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BREAKING IN A NEW DOCTOR

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 22, 2021

BRYCE ON LIFE

– It is more difficult these days.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Recently I had to choose a new primary care physician. I’m at the age now where the doctors I have used in the past are either retiring or passing away. Over time, we develop a bond with our doctors, particularly our primary care physicians, but this seems to be getting more difficult these days.

Through the years, my old physicians and I got to know each other well. We spoke on a first name basis, knew about our families, and enjoyed pleasantries. For example, it wasn’t unusual for me to share a joke or to discuss politics (as they knew of my writing background). I would also offer advice on systems and technology subjects from time to time, and listen to them patiently gripe about the flaws in their systems, particularly the bureaucracy as mandated by the government. The point is, we knew each other. I recently met an old doctor friend who gave me an eye test; we ended up talking about her days as a Girl Scout leader, and mine as a baseball/softball coach. We were both proud of our kids in these groups, particularly now they are grown up and doing well.

If you had a medical problem or question, you would pick up the phone and talk with your doctor, not his/her assistant or nurse. Not so anymore. Now you have to use their Internet portals to pose a question, which usually goes unanswered unless a canned answer will suffice. Nor do I want an “app” to do the same. Sorry, but No. These technical devices are killing personal medicine. I would much rather have a physician who knows enough about me to make an accurate diagnosis, not a machine.

There is no doubt, today’s young doctors know a lot about medicine, but unfortunately less about their patients, making them seem more jaded and insensitive, and less trustworthy. Maybe younger patients today can accept these technology driven doctors, but the older patients want more personalized attention.

It’s actually quite simple, “it takes two to Tango.” Both the doctor and the patient have to try and understand each other; one to listen and diagnose symptoms, and the other to be able to articulate their symptoms in a way the doctor can understand. Knowing each other makes the visit easy on each other, and produces a mutually satisfactory solution, what is known as a “Win-Win” situation. Having a good rapport between both parties builds confidence and trust, which is perhaps the hardest thing to achieve in a doctor/patient relationship.

Another item that is a bit unnerving with new doctors, is the reams of paperwork required before the physician will even talk to you. First, the staff starts with a strip search of all of your cards for ID, insurance, and credit. After making multiple copies, you’re still not sure who is using them as they ask to see them on every visit. As to the forms, I actually don’t mind the clipboard and paperwork but I take exception to the new computer tablets they use to “expedite” the process. In reality, this is a joke as it is written by idiot programmers who have no concept of “user friendly.” In fact, “user nasty” is perhaps a more apt description. Not only are the forms harder to follow, they make it next to impossible to correct a mistake. Unfortunately, this is typical for today, be it in the doctor’s office or elsewhere.

Then there is the matter of the endless number of e-mails and text messages from the doctor’s office reminding me of my appointment. Talk about nagging! In the old days, you made an appointment and you updated your calendar. What’s the big deal? Okay, they might send you a post card a week before your appointment to remind you. I can accept this, but I cannot accept the dozens of obnoxious electronic reminders. I’m to the point now I simply don’t pay attention to them and block as many as I can.

As as aside, in a recent text message on my phone, the doctor’s office asked me to respond if I was coming to the appointment, Y (Yes) or N (No). I drove the program crazy by entering the Greek Pi symbol (π) instead. Two can play this game.

I have also found I am visiting more and more doctors these days, not because I have any serious medical conditions, but to do nothing more than to take tests, e.g.; blood, hearing, heart, dermatology, urology, vision, etc. Frankly, it sounds like a scam whereby the primary care physician prescribes tests with other doctors and perhaps gets a kickback in return. It is also somewhat embarrassing when your social calendar is filled with nothing but medical tests.

My doctor will probably say I am being paranoid. I guess this means I’ll have to suffer through even more tests to check my mental acuity. See, it never stops! God how I hate the 21st century.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS…

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 17, 2021

BRYCE ON LIFE

– …that makes life worth living.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Most of us are familiar with the expression, “He who dies with the most toys wins,” meaning people crave recognition for owning the biggest house, the fastest car, a huge yacht, the most expensive watch, or an impressive title. Although such people should be congratulated on their success, to me, this is rather shallow thinking as I believe it is the little things that make life worthwhile. For example:

I really enjoy seeing a job well done, producing a quality product on time and within budget. This is a testament to the people who produced it and the manager in charge. Better yet, performing a job admired by others. Unfortunately, we no longer seem to be able to conquer too many large projects any more, which is why when such projects are completed properly, we should celebrate. This also explains why we are content doing smaller projects these days.

Back in 1985, when we moved our office from Cincinnati to Tampa Bay, we performed a considerable amount of planning. On Friday, the movers came to load our office furniture. We backed up our mini computer for the last time before unplugging it and loading it on the truck. We then drove as a convoy to Florida. On Monday morning, the movers brought in our furniture to the new office, we installed the computer, and were back up and operational by 9:00am Monday morning. Some people thought the move couldn’t be done over a weekend. We didn’t think twice about it. It was a pleasure though to watch this project being performed like clock work.

