Topic: About As Dumb As It Gets

So, Let’s consider: Y: The Last Man – You Can’t Fix STUPID! 0

So, Let’s consider: Y: The Last Man – You Can’t Fix STUPID!

Whomever coined the phrase “you can’t fix stupid” CLEARLY had this show in mind. If this waste of electrons makes it
through its first season I’ll be shocked! This show gives new and lower meaning to “insulting your intelligence” !!

The whole concept is that for some inexplicable reason, almost all of the male population of all animals on the earth die of some
form of hemoragic event and all at the SAME TIME. Almost as if on cue! …well, considering this is a TV show, they probably DID all die on cue…it’s in the script.

By the time day 8 comes around in the second episode, provided you survive the stupidity of the first episode, the whole world is totally female, in chaos, and clearly nobody is in charge. Sorry feminists, if you’re not pissed off at this show, you should be.

After less than 90 minutes of what amounts to total bullshit, I gave up and went back to Championship Sock Matching…it was less of an insult to my intelligence.

If this show survives the season it’s just to the incredible amount of stupid people watching it that don’t have anything
that would pass for real lives.

I’m Don Rima and that’s the view From Where I Stand.

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So, Let’s consider: Some reasons to avoid Timeshares – 2021 Update – The Revenge of all the FEE$… 0

So, Let’s consider: Some reasons to avoid Timeshares – 2021 Update – The Revenge of all the FEE$…

I first wrote this a long time ago, and it’s been a while since I’ve done more with my time share than pay the annual Maintenance FEE… So, when I decided to use it for a week’s vacation this year, I totaled up all the FEE$ I had to pay and I got some major FEE Sticker shock.

First there’s the “annual maintenance FEE” which for me is now just shy of $1000. They never said it would get anywhere near this high when I was buying. Then there’s the Membership FEE that you have to pay to be part of an organization like “Interval” that allows you to “exchange” and actually use your time share. Uh, that FEE is just shy of $200 per year. Then when I went to “exchange” my timeshare, I got socked with yet another “exchange FEE” of just shy of $200. So far, my housing costs for this week away is just shy of $1400. And, I’m expecting a “resort FEE” to be assessed when I finally get to the place…it’s happened too many times in the past.

Now, I don’t know about you, but $1400 buys a helluva lot of really nice hotel time, where ever I want it, generally with breakfast (and at no additional FEE)…. SO, when you’re listening to some grease ball telling you how great his timeshare office is, you may want to think again…

And, I’m again reminded of what I originally wrote, long ago…

OK so we’ve all heard of them. Frankly you can’t go on a decent vacation to any resort and not have some high pressure attempt to sell you one. Usually for free tickets to some tourist trap or another, and OH, if your spouse is with you they MUST attend with you…it’s all part of the high reassure sales scheme to snooker you into buying one….yupo, I’m talking about…a timeshare.

The schemes have changed over the years. You used to have deeded property, now you buy “points” or whatever, depending on what the scheme, uh, plan, actually is that’s being pitched.
You’ll be told perhaps as many have been in the past that they’re “GREAT investments…”, “you can pass them along to your family…”, “they’re going to increase in value…” and any of many other lines designed to make you fork over a lot of dough for some expensive stuff.

For starters, it’s not an investment. You should never even think of it as an investment – regardless of what the sales people tell you. The resale market for timeshares is incredibly illiquid and it’s doubtful you’d find a buyer, much less one that’s willing to pay you what you paid for it, and forget making any profit. There are however any number of organizations willing to take your timeshare off your hands…for a hefty fee… Also forget the idea of being able to “trade up” at some later date…the only way you’re going to be able to trade “up” is if you pay a hefty fee for the honor.

Are you SURE you want to go to the same venu each and every year? Really? What about logistic issues getting to and from your venu? Keep in mind, you’re totally locked in to a set time when you have access to your property. Depending on your contract you may be able to rent or trade your unit, but that’s something to read in the fine print. For some you have to play the points game, and that presumes that you even have it all figured out!

What if your schedule changes or some event happens that you can’t take your vacation that week? You’re screwed. Some let you “bank” your weeks and trade them, some don’t and some totally depend on the points system…again, caveat emptor and read the fine print.

