Bikini Babes & Glamour Models

Monday, September 26, 2011

Centralia, Pennsylvania - Ghost Town

A few weeks ago, I stumbled across a video on the internet that was talking about some of Wikipedia's most bizarre entries. I was a bit disappointed, actually, because there was nothing bizarre or weird about most the ones they highlighted in the short video. I suppose it depends on how much a person gets out or has heard of, but nonetheless, one of the topics was about a ghost town in Centralia, Pennsylvania.
Before anybody gets any off-topic ideas, I'm not talking about ghost towns dealing with the occult or some outlandish place full of ghost stories, etc. There's a time and place for everything, but that doesn't relate to the subject here. Anyway...

Wikipedia starts the entry with: "Centralia is a borough and ghost town in Columbia County, Pennsylvania, United States. Its population has dwindled from over 1,000 residents in 1981 to 12 in 2005, 9 in 2007, and 10 in 2010, as a result of a mine fire burning beneath the borough [yikes!] since 1962. Centralia is one of the least-populated municipalities [I'd say so] in Pennsylvania. Centralia is part of the Bloomsburg-Berwick micropolitan area. The borough is completely surrounded by Conyngham Township.
All properties in the borough were claimed under eminent domain [a right of a government to take private property for public use] by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1992 (and all buildings therein were condemned), and Centralia's ZIP code was revoked by the Post Office in 2002. However, a few residents continue to reside there in spite of the failure of a lawsuit to reverse the eminent domain claim." To read more, go here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centralia,_Pennsylvania

Okay, if you read about this deserted town in Pennsylvania, one can definitely say that it has encountered an unusual circumstance. It is rare, but it is not the only ghost town in the world. What makes this one a little more bizarre, is that damn ongoing underground mine fire - which is the reason it became a ghost town. That is a little more drastic than a town going to ruins due to poor economic activity, to say the least!

You know that you may be in trouble when your town has signs in the area that say things like this:

A quote from David DeKok in 1986 concerning this particular ghost town states: "This was a world where no human could live, hotter than the planet Mercury, its atmosphere as poisonous as Saturn's. At the heart of the fire, temperatures easily exceeded 1,000 degrees [Fahrenheit]. Lethal clouds of carbon monoxide and other gases swirled through the rock chambers."

Although, I wouldn't compare it to planet Mercury and Saturn, I think you get the point that he was making.

Well, this was just a short post about a particular ghost town from Centralia, Pennsylvania. Below, I'll list a couple more towns that have been abandoned and, if you're still interested in this subject, you can further your search from there via whatever search engine you enjoy using. I like Google and Yahoo!/Bing search engines, myself.

Additional Ghost Towns...
Bodie, California:
Berlin, Nevada:
Bannack, Montana:
Calico, California:
Well folks, if you're living in a non-private neighborhood that feels a little too crowded for your liking, this post should have provided you with some contrast. Ha-ha!

---End of Post "Centralia, Pennsylvania - Ghost Town"

Wild Girls & Lower Back Tattoos

At the time I'm writing this, the "Mundane Blog" is very new. It hasn't even been around for 2 months yet and, as expected, traffic is low on the beginning. However, the hits are starting to pick up and, although I've wrote several posts over various subjects, what brings in most of the traffic is 'image searches' for sexy girls.
What's funny, is that I haven't posted very many images pertaining to "wild babes with tramp stamps" or "seductive babes" or "hot tramp," and so on. For example, check out the image I used at the bottom of my post "Will the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) exist in the future?" On that particular blog post, I was talking about the future for the U.S. mail service, the price of stamps, etc. Well, I needed to find an image of a postage stamp, but when I was searching online I kept running into sexy babes with lower back tattoos (also known as "tramp stamps"), so I posted one just for the hell of it, although it didn't relate to the USPS... Ha-ha!

Anyway, speaking of wild girls and lower back tattoos: I'm seeing a lot of this, nowadays. It used to be looked at differently, as in "oh, I bet she is really wild and sexually unchaste;" but now, since everybody and their mother has one, it is just like "oh, well, that's only the 9th tramp stamp, oops, I mean lower back tattoo that I've seen today."

Personally, I don't want any of that ink on me. I don't want to be branded for life with some tattoo that I may have liked at the moment. Actually, I've never seen one that I would like to have and plainly put, I just don't want that shit on me! I must say, though, that I've seen tattoos that looked really good on people, especially those seductive lower back tattoos on hot girls and wild tramps. Ha!
At any rate, getting tattoos is a personal choice and whatever makes you happy, I say go for it. I'll just say "no thanks" to the ink for me and I'll just sport the occasional "mother nature tattoo" (scars) that I get from time to time - due to activity and accidents.

