The Ides of March – 15th

Well, it’s a day after the Ides of March and I believe I survived it!

However, this Blog is still in recovery process after some extensive work by me to get rid of my old theme and the clutches it appeared to have on the internal site processes.

Even now, I don’t appear to be able to change my theme again……… but I’ll keep working on it hopefully. It’s a marvel where optimism can get you!!

If you’d like to help me test it then please try to leave me a comment and in return I’ll try to reply . . nothing else is guaranteed at present.

Yours for now



Welcome – to Internet Marketing Reviews!

Updated 12th March 2015

Hi, I’m John, your Webmaster for this Review trip. . . . . . . ..

Mini John . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

This is a News Flash – 12th March 2015
This Site is being revamped and the theme changed  – I’m working on it ……….
“Wait Out” as Military Radio-Speak goes!

I had to do this “under fire” as some weird bug crept through from my old Amazing Grace theme and when I upgraded it I lost access to many posts, and others were showing up with no Theme at all.  So, I’m busy checking that out and also revising the 40 odd Plugins I’d been testing here

Original Post Revised

Now – despite the title, this “Major Review” Blog won’t be too military as I AM retired and HAVE actually adapted to life out of Uniform!!   In fact, since my Army days (and there were a lot of them) I’ve also been a Doctors’ Surgery Manager, a Seaside Hotelier, and a Retailer…….. so my Front Line has constantly changed.  As I write this update we’re hoping there are no more floods to come (though York has escaped a lot of the worst weather and storms) and I’m trying to relax at home, catching up on what’s happening OnLine and getting back into Blogging with a purpose.

It isn’t actually at all relaxing so far (apart from the tea and choccy biscuits!) – as I’ve spent ages this week trying to get my new “Paid Account” at Akismet to accept the API that I ordered nearly 2 weeks ago!  AND, Google suddenly decided that they didn’t want Roboform to work in their Chrome Browser….. Gnashing of Teeth and huge curses flying around at that – but you can probably guess how little I’ll be using Chrome until that ridiculous situation is changed! I may even have to move my “Command and Conquer” Games access over to Firefox and start using Greasemonkey Scripts instead of the Google Chrome pack – so you can tell just how annoyed I am with Bully Boy Google!

Twitter, nor EMail Marketing are dead. So don’t believe any rumours about that.  And I can definitely see that SEO is far from dead either, though what we “Marketers” may concentrate on might have altered in emphasis a bit I believe it is for the better as Content and Relevance have always been a key issue for anyone visiting a Web Site.

Enough blather – I need to tell you that I’ve been around the Internet Marketing scene for about 9 years now, reading, watching, learning, attending Workshops and Mastermind Groups and buying a mountain of PLR, Software and “How to do almost everything blindfold” material!!  I know from this experience that it is possible to earn a living On Line, but that the MAIN KEY TO SUCCESS  is – you guessed it – Taking Action – and then sticking with that plan to see it through.

Are you looking for that elusive secret method, or the “Magic Button to success”?
Don’t – ignore the hype and stick to a few simple principles to get started in this field. There are so many ways of succeeding on line that looking for the one method that suits you can result in the common affliction of Information Overload! It can be avoided.

My aim here is to provide information from my own experience, or from trusted friends in the business, so that you can benefit from that and NOT have to waste your own time and money trying every new shiny program or membership that comes along to distract you.  I just hate hype, and there is a lot of it about!!

This is a dotcom Web Address so I’ll try to spell in US style, but occasionally that old British Army training will just FORCE me to use a UK format – so you’ll just have to get used to that – OK!!?

I suppose you’re expecting me to set off by saying “By The Left….” but I just walk normally now, so I’ll have to leave the marching to you, if that’s what takes your fancy?!  I don’t even slap my leg with a swagger stick and say “Now Hoist This In Chaps”………… but I will try to emphasize anything I consider really important.

OK, we’re off and running again then…….. I’ll get cracking on a few reviews I already have in mind, and I’ve taken out those that were outdated.

