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Archive for March, 2008

If You Want Lasik, Go To Texas

Monday, March 31st, 2008

Because that’s where Jack Holladay lives. What a cool name. Like a combination between Jack Slater (Professional Action Hero) and Doc Holliday (The Famous Dentist).

But it takes more than a name to justify crossing into sovereign Texas soil! If only there was some kind of list… oh, here it is:

  • Jack Holladay, MD is a surgeon. Lasik surgeon.

  • He is an engineer.
  • He is a physician.
  • He is a teacher to other surgeons.
  • He has written books on eye surgery.
  • He has been published many, many times in medical journals.
  • He was the president of various ophthalmology organizations.
  • He advises the manufacturers of certain medical devices.
  • He has won various honors and awards.
  • He is certified by USAEyes, a nonprofit Lasik patient advocacy group.
  • He was “acknowledged in 2002-2003 as one of the ‘Best Doctors in America.’”
  • Inside Houston Magazine recognized him as one of the “Top Doctors In Houston.”

In Houston, he’s in the top. In America, he’s among the best. With Lasik, he’s a pro. It’s all good! So if you want Lasik, you could go with some Dr. Nick, or you could go to Texas.

You Can Save A Lot Of Time With DVR

Monday, March 31st, 2008

You may already know this, but the average block of television programming is 1/3 commercials. One way to verify this is by watching a DVD of a series. One episode runs at about 40 minutes. But wait! Wasn't it on TV taking up a whole hour? That means that 20 of those 60 minutes were commercials!

So, if you are busy, but have some favorite shows, you could build your schedule around them. Or, you could DVR them to watch later. Take that one step further, and fast forward through the ads (like most people do). Then you'll be saving yourself and extra 1/3 of the time.

This is especially useful with movies. DVR the TBS version of "Gone With The Wind" and make it through in record time — only 47 hours!

Secret Links and Coupon Codes

Monday, March 31st, 2008

I just ran across BuyWithCoupons.com, another site specializing in coupon codes and online coupons. But on top of that it has a bunch of links to secret discount areas, too. It’s a blog with the goal of “posting the best deals on the internet daily.”

The best deals on the internet?!! Awesome! It reminds me of Mozart’s Ghost…

George Bush Shrank The Cadbury Creme Egg

Monday, March 31st, 2008

This Easter, when I finally got my hands on a box of 4 delicious Cadbury Creme Eggs, something strange happened. I opened up the box and removed the first egg, and paused. "Weren't they supposed to be bigger?" I thought. "Like the size of a normal egg? An average chicken egg?" Desperate to alleviate the doubt and get back into the swing of enjoyment, I quickly rationalized that "They must have always been this way," and "Maybe this is like when Robin Williams felt like Neverland was smaller upon returning as an adult in 'Hook.'"

So, ok, shrug it off, nothing to worry about. I did exactly what we all yell at the people in the movies not to do. You're a character in the movie, minding the Wal-Mart. Greeting the customers. "Hello, welcome to Wal-mart. Hi there, welcome to Wal-mart." Double take. Thinking, "Say, did that guy come in with a chain saw? …Nah."

Five minutes later your lifeless corpse rests on the floor, bathed in a pool of your own blood!!! All because you lived in denial of the truth! A truth that is reluctantly revealed…

Turns out a celebrity with an obsession even greater than mine for Cadbury Creme Eggs has been keeping score, and set the record straight on national television that there had indeed been a cover up, and it goes all the way to the top.



Wikipedia has another piece of the puzzle regarding the Eggs, saying that "before 2006 they are listed with a weight of 39 grams, while today they are listed at 34 grams."

Did you hear about the Wii? I read that the reason there was a shortage in the U.S. was the weakness of our dollar. It was more profitable to provide Europe with an abundance of Wiis than to correct the U.S. shortage, at least until now. Finally European demand has calmed down enough to justify increasing the U.S. supply.

So what happened? The U.S. dollar was weak. The Euro was strong. Nintendo could have jacked up the prices in the U.S., but instead they diverted their product elsewhere.

Could this be what happened with the Cadbury Creme Egg? I think so.

A lot of people have mentioned the page on the Cadbury site that told the lie of "You're just getting bigger!" Near the bottom of this page is the list of FAQs that has been referenced, which has since been corrected to cover up the overt misguidance of the masses. As of Monday, March 31, 2008, the relevant Q & A reads:

"Why has the size of the egg changed?
As the world's largest confectionery company, Cadbury Schweppes is committed to developing great-tasting products that consumers love. Since people's preferences vary from market to market, so do our products. This is reflected in the broad variety of sizes and flavors of products that we offer our consumers worldwide.