Below, I'll provide a few images of some vivacious girls with lower back (a.k.a. tramp stamps) tattoos. I selected a few popular ones from shared photo websites and forums, etc., to avoid any need for image credits - mainly because it is hard to find the original source for images anymore! Anyway, enjoy the pics......






I don't know why people post images of their selves online while being drunk, but anyway, the image below is, uh, interesting in a wild, sort of untamed kinda way:
Drunk Tattoo Girls
Now, if you're looking for a nice image gallery featuring a tattoo model, visit: "Queen Esther Hanuka - Sexy Tattoo Model"

---End of Post "Wild Girls & Lower Back Tattoos"

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Resources for the Dec. 21, 2012 Doomsday Hype

Mythical LiteratureOh dear, not again...
It's the end of the world, again?!

I thought I went over this for the last time, when I did a post over at the "Myths, Legends, & Folklore" blog about the "Grand Myth of Mayhem - Judgement Day of May 2011."
Well anyway, it gets old, to say the least.

Anyway, as it was during the year 1000 A.D., and all throughout the years - along with Y2K (year 2000 A.D.) and whatnot - the drama and hype has hit the floor running once again. Movies are made, products are sold, fear and panic is being installed into the gullible & weak, and religious figures and prophets are coming out of the woodwork to wedge in their bold claims of doom and to hopefully - and finally - get their doomsday prophesies prevailed. Ya know, the same prophesies that have been spewing outward since the day that the semi-organized Homo Erectus had their DNA altered from space monkeys to form the Homo sapiens of today. We began to play less with our genitals and began to look up at the sky a little more and wonder where we came from and, of course, when it will all end. The space monkeys may be a little disappointed with their experiments they performed on mankind, however, and have realized that their futuristic anal probing techniques were not very effective at creating a perfect species after all, but that's another story. The sad part is, if I started writing about that particular subject featuring space monkeys, flying saucers and humanoid experimentation, it may end up being more fact than fiction. Who knows? Ha-ha-ha!

Anyway, back to this Dec. 21, 2012 Doomsday Hype stuff (I'll eventually get to the resources):
I don't know about you, but always wondering when something is going to end, is not necessarily the most productive path. When I start eating a tasty meal, I don't ponder over when it will end. When I'm done or the food is gone, it is gone - but I'm not going to ruin the meal by fretting over its duration. When I'm having sex, I'm not... Hold on, I better not go there because some people that are stuck in bad marriages or relationships, probably can't wait for it to end... Ha-ha! Anyway, you should get the point. Then again, maybe that last point makes even more sense after all. Maybe some people who are stuck in bad lives or corrupt belief systems, can't wait for it to end. Hmm, that may have something to do with the doomsday hype that is not related to marketing or selling products. There really are some people on planet earth that can't wait until the "world ends."

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that some cataclysmic event can't occur during the winter solstice of 2012, but it wouldn't be the first time it has happened on this planet, either. Hell, the Dinosaurs even became extinct after a long period of time. Maybe we need to ask the rats & roaches for advice, since they seem to have made it here for quite a while. Anyway, the point is, I'm not blaming the Mayan Calendar and/or Mayan Prophesies for any doomsday hype. You know, they say that their calendar just stopped on Dec. 21, 2012 and that must mean the "end of times" or perhaps we enter a "new stage of enlightenment" or something that is somewhere along those lines of divine transgression.
Holy shit! Has anybody ever thought, that the Mayan Calendar had to end at some point. What? Did you expect them to make a calendar all the way up to the year 9999 A.D.? WTF???

I have another problem with the drama-filled doomsday fanatics, and that is: Life goes on, whether here or elsewhere. Sure, I can't prove this highly probable statement of mine, but to think that planet Earth is the only place with "intelligent" life, is a bit far-fetched for my liking. Whether it is here or there, life seems to find a way. Plus, more and more people are starting to expand in their ideas and accept the belief of multiple dimensions & parallel universes, which would really derail the ordinary, mundane beliefs that we are the only intelligent bi-peds in the entire cosmos.