This leads me to the next point, I enjoy seeing someone solve a problem generally regarded as impossible to conquer. There are a lot of naysayers in the world telling us what can or cannot be done. It’s always a pleasure to prove them wrong. In particular, we produced a technology to automatically design and document information systems based on the interpretation of requirements. People said it couldn’t be done. We proved them wrong. We also produced a technology to automatically calculate corporate priorities which others said couldn’t be done. Again, we proved them wrong. The key to success was nothing more than a little perseverance, and a lot of common sense.

Beyond this, it is a pleasure to watch anyone who knows what he/she is doing, be it a craftsman creating a quality product, a salesman who knows his product line, a customer service agent who knows how to patiently expedite the problems of a client, a waitress who performs her job friendly and professionally, or a janitor who takes pride in his work. The antithesis of this is the person who has earned degrees and/or certificates, yet hasn’t a clue on how to produce or deliver anything.

I also enjoy seeing a good deed performed whether it is for a neighbor, friend, a co-worker, or a complete stranger, thereby maintaining our sense of humanity and decency. It could be as simple as mowing the person’s lawn, shoveling snow from a driveway, offering a meal, or helping out anyway we can, all quietly and respectfully.

Then we come into the simple pleasures of the physical world, such as listening to some great music without commercial interruption. For me, it’s jazz, classical, big band and good old rock and roll.

Many consider food a pleasurable experience, but not just any food. Many of us enjoy the comfort foods prepared by mothers and grandmothers, be it nothing but warm bread, cakes or pies. Perhaps there is a special salad they know how to make, or a main dish such as lasagna, a casserole, or something from our cultural past, such as an ethnic dish. Likewise, they equally enjoy preparing it knowing it to be a favorite of ours.

Then there is the matter of sweets. As a kid, one of my favorite Halloween treats was a Chunky bar, which we considered the nirvana of chocolate. I happened to spot one in a local drug store recently and had to have it, and, Yes, it was every bit as good as I remembered it.

We also take pleasure in local cuisine, especially if we have been away for a period of time. In Buffalo, NY it is char-grilled foot long hot dogs with curly fries, a Beef on a Weck, Chicken Wings, clam bars, and a Friday night fish fry. In Cincinnati, OH it is ribs, goetta, metts and brats, ice cream, a Frisch’s Big Boy, and sliders from White Castle. In Tampa Bay, it’s grouper cooked a variety of ways, shrimp, Cuban sandwiches, and Greek salads. Yum!

There is also nothing quite like the love of a good woman, and to witness the triumphs of your offspring, be it a home run or touchdown, a good report card, graduation, jobs, etc. Sitting on the sidelines and just enjoying the moment can be very rewarding.

Other little pleasures include reading a book that doesn’t disappoint you. You feel like it was time well vested. I also happen to like wadding in a fresh water stream fishing for trout. There is something to be said about being divorced from the real world for a few hours and preoccupied hunting your quarry.

Bottom-line for me, I take pleasure in having a good drink, good cigar, and good conversation with friends. I find this more rewarding than any mansion, yacht or fancy automobile. Then again, I have nothing to prove to anybody.

First published: February 12, 2016

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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REPUBLICAN VALUES

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 15, 2021

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– It is actually quite simple.

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To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I recently attended a Republican strategy session where the speaker discussed a list of activities for the group to pursue. Among them, he mentioned the need to “promote Republican values.” As morality is an important subject with me, I asked what he meant by this. At first, he referred me to the Republican Party Platform as produced in 2016 and still in effect to this day. It’s a nice document but doesn’t precisely define values. Instead, it lists a series of positions the party embraces, such as fair and simple taxes for growth, balancing the budget and reducing the federal debt, elimination of massive trade deficits, promoting legal immigration, position statements on the various amendments to the U.S. Consitution, etc. These are all noble efforts, but doesn’t precisely define Republican “values.” There is also a section on the GOP web site recapping the platform called, “Renewing American Values,” but I do not believe this was what the speaker was alluding to.

The platform is nice, but the items listed will change over time. Instead, I am looking for the hard “values” Republicans believe in, e,g, what is the fundamental dogma of the party, thereby becoming a litmus test for comparing it to others.

It is said Republican values are derived from Judeo-Christian values. These are values which ultimately defines modern civilization. Hence, this explains why Republicans embrace such things as the Ten Commandments, and why they hold dear the rights and freedoms of the common person as defined by the U.S. Constitution. Such values include basic honesty, fairness, truthfulness and more.