No Opt In, No Links, No Sales Pitch………… this is just a friendly introduction!

An OnLine (and Offline) friend of mine (Randy Smith) is very keen on encouraging all his readers to “Love Life and Enjoy It With Passion”, and though this won’t actually be my catch phrase I do echo his sentiment……… ENJOY it while you can!!

8 Cotswold Way
YO32 9RN



The Bright Side of Life – Lies in Streamlining

You’ll all know it, and now I’m singing it too…………….
Here we go, here we go, here we go-hoh!!

Yes, I’m on the move, down-sizing from 4 bedroom + study + double garage to 2 bedrooms and a small garage.
It’s a bit of a strain for me (as a confirmed hoarder) but it’s sorely needed (my wife tells me) because I’m clogging up my life with a load of stuff I don’t need (and no longer use).

At the risk of sounding like a Vicar, you know how they have to find an everyday link to the point of their sermon every Sunday, I want you to think of my situation and change of lifestyle in relation to your own hard drive!
Have you clogged that up with a load of PLR and Reseller Sites that in your heart of hearts you just “know” you’ll never use?
Well, I’ll bet you have – most of us do it, but we really should model ourselves more on those that streamline, stick to one project at a time, and as a result achieve success – which far outweighs the doubtful advantage of having “material to fall back on”.

I’m finding it a relief to shed so much of my personal baggage, despite it going against the very grain of my natural hoarder’s habits. Not only that, as I will no longer be a home-owner but a tenant, I reckon to be outsourcing some of my problems so that I can better concentrate on my lifestyle and enjoyment. Our 45th Wedding Anniversary comes up in June and this year we won’t be tied to running our City Centre Shop 7 days a week…… so even a few days away somewhere will seem like a major holiday, and something we haven’t been able to enjoy for many years now! Hooray – here we go, here we go, here we go-hoh!!!!!

The common saying goes that “Life isn’t all a bed of roses”. I don’t really agree with that, seeing that they can be very thorny, scratchy plants, despite their marvellous fragrances. I believe that maybe Life IS a bed of roses after all. If you look on the dark side of life you get caught up in a mass of thorns worse than Brer Rabbit’s Briar Patch. But look on the bright side and you find a way through the thorns to breathe in those wonderful smells that can transport you to warm happy places! Oh dear, it’s sounding like some 60’s Heaven now, but I think you’ll see what I mean.

So, apart from spreading a little love of ROSES what the heck am I trying to say here? Not just another “Focus on one project at a time” but take a wider look at the way you are living and working….. plan to streamline one element of it at a time, de-clutter, and STOP collecting mountains of Gigabytes that you will probably never use. Clear out your drawers too, get rid of all those old pens, the part used notebooks and the last decade of diaries. Bin all the ads, the get rich quick scams that you’ve collected for a second look later, and just make your whole life a lot simpler and clearer. I’m working on that, dreaded starting – but now it’s actually enjoyable and helps my mindset enormously!

Always look on the bright side of life – and streamline for fun as well as success.

See you again once I’ve moved and set up again…….

Focus on Productive Tasks

Focus on Productive Tasks

Do you already have a sign near your work station, or stuck on your Laptop, asking you – no DEMANDING of you – -

Is This Productive Activity?

I’ve seen this tip before, but yesterday it really struck home because I’d come home from work and was sitting at my PC enjoying some browsing before tackling the tasks I’d been making notes about all day (whilst manning our shop).
I saw this tip again – and realised that what I was doing was not Productive Activity at all.  My focus was enjoyment and NOT building my business!

This kicked me into gear and I then spent a while reviewing a new product that Randy Smith will shortly be issuing…. No, it isn’t called FOCUS!

But a kick should not have been necessary at all – I do now need to earn on line, and I really want to build a new business.
Well then – why is focus so important?

Lack of focus is the main killer of internet dreams!

It shouldn’t be hard to focus…. should it?

