What I sang while washing my nasties

shower-headThe house was freakin’ FREEZING when I got up this morning, so I got the water nice and steamy hot in the shower before jumping in, and boy, it felt good.

And as usual I started singing to myself, and what came to mind, appropriately enough, was one of my holiday favorites, “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.”

I’ve always loved that old 1940s tune, no matter who’s singing it. You know the song. It’s a guy and gal singing back and forth, and the guy’s trying to convince the gal she should stay with him for a romantic evening by the fire because, well, it’s freakin’ freezing outside.

So a few years back, a friend gave me a heads-up that the song’s about date rape.

Just listen closely to the lyrics, she said.

So I did…

I really can’t stay
Baby it’s cold outside
I’ve got to go away
Baby it’s cold out there
This evening has been
Been hoping that you’d drop in
So very nice
I’ll hold your hands, they’re just like ice
My mother will start to worry
Beautiful, what’s your hurry?
My father will be pacing the floor
Listen to that fireplace roar
So really I’d better scurry
Beautiful, please don’t hurry
Well maybe just a half a drink more
Why don’t you put some records on while I pour
The neighbors might think
Baby, it’s bad out there
Say, what’s in this drink?
No cabs to be had out there
There’s bound to be talk tomorrow
Think of my life long sorrow
At least there will be plenty implied
If you caught pneumonia and died
I really can’t stay
Get over that old lie
Baby, baby it’s cold outside

OK, OK, I agreed. If “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” ain’t a date rape tune, it’s at least creepy as all get out.

But that still won’t keep me from singing it in the shower. Not after 50 or so years of having it drilled into my brain by old Christmas albums, TV shows, radio, and shopping trips through Nordstrom.

Some thngs just stick with you forever, whether old holiday songs or even good business habits.

Speaking of which, I’ve collected a whole bunch’a effective business habits into a brief report that you can download and read in about a half-hour. It’ll give you a jump on your money-making efforts in the coming new year.

Get it here…

Split-Second Solopreneur

The best friggin’ Xmas movies ever

casino-catastrophes-bruce-willis-ventilation-shaftYeah, I know…

We just blew through Thanksgiving, and already, we’re freakin’ sick of all the Christmas claptrap.

But to survive in MY household — and in order to keep my marriage afloat — I’ve just gotta get into the “spirit.”

So holiday music is floating through my house as I write this.

A Christmas tree will be purchased this afternoon.

And very shortly, we’ll begin squeezing in all our favorite holiday movies before Santa’s here and we start moving into 2017.

Our list is traditional — but spiced with the eccentric.

Here you go…

White Christmas — C’mon, who can resist Bing and Danny? And how delicious were Vera-Ellen’s legs?

How the Grinch Stole Christmas — The 1966 cartoon. Accept no substitutes.

Elf — Am I the only one who gets weepy during those final scenes with James Caan?

Die Hard — The worst company Xmas party EVER.

A Christmas Story — Impossible to avoid.

Love Actually — Besides its obvious charms, it features Bill Nighy’s not-to-be-missed Christmas variation on the Troggs’ “Love Is All Around.”

And of course we’ve gotta include at least one adaptation of A Christmas Carol.

I say “Humbug!” to Bill Murray, Jim Carrey, and most of the modern portrayers of Ebenezer Scrooge.

I really like Alastair Sims’ 1951 performance.

But for my money, the best Scrooge of all time is Quincy Magoo, star of Mister Magoo’s Christmas Carol. It was the very first animated TV holiday special, first broadcast in 1962.

Maybe I love it because Magoo is the first Scrooge I remember from childhood.

More likely, it’s because I’ve watched Mister Magoo’s Christmas Carol every Christmas season since I was in the third grade.

None of that really matters, though. I just love Mr. Magoo, voiced by the late Jim Backus. Plus, the songs from that little TV show are still fantastic after 54 years. (Didja know that the same songwriters wrote Funny Girl years later?)

And who the hell can resist the great Gerald McBoing-Boing’s performance as Tiny Tim? (A very rare speaking role for him, incidentally.)

No business or marketing message today.

Just start watching holiday movies these weeks before Christmas. If you’re feeling down, they’ll give you a lift. If you’re already in the spirit, they’ll lift you even higher. Trust me.

Jingle, jingle.

RIP a horrible hornblower

tradition-viking-man-blowing-a-horn-by-edwin-hHeard about the air horn terrorist?

