…At The Old Ball Game.
The Big Guy is currently precariously balanced on his third strike.
I believe that darn near everyone deserves a Second Chance so I gave him that not all that long ago and watched him take some other writer to ‘the top’ while I floundered.
He’s done it again.
I KNEW that was what was going on. I KNEW IT. I did. I knew that was why I couldn’t feel him anywhere around me nor hear him whisper in my ear these past long months. I ignored it, as I did before. I put the blame on me, as I did before. I figured I lost my touch. It was all my fault. Cuz ya know I’m a hack and a wanna-be and All That Jazz.
Last week I received irrefutable confirmation that the Big Bastard was steppin’ out on me again. Undoubtedly that’s the main reason that less-than-adequate publishing contract fell into my lap. His way of trying to make amends of easing the blow he knew was going to get his fat head bit off.
Another way he tried to make amends before I found out was to come back and start whispering in my ear again. We started writing again. I was enjoying it.
Now. Not so much.
He’s officially on notice that he’s officially on hold and can look forward to a long slow painful death in “Kingdoms of War” should I ever chose to finish it. I think I’ll let Alena do him in. What do you think? Perhaps, after she’s saved his life for the umpteenth time, she’ll have an affair and leave him. How’s that? Of course he’ll be his typical asshole self and try to hold on to her, at which point, she’ll simply unload and blow him away.
If you’re thinking about throwing a fireball up my ass over it, sweetheart, I have a metal bat and I’m pretty good with it. So pitch well cuz it’ll be zoomin’ back at your fat head in no time.
I’m tired of hearing about ‘flings’ and how he ‘always comes home’ to me….’always’.
You’re making me puke with that crap! Go sell it somewhere else, brother. There ain’t no takers here anymore.
I’m going to rest a bit and see what other Muse comes to visit me. Hopefully one that can be faithful at least long enough to finish the project.
If nothing else, you have readers and they’re waiting. Why hold what I did against them?
Valid point. Ok. You die from Major Falls and in an incredible twist of Fate, Alena falls in love with Apollo. The End.
Have a nice eternity…asshole.
I’ve stayed away from the subject of Arizona until now. Congrats to the governor who proved she could actually get something…anything…right and vetoed the latest big of legislation that would have, in a very round-about, sneaky, and underhanded manner, made it “ok” to discriminate against any member of the General Population who walked into your store front so long as you could find a ‘religious reason’ to be a dick to them.
When I first heard about this the only thing I could think was; Arizona was a state in the 1960s…right? They didn’t miss the Civil Rights Movement, did they? You know that whole nasty upheaval where people marched in the street, were hung from trees, protested, burned crosses, fought, killed, died, and sometime just plain old disappeared in the name of Freedom. It wasn’t in a foreign country. It was right here in the Good Ol’ USA. At the end we, as a country, decided it wasn’t ok. We did appreciate discrimination and we would not tolerate it. We decided it didn’t matter what color your skin was just so long as the money in your pocket was green you could sit at the lunch counter or in the front of the bus or get a drink from a water fountain or walk down the street in broad daylight without fear. These were things all human beings deserved and should not be denied to them based on Race, Creed, Color or Religion.
Yeah, I know, we forgot to add ‘sexual orientation’ to that list when it was originally written. Sue us. We forgot to add a bunch of stuff to the US Constitution too which is why it has been amended so many times since it was originally written. The point is, when we realize our error we try to correct it going forward.
Contrary to misguided belief, the United States is NOT a “Christian Nation” and we never were and we never will be. Grab a history book and research the religious backgrounds of the Founding Fathers. You may be shocked to discover just how many Univerisalists there were among other religions, non-religions, and sects. The Founding Fathers understood the importance of religion but also understood the divisive nature of it which is why we do not now have nor will we ever have a Government Sanctioned Religion. You and me and John Q., we’re all free to worship as we choose.
Not to discriminate. Not to push their religious desires and beliefs off on everyone else.
We worship in houses designed to do so, among our own groups, and in our own homes. Government doesn’t tell those places they must allow everyone to be a member. The Court of Public Opinion might dictate differently but that’s separate from the Government.
Outside the stage of worship, out here in the Business World and indeed in the Real World, the only things that matter in a business transaction are:
The seller’s ability to deliver quality goods/services
The buyer’s ability to pay
When you open a business to the Public that means EVERYBODY. If you can’t handle EVERYBODY then go work for someone else in some other profession in which you do not have to deal with John Q. Public on a constant basis.
If we start enforcing religious beliefs in the business world where does that stop? I mean, you know, we have to accommodate EVERY religion, not just Christianity, so…..who wants to go first?
