How I Became a Hippy

It all started with a video on YouTube of a guy in India getting his ears cleaned. Have you ever run across any of those impacted earwax videos? Man, talk about disgusting, yet at the same time intriguing, like a car accident, you don’t really want to look…..but you just have to. If you haven’t seen one of these videos, trust me, watch one, it’ll change your life. Anyway, I’m watching this Indian doctor pulling these super large chunks of impacted earwax out of this guys ear. With each pull of the hemostats I felt a rush of disgust, a rush of relief, because that had to feel good to the guy, and also a bit of paranoia. “Jesus!!! Are my ears like that?”   I shower every day………..for the most part. I use soap and water on my ears then Q-Tips after the shower. Nothing too disgusting ever comes out, but I do get a bit of a light yellow waxy residue. But am I cleaning my ears the correct way? I’ve been doing this for close to half a century. Surely even with correct cleaning there has to be some build up. How can I get a good ear cleaning without going to the doctor? Google will tell me!!

So I head over to Google and search “How to clean your ears”. I avoid any URL’s that look like tree hugging bullpucky and look for ones that are to medical pages. So, I get this Web MD page and, to my surprise, it says that you should never use Q-Tips in your ears. A variety of reasons really, one being you could go in too deep and injure your eardrum. Another reason is that when you stick a Q-Tip into your ear, it actually pushes wax down into the ear canal and can cause exactly what we’re trying to avoid. The Web MD page suggested just using warm water, warmer than body temperature,  so it can melt the wax and let it run out on it’s own. That got me to thinking about when I was a kid. Every summer, anytime you’d go to clean your ears, they’d be spotless…..because you had been in the pool all day and the water and chlorine basically ran everything out of there. Time to give it a try.

From that point I decided to stop using Q-Tips for a test period of 2 weeks. My plan was to use the warm stream from the shower head and point it into my ears, let it run for about 30 seconds, then leave it at that. I was not to check my ears with anything for 2 weeks. So, that is exactly what I did. I’d turn the temp of the water up so it was warmer than body temp, run the jet stream into my ears for about 30 seconds, and that was that. After 2 weeks I got a Q-Tip and was surprised to find that absolutely nothing came out. My ears were spotlessly clean. That was the day that I stopped using Q-tips on my ears. It’s been over 3 years now. I get the occasional paranoid feeling that I just have to have a bunch of gunk in my ears so I grab a Q-Tip, nothing, as clean as when it went in.

But does this make me a hippy? Not really, but I’m not finished. A girl I went to school with posted on Facebook that she was stopping using soap, shampoo, and deodorant. Yes, my reaction to that was probably just like yours “Ugggghhhh!” Disgusting, right? Well, I needed something to tell me why people do this. Google here I come again. I started reading up on using soap, shampoo, and deodorant and what they do to your body. I mean, if you really think about it, within the confines of the history of man being on this earth, soap, shampoo, and deodorant was invented 10 minutes ago. Man was not created with the thought of those things being needed. Nature takes care of itself, we know that, we’ve seen it. So why would the human body be any different? I wasn’t ready to jump in head first, but I was tempted to try. This is when I decided to see what would happen if I stopped using deodorant. The Web MD page I read said that a lot of the armpit smell comes from your body trying to get rid of the chemicals from the deodorant. Interesting. It said to give it at least 4 or 5 days to get rid of anything that had already been on there. So, that’s what I did. The first 4 or 5 days were interesting. I had some pretty bad pits going, but I was wiping down everyday and wearing 2 shirts to help conceal it. Oddly enough, after the first week, the odor I was getting from my armpits was way less than the odor I was getting when I was wearing deodorant. I just smelled like me. It wasn’t really offensive. So, I continued down that road. It’s been over 2 years now since I’ve worn deodorant. Trust me, if I smelled, my wife would be the first to tell me. I honestly don’t have much of a pit smell anymore. Granted, if I go 2 days without a shower, yeah, they start humming a bit, but a daily shower keeps me going just fine. Am I hippy? Getting there. Shampoo is next.

