Social Media; the Good, Bad, and the Ugly

“The more social media we have, the more we think we are connecting, yet we are really disconnecting from each other.” – JR

Today as I was brush hogging pastures the topic of Social Media (SM) bounced around in my brain cells. How powerful is SM and how many people realize how powerful it is?

So many have the mentality that it must be true because I saw it on the internet. Personally I view the internet as a communication tool.

A bit in the horses mouth is a tool used by the rider to communicate to the horse. If used correctly it is a good thing but if used incorrectly it can hurt the horses mouth making it difficult to get the bit in the horses mouth the next time the rider wants to ride. This also applies to SM.

It is used to spread lies and some use it as a bullying tool. How do you stop it? That my friend is a $64 question.

I did a search on SM etiquette and at Moneycrashers.com I found an article written by Brian Martucci outlining what he thinks is proper etiquette.

1) Don’t mix business and pleasure.

2) Use caution posting and tagging photos.

3) Be self-centered in small doses.

4) Understand that your sense of humor

isn’t universal.

5) Don’t be reactive.

6) Avoid over-sharing.

7) Build a legacy for the future.

8). Don’t misrepresent yourself.

9). Don’t drink and tweet.

10). Understand each platform’s best

practices.

I was able to find some statistical data about Facebook.

1. 1.15 billion mobile daily active users.

2). 2.38 billion monthly active users.

3). 1.56 billion people log onto FB daily.

4). 1.74 billion mobile active users.

Ten million, on average, use the “Like” and share buttons.

307 million Europeans are on FB.

25 to 34 is the most common age demographic.

5 new profiles are created every second.

76% of women and 66% of males are FB users.

Highest traffic occurs midweek between 1pm to 3 pm.

83 million fake profiles.

300 million photo uploads per day.

20 minutes is the average time folks spend on FB.

Now let that all sink in.

SM brings old friends together and can destroy current friendships. Many people will say and post things that they would not have done face to face.

SM can be used for so many things and you can drive yourself crazy trying to figure out what is real news and fake news. Be careful how you use SM because it can come back and bite you in the arse. Stop, think about the consequences and use care before you hit that button.

Another Family Reunion in the Books

“The memories we make with our family is everything.” – Candace Cameron Bure

It’s official another White family reunion is under our belts. All my dad’s brothers and sisters, that are still with is we’re there. Lots of great food and trips down memory lane.

I went to the cemetery to visit the graves of family members. As I stood there I thought back to when I was a child and the Decoration Day’s of the past. Now off to visit my grandparents old farm.

As I stood there in front of my grandparents house my mind began a journey back in time. An image of the house of yesterday began emerging and the house that used to be filled with love and life was once again before me. Much different than the house that was void of both in present time.

I saw my grandpa working the truck patch with his old mule Mike. Grandma was planting marigolds in the soil he had ready for planting. She was wearing her sun bonnet and her apron was covering the dress she wore. She always said the marigolds would keep bugs out of the rest of the garden.

Then the vision of us sitting in the porch swings waiting to take our turn at cranking the handle on the ice cream maker appeared so vividly before me. It was so real I could taste it.

I revisited the Christmas celebrations that happened within the walls of the old house. I remembered sleeping in the unheated bedroom snuggled in the warmth of the featherbed with a hundred pounds of quilts covering me. I would be awakened by the aroma of fresh made coffee and the unforgettable smell of bacon frying and homemade biscuits baking. I would jump out of bed and run into the living room and stand next to the wood stove to get warm.

Life was so simple then. The only technology in the house was the rabbit ear antenna wrapped in aluminum foil to help television reception.

The old outhouse was gone. Grandma had an old tom turkey who would always lay in waiting until I made my morning visit to the outhouse and he would chase me until I reached the safety of the outhouse. As I stood there I caught myself looking over my shoulder making sure the old tom wasn’t stalking me.

The old barn is gone but my grandpa’s pond was still there overgrown with brush. All the grandkids had fished in that pond at one time or another.

The trip down memory lane was so refreshing but the real world is starting to creep back into my mind. Time to go…………..

During your celebration of Memorial Day please take the time to remember those who gave all.

All pictures are the property of Double D Acres LLC and may not be used or reproduced without permission.