Then why is it so darned difficult for so many of us?
I thought I knew how to focus.  I spent nearly 30 years in the Army and there were many times when I was absolutely and totally focused… I’ve had Hobbies where (according to my wife) I was addictively focused – to the total exclusion of all else (meals/Bank Holidays/children – the lot!  I played a lot of sport and in Shooting and Athletics I only succeeded by being very, very focused.

So, what’s so different about Internet Marketing?  Why do I find it so difficult to achieve not just a focused state, but one where I am focused on the right actions and the right material?

Well, it sounds simple, but I’ve been battling with it for some time now and still find it difficult.  So today, when I watched a video by Veit Schenk, I was so impressed with his insights and viewpoint on this that I decided to post this immediately and pass on my enlightenment. No Affiliate profit intent – just that I think this may help you IF you too find it hard to focus on the correct goal for you.

I was reading a post in the Warrior Forum (doing some research) and I followed a link to Dr Veit Schenk’s video on focus.

Here is his link again so that you too can have a look at what he says –

And now that I’ve completed my simple task, I’ll get back to “Google Places” where I do have a focus to concentrate on!

Signs of Aging – Grown A Beard

Grown a Beard

Sometimes during your daily round I’ll bet you too suddenly find an odd memory popping up that seems unrelated to whatever you are doing at the time….. I had one today that puzzled me for ages!

I was carving a few slices off the cold turkey for a quick lunch before my 3 year old grandson descended on me when my mind wandered off onto angles of slice (off the turkey breast). I suddenly remembered the angles of attack a seagull once made when diving at one of my sisters on a Cornish beach (Mawgan Porth).
It was determined to peck her and despite my hurling a volley of pebbles from the stream it had at least 4 attempts from some distance out before I finally hit it and it rapidly left the scene. She was scared stiff, having been attacked by birds before (our gander for one), but we never understood why this seagull should have taken such an immediate and aggressive dislike to her.
My curiosity today however was, why would that memory flash back to me?  It happened about 50 years ago !

Later in the day it came to me, whilst finding videos of steam trains clearing snow (Youtube is great news for Grandpas trying to entertain 3 year-olds). I remembered having thrown turkey slices in the air from the deck of our liner when we landed in Liverpool on New Year’s Day in 58 – to feed circling seagulls!! Strange memory, so darned old!!

Straight from that experience we caught a train down to Herefordshire where we were to live with our grandmother for a while.

So there is logic in the sequence of some odd memories, even if we don’t always recognise it at the time. Do you have an example you’d care to add in a comment?  I’d like to prove that I’m not the only one whose mind works this way!!

I find that odd snippets of Internet Marketing pop up like this too, and today I determined to keep a small diary for 2011 where I can quickly note down ideas, a memory or two, and inspirations like these so that I can make sense of them and act on them appropriately when I have time to stop and concentrate.
Making use of pages in this Blog is one of these ideas (I’ve already filled a couple of pages of this NEXT year’s diary!!).
It occurred to me that Blog Posting is often not a suitable pattern for a logical sequence of articles and that unless you often use a “Sticky” Plug-In to keep a post at the top you will maybe lose an effect you needed to maintain for longer than one post life…..

So, when I can fit it in, I will be changing the layout here to one more suited to my aims.

Meanwhile, got to get some shut-eye, it’s back to my Day-Job in the morning and it’s already 1.30 am.

In my next post though, I’ll do more than reminisce and intend to tell you more of my plans for 2011 and how they can benefit you.

“Thanks for the Memory” – and for listening, have a relaxing but festive week.

Birds, Pensioners and Snow – Reflections and Forecasts

These are personal reflections, written wearing both my hat and coat on a bitter, frosty, mince pie laden, morning in York (I love Mince Pies).
But, if you’re looking for my keywords and a championship example of finest SEO then you may find you’re wasting your time!