It also implies acceptance of the principles of a Supreme Being, such as the “Golden Rule” – “do unto others as you would have others do unto you” (which all religions accept). Such principles represent the morality people embrace. Judeo-Christian values ultimately represent an amalgamation of the principles of the various related denominations.

So, can an agnostic be a Republican? Yes, it is possible, but not likely due to the lack of acceptance of a Supreme Being. However, if the person accepts Judeo-Christian values, as well as those defined below, then, Yes, the agnostic will likely be a Republican.

What follows is not an official statement by the party, but if I had to articulate Republican values, I would suggest it comes down to three simple points:

1. THE DIGNITY OF THE HUMAN SPIRIT, meaning the individual is entitled to unalienable rights and freedoms such as, “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” This gives the individual the right to pursue any form of livelihood, to build, create, invent, innovate and personally prosper from such efforts. This means values such as equality and fairness are vital to this effort, but it offers no guarantee for success, it just establishes the environment for the individual to operate, not to dictate their actions. This means the individual can either succeed or fail, which is an inherent property of capitalism.

This value also means the individual should have purpose and meaning in their life. People should lead a worthy and productive life thereby encouraging them to live life responsibly and industriously. Again, this supports the concept of capitalism, as well as fair trade.

2. WE MUST LIVE AND WORK TOGETHER IN PEACE. To be able to “row on the same oar” requires recognition of the concept of equality, something Republicans have long touted since before the Civil War. This explains why racism has been frowned upon in the GOP for many years.

Living and working together also requires the rule of law thereby establishing common rules of conduct. The absence of law represents anarchy, thereby defeating the concept. Aside from laws, there are the unwritten customs and etiquette used to establish social interaction, such as forms of address, appearance, vocabulary, common courtesy, etc., not to forget honor and respect for our elders and predecessors.

Republicans also promote patriotism so the country can come together in times of national or regional crisis.

3. SUPPORT THE FAMILY UNIT – Republicans value the sanctity of marriage, and the roles Mothers and Fathers play in raising their children. This includes support for the triumphs and tragedies associated with the family unit; e.g., a graduation, the arrival of children and grandchildren, a promotion, an accident, or a death in the family. All of these acts represent real world experiences all families must inevitably experience, which explains why the strength of the family unit is so important, and why Republicans are concerned with matters related to education, insurance, property, housing, religion, financial prosperity, and love of neighbor, community, and country.

Republicans also believe it is the family unit that is responsible for raising their offspring. Others may also influence the development of children, such as schooling and entertainment media, but the ultimate authority over the development of offspring lies with the elders of the family and nobody else.

These three simple values, along with basic Judeo-Christian values, spell out the values of the Republican Party and provides insight into why the party’s platform is written the way it is. They are good values and, Yes, Republicans should be promoting them to the public.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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REMOVING PALMETTO PALMS

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 10, 2021

BRYCE ON LIFE

– and the satisfaction derived thereof.

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To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

We moved into our current residence about thirty years ago. At the time, we backed up to a bit of a Florida jungle, with pines, oaks, and several Palmetto Palms. At first, I thought the Palmettos gave the house a Florida feel to the property. There was one catch though, which I learned early on, you had to constantly maintain the Palmettos or they would grow out of control, bringing vines and vermin with them. So, once a year I would give them a “haircut” which was no small exercise. It took several hours to prune them back accordingly, and several garbage cans or bags to dispose of all the fauna.

As years went by, I finally acquiesced and hired workers to come in and clean out the Palmettos, along with the associated vines and weeds growing there. This became an expensive endeavor as it cost me thousands of dollars to maintain the property. I desperately wanted to put an end to this vicious cycle, so I finally contracted with a trio of companies to dig out the Palmettos, extend my sprinkler system and sod the area.

To do the job, my first contractor obtained a Bobcat digging machine to remove the Palmettos. If you are unfamiliar with Bobcats, think of it as a mini-bulldozer. Frankly, he saw it as a relatively easy job which shouldn’t take much time to perform. Wow, was he in for a surprise. The Palmettos were so old, their root structures went deep in the sandy soil of Florida. At first I thought the Palmettos were getting the better of him. Nonetheless, he persevered. The roots were so deep, I thought the Bobcat would flip over as he tried to extract them. Slowly though, one by one, he successfully pulled them from the soil.

After all of this, my backyard currently looks like a moon landing, but this will all be corrected when the site is prepped for the sod, which is coming.

In hind-site, I had a strange sense of satisfaction from watching the removal of the Palmettos. This is something that had been a thorn in my side for several years. I was so disgusted by it, I often thought of pouring gasoline on them and burning them out which, of course, would see me ending up in jail. So, you can imagine my frustration in maintaining these palms.

Watching the removal of something as nagging as the Palmettos actually put a smile on my face. “Finally, it’s over!” I said to myself, and I felt a great sense of gratification come over me, something I haven’t experienced in a long time.