Finally there’s those ever rising “maintenance fees” that they really either don’t talk much about when you’re buying or they downplay the hell out of. Trust me, they WILL INCREASE. They WILL get expensive. You will NOT be able to do anything about it. You’re contractually locked in to having to pay whatever they tell you that your assessment is. And, frankly when you do the math on how many units your place has, at 52 weeks a year times what you’re paying for your week’s maintenance fees…you’re going to quickly realize that someone’s really making a lot of dough, and it’s NOT you.

If you want to get a free set of tickets to some expensive vacation park, ok, go for the sales pitch, but, don’t fall for the pitch, regardless of how much they browbeat you, bitch, moan, pressure you, etc. Make sure you think LOGICALLY and do the financial math before you even think of this stuff. And don’t fall for that “this is a special price for right now only” line of crap. If they REALLY WANT your sale, they’ll sell to you at that price today or next week. They’re all commission sales based…and there’s always more than one person selling these things…

I’m Don Rima and that’s the view From Where I Stand.

So, Let's consider: Why does it take 30 minutes to get your prescription ready? 0

So, Let’s consider: Why does it take 30 minutes to get your prescription ready?

OK, so lucky me picks up the broncho bug du jour this weekend. In between coughing my head off today I wandered into the doc in a box down the street. I figured they’d give me a shot and write me a script for some eye of newt and I’d be on my way. Why they want to give me a shot in my butt for a problem in my head and chest is something I didn’t really understand, but then, I really wasn’t well enough to get into a long debate on the subject.
Alas, they called in one med and gave me a hard copy script for the cough syrup since it contains some good stuff…and off to my local Walmart across the street I go.
Upon presenting my paperwork I’m told it’s going to be 30 minutes before my script is ready. Why it take 30 minutes to count out a few pills and pour up a potion every time I visit there I’ll never really understand. However, putting my MBA to use it’s clear to me that they want to me meander around the store, and hopefully in my sick stupified state I’ll find some other items they have for sale that I just gotta buy. Sorry, you got the wrong guy for this marketing scheme.
I’m a normal guy. I don’t like shopping. I really hate it more when they move stuff in a store in order to encourage me to meander through many additional aisles to not only reorient myself as to where what I want is, but in the hopes I’ll find something I don’t need and buy it. Generally pisses me off more than anything. If it takes me longer to find what I want and hit the cash register line than it does to walk from my truck to the front door, I’m wasting time. And the topic of only one lane open at a Walmart is a topic for another time.
SO, I’m stuck at Walmart for 30 minutes while the chemist counts out the pills…what to do.
Using my calibrated eyeball, I estimated that the inner perimeter of the store is about 1/5th to 1/4th of a mile. So, if I walked 4 or so laps around the inside of the store I’d have walked my daily mile while waiting for my pills and potions. And since we’re talking Walmart, you never know what you’re going to see that’s not on sale…some of which I’m sure you’re going to regret seeing.
So, that’s what I do. When I have a script to pickup, I have my saw bones send the script to Walmart. I could use any of several smaller local chemists, but the inside diameter of their stores isn’t big enough for me to be able to enjoy my walk…and yes, I know I could do additional laps to make up for the length distance…but why? I’d only be seeing the same stuff I don’t want to buy more frequently.
By the way, grab a grocery cart to take with you and throw something in it so you look like an official shopper…and good luck dodging all those huge carts being filled with stuff for other patrons to come in and pickup that are just too damn lazy to do their own shopping…or maybe their lives are just so super packed with incredibly important stuff, like curing the common cold without having to wait 30 minutes for your pills to be counted…

I’m Don Rima and that’s the view From Where I Stand.

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So, Let's consider: Is there an alternative to banks that charge those high ATM fee$ 0

So, Let’s consider: Is there an alternative to banks that charge those high ATM fee$

OK, so I’m scanning through last Friday’s (October 4, ’19) USA Today’s Money section and there on page one is an article by Paul Davidson lamenting how much more people are going to get hit with bank higher ATM fees and increased fees. And, he’s right!
Face it, a bank already HAS your money so they can keep as much of it via new and improved, at least for them, fees that syphon money from your pocket to theirs as fast as their computers will let them! Monthly “maintenance fees”, “imaging fees”, ATM fees, statement fees…hell, I’m waiting for them to have a fee for charging you all those fees!
It amazes me just how many people will WILLINGLY pay a bank a fee to get their money out of the bank! Think about that for a moment! Is that a racket or what?
But, there is an alternative. Frankly one that I was really annoyed and surprised that Davidson’s ignorance totally missed in his article. But, then, considering how many ads for banks his paper runs it would probably get censored by the sales department.
I’m talking about good old Credit Unions. With my Credit Union I don’t have those ripoff ATM fees (provided I use one of their ATM’s). I don’t have minimum balance ripoff fees that continue to drain my balance until there’s nothing left to drain. I don’t have those “maintenance fees”. In fact, I don’t have any fees at all, and I don’t have a minimum balance issue either! TAKE THAT BANK DuJour!
So, if you’re tired of being ripped off by all those banking fees, CLOSE YOUR BANK ACCOUNT, and open an account at a credit union! There’s plenty to be found! And, there’s no reason not to!
But then, if you’re as dumb as Davidson seems to be, you can just go right on with your bank…and pay all those fee$ and make your bank really happy to take your money as fast as you’ll let them.
After all, it’s only money…YOUR MONEY!