If you're eating a Cadbury Crème Egg in the UK or Canada – nothing has changed, they're the same size as ever. However, in the United States, our business partner, Hershey, elected to reduce the size of the crème egg.

Cadbury Eggs remain a consumer favorite and continue to be an excellent value. We apologize for any confusion or misleading information."

So, Cadbury Schweppes calls up its little buddy Hershey in the U.S. "Your dollar has decreased in value. We will give you two options. Your Cadbury Creme Egg can remain the same size as it's always been, but it will cost you more from now on. Or, you can continue paying the old rate, and we'll simply reduce the size of your eggs by 13%, from 39 grams to 34."

Hershey's deliberates. "Option number 2," comes their reply.

The smaller Eggs are put into production, and a few disappointed consumers send in emails requesting an explanation. Cadbury Schweppes pretends everything is right as rain. Acid rain.

They never thought someone would get wise. "Most people are too stupid to think for themselves, and will accept the first decent-sounding explanation as fact. We'll just say the perceived Egg shrinkage is really caused by them growing up! Mwa Ha ha, ha ha ha, ha ha ha ha ha!"

So, how does this country's President tie in to all of this? Let's look at the steps it took for us to get here…

  1. Bush mismanages the U.S. economy

  2. U.S. Dollar weakens
  3. Cadbury Schweppes starts losing money in the U.S.
  4. Cadbury Schweppes issues Hershey's its ultimatum
  5. Hershey's chooses to buy smaller Cadbury Creme Eggs
  6. Cadbury Schweppes deceives the American public as it pretends the Eggs have always been small
  7. B.J. Novak retrieves an old 39 gram egg and goes on national television
  8. Cadbury Schweppes changes its story after the fact and apologizes "for any confusion or misleading information."

I don't like being lied to, but here's a thought. If this lie happened, and was found out, there are probably a lot of other lies that nobody knows about. We must live in a world full of lies, and most people just don't think or worry about it. Some might even feel motivated to comment and provide their own personal justification in favor of those lies.

I don't really blame the President. I blame Hershey's and especially Cadbury Schweppes. I wish they would have just jacked up the price and kept the Egg the same size. At least then the unfortunate changes would have been out in the open from the beginning.

Let's Go On A Safari!

Monday, March 31st, 2008

You know what I’ve never done? Walked on the moon. No, I mean go on a safari! Would it be fun? I think so. Especially since Global Warming’s going to turn the world into a jungle in less than 5 years. Maybe.

Anyway, what better way to go on a safari than by doing it in South Africa? And if a safari isn’t your style, there’s plenty of other stuff to do there. Wikipedia says, “Among the main attractions are the diverse and picturesque culture, the game reserves and the highly regarded local wines. In recent years, tourism in South Africa has seen high growth with the first five months of 2007 showing the highest levels of tourism in South Africa since 1998.”

Sounds good to me! If everyone’s jumping off a bridge… they must know something I don’t! But who provides quality flights to South Africa? DialAFlight.com!

With so much to do in South Africa, I guess I better narrow it down a little. Let’s see, the ONE thing I’d do there is… work on my tan. Yes indeed.

Alternatives To The Cadbury Creme Egg

Monday, March 31st, 2008

During the past couple of weeks, I have encountered various Easter items that seem to want to be the Cadbury Creme Egg. Everybody wants to be like Mike.

A. Cadbury Carmel Egg — Totally different candy experience from the Creme Egg. The carmel inside is pure, no coloring or whatever to make it seem like a real egg filling. The carmel tastes almost smoky. I've definitely had better chocolate-covered carmels.

2. Snickers Creme Sports Eggs – Shaped like a Cadbury Egg, but sliced down the middle, producing one egg-shaped side and one flat side. Unwrap two, put them together, and you've got a whole egg. The outside is chocolate, the inside is pretty much snickers filling. Didn't taste anything like a Cadbury Egg, but it was still fantastic. Carmel, peanut-buttery flavor, and chocolate.

D. Hershey's Kisses Brand Milk Chocolates filled with Vanilla Creme – The inside reminds me of the Cadbury Creme Egg filling. It tastes a bit similar. Not quite the same, but could be a good alternative for when the store sells out of Cadbury. As an added bonus, you get a bunch of them in a single package. Once you open it, you can pop them in your mouth one after another. Since they're smaller than a typical Cadbury Egg, you might get more satisfaction by having 2 or 3.