“Good, it’s over, hot damn!” I thought and I poured myself a congratulatory drink.

This got me thinking, as to why I was so happy, and I realized it was a small victory for me. This was something that irritated me for years and I finally remedied the situation. As I grow older, I find it becomes necessary to keep things simple, and not to complicate life. Once the sod has been installed, I think I’m going to begin a campaign of cleaning out the garage and attic, and the house in general. Basically, I want to clean up the flotsam and jetsam surrounding me and stay as unencumbered as possible. That would be a huge victory and will undoubtedly cause another satisfying moment for me.

I guess satisfaction comes from doing a good job of divesting ourselves of the complications of life so we may live with fewer headaches and enjoy ourselves. I also do not want to leave a mess for my heirs to clean-up. No, “Keep It Simple Stupid” (the KISS approach) is my mantra now and I am looking for more satisfying moments.

I also discovered as you get older, it is wise to relish all of your victories, large or small, as they become fewer and far between.

Now, on to the garage. Charge!

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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WHY IS EVERYONE HIRING?

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 8, 2021

BRYCE ON EMPLOYMENT

– As Covid-19 begins to fade away, companies return to normal.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I recently went on my annual pilgrimage of fly-fishing in North Carolina. I drove this time in spite of the recent gas scare where the pipeline was allegedly sabotaged. Nonetheless, I traveled through Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and of course, Florida. Along the way, in all of these states I saw signs clearly stating, “Hiring!” I primarily saw them at gas stations, fast food restaurants, laundromats, supermarkets, drug stores, even bait shops. I was also told by the locals there were numerous big companies in the area hiring as well.

After fishing early in the morning, a buddy of mine and I stopped in Spruce Pine, NC at a KFC/Taco Bell for lunch. Their sign out front invited job seekers to come in on Fridays for their Interview party. “Party?” I asked myself and began wondering if hats and horns were included. It was then I started noticing a change going on. When we ordered our food, the manager was a white woman, but everyone working in the back were all of Mexican heritage. I don’t have a problem with this off-hand except if I have a problem with an order, which I did that day, I couldn’t remember enough high school Spanish to let them know what was wrong. Oy!

I am now hearing more and more stories of companies trying “hiring parties” and other gimmicks to encourage people to come in and go through the hiring process, such as a signing bonus to work at a fast food restaurant. Down here in the Tampa Bay area, a local McDonalds’s made the news when they offered $50 for people to come in and be interviewed for a job. Despite the incentive, very few people applied. One of the managers claimed people didn’t even come in to scam them. The company stopped the experiment after two weeks.

The point is, as the Covid-19 panic dissipates, and companies want to return to normal, they face a brick wall in terms of employment. To illustrate, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ latest unemployment report states, “Both the unemployment rate, at 6.1 percent, and the number of unemployed persons, at 9.8 million, were little changed in April. These measures are down considerably from their recent highs in April 2020 but remain well above their levels prior to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic (3.5 percent and 5.7 million, respectively, in February 2020).”

So what’s going on; why don’t people want to work? Quite frankly, why should they if the government is going to pay them not to work? To find out more, I checked with the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity who claims, as a result of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which was signed into law on March 11, 2021, the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), which provides an additional $300 for eligible claimants, has been extended to September 6, 2021. This includes former employees, and now, courtesy of the CARES Act, independent contractors and other workers who are ordinarily ineligible for unemployment benefits. Translation: just about everyone who asks for it can get it.

Keep in mind, the $300 is a supplement, not the main source of unemployment income. This means a lot of people can be collecting a substantial sum through September 6th. Consider this, if you are the second person in the household responsible for producing income, there is little incentive for you to return to work. Hence, the need for “Hiring!” signs.

To minorities, this is a golden opportunity to advance and obtain job security if they act and prove themselves accordingly. So much so, anyone staying at home to claim the unemployment money may find it difficult to secure a job when the gravy-train has ended.

The point is, while companies are begging for workers, and people are staying home to live off the government’s teat, now is the time to get a good job.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments »

LEARNING TO RAISE DOGS, AGAIN

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 3, 2021

BRYCE ON PETS

– Life with “Pearl the Girl.”

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Back in my youth, my family had two large German Shepherds who were both delightful. Not only were they loyal and protective, they were simply a lot of fun to be around. Yes, I did my fair share of feeding them, taking them for walks, and washing them, but they were actually low maintenance. I cannot remember a time when there was an “accident” on the carpet, unless perhaps when they were pups. Even then, we watched and trained them carefully.

As I grew older and had my own family, I avoided getting a dog as I was traveling a lot back then and had little time to train the animal, plus we didn’t want any “accidents” in the house. It wasn’t that we hated dogs, we just had no time for them as my family had several extracurricular activities to tend to, and consequently, peace reigned in the Bryce household for several years.