Is it ok if the Muslim store owner refuses service to the single woman who walks in? Or to anyone wearing a Star of David?
Is it ok if the Pagan store owner refuses service to anyone displaying a cross or crucifix?
Is it ok if the Jewish store owner refuses service to the Muslim? Or how about just any German that walks in?
There are hundreds of smaller but just as valid religions out there with their own rules and regs so…..Are you getting my point yet?
Worship in your Houses of Worship, at your dinner table, in your sewing circle, in your backyard…whatever. Out in Public you’re just another one of us, just another stranger on the bus. You’re no better and no worse.
If you can’t handle that maybe you should just stay home.
Let’s start with the important information….Google is changing. Yes it is. Google is watching out for your privacy now. Don’t laugh it’s kinda true. Web Masters and Mistresses, Dabblers and Wannabes take heed; The Keyword is no longer available to you through Google. That’s right, one of the things we pride ourselves on, keep track of, tweak endlessly, and use the trends to the best of our ability, the trusty Keyword is leaving us.
Google is now encrypting that information so web mistresses like me can’t see it. You may think that’s a good thing and I kinda agree but, for me, it’s a really bad thing. If I can’t see the words you typed in to get to my site I don’t know if you found relevant information or just crap. I don’t know if you actually searched for ME by typing ‘Lisa Beth Darling’ into Google of if you were just looking for ‘free ebooks’. If I don’t know that information I can’t track it, I can’t trend it, I can’t update it. In other words; Staying Relevant just got a whole lot harder. I imagine that it won’t be long before dumping of the Keyword META Tag will be The Thing To Do.
These are the current Keywords in my METAs on the site’s home page: lisa beth darling,lisa darling,dark romance,adult romance,romance books,romance stories,ebooks,ares, god of war,of war series,the heart of war,adult,novel,book,ebook,fiction
It’s like Fishing…the good kind, not like Phishing. You bait your hook with Keywords instead of worms and hope people bite–come into the site and hang out a while. You try to use the keywords that are the most relevant to your site. You can’t have too many of them. From what I can glean optimum is between 10-20 shorter than that you might not get picked up, longer than that it might get ignored. Same for the “content” META Tag. And, yes, of course, both Keyword and Content METAs should be very similar using as many of the same words as possible AND the first paragraph on your site should also contain those same Keywords. All that, combined with your verification codes for Google and Bing, will get you indexed the easiest. Your ranking depends on that because it depends on people being able to find you. THEN it’s all about how many people hit in for you and how many other places (not ‘guest blogs’ in the case of authors) link to you…not how many places you link to! It’s all a big rigmarole and a royal PITA that’s built upon the Keyword which has now been taken away.
I guess I should just go back to shouting the URL in the street or something.
Oh yeah. If you DO use Google Web Master…and you SHOULD! You should be registered, up and running, and checking in at least once a month! SO IF you DO use Google WebMaster…oh looky! Keywords! Yep, from there you can still breakdown the keywords people use to find your site FROM Google. I think. Not from Bing or Yahoo or YourFavoriteSearchEngine. So if you use a program like StatCounter like I do then for keywords, it’s obsolete for Google and you’ll have to use Google WebMaster.
Now let’s stay with the Internet…kinda…even as we move off it and into My Town. Yep, Good Ol’ New London the Little City I Love To Hate.
Downtown’s not doin’ good. Nope. Lots of businesses are a closin’. In a way it reminds me of my youth. Lots a business did a closin’ then too. Lots of white-washed windows and vacant stores. Yep. Sure was. Mostly that was the fault of Captain’s Walk. Once Upon a Time, the City of New London took State Street (once the Heart of Downtown New London) and closed it off. Yep. In their Infinite Wisdom they closed the whole damn thing, bricked it right over, blocked off both ends, and made it Walk Only…hence the renaming of Captain’s Walk.
Are you laughing yet? Shaking your head? Scratching it?
Yeah. I know.
But, to be fair, they did build parking garages too.
Nobody wants to park in a parking garage…nobody. Studies bear that out, ya know. They’re seen as dingy, dark, dirty, unsafe, and crime ridden little hovels. So it doesn’t matter how ‘convenient’ (which it never is) or how ‘inexpensive’ (which it never is) the place happens to be…no one will want to use it unless they absolutely positively HAVE TO.
Yeah, it didn’t take long for stores to close. Nope. But that’s mostly because, since pickin’s were very easy, the crime rate went up right along the same time. Funny, huh? Weird. How could anyone possibly have foreseen such a thing?
Ok, skip ahead to 2014.
