Friday, December 30, 2011

Initials Can And Do Confuse

It was brought to my attention tonight that while there are three organizations in Bayview that have similar names, they all share initials.  Confusion can affect fund raising, event planning and many other functions.

Here are the three:

Bayview Community Center
Bayview Chamber of Commerce
Bayview Community Council 

While all do good work there are differences in function as well as membership. Apparently, in the past I have added to that confusion by using initials only. I will strive to spell out any future group activity with the full name.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I'm The Guy, Today Is The Day, This Is The Place

These were the first words I learned when I broke into sales following my four years in the U.S. Airforce. It was the Summer of 1960 and I set out to conquer the world. Set it on fire with my determination and belief that nothing could stop me.

In the case of retail sales, I'm the guy, represents getting to know your customer on a personal basis in a very short time. Sometimes within just a few words. People do business with people they like.

Today is the day. A person seemingly browsing from store to store is waiting for a reason to stop here and buy. You must provide that reason. Perhaps "today is the last day of the sale, or there is just one left," all are reasons that sometimes work.

This is the place represents selling not just yourself but the institution you work for.

These rules never change, except they sometimes have to be modified to fit a particular market. While I only wrote for about  five years as a correspondent to the Spokesman-Review,  I was still in sales. The crime reporter that wrote a gripping story about crimes and the travails of the victims, are sales people.

That I never attended a unniversity, nor a school of journalism, I got away with much, because my readers didn't either. They just liked my style of telling a story. Armed with three years of high school journalism, I charged forth to the often times chagrin of my long suffering editor, when I didn't march to the homogenized drummer of the University of Oregon or other fine schools or journalism. But I digress.

My point is that the unshaven man that races out to the paper box in his or her night wear was looking for entertainment and knowledge of how the world works for at least that day and through the eyes of a reporter. What, then, is their motive for buying that product? See the above. All of it.

We all know that circulation in dollars doesn't support the operation of the newspaper. Advertising does the bulk of the work.  Herein lies the basic problem. Does that unshaven guy rush out to discover the newest bargains at K-Mart? Probably not many, if any. They simply want what they bought. News and entertainment. The pulse of the world and nation or all of the above.

Comes the accounting department. An institution that is tasked with the job of making ends meet.  They have and are still failing at that job.Why? Because that forgot who pays the bills. Not the advertiser, they just look at numbers and demographics. Which medium gives them the most for the least gets the ad.

So, we having established what makes the industry work, why haven't publishers figure this out themselves. The tail is wagging the dog. Accounting departments never attended any school of journalism, not any other form of creativity. They are in the vernacular, "Bean Counters."

Yet the publishers rest their investment in the hands of people that do not produce any form of news, entertainment or knowledge. Just numbers. Circulation drops off because the number crunchers, hereafter N/C find that reducing content will also reduce losses.

So the paper shrinks, reporters are laid off or offered early retirement and the consumer, the force that drives the ship gets a notice telling them that for less we are going to charge you more. My friends, that is the definition of a death spiral and since all news people are fed into the system by the same proffessors, they don't get it, because after all they weren't taught anything about what happens when the "boss,"  the subscriber gets fed up and quits. Oh, and the editor that replaced the news editor that quit in the pride of a man that wouldn't compronise his principle? A good man, An intelligent man, but the head bean counter. Where have the cojones gone?

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Kootenai County Studies A Retrogressive Sell out to voters.

For the last several years, and timed with Dan English as County Clerk. the precincts have been much more convenient. In the case of Bayview, Idaho, we had to drive nine miles to vote. Our polling place was the Athol City Hall.

It is widely known that the further you have to go to vote, the less likely Joe and Jill Six-pack are likely to participate. In some cases the Commissioners do this deliberately, since many borderline voters stay home.

This plays into the hands of wacko fringe people. Those will go where ever it takes to get their vote counted. To retrogress back to the bad old days where it is made difficult to vote would be a moral crime. You commissioners are supposed to be working for us, not a few rabid right or left wingers.

