Saturday, November 28, 2009

I wonder if Tiger Woods will get the same treatment Rihanna got when it came to domestic violence? Somehow, I doubt Diane Sawyer will be interviewing him on Good Morning America about his injuries--at least, not with any sympathy.


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving! Hope all my readers enjoy the day and find it peaceful, relaxing and fun.


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

"...a warm greeting to a would-be robber eliminates psychological 'trigger points' "

I was reading an article in Forbes magazine today about the decline in bank robberies during the current recession. The reason: Wal-mart-sytle greetings:

Since 1979 the average number of bank robberies in the U.S. has been a dismaying 11 per 100 commercial bank branches. But in the past year, despite the recession, bank robberies are down to only 6 per 100. The industry gives lots of the credit to those overly friendly greeters who many banks have seemingly poached from Wal-Mart ( WMT - news - people ) stores.

Branches are now pressing guards, tellers and even branch managers to say hello and look every entering customer in the face. It makes customers feel welcome and crooks a bit intimidated. "The last thing a bank robber wants is to be noticed," says W. Douglas Johnson, head of security policy analysis at the American Bankers Association.

Using greeters to spook potential bank robbers has spread quickly since 2006, when a Seattle FBI agent, Lawrence Carr, included the idea in a widely disseminated program taught to bank security officers called SafeCatch. Carr, who spent five years studying bank robberies and interviewing crooks, argues that a warm greeting to a would-be robber eliminates psychological "trigger points"--confidence, anonymity, control over his fear--that the robber needs to go ahead with the crime.

I had noticed a warmer reception at banks lately. I just thought bankers had gotten friendlier but I guess they are just hoping you won't rob the place.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Darn it: I'm getting a mammogram

I wasn't going to get one this year. I am in my forties and started getting mammograms in my thirties, thanks to a family history of cancer. But it's been awhile and I was going to put it off this year but I figure with all that is going on in the healthcare debate, mammograms might be rationed or just not available for many of us.

And, contrarian that I am, I figured that by going against the just released recommendations, I'm going get all the healthcare I desire, cause, at this point, I can. So to all you contrarians like me out there who were thinking of putting off a mammogram, I say, schedule that appointment ASAP. For who knows how long before ObamaCare makes this medical test a thing of the past?

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"Your right to bring your screaming child on a plane ends where the rest of our ears begin."

Amy Alkon, author of I See Rude People: One woman's battle to beat some manners into impolite society, has an op-ed out in the LA Times about screaming kids on planes:

More and more, we're all victims of these many small muggings every day. Our perp doesn't wear a ski mask or carry a gun; he wears Dockers and shouts into his iPhone in the line behind us at Starbucks, streaming his dull life into our brains, never considering for a moment whether our attention belongs to him. These little acts of social thuggery are inconsequential in and of themselves, but they add up -- wearing away at our patience and good nature and making our daily lives feel like one big wrestling smackdown.

Southwest sent the right message in yanking Root and her screaming boy off the plane. Unfortunately, it lacked the corporate courage to stand its ground, probably fearing a public relations nightmare from the Mommy Mafia. Yet, almost every day, I encounter parents who need to get the same message Root initially did. Trust me -- should I long to hear screaming children, I'll zip right past my favorite coffeehouse and go read my morning paper at Chuck E. Cheese.

I tend to have some sympathy for parents who have crying kids. Those of us who are parents as well as others who are not understand that kids cry sometimes. What I don't have sympathy for are parents who in no way discipline their children while out in public. While I understand that parent's rights to discipline are limited given that the state interferes at times when a parent does discipline, I don't think the solution is to do nothing. I have seen parents who allow kids to do very harmful and terrible things in public and then wonder why the kid turns out to be such an ass when he or she gets older. If a kid does not understand how to act in certain settings, teach him or her or don't put them in that setting until they are older. The world will be a better (and quieter) place.

What do you think, screaming kids allowed on planes or not? I would also love to hear any stories you have about kids who have acted up in public and whether or not you said or did anything.

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Monday, November 23, 2009

I was just reading about Black Friday on CNBC and it seems that many people have less interest in shopping that day:

A survey by Persuadable Research for online shopping guide, however, found just 46 percent of respondents plan to “definitely” shop on Black Friday this year, a 12 percent drop from those who took to the stores in 2008....

The survey by Persuadable Research found a majority of shoppers (59 percent) say they would rather shop online for Black Friday deals this year than fight the crowds.

I was never a big fan of Black Friday and can't imagine fighting crowds to get a few gifts. I've already done most of my shopping online. What about you?