Businesses are closing downtown, some that have been there between 50-70 YEARS. That’s sad. It really is tragic.
And, naturally, it’s ALL Mayor Daryl Finizio’s fault damnit!
No, it’s not, not by a long shot but if you listen to a small vocal group that nasty outsider bastard took a very beautiful and bountifully prosperous city and turned it into Skid Row…or something like that.
He didn’t. Duh.
Honestly, it’s really just a Sign of the Times.
Klingerman Travel is considering moving away from New London after 52 years. Awwwwww. That’s heartbreaking. But, my guess would be, they won’t do any better anywhere else because, let’s face it, who uses a travel agent anymore? We have Expedia and Travelocity and TriVago and Priceline and Hotels.com…who in their right mind uses the travel agent? In my humble opinion this industry is destined to go by the wayside for domestic travel. Foreign travel they might hold on to a small market…maybe.
The Book-A-Zine CLOSED! OMG! The PORN STORE CLOSED! Holy Shit! Now THAT’S BAD! Seriously, from the bottom of Aunty Moon’s aging heart…that’s bad! You might think people aren’t having SEX anymore!
The Book-A-Zine was the epitome of a “dirty bookstore” in every possibly way. But mostly it was just plain old filthy. Nasty. Disgusting. Only the most hard-up perv would go in there. Yes, despite the tales of ‘booths’ and ‘upstairs rooms’, I did venture inside but we discussed that in detail in a different blog entry. It was a place that you would never want anyone to see you coming/going from because it was just icky. BUT, here’s the rub, for many decades it was the ONLY store of its kind with a 15 mile radius so if you wanted to play you had to go there.
Enter the Internet. Shop in the privacy of your own home.
More importantly….Enter the really NICE Adult Stores in Groton and Buh-Bye Book-A-Zine. It was written in the stars long before the doors closed, in fact I’d venture to say that the second the doors of In The Mood opened the Book-A-Zine’s days were numbered. Say what you want about “the porn store” but it makes big money and even bigger money when it scales up and caters to adults who aren’t afraid of sex or being sensual or exploring their sexual nature. And, ya know, personally, intimate toys aren’t something I can really shop for online (although I’m dying to get something from Adam & Eve!) I like to SEE them, HOLD them, and give them a good once over before plunking down my hard-earned money. And I don’t go ‘cheap’ when it comes to my toys. Nope. That’s the one area I allow myself to indulge.
But on the It Sorta Breaks My Heart side…two long-term drinking/restaurant establishments have also closed; Stash’s Cafe and The Bank Street Cafe. Both had very Rough n Tumble reputations! My Goodness! I didn’t step foot in either place until I was in my 40′s! When I did go in I swear I heard my mother screaming at me to GET OUT of there!
These places catered to bikers or did before Pfizer moved in and then moved out. Both had been plummeting downhill for quite a while before they actually closed. The last time we at Stash’s Cafe we swore we’d never go back it was absolutely HORRIBLE. As for The Bank Street Cafe, well sometimes they had a working kitchen and sometimes they didn’t. It was really Hit or Miss on that one. For me, it’s difficult to go to a bar, hang out (especially before I got my Blu!), drink, and have a good time if there isn’t anything to EAT. Personally, I think it should be a LAW; if you serve alcohol you must serve FOOD. I don’t care what kind, you can microwave hot dogs for all I care but something. Quite a while back the City became Biker Unfriendly when it lost Pappy’s Run and it lost the bikers. The City thought that would be great except the bikers had money. They spent it downtown where they used to hang out at Stash’s and The Bank Street Cafe. They don’t anymore, not so much anyway.
The one business we’ve lost in the last few years that REALLY made me sad was Robert’s Audio. I almost cried when they left downtown. I considered them the Last Bastion of Real Music. They were on Bank Street for more years than I’ve been alive…I’m pretty sure about that one. Not to fear, at least not yet, they moved to Waterford. Sooner or later they will go belly up. iTunes and Beats Audio and such. Then again, with any iota of luck, maybe not, there are still a few true audiophiles in the world. Perhaps enough to keep a place like that in business in the face of the Digital Age.
But, you know, Never Fear The Coast Guard is Here. They’re going to build a new “national” museum downtown on land the City gave them. Yeah. Gave. Hate them so much! Both of them. This museum is going to save New London, or at least downtown, in a few years.
Never mind that they already have a museum that no one ever visits. Who cares about that? This NEW museum will really rake ‘em in. Just like the USS Nautilus Museum did in Groton.
(Yeah, you got it, Precious.)
Gee, I miss Captain’s Walk.