Are Squitty, Scratchy things that often annoy me, yet often also leave me feeling quite emotional, and sometimes crap on me from any height available!
I’ve killed a lot of them in my lifetime, sometimes for fun (nasty Ba*****), sometimes to protect other birds or baby animals (shot a magpie that was attacking a kitten up a tree)  and sometimes for food – YES I’ve eaten a lot of them, and enjoyed almost every one (except the pigeon full of buckshot!!!).
But I mention them today with a soft spot showing through my grizzly bearded veneer, I don’t like to see them suffer in the cold!
So, I’ve been out to the nearby pond, risking breaking a hip or leg on the icy paths, and I’ve fed the ducks, moorhens, and seagulls (yes – even the flippin’ seagulls).  With a shiver I watched their reflections against a cold blue sky, in both wrinkly ice and the remaining open water … Then picked my way home and piled our Bird Table with suet chips – purchased at great expense in RSPB bags.

Now – here’s where I must pop in my second sub-title (see, a bit of SEO after all!).


Yes – I am a Pensioner! But it just means that I’ve passed my 65th Birthday, NOT given up my love for life, my dreams, or my natural instinct to fight unfairness or inequality!  So, I do feed the birds on a cold morning, but actually I’ve done that for years anyway.  I just have to tread more warily now as I’ve seen too many old codgers put out of action with broken hips and I don’t want to be one of those thanks!


I always had a love/hate relationship with SNOW!  I’ve thrown it, dug it, slid on it in all sorts of ways, fallen in it, even slept in it – and built enormous snowmen with it, some even 11 feet tall (got a picture of one somewhere…)…. but I recall the days before fleece and quilted clothes – when boys still wore short trousers in Winter with a pair of black wellies and some wet woolly gloves!! F-R-E-E-Z-I-N-G

I’m looking back on many Winters….. one of my earliest memories is of a foot of snow perched on top of the old black pump in our backyard (before we had any running water and taps), it was probably 1947 or 48. I remember mild Maltese Winters with “balmy” sea breezes, the bitter sub -30 ones in Canada and Norway, weeks spent in freezing German Forests and Farms hoping the Russians weren’t daft enough to venture West in such cold conditions, and the usually damp, chilly UK variety of Winter where snow is usually just seen on Christmas Cards (except in 62/63 where we skated and sledded for weeks instead of playing Hockey or Rugby!).  I do recall days just like today though, also spent in North Yorkshire snow and ice, training young Army Recruits in basic winter survival skills (which I had learned in Norwegian snow-holes and in total white-out treks above the tree line).

Reflections and Forecasts

So the headings above all fall into my Reflections, and also figure in my Forecasts.

Haven’t you just been suffering some reflections?  Well, “yes” – but this isn’t an English Essay or a dissertation! I am just reflecting on little snapshots of my life as I look out of the window at the weak sun and hard ice around my house.

I recall spending a hungry Christmas Day on a long, long train, crossing the snowy, frozen wastes of the Canadian Prairies in 1957. My family all had Beans on Toast for Christmas Dinner that year as we’d lost all our money in a failed emigration attempt in moving from the UK to Alberta…. we got back to UK to live with my Grandma for a few months with only three shillings and sixpence between us.
…… I’ve always had beans on toast for Christmas Breakfast since then – just to remind me that times can be REALLY tough, and to count my blessings!

As I’ve said – I normally love SNOW!  I’ve thrown it, eaten it, built igloos with it, slid on it in all sorts of ways, fallen in it, even slept in it – Norwegian Snow Holes.

But this year I’ve already come to hate it.

Not because of Snow and the Birds, or because of Snow’s effect on my old bones as a Pensioner, it’s just that it’s probably killed off our chance of surviving this Recession through into 2011 because it has affected the Christmas trading at our Candles and Gifts Shop in town!
We’ll still trade well, we are doing, because we bought in some lovely goods, but other goods have not arrived – held up somewhere in bad weather, and many of our potential customers just won’t make it into York, or are rushing home early purely because of this exceptionally early dash of “Deep-Mid-Winter”.  We count on taking half our annual turnover in these few weeks, and have done so in our last 7 years…. but not in snow of course!