My mother on the other hand loved dogs and was never without one. Following the shepards, she had a Boston Bull, two Dachshunds (who both lived to an amazing 18 years of age), and finally a Chiweenie named Pearl. Unfortunately, my Mom passed away a couple of months ago and I inherited her dog. So now, after several quiet years, I find myself to be a dog owner.

I had never heard of a Chiweenie before. It’s a small dog, part Dachshund, part Chihuahua, (and part Wildcat I think). Pearl looks more like a Dachshund than Chihuahua. Interestingly, she is probably the fastest dog my Mom ever had and could easily outrun the Shepherds. She likes to kick on the afterburners now and then, her ears fly back, and she reaches warp speed in no time at all. It’s actually remarkable how fast she can go and I know she likes to show off, not only her speed, but her cornering abilities.

Now I am re-learning how to care for a dog. The difference is whereas I grew up with big dogs, now I have to content with a small twelve pound dog that runs like a rocket.

One of the biggest things I had to come to grips with is feeding the dog. Back when she was with my Mom, she ate normal dog food and kibble over and over again on a daily basis. The food came in a small plastic container and consisted of several flavors, e.g; beef stroganoff, rotisserie chicken, omelets, prime rib, etc. I’ve always wondered how they verified the flavors. Since dogs don’t speak, it is logical to assume a human has to taste the food and label them accordingly. I do not think this is a job I would relish, particularly since it is all made from liver which I detest.

Even though I continued my Mom’s food regimen for Pearl, after awhile she simply would not eat it anymore, regardless how long I would leave it out for her. After a few days of this, I was beginning to worry about her health and tossed a piece of beef bologna into her bowl which she gobbled up. I also tried some leftover deli turkey and ham which, again, was enthusiastically devoured. When I tried to reintroduce her old food, she would have nothing to do with it for days. As of this writing, I now give her deli Roast Turkey, Tavern Ham, and some other cuts of beef. When this runs its course, I suspect Filet Mignon and Lobster Newburg will be in the offing. She now eats better than I do. Ah, the life of a dog.

Then there is a variety of dog cookies and chew sticks for her discriminating taste. Usually she enjoys them, but I have seen her turn her nose up to those treats designed to clean her teeth and keep her breath fresh, which I discovered was important, particularly at 6am when she wants to go out and stares closely at me with her panting breath going directly up my nose.

Shortly after Mom passed away, I received a note in the mail from the county government claiming it was time to renew Pearl’s registration. I thought, “No problem,” it would be just a couple of bucks. Wow, did I get this wrong. I had to first prove she had a series of shots, including: Rabies, DAPv, Fecal, Heartworm, Bordetella, and Influenza. That’s right, a Flu shot (actually it was two shots). I never heard of such a shot for dogs back in the day. Nonetheless, $375 later, I could apply for the county registration.

I took a fishing trip recently and was forced to put Pearl in a nice kennel as nobody would watch her for me. This was a first for her but I thought it would be good for her socialization skills to meet other dogs. Frankly, I dont know how she reacted. The people at the kennel said she was shy among other dogs but did fine. Another $375 later, I picked her up and took her home.

Initially, I was worried she would piddle on the carpets in my house. However, she was trained to do her business on puppy pads and continues to do so to this day. I take her out several times a day, and she does her business outside, but the puppy pads remain the preferred place for her to take a dump, representing another fun task for me to clean up. Oh, by the way, I’ve probably already paid hundreds of dollars for the many packs of pads she has gone through. Did I mention, dogs are much more expensive today than back when we had the shepherds? (Duh).

As I said, I take her out several times a day, the first being somewhere between 5:30am – 6:00am when it is still dark. In my neighborhood, we have coyotes occasionally roam our streets looking for rabbits, cats and small dogs. As I am keenly aware Pearl would make a snack for the coyotes, I arm myself with a Louisville Slugger to fend them off should the necessity require it. So here is this big guy in his night shirt and not much else, out in his driveway waving a bat to protect a small dog. Frankly, even I had to laugh at how preposterous I looked and was glad I still can get up before the neighbors do.

I have also gotten used to her idiosyncrasies, such as giving me a look indicating she wants to be picked up and held, her burps as she looks at me directly in the eyes, her warning barks, her baths, playing with her toys, her snoring, and she is the only dog I’ve known who sleeps comfortably on her back. She used to be scared to ride in the car as it represented a trip to the Vet. Since I’ve had her, I take her out more frequently, roll down her window and let her look and smell the outside world. She loves it.

People have asked me if I intend to put her down, give her to someone, or drop her off at the pound. Since she is just four years old (going on five soon), I cannot in good conscious bring myself to do this. She is still a good basic loving dog, and even though she has become somewhat of an anchor to me, I cannot bring myself to harm her.