Not using Q-Tips or deodorant surprised me to no end so shampoo had to be the next challenge. Could I go 2 weeks without washing my hair? I’d wet it down in the shower, I just wouldn’t use any soap or conditioners on it. Why? Well, Web MD says we spend billions annually on shampoos to remove the natural oils from our hair, then more billions on moisturizers and conditioners to put oils right back on our hair. Does that make any sense? I gotta give it a try. So, I stopped. The first 3 or 4 days my hair took on a dry, grassy feel. After about a week or so it became manageable, then after about 3 weeks my regular soft hair was back to normal, and the only thing I had used on it was warm water in the shower. Did I mention that my dandruff was gone too? Something I had been fighting since high school totally disappeared. Sold……for a while. I probably went about 6 months without using shampoo, but, I just never mentally felt right about it. I started using shampoo again and my dandruff came back. I’m willing to put up with a little dandruff for the peace of mind that I’m using shampoo. I’m still sold on the idea that you can get away without it if you want to. You just gotta give your body time to get the shampoo out of it’s system and let your hair heal.

Last but not least, soap. Ok, I decided to go the no soap route. That lasted about 3 days. I just couldn’t wrap my had around not at least using soap when you shower. I don’t know, if I was able to last a little longer things may have changed, I don’t know, all I do know is that I love my Coast and don’t need crotch gravy.

So, am I hippy? I’d say partially.

Y’all come back, I’ll leave a light on for ya.







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The Day Opie Came Home


My wife and I have been wanting a dog for years, but, because of our work, we just didn’t have the time to commit what we thought was needed to raise a healthy and happy pup.

I’m a school teacher. I teach English as a second language to elementary school kids here in Japan. I am the first and second grade teacher. The kids are awesome! Anyway, last year I decided that I wasn’t going anywhere staying where I was, so, I resigned my full time position down to part time and started my own language school out of my house. I hate to say that I haven’t expanded as much as I would have liked over the past 2 years, but, I won’t give up. Anyway, with my new position at the school I only teach a few hours in the morning then I’m back home by 1:00 in the afternoon. So, we decided to move ahead with the addition of a pup.

From the beginning a Toy Poodle was the only option for us. My family has been Toy Poodles for as long as I can remember. My last 2 dogs were black female toys. This time around, what did I want? A black female toy. So, we head out with all the local pet shops mapped out. The very first place we went to, there was Opie, a red male. Totally not what I wanted. For my wife, this would be her first dog. I told her before we went shopping “Don’t just jump on the first cute thing you see. The dog that belongs with us will speak to us in some way. Keep your eyes open. When you feel that connection, that’s the one.” So there’s Opie. I asked the lady if I could hold him and she brought him out. I fell in love with him on the spot, but in the back of my head I had a black female. I was willing to concede the color, but not the sex. I told this to the lady at the shop and said we would pass on Opie, and we left. We went around to various shops, and even came across quite a few black females, but I couldn’t get Opie out of my head. None of these other pups were really getting to me. A few days later I said to my wife, let’s go back to that first shop, so we did. We went in and Opie was still there. I got him out again and played with him for a bit. The problem we were looking at now was price.

The first day we met Opie he was on sale for roughly 500 dollars. It was the weekend and they choose certain dogs to put on half price sale on the weekends. Well, Opie was back to a thousand dollars. Remember I told you that my business hasn’t taken off as I had expected? Yeah, can’t really afford a grand for a dog. I asked the lady if he would be on sale again and she said she didn’t know, it was up to the head office. I jokingly told her to call them and tell them he should be on sale. We played around with him a bit more and then left with the thought in mind that the sale wouldn’t happen. This was a Monday. Anyway, on Thursday I said to my wife “Let’s go back to that shop just to look. They may get the impression that we’re serious and put him on sale again. Bottom line is that this is a business and they need to move stock. Kind of cold to think of it like that, but facts are facts. Anyway, if they see that we’re serious, they may do something. So we go back, walk in, the first words out of the lady’s mouth were “Do you want to hold him?” and she went and brought him out. I played with him for a few minutes then I asked her “What about the price?” she smiled and gave us the universal “OK” sign. I gave my wife the keys and sent her to the bank to get the money.

