Have you ever spent 109 minutes on the line with a tech support rep? Not on hold – actually doing stuff? But it worked, so here we are, back in business.

I was going to talk a little about the decline in the market – Amazon did not climb to the sky after all, and even MSFT is off by two-thirds – but the holidays can be rough enough without my adding to it.

It all comes down to this:

Roses are red,
Violets are blue.
Gad ZOOKS we are blessed –
I hope you are too.


Marc Beulke: ‘According to the Sports Illustrated with Tiger as Sportsman of the Year, a quote-matching quiz attributes the line – ‘I can’t believe how much the world has changed. The best rapper in the world is white, and the best golfer in the world is black.’ – not to the reader you quoted, but to Charles Barkley, the former NBA player/star.’

Ed Bessman: ‘You can buy compact fluorescent lightbulbs at Ikea for about $5.00 each.’

Dickson Pratt: ‘One thing you should mention when discussing the use of compact fluorescent lights is that they are best for applications where the fixture is going to be left on for an hour or more. Cycling on and off shortens the life of fluorescents; incandescents are better for such uses (a bathroom light, for example) since they are so much cheaper to replace. The figures you gave for the life of the fluorescent bulbs is based on the light being left on for an extended period of time. Also, most fluorescents do not handle cold well (believe it or not some of us live where there are real winters) so for outdoor uses in cold climates one must choose a bulb made for cold. Finally, fluorescents lose brightness as they age so it is best to use a bulb that is brighter than the equivalent incandescent one. I have been using fluorescents since the ’80s and have lower electric bills to show for it.’

May your holiday be warm and bright. And if you still have stuff to wrap, don’t worry that you forgot to buy wrapping paper. Use newspaper! You’ll save money and save a tree. Want to show you really care? Write a really bad poem to go with it. E.g., for a bottle of jam (isn’t that what we are all hoping for?), you might write:

Grapes, they are purple,
Huckles are berry —
I hope these preserves leave you
Happy and merry!

See what you can come up with in 109 minutes? It’s a snap.


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