HE SAYS:

Now that we have reached the two year mark and have posted our 200th blog, perhaps my prior attempts to describe the nature of my blog postings were too oblique or too subtle so let me get right to the point.

My postings are not about how to run a small business.  I have been self employed most of my working life; however, I am not and do not profess to be an expert on businesses, small or otherwise.   I would never presume to give anyone advice on how to run their business and it was never my intent to make my postings a tutorial on how to run a small business.  Also, of course, it would be impossible for me to tailor my postings to the specific circumstances of any particular reader or their small business so I would not even try.   However, from time to time, there has been and will continue to be postings on general issues pertaining to small businesses, particularly, legal issues since that is my background.

My postings are about my experiences as a small business owner.   I have my own unique experiences and career path that includes operating a small business with my wife and children and it is those experiences and the insights that I have gleaned from those experiences that are the subject of many of my postings.   However, if that were all I wrote about it would only reflect a part of what is important to me and I would soon lose interest.

My postings are also about my life experiences and the point of view that I have developed from those experiences.   These are the topics that give me the most opportunity to be creative and express myself and that I find to be the most interesting.    The question you may have is why would that be of interest to you?   It may be of interest to you for the same reasons you read a book, go to a movie, watch television, or have a conversation with someone you just met.   In all of those activities, you are looking in on the experiences and the point of view of other people, real or fictional.   We all enjoy and benefit from sharing the experiences and thoughts of others because it gives us insights into our own lives, it gives us a chance to explore another point of view, it gives us a frame of reference to compare our own experiences, or, in some cases, it is just interesting to see how other people deal with the intricacies of life.

So here is the rub.   If what I have to say you do not want to hear or if what you want to hear I am not saying, then something has to give.   All I can tell you is that I will keep saying what is interesting to me and I can only appeal to those who want to hear it.   With that in mind, I encourage anyone to comment on what I have said, but, there is no point in questioning my right to say it.

On Monday, Joe talks about their condo at the Jersey Shore in “Our Piece Of The Jersey Shore”.     

WHAT DO YOU SAY?

HE SAYS:

Whenever you are offering anything to the public, the most basic and effective strategy is to give your customers or audience what they want.   This is true whether you are in the world of entertainment, journalism, or business.

My blogs are both a product I create in order to entertain and inform my audience and a way to benefit our members in order to advance my business.  With that in mind, I spend some of my time looking at the efforts of other bloggers to see what works and what may be of interest to people.  As you can imagine, there are millions of sites and topics to choose from in the blogging world.  There are, of course, very serious bloggers writing about politics and business as well as those that write about more personal topics such as hunting, fishing, gardening, remodeling their homes, or the movies and books they like.

If you can name it there is someone out there blogging about it and, much to my surprise at times, everyone seems to have an audience.  I have already expressed my opinion in “The Blog Blog” about my lack of understanding over the popularity of shows or even blogs about such mundane subjects as pawn shops or repairing cars but they have large audiences so what do I know about what people want?   In fact, there are times when I am not even sure of what I want.  I watch the Food Network, for example, on a regular basis but even as I am watching I sometimes ask myself why in the world would I care to watch other people cook or eat?

One thing I have noticed is the extreme popularity of anything involving cute babies, cute kids, cute animals, or cute anything for that matter.  There are blog sites that I have found that have very large audiences even though they offer nothing more than pictures and stories about cute things.  I suppose the attraction is that these images and descriptions give us a fleeting moment of relief from our cares and worries and that alone may be all that we really want.

So, under the premise of if you can’t beat them join them, here are some cute pictures of my son’s dog Enzo at the dinner table.

Enzo made for a wonderful dinner guest at our Christmas Eve dinner even if he was a little short on conversation.

On Monday, Joe returns to a more serious topic with his opinion as to what the world might be like if we were to create too much of a good thing in “A Perfect World”.

WHAT DO YOU SAY?

HE SAYS:

I decided to take a moment to write this blog entry about my experiences and thoughts regarding the process of writing a blog.  It can be a chore to write something new each week but I take comfort in the observation that there appears to be nothing too trivial, mundane, or ridiculous that will capture the public’s attention.

I have seen online videos that have gone viral that in a saner world would not have been of interest to anyone including the person’s family and close friends. 

There are popular television shows about people losing weight; about pawn shops, and about vehicle repair facilities.  In a rational world, would anyone spend time, for recreation, at a gym to watch people get in shape, or find it enjoyable to spend a few hours at a pawn shop to marvel at the fascinating process of buying and selling used goods, or when was the last time you took a trip to your local car dealership just to watch them fix someone else’s car?    The answer is, never.   Yet, we will watch this stuff on television every week.

I don’t fully understand the endless obsession we have with reality shows as if the reality of our own lives was not interesting enough.  We will watch for hours, dysfunctional people in houses, on islands, at the shore, and in boardrooms.   Do we really care which of a group of has-beens or unknowns can dance or sing better than the others? 

There seems to be no end to what we will find interesting, including such exciting things as cleaning houses, the incessant sniping of bored housewives, and my personal favorite, watching someone eat large quantities of food.   I heard that there may be a show that will simply be about watching grass grow if they can figure out which type of grass would be the most interesting.

Anyway, when I first started writing my blogs I had some concern that I may eventually run out of interesting ideas.   Now, as I reflect on our popular culture I realize that there is nothing to worry about.

WHAT DO YOU SAY?

HE SAYS:

In life there are many things that are in doubt.   Many times we have reason to doubt the truth of what is being told to us or we may doubt the outcome of an event that is important to us.   Doubt is a part of life.

The most troublesome and destructive form of doubt is self-doubt.   Sometimes we let other people make us doubt what we believe is the right course of action.  We may even change our plans based on the seeds of doubt that are planted by others.

When I started to write these blogs about my experiences running USFSB with my wife and family I also felt it was appropriate to write about the experiences in my personal life since how and why I operate USFSB is just a part of the bigger picture of who I am and what I feel, think, and believe.

A few people have commented on the subject matter of some of the blogs and criticized the fact that I ventured into areas of my personal life rather than confine myself to topics that are directly related to USFSB or business.  At first this made me doubt the value or validity of such personal expressions.   Even though there will be many blog entries about USFSB and covering many different business related topics, I have decided not to fall victim to self-doubt.   I will continue to write about topics of importance to me even if not related to USFSB or business.

So in the immortal words of Frank Sinatra, I will do it my way.

WHAT DO YOU SAY?