The shop had one request for us. Opie had a slight bit of dandruff and they wanted to keep him for a week to shampoo, brush, etc… to see if they could get rid of the flakes. We said OK. That following week we were going to the pet shop every single day to spend time with him. We’d go up about 45 minutes or an hour before closing time and sit on the sofa playing with our new boy. We had already named him so we figured going to the shop everyday to see him, using his name, letting him get used to us being around, etc… etc… may ease his transition when we finally took him home……and of course we were just head over heels in love with him and wanted to spend as much time with him as we could.

We were scheduled to pick him up on a Sunday morning when they opened at 10:30. That Friday before, my wife was working late and couldn’t go to the shop so I went on my own. While I was there they asked me if we could delay pickup until around 2:00 when all of the relative networks would be online. I wasn’t too happy about that, but what could I do. We’ve waited this long, a few more hours won’t hurt.

Sunday comes and we go to pick him up. It was a 3 hour process of them checking us, filling out papers, getting counseled on owning a dog, blah blah blah blah blah. Finally, they needed to send an email to my wife’s phone so she could confirm something. They sent it and it never came through. Sent it again and it didn’t come through. By this time I’m at my limit, I just want to get out of there. I slap the table and said “We’re done!!! Send whatever you have to send by snail mail, we’re going home” and we wrapped things up and headed out.

We got here to the house and introduced Opie to his new home, his cage, his water bottle, food bowl, toys, etc… We played around with him for a bit then my wife had to go to her mother’s house and she left me with the boy. Opie and I played around for a bit and then I realized that he really should get some sleep so I put him in his cage and then I lied down next to it and put my finger through the bars. He was exhausted. He laid down right in front of me, slowly put his head down on the towel, with his nose up against my finger, and he slowly crept off to la la land. I stayed there with him for a good half hour until my wife came home. I motioned for her to be quiet when she came in. She crept into the room and sat down with us and, having the three of us together in this quiet moment, I just fell to pieces crying. I’m not exactly sure what it was. I guess it was a culmination of everything that had happened and finally having him here, knowing that he’s in a loving home and not in that tiny little viewing box at the pet shop. Knowing that he’s going to be spoiled to death and never have to worry about having a family that loves him. I literally cried like a baby. I couldn’t turn the tears off, hell, I’m getting watery eyed now just thinking about it.

Anyway, that’s the story of the day Opie came home. He has been such a great addition to this house. My wife and I have a strange relationship in that we’ve been together close to 20 years and are still on our honeymoon. We do everything together. We’re best friends. I swear to God I can count on both hands how many arguments we’ve been in over the past 2 decades. We just don’t fight. I’m guessing it’s because we never had kids. We’ve been able to devote our time to each other without any distractions. Opie has ramped our lives up a billion percent. I’m really glad he’s here.

Y’all come back, I’ll leave the light on for ya.

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Remembering Shachou

Hello, all. I apologize for not posting for such a long time. Something is happening this weekend that got me thinking about something I’d like to share with you. Grab a cup of coffee and get settled in, this one’s gonna take a little time.

I came to Japan in Feb. of 1991. At the time I was REALLY into playing billiards and my first full day here that is what I did, I searched for a billiards shop and went there. Before too long I was meeting the local guys my age that played. One guy that I met was a long hair, thin, wiry looking fella with a really handsome face. His name was/is Yuichi. As we got to know each other over the coming months we learned that we both liked the same kinds of music. He told me that he played guitar. I had a little background with the guitar. I wasn’t very good, but I enjoyed it immensely. Anyway, one day we were at the billiards parlour and Yuichi told me that he was going down to the guitar shop to pick up some strings and asked me if I’d like to go along for the ride. Sure, why wouldn’t I? So, he took me to this little shop in town called Music Town Rasta. The shop was small, but it was filled with all kinds of really cool vintage guitars, nice amps, etc… etc… This was no place for someone looking to pick up a cheap beater, the goods were in here. Imagine the world famous Norman’s….in Japan.

