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Opinion Editorials

Hello World, Goodbye Sock Puppet



I just spent 25 minutes on Google trying to figure out which film critic threatened to quit if the producers of Police Academy made another sequel. They did. He didn’t.

It’s important that you know this is how I decided to make my splash here. Earlier today (or yesterday, for those reading from Nova Scotia), the esteemed Athol Kay threatened “to hang up my hat” if I ever joined one of these “shiny group blogs.”

As Ricky Bobby said, “Did that blow your mind because THAT JUST HAPPENED!”

I have a hunch our beloved Kiwi will weasel out by saying he only was going to hang up his hat, not his mangy toupee-wearing sock. Says Happy Harry H. in Pump Up the Volume, “So be it.”

Aside from the fact that I’m here because Benn felt sorry for me after I was left out of the cool kids’ club in the first round, bringing back fond memories of the 17 minutes I spent waiting to be picked for kickball, the bigger question I’m trying to answer is what am I going to bring to the table?

I already talk national on my blog as well as local, proving (at least to myself) that you can do so successfully. Though I can’t figure out why my Technorati ranking’s falling as my Feedburner subscriptions keep rising. So I don’t need an outlet.

Unless, of course, I make this the outlet where I kick it like Facemob and shout “F*** the (Trademark) Police” … know what I saying?

Maybe in time some of the more acerbic screeds will make their way over here. Just as maybe in time B.R. will find out I’m here mostly because I’m falling for Lani. I mean, who can’t love a gal who signs her e-mails, “OU Sucks.” Especially after they kicked some Bevo tuchas just this past weekend.

Ah, well … maybe it’s time for this champ to stop talking, sit out a few plays.

Until next time, I’m Jonathan Dalton. You stay classy, agentgenius readers.

Jonathan Dalton is a Realtor with RE/MAX Desert Showcase in Peoria, Arizona and is the author of the All Phoenix Real Estate blog as well as a half-dozen neighborhood sites. His partner, Tobey, is a somewhat rotund beagle who sleeps 21 hours a day.

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  1. Benn Rosales

    October 11, 2007 at 3:55 am

    Holy Spit! Dude, way to rock a blog- I’m speechless! I really needed more cowbell though so if you could squeeze off a few more Farrell quotes your next post will be even better! Rock On J.

  2. Lani Anglin

    October 11, 2007 at 4:36 am

    OMG- shake & bake!!! Is that a catch phrase or epilepsy?

    🙂 I’m glad you’ve jumped on board- I’ll miss Athol though since he’s retiring. This has to be the best sign on in history- I hope you submit this to the CoRE for 10/22…

  3. Athol Kay

    October 11, 2007 at 5:11 am

    OMFG you did this on purpose didn’t you!

    You’re baiting me, you know you’re baiting me.

    (I still can’t find the email….)

  4. Benn Rosales

    October 11, 2007 at 5:23 am

    lol theres a link at the bottom right column, email me.

    Yeah, don’t submit this week J. AG is hosting so it wouldn’t look right when you took all of the categories with this post. =]

  5. Jay Thompson

    October 11, 2007 at 6:53 am

    Heh heh… I saw that on Athol’s place… we’ll see how the miserable woolen bastard weasel’s out of this one.

    If Dalton’s here, I may have to reconsider.

    And really, seven points is hardly “kicking tuchas” and OU DOES suck!

  6. Athol Kay

    October 11, 2007 at 7:07 am

    No weaseling required at all Jay. My blog has an ironclad set of Terms accessible from the footer, which explicitly say…

    “Also individual posts may be; incomplete, half right, poorly researched, may simply be a question posed as an answer, deranged or otherwise be in error as a nonexclusive list of low truthiness”

    Which is to say. I don’t give a damn what I said yesterday.

  7. Jonathan Dalton

    October 11, 2007 at 3:46 pm

    All this ruckus over little ol’ me?

    And Athol, would I really bait you? Heh heh heh heh heh heh heh heh.

  8. Athol Kay

    October 11, 2007 at 4:04 pm

    Any time I force anyone to Google search Police Academy for 25 minutes, I count it as a victory.

  9. April Groves

    October 11, 2007 at 4:06 pm

    Crap…Lani beat me to the old “shake and bake” thing.

    I’m going back to bed…Jonathan’s opener is making me feel woefully inadequate…I’ll bring sexy back tomorrow…

  10. Mariana - Springs Realty Scoop

    October 11, 2007 at 4:16 pm

    Viva La Sock Puppet …

  11. Jonathan Dalton

    October 11, 2007 at 4:43 pm

    I’ve been telling my 8-year-old for the last six months that I’m bringing sexy back. She’s got the eye roll down pat.

