Thursday, January 15, 2009


Dannnnnng - dude - the weekend's almost here! The difference between a busy week and a slow week at work? One flies like a jetliner, the other crawls like a turtle. Speaking of jetliners - amazing that plane that went down today. It's amazing because no serious injuries (or deaths, thank God) were reported. A flock of birds caused both engines to shut down. Crazy things happen in this world, I'm just so glad for the people inside that plane that everyone got out alive.

So, I was reading AOL. Here's the story, and here's my take on each one.
Retail Rip-Offs & Sneaky Tricks
1. So-Called "Liquidation" Sales
The deal with this is that the retailer is raising the price so that the "liquidation" sale price is actually as much or even more than the regular price. I don't do liquidation sales, for the most part, and even if I do, I am a very well-informed consumer: I will not buy stuff that's obviously no better deal or worse than anywhere else.

2. Tricky Changes to Cut Costs
Packaging rip-offs. They are making peanut butter jars with huge dips in the bottom of them protruding upward into the bottle, and making cereal boxes the same heighth and width, but not as deep as they used to be. Again, if you've been buying this stuff for all your life, you are acquainted with how many ounces are in that box or bottle. Bacon, too. I found that one long before the media reported about it. I am a very observant, inquisitive person - I look at packaging intently. When I saw a package of bacon for $2.00, I was like, yeahhh. Then, I saw it was a 12-ounce package instead of the normal 16-ounce package. Put that sucker right back down.

3. Heavy Discount, No Rain Checks!
The statement here is that retailers are putting huge discounts on a certain product and advertising such - but not stocking much of it and then it runs out quickly. They then offer you something of the same kind/quality at the REGULAR price. NOT!!! I'm the kind of person that is visiting the doorstep of the general manager's office and asking why they have run out of the product so quickly. I noticed this happening recently, I didn't know it was a ploy by retailers. I want a rain check or I want something of similar value at the discount price. Remember, the squeaky wheel adage? That's me when it comes to retailers and the games they play, and the game I play in response.

4. The Price Isn't Right
So there's a sale on something, you pick it up and whatever else you're buying, head to the cashier. The statement here is that the product rings up at full price and you, the buyer (we're talking supermarkets here) don't realize that you were charged full price until you get home and start looking at the receipt - or you never catch it at all. BenB? I'm the dude you see standing at the front of the store, just after I paid for everything, scrutinizing the entire receipt. I catch things FREQUENTLY - and at Fry's, I get my money BACK for those things that are rung up incorrectly. They aren't making any money off of me in that arena.

5. I skipped a bunch - not important - and this is the next one.
Popcorn at the Movies
Yes, I buy popcorn when I go to the movies or nachos. I know it's a huge ripoff. I don't go to the movies that often and I just shrug it off. The thing this report didn't bother to mention is that the theatres make thier livelihood off of the concessions stands, they don't make that much off of the cost of the movie ticket. I read about this a long time ago. Hey, I want them to stay in business - I don't go often but I do like going - some things you just need to fork out and let it go. I consider this one of those things. I think this report they were doing is in light of ecomonic times. Well, if you're without a job and don't have any money, probably going to the theatres at all is a bad idea.

6. Skipped some more - not going to do 21 of these.
Brand Name Medication
This is old news. Generics have the same active ingredients (for the most part, you have to read the label) as the brand-name. I don't buy brand name pain relievers and such. I learned a lot from my mother growing up - I learned how to shop. That level of education was GREATLY increased when I became an adult and - couldn't afford a lot. You learn ways to cut corners but still get what you need.

That's it. The rest I didn't want to comment on. I don't buy organics, if I go to a restaurant like Denny's and pay whatever for the bottomless cup - oh well. I RARELY go to a sit-down restaurant anymore, it's a moot point with me. I'm guessing that many people are becoming much more informed consumers as their money disappears and they have little to work with. Food is a huge expense, HUGE if you have a lot of people to feed. As I have said before, now that Michael is only here on the weekends, my food usage has gone down considerably and my visits to Fry's have decreased accordingly.

As for today - Mary got her paycheck out of the mailbox today. I know this because it always shows up either on the 15th or the 30th, if not the day before, and it wasn't in there when I got home. Not that I would do anything with it - the fact of the matter is that I know she's been paid. If she doesn't give me rent money - all of it for the entire month of January - before tomorrow, I will be heading down to the courthouse and filing the forcible detainer. Well, maybe not. Fridays get awfully busy after work. It may have to wait until Monday. I don't really want her rent - I want to get rid of her. She's a nutcase - as my other tenant so succinctly put it - he's been on the receiving end of her s*** - but if she offers the rent, lawfully I have no choice but to accept it. But - ONLY if she offers ALL of it. I do NOT have to take a partial payment, and if I do - that negates my ability to file for the detainer for this month.

I did a V-Log today while driving - several of them actually while all over Phoenix, Casa Grande, Coolidge and wherever else. I don't know if I'll post one of them today, but - Fin's interest in this guy that has a live webcam while he's driving a truck renewed that for me. I have several YouTubes that I have done while in the truck.

Anyway, I'm totally hungry. Like, I had a salad for lunch and now I'm ready for something filling.

C'ya later.

Thursday Morning

I was awakened this morning - about 4:00am.
What woke me up?
It was hot in my bedroom. Considering it's the middle of winter and the night time temps are in the 40's - it seemed rather odd.
You know that stuff that goes on in your head when you just wake up and you don't really know what's going on.
I got out of bed, walked over to the vent and felt warm air coming out of it.

Put my clothes on (one huge disadvantage of living with other people - you can't just walk out in your undies into the "communal" portions of the house), went out there. Sure enough, the furnace had been turned on - and set to SEVENTY-FIVE/75 DEGREES!!

Then I saw the notice I left her last night sitting on the kitchen table.

I have given her at least - 5 notices anyway - in the last week. Last night's notice was telling her to stop having her friends knocking on Ken's window. They knock on his window to ask if Mary is there!

Whatta piece of work.

Off to work.

Interesting day. Up early - 4:00, jolted out of deep sleep by the ridiculous phone alarm - annoying as all get out but that's the inten...