Well, if I'm not careful, I'll ramble on here until this blog post becomes a bit too long. Besides, I was mainly planning on doing a "Mayan Prophesy of Doom" post with several resources and/or links to other websites that relate to this subject. Now, I think I'll just list a few and let you further your search online, if you desire. Now, as for marketing and/or making money with Dec. 21, 2012 doomsday dung: Well, everybody needs to try and make a living. I'm just mad that I haven't tried to sell any survival kits for these treacherous, unreliable times that may indefinitely await for mankind in a gloomy but vague, uncertain fashion.
Personally, I'll try to make sure I have plenty of alcohol and ammunition for my guns, in case all hell breaks loose and we enter a dark stage of Anarchy. Hmm, maybe that's the next level of enlightenment... Yikes!

Resources and/or Resource Links to further your reading over this fine, cheerful subject of prophetic doom:

http://www.december212012.com/ - Dang! Now that would have been a good domain to buy a few years ago. I heard about this Dec. 21, 2012 Mayan Calendar stuff several years ago. Of course, nowadays, nearly everybody has heard of it due to the doomsday hype. Anyway, that is the official "December 21 2012 .com" website. I bet they sell a lot of products! They also provide news and general information that is related to this subject. I wonder if very many of these websites built just for that day on 2012, will stay online during the years that follow? I suppose that it will depend if they keep making money from them or not, but we'll see...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2012_phenomenon - What would a few links to resources be without the good ol' Wikipedia link? There, you can read a detailed description of what all this 2012 talk is about. They cover subjects about this "2012 Phenomenon" such as: Mesoamerican Long Count calendar, Mayan references to b'ak'tun 13, Dates beyond b'ak'tun 13, New Age beliefs, galactic alignment, Timewave zero, doomsday theories, Planet X/Nibiru, and other concepts and tidbits related to mysticism. Fun, fun...

http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/2012.html - This is an excellent resource link to follow if you want to look at the flip side of all this doomsday hype. It is a Q & A session from NASA. I added this to the resources because I needed more fuel for the rational thinkers out there. I also liked their title: "2012: Beginning of the End or Why the World Won't End?"



And, to end this rather long post, I'll drop down a humorous, lighthearted image... In my opinion, I find the image below to be very fitting; ha-ha!

---End of Post "Resources for the Dec. 21, 2012 Doomsday Hype"

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Space Debris - Earth's Outer Space Junkyard

I got reminded about this subject the other day, when reading about another defunct satellite crashing back down to Earth. If you're interested in reading about that particular crash that spawned from our very own "outer space junkyard," follow the link below:

"A six-ton NASA science satellite crashed to Earth on Saturday, leaving a mystery about where a ton of space debris may have landed. The U.S. space agency said it believes the debris ended up in the Pacific Ocean, but the precise time of the bus-sized satellite's re-entry and the location of its debris field have not been determined." Read more, here: http://news.yahoo.com/falling-six-ton-satellite-headed-toward-earth-011725135.html [link is no longer active]

I remember several years ago, when I first heard about the massive accumulation of space debris that is orbiting our lovely blue planet. I couldn't help but think: "Damn, we have already polluted and junked up our planet enough, while neglecting to clean it up before leaving, and what have we done? We are now busy littering up outer space and turning it into a junkyard, and we haven't even been up there very much, yet!"

Many people may think it is no big deal, and perhaps it isn't the end of the world. ...But to me, it is more symbolic than anything, as it represents mankind very well. Ha-ha! Okay, yeah, a lot of that junk up there was very useful at one time, I guess? Regardless of right or wrong, neat or messy, it surely can't be a good thing to have a junkyard orbiting your planet. Having junk collide with other satellites could obviously effect communications on Earth, wouldn't ya say?

At any less-than-mundane rate, lets look below at this fine image that describes some of the space debris at hand:


For the ones who are really interested in Earth's space debris that has turned into an outer space junkyard, I have found an excellent web page that is extremely elaborate over this trashy subject. This resource link will cover topics such as: orbital objects, satellites, space junk, and high-tech solutions for space debris - along with a lot of other additional content and information. You can find this useful resource, here:
http://www.geosats.com/spacedebris.html

Look out folks! The sky ain't falling, but some space junk may be... Ha-ha! Okay, that isn't funny, especially if the crap lands in your yard or, well, on you! Please note, the odds of getting hit with space junk is extremely low. They estimated the last satellite crash to be somewhere around a 1-in-3,200 chance of hitting and/or harming human inhabitants. Ahh, now that's such a sigh of relief...

---End of Post "Space Debris - Earth's Outer Space Junkyard"

Sunday, September 18, 2011

A planet with two suns has been discovered...

Looking for a bright planet with plenty of sunlight?
Yeah, this subject isn't so mundane, but hey, I never said that ALL topics on this blogspot blog must be limited to our little Earth World, eh? Ha-ha!

