Saturday, February 7, 2009

Dairy Queen Dreams

That cool, brilliant white and sweet continuous stream of deliciousness. Had to be terminated in order for you to eat it. So the Dairy Queen would put a stop to it with a flourish that made a small curled loop at the top. The beautiful frozen dessert iconography that seduced you into licking it first.

You could have it any way you wanted it. But first it was bright white, cold and sweet. Add peanuts and hot fudge; or to be a purist, have it in its virgin state. What glory to have a double in a cone on a hot, summer day. You stood in line with your community. Waiting patiently like a good citizen,with moms and pops, grandmas and grandpas, cool teenagers and the kids. Some of the kids could not see over the counter and the lady at the counter would come around it and serve them. And you had to be wary of the dreaded brain-freeze/ headache. Closing one eye, you were getting a valuable childhood parable about not being greedy.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Music Driven Memories

If some doo-wop music is played, I don't care if it is Freddy Fender's back up sound tracks. Time turns around and fades back on me. Back to a drive-in and when cars all had that faint smell of hot engine oil.

It was a drive-up greasy spoon with a basic menu, all of it fried. It was important to be seen there at some point on a Saturday night, early or late, or both. Its funny how the courting ritual can become associated with the smell of fried foods.

Fights started there. Peel-outs and grudge matches too. True love kindled and blazed in the cars parked there. And sadly could end the very next Saturday. There was crying, shouting, laughing, and radio sing-alongs all going on at the same time. The cacophony was delicious.

There were cars with just girls in them, and cars with just boys in them. Circling each other, pleading and shouting was going on. Which more often than not resulted in the girls hitting the exit and speeding off down the main road. With the boys not far behind, who harassed them at the very next stop light.

That was Saturday night. Sum and total. For years it was enough to see and be seen. Working a Saturday afternoon away tuning-up and cleaning up the heap to sit in the drive-in and for the most part, watch. Sounds dull, but every minute we thought something was just about to happen. And then, it was time to roll on home.

It would be late, the drive-in owner would be cutting the lights and running off the hangers-on. The dew had fallen and I could smell the wet grass and asphalt. Riding home would be a story of its own. Like an old hound dog with his head out a car side window, I could "taste" my way home as the cold and dew heightened the smell of the countryside. I could taste the farm fields, the feed store and the creek as I click-clacked over its bridge.

Amazing how all that forces its way back on the wings of an old song. I can even see the bugs gathering at night around the drive-in's outdoor lighting strips and bulbs. In a rural community those lights could be seen from a long way off and was one of the few promises of excitement for anybody looking for some. The music pouring out of our car radios also hinted at excitement, but in the end, we just went home.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Blog And The Complexity

Somewhere, and lately, while I traveled life's road I had a startling moment. I realized that complexity, the details, are what I have really been up against. The more I know about something the less intimidating it is. A large part of individual success is the gaining of understanding and mastering the details. In this case, the blog. I cannot leave it a mystery and expect success with it. Even if revenue is not involved.

But to the unscrupulous that same complexity can be used as a hustle. Remember that Bernard L. Madoff was called a genius and he is merely a crook, a swindler, a confidence man. His claim was to have handily mastered a complexity. Yet even the financially astute failed to survey the evidence of the fundamental shortcomings of the man's program. What they did know they denied.

So it follows that if I want to have my own blog, I will have to face its complexity properly. That complexity can be overcome if I work at understanding as much as I can, not expect a "free lunch," and bring what I do know to the table. I have heard that called due diligence, or, cowboy logic.

I already have some help. A blog community from BlogEvolve mentored me with fundamentals. Saving me time, errors and money. Spend some time making friends. Mine showed up immediately, which I am grateful for. It is the best insurance against mistakes you can have.

There is also another complexity, that baffled me and I am just beginning to realize what it is. Because I am just initiated, let me use the term "entity." Which could be Google or the websites that provide me a clean canvas to paint my blog on. In naiveness I gave each of them personalities, even occasionally considered them antagonistic towards me. However, at best they are indifferent. And rightfully so. For the most part each one is a formula, a software program. Oh happy days! None of them can really be mad at me, or subjectively judge me. So with that, I will work at gaining a grasp on how they operate. Keeping in mind it just may be a man in a white lab coat, with a clipboard, flipping a coin. And I'm not mad, really.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Fair Play And Earning Income Online

Through many attempts at multi-level marketing I experienced a whole lot of getting ready to make money that did not make money. Exciting? Well, yes. But with experience it dawned on me someone was making gobs of money off me getting ready. I never left the pier. Of course it could be said, that was my fault. Or maybe, I was in the wrong business. I should have been in the getting ready to make money, business. Selling the sizzle from one steak to a room full of hungry people. Is that technique at work on the internet? Of course! But at least here I can play for free.

I am learning every day. About SEO. And keywords and key phrases. I'm taking notes. I found out today that the thing that crawls my web pages is a spider. And it is getting more difficult to game the ad revenue system. My guess, a novice guess, is there is a battle of mathematicians going on. The big boys have made the calculations so elaborate that predictability is almost impossible.

Now, that is a metaphor for life. It isn't simple complaining to say that just as you had things figured out, everything changed. Changing odds and predictability keep the game of life fair. I remember a cartoon, first showing a huge computer, floor to ceiling with blinking lights and numerous screens; furiously working . . . the next panel was behind the device where a man stood with a clipboard and flipping a coin. He was feeding results in from there.

This is not cynicism. I hate cynicism. What I hope to point out is that this may be the fairest game on the planet. Especially if good people will play.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Die To Live Another Day

Exhaustion. Complexity overload. How big is the internet anyway? Looking for an out-drive boat motor quickly produced results from Australia. Everything from everywhere is available on the world wide web.

An Australian teacher just returning from a mission in China like Marco Polo with pictures and a Kiwi river-man from New Zealand with a piquant summary of the golden age of Islam. Feels as if they are next door and the US is far off.

The television says superbowl ad costs will remain high. That newspapers are all but done for. The internet is where the bulk of advertising is heading, at a dead run! Social networking (read: facebook) is where the eyeballs are going. No limits to creativity and capitalistic chutzpah there. Look at ICHCheezburger on twitter. 20,963 followers for a cat with terrible grammar that is becoming its own language. It is a derivative of "I can has cheez burger!"

The police just can't round up the usual suspects. All are suspects. The coin trickle can become a coin torrent. What you surmise is true, there is gold in them there hills. Even if it is like the running of the bulls at Pamplona and the danger of being fatally trampled is ever present. Because as in a video game, you get your life back after a bit and can play on, play through, make even bigger mistakes and die even more spectacularly. Let's get at it!