For a few weeks, the sumbitch screwed with the circadian rhythms of folks in El Segundo, California, by blasting an air horn at ungodly hours.

“The sound was like a train coming through the neighborhood,” said an El Segundo cop.

Well, after chasing this guy night after night, he was finally brought to heel last weekend and booked on a misdemeanor charge of suspicion of disturbing the peace. They also impounded his car, with air horn inside.

So why’d this guy expend so much energy terrorizing his neighbors?

Well, cops say they believe he had an ax to grind with someone who “done him wrong.”

Anyhow, justice has been served, and El Segundo residents can again sleep soundly in their beds.

Which brings to mind, just how soundly are YOU sleeping?

Do you sleep peacefully, or are you kept awake from stressing about the economy and the security of your job?

If you ARE having trouble sleeping for that reason, you’ll probably want to read through my latest report, which explains the how’s of building and keeping control of your income.

Go on. Download it here…

Split-Second Solopreneur

Sack up and go with the scary

haunted-highwayA lotta dainty flowers are sobbing and whining and wringing their hands about the election this week of Donald Trump.

“I’m scared!”

The sumbitch is still two months from the White House and they’re terrified of what MIGHT happen. Maybe.

“Trump might do something…BAD!”

More likely, he’ll do something stoopid that’ll keep the country locked into litigation of one sort or another for the next four years.

Anyway, all this reminds me of a bit of wisdom I once stumbled on in a hardboiled crime novel.

In the middle of throat-slashings, pistol-whippings, and butt-kickings, outta nowhere, a deputy tells a young babe…

“It’ll never feel right. It’ll always feel scary, so you’ve got to go with scary.”

That walloped me so hard my teeth rattled.

OK, maybe the idea of President Trump doesn’t feel right to you. I understand that. (The idea of President Clinton II didn’t feel right to me, either.)

But you can’t successfully live your life if you panic whenever something doesn’t feel right.

It didn’t “feel right” when I jumped into my first assignment as a corporate hack way back when.

And after the Big Corporate Debacle, it didn’t “feel right” when I tore up my job resume to fly solo.

It didn’t “feel right” when I spoke from a stage to a roomful of strangers for the first time.

And it sure didn’t “feel right” when I created and launched my first ever digital online information product.

Hell, no.

Those things felt scary.

Real scary.

Life’s ALWAYS friggin’ scary, fer krissakes.

If you sit around waiting for the “right feeling” before you change things up for yourself, nothing’s ever gonna happen.

You might as well pull the blankie over your head right now.

I know it, and you know it.

Anything worth doing is going to be scary.

Embrace it.

Sack up and go with the scary.

http://tinyurl.com/zft964q

When killer turkeys attack!

thankskillingGet a load of this recent 911 call made to police in Davis, California…

“Yes, this is almost embarrassing. I am trying to get into my office on G Street in Davis, and I have this huge turkey surrounding my car, circling me, and I don’t know what to do. I don’t want to run it over, but I can’t stay in my car all morning. Is there any advice you can give me?”

One more…

“Um yeah, so, there’s a turkey between 4th and on 5th and F that’s running around chasing after people. And this was like, it was attacking, pretty much attacking a guy.”

So here’s the deal.

A turkey that spends most of its time hanging out in a Wells Fargo parking lot in downtown Davis is terrorizing citizens.

[shudder]

Downtown Tom, as the gobbler is called, has been lunging at people, circling them, and even chasing them.

Frustrated wildlife officials have tried unsuccessfully to capture the feathered felon. At last report, a half-mile chase temporarily pushed Downtown Tom out of his usual territory, but he’s expected to return.

In the meantime, the city’s posted signs that offer tips on how to handle the terrible turkey.

City officials recommend not running away but clapping your hands, shouting at him, and using whatever you’re carrying to block him if he approaches you aggressively.

“Be the dominant species,” says a city wildlife resource specialist. “Don’t let it intimidate you.”

Funny what intimidates us.

I used to be intimidated by speaking in front of groups.

Not anymore.

I also used to be intimidated by the idea of jumping solo into my own business.

I mastered that, too, after I figgered out a few odds and ends that many solopreneurs won’t tell you about.

I spill the beans about all that bid’niz stuff in a report that you’ll certainly find helpful, if you’re thinking about quitting the ol’ J-O-B and doing your own thing.

