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Showing posts from October, 2007

Full/Self-Service and “Consume-while-Shopping”

Is there a store in Baytown that has more checkers working, than Food Town on North Main? High five to the manager of this store for "getting it"! Customer service will draw customers every time, but large business owners time and time again neglect the customer by offering self-service “fast” lanes.

Food Town on North Main usually has checkers standing in front of the line waiting on customers. And get this – they are friendly! Compare this to Wal-Mart or either Kroger location and it's easy to see why I shop at this particular Food Town.

I don't want to scan my own groceries while a cashier watches either. I don’t care if this is the wave of the future. I like the old way. I’ve had the obviously rebellious thought on more than one occasion of sending a bill to Kroger’s or Wal-Mart for my services, even if it would only pay minimum wages and no employee benefits.

How in the world is scanning my own groceries an upgrade in customer service? The conventional wisdom is…

Dedicated to Those Who Serve

This Thursday, October 25th, my son, Sgt. Nick Marshall will be honorably discharged from the United States Army after five and a half years of continuous and honorable duty. It’s been a long haul for him and all those who love and support our son.

He has represented his Country, Baytown, his family and his friends well. He is every parent’s son or daughter, who left home with little real direction, but comes home experienced, mature and full of positive goals.

Like his father and both grandfathers and great grandfathers before him, aunts, uncles and cousins, Nick has endured long lonely extended periods away from the comforts of civilization as we know it. He’s been hot, cold, dirty, exhausted, mad, laughed uncontrollably, hungry, sleepy, determined and has shared the camaraderie only G.I.’s experience when war rages around them.

My Dad rode a motorcycle through the dirt and garbage-strewn streets of Egypt, throwing handfuls of small coins to the begging children of post-WWII Cairo, a…

“Live like a King – Dine like a Pauper”

I read on CNN's web site that “Foreclosure filings across the U.S. nearly doubled last month compared with September 2006, as financially strapped homeowners already behind on mortgage payments defaulted on their loans or came closer to losing their homes to foreclosure”.

Back in 1980, anxious to move upward and provide my bride with a new home, I began the process of buying a house in a brand new subdivision here in Baytown. I sought the advice of my Pastor, the late L. S. Marcus. I laid out what I planned to do and how much it would cost me and he listened patiently. Being a Veteran, I could move in for only a buck. I really wanted the house and I had all but made the decision when I paid him a visit.

Much to my disappointment, he advised against the purchase and told me something I’ve never forgotten and it has been the basis for many a financial decision since. “If you buy this house, you will live like a king, but dine like a pauper”. I sat and stared, pleading with my ey…

City ratcheting up anti-crime efforts

By Barrett Goldsmith Baytown Sun
Published October 12, 2007

City manager Garry Brumback said law enforcement has ramped up its efforts over the 45 days and that those efforts are paying off in fewer crimes. Brumback said citizens would soon see the difference.

“There has definitely been a change, but perception is a lag indicator,” Brumback said. “We need to get people better information, and we’re working on that.”

Brumback met Wednesday night with organizers of the Baytown Concerned Citizens. Also attending were Mayor Stephen DonCarlos and Police Chief Byron Jones.

The group was formed to help coordinate with the city and neighborhood watch programs to make citizens more aware of crime issues and come up with solutions to make Baytown safer. More than 700 people are now members of BCC’s web site,, which includes a message board discussing crime and interactive maps showing the location of crimes in the city, as well as a searchable database.

Bert Marshall presented a …
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Using the Internet to prove what we want to believe

“Ten years ago, renowned Swedish scientist Dr. Celsius Fahrenheit, took a kayak trip to the Antarctic land mass, to study flora and fauna for PETA. The air trip was a bust, as all he found was flotsam- jetsam plants and that, in abundance, as the red tide was in. Bagging up what he could, he was able to trade it to the Inuit Eskimos for Atwater Prairie chickens, which are raised as a cash crop.

“If only we had been in the Arctic, where little Emperor penguin-itos are in abundance we could have harvested a number of the tasty “chickens” for food, but instead, we were forced to subsist on polar bear liver, as it is the only safe part of the polar bear for humans”.

Antarctica is the second largest continent in all three hemispheres and is expanding every year, by about 4000 miles due to Global warming, which Al Gore discovered. Hugo Chavez, of the Bolivian government, owns most of the expanding land mass, and is causing a world-wide outrage, by introducing logging. Mr. Chavez is plan…