Brainstorming or Random Ramblings

Great Post from Shoemoney on how to pitch a joint venture.

“So what could you have written that would have gotten my attention?

Something like:”


“Why does this work?

1) You conneted with me (in this case the LOST show I love.

2) You asked me a question which will get me to respond (and lowered my defenses )

3) You asked me just to check out your site. If I like it I will promote it.

4) Its short and sweet.”

Great advice, Jeremy!


Star_scaleOne of my favorite videos is the march of stars which I posted on 10/3/2008 showing the size scale of the largest stars. It boggles the mind just how large these suns are.

For example, the largest known star, VY Canis Majoris (VY CMa), is 2,100 solar radii, or 2,100 times the size of the Sun. To take this in perspective, if VY CMa replace the Sun, its diameter would extend out to Saturn’s orbit — 890,700,000 miles (1,433,449,370 km).  It takes light 80 minutes to travel that far!

Speaking of far — the farthest know object, a  massive cluster of galaxies called Abell 2218, is 13 billion light years away. The image that we see of these galaxies are 13 billion years old! These size scales are virtually impossible to visualize!

coke_pitcher2Today, I gave up my Coke Pitcher.

Here is a little background.  I am an avid Coke drinker and have been for years. My Coke habit was so prevalent, that once, my roommates gave me cases and cases of Coke (about a month’s supply) for my birthday.  My wife also gave me this cool Coke Pitcher.

Now all that has changed since my tonsillectomy. I haven’t drank any soda for three weeks and don’t plan on starting up again.  Hey, it was a lot of pain losing 15 lbs so I’m trying to keep it off!  And since I drank 5-6 Cokes a day, that was an extra 700 – 840 extra, empty calories.

Since I mostly drank soda at work, I brought my Coke Pitcher to work so that I can fill it with water and lemons and hopefully keep myself off the soda.  Of course, a co-worker saw the pitcher right away and commented on how much she admired it.  So I offered the pitcher to her.

My rational is that I’ve been lugging this pitcher around for years and have barely used it.  This would be a good initial step in trying to de-clutter. I’m surprised at how sad I am to give it up though! Must . . . fight . . . materialism! One less item to lug around. Plus seeing how happy it made my co-worker made it worth it.

Next time though, I’ll really have to think hard before deciding to give away a unique or collectible item.  I haven’t been able to find another pitcher like it on Coke’s website. Then again, this was a good first blow towards de-cluttering. I will have to do considerably more if I ever hope to join David Bruno’s 100 Thing Challenge!

Besides, my wife’s strategy towards de-clutter is to take a picture of things that you would normally collect.  You train yourself to collect pictures, instead of physical items.  Let’s see if this works!

A week down.  I’ve lost 10 pounds.  Weighed in on the scale at 175 this morning. This tonsillectomy recovery has been really bizarre. Part of the difficulty during the recovery process, is that it is not a linear path. The first couple of days after surgery are actually not quite bad.  The pain seems on par to a bad case of tonsillitis and your throat just feels inflamed and bruised.  Then the scabs start coming off and you are coughing up bloody mucous. It doesn’t really hurt, at this time, but you are constantly coughing up these never ending gobs of blood, wondering how you are ever going to be able to get to sleep at night.

Finally, the bleeding subsides, but the razor blade cutting pains come back. A week after the surgery and I am having trouble waiting for my next medicine dose.

Also, during the bleeding, I was playing head games with myself trying to deal with the bloody scabs. At first, the scabs were large and bloody, becoming less so as they healed. So in the beginning, I was coughing them up frequently–less and less often as they healed up and dried up.  Then, I would dislodge another scab and the whole process would begin again. Well, near the end of the healing, I would find myself coughing uncontrollably, as if my body was attempting to dislodge something. I lot of times, this was done fruitlessly, as I didn’t feel any obstructions in my throat.  I would have to sit down and will my body not to cough any more so that I could keep breathing. It became a contest of mind over matter–no, you don’t need to cough, breathe normally.

Fortunately, vigorous coughing doesn’t seem to irrate any part of my throat or cause any pain. The cough appears to hit the back of the throat, whereas the recovering areas are more forward?

Entering the second stage of recovery, where the tonsils start scabbing up and the scab comes loose. The site was right on the money describing how the scabs are these incredibly thick, bloody mucous plugs. I wasn’t sure what to do. At first, I tried not to cough them up too often, so that the scabs could set and I wouldn’t bleed so much, but they were so mucousy and large, that I felt I was gaggin on them.