More than anything, I have discovered I am the one who has had to make adjustments to my life, not Pearl. After seeing where she hides her toys and how she positions her bed, I now realize it is her home, not mine. Whereas the shepherds we had years ago were low maintenance, “Pearl the Girl” requires much more, and because she craves my attention, I really cannot say “No” to her.

I realize some of you will say, “Tim, you’re spoiling her,” and you might be right. As I see it though, I’m just trying to co-exist with her, but I think she actually got the better of the deal. Perhaps my biggest concern with her is her uncanny ability to get under my feet which will sooner or later lead to me taking a fall. Then she would finally have the house all to herself, which I think was her plan all along.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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WHY ‘THE BIG LIE’ WON’T GO AWAY

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 1, 2021

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– The Dems/Media cannot spin their way out of this one.

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To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

The Democrats and News Media (same thing) would have us believe there were no improprieties related to the 2020 election; that there was nothing wrong with the voting machines, that the sudden surge in mail-in ballots at the end was a coincidence, and Joe Biden won the presidential election by record numbers; not bad for someone who hid in his basement during most of the campaign, and was easily defeated by Hillary Clinton, not just once, but twice in prior elections. Let us also not forget President Trump earned ten million more votes than the 2016 election where he handily defeated Mrs. Clinton. According to the Dems/Media, everything was legitimate and anyone contesting the findings are obnoxious sore losers. They even went so far as to label the contention that the election was fixed, “The Big Lie,” thereby trying to put the onus back on the Republicans to prove it or shut-up. This is a story that simply will not go away any time soon.

The drama continues as they are slowly auditing the electoral processes in the battleground states of Arizona, Georgia, and Michigan. The press insists they have “turned up zero evidence of systemic voter fraud and confirmed the Election Day results.” Not so fast. As much as the Dems/Media want to see this issue swept under the rug, the election audits are actually expanding, hence the Left viciously ridicules anyone supporting “The Big Lie.” Although I personally believe they will find irregularities, the Republicans only have to find just one substantial problem to hang their hat on before pushing this in the courts, something the Dems/Media will openly resist. As much as they want to see this all go away, millions of Americans have doubts about the legitimacy of the election.

To illustrate, a recent Ipsos/Reuters Poll: “The Big Lie” (May 21, 2021) should be cause for concern by the Dems/Media. The poll used responses from 2,007 adults, including 909 Democrats, 754 Republicans, and 344 Independents. Of particular interest, the poll found:

* 61% of Republicans believe the election was “stolen” from Trump, as does 19% of Independents and 10% of Democrats.

* 56% of Republicans believe the election was rigged for the result of illegal voting, as does 16% of Independents and 5% of Democrats.

* 53% of Republicans think Donald Trump is the actual President, not Joe Biden, as does 22% of Independents, and 3% of Democrats.

* Whereas 86% of Democrats believe mail-in/absentee ballots were counted correctly, 71% of Republicans did not, nor did 26% of Independents.

No matter how you slice it, the 2020 election is perceived as tainted by a lot of Americans. Everyone knows it, particularly the Dems/Media. This explains why they continuously push back with “The Big Lie” slur to denigrate anyone who doesn’t tow the party line. A typical Dem/Media talking point refutes all this by stating something like, “Dozens of courts rejected Trump’s challenges to the results, but Trump and his supporters have persisted in pushing baseless conspiracy theories on conservative news outlets.” In other words, it is the fault of conservative news outlets for spreading “The Big Lie.” No, not really, but this is what they would have us believe as they see this as an opportunity to undermine the popular conservative news.

Again, the election will forever be remembered as being tainted and, as such, the American people are losing their faith in our ability to conduct honest elections which will ultimately have long-term repercussions. Now is the time to clean this up, not later, particularly as the 2024 election looms closer. The point is, will we tolerate another suspicious election and the politicians that come along with it? I hope not.

Let us for a moment assume it is discovered the election was fixed. Will the Democrat politicians falsely elected go quietly into the night? And will their legislation and executive orders be automatically rescinded? In a word, No. They will stay firmly in their positions until forceably removed by the courts. Only then will we really know if our Republic truly works.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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REPUBLICAN CLUBS FALTER

Posted by Tim Bryce on May 27, 2021

BRYCE ON POLITICS

– Members are moving to new activist groups.

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To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Conservative political clubs are proliferating following the 2020 election. Now we hear about such groups as “Republican Liberty Caucus,” “Community Patriots,” not to mention “Trump Clubs,” and even old Tea Party groups are going through a Renaissance. In the mean time, traditional Republican clubs are going through turbulent times as people are gravitating to the new clubs. One can only ask why.

To me, the Republican clubs are showing signs of impotency. They have evolved into more of a social committee as opposed to an activist group. I have been visiting the new groups recently and can readily see a sharp contrast between the old and new.

