 3: Why does a slight tax increase cost you $800.00, and a substantial tax cut saves you $30.00?

Number 2: In the 60's, people took acid to make the world weird. Now the world is weird and peop…

Lie Lowest - Credit

Someone just contacted me about a quotation I posted some time ago about humility and paying homage, and they asked me about the citation. OK, the quotation is actually mine, and it is derived from Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching Chapter 66:
"That whereby the rivers and seas are able to receive the homage and tribute of all the valley streams, is their skill in being lower than they;--it is thus that they are the kings of them all. So it is that the sage (ruler), wishing to be above men, puts himself by his words below them, and, wishing to be before them, places his person behind them."

Here is my paraphrasing:

“All rivers pay homage to the ocean for it lies lowest.”

--Jeffrey Fry

Some have accused me of stealing from the great master, and I thought I had not. He is talking about leadership, I am talking about humility (though both are intertwined). I had been saying my river quotation for over 30 years, and could not remember where I first learned it! I has to be when I was in military…

Death to the Republic?

In 1887 Alexander Tyler, a Scottish history professor at the University of Edinborough, had this to say about the fall of the Athenian Republic some 2,000 years prior:
"A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse over loose fiscal policy, (which is) always followed by a dictatorship."
"The average age of the world's greatest civilizations from the beginning of history, has been about 200 years. During those 200 years, these nations always progressed through the following sequence:
From bondage to spiritual faith;
From spiritual faith to great courage;
From courage to liberty;
From liberty to abun…

Two Wolves

I have been thinking a lot about business and partnerships, and how sometimes people whom you thought you could trust no longer capable of the trust you bestowed them. So, what do you do? Do you get even, or try to rectify things legally, or just walk away? For each person and situation that is a personal decision, but I have found that a very old story told to me some time ago actually makes a great deal of sense when dealing with issues out of your control. It is a Cherokee tale of Two Wolves.

An old Cherokee Grandfather was counseling his grandson who came to him with anger at a friend who had done him an injustice. 

"Let me tell you a story,” he began. “I too, at times, have felt a great hate for those that have taken so much, with no sorrow for what they do. But hate wears you down, and does not hurt your enemy. It is like taking poison and wishing your enemy would die. I have struggled with these feelings many times."

He continued, "It is as if there are two wolve…

The Cab Ride

Sometimes I have to remind myself that through thick and thin, you are the reason I do what I do…this little story in poignant for a few reasons, none more so as how kindness can affect BOTH parties.
________________________________
The Cab Ride
I arrived at the address and honked the horn. After waiting a few minute, I walked to the door and knocked.. 'Just a minute', answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the floor.

After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 90's stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940's movie. By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets. There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware.

'Would you carry my bag out to the …

The Charlie Schulz Philosophy

(This is marvelous!! Scroll thru slowly and read carefully to receive and enjoy full effect)

The following is the philosophy of Charles Schulz, the creator of the 'Peanuts' comic strip.

You don't have to actually answer the questions. Just ponder on them.

Just read the e-mail straight through, and you'll get the point.

1. Name the five wealthiest people in the world.

2. Name the last five Heisman trophy winners.

3. Name the last five winners of the Miss America pageant.

4 Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize.

5. Name the last half dozen Academy Award winners for best actor and actress.

6. Name the last decade's worth of World Series winners.

How did you do?

The point is, none of us remember the headliners of yesterday.

These are no second-rate achievers.

They are the best in their fields.

But the applause dies..

Awards tarnish..

Achievements are forgotten.

Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners.

Here's anot…

Why Accountants and Tatoos do not Mix!

This is a short and sweet story about an account and his tattoo. I personally do not like tats, but Larry, Larry is an exceptional case. His rationale for the tattoo is impeccable and I hope it make you understand why he should have forgone the tat. As you know, accountants do it by the numbers!

Well Larry is the guy who gets home late one night and Linda, his wife, says "Where the hell have you been?" Larry replies

"I was out getting a tattoo!"

"A tattoo"? she frowned. "What kind of tattoo did you get?"

"I got a hundred dollar bill on my privates" he said proudly.

"What the hell were you thinking?” she said, shaking her head in disgust. "Why on earth would an accountant get a hundred dollar bill tattooed on his privates?"

"Well, one, I like to watch my money grow. Two, once in a while I like to play with my money. Three, I like how money feels in my hand. And, lastly, instead of you going out shopping, you can…

Sometimes You Can Miss a Good Opportunity

Below is a great story about missing a great opportunity by NOT having the right information...How does the saying go...“Luck is where preparation meets opportunity."
A priest was driving along and saw a nun on the side of the road. He stopped and offered her a lift which she accepted. She got in and crossed her legs, forcing the dress to open and reveal a leg. The Priest looks and nearly has an accident, and after changing gear lets his hand slide up her leg. She immediately says "Father remember Luke 14:10". The priest apologizes profusely and removes his hand but is unable to remove his eyes from her legs. Further on when he changes gear and has ogled at her leg for the Zillionth time he lets the hand slide up the leg again. The Nun once again says "Father remember Luke 14:10". Once again the priest apologizes. "Sorry sister but you know the flesh is weak." Arriving at the convent, the nun gets out and the priest goes on his way.

Once he arrives …

I Wish You Enough

I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright no matter how gray the day may appear.
I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun even more...
I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive and everlasting.
I wish you enough pain so that even the smallest of joys in life may appear bigger.
I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
I wish you enough hellos to get you through the final good-bye.

Design Flaws

I am an engineer, so when I see a reason to combine religion, engineering, and an American icon, Harley Davidson I just have to do it. OK, this might be a bit racy for a few of my readers, but it will definitely put a smile on your face. Good design does not always equate to better market share.  May your highways be smooth and your gas tank always full. Ride on my friends:

The inventor Arthur Davidson, of the Harley Davidson Motorcycle Corporation, died and went to heaven.

At the gates, St. Peter told Arthur, "Since you've been such a good man and your motorcycles have changed the world, your reward is you can hang out with anyone you want in Heaven."

Arthur thought about it for a minute and then said, "I want to hang out with God."

St. Peter took Arthur to the Throne Room, and introduced him to God. Arthur then asked God, "Hey, aren't you the inventor of woman? "

God said, "Ah, yes."

"Well, " said Arthur, "professio…