Payment processing: Testing Square’s link tool with a Monocle

Posted By on May 31, 2020

Having used Paypal‘s simple sales link solution to sell a product or raise money for an organization in the past (EAA284 and CinciTDI) .. I’m always looking for a better way (cheaper way) to handle transactions. Back in the early days of having a retail presence with my printing company, we were handcuffed to credit card processors and their terminal leases, monthly fees, per transaction AND PERCENT OF SALE fees. It was always a struggle to stay on top of this. At the time, American Express always dinged the merchant the most, yet some of my best regular customers would pay for their sales literature with their “business issued” Amex card –– bigger sale, bigger percentage ding for me.

Once Consolidated Printing and Publishing Co. gave up the walk-in business, there wasn’t a need for the terminal … and about that time it was getting easier to use mobile phones and devices to begin handling transaction. Ebay‘s Paypal (before spinning off) became the easiest way to handle a delivery and on-site sale. I used it a “little bit” in business, but a lot for organizations. Eventually Square came around and became my go to point-of-sale “terminal” tool –  the swipe dongle works well with the iPad (or iPhone).

  Hogan’s Heroes March – Jerry Fielding (mp3)

Paypal continued to offer their service too, but at that time the percentage take was a little higher and the convenience of using Square for business and Paypal for organizations kept things clean and simple.  I’m not sure what it is as of this writing which is the better deal.

Square has recently been marketing their simple web-link tool for sales and donations, so before using it for real, I’ll test it here by offering a knock-off monocle to one random lucky person who donate something to my test (yes, the Col KlinkCol Klink looking “thing” from Hogan’s Heroes) . So if you are feeling lucky and can spare a buck to test this linkand always wanted a monocle … here’s your chance (link above vs embed test code below). 

Donate to MDB knowing only one random person will win the coveted Monocle



Face masks, eating out again and PPE in the age of COVID19

Posted By on May 30, 2020

RichCEatingAtFazolis200524It has been a couple weeks of more states and localities re-opening. Brenda and I stopped at Fazoli’s to pick up something last weekend, but instead decided to try something new .. at least since restaurants shut down. FazolisLogo.We donned our face masks and ordered our meal sitting every other table. All was good. Then again this past Friday my buddy Jeff and I resumed our once a month (or sometimes more) eating out and staying in touch at one of our favorite local Mexican restaurants. We were surprised to see the shared basket of chips and salsa, but again the spacing was spread out. They took our name in advance, but didn’t seem to bother when we walked in. All in all, it was starting to feel a little more normal. Nice!

ResistOrMoronSpeaking of masks, Brenda wears them everyday in the Kroger Pharmacy and recently they were offered a pretty ‘wimpy” replacement for the normal paper/disposable masks (not the N95). She tried the new “cloth” mask on, but prefers the paper which took a few weeks to get comfortable wearing – I think she is ok with it now. I’m still struggling with the “masking up,” and agreed the new wimpy cloth is easier to breathe through, but I’m not sure offers much in the way of filtration or protection? Of course it is all likely a false sense of protection anyway – but probably a little be better than this crochet one (photo left).

Tech Friday: i-Device Wallpapers .. the Bompa edition

Posted By on May 29, 2020

Although my computer monitor(s) still have relatively generic “paper airplanewallpapers, I regularly update both my iPhone and iPad. Annalyn_iPhoneWallpaper200521Long gone are the days of sailboat pictures and Palm Pre wallpapers … and here to stay are the grandchildren wallpapers for the foreseeable future (who knows, I may have to get MacBook Air like Taylor just did if a 3rd grandchild comes along?)


And … now is as good a time as any to post a photo from Memorial Day 2020.


If the end of bread is not called the heel, then what do you call it?

Posted By on May 28, 2020

What do you call the two pieces of bread that bookend all of the slices?

Every once in a while, a quirky story gets me thinking and talking to those around me. I once though everyone called the ends of a loaf of bread the “heels.” LoafOfBreadUnbeknownst to me, even my wife had a different term .. “the ends.”

An informal online survey back in 2018 collected responses from people around the world and they relayed their terms, most I expected they inherited from their families. The result was that most called it the “heel” (36.7%, including Norwegians using the term “skalk” – translated to heel). That term was followed by 27.6% who called it the “end” (or the end piece or the end slice”). If as before we look to  Scandinavian countries, they might call it the “endeskiver” (translated to end washer or end disk). 

The third most popular is the “butt” or the loaf which makes up 20% of those who responded. And since with still have a few responses unaccounted for … even a small percentage call it “the crust” like almost everyone from Wales. Don’t they know “crust” is just the outside of the entire loaf?

Still there were a few more names:

Czechoslovakians call it "patka" .. which translates to "flap" or "strap" in English and the Scottish had quite a few name: the "doorstep," the "outsider," or the "knobby."

And since more people agreed that the worst part of the loaf is the heel, end or butt, it might be understandable why a few try reverse psychology. “Oh, the ends are the best part of the loaf … they “the tasty boys.”  Huh?

A list of some anti-end-of-slice terms included "trash," "garbage," "the ugly slice," "the nasty slice," "Satanspawn," and "Piece Of S— That No One Likes."

A few called it "the dog’s bread" or "duck bread" because they felt it was not fit for human consumption and thus fed it to animals. 


Do not fall for text messaging scams targeting senior citizens

Posted By on May 27, 2020

Acknowledge scammers and you become a “live mark.”

TMediScamMay2020here’s no way around it, living with smarphones and computers makes life easier and more difficult at the same time. Scammers are busy targeting all of us and seem particularly interested in taking advantage of senior citizens and those often least experience with technology.


A perfect example is a text message that has been going around for at least a year. This one always seems to be “Alex’  … but is modified for your state, etc. I’m unsure if they send to random numbers or try to only target those of a certain age (hey, I’m still a few years away) but likely have only the goal of finding a “live mark” for their unscrupulous plans. The best advice is to delete, block and ignore. There was a time I reported this to the FTC and their National Do Not Call Registry … but it seemed to me to be a waste of time. Until there aren’t any marks –There’s a sucker born every minute” – or are teeth and serious repercussions to deter the practices, this will continue.

As I’ve said before, a strong deterrent decreases criminal and bad behavior … even if it doesn’t eliminate. Having no deterrent is just putting out the welcome mat . This applies across the board be it felonies or misdemeanors, cybercrime or illegals coming into our country, petty theft or speeding – most people calculate the risk vs reward and act accordingly. 


Later and more work than usual in opening the pool this year

Posted By on May 26, 2020


It is never as easy as expected? I’m accustom to opening the pool each season now that I’ve been doing it for 20+ years in Cincinnati and another 5 or so in Hudson before that. Each season it should get easier, right? Nope. PoolRebuildingPump200524There always something … and the job is MUCH more challenging to do by myself as my age inches ever higher (Brenda says it is all in my mind … then asks if my life insurance policy is paid up – kidding, she’s only thinking that!)


Anyway this year again … the spring rain added some silt and extra worms to the pool. On top of that, the pool pump that was making noise last year, corroded enough to freeze up (corrosion above – new motor above left). Thankfully, I have learned a few things over the years and knew those motor bearing would eventually need to be rebuilt again, so I planned ahead and purchase a new pump motor last year. Smart.

Still the removal and rebuilding of the pump motor cut into my already long day of opening the pool. Thankfully by the end of the long day, the pump is now running smoothly, the first layer of silt sucked out and cover is folded (I’ll wait for Taylor to help move it up on the storage shelf – although I’m not sure why I put it up high???)

Also reworked the electrical and added some clean wire and crimped terminals.

Thinking about the ultimate sacrifice on Memorial Day

Posted By on May 25, 2020

MemorialDay2020We should probably come up with a better way to remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country than a day off work, grilling out and giving momentary lip service?

As I sat on the front porch on Sunday (something I don’t often do), I looked at the half staff flag and did think a little more deeply than usual.

Unfortunately like too many, I rarely take Memorial Day as solemnly as I should. When we really think about it, our liberty came and continues to come at a very high cost. Someone fought and too many died so that we could enjoy freedom and security in America.  I’m sure I’m not along in all too often taking that for granted?

It boggled the mind just how many times men have had to fight to preserve our way of life, yet never came home to see what they have preserved.

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.
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