So – it may not yet be Beans on Toast for Christmas Dinner this year, but who knows if we’ll have anywhere to live in January, let alone run a car or plug into Broadband and use this computer???????
The great unknown looms before us, and it doesn’t look a very pleasant prospect. I cannot really forecast events, but have to hope that we don’t receive too much more SNOW, can survive the cold and reduced heating as PENSIONERS, and manage to find the odd BIRD to cook to keep us going!
I can only do my best to start monetizing my On Line work, try to maintain an On Line presence to support this, and hope to keep a patient line of Creditors fed with increasingly large scraps from my growing On Line Business.

Now – Do Enjoy your own Reflections – and Wish me Luck – but DON’T Wave me Goodbye!

My New Word Press Theme – JVPress

My New Word Press Theme – JVPress

I know – I’ve been trying out different themes for a while now without finding a more suitable one than Amazing Grace which, despite its lack of powerful link text, still appeals to me – I just plain like it!
However, I really need a theme that gives me a broader topic area, with just one sidebar.
JVPress can supply that, plus a lot more – just how much more, and how well it will suit my revamped site I have yet to determine for sure…..

JVPress is still in pre-launch

So far, I believe I have found what I’m looking for and I’m busy trying out JVPress.  Although it is still in pre-launch
I’ll add more when I’ve had time to work on it  – – – –

BUT I’m currently prioritising a training course I’m doing on using keyword research to maximize my chances of producing an earning Site using Amazon products….. my previous attempts having failed to produce a positive ROI.

Oh – here’s a tip, one little site for you to try out if you’re looking for a promise of Traffic and Ranking – Zoom Up Google’s… Rankings

Wait Out, as they say, and I’ll JVPress this theme out into action yet.  I believe it may have affected a few of the previous comments, so I apologize if I seem to have messed it up again – it’s these little imperfections that actually make me really “perfect” you know (to quote my wife’s favourite response to any minor criticism!).

Keep on trucking, I’ll be back, I’ll be JVPress – ganged into it!

Broken Links v Prioritising

Broken Links v Prioritising

Thanks for letting me know about the broken links in my Blog – and my apologies for not having fixed them all yet.  It’s been hard NOT to fix them as I wanted that to be a priority!  I hate faults and any imperfections that I think I can fix (given time).

However, I’m also doing my best – prioritising hard and keeping myself organised – so I’m actually using this as an example of self control – to prove that I can keep my word and WILL make my News Site and correct Page Building/Adding to my many other sites a higher priority than correcting a few links on this Blog. (Note the Privacy Policy and About the Major pages now in place!)

I apologise again for broken links though, I must have messed them up when I was trying to learn how to best use the Socrates and Flexsqueeze Themes that I attempted to set up here………. but failed…. oops, slipping back into “Old-Speak” ….  I should have said ……….but haven’t yet succeeded – haha!!

Just as an update so that you know a little more about what I ‘m doing besides just prioritising!! …….. some would keep it secret until completed but this is meant to be a Hype Free area so it’s only fair to let you in on this……..

I am currently still evaluating several different Site Installation Software Packages but have got so involved with the nitty gritty of two of them in particular, and the Manual Site Builder with which I am comparing them, that I am regularly behind my preset deadlines and run out of time for anything else.  I can so far say that I don’t really find JP’s Site Profit Bot a very useful tool for me (I just don’t like the appearance of the Sites or the manner in which I should add content), and also found myself utterly swamped by the vast array of facilities in Chris “The Day Job Killer’s” Affiliate X.
CB Predators is a total “Dog’s Breakfast” and just goes to show that a reasonable product can be ruined by poor planning and abysmal customer support!  Talk about prioritising, it’s easy to see what they had at Number One on their list – and it wasn’t customer satisfaction!
Did anyone else notice Chris Fox and co asking their users to write the manual for them????   How crass can you get?

Edwin Boiten’s “geeky” but very promising program “Octopus” as yet remains untested, though I have now succeeded in completing its installation – an achievement I’m very pleased with as it proved quite difficult for a non-techy like me. I must add yet another vote of thanks to Dan Thomson at D9Hosting – Thanks Dan, your support desk is second to none!!!

