We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
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Tuesday, April 23. 2013
Between a small handful of very appreciated donations, an unexpected check from the stock broker (one of the stocks I sold last summer had been held up in a court case) and getting a small retainer to construct a web site for a soon-to-be local businessman, I could stay online for now, but I'm worried that I'll be right back to square one in a couple of months, albeit this time with a large outstanding debt to the hospital that I'll have trouble paying.
Put another way, right now I feel great mentally but poor physically. Assuming they find out what's wrong, I'll then feel great physically but poor mentally!
Pic: Artist's concept of Doc's life right now
If I'm going to suspend the Internet service, I have to call them before 6 pm today, so I'll think about it. Any thoughts on your part are welcome.
On the subject (your thoughts), am I wrong in thinking there's absolutely no way to make money online outside of direct involvement, like webmastering? I spent half a day investigating all of the "5 Ways To Make Money Online!" articles out there a while back and not one of them is actually viable. I was thinking there might be a few things around, like the incredibly boring job of 'data input' (transferring data from paper or electronic forms into a database program), but I couldn't even find that. If anyone has any thoughts on the subject, I'd be interested.
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I'm an oncology nurse, so I understand the high cost of treatments. I also understand your desire to pay "your own way". I would suggest that you contact the doctor and see if their is a social worker that can help you.
In our clinic we have a social worker and 2 financial folks working on behalf of the patient. These folks are scouring the industry looking for any monies that might be available. You would be surprised at the amount of money that companies have set aside to help patients with co-pays, deductibles, and living expenses. One of the financial folks actually found a source where patients can get pre-loaded Visa cards for expenses like gas, food or lodging. She found $1.7 million! Per quarter!
And you can also try the tried and true method of paying a small amount each month. Speak with the financial folks at your doctors office before you make a decision.
Thanks for the feedback. I'm now good buddies with the lady who runs the financial end of the Miami hospital and they'll let me pile up a good-sized bill as long as I can meet their minimum monthly payment. She hasn't used the term "social worker", but I'll ask her about that the next time I'm up there.
Nothing tangible to offer, only the intense good will reading you has generated over the years. Hang in there, partner.
Hey Doc, cancel the services and take a sabbatical for awhile. Connect to free services via free wifi if possible when you can. You may find a new "normal" and routine in doing so. We will wait. You shouldn't. Some things are just more important at times. Best of luck and God bless.
Good thoughts. Actually, the first thing I did when I moved here and realized I was having wireless problems was scoot over to Office Depot and buy a D-Link wi-fi adapter. A small handful of sites popped up, but all encrypted. Back went the wi-fi adapter and that's when I started hunting seriously and ended up where I am.
You can try Amazon's Mechanical Turk to make a little money. And I do mean a little money. The pay is low, but it's more than just surfing or playing Pogo games.
Also, several years Inc. Magazine had an article on constructing a WiFi antenna that would receive from many miles away. Might be interesting for you to poke around in that area and see if you can pick up more spots.
I spent a half an hour on Mechanical Turk back when I was investigating this stuff, trying in vain to understand why anyone would work for $0.01 a project. I'll give it another look if anyone can provide an example where it actually made someone some money.
"a WiFi antenna that would receive from many miles away."
That looks like a technical oxymoron. :)
Unfortunately, I have an aversion to doing illegal things. Just call me old-fashioned. I only tried it before out of curiosity. There might have been a neighbor using it where we could split the monthly rate, but t'wasn't to be.
Re: Mechanical Turk, you want to sort options with the best paying first.
Money is not ever great, but it is better than the $0.01 payments. Those are mostly used to get your eligibility up.
Understood about the antenna, and yeah I appreciate that there are ethical considerations. (You might however, find a friend who is willing to let you tap into his, if you can get the reception).
Well, break it down.
(1) Making your money independently via the Internet - well, that's a problem. There are a of smart computer techs out there who got there first. And frankly, the various online services already have tech support - albeit in Mumbai or Islamabad or some second world location. So that's an issue.
(2) Local computer savvy techs are in demand - but that would require you to judge your local need, set up a business plan of sorts, be able to travel within an hour or so of your location, etc. The guy who helps me with my computer stuff locally is a Deputy Sheriff who has this small Computer MD business on the side. It will be his full time business once he retires (another five years), but for now he's building up a customer base and advertising his services.
(3) It may just be that you're limiting yourself by location - you're in the Keys as I understand it - is there that much business there to keep you busy. Not trying to be a smart ass here, but apparently that is a problem.
(4) You have to have the high speed connection if you want to work from home, yet you can't afford the high speed connection given the circumstances.
(5) Perhaps the most important issue of all - you have to do what is right for you and at the moment, your health is the major issue. Given that you are on the low side regarding cash flow, I would suggest that you ask for help from one of the hospital social workers who may be able to plug you into one of several services that help folks with limited incomes obtain the services you need.
Sadly, if that requires you to drop your connection and check in from a library for a while, well that's how it has to go.
Lastly, and do not take offense at this, everybody needs help from time-to-time. I know for me, it was a tough road for a while until I got my act together (read staying sober and not abusing amphetamines), but there were a lot of people along the way who helped me get there - starting with my lovely bride who personally paid for rehab and the rehab people who discounted the services to help and the doctors/therapists who took minimum payments to help - I could keep on going. But eventually, this help put me in the place where I currently and I'm not ashamed to admit it - I couldn't have done it on my own.