Instant Gratification

Americans are obsessed with “instant , gratification”. According to ABC News credit card debt exceeded 1 trillion dollars. USA Today reported in May of 2018 that the average credit card interest rate was 16.71%.

There are very few that will wait and put money back to pay cash for something. Instead they break out the plastic and purchase what they want now, not later.

There are those financial experts that say it is good for the economy. There is no argument that it helps the bottom line of corporations, banks, retail companies etc. but what about the American consumer? They do great when the economy is running like Secretariat coming down the back stretch.

What happens when the economy starts to tank? People start losing their jobs. Interest rates start to creep up. Loan defaults make headlines. At this point a lot of folks have more money going out than coming in.

Is it worth the trade off of starting a flourishing economy with plastic? Right now the economy is doing good but what lies around the next bend? A recession? Depression? The past tells us the government will take care of the financial institutions that make bad loans but what about the American consumer?

With our elected officials so eager to pass so many useless laws or duplicating existing laws, why don’t they do something to pass a much needed law?

I believe it is time for the government to address these excessive interest rates and help protect the American consumer. Put a cap on interest rates that an institution can charge. Silly me. I forgot where they get the money for their campaigns.

Banks pay 1 to 3 percent for a regular savings account. They won’t give us a decent rate but slam us when they loan us money. So not fair to the consumer.

If you make a late payment on one card another card can raise your rates even though you weren’t late on their payment. When your debt to income ratio becomes excessive they can raise your rates. Twenty nine, thirty percent even!

It is time to take control of this excessive credit card debt and demand something be done about these atrocious interest rates. “Instant gratification” has to be put on hold and Americans need to start living within their means. We need to take control of our debt.

I am by no means a financial expert or perfect and this is merely my opinion. I am speaking from experience. If you don’t agree with it we will just have to agree to disagree. Common sense tells us if we are spending more than we make that sooner or later we are going to tank. The only way we can outspend our earnings is through the use of credit.

Spread the love and be kind to each other.

The River is Calling

I know I write a lot about the river. It is a big part of my life. I know it is hard for some to understand my passion for the river. For those that don’t have a chance to enjoy the river I hope you can get to experience it through my writing.

I love to be on the river at early dawn. Just as the fog starts to lift off the river. You can hear the fish hitting the top of the water partaking of their morning breakfast.

Songbirds fill the morning air with their beautiful music and the squawk of a Heron can be heard.

The river is my utopia and my kayak is my yacht. The world seems so perfect there. I have watched deer cross the river 10 yards in front of me. Watched beaver hard at work and have had Bald Eagles fly above me. One early morning I had an otter swim up and put his paws on the side of the kayak.

I can sit for hours and listen to the sound of the water working it’s way through the riffles. I can feel the tension start to melt as I begin to relax. There is so much that goes on at the river.

It’s a place one can go to take the time to know themselves better.

It’s a place to shed your troubles and worries.

It’s a drug you can’t overdose on.

It’s a place that can cause you to be overwhelmed with joy.

It’s a place where your soul, spirit, and mind can be healed.

In time it is a place of memories.

I am truly addicted to the peacefulness of the river. My love for the river has been around for a long time.

Thanks for reading. I appreciate it. Remember to spread the love and be kind to one another.

Growing Up!!!!

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Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill

The year was 1964. We were one out away from winning first place.  The count was 2 and 2 with a runner on third, score tied 1 to 1, and the bottom of the ninth, when “bam” the batter hits the ball over second base and our dream of winning the championship is crushed.  There were eight teams in our division and only first and second place got trophies.  Unlike today not everyone got trophies.

We failed.  We tasted failure.  Looking back on that time in my life, I remember how we all became closer and how we vowed to work harder.  We were hell bent on improving our skills and becoming champions.  In 1965 our dream came to fruition.

The greatest glory in living lies not in never failing, but rising every time we fail.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

I have spent a lot of hours through the year thinking about this and I believe in my heart that failure is the reason we became champions.  It built character and made us work harder.  It didn’t scar us for life or fill us with low self esteem.

We didn’t get participation trophies.  We earned them.  I think the big difference between now and back then is that the “family unit” was a lot stronger and more endeared.  Don’t get me wrong, we were a long way from perfect.  I remember fathers that just gave their child hell if they lost.  Losing wasn’t an option.  These are the actions that were detrimental to childhood development.  It wasn’t the losing that caused the problems, it was bad parenting.  Parents that wouldn’t take the time to teach their children that it wasn’t wrong to lose.  That it happened.  It was an integral part of life whether we wanted it or not.

