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Ghost of Sam Post

January 2009 - Posts

  • Things in the News

    There are a couple new things in the news today that are noteworthy. First, a report on the bank bailouts. By now everyone knows that the government has sent billions of taxpayer dollars to bail out the banks that have screwed up the economy with loans given to unqualified deadbeats who don't pay their bills. Okay, this is bad enough, but the news article pointed out that banks that have received the bailout money are retaining the same officers who screwed up things in the first place. At the same time, many of the working people in these institutions have lost their jobs due to cutbacks. Wouldn't it make much more sense to fire the officers who caused the problem? One of the people at one of the banks suggested that, if they don't want to fire the troublemakers, that maybe they could be demoted to the job of janitor. It might be something that they could handle. But then, do we want these inept people walking around in the bank at night? Government wisdom, what a joke! They are not concerned with fixing a problem; they are only concerned with maintaining their bureaucratic nonsense. How do you feel about having your tax dollars given to the same idiots who have crippled the economy - so they can do it again? And you, taxpayer, have absolutely no say in the matter.

    This next article is really heartwarming. It is a report on the wonderful Arizona sheriff, Joe Arpaio. He is famous for having prisoners wear pink underwear while they live in tents. He is reelected every year because he is the only warden in the country who has the correct attitude concerning inmates. He is always hearing complaints from the prisoners because he keeps them outside in the searing Arizona heat. His reply to them is that our soldiers in Iraq have to endure the same heat but they have to do it with full battle gear and they don't commit crimes. He tells them to "shut their mouths". This man should be appointed to the presidency, not elected by ignorant bureaucrats. So says Sam Post.

    Posted Jan 27 2009, 06:52 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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  • Game Time

    After a fine meal it was time to engage in "the game". I had just finished my third donut when the owner of the establishment drove up with two large boxes in the back of her pick-up truck. Someone said that help was needed in unpacking the truck and, since there was only one other man in the place, (all the others had conveniently left for parts unknown) I volunteered to help with the task. There were about six ladies present and most of them went out to help too, but after trying to lift the first large box (it weighed 258 pounds) it was evident that a bit of thinking would be in order to avert anyone getting injured while trying to lift the load. Finally it was decided to bring the load to the floor and to slide it inside. This we did using two persons on each end.

    Once inside, the owner requested help in unpacking the game and in setting it up. It was a shuffle board game, the kind that you find in bars and other small establishments. Again I volunteered to help and we started to tear open the packaging. There were many, many parts, tools, and copious instructions. No self-respecting man would read instructions when there are thousands of parts lying around and several tools to play with. I like to see how many parts there are left over after the game is completed. You never know when you can use these extra parts on your motorcycle. So says Sam Post.

    Posted Jan 19 2009, 06:37 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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  • Wild Weekend

    Saturday was for the birds. Seven Whooping Cranes flew over the boat dock in Saint Marks at about 8:40 AM. I know that every blog in the civilized world will be posting about this event so I won't belabor the point beyond a casual mention of the phenomenon. Not only was it heartwarming to see that these magnificent birds are being saved from extinction, but also that there was such a large turnout to witness the flyover. The city of St. Marks' population was increased about seven-fold for this very cold morning view and the local eating establishments did a record business in hot coffee. It was interesting to see all the people coming out in the frosty air to wait for the birds; one would think that there would not be much interest in such an event. Bird watchers are kind of "kooky" but there were many who were not your average bird enthusiasts in attendance - like me.

    After the morning's very stimulating event, it was lunchtime. Now the family's normal, "watch Whooping Cranes fly over and then go to lunch" routine was strictly observed on this day. We went to one of our favorite eating-places to gorge ourselves on hot sandwiches and cold beer. But there was an extra surprise in store for the Ghost and his party; there were donuts left over from the morning - and coffee. Half of my sandwich was put into a to-go box and then many donuts, washed down with a very decent cup of coffee, found their way into the stomach of the Ghost. Mmmmm, so says Sam Post.

    Posted Jan 19 2009, 06:36 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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  • Fresh Starts for Old Farts

    Let us say that you are over forty years of age and that the world of employment has passed you by. It is not that you do not want to work, or that you have quit a job, it is just that with unemployment so high in this terrible economy finding work is almost impossible.

