Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Go live under a rock

(c) 2016 P. Lynne Designs

Note:  This is my status on Facebook.  I am not apologizing for my opinions, because, the opinions of a certain group of people are the anti-teachings of Jesus.   Here goes.

I about to stick my foot in my mouth. I have been reading all these comments about #boycottTarget, and I have to say this: you might as well live in a cave and cut off communication from the world. I do not boycott, unless, it directly affects me. I do not care what a person does behind the wall of a stall in a bathroom. why? because I go in do my business, and unless a woman is screaming in agony. I check all stalls before I enter, and if something is not right, I leave, period.
When I was little, my mom went into the public bathroom with me.  She made sure that no one was there to harm me. She stayed there until I was finished, and we left together. If it was my brother, he went to the ladies’ bathroom, until he was old enough, then either my father went with him and stayed, or if he was with my mom, she stood at the entrance of the men's bathroom until he came out.
Jesus taught us all to love one another, that includes anyone who is different than us. Why should you care what a person's sexual orientation is in the first place? Are you being hit on by anyone who is in the LGBT community? if so, you have a mouth, tell them "no, you are not interested, just like you would tell a heterosexual.
What a person does behind closed doors is their business and theirs alone. STOP TRYING TO DO GOD'S JOB BY BOYCOTTING. Let God take care of those people. You do not want your children exposed to them. You would be surprised how many in the LGBT community your child is exposed to in the first place. If you want to boycott anyone, stop reading AFA articles. They are anti-tolerant of anyone different than them. I am not listening to them. in fact, I never listened to them, because they have articles that are not backed by God's Word, and sprouting off one bible verse does not make it Christian based.
So, this has turned into a mini blog post. unfriend me if you did not like what I said. if someone wants you in a perverted way, they do not need a law to prevent them from going into women's bathroom Just scream for security, or better yet, just leave if you feel unsafe.

I have nothing more to say about my views, and I did not say it to get a pat on the back from the LGBT community, or a “how dare you say that, because, you are a Christian” sneer.  We all have opinions, and it is our job to teach.   I am teaching you to tolerate and rather you turn this controversy into a teachable moment is up to you.  I still feel the same way about my views on homosexuality, but I also feel that I cannot tell them what they are doing is wrong or right.  They are not hitting on me, and I know better as a soon to be a mother and current aunty to teach any child what to do if a stranger approach them, who to get in contact with, and to tell me right away if something is not right with their current situation.  
I put the AFA on the same level as PETA.  They mean well but go way to far in their non-tolerance of people.  It is OK to have views, such as making people aware of cruelty to animals, and making bathrooms safe for women and children.  I am all for that, and much, much more.  I am also against cruelty towards Black people,Christians, and women, abuse of any form, equal education for all children at economic levels and cultures, equal housing, and equal pay for all.  The only thing you will not see me do ever is get in a protest line, because, I feel I can protest in other ways.  I like rallies, which is sort of like a protest, but, I think rallies are more peaceful than a full on, walking down the street, with a possibility of a can of tear gas in your face by the local law enforcement type of protest.

I would love to know what you think.  Has this #boycottTarget movement gone too far, just right, or you do not care either way?  I will not be offended, and no spamming, please.  