I’m Don Rima and that’s the view From Where I Stand.

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So, Let’s consider: What makes water "Smart" ?? 0

So, Let’s consider: What makes water “Smart” ??

OK, since the beginning of time, water has been just that – good ole H2O! It was wet, cold, hot, cool, refreshing, running down the creek, but it’s always been water…just WATER.

But all that was before the age of marketing where some advertising agency is paid big bucko$ to blast us with all kinds of misinformation about what they think we should be eating, doing, being and yes even drinking.

So, let’s think about this a bit. I’m sure you’ve seen the bottles. They’re almost everywhere, in ads, people drinking them on TV, highly visible presence in stores, bars, etc., but just what makes “Smart Water” any more beneficial than the much cheaper stuff you find right next to it on the shelf or in your store’s coolers? The short answer in all likelihood is NOTHING!. In fact, I would suggest that the only “smart” ones are the marketing guys that are actually able to get all the gullible people out there to pay so much more for the same stuff in the cheaper bottles right next to it.

If about now you’re feeling really stupid about all that extra money you spent thinking that what was in your bottle was smarter than the regular stuff on the shelf and how you’ve just made the smarter people richer through your stupidity and at your expense, then congratulations, you’re gullible and you need to start thinking. Frankly, you’ve been snookered by someone’s marketing department that’s much smarter than you.

Once again it comes down to actually THINKING (which is a smart thing to do!) and reading the labels on products that you buy.

I’m Don Rima and that’s the view From Where I Stand.

So, Let's Consider: Walmart's latest bout with mental disorders 0

So, Let’s Consider: Walmart’s latest bout with mental disorders

In case you’ve been under a rock today, the great minds of yogurt at Walmart have once again capitulated and kowtowed to the liberal sychophantic and psyhopathic minds of the liberal media and every other political cause by deciding to not sell any firearms ammo any more. According to them, for some deranged reason, they think this will in some way reduce gun violence in America. Let’s take a look at a few things.
In 2018, according to the Gun Violence Archives, 340 deaths were due to mass shooting. Oh, by the way, ALSO during 2018, according to MADD, 10,874 people were killed by drunk drivers.
So, in support of the liberal anti-gun movement, they think that removing all ammo will reduce shooting deaths. I really have to wonder how that’s going to sell in Chicago…
What’s interesting and totally counter to their new corporate policy is that they’re still insisting on selling as much beer and wine as they can in clear SUPPORT of the 10,874 drunk driving deaths. So, just what and where are their real priorities? Reality or kowtowing to political correctness in the media? Is anyone at Walmart REALLY THINKING???
Does anyone at Walmart have a spine?
The next thing I expect them to do is stop selling auto parts to help reduce highway deaths….
Let’s think further: in a drunk driving event: the drunk driver is blamed – NOT THE BEER; in a boating accident the boat captain is blamed – NOT THE BOAT; etc…. The only exception to this is firearms… MAYBE society needs to wake up and put blame where it REALLY belongs…on the heads of the criminals!

I’m Don Rima and that’s the view From Where I Stand.