Anyway, it has been a hot topic of late, as astronomers have discovered a planet with two suns. Damn, I suppose that if you were able to live there, you may be finding yourself asking this earthly question: Got sunscreen?

Below, I'll provide a couple resources that speak about this unusual, newly discovered world with two suns, that will most likely impact your mundane life about as much as whether or not the dwarf planet Pluto contains big frozen cakes that were fried in fat and/or galactic, arctic-like doughnuts for alien delight... ha!

Resource Link #1)
It's a real-life Tatooine. A spectacle made popular by the "Star Wars" saga — a planet with two suns — has now been confirmed in space for the first time, astronomers revealed. Scientists using NASA's Kepler space telescope captured details of a giant planet in orbit around the pair of binary stars that make up the Kepler-16 system, which is about 200 light-years away. Read more, here: http://news.yahoo.com/planet-star-wars-tatooine-discovered-orbiting-2-suns-181404397.html

Resource Link #2) Astronomers announced that they have discoverd a rare planet that orbits two stars, like Tatooine in the "Star Wars" films, adding to a growing inventory of alien worlds in the curiosity shop of the cosmos.
Detected by the NASA's $600 million Kepler space telescope, it is the first confirmed solar system of its kind, turning a Hollywood fantasy into an astronomical fact. Called Kepler-16b, the Saturn-size planet circles its twin stars in the constellation Cygnus about every 229 days, the researchers reported in the journal Science. Read more, here: http://nypost.com/2011/09/15/planet-with-two-suns-discovered-a-la-star-wars/
I suppose that the main lesson and/or benefit from this expensive discovery using a high-dollar telescope, is that imagination is a powerful thing, and more and more so-called "science fiction" becomes a reality, as time marches on. Hmm... Well... Hell, I already knew that! Ha!

Semi-related, not-so-mundane link: "Aliens from another world? Were the first Earthmen ancient astronauts?"

---End of Post "A planet with two suns has been discovered..."

Monday, September 12, 2011

Make money selling custom designed t-shirts & products online?

Yeah, I put the title in the form of a question, although there really is no question about it. Many folks make money online by simply selling custom designed products and t-shirts. However, unless you have a high-traffic website or a highly advertised commercial site, chances are that your commission per sales will be so low that you'll do good to be able to buy yourself a t-shirt at the end of the year, with the profit you gained from selling. Ha-ha!

Actually, the whole "selling custom made products online" is one cyber-based endeavor that I've never tried. I have sold Amazon products online, but even with decent traffic it is hard to make a consistent income; hence forth the notion that it takes a lot of traffic and/or advertising. Now, on the other hand, I've made a lot of money in the past promoting a couple different types of niches, but I won't mention them here since I no longer own those websites.
Nowadays, for the small-time blogger and website owner with low to medium traffic levels, pay-per-click adverts seems to be the best bet when trying to make money online.

Anyway, lets just forget about making money for now and lets think more about these custom designed t-shirts, sweatshirts, posters, bumper stickers, buttons, mugs, calendars, hats, and bags that you can make online.
Designing your own products is a pretty neat idea. Whether you're creating these items to try to sell online, buy for yourself or come up with a great gift idea for that special someone, it is something to consider.
...And this brings us to the real reason for this post, which is to provide resource links to a couple well established websites that are popular for custom designed, high-quality products with a reasonable price. Hey, it won't be long (at the time I'm writing this) before Christmas is here and many of you may be trying to buy stuff for those hard-to-shop-for people, and so on.
Finding websites that specialize in customized products, may be exactly what you needed for your gift-giving desires.

Now, if you want to go get some cheap web hosting and build a website and try to make money online by selling these custom designed t-shirts, coffee mugs, hats, and whatnot, that'll be up to you. Personally, unless you are really ambitious and are willing to put in all the hard work getting your online shop set up, I'd just use those custom design websites for your own gifts and purchases for yourself. Websites like that would also be great if you had a team or whatever, and you wanted to design everybody on your team a certain type of hat, shirt, etc.

Below, I'll list two of the websites that I recommend, when it comes to designing your own products or purchasing customized products that other people made:

CafePress.com - the world's largest selection of artist-designed t-shirts, clothing, accessories, housewares and gifts.

CafePress.com has a lot of unique selections to pick from. I'll drop down a couple images of some of their products (2 t-shirts and a calendar) for an example, below. Hey, nearly everybody likes political crap, right? Ha-ha!

Oh my, who could it be?