Anywho, the owner of the shop greeted us when we came in. Yuichi seemed to be a regular customer in there and was very comfortable just pulling up a chair at the counter and shooting the bull. The owner seemed really interested in me. He loved America, he went there at least once a year to buy guitars……and he frequented Norman’s now that I think about it. Along with his love for America he was really into American football. I too am a HUGE fan of American football so we hit it off real quick. Before too long, I too was a regular customer of the shop. Many, many days just going in to hangout for the day. The owner’s name was Takashi, but everyone called him “Shachou”, that is word the Japanese use for “President”….of a company, not like the President of the US.

As the days turned into weeks, the weeks into months, and the months into years, Shachou and I became good friends. Some mornings he’d give me a call and we’d go hit the pool and get some swimming in before going to open the shop. I knew his family and I even taught his daughter English for a while. I spent a lot of time in that shop. I always got to mess around with guitars that most people only dream about. I could kick myself for not buying that ’68 Les Paul Black Beauty he had for 3,000 dollars. I couldn’t even look at one of those for that price nowadays.

Oh, a little side story. In the shop he had this drum throne that he kept back amongst the guitars. If you wanted to play a guitar or test an amp you could sit on that drum chair. The only down side to that was that the frickin’ thing was broken underneath. Whenever you’d pick it up by the seat part of it it would come off the post and you’d be left with a round drum seat in your hand and the rest of it was on the floor. I always bitched at him to get rid of that piece of crap and get a new chair. He wouldn’t have any of that talk though. “No reason to waste money” he would say. “You’ve been here long enough to know it comes apart, stop picking it up like that”. hahaha!!

Hanging out at the shop all the time I got to watch him working on guitars. Eventually I just flat out asked him “Hey, can you show me how to change a pickup?” It was there that my lifetime, so far at least, love for tinkering around the innards of a guitar started. Whenever I’d see something I didn’t know I’d just ask him to show me how to do it and he would. The majority of tinkering I would do would be on my own guitars. Eventually though, when a customer would bring in something to be fixed, he would turn it over to me and he’d stand there and watch me and give me tips on how to make it better. One day he was getting ready to run out for a little bit to get a few errands taken care of when a customer came in with a 50’s Tele that he wanted the soldering to be touched up a bit. Shachou, without skipping a beat, told him that he needed to go out for a while, then he turned to me and said “Jim, take care of this”. I didn’t work there, I was just a customer, but he was leaving the store with me in charge and handing me a guitar that costs more than my house and wanted me to do the repairs on it. He told me to go over it and make sure the neck was straight, screws tightened, check all the connections etc…. and fix up whatever needed to be done. He said if I come across something I didn’t know, just set it aside and he’d take care of it later. I had arrived.

Fast forward 14 years. I went into the shop one day and he was sitting there playing his guitar, he had a Sonic Stratocaster, pearl green body, maple neck, ebony fingerboard, no fret markers. Anyway, he was sitting there playing through a Fender Blues Jr that had come in a few days before. The sound of that amp was incredible. Of course his playing had a lot to do with that too. Anyway, I really liked the sound of that amp so I asked him “how much is this going for?” and he said “It’s not for sale. I like it so much I’m gonna keep it here.” I told him I’d buy it but he said “no way.” Later that evening when I was going home I was heading across the parking lot to my car when I heard him call my name. “Hey, Jim, come back here” So, I went back in. He said “Take it, it’s yours”. I was like “Really, how much?” and he said “Nothing, just take it. It’s yours”. Damn, Shachou, that’a awfully generous. He carried it out and put it in my car. That’s how I got my Blues Jr.

About 2 weeks after the Blues Jr. incident I was coming in from work on a Friday evening when my friend, we call him Dr. T, called me. Dr. T and I are guitar buddies. We’ve gigged together quite a bit and he’s someone that I consider a really dear friend. Anyway, Dr. T calls me and he says “Jim, Shachou died today”. It felt like someone kicked me in the stomach. “What?? He’s only 49 years old!!”. Dr. T told me that everyone was at the shop so I jumped in my car and ran down there. Turns out that he was at home that morning watching a baseball game lying on the sofa. His wife came in and told him he should probably get ready for work, the shop opened at noon. He said “OK”, stood up from the sofa, raised his arms above his head to stretch, had a massive coronary, and dropped dead where he was standing. From all accounts he was dead before he hit the floor.