So then I tried spitting them up in the sink and rinsing my mouth with water, but there was no end to them. Then, finally, I started feeling light headed and nauseous. I guess that I was swallowing so much blood that it was making me sick.  I couldn’t stand upright anymore, so I sat in front of the toilet instead, spitting up the bloody scabs.  Then, the next thing I know, I curled up on the floor, lying in a pool of blood. There was blood all over the front of my shirt and a pool of it around me. I was like, “whoa! Who did I kill and eat while I was unconsious!”

I was still too weak to move, so I must have layed there for another half hour, gathering up my strength. Then, I cleaned up the area as best as I could so that my wife wouldn’t go into shock seeing the bloody bathroom.  Then, I took a shower — sitting down. I tried to evaluate how badly off I was. This was a little like when I had my ulcer and lost a pint of blood.  It wasn’t nearly as bad, though.  Still, I couldn’t really function without feeling nauseous, so I decided to call 911 and head back to the hospital, where they can bring my blood pressure back up.

Over at the ER, they gave me an IV, ran a bunch of tests, and gave me a clean bill of health.  Apparently, all the blood on the floor, just came from my tonsils — there was no other source of bleeding.

tonsils1I just had a tonsillectomy on Thursday.  I called up a co-worker who had his removed last year to get the low down. He assured me that it would be a miserable two weeks of recovery. One of his major difficulties is that he’s very thin.  He didn’t have a lot of extra fat reserve to tide him over, so that he was starving after three or four days.   For me, dealing with hunger is much easier.  Four days after my procedure, I’ve already lost five pounds, but I haven’t really been hungry.  Except for the one time I made the mistake of watching Top Chef on TV.

A really helpful site is, with numerous posts from other people who had the procedure, their experience dealing with the pain. My favorite post so far is by Wubbie:

“7. I do not want to hear from you if you had your tonsils out when you were a kid and don’t remember it being “that bad”. Once you’re past 25 or so, it’s a whole different ball game. If you have your tonsils removed when you’re 8 years old, it’s true, it’s not that bad—your body is still developing, the top of your skull is still hardening, your teeth are just coming in, your legs are still wobbly. But when you’re in your 30s, your body has grown accustomed to having an inside to its mouth, so removing it really puts the rest of your body in a foul mood as it tries to figure out what the hell just happened.”

I can whole-heartedly agree that right after the surgery, swallowing feels like swallowing a bunch of razor blades. The inside of my throat is all lacerated and burning. I also experienced the distended tongue and swollen uvula which makes it feel like I have something stuck in my throat.  Here is an excerpt from   Adipocere’s description.

“SURPRISE PAIN VECTOR: Your tongue. Your tongue will be swollen because they put a device called a “tongue blade” on you that pushes the annoying thing against the bottom of your jaw so it doesn’t flop around during surgery. This made mine swell up and was probably the most painful part.”

Over all, my recovery has been going pretty smoothly.

A side note: had a server crash on Friday. Although it is back on line, the link in this post used to have 20+ pages.  Now, it is only displaying one page.

I came across a Keyword Strategy article at  Josh has written up a clear, easy to understand guide on how to determine and select your keywords.

I’m following along to see if I can update my keywords. One key element that Josh highlights is using Google’s tools to identify a keyword that’s not too broad and with less competition.  In other words, identify a niche.

  1. Goto
  2. Type in 6 – 8 search words that you think people will use to try to find your site
  3. Make sure that use synonyms is checked. Generate key words.
  4. Review the results. Check for words with:
    1. Less than half advertisers
    2. Under 10K/month
    3. Example 1 – free stuff keywords

i. Totally free samples, half, 3600

ii. Samples and Freebies, 55%, 1,300

iii. cosmetic free samples, < half, 6600

iv. free sample products, half, 8100

v. get free samples, 60%, 8100

vi. totally free baby stuff, half, 2600

vii. free stuff mail, <half, 6600

    1. Example 2 – low volume (competition) search. Start off with these?

i. free stuff giveaways, < half, 260

ii. free stuff offer, <half, 320

iii. free trial samples, 15%, 720

iv. free samples for babies, 20%, 480

    1. Example 3 – website content

i. Deals infinity, 15%, 1600

ii. Clearance deals, 20%, 2400

iii. Red hot deals, 50%, 1600

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