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This morning a dear old friend posted on her Facebook page the first concert she ever went to – and it was with me. KC & the Sunshine Band. I think it was 1975. And it got me to thinking about the old days. Cuz that’s what you do when you….get old-er.

And so I give you, young children, what life was like before the internet.

1. To find a restaurant, we pulled over to a phone booth, grabbed a phone book (if someone hadn’t already ripped it off) put a dime in the machine, dialed the restaurant and asked for directions. Which means we had to have a pen and paper.

2. We drove to Crystal Ship Records when the new Carole King Tapestry album came out and hoped they still had a copy. If not, we drove to Crystal Ship records again and hoped they had a copy.  Rinse and repeat, until they had a copy.

3. On our birthday our mailbox (meaning the physical one at the end of the driveway) was filled with paper birthday cards.

4. If we wanted to make split pea with ham soup we asked our mom for the recipe. She made us re-write it on our own recipe card because she wasn’t about to loan us hers – soup stained as it was.

5. We made sure we were sitting in front of the television on Saturday night at 11:30pm on NBC (one of four channels on your TV) to watch John Belushi on Saturday Night Live. If we missed it, it would be years before we could see it again.

6. We had to read books to do book reports. And the books were made of paper.

7.  We had to get up off the couch and flip the record album over.


8. We asked the librarian where the book was in the library that held the information we needed. Like what does this rash mean?

9. We played board games on a board.

10. We went for walks, and sat in restaurants and talked to each other, we didn’t post every moment in time on Facebook – we lived those moments.

And then 38 years later thankfully we could post that moment on Facebook because it brought back some really great memories.  Thanks Julie.

I have said it over and over again – if you want your credit union’s brand to stand out and mean something you need to GET RID OF the shiny happy stock art people and find something unique, fun, beautiful, telling. But have you been listening to me? No.

Google “credit union” and “your state” and click on the top five websites. Go on. I’ll wait. I’ll bet 4 out of 5 of those sites were festooned with people you don’t recognize as being part of your community. Am I right? Check out this one.


The credit union that chose this picture is located in Albuquerque, New Mexico. According to there are 555,417 residents of ABQ, and 3% are African American, 2% are Asian. I mean at least use stock art that is somewhat representative of your demographic. I HATE it when we trip over ourselves trying to be politically correct by using photos like this.

Well finally there is a real reason – a cautionary tale if you will – to stop using pictures of people you don’t know.

I give you the face of Obamacare: Adriana.


She said she was never paid for appearing on the troubled site. She’s a stock art model. She gets paid for having her picture taken and then folks like Getty Images re-sell it to marketers who are obsessed with shiny happy people. According to Fox News she has become one of the most despised women on earth and has been “bullied.” Poor Adriana!

They have removed her picture from the site. Please take down your shiny fake faces before more people get hurt.

About 1,400 years ago, long before Europeans explored North America, a group of people living in the Four Corners region chose Mesa Verde for their home. For more than 700 years they and their descendants lived and flourished here, eventually building elaborate stone communities in the sheltered alcoves of the canyon walls. Then, in the late A.D. 1200s, in the span of a generation or two, they left their homes and moved away. Mesa Verde National Park preserves a spectacular reminder of this ancient culture.

On Saturday I visited Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado. The only guided tour into the cliff dwellings still open (for the season) was Cliff Palace.  We paid our three bucks, drove the 30 miles up a windy road and met Ranger Wolf.  To get to Cliff Palace you had to navigate some pretty steep steps down, and on the way out three ten foot ladders through a tiny crevice in the rocks. I was a little unsure if I wanted to do this (truth be told my knees are still aching) but I am so glad I sucked it up and did it.  Check it out:


The lives of these Ancestral Pueblo people was focused on food, procreation, survival.  To get food and water they had to climb up the cliff, often with a jug of water balanced on their head and baby strapped to their back while doing it. Women lived to be around 24 and most died hemorrhaging in child birth. Men hung around to about 33 but often died with compressed spines and arthritis from the daily beating (literally) of making bricks and building and farming and hunting. This is  Colorado so winters are fierce. It’s not unusual for the temperature to dip below zero and stay there. This cliff dwelling kept them alive. Imagine spending six months with your relatives in a “house” the size of your living room? That’s what they did every winter. To survive.

Here’s my Tuesday:

This morning I worked out on my Octane Elliptical Trainer while watching last week-end’s episode of SNL on my Apple TV via Hulu Plus.

I got a little miffed at the speed of my internet connection – the show buffered once.

For lunch I nuked some left over spaghetti from last night.

Last night I opened a jar of spaghetti sauce, dumped it in a pan with some ground beef and boiled some noodles on my Kitchen Aid gas range. I put the dirty dishes in my Bosch whisper quiet dishwasher.

I just had to put on a sweatshirt because my radiant heat is programmed to shut off at 8:00am and my home office got a little chilly.

I’m listening to KINK FM radio (a Portland, Oregon station) on my Internet radio while I write this.

I’ll probably live to be 70.

I just noticed I could really use a manicure.

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November 2013