Zazzle.com - Zazzle is the world's leading platform for quality custom products. Zazzle’s proprietary technology enables individuals, professional artists, and major brands, including Disney and Hallmark, to create and offer billions of unique products for customers worldwide. Zazzle’s rapidly expanding product base covers every topic imaginable and includes t-shirts, business cards, invitations, in addition to a variety of custom gifts.

Okay, now if you're looking for a website that specializes in custom t-shirts that seem to have no limit as in what they may depict, go here: http://www.tshirthell.com/hell.shtml

Well folks, that about wraps up this "custom designed" subject. Happy shopping!

Related blog link: Buy Gag Gifts for the 'hard-to-shop-for' people!

---End of Post "Make money selling custom designed t-shirts & products online?"

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Worcestershire Sauce & Italian Dressing - My favorite marinade for steak!

When it comes to cooking steak, whether it is a T-Bone, Rib-eye (my favorite), Sirloin or whatever, there is no better marinade in my opinion than the Worcestershire sauce & Italian Dressing combo.

But before I type about how I prepare my steak using these vinegar-based marinades, lets talk a bit more about this blissful Worcestershire sauce that is truly a culinary delight and a chef's best friend.

I've been using this stuff for years, mostly the Lea & Perrins and Heinz brand, and I have found it to have many uses whether it is used in conjunction with other marinades or simply by itself.
I find it to be especially great for pork and beef. I occasionally use this particular sauce for chicken - mainly to help tenderize and keep it moist while baking, but I favor seasoned salt and hot sauce when it comes to baked chicken wings, legs, and so on. I've heard that some people use Worcestershire for certain types of vegetables, as well. I've used it in baked beans before and also while preparing brussel sprouts, but other than that, I've mainly used it for steaks, hamburgers, roasts, and boneless pork chops. Update: I've just tried this beloved Worcestershire sauce on Swai fillets (catfish from Southeast Asia) and it turned out great when they were baked and also when fried! I used it as a marinade before I battered 'em (when frying this fish), and when I tried the baked version of Swai fillets, I just cooked them in with the sauce, seasoned salt and pepper. It was an experiment, as this particular type of fish needed all the help it could get - since it was so mild tasting when I cooked it before with regular seasoning.

What's in Worcestershire sauce that makes it so good?
Well, I don't know the exact formula, but the ingredient list on the bottle states:
Distilled Vinegar, Molasses, High-Fructose Corn Syrup, Salt, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Caramel Color, Spices, Anchovies (WTF?), Citric Acid (preservative), Granulated Onion, Granulated Garlic, Natural Flavor, and Tamarind Extract.

Another thing I like about using Worcestershire sauce as a marinade, is that it isn't overly loaded with salt like a lot of other marinades are. The bottle I have right now, says it only has 60mg (3% of recommended daily intake) per teaspoon. This means that I can literally soak the meat in this stuff and not have to worry about it being too salty.
Also, this type of sauce is very affordable. I'm currently using the generic version, often called the "private name/private label brand" and it is basically the same thing as big name brands. Well anyway, I got a 10 ounce bottle of "Fred's Worcestershire Sauce" for one dollar, and I can easily use it to marinate my meats of choice for 3 individual cooking sessions.

Okay, now what about this Italian Dressing?
Actually, I usually use it like most people - in salads. However, it also makes for a great, zesty marinade - especially when dealing with lean meats such as boneless pork chops. It adds oil, vinegar, and spices to the mix - along with its ability to help tenderize meat. I use about 1 part Italian Dressing per 3 parts of Worcestershire sauce or more, when cooking steak. I use it about half & half when dealing with extra lean steaks like Sirloin and New Strip steak, as well as lean boneless pork chops.

How I prepare steak:

I take the steaks out (usually two) of the package and throw them right into a big stainless steel skillet. I wash my hands and then gather all the stuff I need.
I stab holes in both sides of the steaks with a fork, then I apply seasoned salt and pepper to one side. I then add a small amount of Italian dressing on the same side. I then flip them over and I soak them with Worcestershire sauce. After that, I flip them over again, letting the seasoning sort of mix together, and add a bit more Worcestershire sauce - if desired.
I put the stainless steel skillet containing my two mouth-watering rib-eye steaks into the refrigerator. I leave the fork propped up and halfway stuck in one of the steaks, since I'll be using the same fork while cooking and also I'll be returning a few times to flip them back over while marinating.
I'll let them set in the fridge for about an hour, then I'll take them out and flip them over and put them back in the fridge for another hour. After two hours of marinating in the refrigerator, I'll put the meat-filled skillet on the stove and let 'em sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to one hour.
I'll turn them over once more, and then start frying them over medium-high heat for about 10 to 12 minutes, turning occasionally.
I generally like my fresh-cut steaks medium-rare if they're thick cut, and medium-done if they are thin or regular cut.