Chris Sempel’s Affiliate Genie looks very useful, but I’m only part way into that – sharing time on that one with Marty Roz’s Affiliate Pilot Pro system…….. which I’ve found very impressive so far.  I like his WordPressDirect anyway so maybe I’m a little biased!  (I have to mention that having Keith Baxter as a partner must make a difference there!)

I can’t really comment on the value of Multi Profit Websites as I have not yet completed the first one – I find them a bit dated, and not as easy to adapt to what I currently have in mind as I had expected.   I had to leave Aaron Danker’s Rocket Launcher to some one else to evaluate as I just ran out of funds at the time it came out – haha, an old problem eh?!

I couldn’t possibly afford Nathan Anderson’s Niche ATM system either, or some of the other hugely expensive automated programs that have been pouring out this summer, but I am determined to fully test Ben Shaffer’s “No Cost Traffic System” and that is currently receiving high priority in my daily work. A lot to learn, but well worth it I’m sure.

Prioritising even further…

There are other programs that I’m just scooting around because again, they aren’t on my priority list…..

But I will shortly begin to monetize this Blog and then will give my honest views of programs I would support, along with some of the necessary links.  …………. another hour passed by, but this time it was with one of my “Golf Balls” (if you’ve read one of my other posts).  My 2 year old Grandson Oscar wanted to play “Bubbles” so we’ve had a ball chasing hundreds of them round the lawn……. great fun eh!  Luckily I ran out of Bubble Fluid or we’d be there for another hour yet!

Well, maybe this isn’t a complete post, and it jumps around like an interrupted diary insert – but “it’s all mine folks”, and it sure beats crawling along an Afghan ditch waiting to come across an inevitable IED with no way around it and nowhere to shelter…… I feel for those lads, it can’t be easy!

Don’t forget now, be careful out there (you Hillstreet Blues fans)!
Just my roundabout way of prioritising security……

PS – Hot Damn – this is one topic I’ll never complete in its current form!  Now I also have to contend with AutoBlog Samurai, Stealth Profit Machines, Word Press Direct Platinum, Affiliate Pilot Pro, Ed Charkow’s WordPress Monthly, and a whole host of other “Rapid Site Builder” and “Controller” programs.

Never mind, it’s all great fun isn’t it?!  Have you tried the new PLR Monthly or John T’s Free Web Site Monthly yet?
It’s all a question of Prioritising – haha

My Lifestyle Guide – Take Care Of Your Golf Balls

What are your Lifestyle Principles?

Do you have any?  Do you NEED any? Isn’t Lifestyle just “Natural?”

My friend Randy Smith is always commenting on lifestyle features and effects – telling his Readers to enjoy “Loving Life, Living it with Passion, And Passing it on!”
That sounds good to me, but I wouldn’t dream of “stealing” his pitch!
Randy recently posted a very amusing but thought provoking article based on a variety of quotes from Leviticus (guess who sent it him? – OK, it was me, I just didn’t think of using it in my Blog!).

However, it really set me thinking about the vagaries of human beliefs and just how strong an effect they can have on so many lives.  Now I’m not one to discuss religions, or religious lifestyle, “Each to their own” is my maxim, as long as it doesn’t harm anyone who happens to disagree!

However, I’ve been giving some thought to my own “lifestyle” views. It’s odd isn’t it, how we all have some idea of how we think we live, but don’t necessarily find it easy to spell it out if someone dares to ask – “What’s your lifestyle secret?”

I’m not usually stuck for words but I couldn’t think of a short answer to that when I was recently working on a part of the iClick University “Homework” that Richard Butler set me.  I do have a lifestyle guide, or theme, but it’s based on a two page document.