Love Is All You Need

Sunday, March 30th, 2008

While traveling once, I came across a radio station that was playing a lot of old music. One of the songs seemed deeply timeless. It was called “Nature Boy.” The lyrics are:

There was a boy
A very strange enchanted boy
They say he wandered very far, very far
Over land and sea
A little shy and sad of eye
But very wise was he

And then one day
A magic day he passed my way
And while we spoke of many things
Fools and kings
This he said to me
"The greatest thing you'll ever learn
Is just to love and be loved in return"

That really struck me as meaningful. Most people don’t say, “I love you” enough. I’ve heard that there is less romantic behavior in most relationships than would be ideal. Sure, “we’ve got holidays for that,” but why wait? Why not surprise her, just because you love her?

I recently visited RomanceForEveryone.com, and it has a lot of tips about how to up the level of romance in your relationships and in your life. One idea that I found particularly appealing outlined how to go about writing a romantic note for a loved one. From what I’ve learned, small gestures make all the difference in a relationship. The site has a collection of brief romantic notes that really carry some emotional weight. I like the suggestion of hiding a note somewhere, so your loved one gets an even greater romantic surprise.

It’s been a long while since I’ve seen anything so sincere about the importance of romance in modern society. RomanceForEveryone.com has helped me remember some of the things we all learn as kids, about why it’s so important to love and be loved.

Political YTMNDs

Sunday, March 30th, 2008

I recently visited YTMND.com, and I wanted to share a few politically-themed creations with you. These are my favorites:

(OK) Hillary cant stop Barack – He's a Rock

(WILD) Hillary's a Maniac – A Crazy Dance

(AWESOME) Race to the White House – Obama vs. McCain

And this one I just think is nuts:

The Democratic Destruction – The Last Crusade

Did you see Obama's face at the end? That was unreal!

Let's Play Some Paintball!

Sunday, March 30th, 2008

Remember the word, “Extreme?” A few years ago, everything was Extreme. Extreme Sports, Extreme Cola, Extreme Naps! Now it’s kind of retired, I guess you might say. I’m a fan of “Ultimate.” Ultimate Frisbee, Ultimate Destiny, and Ultimate Paintball!

Ultimate Paintball is actually a company specializing in all kinds of discount paintball gear and cheap paintball guns. Let’s see how many brand names you can recognize. Draxxus! Empire! Spyder! Tippmann! Sounds like a group of mercenaries… But Ultimate Paintball carries all those brands and more, and has plenty of Smart Parts and Dye.

But what about the guns?! What’s the best? The Number #1 seller so I can have the Ultimate technology at my disposal when I declare it Judgment Day? Ultimate Paintball’s top selling guns happen to be the Smart Parts Ion (from the future?!), the Spyder Pilot ACS, the Tippmann 98 Custom, and the Tippmann A-5.

What’s so Ultimate about Ultimate Paintball? Free shipping! And of course: low, low prices. See for yourself at pntball.com.

I Just Saw The Number 23

Sunday, March 30th, 2008

Omygod, it's 9:32pm! 32 backwards is 23! Nine has a square (2) root of 3 — 23!

Oh no, now it's 9:33! Two three's in a row — 23 again!

Aw criminy! Now it's 9:34! 9×3=27, -4=…23!!

I thought it was weird how Jim Carrey's character, who seemed to be pretty smart, thought there was something to it. I'm not saying I know everything, or even that I know I'm right for sure. But I really do think that it's just pattern recognition, and selective stopping. I mean it's like driving down a road and waiting for a sign that says "Speed Limit." There are lots of signs to choose from, but every time you see a Speed Limit sign you stop your car. Then you think it's amazing how the world revolves around the Speed Limits. Likewise, if you stop your mind at 23 all the time, you can convince yourself of meaning that you yourself are creating. Why stop at 23? Why not continue?

9:41pm! 41-9=32, 23 backwards! 2×3=6, and 2+3=5, 6×5=30, it's all 30! It always was!

[SPOILER ALERT BELOW]

But I guess one could argue that the manufactured truth of the 23 enigma was used by young Jim Carrey to encode his confession, and used by old Jim Carrey to decode it. In that case, the "false meaning" was just a means to an end. So no big deal.