2009.12.30

Human Blood For Sale?

17.59.19 - Mark

I keep seeing random guesses on the cost of human blood, with some saying just the cost of training the people who help collect the donations to $200+ per pint, so while fruitlessly hunting for something that at least feels like a legit source, I did come across this older Slate article - "Does the Red Cross Sell Blood?" The title, and the first few points it makes go against what the American Red Cross says (second question on that page)

We all know that blood in worth far more than anything it may cost, but we know that it costs something to save lives - from the people who are trained to conduct and prepare donated units, the proper testings, storage, and transportation, to the fact that supply and demand fluctuates thought the year. Even the potential future of Artificial Bloodmakes us wonder about the cost of "free" blood. It would just be nice to have nice solid facts rather than wild uncited speculations.

I doubt it would cause me to stop donating blood

Link | 0 Comments |


2007.05.22

The price of gas is the price of gas

16.55.10 - Mark

I'm sick and tired of people bitching, moaning, and calling for political action over the price of gas. Yes, Gas prices are approaching $4 a gallon, but honestly what can you do about it? What the hell is the US Government going to do that doesn't take us several steps closer to socialism?

If you need the gas you buy it, if you don't want to buy it live without it. It's basic capitalism, which last I checked was part of the reason our government was dicking around in the middle east. I've been filling up my Honda '91 (which only gets about 24miles to the gallon) about once a month. Instead of driving everywhere I ride share, ride a bike, or even walk. If there was such a thing locally I'd consider using mass transit. Gasoline for your car is not an absolute essential, so stop treating it like it is.

Link | 0 Comments |


2006.06.25

Just say no

10.56.18 - Mark

Since I'm never one to pass up a story about how Mayberry is ruining the wonderful city of Mount Airy. This whole mess involving a coulpe of short sighted idiots trying to build a Don Knotts/Barney Fife statue to compliment our Andy Griffith Statue (which I'm also not a big fan of) is just wrong.

First, TV Land (who paid for the Andy Statue) did not want it to be in Mount Airy, they wanted it to be in Raleigh as the show represented the state and not the city of Mount Airy. The only reason we actually got the Andy statue was because we're the home town of Andy Griffith and he asked TV land to put one here. Lastly this effort is a bunch of fans, the Andy state was given to us by a CBS/Viacom company.

Don Knotts is not related to Mount Airy in any tangable way, and was actually very dedicated to his own hometown in West Virginia. This effort is not part of a fan movement, it is a short sighted attempt at getting a few more tourist dollars out of the Mayberry theme before all of the real fans die off.

Yesterday I was downtown hanging out at a comple of shops (including my new favorite Mac Reseller Cybergear) and very few people in the community, as best as I can tell, want to keep milking the Mayberry Theme. It's a monster that has hit its prime and now that it has, it is very quickly going downhill. In 5 or 10 years these statues will be all but meaningless, and either the community will have moved on to other forms of tourism, taking advantages of the universal themes that we have in this area, such as the natural beauty we're privleged to be surrounded by (see also my posts on Raven Knob) or the fast growing Wine industry.

I'm sorry, but on this issue, I'm with CBS and the Don Knotts' estate. No.

Link | 0 Comments |


2006.03.26

Leaving Mayberry

11.30.57 - Mark

Mount Airy is a good town. Boring as hell and ignorant at times, but over all its a good place for families. It rests in the Piedmont near the Blue ridge Mountains and the area surrounding Mount Airy is stunning, which I was reminded of while spending some time at Raven Knob yesterday.

It's also somewhat well known as the hometown of Andy Griffith and a recognized inspiration for Mayberry.

Ever since I moved here a few years ago being Mayberry has been a big deal for the town, since tourism has taken over as the main industry since the textiles moved out of the country. I can understand that, however a year or two ago the city brought in some economic consultants and after talking to various people in the community they came to the conclusion that while Mayberry was a good tourism launch pad , the city needed to divirisy its tourism appeal into "lifestyle tourism" focusing on simple living, outdoor activities, arts, crafts, music, etc. But for whatever reason this study hasn't been widely circulated in town.

Insted of pushing those other avenues, we have everyone and their dog trying to capatilize on Mayberry. Mayberry Square, Mayberry Motor Inn, Mayberry Courthouse, Opie's Candy Store, Snappy Lunch, Floyd's Barber Shop, Mayberry Auto, Aunt Bea's (resteraunt), Mayberry Weadding Chapel, Squad Car Tours, Wally's Service Station, the list goes on. Even the main website for the chamber of commerce is VisitMayberry.com. There's even a business called Mayberry Internet Auctions on the outskirts of town.

Rather than trying to move past Mayberry as the actors who stared in the show die off (the latest being Don Knotts about a month ago) we're seeing more and more business come in trying to cater to the Mayberry Sect, some successfully like Snappy Lunch and Floyd's, others not so much (Mayberry Pet Store), and when we disappoint fans, its major news, like a pair of fans from Georgia came to visit Snappy Lunch, only to discover its closed for renovations to bring it up to code. They might not get their desired meal, but they'll get into the local newspapers (I don't want to know how the paper discoverd that story).

It's all a bit disappointing, and I really want to see more people in the community try to move past Mayberry, because in 5 or 10 years, I don't think its going to be as successful as it is now.

Link | 0 Comments |