I was reminded of it again today when talking to an old ex-Army friend of mine who is now bed-ridden with a long term illness.  We talk every now and then, and I often write to George (in the MOST non-PC fashion possible) as I know that it can give him a lift – I understand what makes him laugh, we share the same sense of humour!!  George was talking about the need to ignore the unfairness of life in general and the importance of being positive and knowing just what things were really important to a person.  So I printed out and laminated a copy of my Lifestyle “Golf Balls” theme for him – I posted it too, he should have it tomorrow!  As a result of all this serious thinking (very hard work for a “skimmer” like me) I thought I should post it here as well because I do feel that it may help to nudge you into giving your own beliefs a bit of a stretch and a run through the “Do I still feel this way?” tester.

Should I Call This My Lifestyle: – Mantra – Creed – Doctrine – Guideline – or is it just good old Common Sense?

I picked up the original of this Lifestyle Comment in my mail a couple of years ago, I don’t even remember who sent it me, but over the next year it slowly became the mainstay of my outlook and approach to lifestyle in general.  My son Philip has also adopted it as one of his reference points, and I believe he even uses it in part of his training patter in the Police Force.

Here it is – a Lifestyle Principle In A Jar -…….. simple but so very clear!

The Mayonnaise Jar and Two Beers

When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 Beers.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him.  When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.  He then asked the students if the jar was full.  They agreed that it was.

The professor picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar.  He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls.  He then asked the students again if the jar was full.  They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar.  Of course, the sand filled up everything else.  He asked once more if the jar was full.  The students responded with a unanimous ‘yes.’

The professor then produced two Beers from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the grains of sand.  The students laughed.

‘Now,’ said the professor as the laughter subsided, ‘I want you to recognize that this jar represents your lifestyle.  The golf balls are the important things— your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favourite passions— and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.

The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your car.

The sand is everything else—the small stuff.  ‘If you put the sand into the jar first,’ he continued, ‘there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls.  The same goes for life.  If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

‘Pay attention to your lifestyle, to the things that are critical to your happiness.  Spend time with your children.  Spend time with your parents.  Visit with grandparents.  Take time to get medical checkups.  Take your spouse out to dinner.  Play another 18.  There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal.  Take care of the golf balls first— the things that really matter.  Set your priorities.  The rest is just sand.’

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the Beer represented.

The professor smiled and said, ‘I’m glad you asked.’

The Beer just shows you that no matter how full your life may seem, there’s always room for a couple of Beers with a friend.

“Each to their own” is my lifestyle maxim, as long as it doesn’t harm anyone who happens to disagree!
But – remember your Golf Balls!

Better Than A Cardboard Box

“Think Positive” and “Count Your Blessings”

These are personal comments, not much of an Internet Marketing slant, but maybe with some educational value – like “Think Positive” and “Count Your Blessings”!!

I posted this a couple of months back in Joel Comm’s World Village Site, but as my Blog is undergoing a hefty revamp I thought I’d add it here, now that I am officially an Old Age Pensioner! Please bear in mind that this was written in March.

I am redesigning Major-Reviews – it’s a Positive Move!

Yes, I am redesigning Major-Reviews, and also building a Major-Reviews-Bonus site – plus adding a DOTedu Major-Reviews site too (plus a Blogger Blog Major-Reviews which is already lurking somewhere in the depths of Google, busily breeding a host of personal spiders — ??). I’m obviously quite keen on this positive style site title!

So, here’s a little bit of my personal history, just out of random interest……… and don’t worry, this isn’t the bit where I lived in Keith’s Car, Jonny’s Back Office, Omar’s Cubicle or Mike’s Cardboard Box!

In The Beginning…………..

I first took a gasp of English air 6 days after VE Day, in a rural part of Lancashire on the wetter side of the Pennines.

Being born so soon after such a historic and long awaited moment swayed my parents’ minds towards patriotic endeavour. Hence my initials were inevitably declared as VJ, reflecting their hopes for a quick resolution of the Japanese War that still raged on so far from that soggy, windswept Lakebank that was our home at the time!

Being declared on my Birth Certificate as “Victor John” was one thing, but as neither parent really liked “Victor” as a name I was always known as John….. and thus began my lifelong battle with a split personality! – Forever since those far off sulphurous days in the swirling yellow smog of the downwind sector of Manchester’s shadow I have been “Victor” to Banks, Customs and Excise, Doctors’ Receptionists and just about every other official body I brushed swords with, but Jolly John to everyone else – from School Cleaner to Admiral!

