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This and that

Greetings, one and all....thanks for stopping by.  Just a few stray thoughts to capture before getting into the work day.

Just back from a quick-turnaround trip to the northern Virginia area, where I saw an airport, a hotel, and a shuttle van.  When I say "quick," I really mean it!  Actually, my sole purpose for traveling there was to interview a candidate for a position on my sales team, so the trip was useful for that purpose.  With a little luck that was my last overnight business trip of 2012.  Cross your fingers.

During my travels, as so often happens, I noticed one or two things of interest.  First, in the Atlanta airport the PA system is playing very traditional Christmas music.   I have to confess to being a bit of a stick in the mud when it comes to holiday tunes.  Not that contemporary singers don't have something to say by reinterpreting "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" but there are older versions, most likely those  that I grew up hearing, that I like better.  It gave me the greatest delight to note to hear Bing Crosby singing for hurrying airline passengers in Atlanta yesterday.

Also, I don't know if it's me, or people are channeling their inner Alec Baldwin, but lately I've noticed a  growing number of passengers on airplanes who simply disregard all of the requests (and eventually demands) to discontinue the use of electronic devices after the plane's boarding door has closed, or after  falling below the requisite altitude.  Case in point:  guy sitting in my row yesterday plugged his headphones into his iPhone before the boarding door closed, and was clearly listening to music because   HE WAS SINGING ALONG, albeit softly.  This continued all the way through until we were preparing for landing (actually, the service crew was preparing....I don't think "we" were) and a flight attendant stopped by to ask if he was "logged off."  He asked her to repeat her question, then, honest to God, actually said "Why?"  Guy knew what he was doing, obviously, and grumbled noticeably when he powered off his phone.  I suppose if you get away with it often enough that you come to think that you can ALWAYS get away with it!

Mitt Romney is to be President Obama's guest for lunch at the White House today.  Wouldn't you love to be a fly on the wall to hear that conversation?

Did you buy Powerball tickets this week?  We did, only do so every year or so, when the jackpots are so absurdly large that you almost have to buy them, but we were again losers.  Voltaire once wrote that lotteries are a tax on stupidity, and given the astronomical odds of winning, perhaps he was right.  But yet two people apparently bought winning tickets, so I suppose they're smart and the rest of us aren't.  In conjunction with the publicity surrounding this jackpot there were a lot of articles here and there about how winning the lottery has ruined many people's lives.  Somehow I don't think I'd mind finding out firsthand whether this is true.

My wife and I got our house decorated for Christmas last weekend, finishing up Monday night.  Gradual and painless process, but important in our family to have this completed to enjoy for the month of December.  So we're ahead of schedule due to Thanksgiving being early this year.

Speaking of which, our son borrowed a friend's Weber Smokey Mountain smoker and prepared a wonderful smoked turkey to enjoy on Thanksgiving this year.  I highly recommend this, as there's just nothing better than well-smoked meat.

I've leave you with a thought about managing one's e-mail, particularly work-related e-mail.  Google the phrase "inbox zero" and you'll find some very interesting information about how to handle incoming messages.  Turns out I've been doing this right for a while, so I'll continue to pat myself on the back while you research this.  Have a good one!


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