At the end of the day, you are solely responsible for your success and your failure.   And the sooner you realize that, you accept that, and integrate that into your work ethic, you will start being successful.  As long as you blame others for the reason you aren’t where you want to be, you will always be a failure.” –  Erin Cummings

Maybe I am just an antiquated, set in his ways, old man but I truly believe it is time to go back to the “olden days” and teach children what failure is and how to use it in their favor.  No, everybody doesn’t get a trophy for participating, you have to earn it.

Then we need to teach them the importance of taking responsibility for their actions.  That they are in charge of writing their “Book of Life” and they decide what is going in it.  Teach them that “failure” can actually be a good thing.  We also have to teach them how to cope with failure and how to use it to their advantage.

Thank you so much for reading my blog.  I appreciate you taking the time.  I hope you enjoyed it.  Spread the love.

Responsible or Not

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“Only by taking responsibility for oneself, to the greatest extent possible, can one ever be free, and only a free person can make responsible choices – between right and wrong, saving and spending, giving or taking.” – Paul Ryan

Responsibility : According to Merriam – Webster; the quality or state of being responsible such as:  moral, legal, or mental accountability.

When I watch the news I become so disenchanted with people who simply won’t take responsibility for their actions or their children’s actions.  My favorite one is where the lady blamed the police for her son crashing a stolen car.  In her words she said the police were picking on him because that was the first car he had stole.  Oh yeah, and he was only fourteen years old.  Really?  They were picking on him?  I guess the police would have been in the right if it were the second car he stole.

Parents seem to want to blame teachers for their children’s bad grades.  They never want to take the blame for any of it.  Some even go as far as to believe they have no responsibility in the education of their children other than financial.  After all isn’t that why the teachers get paid the big bucks?

One of my biggest pet peeves is the pet owner that gets an animal and after the animal has lived with them for five or six years and it is no longer a little one any more they shirk their responsibility and take it to the local pound.  The one that really gets my Scoobies in a knot are the ones that don’t want to take care of their pet of 14 years because they don’t want to deal with it and they take it to the pound.  They don’t want the responsibility of helping it through its bad days and the vet bills or cleaning up after it.  Really?  You OWE that much to that pet!

Use to be if people saw some lady getting raped bystanders would intervene and help her out and take the attacker down.  Now days the bystanders pull out their cellphones and start recording the act.  Ever wonder why the people recording crimes don’t put the cellphone down and help them?  Ain’t their responsibility to help another human being in trouble.  No siree!  That would be the responsibility of the police don’t ya know!

I remember in Missouri food stamp recipients use to get paper food stamp money to buy their groceries with.  They finally had to go to a card system because people couldn’t be responsible enough to use the food stamps correctly.

I apologize for the rant.  I could go on all night.  Why do you suppose their are so many folks now days that just won’t recognize responsibilities?  I have a couple ideas.  You probably won’t agree with me but that’s my story and I am sticking to it.

You think the preferential treatment of athletes might have something to do with it?  One that I am familiar with is the football player Leonard Little.  Little played for the St. Louis Rams.  He got drunk on his birthday and ran a red light and plowed his Navigator into a tiny little car killing the mother inside.  He got 90 days in jail and an 8 game suspension. Then, then 6 years later he gets picked up for drunk driving again and despite failing three field sobriety tests and refusing a breathalyzer test, and killing someone six years before, he was acquitted.  ACQUITTED!  Then he goes on to retire from the Rams.  Yep, let’s teach our kids responsibility.

Last but not least then I will shut up.  Would someone tell me how our welfare system teaches responsibility?  Our own government made people slaves of government handouts without educating them on how to break free of the system.  Our welfare program doesn’t teach people how to be responsible.  Our government has severely failed these people.

Thanks for reading my blog.  I know you may not agree with me but I will still respect your opinion.Be kind to one another, don’t squat with your spurs on and share the love. God Bless you one and all.

“At the end of the day,  you are solely responsible for your success and your failure.  And the sooner you realize that, you accept that, and integrate that into your work ethic, you will start being successful.  As long as you blame others for the reason you aren’t where you want to be, you will always be a failure.” – Erin Cummings

I think this quote can also be used for life in general.