I get to the shop and it was a madhouse. Shachou wasn’t very good at keeping records and there were a bunch of people there that had guitars out for refinishes, or orders that had been placed and partially paid for….it was a mess. I can understand their feelings, but, can you at least let the body get cold before doing this shit? We spent the rest of the evening there trying to get things in order. It was an insurmountable task and I was getting pissed off more and more when someone would say something about possibly getting screwed out of money. My thought was “hey, let’s wait until after the funeral to take care of this”. Needless to say there were some people that showed their true colors that evening and I, in turn, cut them out of my life.

We just passed the 10th anniversary of his death in April. This coming Saturday night we are having a tribute live show to remember Shachou. 5 bands joining consisting of people that used to hang out there regularly. My band seems to be the main event of the night. I usually do an EVH style solo spot in our shows but this time I’m going to take that time to talk a little about Shachou, he deserves it. His wife has since moved out of their house and I don’t know where she went. If I could get a hold of her I’d like to borrow his guitar and have it on stage with us. No way to find her though.

Anyway, that’s my story. I hope I didn’t bore you with it. This Saturday, if you remember, about 9:00pm Japan time, give a little nod to the heavens for Shachou. I know you guys would have loved him.

Y’all come back, I’ll leave the light on for ya.


P.S. As I was leaving the shop that night, I grabbed the drum throne. It’s up in my room next to my desk. I’ll never get rid of it.

P.P.S. Remember Yuichi from earlier? He’s the bassist in my current band. All these years later and we’re still friends.

L to R: Yuichi, me, Koji


Poster for the Tribute show. Rest in Peace, old friend.


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2013 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 4,700 times in 2013. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 4 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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It All Started With A Cap Gun

On more than one occasion I can be quoted as saying that America has wussified itself to the point that I can’t wrap my head around how kids have any fun these days. I mean, I understand that we should take extra measures to protect children, but in reality, there is a certain number of kids that just have to get hurt *AND* there’s sort of a rite of passage that comes with doing dangerous things when you’re a kid.

It all started with a cap gun. I was going through Facebook today and came across a post by a friend of mine. You know the posts, the “if you grew up in the 80’s….” and there’s a picture of some board game like Chutes and Ladders, or characters from TV like Erkl….why the hell did I choose Erkl? Anyway, I usually pass those things up because, well, a lot of those things from the past deserve to stay right where they are, in the past. I don’t really get a sense of nostalgia looking at them. But today was different. He had posted a picture of a cap gun. Man, that right there got the memories rolling. Cap guns were bad to the bone. Remember you’d get that roll of caps and go shooting after each other? Or better yet, take the caps and smash them with a rock? How about scraping them with a rock or a knife until they fizzled about a butt hair away from your finger and left a burn blister? And we were stupid enough to do it again with our unburnt fingers until they were all blistered and aching.

Talking about the cap guns of course turned into a conversation on all the other stupid, read “dangerous” stuff we did as kids. Now, I’m not trying to teach anyone how to do this, and I suggest that you don’t, but anyone my age will remember taking 3 or 4 empty tin beer cans, cutting one end off of one of them, then cutting both ends off the rest of them, duct tape them together, cut some holes in the bottom and an exhaust hole on the side, pour in some gasoline, drop in a tennis ball, strike a match and “BOOM” instant canon. My uncle Terry taught me to do that before I was even 10 years old. HA!!