    Most employers look to save money when hiring new people. This is understandable. However, most employers make the mistake of hiring inexperienced people for jobs that require real knowledge. More times than not the young, eager person answering an ad for employment will do whatever is necessary to secure the position. Lots of them will "fudge" the resume and obfuscate the interview. And it isn't always the young who do this. The truth is, though, that the experienced worker, someone who has been doing the job for decades, is a better choice. Yes, the older, experienced worker is going to require more pay; the employer could hire two or three younger workers for the same money. Fortunately, you get what you pay for (sometimes) and the older worker will outdistance the younger worker in real production. Most companies just want their paperwork to look right. This means that balance sheets and other indicators of day-to-day business must add up to what looks good to the big boss. Business owners like to see lots of profit and as little outlay as possible.

    One of the chapters that I required of my students spoke about the hiring of people, finding work, writing resumes, and conducting interviews. The text was fairly in-depth about most of the facets of the world of work. It was, however, bereft of the most important factor in securing a job. It covered all the common things that most people know, things like dressing correctly for business (Jeans? You must be kidding!), resume writing (no one reads resumes), body language (no nose picking allowed) but there was no mention of the reason that ninety percent of people find work - who you know. At the beginning of the class when this chapter was presented, I always started by asking how many of the students were employed. Usually more than half of the students raised their hands. Then, while their hands were still in the air, I asked them individually how they got their jobs. Invariably almost all of them indicated that they knew someone in the company. Sometimes it was a relative, but more often it was a friend. Then I asked what qualifications each individual possessed that led to the hire. In a hundred percent of the cases there were no qualifications at all. Be advised that we are not just talking about hamburger flipping here; there were office workers, managers, computer operators, and health workers. Next I asked these people if they would hire themselves for this job if they were the ones doing the hiring. The majority said that they would not. When I asked why they would not hire themselves they answered that they weren't qualified for the job, but they also figured that if the interviewer liked them then that must be the criterion necessary for getting the position.

    Obviously, my students' answers indicate that the hiring process is a joke. Hiring a person because they can do the job ought to be the only factor. Maybe a better way to hire someone is to find a good interviewer (you would be surprised at how difficult this is) to do the searching for the company. This interviewer would take facts presented by the job applicant and decide how best to use this person's talents. An older worker should have the edge; you can't fake experience. While we are at it, the interviewer ought to have a few years under their belt too. There is no substitute for maturity. So says Sam Post.

    Posted Jan 13 2009, 07:54 PM by Sam Post with no comments
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  • Sometimes Life is Good

    For those folks who seek to do good for others there are rewards that seem to "pop up out of the pavement". During a family walk the other day I was fortunate to have an unexpected compliment. When it is time to walk the dogs (they never forget to remind us) we go as a family to enjoy the exercise and the fresh air. The bike path, which is near our home, is the starting place most of the time. This path leads us to the river's edge where we linger to let the dogs splash in the water and to watch the boats travel up and down the ramp. Many times, while walking down the path, people on bicycles pass us and say "hello" as they pedal to their destinations. On this particular day a bicyclist passed us, made a greeting as he sped past us, and was gone in an instant of time. He had on his bike helmet and sunglasses; I had on my wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses. He was headed in the same direction as we but I usually don't see these bicyclists after they pass us.

    When we got to the riverbank, this bicyclist was standing there looking at the water. As I passed by him he called me by name. I turned to see who was calling me and I recognized him only as the bicyclist who had passed us on the bike path. It was one of those situations where you strain your brain trying to remember the other person who has obviously remembered you. I couldn't place him and I wondered how he could have recognized me under the hat and sunglasses. I admitted that I could not recall him and he proceeded to explain that he had met me when I was doing a book signing at one of the local Books-A-Million bookstores - ten years ago! No wonder I didn't recall him; there are always crowds of people at book signings. I inquired as to how he was doing and he said that upon reading my book he was able to correct some things in his life; my book had helped someone.

    I was elated that, not only had he read my book, but also that the information contained therein had contributed to making his life better. This had happened before; people whom I had counseled have stopped me in parking lots and in malls to let me know that their lives had been enhanced by something I had done for them. They probably have no idea that their comments to me are "making my millennia". It also encourages me to try to continue to do something good for others; sometimes life is very good. So says Sam Post.

    Posted Jan 05 2009, 07:21 PM by Sam Post with 2 comment(s)
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