I suggest you think about this real hard, because if you do this thing most voters will oust you at the first opportunity. For those of you that have long memories, Council president Rick Currie didn't lose to his opponent, he lost due to a split vote. It might also be of value to look up the tenure of past commissioners.Single terms is more the norm that long ones. Sure money is short and the county probably has to make difficult choices, the cheapest method for representative government is out voter convenience polling places.

**Update: Dan English tells me that the Bayview Polling place is not scheduled to be eliminated, however how about the folks in other areas?

Saturday, December 17, 2011

A Christmas Parade, Bayview Style

At precisely 6:54 pm, Saturday evening, I heard the sound of horns blaring, sirens moaning and horns honking. They were heading up Lime Kiln Road, in Bayview, Idaho. This parade having started 3 or so years ago was not sponsored by any group, at least an organized one. Pioneered by Phil Stephan and friends, this noisy, cheerful salute to the Christmas holiday, I had forgotten That tonight was the annual parade.

Kind of crippled up with reoccurring back spasms, I didn't attend the party preceding the parade, nor the aftermath which probably was just as entertaining. The last few years in Bayview have been tumultuous, with factionalism rampant. It was refreshing that non-aligned neighbors just did it themselves. I was honored that for the first time since this parade was formed, they brought the parade to me, although it was doubtful it was intentional, I chose to be pleased anyway.

Unfortunately, I fumbled my camera too long, and they were out of sight. I was e-mailed before this event that there was a citizen of Bayview that calls the Sheriff department every time this or other non-permitted event took place.

For that reason, as I watched the parade speed by me, with a Timberlake Fire Truck all lit up in Christmas lights, followed by a few some decorated private vehicles, that a Sheriff car with  blue lights flashing, was bringing up the rear. Considering the nastiness thing I mentioned, I can't help but wonder if the patrol car was part of the parade, or was chasing it. Oh well, details at eleven as they say on the boob tube.

Wrapping up this story, I would like on behalf of those residents that don't have a stump to shout from as I do, thank you folks for making this another fantastic Bayview holiday.

Merry Christmas to all, whether friends or not, for this is the season for forgiveness and reconciliation. In that spirit of Christmas, I forgive all of you that have from time to time pissed me off.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

A White Christmas?

According to Accuweather on line, the week of December 18 through 25th will see snow daily except the 24th with the bulk coming December 21 through 23.

Long range forecast are iffy at best, but hey, with seven out of eight days predicted, it looks positive for this year.

Bayviews' 5th Annual Christmas Parade Saturday December 17th. It will be leaving Phil Stephan's house (corner of 3rd and Fir) around 6:30 pm. Phil will be starting the bonfire around 2 pm so come on up, decorate you vehicle and get ready for our little town parade. BYOB.

Ralph's Cafe just called to tell me that you don't need to go clear down to Higgins Point or Wolf Lodge Bay on Lake Coeur d'Alene to view eagles. There are an estimated 200 Bald Eagles present in and around Bayview, scooping up spawned out kokanee. Stop by Ralph's for maps, viewing tips and directions. The trees surrounding the navy base are decorated in white heads as the eagles roost in nearby trees.One north said resident claims his roof is white from the eagle poop.

There seems to be a heckler present in town that likes to make negative comments about others while not divulging their identity. Please be advised that I screen all comments before posting them. If you are one of those people that doesn't have a life and wants to be a pest, please understand that I will not be used in that manner. The delete button is real handy. This blog is for those that wish to stay up with activities in Bayview and the content is mine. I also sign my name to all of my posts. If you wish to slam someone you don't like, take out an ad in the paper. I will not be used for these activities. I do not attack others in this blog and will not allow anyone else to do so.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

A challenge Too Soon

A couple of years ago, Sandy McGurk was in Vancouver, BC, driving a Trailways bus for the Winter Olympics. Shuttling athletes to and from the various venues, she couldn't reach her husband, Tom. She finally called a close family friend, asking him to check on Tom, figuring his cell phone probably had quit. It hadn't. His heart did. The friend found him face down in his shop, where he tinkered by the hours with various projects.