Download a copy here…

Split-Second Solopreneur

Rotting in Buenos Aires

metropolis1Have I told you before that a 90-year-old silent movie is one of my Top 10 favorite films of all time?

Sure, I have.

Metropolis is German director Fritz Lang’s 1927 dystopian sci-fi epic. It was the most expensive silent movie ever made, and its special effects and set designs have inspired film-makers and artists for almost a century.

Blade Runner owes much to Metropolis. So does Star Wars’ C3PO. A London musical was based on the movie. And singer-songwriter-diva Janelle Monáe created a Metropolis suite.

But Metropolis has long been a damaged giant.

When it premiered in Berlin in 1927, it was 153 minutes long. By the time I first saw it in college, there were just 90 minutes left.

Over the years, it had been sliced and diced by studios and distributors, its rhythm and pace ruined and its plot obscured. The excised footage was “lost.”

For three decades, efforts were made to restore the movie, and it was released and re-released in various versions, incorporating whatever missing footage could be found at the time. By 2001, Metropolis ran 124 minutes long.

Everybody thought Lang’s tour de force had been rebuilt as completely as it would ever be.

But in 2008, a 16 mm reduction negative of the original premiere cut of the film, including almost all the lost scenes, was discovered in a film museum in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

And now Metropolis has been, well, declared as close to “complete” as it ever will be. Its running time stands at 145 minutes, just eight shy of its original magnificence.

Fact is, though, that there’s still restoration work to be done on Metropolis. The “newest” footage from Argentina is watchable but scratchy and in need of further digital cleaning and repair. And there are those missing eight minutes still to be found.

Yeah, the restored Metropolis is still a work-in-progress.

Just like most of us.

We can only be great — and stay great — with ongoing effort. Same with our businesses.

That’s not something most of us wanna hear.

But so it goes.

Read the books.

Listen to the audios.

Attend the workshops.

Don’t sit still, moldering on your sofa (or, like Metropolis, decaying in a Buenos Aires film archive).

Do whatever you gotta do to be your best.

Make it an adventure!

To help get started, you might want to check things out right here.

How to be a villain and influence people

jokerpicMore than 40 years ago, Robert Ringer wrote a couple’a books with titles that kept many mushcookies from opening them and sucking up their valuable advice.

Those books were Winning Through Intimidation and Looking Out for #1. I still re-read them and consider them classics, among the most insightful self-help books ever.

Well, not to be outdone in the offensiveness game, Ben Settle, my favorite unruly marketer, has recently released a short, helpful, motivational volume with a title sure to outrage bleeding hearts aplenty — Persuasion Secrets of the World’s Most Charismatic & Influential Villains.

This little bugger is so freakin’ good that I’ve read it three times since Ben sent me a copy earlier this month.

Get a load of a few of the chapter headings…

“Ruthlessly Knock People off Their Pedestals”

“Execute Your Inner Nice Guy with Extreme Prejudice”

“Secure Your ‘Screw You’ Fund”

My favorite chapter is called “Be the Joker.”

Ben explains that Batman’s archest of arch bad guys has an attribute that, if applied to our everyday lives, will fill our pockets with dough, our beds with beautiful partners, and send our competitors scrambling for the hills.

What’s that attribute?

It’s IMPACT.

Just think about it.

In the world of villainy, nobody beats the Joker in the impact department.

You didn’t even see the guy in the trailers for last summer’s “Suicide Squad,” but when movie audiences heard his echoing laugh, they went batshit crazy.

That’s impact, friend.

Do you have it? Personally? In your business?

You might wanna download my latest report, whether you think you have impact or not. Grab the report here…

Split-Second Solopreneur

Royally pissed in a Tuscan castle

castello-di-amorosa1Deb and I are in Napa Valley this week, partaking of pinots, cabs, chardonnays, zins, you name it.

Which reminds me of an adventure we had a few years ago at maybe the coolest winery in the area.

Castello di Amorosa is socked away against a hillside just south of the geysers in Calistoga.

The place is a full-scale medieval Tuscan castle, with a drawbridge, dry moat, great hall, courtyard, church, iron-gated entrance, towers, and even a torture chamber. Out of place here but totally bitchin’.

Their wine is great.

But on this particular visit I’m referring to, they almost blew it.

There were six of us in our party, and our friend Carrie had an iPhone app that promised a two-for-one deal for admission and wine tasting.