Then there was always the one kid in the neighborhood that tore apart the lawn mower and built a go-cart with the engine. Of course, as soon as he had it out on the street the genius in us took over. I mean, if you have a go-cart you gotta have a ramp. So, we’d hit up someplace where homes were being built……it seems like homes were always being built when I was a kid, anyway, you’d hit one of those construction sites, peel yourself off a couple sheets of plywood, and drag them back to the neighborhood. Then, if making a ramp so you could jump a lawn mower engine powered go-cart wasn’t brilliant enough, you propped that ramp up with a single row of bricks, stacked like 5 or 6 high. That ramp would be all wobbly and as soon as the first person tried it the bricks would fall as soon as the go-cart hit the ramp, then you’d get this pathetic….hop off with two wheels, swerve all over the damn street and, God forbid, try not to slam into a neighbor’s car, or swerve the other way and run into your friends, although they were safe because they saw your ass coming and were hauling it out of there in every direction.

I basically told that same story on FB when my friend Rob replied with

“Two words: Lawn Dart. Wait, three words: Lawn Dart Chicken. We used to throw them straight up into the air and wait to see who would run for cover first.

Every toy I seemed to own as a kid had a DC motor or a heating element designed to leave me with electrical burns or just plain old burny-burns.

Of course, we learned young what danger looks like. A few cuts and burns and puncture marks and you start getting a finely-tuned sense of what danger looks, smells and tastes like.”

Lawn darts, or Jarts as we called them in the Cincinnati area, and heating elements were a staple of our youth. We’d be at my grandma’s house and my dad and uncle would be playing Jarts in the back yard. Once they got bored and went in the fun really started. I remember one time a friend of mine that lived in my grandma’s neighborhood got a Jart stuck in his shin. I honestly don’t remember if I was the one that threw it at him or not, but it wouldn’t surprise me to find out that it was. haha!!

As we got older the ante was upped. Around 10 or so someone inevitably gets a minibike. Is the minibike an opportunity to learn safety and responsibility? Is it a chance to get out on the dirt lot and tool around? Hell no, a minibike means one of two things, more ramps or a rope and a skateboard. To this day, my left forearm is slightly discolored from being dragged about 15-20 feet. I wrapped that rope nice and tight around my wrist, stood on the skateboard ready to make history, he hit the gas, I went straight down and got dragged screaming like a little girl. I was picking gravel out of my arm for a week after that. Needless to say, mom wasn’t impressed.

Finding a gallon of gasoline in the garage and a box of matches, or a lighter, gave you the instant thought of “what can I set on fire”? Ever fill an empty coffee can halfway up or so and toss in a match? Why were gasoline and lighter fluid so intriguing? Even as a kid you’re smart enough to know that a wrong move with that could kill you. What possessed us to do it? I mean, we never burnt down houses or set forest fires or any shit like that, but we’d do ignorant shit like spell our names on the street and light it. Idiots!!

Which of course leads us to fireworks. Summer wasn’t summer without getting your hands on some fireworks. Ohio and Kentucky were pretty strict on fireworks laws so you really couldn’t buy much more than sparklers or snakes, remember those things? But, the great state of Tennessee, the home of Elvis Presley, was totally open. A quick 4 hour ride down I-75 would get you across the border and you’d be able to pick up the good stuff. Granted, we were just kids, and couldn’t drive, but there were always the older brothers around the neighborhood that would make the trek. They’d come back with a trunk full of stuff, enough to get them jailed if they were caught. Huge bricks of firecrackers, bottle rockets, Roman candles, M-80’s, you name it. M-80’s, remember those? Weren’t they something like a quarter stick of dynamite or something like that. Summer called for blowing shit up. Again, we didn’t set any houses on fire or cause forest fires, but we surely didn’t mind having roman candle wars using garbage can lids as shields. The local elementary school sat on this main road up on this little hill. There was this exercise area that had outdoor wood equipment. We’d sit up there at night and shoot bottle rockets at cars going past. On more than one occasion we had the joy of running from some pissed off old man or, God forbid, a guy in his twenties that could catch us. We never did get caught, but we sure had some close calls. Why did we go back?

Anyway, like I said above, I can be quoted as saying that America has been wussified. In my heart of hearts I wouldn’t trade one moment of my childhood, and I’d probably do it all over again if I could, but maybe they’re right, or at least partially right, in keeping kids away from that stuff. It’s amazing that we weren’t badly injured or killed.

