Dave Richards for June 20th…………
--This week, it's all about 'clubs', folks............
First, a reminder about our beloved Le Club Par-X. The members of the Par-X Club have a long tradition of using their hall and kitchen to help individuals and other organizations to raise money for worthy causes. Organizations we all support like Autumnfest and The Milk Fund have benefitted from the untold generosity of the members of Par-X who get up early on a Sunday morning and prepare a full breakfast complete with eggs any style, meat and beans which are so much favored by the locals that people come in droves to every Par-X breakfast.
Well now, the Par-X will have an event this Friday evening to raise money to keep their hall in top condition so they can continue to help others. It’s a chowder and clam cake supper and the chef will be none other than Mickey G. operating out of his famous mobile clam shack. Your choice of red or white chowder and those yummy clam cakes will be available to eat there at the Par-X or take home with you. And the proceeds help a swell group of people who always help others when asked. I hope you’ll remember to join me this Friday and be there to help these fine people help themselves.
--Also, this weekend is the weekend for the largest event in the U.S. for home amateur radio enthusiasts, called HAMs. It called “Field Day”. This weekend amateurs will set up temporary transmitting and receiving stations in fields and open areas all around the country as they invite the licensed and non-licensed alike to come out “open house style” and see what the hobby is all about.
Our local HAM club, the Blackstone Valley Amateur Radio Club, will be set up on the grounds of the former Chopmist Hill Inn on Chopmist Hill Road in Scituate, now home of the Scituate Senior Center. If you go, you’ll see examples of the original social media, HAM radio, and if you want you’ll get the chance to ‘key-up’ and talk to others on a special radio set up for guests-only.
Amateur radio operators are an important part of our nation’s plan for safety in the event of natural or man-made disasters because, unlike the Internet, which is vulnerable to attacks and downed lines, individual amateur radio operators continue to operate in the worst of conditions. And they relay vital information in times of true need.
Check them out at the Field Day Event at the Scituate Senior Center, on Route 102, just south of the intersection with Route 6. I think you’ll be impressed. And what you see just might spark your own interest, or the interest of a young person you bring along.
--I think we all have things which bother us disproportionately. These are the little things which don’t seem to bother others, but which “push OUR buttons”. One of them for me is these so-called “loyalty clubs” which are all the rage right now.
I don’t like people I don’t know compiling and using my personal information and buying habits and using them to ‘market’ me. We’ve all heard about the grandma and grandpa who are bombarded with ads for baby formula and other items for newborns simply because they once bought a box of disposable diapers for a young family member and used their ‘store club’ key chain card.
What is maddening to me is that people by and large are willing to sell this information about themselves to large corporations to use with no controls and for literally pennies, sometimes. I take a different view. Oh, I know that nobody lives anonymously anymore. In the 21st Century it is not only possible but indeed likely that a stranger can know things about me that I am not aware of myself. But to simply give corporations information they can use to ‘market’ you is completely avoidable in my mind. At least it should be. Unfortunately there is a financial penalty today for choosing to keep your privacy, and I think this is wrong.
You see, the way I look at it is the whole concept is a dishonest manipulation of customers for profit. If a store can afford to sell me a pound of grapes for $2.69, then they should just sell it to me and everyone for $2.69. They should not mark-up the same pound of grapes to $2.99 a pound simply because a customer didn’t join their store club and give them permission to track their private buying habits and probably also share the data for cash with other companies for profit.
The dishonesty of this system is obvious to me. Under disguise of being a customer’s ‘friend’ and caring so much about their ‘friend’ that they will sell items to them for less, the stores keep the prices where they want them for their ‘friends’ but then take the opportunity to jack up the prices to gouge everyone who’s not a ‘friend’. I have a deep-seated problem with that, and I refuse to participate. Let’s face it, no store can sell at a loss, not even to a ‘friend’.
Our Rhode Island General Assembly is busy every year passing laws for special interests. How about they pass a law to stop this method of price gouging and information mining? I say there should be one fair price for everyone!
--That’s what I think. What do you think? Comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org or postal mail to Dave Richards, WOON Radio, 985 Park Avenue, Woonsocket, RI 02895-6332.
Thanks for reading!