Wednesday, January 31, 2007

An interesting observation

I was getting gas tonight at a BP station just over the Missouri line* when something unexpected happened to me. An attendant, probably about 19-20 years old, was emptying the trash cans. As I was filling up, he asked me if I needed any help with anything. I told him that I was fine. He told me that if I needed help with anything, to let him know. He then started talking about the weather (which is terrible, by the way) and was generally very pleasant.

It was creepy.

As I was leaving, I got to thinking about how odd the guy's behavior seemed. But as I thought about it some more, I realized that what was really odd was that the guy's friendliness made him stand out so much, even to the point of being weird.

Have we really sunk so low that friendliness is considered weird? Have we become so accustomed to poor customer service, that good service is creepy? Sadly enough, I think this is the case.

*I filled up for $1.83 the other day. Gotta love cheap Missouri gas.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

(soon to be) New Toy

I'm borrowing one of these from a friend in the next week or two, and am going to give it a test run. I've read really good things about it, and it would be nice to have a very good lens I could use for macro work. Macro photos are some of my favorites, and this lens supposedly gives good results.

I'll post them once I get them.

Holy $#!% Batman!

Crazy. AND scary.

Some old pics.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Plug for a new site

I'm currently posting some of my photos at It's a new site set up with a broad range of topics. The Forums are where all the action is. Stop by if you get a chance.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Someday, maybe...

This is impressive. I'd like to be able to do stuff like this someday. Maybe I'll get the chance when I'm retired.

Thursday, January 18, 2007


I'm out of the 18-200mm's at the moment. I sold 12 the last day I had them. Would have sold more if I had more available. Feels pretty good. Now I just need to unload the Canons.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

New Toy

Well, I've wanted one of these since I first saw them. It looks like it's going to be a hit. Hillary was getting irritated with the home theater setup, and I must admit, I can't blame her. She could never figure out which input to use, which remote was causing the problem, etc. It was pretty complex. Now she just has to hit the "Watch Movie" button, and it plays a DVD. Or she can hit the "Watch TV" button for television. Pretty nice. It's going to work well.

Setup was a breeze, too. It automatically programs off of the internet. You plug the remote in using a USB cable, type in the model numbers of your equipment, and it does all the rest. No programming codes, no aiming remotes at each other, etc.

Retails for $150, I paid about $90 at cost at CompUSA. If I would have planned ahead, I would have picked one up from FatWallet.

If you have a home theater which involves at least a receiver, a TV, and a DVD player, I really think these are worth the money.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

More on the way.

I placed two orders for lenses totaling $45,000. Hope they come quickly. I could use the money. I've got a purchase coming up.

The Eagle Has Landed.

Here's the official Apple link. See the Keynote HERE. Trust me, it's worth it. See real life pics HERE and HERE. I can't post everything that I want to about this device, because I need to get to bed. I'll add more in the next day or two. I'll give you some highlights.

1. I loved my Treo this morning. Now it looks nasty.

2. It solves problems I didn't know I had.

3. It far exceeded all of my expectations, and is better than I thought possible.

4. I decided to switch to Cingular, even though I'm on contract with Sprint. Instant decision.

5. I truly think it has the potential to be one of the most significant developments in consumer electronics in a decade.

6. It appears that it will let me do things that I didn't dream I'd be able to do until years from now, and do them easily.

7. It is good to know that there are still more good ideas out there, waiting for someone to carry them through.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Also for sale: One slightly used 1997 Ford Thunderbird LX

It's been a good car, but I don't have room in the garage for another one. Here's the breakdown.

V8 Engine
Leather Seats
Good stereo with a Harman/Kardon iPod interface
Alarm System
Alloy Wheels

It's got 118,000 miles. I'm hoping to get as close to $3,500 as possible. Here's the Craigslist link. Pass the word if you know anyone who's interested.

For Sale: One slightly used Nikon D70 DSLR

Works great. Took most of the photos on my SmugMug page. Let me know if anyone's interested.

EDIT: Went for $405, plus $14.99 shipping. Someone got a deal.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

I almost forgot...

We bought a car. I'll put pictures up this weekend, if I get a chance.


I'm really getting into this eBay thing. I'm a Gold Powerseller now. I've been averaging almost $20,000 in business per month, lately, and it looks like it might be heating up even more.

It's really incredible. I would have never imagined this much money would be flowing through my bank account from eBay. I have to make sure I get it all straightened out with the IRS though. I don't want them thinking that the whole amount is profit, because it's not.

I'm working with a great product right now, but I need to be on the lookout for the next big thing. Dell pretty much went down the toilet for me over the last year, thanks to their decision to open retail outlets. It made every Dell product over 7% more expensive in many states overnight. It looks pretty certain that these lenses will lose their profitability too, eventually.

Well, as they say, strike while the iron is hot.

Hope Springs Eternal

Go Chiefs!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

I changed the template again.

What do you think?


I have a love/hate relationship with eBay. Right now I'm not pleased. eBay is jacking up their fees, while continuing to refuse to accept Google Checkout. When you do almost $20,000 per month in business on eBay, 7% in combined fees adds up quickly. If eBay really needed more money, that's one thing. They provide a great service which I benefit from financially.

PayPal, on the other hand, is a thorn in my side. I've spent thousands of dollars on PayPal fees, and have received very little in return. They provide essentially no protection for sellers, and are one of the most unresponsive companies to customer concerns that I've ever heard of.

The rub is that they're intricately linked, as eBay owns PayPal. eBay makes as much from me on PayPal fees as they do on the actual auction. I choose to use eBay because it's the best available option. I'm forced to use PayPal because eBay promotes it so heavily, and actively discourages the competition.

I would LOVE to find a way around PayPal. Any suggestions?