The new clubs appear to be more in tune with the issues and legislation. They are also more organized and enthusiastically make their presence known at School Board and County Commissioner meetings. Whereas the old GOP clubs are playing defense, the new groups are on the offense, something very important to those unhappy with the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.

Whereas the staid old GOP groups are content following rote procedures, the new groups are more proactive and think outside of the box. Not surprising, the enthusiasm at the new clubs is infectious.

Recently, I wrote about “Turning Nonprofits Upside-Down” where I suggest instead of top-down monarchies, bottom-up grassroots institutions are actually more effective. This is precisely what we are seeing in the new conservative clubs.

To illustrate, consider the principles of the Republican Liberty Caucus (RLC), where all members must embrace a pledge (click for FLORIDA’s page). Further, they will not endorse any political candidate that doesn’t support the following “Liberty Compact”:

“I pledge to the citizens of this State, and to the American people, that as their elected representative I will work to restore liberty, not restrict it; shrink government, not expand it; reduce taxes, not raise them; abolish programs, not create them; promote the freedom and independence of citizens, not the interference of government in their lives; and observe the limited, enumerated powers of our Constitution, not ignore them.”

Those politicians who fail to take the pledge will not be embraced by the RLC, plain and simple. In fact, they will now have an organized group working to stop the politician.

The RLC also keeps tabs on the voting records of government officials and even has a “Hall of Shame,” complete with certificate for politicians who have really screwed-up, a clever way for their members to express dissatisfaction with specific politicians. All of this is pro-active as opposed to reactive as typically found in traditional GOP groups.

Because of such changes, some Republican clubs are cancelling party sanctions, and switching over to the new groups. As one example, the North Suncoast Republican Club (NSRC) in Citrus County, Florida recently had its charter pulled inexplicably by the Citrus County GOP. They were not provided anything in writing as to why this occurred. The club tried to appeal the action, but, so far, nothing from the Republican Party of Florida. Because of this, the group seized on the opportunity to drop the Republican moniker and go independent, as the “North Suncoast Conservative Club.” Remarkably, after switching over, they had a windfall of new members. Keep in mind, this had been the oldest GOP club in the county. Their message to the Republican establishment is simple, “Don’t tread on me.”

Such political shenanigans will haunt the Republican party as they are no longer the only game in town. In terms of activity, political parties would be wise to spend less time dictating policy and more time listening to their constituents. Failure to do so will only weaken the party. To illustrate, when was the last time a GOP club organized a simple poll to define constituent interests? I, for one, have never seen it. Such input is essential for political campaigns, as well as to help voters decide which candidates to support.

As I keep saying, it is time to “turn nonprofits upside-down.”

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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MOVING UP TOO FAST

Posted by Tim Bryce on May 25, 2021

BRYCE ON BUSINESS

– What happens when you do not pay your dues?

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As we enter the workforce, it is natural to be ambitious and make a name for ourselves thereby establishing credibility. This is certainly not new. However, as the Baby Boomers begin to retire, they are rapidly being replaced by Millennials, and frankly, many are not prepared.

Regardless of what they teach in the business schools, there are several nuances to assuming the role of manager. You have to have the proper social and communications skills to work with people, you should be cognizant of the corporate culture and how to manipulate it to your benefit, understanding the systems and technology of the business, and much more. This can only be learned through experience, and hopefully a mentor. Unfortunately, few companies appreciate the mentor concept and throw junior people into the breech prematurely to see who will survive. Without proper supervision, most of the junior people are doomed to failure.

A local distributor of manufacturing products recently changed their management hierarchy, demoting mature sales and administrative managers, and replacing them with people who were young enough to be their children (about 27 years old). There was a lot of unbridled enthusiasm about them, but little in terms of common sense for running a business. To illustrate, their massive warehouse had only one operable light bulb. The young administrative manager believed the landlord was responsible for replacing them, yet it was theirs to maintain. Office equipment was sorely in need of maintenance, particularly the photocopier which regularly printed fuzzy dark images on paper. Neither of the managers knew how to process a customer order electronically. Consequently, the company began to experience delays in processing. Having never performed a year-end inventory, they fudged the numbers as opposed to getting it right. And the year-end company Christmas party was a bust.

None of this was complicated, yet they lacked the experience and common sense to run the office smoothly. Not surprising, employee morale is at an all time low, and for some strange reason, their corporate managers accept their performance.

More troubling, although the juniors may possess infectious enthusiasm, their inexperience could lead the company into a lawsuit due to some unintended faux pas.

The point is, these two junior people were promoted much too fast. Instead of weaning them with a viable career path, corporate officers threw them into their new positions unexpectedly. Being impetuous, they were not interested in seeking the advice of their predecessors who were still employed by the company. The elders simply shook their head in disbelief as they watched the juniors commit one mistake after another.