    (Old inside joke, kids … every year for our Daddy-Daughter dinner dance she takes me shopping for something that will hide my whale-like form. And every year I ask her if the outfit makes me look sssssexxxxy.)

  12. Jonathan Dalton

    October 11, 2007 at 4:47 pm

    Viva La Sock Puppet?

    It’s a man wearing a toupee-wearing sock!!!

  13. Mariana - Springs Realty Scoop

    October 11, 2007 at 5:05 pm

    Viva La Sock Puppet. Yes. Viva La anyone who dons their refrigerator with a car magnet.

  14. Mariana - Springs Realty Scoop

    October 11, 2007 at 5:06 pm

    … a magnet meant for a car.

  15. Athol Kay

    October 11, 2007 at 5:30 pm

    Hey it’s not fault my car is made of plastic and the magnets don’t work!

  16. Jonathan

    October 11, 2007 at 6:42 pm

    Hey Athol … if you join, we can be the Magic Man and El Diablo … unless someone beats you to being The Magic Man!

  17. Jay Thompson

    October 12, 2007 at 9:37 pm

    “Any time I force anyone to Google search Police Academy for 25 minutes, I count it as a victory.”


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Opinion Editorials

Facebook fights falsehoods (it’s a false flag)

(EDITORIAL) Facebook has chosen Reuters to monitor its site for false information, but what can one company really do, and why would Facebook only pick one?



Reuters checks facebook

So Facebook has finally taken a step to making sure fake news doesn’t get spread on it’s platform. Like many a decision from them though, they haven’t been thorough with their venture.

I am a scientifically driven person, I want facts, figures, and evidence to determine what is reality. Technology is a double edged sword in this arena; sure having a camera on every device any person can hold makes it easy to film events, but deepfakes have made even video more questionable.

Many social media platforms have tried to ban deepfakes but others have actually encouraged it. “I’ll believe it when I see it” was the rally cry for the skeptical, but now it doesn’t mean anything. Altering video in realistic ways has destroyed the credibility of the medium, we have to question even what we see with our eyes.

The expansion of the internet has created a tighter communication net for all of humanity to share, but when specific groups want to sway everyone else there isn’t a lot stopping them if they shout louder than the rest.

With the use of bots, and knowing the specifics of a group you want to sway, it’s easy to spread a lie as truth. Considering how much information is known about almost any user on any social media platform, it’s easy to pick targets that don’t question what they see online.

Facebook has been the worst offender in knowing consumer data and what they do with that data. Even if you never post anything political, they know what your affiliation is. If you want to delete that information, it’s hidden in advertising customization.

Part of me is thrilled that Facebook has decided to try and stand against this spread of misinformation, but how they pursued this goal is anything but complete and foolproof.

Reuters is the news organization that Facebook has chosen to fact check the massive amount of posts, photos, and videos that show up on their platform everyday. It makes sense to grab a news organization to verify facts compared to “alternative facts”.

A big problem I have with this is that Reuters is a company, companies exist to make money. Lies sell better than truths. Ask 2007 banks how well lies sell, ask Enron how that business plan worked out, ask the actors from Game of Thrones about that last season.

Since Reuters is a company, some other bigger company could come along, buy them, and change everything, or put in people who let things slide. Even Captain America recognizes this process. “It’s run by people with agendas, and agendas change.” This could either begin pushing falsehoods into Facebook, or destroy Reuters credibility, and bite Facebook in the ass.

If some large group wants to spread misinformation, but can’t do it themselves, why wouldn’t they go after the number one place that people share information?

I really question if Reuters can handle the amount of information flowing through Facebook, remember almost a 3rd of the whole world uses Facebook. 2.45 Billion people will be checked by 25,800 employees at Reuters? I can appreciate their effort, but they will fail.

Why did Facebook only tag one company to handle this monumental task? If you know that many people are using your platform, and such a limited number of people work for the company you tasked with guarding the users, why wouldn’t you tag a dozen companies to tackle that nigh insurmountable number of users?

I think it’s because Facebook just needs that first headline “Facebook fights falsehoods”. That one line gets spread around but the rest of the story is ignored, or not thought about at all. If there is anything Facebook has learned about the spread of fake information on their platform, it’s how to spread it better.