Have you come across these books in the “From You To Me” Series? They’re the latest secret weapon that the youth of UK today have in their armoury to tease and torture their worthy elders. You’re just recovering from a hefty dose of Brussel Sprouts at Christmas (because you’ve always been taught to “eat up your greens”), or sliding down into your armchair after a heavy portion of Birthday Cake (does anyone really like marzipan?), when slap-bang-wallop! Next thing you know you have a wonderfully wrapped bundle covered in paper and three rolls of sellotape thrust under your nose – while several little darlings demand that you force your way into it quickly, so that they can get back home to their Weewees, or whatever it is that they prance about with half the day and night! When you finally force your way in (thank goodness for Swiss Army Pocket Knives) to wonder at the delights of the treasured “Prezzie” what do you find????? A book resembling a Diary, which you are then duly obliged to fill with explicit detail in answer to some of the most challenging questions a senior citizen can be asked. (I mean to say – “Tell Me About Your Wedding Day” is either an invitation to Libel, something for after the Readers’ Watershed, or merely the call for a “How the Heck should I remember – ask your Grandma, she’s never let me forget it either!”

Anyhow, I digress a bit….. what was I talking about? Was it positivity or focus? The font I’m using is far too small for my poor eyesight and my slippers keep sliding off as I pull myself forward to peer at the screen. Still, let’s do be positive,  it beats standing at the Kitchen Worktop having “Grandma” tell me yet again how she’s finished all 3 of her books whereas I’m only half way through my first. She always could remember all the embarrassing things I’ve done, whereas I was never allowed to mention hers – ON PAIN OF DEATH!

Maybe I’ll get away with one or two here, if I can recall them…….. it was on the Royal Yacht Brittania that one occurred and everyone else had a good laugh but Grandma. We were in Montreal at the time, doing our bit to keep the former Colony civil, when we were invited to one of those Cocktail Parties where we Brits fly the flag and get to talk as loudly as we like in English whilst the natives lurk about speaking French as Frogishly as they can! Oh no, digressing again, I knew I’d used the wrong keyword for this Village homily, maybe I’ll change it to “sorry, where was I?”!

We dressed up, drove to the harbour, climbed aboard (actually I believe it was a rather splendid Gangplank!) and bent forward to cross the Royal threshold through one of those Bulkheads built for the mini sailors of old. as we stood upright again before three beautifully groomed and gold-braid bedecked “Admirals” Grandma’s belt popped off and fell to the floor.

Before I could pick it up for her and head for the Brandy Dry (“Horses Necks”) she scrabbled for it herself whilst I apologised – I felt obliged to – and said “Sorry Admiral, she’s always dropping them”! Neither of us was prepared for the sight of three rows of gold braid heaving up and down as if in a choppy swell, as gales of stifled laughter burst from the red faced august bodies of Naval Blue before us. Just one of life’s little moments to me, it was a grand evening with the Marine Band playing on deck in the sunset – another rich thread in the golden tapestry of life……… apparently not quite how Grandma saw it.  My ears still ring today, but I did manage to drive home after many of those delicious “Horse’s Necks” that the Royal Navy lavish on anyone who’ll entertain them!!

Well, long past my bedtime, I still work for a living (if you can call it that). As you just may have gathered, it’s now only just over a month till the 65th Anniversary of VE Day……. so I’m almost 65 and could, in Utopia, consider retirement. But here, I’ve got Grandma to keep happy, so I have to find some way of earning a pension…….. maybe I’ll write about that little village in Herefordshire…….. next time I remember how to get back in here – think positive, I WILL be back!

PS: – Feel free to take a look at another of my “Life Comments” at My Golf Balls

“Positively” –  Byee for now

Grizzly Grandpa John   –  (Major, Royal Corps of Signals – Retired, but Positive)