That's it! There's no big special secret here; it's all in the marinade and how long you cook 'em!
Cheers!

Semi-related Blog Link: "The Health Benefits of Vinegar"

Bonus Link: "Sexy Italian Babe - Joanna Shari"

---End of Post "Worcestershire Sauce & Italian Dressing - My favorite marinade for steak!"

Monday, September 5, 2011

Parodies of the 'American Gothic' Painting

It is amazing at times, how you can be online searching for something and end up on pages that totally don't relate to what in the hell you were originally searching for. However, even if you didn't find what you were searching for, it is good when you find something amusing or useful.
Well, a few moments ago I was typing into the search bar with an SEO related query "Can you have too many blogspot blogs?" and all I know, I ended up on some blog page that provided a shitload of parodies for the famous painting "American Gothic." Why the search results page lead me to it, doesn't matter I suppose, and I thought I'd post a few of the humorous images and link to it from my own blog, instead of pondering over why search results can be so fucked-up at times; ha-ha!

First, a little info... The first paragraph from Wikipedia states:

"American Gothic is a painting by Grant Wood, in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago. It is one of the most familiar images in 20th century American art, and one of the most parodied artworks within American popular culture. Wood's inspiration came from a cottage designed in the Gothic Revival style with a distinctive upper window and a decision to paint the house along with "the kind of people I fancied should live in that house." The painting shows a farmer standing beside his spinster daughter. The figures were modeled by the artist's dentist and sister. The woman is dressed in a colonial print apron mimicking 19th century Americana and the couple are in the traditional roles of men and women, the man's pitchfork symbolizing hard labor, and the flowers over the woman's right shoulder suggesting domesticity."

If you'd like to read more about this subject, visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_gothic

A picture of the original 'American Gothic' painting:


Below, I'm about to drop down a few images that act as parodies to this famous painting. Then, I'll provide a link to another blog that has several more of these humorous images...

The Simpsons
Kermit and Miss Piggy
Freaks
Contemporary
Bill and Hillary Clinton
The Beverly Hillbillies
Beavis and Butthead
To check out more parodies of the 'American Gothic' painting, go here:
http://canthavetoomanycards.blogspot.com/2011/02/little-painting-that-launched-thousand.html

---End of Post

Common 'House Buying' Blunders...


I've recently ran across an article within the personal finance section at MSN, called "10 first-time home buyer mistakes." It got me to thinking a little bit, mainly because I've been contemplating over buying the house that I've been paying rent for. Also, I've heard of several 'house buying' blunders that people often make, and I want to be totally sure before I go to the bank and get that dreaded house loan...

Paying rent is commonly known as "throwing your money away," but I don't think it is, in all cases. For one, you can up and leave anytime you want, you're not responsible for house repairs, and so on. However, in the long run (especially if you stay in the same location or city) you can easily say that paying rent for years and years is definitely throwing your money away and it's basically an empty investment into, uh, nothing.

Plus, one way you can look at buying a house, trailer or whatever, is the "rent to own" concept. If you get a loan for 20 or 30 years, chances are that your monthly payments are going to be a lot cheaper than the inflated renting rates of today. The downside to this, is that you'll have to maintain house insurance and be liable for repairs and damages, etc., and by getting a loan for that many years, it will equal a lot more money via the lovely interest charges. Oh, one more negative is, of course, if you decide to quit paying for the house, ruin your credit and jump ship (in this case, jump house; ha!), you'll not only lose the monthly investments you made - which are no big deal, since you'd have to pay rent anyway - you'll lose that big chunk of cash you had to pay up front to get the loan, along with the closing costs that you paid initially, etc.

Anyway, back to the original subject...

I'm going to provide links to 3 sites that are talking about possible blunders / mistakes that are quite common - when it comes to buying a house.

