Walmart Brings Sharing to a New Level

By Larry Teren

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If Walmart has their way, it won’t be long before you see the elderly greeter at your favorite Walmart store replaced by a computer scanning device. What- the elderly greeter has been laid off? Yeah, I know- health insurance costs too much. Don’t worry, the old geezer is eligible for Medicare. Anyway, you take out of your wallet or purse your new Walmart customer identification card and slide it through the scanner. A message displays on a viewing screen thanking you for acknowledging your visit to the store. The computer knows who you are and your address. This becomes important as you will see. Continue reading “Walmart Brings Sharing to a New Level”

The Suicide Club

By Larry Teren

hershel_bernardiBaby boomers recall the popular television commercial from the 1960’s of Charlie the Tuna in cartoon form trying to convince fishermen that amphibians with good taste also taste good. If you aren’t aware, Charlie’s voice is dubbed by Hershel Bernardi. Bernardi’s other claim to trivia fame is a short-lived television series (48 episodes) called Arnie, in which he plays a typically put-upon husband at home who gets promoted from his blue collar to white collar job at work.

Hershel came from a theatrical family- in the Yiddish theater, that is. In 1971, his brother Jack authored a book about the life of their father Berel, a famous comic actor in the Yiddish circuit from the turn of the century until his death in 1932. Jack recounts a macabre incident when Berel took on a job for a short run in Toronto, Canada. Continue reading “The Suicide Club”

The Natural’s Natural

By Larry Teren

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The obituary section of the newspaper caught my attention the other day with the news wires mentioning the death of Ruth Ann Steinhagen at age 83 eight weeks earlier. Ruth who, you say? It’s ironic that most people were not aware that almost thirty years earlier Hollywood made a movie of something horrific she did. Maybe it’s because the movie was adapted from a book of fiction. But we all know that out of truth comes even better fiction. Continue reading “The Natural’s Natural”

Remotely Working Remotely

By Larry Teren

There has been plenty discussed lately about the work rules established by Marissa Meyer, the CEO of Yahoo. She laid down the law that employees can no longer work from home via remote connection to the office. They have to show up in person at the office 40 hours a week or go find another place to work.

This brings to mind an incident that occurred in 1981 when I was working at a computer consulting company in Chicago’s north suburban area. Yes, Clive- they did have computer consultants back then. It was not something conjured up in this century.
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Steal This Story or How to Be Petty

By Larry Teren

abbie_hoffmanBaby boomers remember that in 1970 Abbie Hoffman wrote a book entitled “Steal This Book”. Despite his tongue-in-each dare to readers, the book sold very well. Abbie was a self-styled subversive who gave advice on how to “cheat the man” (my words, not his- but you get the idea). Human nature is such that we try to be honest as well as sometimes stretch the truth and reality when it seems the only way to survive. And then some of us are real stinkers. The following few examples are a matter of whom you want to believe:
Continue reading “Steal This Story or How to Be Petty”

Long Before Search Engines

Long Before Search Engines

By Larry Teren

The old-timer was sitting in the den with his twelve year old grandson. There was nothing good on television, so the kid was playing with his iphone. The old man tried to jump start a conversation.barney_google

Old Man: Whatcha doin?
Kid: Nothing much. Just playing around.

Old Man: (Chuckling to himself) Heh, heh. When I was a kid in the 1950’s and 60’s, Yahoo and Google meant something totally different to my fellow baby boomers.
Kid: Yeah?
Continue reading “Long Before Search Engines”