Sandy was called and to Trailways credit, they immediately shipped her back to attend to the unthinkable. Tom and Sandy were solid citizens and respected by all. Tom drove truck for Coeur d'Alene Paving and drove steam engine Sundays at Silverwood.

Last week, Sandy experienced what she recognized as a heart attack while picking up her mail preparatory to heading for work at Trailways. She struggled down to the Bayview Mercantile, where she could take advantage of the WiFi present there. She called 911 and was transported to Kootenai Medical Center, where she received two stents. She was also informed she would have to have bypass surgery later this month. She will most likely live.

Unfortunately, working part time for Trailways doesn't include medical insurance and her husband's expired with his death. Shortly after the stent she spent $260 for necessary prescriptions, the last of her savings. She is currently bouncing around in the bureaucracy that constitutes, Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid. Broke, but with many friends, it is hoped we can help her over the hump.

Once she has had her bypass, the bus driving job will be available again. That is, after a period of recovery. We need to help her over the next 60 to 90 days, until she can again help herself.

If you can, please donate to her, Sandy McGurk c/o Herb Huseland and send it to PO Box 884, Bayview, ID. 83803. This is a person worth saving.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Are Promotional Ads Misleading?

Last September, Warren and Cynthia Beyer decided to make some changes in their communications set-up. Living out on Cape Horn, outside of Bayview, Idaho can present problems since not all options are open at affordable prices.

They heard about a promotion that Time-Warner Cable was offering. This consisted of telephone, Internet and television in a package that cost only $107.00 for all three services. Cindy called the number listed, only to be directed to an 800 number. She called and the sales person on the other end, in California, explained the package and promised to have an installer out in a few days.

The sales representative didn't seem to comprehend that the end of service was 260 feet away at the neighbors House, even though Warren stated that several times. They paid the installation fee at that time, in advance of service. A technician snowed up in a few days and switched the phone service off from Frontier, then stated a crew would have to come out to dig the trench for the connection at the neighbor's home. They were now limited to a cell phone that "sometimes" worked if they were on the deck outside and atmospherics were cooperative.

Two week went by, so they called again, asking where the installation crew was. Well, it turns out nobody turned in a work order for the project. Several days passed without results. Still no phone service, with anxious parents calling without results.

Desperately, they called Frontier asking that their previous phone number be reinstated and hooked up.They were told that they no longer owned that number and couldn't reinstate it. Eight weeks from the beginning of this travesty, Time-Warner decided to send out a crew which dug the trench. During the next call, she was told a technician would be out the following week to hook everything up.

Week nine! The installer came out, tried to install dial up for Internet, which was unacceptable. Her then stated he had no order to install a phone. At that point Warren essentially threw the guy out cancelling all of the services that were or were not about to be installed. Currently, the Beyers are shivering out on their deck whenever a phone call comes in.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Today's Tidbits

Who says there's no free lunch. There is in Bayview, Idaho. Several leading citizens have put together a free lunch for residents of Bayview and vicinity, every Wednesday at noon at the Bayview Community Center, followed by pinochle at 2:00 pm. If you plan to attend, please call 683-1680 so that enough food can be prepared. (donations accepted)

Over at the Captain's Wheel, there will Be music every Saturday, starting at 6:00 pm for your early evening enjoyment. This week-end it will be Paul Celeri doing his DJ thing. He has fantastic equipment so don't miss it. Wednesday there will be open auditions for future gigs starting around 5;30 TO 6:00 PM. A week from Saturday will be, "Radioactive Blue, same time.

Monday morning, a good friend, Sandy McGurk experienced a heart attack while at the post office. She drove to the Bayview Mercantile, where her cell phone would work and called 911. A stent was inserted in one artery, with bypass surgery scheduled for late this month. Sandy lost her husband, Tom a couple of years ago from a massive heart attack. Our thoughts and prayers go out to this feisty, brave lady. Those who wish to help financially, can drop off donations at the Bayview Mercantile.