Sunday, April 24, 2016


(c) 2016 P.Lynne Designs
I often speak about copyrights and ownership on this blog, especially when it comes to images you decide to download and use on your blog or website to make the site prettier, stately, and for drawing traffic.  The correct way of getting to use a particular image on your blog or website is to simply write the person who took the picture in the first place, introduce yourself, and say something like, “Hi, my name is Patricia Logan, and I am a blogger of MAL blog.  I noticed that you have taken a picture of x, I would love to use it in my soon to be released blog post about blogging, which I think your image would go perfectly with it.”  next explain that you always give credit to the person who takes the picture.   If the person says, “sure, thank you for asking”.  No problem.  If the person says, “I charge a small fee for the use of my images.”  Simply ask what that fee is, and determine at that time how valuable is the picture is worth to you. If the person says no, or the price is too high, kindly thank the person, and move on.  It is that simple, right? Not so fast.
A lot of times, people do not think of the time and effort for that photographer takes to find the perfect moment, mood, and angle for that photo session.  I really had to think about it in the past few months, because, I have a few friends who are photographers, and I recently in the past year or so have been dabbling in the art of photography myself.  I do not have all the filters.  In fact, it is just me, my phone or my Ipad, and the subject.  I also have Photoshop and Lightroom on my desktop.  I had a small camera in the past that I absolutely loved, which was an HP point and shot camera.  It is broken from years of use. The last place I took photos was at Disneyland, around San Diego/Los Angeles/San Bernardino/Hollywood, CA, as well as Kansas, Nebraska, Illinois, and Indiana.  That was 2007. After that, it was cameras inside of smartphones and tablets.  I really miss the feel of a real camera, and cameras these days’ upload to YouTube just like smartphones and tablets do. If I can find one that is within my budget of $100-$250 but works like it is in the $500-$850 range, I will be happy. 
Anyway, back to copyrights and ownership….
The same thing about copyright and ownership can be said about any posts written, interviews given, videos, or any music download onto Itunes or Spotify music players.  I recently had a reminder of downloaded music with Spotify.  I am a huge Michael Jackson and Prince Fan, I listen to their music all the time, and today, just like I did with Michael and Whitney Houston when they died, I wanted to drown myself into Prince’s music.  I only found a few pieces of his music on Spotify, and on Pandora. 
I remembered reading that he was heavily against sites like these, because if a person listens to the music without paying to download it (and you don’t if you have Spotify free, I have the premium app), the artist does not get paid the royalties that they deserve.  I think according to Prince, an artist gets maybe $.02 of that money, and he thought artists needed to be paid more money.  This is the reason why more musicians do not allow sites like Spotify to have their music.
Anyway, later on, I was thinking what are his lawyers going to do with any unpublished music, which is now put on the backburner permanently, because of Prince’s death today.  I really did not think the executors and overseers handled Michael Jackson’s estate very well, due to all of the unpublished music Michael had, and they did not allow his family to have a say in it at all.  if that was the case, the family would have decided when that last album would have been released, if at all. To me, it was an unfinished album, and Michael was just a pawn for the producers to get what they wanted.  I do not think any of the album money went towards his mother nor his children.
I wanted to see once again how unfinished that album felt, so I went to the Spotify app on my desktop to pull it up, and they got rid of the music.   I am not protesting, but I think Michael’s family or executors must have threatened to take them to court on the album.  
So the moral of the story is, you do not own a single copy of the music on Spotify, Pandora, or Itunes, none of it.  It is not yours, and it never was yours to begin with, you are just borrowing a copy of that song, and Spotify (or whatever site you are listening to music on) has the right to pull that piece of music whenever the artist or executors of their estate pull out the “Sue” card for illegally playing their music.  
Will I stop using Spotify, Itunes, or Pandora?  No, but I am now more aware that I do not own a copy of the remaining music I listen to.  I am merely borrowing it, and I do not have the right to share it with someone else. 

If you want any type of media, such as music or images, and are very creative, take your own photos (unless noted, most of my photos now have my P. Lynne Designs copyright on it), design it, compose it, or pay someone to do it for you.  If you do the latter, do not forget to give them credit for it.  For $5, you can hire someone from Fiverr to do it for you.   

P.S.... RIP Prince, we will miss you, and thank you for offering your talent to the world

Saturday, April 23, 2016

It is a Dog eat Dog World. A word on writing, niche, and business growth.

Not what you think.  Two months ago, nephew #1’s dog had puppies.  Strype has 2 sons, 5 daughters.  Some of the names are:  Cayman, Duchess, Princess, Penelope or Venelope (not sure what niece (7) named her), not sure with the other names are.  Great nephew called them all Scripy (he is 14 months, and trying to say Strype’s name, and cannot say the other names). 
I met all puppies but 2 of them yesterday.  When I first met Strype, she was about the size these new little ones were.  I was also glad she was named for the stripe down her nose, and a great tribute to a previously-owned dog also named Stripe.  We had this Stripe, who was a Beagle mixed with German Shepard for 18 years.  He was family, not saying that Strype and the puppies are not part of our family.  I am a dog lover (more dog than cat).  Other family dogs were PJ (Puppy Junior) a Beagle, who lived with us only a few months, and Victoria, a German Shepard, who lived with us for 4 years in California.   All of them resided with my parents.  I personally have not owned any dogs in my home. 
Now you are wondering what do dogs and puppies have to do with writing.  Dogs are exciting to watch, and if you notice how they react to something new, they get excited, and they are excited about everything, and they want to know about that new thing to the point knocking over anything that gets in the way.  Today, I was at parent’s house, and I went outside to the dogs.  Strype jumped all over me, while Cayman, Duchess, and a puppy’s name I could not remember was grabbing and pulling at my left pant leg.  I never had that experience since Victoria kept knocking me over when I was 4 (she was much taller than me standing up on two legs).  I am sure part of Strype’s jumping were to make sure her puppies are safe from my feet, (she I also a little jealous) while the puppies wanted something to chew on (they are teething after all).  Princess wanted to do her own thing by trying to climb onto the deck through an opening in the railing, which she failed at and gave up.
As new writers, we are excited when anything new comes our way.  We jump at the chance to get noticed and we chew and claw our way to the top.  That goes for Freelancing as well as Journalism.  As we get older in our craft, new people come in and feel the same way.  We fight our way to stay at the top of our game.  For freelancers, client come to see the “pick of the litter” writers, and when they find one they like, it is a match made in heaven or not.  Sometimes, we are like Princess, who finds a different way of getting to where she is want to go, by different means.  Instead of climbing the one step to get onto the deck, Princess chose to go between the wood bars.  As proven, you can either fail and give up, or try something different another day.
If you try doing it your way, just like Princess, do not give up.  In fact, it that does not help, try yet a different way but never sell yourself short.  There are many different ways to achieve the same end goal.  This is how human babies learn to do things when no one is helping them.  It does not have to be the traditional method.
Also, be like the puppies who were chewing at the leg of my pants.  This represents a person who is thirsty for knowledge.  Always want to learn more.  Never settle for less. “The more you learn, the more you know.  The more you know, the more you grow.”  This was a quote I heard in my teens.  This talks about wisdom and knowledge. 
For instance, I am a crafter.  I have talked about it several times on this blog, as well as other blogs.  What if I learned to only glue paper to another surface?  That may be fine, but if I want to teach someone or write about crafting, I can only get so far with just the gluing part.  That does not get very far into the process.  In order to do that, I had to learn how to use tools, different techniques with the appropriate tools and gluing, and even go outside that crafting area to learn how to teach a crafting technique or writing techniques in order to write about it.  sure that last part I should have learned starting in Elementary school and through my parents, but it also took a lot of practice and hard work to get to this point in my life.  This is how most blog posts are born.  Another subject for another post.
So the conclusion of this thing called writing is simple:
1.       Do find a niche.  Be excite about that niche, because, it will come through in your writing.  One tip:  If the post does not feel right, you will know it.  You have a choice to change it or write something else.
2.      Be alert.  There will always people who have started writing before you and people who will start writing after you.
3.      Do not stay in one place.  Always learn from your niche, hobby, and new ways to get your point across.  Always be prepared to teach and to be teachable.  Rules, techniques, and time are always changing.
4.      Find new ways to do something new and different.  It goes back to #2 and 3.
If you are not willing to change with the time, you will not grow in writing and in your niche.  If you do not grow in your niche and business, you will not increase in income nor influence someone else whose life you may not get to change.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

