The View From The Golden Dome

Views on the week's events plus some of mine.

Les Berman Weekly #478 5 year old. Importance of Children. Zebras. Flying Birds…. and much much more.


One of the more interesting articles that I’ve read this week tells about the five (5) year old boy who was playing with his dad’s XBox. The dad, not having allowed the little guy to play with the XBox, was a little surprised, and asked his son how he got into the game console. The 5 year old promptly showed his dad how he hacked into the game console system in about two minutes. Being good people, they told Microsoft, the developer of the Xbox. how a five year old could hack in. And Microsoft fixed the bug, and sent the 5 year old a bunch of games and a one year subscription to something I don’t understand.

 

The moral of the story is simple : if you are having any kind of cell phone, tablet, or computer issue, you can usually get an answer now from a 5 year old, and almost always from a 7 year old. This, friends, is why children and grandchildren are extremely important to those of us who can’t find the ‘on’ switch.

 

Meanwhile, in the science world, researchers have discovered why zebras have stripes. I know you have wondered if zebras are black with white stripes, or white with black stripes. I am sure that you asked your parents and grandparents, your teachers, and anyone else over the age of twelve for the answer to that question. People have experimented with painting horses in stripes to see if the offspring would be born with stripes, but I think that was more likely to have happened in Appalachia, or some other states south of the Mason-Dixon line. These people were definitely not schooled in the science of animal husbandry. And while we’re on that topic, why is it called animal husbandry? Did the people who came up with that term, know something that we don’t want to know.

 

Anyway, the paint experiments didn’t work. But what the researchers did find, is that the stripes confused the biting insects, like tabanid biting flies and tsetse flies, that are so common, and vicious, on the plains of Africa. The bugs are confused by the stripes, and leave the zebra alone. Some striped antelope are also relieved of the bug plague too. Of course, the zebra spokesman, in giving the results of the study to the herds of his pals, also said that if the researchers had really wanted to help, they would have come up with something that also would confuse lions.

 

And scientists have recently discovered why larger birds fly in a V formation, and why smaller birds fly in swarms. They fly in swarms to confuse predators who have to focus on a target for accuracy. If you watch dolphin or whale shows on tv, they show how small fish do the same thing. Of course, then comes a whale with an open mouth and there goes that fish swarm.

The V formation is used because it conserves energy. The wings each create some kind of upwash, or draft, and the following birds have less resistance. Also, because birds can’t spell very well, they avoided the bar in A and E formations.

 

The Census Bureau reported that in 2012, 22 million people worked for federal, state, and local governments. So now you know where your tax money is going – you’re paying the salaries of all of those people, some of whom actually work hard, others do hard work, and the rest… you make the decision.

 

Remember, if you need money for any legitimate reason – business purchase or expansion, real estate purchase or refinance, or if you’re buying a home, call the guy with the shiny golden dome – me !! themagic number 818.305.4695.

 

Have a better week.

Les

Berman’s Factoids of the Week:

QUESTIONS THAT HAUNT ME!

Why do they call it an asteroid when it’s outside the hemisphere, but call it a hemorrhoid when it’s in your butt? (you might have to think about thisone)!

Why do banks charge a fee on ‘insufficient funds’ when they know there is not enough money?

Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog’s face, he gets mad at you, but when you take him for a car ride, he sticks his head out the window?
Why do we press harder on a remote control when we know the batteries are getting dead?

Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?

 

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 Les Berman CMC
      Business and Real Estate Loan Specialist
       
Voice: 818.305.4695

 

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June 18, 2014 Posted by | business, fun, general interest, humor, real estate, sports, stuff, Uncategorized, whimsy | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Les Berman Weekly #476 Sales or Marketing? Flap? Rockfish? 70% Better… and so many more questions…


On occasion, people will interchange the words “sales” and “marketing”. So, to end the confusion, partially, I will refer you to the grocery store ads for this week in the Los Angeles area. The food ads are all about marketing.

 

One of the stores was featuring boneless flap meat. Not being familiar with the term, I decided I better investigate. Now that term, flap meat, seems sort of gross. Flap meat. Would you use that to slap someone? That’s the image it presents. In an article from 2005, it is described as an unflatteringly named cut that comes from the less tender regions of the animal. Since then it has been described in other ways but it is a tough piece of meat that can be flavorful if cooked properly. So why wouldn’t the beef industry give it an attractive name, like sirloin tip. Oh darn.. that’s what it used to be called before the flappers got involved.

 

Moving right along, I notice that rockfish is on sale. That is such a plain name that not even the venerable Wikipedia has an explanation for that one. So other market names in accordance with FDA rules are Pacific red snapper, rock cod, black bass, and Pacific ocean perch. And there are about 70 different kinds of fish that come under that one name. And the article says that it’s not fraud because the FDA approves it.

 

The FDA approves it ?! So the same agency that prevents us from having medicines in common use in other countries; and the same agency that approves genetically modified foods for human consumption, allows multiple names for the same product to confuse the consumer. The industry therefore, is allowed to change the names to “fraudulently” confuse the public and avoid prosecution because a government agency allows it. This is marketing !

 

Then I saw an ad for Boar’s Head Blazing Buffalo Chicken Breast. That is so straightforward. For the uninformed, perhaps that would be a mixture of pig meat, burnt buffalo, and part of a chicken. Do we know better? I’m not sure.

 

I had a product a while back, I believe it was a non-stick food spray, that had a slogan emblazoned on the package – 70% better. No asterisk, no referral to something else on the container. It just said 70% better. I wondered about that and it gave me time to reflect on what it could be better than. I wondered if it was better than butter, or extra virgin olive oil (where do they find the extra virgins please), or if it was better than flap meat or a mixture of pig meat, burned buffalo etc. No conclusion on this guessing game.

 

At the other end of the marketing spectrum, one store was featuring red apples. Other stores featured galas, delicious, Fuji or Granny Smith. I know those brands because the apple (not the phone / computer / tablet apple) people have been promoting those apple types forever. I don’t know – red just is not descriptive enough. But it is better than wormy !

 

And then there is that marketing classic – imitation crab meat. Amazing – they tell the truth and then sell tons of the product. I’ve had the imitation stuff and real crab. The fake doesn’t taste anything like the real one – not even close ! All of this creative marketing is convincing me to become vegetarian. Well… maybe just to eat more vegetables… maybe !

The difference is that sales people sell what the marketing people conjure up !

And then there is the couple in Wyoming who got a permit to build a pond on their property. It provides water for their horses, stocked it with trout, and brought in their ducks and geese. And this was done with a state permit. They complete everything and get a letter from a state agency saying they did everything properly. Yup, then they get a letter from the Feds threatening a fine of $75,000 / day for violating federal law. Hmm.. that seems like a cluster thing. So the latest is that he has federal politicians telling the federal agency to…go away. And they might never be able to eat real fish… by any name.

 

And this is your call to action – financing for small business, real estate loans – residential and private money. Call the magic number 818.305.4695

Have a better week.

Les

Berman’s Factoids of the Week:

Why do doctors leave the room while you change? They’re going to see you naked anyway…

Why is ‘bra’ singular and ‘panties’ plural?

If electricity comes from electrons, does morality come from morons?

Why do toasters always have a setting that burns the toast to a horrible crisp, which no decent human being would eat?

If Jimmy cracks corn and no one cares, why is there a stupid song about him?

 

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Read and Follow Les Berman on the Web

 Les Berman CMC
      Business and Real Estate Loan Specialist
       
Voice: 818.305.4695
Email: les@lesberman.com

 

June 17, 2014 Posted by | business, fun, general interest, humor, medicine, stuff, Uncategorized, whimsy | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment