Starbucks vs. Dunkin’ Donuts

26 02 2008

Coffee chains batter-ing it out? Has this fight been brewing for a while? It was announced that coffee chain Starbucks is closing its stores nationwide today from 5:30-8:30pm for espresso training. And rival Dunkin’ Donuts is foaming at the mouth just to get an additional shot of Starbucks’ regulars. Today, from 1pm to 10pm, Dunkin’ Donuts is offering a small latte for $.99. When opportunity came a’knockin’, Dunkin’ Donuts opened the door and said, “Have some coffee!” This is one of the best examples I have ever seen of taking advantage of environmental opportunities when they arise. I may live in the online marketing world most of the time (guess I’m just wired that way), but I always appreciate seeing examples of the marketing techniques I was taught in school. This caffeine-charged campaign may sprinkle Dunkin’ Donuts with a new crop of coffee drinkers. And a robusta market share is just what the barista ordered for this breakfast bakery. In the past year or so, the company has already changed its image by adding a new face, Rachael Ray, as spokesperson, and also by expanding its menu. Look out, Starbucks. Dunkin’ Donuts isn’t just playing for beans anymore!


Bravo and Thank You!

25 02 2008

Thanks and bravo to everyone who’s been reading! Today we had a record number of hits!! Thanks you guys!! I really appreciate all of you who are reading, and even more, those of you who are commenting! Comments are my favorite. (“I like smiling, smiling’s my favorite!”) So, you know what would make me more happy? Subscribe to my blog, bookmark it, and list it on your facebook/MySpace (other various social network pages) under your favorite websites. 🙂
Thanks again, you guys are the best!!
wwLove to you all!

Ensley on Ellen

25 02 2008

It doesn’t matter how many times I hear this. It gives me goosebumps everytime.

The streets of Heaven update

25 02 2008

*for anyone stumbling across this because of the Academy Awards in search of where the quote comes from, I’ll tell you. I first heard it in a speech given by Martin Sheen as President Bartlet in the television show The West Wing. Before that, it had been used by Tom Hanks in his acceptance speech for Best Actor for his role in Philadelphia in 1994. I can’t find anything before this, so the only assumption I can come to is that the quote comes from his speech. A little anti-climactic, if you ask me, for a quote that eloquent to come from an Oscar speech, but there it is. I used it in reference to the deaths that occured in the tragic massacres at both Virginia Tech and NIU, but if it needs to be reduced to an Oscar speech, there it is.

Not again…

25 02 2008

Well, what else can I say. Ralph Nader announced on Sunday (2/26) that he will run for President as a third-party candidate. I don’t know what he is thinking. He has run for President, what, 47,000 times already (4 times, ’92, ’96, ’00, ’04, and ’08 will be *lucky* number 5)? He announced on “Meet the Press” that part of his decision was driven by attempts to keep him out of the race in 2004. “They were mean to me last time. I’ll show them.” I don’t think that people should be denied the opportunity to run for President if they have a legitimate reason to run for the office. And I suppose that Mr. Nader did some excellent consumer advocacy work back in the 60s with automobile companies, but does that give him the credence to run for President? No, not to run, to be elected. Let him run, if he wants to. Let whomever run that wants to. But he isn’t going to be put on the ballot in some states. And he’s going to get even fewer votes than he did last time. Why? Because 1) the people who would generally vote for him already have a candidate that they can get behind. The young voters that would vote for him are behind Barack Obama, and 2) He’s become a stodgy old guy, and this gen’s Ross Perot. The guy that people look at and think, why? Ok, you have something to say, but you’ve said it 100 times, and now it is just starting to look sad. We appreciate what you are trying to do, but step aside and let some of these other (younger) people work on it. These are your issues, but they are ours too. We’ll help you get it done if you will get out of the way and let us talk to the people that are in more of a position to do something about it. Honestly, Mr. Nader, if you cared about these issues, you would spend your time, money, and efforts into solving, or fighting to solve the problem, rather than campaigning for a position that you are never going to win, and possibly hurting the people that would help you the most were they elected. Read more at NY Times.


25 02 2008

I took a little break from blogging this weekend, but I am back and in full force. I want to talk right now about education. And as a person who spent her life in public schools, I believe I have every right to lodge a few complaints. I spent some time last night working with my younger sister on a paper she has been asked to write for an advanced placement class. I will not pretend that I am a fantastic writer. But I did manage to survive high school, college, and am now well on my way to earning a masters degree. I think I can safely say that I know a little. And every piece of knowledge that I possess about writing well and the writing process was useless while trying to help my sister. What ever it is that he has taught her, it is incorrect. I’m not saying that this is a different opinion, or a different writing style, but instead that it is just plain wrong. It is as if he is saying that 2+2=7. And apparently he will be the first to admit it. He (my sister’s 10th grade history teacher) claims that his wife, who teaches 11th grade english, has to re-teach them the proper way to write. I do not blame her teacher. After all, he is teaching specifically to a test that students across the country take, the Advanced Placement test. My complaint is with the makers of this test. Document-based questions. Essays that are written based on an idea formed by looking at a series of documents. It is a good idea in theory, for research papers and the like. But I have never, ever written a paper in the format that is taught and considered acceptable for the AP test. Isn’t the point of the advanced placement test to award college credit for college-style work? This is not college-style work. Short, simple sentences without variety in structure or thought. I repeat, this is not college-level work. What it is, is a repression of individuality. There are only so many ways that a document can be interpreted in one short sentence. English and history were always my favorite subjects in school. I have a thing for words, and in my opinion, the bigger, the better. I’ve since been taught that while big words work in some instances, in others, they are useless. These papers that they are being taught to write in order to pass their AP tests and earn college credit are devoid of imagery, descriptors, metaphors, similes, and hyperboles, the marks of good writing. WHY?? Why are students taught to hide their intelligence and creativity in order to pass an advanced placement test? I am not a teacher, but I am a student. I understand the K-I-S-S principle. Keep it simple, stupid. The oxy-moronic version of our education teaches us first to advance our vocabulary and continually challenges us to learn words that never appear in ordinary conversation, and then when we finally come across the opportunity to use the word loquacious (talkative) or acalculia (an inability to perform arithmatic functions), we’re told to keep it simple.
Yeah. Keep it simple. It is stupid.

You can’t fish while on horseback, but you can carry a gun to class?

21 02 2008

One of the strange laws of the state of Utah is that it is against the law to fish from horseback. Even stranger? You can carry a concealed gun on any college campus (public colleges). Sure can. College kids can get up, strap on the .22, pull on jeans and go to class. Until late 2006, University of Utah had a ban that prohibited firearms from campus, but it was struck down by the state legislature. The school, along with the other public universities in the state is fighting with the legislature to reinstate the ban. In light of the massacre at Virginia Tech and the more recent one at Northern Illinois University, some college students claim they feel that they can better protect themselves by carrying a concealed weapon. I suppose if there had been someone with a gun when Seung-Hui Cho (Virginia Tech) started shooting, that might have ended sooner and spared some lives. But we have no way of knowing that. Private schools in Utah such as Brigham Young University in Provo have the power to ban firearms.
I went to a state university (THE STATE’S UNIVERSITY), although I was out of school before the Virginia Tech shooting happened, but I am not sure I would feel comfortable knowing that some of my fellow students had concealed weapons on them. If I was on a college campus with a firearms ban and I saw the outline of a gun that was being concealed under someone’s shirt, or in someone’s pants, then I would know there was a problem. If there was no such ban, how would anyone know? Granted, concealed weapons are just that, concealed. Does it increase accidental gun deaths? I mean, think about how many college kids are getting drunk every night? And then they have easier access to a gun because they are either carrying one, or one of their drunk friends is carrying one? That’s a frightening thought. Maybe they aren’t as worried in Utah, as they have some pretty interesting liquor laws. To read more on this subject, read this article posted on CNNU.