August 10, 2001

Are you disturbed by the recent Fruit of the Loom advertisements with the kids grooming in front of the mirror in just their underwear? As a parent of a 7-year old, this commercial disturbs me on several fronts. Before I tell you why I'm upset, let me share with you what you can/should do about it if you feel like I do. You can Contact Them with this feedback form and tell them you won't buy their product specifically because of the advertisement.

The first reason I hate the commercial - Kids in their underwear is a taboo subject. Other people should not be allowed to view my child in his skivvies. No ifs, ands or butts about it. With that said, I do understand it is an underwear commercial...and for some reason, I don't have the same problem with diaper commercials...

The kids are posing in front of mirrors, getting ready for picture day. Pre-pubescent children should not be concerned with their looks. It only sets them up for dissapointment later in life. The extreme of this is the little kids they put on display like that Benet girl. Little children should not be posing at their age...and certainly not in anything close to a 'suggestive' manner.

The commercial forces the viewer into a situation where they are 'clandestinely' watching children pose in their underwear. The viewer is not a part of the action, and the camera angles are such to suggest a voyeuristic angle..lest the children be shy about their posing in front of mirrors, I suppose. This comes WAY to close to pedophilia for me. It's just touching the line....voyeuristically watching children in their underwear! I'll bet I get tons of search engine hits JUST for this paragraph alone...

Pull the commercial, Fruit of the Loom, pull it now, as fast as Calvin Klein pulled down their billboards. And while you're at it, fire your ad executives..

August 07, 2001

You know what's odd? I get lots of hits from web search engines. People looking for different things that I may discuss from time to time will hit on my web site up there in the search engine results. I don't use any tricks or anything special, either, like META tags or listing keywords over and over. One example, I got hits from people looking for info about the Magellan GPS mapping system. I talked about that device after we used one on vacation. I just find it really curious that search engines like aol, altavista and hotbot all score me so high on such searches even though my content may only make one or two mentions of the keywords. I'm glad to see the visitors, of course..but I still find it odd.

August 06, 2001

Now, here's a bold site for you! Don't click the link yet. Let's put this in perspective first. I caught a bug in my house. Looks like a wasp, but the 'stinger' has a large bubble [maybe an abdomen?!?] on it. I wanted to identify it. So I typed to see what I got. Imagine being greeted with this Welcome to Terminix! [Go ahead, click it now]. WAY BOLD! I don't think the majority of people who hit this site either on purpose or by mistake will ever get past that page. Click it, see what I mean? Talk about an ASSAULT!?! It's like walking into a hardware store and having the clerk stand in the doorframe and demand your address before letting you enter the store. Sorry buddy, wrong store...I meant to go to Home Depot next door. Whew!
Right next to POTOMAC MILLS Mall in Woodbridge, VA is a huge empty building. Back in 1996, Tandy Corp. shut down its Incredible Universe division. This huge empty building was, at the time, about 6 months old. It held a HUGE Incredible Universe store. Right across the street is a Best Buy, still standing. On the other side of the road, Walmart. Surrounding the building is a huge gaggle of consumerism. It is the perfect location for any store looking for a constant influx of new customers, as thousands of people a week take buses to come to the huge outlet mall right behind it.

Yet, the store has been empty since Jan of 1997. 18,000 square feet of wonderful retail space just off of I-95. Large docking bays for truck deliveries, a beautiful internal layout....there are several shops I would love to see in here. It would be great for Virginia to get a Dave and Busters [D&B]. Or a Fry's Electronics. How about a huge nightclub? This building should be big enough to compete with eCiti Cafe & Bar in McLean. So, I continue to wonder...why no one takes advantage of it. Commercial Real Estate is a constant mystery to me.

August 04, 2001

As if defying Robert Heinlein and TANSTAAFL, I have found a new webcounter for my website at Stats4You.Com It offers FREE web site statistics, quick stats and visitor tracking. One thing it does even NICER than the previous counter I used is that it allows you to have one account with multiple web sites to allow you to combine and put all your stats together. It also uses less code on the page itself, which is nice considering how much junk I already have on this page.

August 03, 2001

Flash animation may be tacky to some, but it is a really simple way to do animation on your web site. Of course, not everyone with a web site can afford the $399 and up you'd pay for Flash. Well, some time ago, I mentioned a program called SWiSH. Version 2.0 has just come out a few days ago, and the 'new price' is $49.95 (14.95 for upgrades from version 1.5, which I gladly shelled out!). It has HUNDREDS of new features, and it has been totally reworked to allow amateur animators and Flash developers like myself play in the game without diving into the deep end with Flash itself. If you have a website and want to kick it up a bit, I HIGHLY recommend this software! There's a 15-day trial period, after which your registration fee allows you to register the s/w on both your home PC and your work PC.