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Opinion Editorials

Will shopping for that luxury item actually lower your quality of life?

(EDITORIAL) Want to buy yourself a pick-me-up? Have you thought of all the ramifications of that purchase? Try to avoid splurging on it.



shopping bags

In an era of “treat-yo-self,” the urge to splurge is real. It doesn’t help that shopping – or what ends up being closer to impulse shopping – provides us with a hit of dopamine and a fleeting sense of control. Whether your life feels like it’s going downhill or you’ve just had a bad day, buying something you want (or think you want) can seem like an easy fix.

Unfortunately, it might not be so great when it comes to long-term happiness.

As you might have already guessed, purchasing new goods doesn’t fall in line with the minimalism trend that’s been sweeping the globe. Being saddled with a bunch of stuff you don’t need (and don’t even like!) is sure to make your mood dip, especially if the clutter makes it harder to concentrate. Plus, if you’ve got a real spending problem, the ache in your wallet is sure to manifest.

If that seems depressing, I’ve got even more bad news. Researchers at Harvard and Boston College have found yet another way spending can make us more unhappy in the long run: imposter syndrome. It’s that feeling you get when it seems like you’re not as good as your peers and they just haven’t caught on yet. This insecurity often arises in competitive careers, academics and, apparently, shopping.

Now, there’s one big caveat to this idea that purchasing goods will make you feel inferior: it really only applies to luxury goods. I’m talking about things like a Louis Vuitton purse, a top of the line Mercedes Benz, a cast iron skillet from Williams Sonoma (or is that one just me?). The point is, the study found that about 67% of people – regardless of their income – believed their purchase was inauthentic to their “true self.”

And this imposter syndrome even existed when the luxury items were bought on sale.

Does this mean you should avoid making a nice purchase you’ve been saving up for? Not necessarily. One researcher at Cambridge found that people were more likely to report happiness for purchases that fit their personalities. Basically, a die-hard golfer is going to enjoy a new club more than someone who bought the same golf club to try to keep up with their co-workers.

Moral of the story: maybe don’t impulse buy a fancy new Apple watch. Waiting to see if it’s something you really want can save your budget…and your overall happiness.

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Opinion Editorials

How to ask your manager for better work equipment

(EDITORIAL) Old computer got you down? Does it make your job harder? Here’s how to make a case to your manager for new equipment without budget worries.



better equipment, better work

Aside from bringing the boss coffee and donuts for a month before asking, what is an employee to do when the work equipment bites.

Let’s be frank, working on old, crappy computers with inefficient applications can make the easiest tasks a chore. Yet, what do you do? You know you need better equipment to do your job efficiently, but how to ask the boss without looking like a whiner who wants to blow the department budget.

In her “Ask A Manager” column, Alison Green says an employee should ask for better equipment if it is needed. For example, the employee in her column has to attend meetings, but has no laptop and has to take a ton of notes and then transcribe them. Green says, it’s important to make the case for the benefits of having newer or updated equipment.

The key is showing a ROI. If you know a specific computer would be a decent upgrade, give your supervisor the specific model and cost, along with the expected outcomes. In addition, it may be worth talking to someone from the IT department to see what options might be available – if you’re in a larger company.

IT professionals who commented on Green’s column made a few suggestions. Often because organizations have contracts with specific computer companies or suppliers, talking with IT about what is needed to get the job done and what options are available might make it easier to ask a manager, by saying, “I need a new computer and IT says there are a few options. Here are my three preferences.” A boss is more likely to be receptive and discuss options.

If the budget doesn’t allow for brand new equipment, there might be the option to upgrade the RAM, for example. In a “Workplace” discussion on an employee explained the boss thinks if you keep a computer clean – no added applications – and maintained it will perform for years. Respondents said, it’s important to make clear the cost-benefit of purchasing updated equipment. Completing a ROI analysis to show how much more efficiently with the work be done may also be useful. Also, explaining to a boss how much might be saved in repair costs could also help an employee get the point across.

Managers may want to take note because, according to results of a Gallup survey, when employees are asked to meet a goal but not given the necessary equipment, credibility is lost.

Gallup says that workgroups that have the most effectively managed materials and equipment tend to have better customer engagement, higher productivity, better safety records and employees that are less likely to jump ship than their peers.

And, no surprise, if a boss presents equipment and says: “Here’s what you get. Deal with it,” employees are less likely to be engaged and pleased than those employees who have a supervisor who provides some improvements and goes to bat to get better equipment when needed.

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