R u m i n a t i o n

Friday, April 11, 1997

i felt like I'd just been run over by a school bus. When I got back to the Main Retail Complex from six on-site, landscape evaluation meetings, I slumped down into my big leather chair at the desk. Wheeew! After a relatively mild Winter, I would have to get used to this all over again. The first day of our Spring-Summer-Fall Hours was Thursday not actually coinciding with Spring's advertised arrival and a 12-hour day was a stretch after the Winter's somewhat shortened hours. Soon, I'll be doing 18-20 hour days, seven days a week, as the season progresses. Plus, the conversion to Daylight Savings Time was looming just two short days away. The loss of an hour wouldn't be felt until a week or two later, but eventually everyone would notice it.

There were many people in on both Thursday and Friday seemingly all 245 requiring help in deciding upon plant material plus the incessant phone calls, stacks of messages for calls needing to be returned, calendars of appointments and piles of estimates to be finished. The staff was stressed out when it was all over. I was glad to see 8:30pm arrive. Although I was still loading customers' cars and vans in the dark with a flashlight, I was ready to leave. Or maybe work for a few more hours in peace and quiet as I was used to doing? I opted for leaving and sleep. Aspirin took care of the aches and pains. Sleep is good.

The ensuing weekend was extremely busy. It was simply a minor tune-up for The Season Opener next weekend. Just over 810 people were through. On a busy Spring weekend, more than 2,500 will visit; over 1,500 will make purchases, arrange for installations, deliveries and landscape jobs. It's a busy place. We'll have more retail sales help on board for The Open House, Saturday, April 12th, from 11am-3pm. That's tomorrow.

New Material
Despite having a crew of 8 in all week to help ready the 20 acre Nursery and Garden Center for next week's Open House, there was too much to get done in 5 short days. Five tractor trailers and various other trucks arrived and had to be unloaded, inventoried, material tagged and put into the Nursery Display Areas. Still more projects were incomplete: irrigation, bagged goods, The Collector's Nursery Area, well, just about everything since almost two dozen trucks are still due in.

Wednesday morning, three trucks rolled in that had been stuck in the Great Plains and Midwest Blizzards since last week. Signs of their struggle in snow and ice were evident on the outside of the truck body. There were three nurseries' loads from Oregon on-board one of the trucks: the very finest large nursery stock specimens I've seen yet from our vendors. Wow! What a beautiful assortment I'd ordered. I was most impressed and delighted. The only drawback: a mild case of frostbite on both hands I'd gotten from operating the John Deere 675B Skid loader in almost zero degree weather. Hey, this is April! In fact, we had some flurries, but the wind and the cold was penetrating. Even with gloves, my hands froze first and it was very painful to thaw them out. After getting through the pain and warming-up, I went back out to help unload more trucks.

More tractor trailers will arrive over the next four weeks, providing us with even more opportunities for messing up my Landscape Projects Schedule. When the routine is regularly disrupted, everything must be regularly reorganized. Constant interruption of timing and schedule is very frustrating, but accepted as de rigeur. Being a weather-driven industry, there's no choice. Life sucks sometimes.

Our Tax Dollars At Work
The Internal Revenue Service really put both feet into it this past week. Seems they lost 64 tapes of millions of taxpayer records. Misplaced them was the official phrase.

Also, the Internal Revenue Service fired 23 employees, disciplined 349 and counseled 472 other workers after agency audits found that government computers were still being used to browse through the tax records of friends, relatives and celebrities, an IRS document released yesterday showed.

Mr. Astronaut, US (Ohio) Senator John Glenn is looking into it all. This, and many more yet-to-be revealed IRS fiascoes will make for illegal alieny reading this summer when the shit hits the fan.

Good PR Move, Steve
It's in the paper everyday: "AOL Screws More People." And yet people continue to take the abuse. The 8 million subscribers are now down to 7+ million and dropping.

I just read the CyberTimes story of how AOL has duped millions of people again by providing a phony 800 number that they can call up to use for online service, that's not an 800 number at all. Many subscribers are getting $500+ phone bills for last month's "service". They're getting "service" all right: screwed six ways to Sunday, and many still don't know it. It's been a joke for years amongst the digerati of the online community, that anyone with an AOL account is a cretin, making an moron like Steve Case richer by the day. A few are, but most just don't know that there are much better ISPs out there.

Angry Donors
From all documents subpoenaed so far, it is very clear that the Democratic National Committee heavily targeted Asian Americans just as it did with Jews, Indians, Italians, Africans and every conceiveable ethnic and religious group in America in a morally-corrupt and criminal fund raising effort. The New York Times headline said it all. Now the DNC says they didn't do such a thing; that it was just a "coincidence" that everyone who raised the tainted money from the Asian community for Clinton's reelection was of Asian descent and is now being subpoenaed to testify in the ongoing investigations.

Hasn't the DNC ever heard of a paper shredder for filing sensitive documents? It sounds as though they're as stupid as Nixon was during Watergate by allowing his Oval Office taping system to be made available to the prosecutors. The DNC idiots delineated their entire racial and religious strategy on paper for the world to marvel at: get all the dough we can from these stupid groups. What a bunch of sorry scum reside in The White House.

And now, the Asian Americans are pissed off, and rightly so. It'll be interesting to see just how many testify against the liberal Clinton filth for what's happened. There's no one I know more deserving of having the truth told about him than Slick Willie & Co.

And speaking of truth a foreign concept to the liars at The White House the noose is tightening around the Hubbell buffoon buddy of Clinton's. Read about the hush money paid to him by Clinton's criminal friends after he was convicted and served time in federal prison for only a few of his crimes. He'll soon be hung out to dry by Ken Starr and left twisting in the wind by Clinton. Way to go, Web.

Here's where the lying DNC lowlifes hang out. Drop by and leave them a note to start telling the truth. I did.

This Journal
This past week, of the several hundred readers, I received 12 emails from people upset at reading my Journal's political viewpoints about liberals, the DNC and rampant political corruption in America. They were particularly upset at my "mixing business with politics and will never do business with me because of it."

So I want to set a few things straight here.

John's Journal is a personal opinion vehicle that just happens to reside on this Website. This is my forum my personal forum for whatever I don't feel should be displayed within my corporate site. There's plenty of business-related points that I make over there, which are out-of-place here. But in no sense of the matter do I ever carry material from here into the business side of my site.

If anyone has a problem with what I say here, please send me some mail and express your displeasure, agreement or whatever. I enjoy hearing from people, both pro and con. I don't take a lot of shit for my views; most people agree that politics is a terribly corrupt institution and the majority of politicians should be jailed for their complicity in crime. Free, open and considered discussion is the best way to handle it, since mass executions of politicians would raise some eyebrows.

It's too bad that some people "won't do business with me" because of what's said here; that's their loss. They can't get the earthy rarities that I have here, anywhere else. Letting petty, political viewpoints stand in the way of doing business for gardening pleasure is their misfortune in mixing business and politics. 'Nuff said.

'Taters
I used to make a meal of them in college: ten large McDonald's fries, dumped into a paper bag and shaken with lots of salt. Ummmm, a heart attack on a plate. It's not the potato itself, it's what you do to it when you cook and eat it. Which way is your favorite? Here's a site to visit. Watch the animated Mr. Potato on the opening screen.