But the two women at the entrance didn’t want to honor it.

They fussed. They fumed. Only after much argument did they finally allow two of us to enter at a discount.

Four of us were royally pissed.

Not a good thing when your business sells wine at prices ranging anywhere from 28 to 100-plus dollars a bottle.

So none of us were predisposed to make any wine purchases that morning.

Good thing for the owners of Castello di Amorosa, the guy pouring in the tasting room was friendly, generous, and informative.

We joked with him. He shared stories. We really liked him.

And he sold us some $300 worth of vino.

Meanwhile, the two guard dogs at the gate had risked that sale for a few bucks in admission fees. Not to mention the gamble they’d made that we might tell all our Facebook friends about our shitty experience.

By the way…

We spoke with one of the castle’s bigshots. We suggested the guy in the tasting room get a raise and that the gals at the admissions counter get their asses canned pronto.

As a thank-you, he refunded us all our entry fees.

Business is built on relationships, not on pissing off your potential customers.

It doesn’t matter if you own a large Napa Valley winery or you’re a solopreneur — relationships always matter.

So don’t screw ’em up.

I’ve pulled together a report on how to avoid screwing up not just your customer/client relationships but ANY challenge you might face during the first year or so of building your business.

You’ll want to take a look at this…

http://tinyurl.com/zft964q

Lick your kitty without risking hairballs

cat-brushAnother WTF moment!

In the course of skimming the news yesterday, I came across this…

“HAVE YOU EVER WANTED TO LICK YOUR CAT?

“Now you can. Without the furballs.

“Cats groom each other as a form of social bonding. There’s also evidence to suggest that cats view and treat their human captors as large cats. As a human, you’re left out of the intimate licking ritual. At best, you have a one-sided licking relationship with your cat.

“We have designed LICKI brush to bring you and your cat closer. By using LICKI with your cat on a regular basis, you’ll develop a more intimate and bonded relationship, much like a mama cat bonds with her young.”

One end of the brush fits inside your mouth. The other end is shaped like a giant tongue.

I’m thinking this has gotta be a joke, but on the other hand, these folks launched a Kickstarter campaign for their product and have a website filled with videos.

Google it…if you dare. (Me, I found the videos uncomfortable to watch.)

All this goes to show that there are zillions of ways to make money. And sometimes, in the case of this cat brush, the ideas obviously best flow when prompted by massive amounts of hallucinogens.

I’ve always taken an easy route to making moola. And I even crammed my strategy for that into a brief, step-by-step report that you can read in just 20 minutes.

If you’re looking for a simpler way to build a business than designing and marketing a cat-licking product, grab my report here…

Split-Second Solopreneur

Kid sidekicks are a pain in the ass

sheffieldI was watching 1947’s Tarzan and the Huntress late last night and remembered that this week marks six years since Johnny Sheffield died.

Johnny was one of the iconic “kid sidekicks.” He played “Boy” to Johnny Weissmuller’s Tarzan in the 1930s and ’40s, and Huntress was his last performance as the character. (In fact, Weissmuller had just one film to go before he hung up his own loincloth.)

Sheffield the jungle boy would’a been 85 this year.

Way back when I was a munchkin, watching the old Weissmuller movies on Channel 9 in L.A., I thought Boy was a pain in the ass.

Tarzan would say, “Boy stay with Cheetah.” But no sooner would the Ape Man leap into the trees than Boy would chase after a baby elephant and end up captured by headhunters, or ivory poachers, or warriors from Opar.

Of course, Cheetah’d fetch Tarz, who’d stop whatever he was doing (usually skinny-dipping with Jane) to rescue the little creep.

Like I said — a pain in the ass.

But there was one good thing you could always say about Boy.

When he needed help — like when cannibals were cooking him in a boiling pot of water — he knew where to find it. And he wasn’t afraid to ask for it.

It’s a shame most of us aren’t more like Boy in that way.

I don’t know about you, but when I run into a problem, I usually avoid asking for help and end up wasting a lot of time that could be better spent elsewhere.

Sure, fumbling and bumbling can be a “learning experience.” But problems get solved faster and more efficiently when you know where to look for the answers.

Well, if you dream of jumping off the job treadmill — or fear that you’ll soon be booted off against your will — I’ve got SOME of the answers.

And I’ve pulled them together into a quick-to-read, no-BS report that you can grab right here…

Split-Second Solopreneur