Stone Chips and Insurance

Posted by Harry Bishop on Jul 31st, 2008
2008
Jul 31

It’s been one of those times for my car.

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It’s getting a bit old these days, a 2002 Mini Cooper, but given my driving needs these days it’s only got 88,000 km on it so still has a lot of life left in it. (yes, it’s a picture borrowed from Google, I don’t have a pic of my own car around at the moment.)

Last month a kid dropped his bicycle on my hood and didn’t stay around … off to Maaco, they tried the “pop it out” method but no luck – dear sir, please sign here on our Visa machine, we have to fix and repaint the hood. Wonderful.

Then at  the start of the month, I started getting “that” sound from the brakes, with a slight bit of fade, and thought to myself “oh-oh they need replacing”. Turns out they were almost completely gone, which was irritating because the last checkup my dealer said nothing about brakes being needed soon – I’m glad I could tell on my own! But 4 brakes and pads put yet another dent in the month’s budget.

So 2 days ago in the morning I get a rock kicked up on the windshield, but it looks like there is no damage, But then later I get in to drive home from work, and I’ve got a 6 inch stress crack in the windshield. So it’s off to Go Glass – it can go through insurance, and they pay a small part of the deductible, so at least it’s half the price of paying for the whole thing myself. But my bank account is still not impressed.

So the windshield replacement is scheduled for tomorrow … yesterday afternoon, after booking that appointment and driving home on the highway, another rock and another chip in the window. Arghh! At least it happened before the new windshield was put in, but  I just hope I’ve finished my run of unexpected costs this month.

Online Comics – Cat and Girl

Posted by Harry Bishop on Jul 30th, 2008
2008
Jul 30

Yay for Cat and Girl!!!

This is the comic that people shake their head over at work. It’s obviously written by a literature and philosophy geek … deep thoughts and social musings, discussed by a girl and her anthropomorphic cat, and their acquaintances.You know, the sort of stuff written by somebody at home in a smoke-filled poetry den, playing Scrabble while discussing Zen and the need to retreat from material urges.

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Yup, it’s intellectual hippie time. Except for one thing … I’m just maybe kinda sorta a bit like that myself, and lots of these comics just make me howl with laughter. Web comics for the truly geeky! :-)

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I showed this one to my brother-in law, the Presbyterian minister:

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Online Comics – Candi

Posted by Harry Bishop on Jul 29th, 2008
2008
Jul 29

Yup, I’m going alphabetically! :-)

Candi is the story of a young redhead, her friends, and everyone’s sexual frustrations. Gee, just like really being in your ytoung twenties! Warning,adult themes.

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It’s towards the end of my regular read list, not that great for my personal tastes, but interesting enough for a “fluff” read.

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And yes, it’s alternative-lifestyle friendly.

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Online Comics – Bruno The Bandit

Posted by Harry Bishop on Jul 28th, 2008
2008
Jul 28

Well it’s going to be one of those weeks. My friend’s mother died, I’m starting a couple of new website projects at work, spent yesterday replacing sod and helping my daughter with her math course – you get the idea.

So this week is a continuation, of my introducing you to some of the web comics I enjoy and you might also. Today, is Bruno The Bandit.

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How do you Spell Bruno? Easy – D. U. M. B. He’s the epitome of the dumb bruthish thief. The comics has had a lot of so-so spots, but at times it’s quite enjoyable, when it’s skewering politics or the rich.

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Gee, I wonder if George Bush and Bruno are related?

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JetBlue – without Truthful Branding, don’t advertise!

Posted by Harry Bishop on Jul 27th, 2008
2008
Jul 27

Thanks to John Moore’s blog for pointing me to an Advertising Age article talking about JetBlue’s success in WOM and their recent customer service issues…

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… JetBlue achieved its success by being unlike the other airlines. Its good name spread — via word-of-mouth and smart marketing — because great customer service gave it a compelling story to tell.

Priority No. 1 should be getting back to a place where consumers want to share good stories. Take the money being wasted on <their advertising> campaign and plow it into customer service …


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It’s interesting to see an advertising magazine telling a company to not advertise, and more interesting to me is why … they’re basically telling JetBlue that their brand is no longer truthful to their message, and their priority has to be, fix that first.

Where you’re coming from – Google Analytics Geography

Posted by Harry Bishop on Jul 26th, 2008
2008
Jul 26

I switched my primary web stats over to Google Analytics about two months ago, so I now have enough data to actually be statistically significant. I find it interesting to see where visitors to this blog continue to come from.

In two months I’ve had visitors from 96 different countries. This (and the detail behind it), is close enough to the 2 other stats packages I’m running for me to feel fairly comfortable with it as useful information. And yes, that’s just another example of the fact that every web stats package reports different metrics- even something as basic as “visits” is interpreted and recorded differently by various packages.

Back to the main topic, here’s this blog’s top 10 visiting countries…

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If we ignore the fact that Google Analytics can’t tell where roughly 1/4 of my visitors actually come from geographically, then the US accounts for roughly 1/3 of the traffic on my web site, and Canada about 1/9. Which considering Canada is about 10% of the population of the US, seems like a good ratio. The rest of the top 10 are pretty much what I expected, it’s the countries I read blogs and forums from, except for one surprise – welcome Aussies!! :-) I was surprised to see Australia clocking in at #6, very neat to me to realize the site is being viewed that much down under.

Here for your interest is a list of the other 86 countries people visited from during these past 60 days (rounded up to 0.01% for the really low numbers of visitors):

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To all, THANK YOU for visiting and reading, and I hope you continue to enjoy most of what I write about.

Online Comics – Boondocks

Posted by Harry Bishop on Jul 25th, 2008
2008
Jul 25

Keeping in yesterday’s theme of online comics with a out-front ethnic focus, today’s web entertainment for your viewing pleasure is The Boondocks.

Huey has the intelligence and political viewpoint of a young Black Panther. Unfortunately he’s still in elementary school. His younger brother Riley would like to be a “gangsta punk with bling”. And they’ve both moved from the inner city to their grandfather’s house in the (predominately white) suburbs.

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Yup, typical situation comedy, almost as if it was on TV.

Um, wait a second, it is on TV.

Yes, it was syndicated and is now on the tube. It’s okay, but I actually like the comic strips better than I like the show, in this case.

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The race part isn’t really that funny to me (seeing too much real prejudice over the years has turned me off that topic as being that humorous), and I can live without stereotypes, but Huey uses his intelligence like Calvin uses his imagination … it’s funny in a way where you just have to feel sorry for the grown-ups! :-)

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Online Comics – Baldo

Posted by Harry Bishop on Jul 24th, 2008
2008
Jul 24

Getting back to a more family-friendly comics category is Baldo. It’s very ethnically focused, based on the title character with his typical teenage car dreams and job issues, and his family.

It’s interesting to see a perspective on Hispanic family life from a comic viewpoint, it’s nice and different from the typical fare you get from most mainstream syndicated comics.

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