This is just one instance, but I am seeing similar situations occur in other companies where junior people are asked to sink or swim in higher positions. The logic for this is bewildering to me as the productivity of such companies diminish using this approach. It is also unfair to the junior people who are put into this position and lack the maturity and experience to perform their jobs effectively.

One can only wonder, what in God’s name are they thinking at corporate?

First published: February 8, 2016

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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TURNING NONPROFITS UPSIDE-DOWN

Posted by Tim Bryce on May 20, 2021

BRYCE ON BUSINESS

– “Who serves who?”

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Most nonprofit organizations with franchises, e.g., “chapters,” are structured in a top-down hierarchy, typically featuring autocratic rule. It is not uncommon to see such groups organized as:

National -> State -> County/District -> Municipal

I have found this in political organizations, fraternal, and professional trade groups, but I’m starting to believe we have it all wrong; it should be bottom-up, not top-down. After all, it is the bottom-level who represents the true constituents. In theory, the higher levels are there to render administrative support, nothing more. Even in Freemasonry, Masonic Lodges existed well before the Grand Lodge system was invented in 1717. The intent was to bring consistency to rituals and standards for administration, but it didn’t exactly end up this way, and Grand Lodges today tend to throw their weight around to bully the Lodges and their members.

Unfortunately, it seems the bigger the bureaucracy, the bigger the egos are to manage it. We now live in an era of control freaks. Instead on encouraging personal initiative, such dictators want to micromanage the actions of everyone which I personally find disturbing. Typically, these are people who didn’t accomplish much in their professional lives, which explains why they become Attila the Hun in running nonprofits.

Probably the best way to differentiate between a commercial enterprise and a nonprofit organization is by asking, “Who serves who?” Whether it is a small business or a major corporation, the commercial enterprise is primarily concerned with serving its customers. In general, such companies will go to great lengths to keep their customers happy in order to promote repeat business and improve cash flow. They are also fully aware their customers have choices, if they are not satisfied with their product or service there is always someone else waiting to take the business away from them. It’s called the “free enterprise system.” A nonprofit organization is another beast altogether.

In theory, a nonprofit is supposed to provide a service or product for its constituents. Such people are pooled together primarily due to a common interest of some kind, be it a professional trade group, politics, a homeowners association, a sports club, a fraternal/civic organization, etc. Such organizations are usually legal entities operating under the sanctions of a state government and perhaps a parent organization. Normally, nonprofits are administered by a board of directors which include officers serving for a specific term of duty involving various responsibilities, such as a President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, Committee Chairman, etc. It is not uncommon for people to covet such titles as it looks impressive on a resume and is often used to climb a social ladder. Whereas the intent for the administration of the nonprofit is to serve its constituents, quite often the reverse is implemented whereby the membership is coerced into serving its officers thereby creating a monarchy where one should not exist. As trivial or petty such organizations may appear, there are certain types of people who become drunk with power.

Ideally, in a nonprofit, the officers should be ego-less and ever reminded that such groups are typically volunteer organizations and, as such, are under no obligation to follow orders. True, such groups will undoubtedly have governing documents defining specific duties and responsibilities; regardless, it is a volunteer organization where people participate as it suits them. The last thing a nonprofit needs is a bully or someone exerting his/her will to disrupt the harmony of the group.

So, what should we do when we find the constituents are serving the officials? Voting is obviously the first alternative that comes to mind, but people can be rather apathetic and behave like sheep, which officials count on to manage the flock. Brainwashing and information management (aka “spin”) are devices commonly used for such control. Term limits is another alternative, unless it is discovered a one party system has been implemented whereby cronies take turns running an operation for someone else behind the scenes.

Perhaps the best approach though is to privatize nonprofit organizations thereby causing administrators to truly work for the people. Such institutions are certainly not new. To illustrate, commercial management companies are proliferating throughout the country to serve homeowner associations (since the officials are too lazy to assume responsibility themselves). Although you have to pay for such service, you can change companies at a moment’s notice. Privatizing nonprofit organizations offers one important advantage; since they are run by commercial enterprises, who understand the need for properly serving their customers, we would at least know “who serves who.”

The point is, maybe it’s time to turn nonprofits upside-down, thereby reminding officials they work for their constituents, not the other way around. The only way to implement such a scenario is to make the nonprofit independent thereby making them free to recognize and associate with those organizations the group wish’s to. To illustrate, this is one reason why GOP clubs are abandoning the “Republican” moniker and labeling themselves as “Conservatives” instead. This is happening because the grassroots people have grown weary of the bullying and incompetence at the county and state levels.

Just remember, “who works for who?” Do the officials serve the constituents or are the constituents expected to serve the officials? If the latter, you likely have an unhealthy situation brewing.

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – For a listing of my books, click HERE.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2021 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on Spotify, WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; SVA RADIO – “Senior Voice America”, the leading newspaper for active mature adults; or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

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