Any young people out there reading this, this should not be used as a textbook of how to set shit on fire or blow things up. I’m just recounting my youth. You guys stay safe out there.

That’s all I have for now. If you were a kid of the 70’s early 80’s, what kind of crazy crap did you do? I’d love to hear it.

Y’all come back, I’ll leave the light on for ya.


Posted in Things I think about | 5 Comments

YouTube Comments Update, Don’t Panic!!




Ok, as almost all of you have noticed by now there have been some MAJOR changes around YouTube and Google + over the last 24 hours or so. First thing you may have noticed is that you can’t respond to comments. Here’s the skinny on that. Any comments that were left BEFORE this change went into effect are basically dead, you can NOT reply to them, even if the comment was left 1 minute before the change set in. The old comments system isn’t compatible with whatever they are implementing. You CAN reply to any comments that were left AFTER the change took effect, so basically anything that was left within the last 24 hours or so. This does not mean that your old videos are dead in the water….only their current comments are. If anyone leaves a new comment from here on out you will be able to reply to it. Now, whether they are going to integrate the old comments into the new is a mystery. They haven’t insinuated one way or the other. So, if you have comments that were posted the night before last that you hadn’t gotten around to, too late.

Now, I do have a little workaround for you if you’d like to reply to an old comment. You won’t be able to reply directly from that comment, but, in the comment window put a + sign in front of the name of whoever you want to reply to and they will get the message. For example, if I was wanting to reply to Kurt Bell I would write his name as +KurtBell, and it would get sent to him. Obviously this will only work if that person is on Google + too. This could be hit or miss.

Another feature that they have integrated is being able to control certain aspects of comments. They’re talking it up like it’s some super new feature but I don’t really see any options that weren’t there before. With that said, with comments from the old system the only option you have if you want to censor them is to delete them. Go to the far right side of the comment and you’ll see a little arrow in the top corner of that comment. Click on that and your options will drop down. The new system has “remove, report abuse, mute, and ban from channel”. Again, nothing really new from the old system so I don’t get what Google is peeing in their pants for. Anyway, the old comments will only have a “remove” option.

One other thing, people can now comment on your videos from G+, they don’t have to be on the YT page. Obviously this means you can reply from G+ if you’re there.

So far that is about all I have for you. If you have any questions feel free to drop them on me and I’ll do my best to answer them.

Guys, this is not the end of the world, it’s a minor inconvenience until we get used to the new system, and from what I’m seeing it’s not really all that bad. The one thing that *is* irking me is that we will no longer get notices in our YouTube inbox when a comment is left. From here on out you will have to have it set to either get them sent in an email message OR there is a little bell in the top right corner of your YT page that will have a number on it if there are any comments. I think that shows stuff from Google+ too so yeah, it’s going to be a bit of a pain. I’m sure they’ll eventually get something else worked up though. The cool thing though is that in the email message you get notifying of a new comment, there will be a reply button under the comment. You can click on that and it will take you where you need to go to respond. I’m really not too thrilled about getting notifications via email though. I get enough mail everyday without having to sift through comments in my inbox. I’m gonna hold judgement until I get this all figured out though and can get it to working to my liking.

Anyway, all for now!!

Posted in Things I think about | 2 Comments

Apple Sucks, Dude!!



When I stepped out into the bright sunlight from the darkness of the movie house , I had only two things on my mind: Paul Newman and a ride home……wait a second, that was the Outsiders. Sorry for the plagiarism, Miss Hinton. I meant to pipe in about the Apple vs Android war that is all the rage.

If you’ve ever used the words “Apple Sucks” as your argument, then I’ve probably just dismissed you and haven’t tried to talk to you about it. There can be tons of reasons for not liking a product, but just tossing out “because it sucks, man” isn’t one of them. All that tells me is that you probably formed your opinion after looking at the front of a Wheaties box and saw your favorite star using something other than Apple. “Shit, Bruce Jenner likes it, it’s gotta be good”.

Nah, if you want to say that Apple sucks then at least have something to back it up…..something legitimate. I also see a whole lot of horse shit out there when these arguments start. Let me shoot down some of my favorites.