Verizon’s FiOS – Something to be avoided 0

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Verizon’s FiOS – Something to be avoided – Updated 4/25/2017
As those in their market service area are well aware by now due to the deluge of mail, phone calls, barrages of TV and radio advertisements, not to mention the pages and pages of print ads and mailers, Verizon has a product called FiOS.
FiOS is Verizon’s all in one answer to putting voice, internet and cable TV functionality in your home and to do so at a low cost – low cost at least to them.  Once they get all the fiber run in an area they then can pump a wide variety of goods and services down that one single little piece of fiber optic cable into your home.
Now, I have to admit, Verizon services and support are generally about as good as it gets.  You usually don’t end up with a brain dead technician to answer your tech support calls, coming out install or fix any of your problems, unlike some cable companies I know.
My problem with FiOS isn’t the services or support, it’s what happens AFTER they install the product to a home or site that has existing telephone service.
Keep in mind that with a regular telephone that is wired to your house with what we call “twisted pair wiring”, that the power supply that drives this connection, gives you your dial tone and makes things work when you pickup the phone is supplied by the telephone company.  They generally do a very good job at making sure that there’s power to the phone lines even if there’s no power to the house.   Your home can be as dark as a cave and there’s a good chance your telephone will still work.  This comes in handy for things like natural disasters from storms, power loss due to bad weather, your neighbor deciding to play Paul Bunyan and dropping a tree across your power line, or any of many other reasons we’ve all run into at one time or another in our life.
But, this all changes when you convert to FiOS.  During the conversion process, your copper cable is disconnected.  All power supporting the cable, internet and telephone functions is provided by you in your home.  Yeah, I kinda wondered if the power companies weren’t in on this as well when I first started thinking about it.  But the big hazard comes in when you lose power to your home.  At this point, you are switched to a very small short term running uninterrupted power supply (UPS) which is also installed with the FiOS.  How long this will keep you up and running will depend on its size and age.  Like all rechargeable batteries (of which this is one) they tend to deteriorate over time and they also have a short finite life when they’re fully charged.
The kicker is, when this UPS goes dead, your whole house goes dead.  Forget making any phone calls.  It just won’t happen.
For a good part of the population, this may not be a concern or just a passing pain in the tuckus, but, for the older parts of our population, this is a concern.  These are the people that may have a medical or other issue and need to be able to call someone for help or other logistical issues or needs.
When I first published this, I was fairly immediately hit with comments about how one could go out and recharge their cell phone on their cars, or how the current trend was away from copper and into fiber due to the amount of additional services we could have marketed to us.  Well, what about the older parts of our population that may not be able to go out to their car and recharge their cell phones?  And why do I need to buy additional services from Verizon, or whomever, if the current works just fine and even in a disaster?   Speaking of disasters, this now means that in a Katrina type event, you now not only have to wait for your local Telco to fix THEIR wiring, you have to wait also for the power company to send power to your house.  Is this really goodness?
Let’s look at the demographic trends of our population.  Guess what, we’re getting to have a much larger older population segment.  This trend is not in question. They’re going to be a concern due to their lack of availability to call out once the touted 4-hour limit of their UPS is dead.  This segment is growing and it’s not going to stop.  They can live VERY well without cable TV, but they can’t live without the means to call for help.  And for many shut ins, this is their social network.
So, I asked a Verizon representative about that and their reply was “go buy a cell phone”.  Now, let me get this straight, you want me to go buy another phone which is very expensive just to be able to call you and tell you that your service is broken and my house needs power and the phone at my house doesn’t work?  Well, their response is basically “yes”.  Granted, many of us already have at least one cell phone so for most of the reporting part isn’t an issue…unless you don’t have access to it…or the battery is dead…or you’re in one of the many dead cell zones that the Verizon Bimbo and his army of “technicians” just haven’t found yet.  Hello Verizon, can you hear me yet?  My house is in one of those partial dead zones.  And I’m on a ridge about 1200 feet about sea level.
Then, nobody is talking about what’s going to be done to handle all the toxic waste created from all these UPS batteries when they go dead and are past their usefulness time!?  If you figure out how many houses in the US have a phone in them in a metro area, figure that they’re going to need their battery replaced every 3 or so years.  In a short period of time, we’re going to dumping a lot of batteries in landfills and when they start to leak that’s a lot of lead acid that’s got to go somewhere.  Hello Al Gore, where are you and why aren’t you thinking about this as well?  Or are you too busy flying around in your private jet and calculating how big the carbon footprint of your house is this week?  Want to retire early and rich?  Figure out a way to PROFITABLY recycle these  batteries!
My recommendations are thus:  Avoid FiOS totally.  If you MUST have FiOS make sure that they install it separate from your existing telephone lines and if you’re a multiple phone line home (which many are due to internet dialup from several years ago), make sure that at least your main line is still a twisted pair copper wire connected to the home telephone switched network.  If they can’t guarantee you that you’ll keep your original copper line for telephone voice calls, you need to tell them “NO THANKS!”.
I’m Don Rima and that’s the way I see it, From Where I Stand.