Today I was shocked to see how many closed stores and businesses  no longer exist because of COVID. I went to two phone stores today and both were closed stores.  The best part is that the GPS on my phone didn’t tell me they were no longer open.  Wednesday I went to a phone store only to find it was a pizza place and the company had moved about five miles away.  It’s really shocking when you pass malls and particularly strip malls to see the number of closed stores.  Businesses are dying because of COVID.  It is not the best situation.  I did read that the flu is almost non existent for this past season.  I suspect it is due to people wearing masks and not crowding each other.  I also saw, as long as we are discussing statistics, that nine hundred forty-nine women have died from the vaccination.  I do not know if that is an accurate number. For example, near me in the states right now, the once huge Sears that was a department store and had an auto service center is now a bowling alley in part and the balance is empty.  Last month I walked into a mall with my son that he said a year ago was always busy.  The number of closed stores was shocking.  Not to mention that their signs were removed and they were never returning. This crisis has truly affected the economy in a terrible way.  In the Good Gus series, there were no closed stores.  As the series progressed, new businesses were moving to Pecos.  The series is online at Kindle with a few books on Nook and Waterstones.  “Misplaced Trust” can easily be found online at these fine websites: 24 Symbols, Apple, Nook, Kindle, Kobo, Page Foundry, Scribd, Playster and Tolino.

 If the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the words bad cycles, if you are thinking it’s about bicycles you would be incorrect.  We all hit them in our lives even the rich and famous.  Sometimes its only a few days, but often it lasts much longer.  Look at the economy.  It has bad cycles frequently.  Changes occur and then it rallies.  The Wall Street predictors generally have an idea of when and how the economy will turn around.  However, they are not always 100% accurate.  Even in our personal lives, we have bad cycles that no matter what we do we can’t find a decent job, our cash flow is poor or we just can’t keep up with inflation.  We try everything to escape from the negativity and unfortunately, there are periods that it almost seems hopeless.  There are individuals who believe that the moon gives us good and bad cycles.  It certainly regulates the tides.  Others believe they have done something wrong or made a grave mistake and they are being punished.  In any event, the best approach is to figure out why everything is falling apart and then take the necessary steps to correct it.  If you are out of work, you can’t sit at home wishing a job would come to you. You need to actively pursue all avenues of opportunity.  Someone in a company will see your CV/resume and recognize your talents and then your bad cycles will become positive.  In the Good Gus series, available on Kindle, there were bad cycles of weather.  However, the stories always had an interesting twist.  The importance of the events for the young reader is that everyone banded together and lent a hand wherever it was needed.  “Misplaced Trust is full of bad cycles for many of the characters.  It is available on 24 Symbols, Apple, Nook, Kindle, Kobo, Page Foundry, Playster,  Scribd and Tolino.

 Why is it that in today’s society many people feel entitled? When there were huge booms in the economy particularly in the U.S., it was shocking the way many individuals felt that they deserved everything and more.  People believed they were entitled to own second homes when they could barely afford the one they were living in.  Anyone who had a job, because credit was so easy at that time, bought luxury cars because they felt they were entitled so they rushed out and made extravagant purchases.  When their properties and autos were repossessed, they were upset and angry.  Once the companies began closing and people were in the unemployment line, they felt they were entitled to receive their full pay even though they weren’t working.  It’s true.  My cousin worked in an unemployment office and she was amazed at their attitudes.  Has anyone figured out why people feel they are more entitled than another person?  All countries, regardless of location, were built on hard work, ingenuity and the desire to succeed.  Many of the millenniums feel that   they are entitled to their parents money so they can enjoy themselves.  What happened to the fact that the parents worked their entire lives just have retirement savings and do all the things they didn’t have time for?  We are entitled to be happy and live in peace.  However, the basic premise that everyone is entitled to everything is wrong.  Many individuals work hard their entire lives and barely scrape by.  Does the other person who works hard and becomes rich any less entitled? In the Good Gus series everyone did their best and entitlement was never an issue.  Available on Kindle, it is great summer reading for the days when your young readers are bored.  In “Misplaced Trust” there are characters who really feel entitled and when they don’t receive what they expect, what happens is interesting.  It is available on 24 Symbols, Apple, Nook, Kindle, Kobo, Page Foundry, Scribd, Playster and Tolino.

We all have unlimited potential, it just depends upon how we utilize it. There are individuals who have lost out because of recessions who were qualified for careers that disappeared.  Often individuals attend college, earn a degree, then cannot locate a suitable position.  Sometimes it takes a great deal of effort.  Occasionally, they decide it is hopeless and work at mundane jobs and are miserable their entire lives.  In the 1980’s, there were countless people with degrees who worked on assembly lines simply because the economy required specific products and the pay was significantly higher.  Some of those former assemblers went back to school and studied for new careers.  A few of the people willing to learn computer aided design moved on as the technology was booming.  Others moved into software engineering and many decided working for the government was a safer bet and became certified as teachers.  They all knew they had potential.  It just took a little time to figure it out.  Many parents send their children to the vocational schools or community colleges in hopes that they will figure out what they want to do in life.  Not everyone knows by the time they are teenagers which path to take.  How often have you heard this sentence.  “You have so much potential if only you would apply yourself.”  As young adults we heard it frequently.  Sometimes you have to try a few things to figure out what you want.  My late girlfriend had no idea what she wanted to do when we graduated high school.  She worked as a waitress and then decided she might try working in a hospital to see if she liked it.  Once she realized it was her ideal career, she went to school and became a licensed practical nurse.  As she progressed, she began to understand that she wanted to be in the operating room or the emergency room which required additional training.  Once again, she went back to school for her bachelors degree.  She was very happy until she was diagnosed with cancer.  So parents, if you children keep trying new things, let them.  They are just trying to find their way in life rather than be stuck in a boring job.  They do have the potential, they just have to find it.  In the Good Gus series, it was evident in every story that the children and adults had potential.  The series is available on Kindle exclusively worldwide.  If you feel you are wasting your potential, after a visit to the library to study careers, take a break and read “Misplaced Trust.”  Who knows you may decide being an attorney is your choice!  The book is available on 24 Symbols, Apple, Nook, Kindle, Kobo, Page Foundry, Scribd, Playster and Tolino.

