Books – Currently Reading

After Di’s dental appointment Thursday, we stopped off at Barnes & Noble, Bella Terra. This is always chancy owing to our tendency to buy “too many” books. Luck was with us as I found an open Handicapped Parking space so she wouldn’t have to walk too far (or drop her off at the B&N and use the parking structure).

We spent a good hour+ in the store, mostly in the science-fiction/fantasy section. We filled one basket, a bit over-filled actually. I got three books: Steadfast (Jack Campbell), Shadow of Freedom (David Weber) and The Wright Brothers (David McCullough).

I know this is a bit ridiculous as I’m already in the midst of reading three other books. But what the heck, I’ve also re-read all but one of the Liaden books–in the last ten weeks–in preparation for getting my copy of Dragon in Exile (in the next week or so, I hope). She also received a package from Amazon UK this week. This brings Di’s current backlog of unread books to about two dozen. She’s saving some of them for our vacation trip this summer.

The Wright Brothers was selling for 40% off, and we combined it with one of our two 20% off cards–a $30.00 book for only the wright brothers$12.00. I just finished Chapter #3 and am finding it to be a good read. Well written with plenty of the details we never learned in school–pitch a tent on the sand, dig your own well, heat and mosquitoes–“in the form of mighty cloud, almost darkening the sun.” (p. 58)

It is not a quick read, and I’ll probably finish one or two of the others before I finish The Wright Brothers.

I’ve got the “boob tube” on in the background with the Indy 500 and the Angel-Red Sox game. I find I really don’t care who wins the race, but, hey, it’s the Indy 500. The Angels are trailing 3 to 1 in the 6th inning–Go Angels! Mist is sleeping in my lap, and I hear the Sunday LA Times crossword puzzle calling my name.

Memorial Day

Remember the real what, who and why for this holiday weekend. To my Uncles Andy, Billy and Charlie (US Army and Air Corps), to my cousin Christian (US Navy), to my brother John (US Air Force), to my mother Gladys (US Navy Waves), to my father-in-law Ferrier (RAF) and to all of the rest of you who have served and are serving, thank you.

Be safe, drive safe.

Kohl’s Shopping Postscript

Last week I again took my wife to shop at Kohl’s. She wanted to return some items and purchase some additional items. After she returned her items and her account credited, we ventured into the store’s interior. Emerging a half hour later with her clothes we arrived at the customer service station where we entered the store.

The clerk asked my wife for her discount sticker, which she hadn’t remembered to bring. She then asked my wife if she remembered what the percentage discount was. My wife said she thought it was 20% but could have been 15%. I told my wife (and the clerk) that the discount was, of course, 30% – the maximum. How can anyone not give that answer? The clerk said: “I can do 30%.”

The clerk had made a sale.

The store made a profit.

My wife saved a few dollars.

I got to go home.

Additional Postscript:

Kids. If your teacher ever asks you what grade you think you deserve on an assignment, remember to say: “I believe I deserve an A.” And then tell your teacher why you believe you earned your A. If you tell your teacher that you deserve a B or a C or other grade and explain that you could have worked harder, done more research, started earlier, your teacher will believe you and you have no chance at that A.

Better yet, work harder, do more research, start earlier and truly earn that A.

Your teachers want reasons to give you higher grades; give them those reasons. No teacher wants to flunk a student (even you). Remember, we work hard to teach you; your failure reflects not only on you but on us. If you fail at something you really want to do well, do you feel good about it? We feel the same way about teaching; when we see you learning and and succeeding, we feel good too.


Kohl’s Shopping – a good deal?

My wife likes to shop at Kohl’s Department Store, although that seems to be changing. We have one a few blocks from our house – where it replaced a Mervyn’s a few years ago.


My impression of Kohl’s is that it is down class from Mervyn’s, not the image I believe it wishes to project. The store layout and placement of product reminds me of Kmart more than any up-scale department store. Its aisles are too narrow and crowded. The “energy-efficient” lighting is just too dark adding to the effect of being in a place where the management does not want you to look too closely at what they want you to buy.


I have in front of me the latest of their mail catalogs: Kohl’s – expect great things – save with style. Right.

There is a sticker on the front cover that says: Take an Extra 30% or 20% or 15% off everything – peel to reveal your savings. Let’s see 30%, 20% or 15%, which am I going to save by using a Kohl’s charge card? Peel the sticker. Wow!! 15%!!

Do other people get to save 20% or 30% or is this just a come on? If it is not just a come on, then why do others get to save more than I do? Isn’t my money just as good? Isn’t my charge card just as plastic and subject to the same interest rates as theirs? Why are they charging me more than others? I’ll bet Kohl’s still makes a profit on those 30% discounts – they’ll just make more profit on those of us stupid enough to happily buy with only a 15% discount. What do they think they are a used, or new, car dealership? Or, maybe, the California Lotto (which is actually just an additional tax on people who can’t do math)?

Under the peeled sticker, where it tells me I will save 15%, not 30%, it gives a promo code to use for shopping on-line. BLOOM15. If I shop on-line and type in BLOOM30, will I get 30% off? How about BLOOM100? If I go to the store manager and complain about the 15%, will he or she authorize the 30% discount? Smart shoppers want to know.


Awww, the heck with it. I’ll just go across the street to Target. The parking lot is larger and easier to get in and out of, the aisles are wide and the store is brightly lit. They actually seem to want you to be able to see where you are going and what you are buying. Oh yeah, everybody with one of their cards gets the same discount. I’d rather save 5% off a $10 item than save 30% off a like item at Kohl’s that sells for $15.