I know you mean well, but don’t – Advice gone wrong

Photo by P. Lynne Designs
(c) 2016 
I have been given much friendly advice, such as “look before crossing the street”, “Always say please and thank you”, and my personal favorite, “do not speak unless being spoken to” if there is an “A” and “B” conversation.  It has made things easier for me in life, and in the case of the “Do not speak unless being spoken to”, it has allowed me from being popped in the mouth on many occasions. 
The examples I have given you were given to me in my youth by my parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and assorted older adults, and I wish that today’s generation would take it to heart.  Often times, today’s generation tends to take on this, “I know more than you” or “You are behind the times, so get with it” attitude, until I have no words for it.
Advice, when given correctly, can be very helpful, but be very careful of the words that come out of your mouth, because advice, when given incorrectly, can also be very hurtful.
I am sure by now, if you are on social media, have seen the story of a Florida man. who went into a St. Augustine, Florida Starbucks to get coffee.   If you do not know, view the video here.   Basically put, he ordered a Grand White Mocha coffee.  This is my favorite go to coffee flavor at Starbucks.  I usually order a tall, white Chocolate Mocha with soy and very little whip.  It gives me the fix I need (chocolate, caffeine, love).  Anyway, when he received the coffee, the note on the receipt said, “Diabetics Here I Come”.  The man was not very happy with it at all.  He said that it reminded him of his two sisters, who had been suffering since the 2nd and 3rd grades.
He immediately returned it with a note saying, “My 2 sisters suffer from diabetics, not funny.”  Advice gone wrong. 
First off, the barista is there to do one job, and one job only; take orders, and serve the orders. They have gone beyond the basic customer service, and Starbucks did not hire them to be health consultants.  Even if they are studying to be a health practitioner (which I hope they are), it is not their job to be the health police at Starbucks.   Customers do not come in to be babysat on.  They come to relax in the moment.
Second, when you give advice like that, it comes off rude.  That barista may have been health conscious, but then I have to question the reason why they are working there in the first place when a health food store or restaurant would be more suited for them.  You do not know how a person will take the advice, nor what the situation is like in their life. 
Third, the customer could have taken this advice in one of two ways; he could have talked to the manager or to the barista serving the coffee, instead of writing the note.   Obviously, he notified the news after he wrote the note, or Starbucks headquarters would not have commented on the story in the first place.  Sometimes, the media is not the best place to air disagreements.  One thing to note:  The customer could have also thanked the barista for the reminder, and gone about his day.  There are more ways of solving this then using the note method.  Some good and some bad.
Overall, the advice I would give this barista:  Don’t.  Starbucks is not made for that kind of conversation.  You can talk when you get home, about the guy who was one step away from a diabetic coma with your friends and co-workers.  Come in tomorrow with your head held high, and ready to take in the next customer, who in your eyes, is one step away from a diabetic coma, or quit, and work for a health food store or restaurant.  Let customers worry about their own health.  That is what they pay doctors, nurses, and other health people for.  You never know, the customer you sold that coffee to may come in every 6 months for a treat, and that day was your lucky day. 

This is a lesson all of us could use.  I love this line from Disney’s Bambi: “If you cannot say nothing nice, don’t say it at all.”  May I add, “That includes giving advice.”