1) “Apple comes out with a brand new phone every year, money hungry bastards!!” This one has got to be the one that I give the “Highest Pile Of Steaming Horse Shit” award to. Dumbest argument that I’ve ever heard. Before getting into this blog I was curious as to how often Android phones are released. I mean, I’m an Apple user and it bothers me that they upgrade so often. Anyway, Android is an OS that will be hosted by many different phone makers, whereas Apple is just one. With that said, CLICK HERE to see a history of Android between 2009 and 2011. In just two years there are more phones on that page than I care to count. I repeat that the Android OS will be hosted on various manufacturers products so you can’t count every single one into the debate, but, if you look at Motorola alone, there has to be at least 20 different Motorola phones running Android. If I’m not mistaken, Apple has 6 (3, 3GS, 4, 4S, 5, 5S/5C). I’m not trying to say that the companies using Android are bad, all I’m saying is that EVERY SINGLE MANUFACTURER comes out with a new phone in about a year. They have to. Do you actually believe that Apple is going to put out a new iPhone and the other manufacturers aren’t going to put anything out to compete with that? That’s just silly. So, that argument is now squashed and you can no longer use it in good faith, because it’s a steaming pile of poo.

2) “The new iOS, or OS for the iMac’s and MacBooks, doesn’t support the apps/software I have on my 5 year old machine.” Ummm, Windows 8 won’t run a lot of software designed for Windows Vista. Need I really say more? New operating systems aren’t designed to run your old software, no matter if you’re Apple or PC. They don’t make money by allowing you to use old software/apps. (POW) Did you hear that? That was that argument being shot down….listen for the thud.

3) “Apple is so expensive” Ok, I’ll budge a little on this one. Apple products are expensive. 2 years ago when I got my first Mac I would have said ridiculously expensive, now, I’ll just say they are costly…..but you get what you pay for. My iPhone 4S is 2 years old, doesn’t have a scratch on it, and I’ve never had any issues with it other than right now this new iOS7 is sucking the battery like it’s a lollipop. I’ll find what’s eating it up though. Which takes us to…

4) Battery life. I hear so many non-iPhone using people saying things like “My battery lasts for 3 days” etc… No it doesn’t. It might if you never run anything, but if you’re watching YouTube, playing games etc… you have to charge your phone up everyday just like the rest of us. I have a Mophie Juice Pack, it’s a case with a built in battery that will charge my phone. The 2 together get me through the day with no problems. Sometimes, with light usage, I can even get half of another day in. That argument doesn’t float either. Move on!!

Now, for a legitimate gripe, I have a friend that said…

“I hate how apple controls every aspect of what you can do with your stuff”

Ok, that’s a fair argument, but I’d like to put my point of view on it. Apple doesn’t allow just anything to be put on it’s phones or computers. Every piece of software, every app etc… has to go through an approval system with Apple. Tight ass? You betcha, I won’t even argue that, but, with that said, you almost never have to worry about viruses and all other kinds of crap infecting your machine. I’m cool with that.


Which one is better? Neither one really. The best phone out there is the one that suits your needs. I make videos for YouTube, I surf the web, I check Facebook, Twitter, etc… I don’t play games. The iPhone does exactly what I need it to do. Will that be the same for you? Who knows, but before you decide, give them both an honest chance. Just saying that Apple sucks for the sake of saying it is ignorant.

As for the users of each, well, one of the reasons that Apple sets it’s prices so high is so they can cater to a specific demographic. They don’t want the toothless hillbillies in the trailer parks, usually known as Pittsburgh Steeler fans, advertising their gear. With that said, Apple surely has a large contingent of douche bags using their gear. The guys wearing wool caps in August and hipster glasses….you guys aren’t “cool”, you look more like a target for a punch in the throat than anything else.

Anyway, again, before making a decision on a phone, check them all out and see what your options are. And if you’re going to bring an argument against Apple, make it something more than “Apple sucks, dude!!”

Y’all come back, I’ll leave the light on for ya!


Posted in Things I think about | 5 Comments