"A house is probably the biggest purchase you'll ever make. And, if you can avoid these missteps, chances are you'll be happy with the home you choose." Read more, here: http://money.msn.com/home-loans/10-first-time-homebuyer-mistakes-investopedia.aspx?gt1=33032 [link is no longer active]

"Buying a house is the largest investment most people ever make. Yet all too often it’s a decision made in haste without adequate preparation. Use our list of common house-buying mistakes to avoid costly regrets." Read more, here: http://www.lendingtree.com/smartborrower/first-time-home-buyers/buying/top-10-house-buying-mistakes/ [link is no longer active]

"Buying a house covers a lot of ground - including legal, financial and emotional considerations. To not educate yourself and learn from the mistakes of others only sets you up to be at best disappointed and at worst finding yourself living in the wrong house. We have listed some of the most prevalent - and potentially dangerous and expensive - mistakes made by first time home buyers." Read more, here: http://www.ourfamilyplace.com/homebuyer/mistakes.html

Well, I hope those 3 resource links may at least be of some help for the home-buying newbies out there. Personally, I don't really need a top-10 list of house-buying blunders and whatnot, just a little common sense, but either way, we can all learn through mistakes - whether it is your own or other people's goofs, screw-ups, or however you want to say it.

My simple advice is:

1) Is your desire bigger than your wallet? Yeah, simple stuff like: Can I actually afford this sucker?

2) Look around, open your eyes and check out the surroundings. If it is a neighborhood, think of how it may be in a few years. Does it mainly consist of run-down rental property? Are you going to need to put up a privacy fence here? Does the land space (your yard) meet your requirements and possible future projects such as storage buildings, a garage, garden space, etc.

3) Is the roof in good shape? A house is nothing without its top. Over time, a leaking roof, even minuscule leaks, can cause a lot of damage to the ceilings inside - which will ultimately lead to other interior disasters later on.

4) Is the floor in good shape? Weak floors are common in older houses - especially in trailers. You don't want to pay a lot of money for a home that needs thousands of dollars of work done to it, as soon as you move in!

5) Is the property that you're interested in buying, located within a flood zone? This stuff happens, and often times the Bank will make you take out an additional insurance called "flood insurance" if the house is in a high-risk area. Plus, do you feel safe living in an area that could possibly flood? The weather seems to be crazier than ever nowadays, and a couple years ago I knew a few home owners who lost thousands of dollars due to a flood that was fueled by torrential downpours. Regardless, it's something to think about when buying a home...

6) This is a no-brainer: Do you like the damn house on the inside? Many people, while being desperate to buy a house with a good price, will often start thinking "I can make it work" or "this will do" or "maybe if we do this, it will be fine," along with other thoughts that relate to compromising. In simple terms, if the kitchen is too small, the bathroom sucks, and the rooms are too close together, and so on, just maybe you don't really like it. Unless you're getting one hell of a deal, I wouldn't compromise when it comes to buying a house. You may not like every aspect of the house, but when you find yourself complaining too much about the living space, the house may not be for you or your family.

7) Is there enough space for family additions? If you already have a mate and the amount of kids you want, this is not an issue. But, for the uncertain ones and/or the couples who are not sure if they would like any "family additions," they might need to go with a house that has an extra room or two that falls within a similar price range as opposed to deciding to have kids in a smaller house and end up getting cramped later on while being stuck in the house they originally bought before planning ahead.

8) If you're buying a home for you and your mate, although you can never be 100% sure about what the future holds, it may be a good idea to check and make sure he/she is somewhat stable and trustworthy at the moment (people can change over time, of course). Lets say you're about to marry some girl who seems to have a fetish for changing her mind every few months or so, always wants to replace furniture, move stuff around - along with other erratic, unstable behavior, etc. If that's the case, unless you're paying for the house in an equal split (50/50), you may want to consider a prenuptial agreement or else you may get totally fucked financially - which tops any of the common 'house buying' blunders out there, if ya know what I mean.

9) What's the potential of this house? Look at it this way: If you make monthly payments on this home for a few years and decide to sell it and move somewhere else, how hard will it be to get your money back or at least most of it back? Better yet, how hard will it be to even sell the place in a slow market? Would you be willing to "reduce for quick sale," if something happened or if you decided to move?

Well, I'm done with my list. Actually, I'm tired of talking about this "buying a house" subject, mainly because I haven't did it yet. It's not like I'm some Real Estate Guru or something, ha-ha!

---End of Post "Common 'House Buying' Blunders..."

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Video: How is toilet paper made?

Are you a bit bored today?
Well, you must be if you landed here in search for the answer to the query "how is toilet paper made?" Ha-ha!
Actually, after watching the video about the massive production of bunghole wipes, I can say that it was at least semi-interesting to see mass production in full swing. I've read somewhere that the average person uses 50lbs. of toilet tissue per year and, of course, that figure may be higher in America since overeating seems to be on the rise.