So for what it is worth, my advice is to take care of your health issues first, seek out help from those who can provide it, get healthy and start over again.
Sometimes that's all you can do.
The location, indeed, is one of the larger problems, simply because there aren't many residents, which means there aren't that many people who need computer or web help. The nearest big city, Miami, is about two hours away.
And, oddly, there isn't any hiring of 'seasonal' help here. It's one of the few official 'tourist attractions' that doesn't have a 'busy season'. It's bustling in the winter because of all of the snowbirds and bustling in the summer because of the world-class diving and snorkeling.
But it'll work out, and thanks for the good advice.
PS: I've switched my service over the Bluehost on your recommendation. The URL for swsports is just a landing spot now - a home so that I can use my own email addresses and make up funny user names when I buy stuff from Amazon and eBay. I also have about twenty fake Facebook accounts because I like to occasionally play their games and I don't want to bother my friends with the constant barrage of "Tom gained level 3,405 on Angry Birds Star Wars" posts.
Anyway, if it will help you, your welcome to park you domain with me - I don't know how all that works, but I'm sure you do so if you want, or need, to use my internet space I'll be glad to help you out.
Thanks, will think about it. If you ever get a for-real blog or web site up, lemme know and I'll proceed to slice & dice it, using dynamite and C-4 to expose its sordid underbelly and expose to the light of day the one, true gem that resides deep inside.
What are friends for?
It's time that management at Maggie's bites the bullet and goes the Instapundit route. Simple Amazon affiliate link at the top, and an occasional short post pimping something you found there that you genuinely like and/or use. This blog has an Aelxa rank near the 100k mark worldwide. That's some little bit of traffic, and a pretty dang loyal core of regular readers. It may not be ginormous cash flow, but it would be SOME cash flow.
I don't think anybody begrudges Prof. Reynolds the need to support his bad habits like eating and wearing shoes, nor would they begrudge Maggies for the same reason. In fact, before I do my shopping at Amazon (quite a lot of it actually), I always make sure to go to his blog first and click through. He provides me value, nearly every day, so why shouldn't I?
And frankly, anybody who would begrudge him, or you, making a buck while providing value? The hell with em.
I agree with you in principle, and certainly don't begrudge Instapundit and PJ Media and Hot Air and all the rest for whatever bucks they can pull in, but Maggie's is 'backwater' in every sense of the word. There aren't any rules, and the bloggers range from posting every day (Bird Dog), to almost every day (NJ, Barrie, me), to occasionally (Dr. B, Wynnie), to almost never (Cap'n Tom, Bulldog, Roger), so it'd be a total mess trying to figure out the percentages.
And, of course, the problem there is the same one the aforementioned sites have; once money enters the picture, then you want to post all of the time -- regardless of whether or not what you're posting about is worthwhile.
But it's a fun thought. Does Amazon have a Houses section? Heh.
re: "the problem is"... in the problem is the solution.My favorite movie quote, all time, bar none:
“It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it. The hard is what makes it great."
Jimmy Dugan in 'A League Of Their Own'
I'm just one guy. But I spent roughly $300 at Amazon last month. Insty made somewhere between $25 and $50-- it was little stuff, vitamins, Kindle books, misc. doodads-- and it cost me not one cent extra. I'm OK with that. But I wouldn't pay for a subscription to his site. Seems weird even as I write it, but it's true.
So, the fact that it's hard-- so what? Maggies mgmt. is bright enough. Figure it out...
Ah, back when Madonna was actually a fun person.
And I actually gave your suggestion some thought. I first went over to Amazon to see if they had a 'Realty' section (they don't), then did a search for "diamond jewelry", viewing it from "high price to low".
My thought was, there's no reason I couldn't put Amazon affiliate links in my own posts, but, rather than appear greedy and dick around with petty stuff, I thought I'd only list houses, diamond jewelry and Cadillacs. I may only get one sale a month, but the commission would be awesome!
Do me a favor and send me an email addy I can use -I'm going to take you up on that for a blog.
I would be thrilled to go through an Amazon portal here. Honestly, I look for bloggers who have one up who aren't Reynolds or Althouse who, honestly, don't need the money. (Not that they aren't earning it, but as I'm broke-ass myself, I like to help other broke-ass people when I make my piddly little $25 Amazon purchases).
Consultant on setting up encrypted email?
How good are you with linux and webhosting stuff:
If you look at www.dice.com and craiglist you can find telecommute positions that might get you what you want.
Do you read James Taranto's 'Best of the Web Today'? This is a candidate for his 'News of the Tautological' department:
"As it is a telecommuting position, you must be able to work from home."
It looks interesting, and thanks for the thought, but I know less than zip about Linux and I only know Windows inside-out from an OS point of view, not the vaunted MSSQL and the like.
Have you tried all variations of Wi-Fi, including hooking one up from scratch? Anything's gotta beat $120/mo. Sheesh.
Anyways, I hope you stick around. You're the only one who has decent movie reviews!
P.S. "The Replacements" was terrific. Just as your review clip predicted!
Ah, yes, The Replacements.
You have to admit, they just don't write movie reviews like that anymore.