3-Cent Stamp On Demand

stamp-3-cent.pngFor this year’s Christmas card mailing, Kathy wanted me to use up some old non-denominational Lady Liberty stamps. I had to research these to find out they were worth 39 cents. When I went to the post office, they were closed, but I was able to use the Automated Postal Center (APC.) I bought several books of 42 cent stamps, thinking I would end up with the Liberty Bell forever stamps. Instead I had these four nutcracker guys show up by surprise.


I was then able to order stamps of “another value” and was able to request 3 cent stamps. I got 5 of them. Since these are print-on-demand, I could have ordered any amount on the stamp, including 1 cent.

As I applied all of the stamps, I regretted not having a pen. I kept wanting to draw an arrow pointing to the more surly nutcrackers with whatever guy’s name was on the envelope. “Bob”… “John”… “Grant”… “Jim”…. “Ted”… etc.

If any of you guys are reading this, just know that these characters remind me of you. Arrggghhhh.

Tomato Butt

This is one of the funniest editions of The News from Lake Wobegon I’ve ever heard. A younger brother annoying his older sister. It reminds me of a lot of sibling relationships in our family and can be enjoyed by any (younger or older): The return of tomato butt.

I listened to this one on my iPod while raking the yard just around Kathy’s garden. 16 minutes.

Credit Card Tune-Up

Looks like Ted (and others) may be looking for a new credit card. Clark Howard recommended the website creditcardtuneup.com where you can plug in your spending patterns, and the site will point you in the direction of the best rewards program for you. Kathy and I have always used Discover as our primary card because it pays you back in cash. But after running through the site, I found that Discover ranked far below other options. For us, the American Express Blue ranked at the top. I think this is because we spend so much on groceries and at department stores. It also pays cash back. (I’m not interested in trying to figure out how to maximize sky miles, gift cards, etc. Too complicated. Cash please.)


I signed up on the spot, and now Kathy and my primary card is American Express Blue. It has a smart chip in it, but no one makes use of that (yet.) After two decades with Discover our balances suddenly went to near zero.

Resetting Joomla Hits Statistic

Joomla counts page hits in the jos_content table in a field called hits. These counts drive the “popular” module, which I use on the SJN home page. I wanted to reset all of the counts, because over time, they have become skewed. The control panel lets you reset to 0 page by page, but with hundreds of pages, that can be time consuming.

I tried using Joomla StatsCleaner but it generated an “Internal Server Error” and the following message: “The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request.” Who knows…

So I decided to use phpMyAdmin to issue an SQL statement. This did the trick, resetting all values to 0:

UPDATE jos_content SET hits=0

Happy Birthday Ted!

While we all celebrated last Sunday ahead of the (ahem) procedure… I thought we needed a date stamp here on Mac5 to honor Uncle Ted! And to help explain why his strawberry birthday cake said “HAPPY BIRTHDAY PNUT!”, transcripts from Ted’s cell phone (Verizon rips us off at 20 cents per):

Here’s what $1.00 buys you:

8-21-08: Ayy whats up -shawty kno

10-2-08: U stil g0t time 2 send pics b4 da wedding..

10-7-08: U still comin sat?

10-14-08: U sleep pnut

10-15-08: Wheres pnut

11-03-08: Hey pnut

We won an award

My team creates a quarterly news magazine that goes out to 18,000 banks and credit unions. We won an award, so the group went outside for a photo shoot. Some of the fun people I work with…


Civic Questions


Jeb wrote:

> Got a nail in the VW, although it didn’t go flat.

> Kathy drove it to get

> patched today, so I took the Honda to work. Some

> questions…


> 1. Was there a “star” nick on driver’s side

> windshield? If so, did you fill

> it using one of those patch kits? I might do that

> unless you already did.

USAA allowed me to get that nick patched for free at a

body shop. If I wasn’t happy with that, I could pay

the deductible of $250 and get the windshield

replaced. I decided to try patching it and then

decided I could live with that. So it has already been

patched. If it’s any consolation, it looked a lot

worse before. I may have mentioned that when selling

it to you because I think I could have still gotten

the windshield replaced at that point, but then you

just bought it anyway.


> 2. Does the car leak somewhere? I recall you saying

> that. It hasn’t rained

> since I bought the car (well almost.) Wondering if I

> should buy a car cover.

It can leak, but it always smells musty. The back left

door got crunched in while parked on Rae. You can test

if the door is making a good seal by closing the door

on a dollar bill at the top. If the dollar slides too

easily you can kind of bend the top of the window back

into the car while the door is open and check again.

It could also be AC-related.


> 3. What is the tinker bell noise when the car gets

> shut off. Is that the

> removable stereo plate saying… “don’t forget me!”

> Sounds like it comes

> from the right-side of the car.

That’s the faceplate reminding you to take it. If I

was in a bad area, I would take the faceplate off and

hide it in the pocket behind the passenger seat. But

now that the car is kind of old, I don’t know that it

matters much.


> 4. The seat seems low. I have plenty of head room.

> Is there any way to make

> the seat (base) go up?


— Ted