...But before I post the video, I'll drop down a humorous image for your enjoyment:

Oh, my god... I'm out of bunghole paper!It seems that this guy is out of toilet paper! Ha! I would have gave an image credit to this funny pic, but I found it on some random blogspot blog, so I don't have a link to the original source. Anyway, it seems that the moral of this toilet-based depiction, at least to me, is that lazy people never seem to replenish the roll and typically only stupid people take a dump while setting next to an empty toilet paper dispenser, etc. LOL!
Okay, now back to the point of this silly blog post...

Video located below: How is toilet paper made?




You know, a person once told me that you don't want to know what all they put in toilet paper. But after watching that video, I can only assume the "pulp" grossed him out during the early stages of production. It looks like a bunch of recycled paper that was being used, but who knows what all was mixed in with it...

I have noticed, on occasions, that cheap toilet tissue seems to have an odd smell to it. Then again, who cares because it is not like you're going to be eating it. Oops! Scratch that! I just now recall reading about a woman who has been eating toilet paper since she was in the 6th Grade... Yikes! Check out this video from Discovery Channel's "My Strange Addictions," if you want to see it for yourself: http://tlc.discovery.com/videos/my-strange-addiction-kesha-eats-toilet-paper.html [URL is no longer valid]

Related Link: "Forum Philosophy - Toilet Paper for the Weak..."

Recent Video Posts: "If 'Heaven' really exists, would it be boring?," and "How to make Beer Battered Onion Rings."

---End of Post "Video: How is toilet paper made?"

Will the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) exist in the future?

I'm sure many of you have heard about the financial problems the U.S. Postal Service has been having the last few years, but how many of you have even pondered over why and just what the future may hold for them?
Yeah, I know, many of you could care less, but this could definitely have a negative impact on the economy, right?
My question is: Will the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) exist in the future?
If I worked for them, I'd be very concerned, to say the least...

I recently ran across an article that reminded me of this subject. It had the headline "The U.S. Postal Service must make massive changes if it is going to survive," and it went on to say:

"It is hard to think of a better deal than mailing a letter. In exchange for nothing more than a first-class stamp, the U.S. Postal Service will come to your house, pick up your envelope, and deliver it anywhere in the country. It will bring it from Hawaii to Miami. It will carry it from Bangor, Maine, to Dededo, Guam, a distance of 8,000 miles. If you got the address wrong, it will bring the letter back. These services are completed with extraordinary accuracy and speed. The cost? A mere 44 cents, less if you bought your forever stamps years ago." To continue reading this 2-page article on whether or not the USPS is doomed, go here: http://www.slate.com/articles/business/moneybox/2011/08/deliverance.html?GT1=38001

To me, the future for this service looks very grim. With all of the "pay your bills online" and electronic mail options, why would anybody want to pay 44 cents to mail a bill or letter? In fact, I heard that they may raise it to 46 cents at the first of next year, but we'll just have to wait and see. I still occasionally use the U.S. Postal Service, but I was mad at myself for buying a book of stamps the other day. I don't know why I did it. I ran out of stamps and, instead of buying one or two extra like I should have, I bought an entire book of stamps (20 Forever stamps) like I always did in the past. ...I used to go through them a lot quicker, and now I find myself rarely using 'em.

Speaking of rising rates, check out this chart below, that I found online:

Wow! If you look at the stamp chart above, you can see how the rates have inclined drastically over the last several years.
One thing is for sure, using electronic mail and online billing options cuts down on paper usage and removes the delay of delivery. For example, if my credit card bill is due on the 6th of this month, and it is the 3rd, I would be late if I used the "snail mail" service, but by using my online billing option, I can pay them via electronic transaction on the 5th or 6th and still won't receive a late charge. Plus, I didn't have to buy a stamp... Sounds like a good deal to me!

Surely they can work out something, but if the U.S. Postal service can't exist in the distant future, then so be it. That's just the way things are and the world is always changing. When it is time for a business to go out, it should - without any governmental bailouts, delays, and whatnot. Personally, I'd like to see the USPS stay in business, even though I rarely use them anymore, but whatever happens, I don't think they can save their selves by simply raising the rates on stamps; more would have to be done than that. One last thing about that: Every time they raise the price on stamps, it just encourages people more and more to switch over to the electronic mail options.

---Side Note: It was funny earlier, when I was doing 'image searches' online for postage stamps; I kept finding seductive images of hot babes sporting "tramp stamps," instead. Ha-ha! If you don't know, a "tramp stamp" is basically a lower-back tattoo on women, as shown below......
Cheers!


---End of Post "Will the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) exist in the future?"