gypsy betterbettingvegas vacation Already, there are articles about the 2016 predictions. The financial stations on the TV and radio are discussing up and coming companies and how they will fare in 2016. They are discussing currencies and making predictions for the U.S. Dollar and the Euro. Then, there are the articles that appear to be about a new product but are really an advert for sales. They seem to be informing as to the qualities of the product and then their predictions that it will be the hottest product of 2016 leads you to believe that it’s impartial. However, if you re-read the article you will realize its a very well written ad. Of course, there are numerous headlines with dire predictions for 2016. They include the economy, global warming, war, financial devastation and elections particularly the presidential one in the United States. There are people who still believe in gypsies and psychics. There are television shows on in the states with psychics. They are women and appear to be quite successful. I have only seen the commercials, but their predictions and their personal knowledge of their subjects seems to be extensive.  The reactions of the participants seems genuine.  It appears that the psychics have the knowledge to discuss deceased people and then to offer their predictions for the participants’ future.  A few people I know who been to psychics who were given predictions were fairly accurate.  When I was young I was on a date with a boy and we were having coffee at a small restaurant.  A gypsy was going from table to table hoping to read palms and offering her predictions for the future.  The boy was furious and before I could even say yes or no, he told her to move along.  Needless to say, there was no second date.  The gypsy could have easily predicted that.  In Las Vegas, the predictions for fights, the presidential candidates, horse and dog races, and even who will win awards are money makers for the bookmakers.  There was a Chevy Chase movie about this very subject,” Vegas Vacation,”  and his son ended up winning several automobiles.  Chevy was against the betting until he saw the cars.  Let’s all hope that the predictions we make for ourselves for 2016 will be fulfilled.

friendsfriendshipYou never who your true friends  are until you are sick or in need. I had extreme food poisoning, believe it or not from yogurt. What I was impressed by most was that the true friends called to check on me and followed up even when I spent six hours in the emergency room of the hospital. As children we occasionally develop relationships with people who are our real friends for life. Wherever we go, whatever we do, they are always there if we need them. Growing as children we learn quickly about true friendship. If we are playing ball and accidentally break someone’s window, the true friends stay and face the music with you. They don’t run away and leave you to the consequences. Over time, as we went through school it became easier to figure out who were our real friends. They were the people when times were difficult were still your friend. They were the friends who stood by you when your parents’ financial situation changed and you no longer wore the “in” clothes, or you couldn’t play a sport as you didn’t have the extra money for the equipment, uniform, etc. They were the friends you could confide in if your parents were having trouble and then slit up. As we went into the workforce, there were new challenges as to whom were acquaintances, friends of circumstances, business associates, workmates, true friends or your enemy. When I first started working, it took me a while to figure it all out. It was easy enough to discern acquaintances, business associates and workmates’ relationships. It was the friends of circumstances that took a bit to figure out. At first when I was really successful, when I was much younger, I could not tell the difference. Gradually, as the economy changed, my business deteriorated; that’s when I discovered who my true friends really were. There was a movie with the late James Garner, “The Ultimate Gift” that gave a young man a reality check. He had inherited money from his parents and his grandfather. However, when the grandfather passed, he decided that the grandson still had potential and provided in his trust that all his money be taken away and he be forced to learn how to actually work. As soon as his money was gone, all his friends and girlfriend dropped him. Eventually he learned the value of money and hard work. He inherited the bulk of the grandfather’s estate. Once he had his money back, the girlfriend came right back, but he had learned that he was simply a friend of circumstance. All the characters in the Good Gus Series are real friends. Its a great example for children.

uk-sterling-money-notes-and-coins-100137436euro-chest-of-coins-shows-european-prosperity-and-economy-100246733Making a profit is essential to any business. Even governments make a profit through taxes. When people think about businesses, they generally focus on grocery stores, clothing shops, a butcher, a pastry shop, restaurants and just about any business you find at a mall or in a town. No one stops to think that banks, utility companies, medical facilities and even churches are in the business of making a profit. How you make a profit is another matter. As the economy deteriorated, did you notice a sharp increase in bank fees for example? I certainly did and they didn’t just raise them a little, they went up over two hundred percent. Realty companies are another example of profit making organizations. Many years ago I was in a group of people who invested in run down properties. We would put money into them, upgrade the property and then sell it. One time we visited an apartment complex that needed a complete renovation. As we toured the buildings I realized that the people living in those apartments were very poor. If we bought that complex, they surely would have to be evicted as once the repairs were completed, they wouldn’t be able to afford to live there. I refused to make an offer. I simply couldn’t see myself making their difficult situation worse. Making a profit is very important, but sometimes its more important to do the right thing. I saw an old show with a similar situation. A widow with three sons was trying to sell her home. A Realtor pointed out to a prominent citizen that it would be a good investment for him as the city was going to build a new freeway and the house would have to be sold to make way for the new road. The citizen decided to make an offer, but his wife objected. She felt that whatever business dealings he had, that it was better to be honorable. Eventually his conscience won out and he told the widow no. Naturally, it all ended well. The businesses in Pecos, Texas, home of the good Gus Series are indeed profit making shops. However, there isn’t any deceitfulness involved. As you contemplate your final choices for Christmas gifts for children, I hope you select a book from the Good Gus series .

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