Wednesday, May 30, 2007

May 30, 2007, Dear CBS

Dear CBS:
Please be aware that, since the cancellation of Jericho, I have not watched any of your replacement programming on Wednesday nights. Nor is it likely that I will watch anything on your network for a long time.


Friday, May 25, 2007

May 25, 2007, Brass Armadillo

Well, my auctions ended at Yahoo today with no sales. I will not be listing with that company again.
I have rented a booth space at the Brass Armadillo in Sharonville, Ohio, north of Cincinnati. The street address is 10132 Business Center Drive, and I am in space 153, if you are interested in seeing what I have for sale.
These are the items I took with me tonight to place in the booth. I hope that the BA will get a lot of holiday weekend traffic.

1980 Springfield High Starr NRFB, listed for $22.00
1981 Skipper #1952 Tennis Everyone NRFP, listed for $7.00
1988 Hot Looks Fashion Jewelry Set NRFB, listed for $8.50
1988 Kenner Always Sisters Blair MIB, listed for $45.00
1988 Kenner Always Sisters Lauren MIB, listed for $45.00
1988 Kenner Always Sisters Vanessa MIB, listed for $45.00
1989 Cool Times Teresa NRFB, listed for $22.00
1989 High School Jazzie NRFB, listed for $20.00
1990 Tyco Arista NRFB, listed for $18.00
1991 Barbie trading cards poster NRFP, listed for $5.00
1991 Kmart Pretty Teen NRFB, listed for $12.00
1992 Kenner Evening Gown Blair NRFB, listed for $23.00
1992 Kenner Talent Show Raquel NRFB, listed for $15.00
1995 Pocahontas trading cards NRFP, listed for $3.00
1997 Galoob Czar Nicholas NRFB, listed for $24.00
1997 Galoob Together in Paris Anastasia NRFB, listed for $22.00
1999 Beyond Pink Christie NRFB, listed for $22.00
1999 Beyond Pink Teresa NRFB, listed for $22.00
1999 Target Changin’ Seasons clothing gift set NRFB, listed for $19.00

Monday, May 21, 2007

May 21, 2007, complaints about Nielsens

The more I think about the cancellation of Jericho, and every other show I watched that lasted one season or less, I am convinced that the Nielsens are skewed.

I don't have digital TV (although I know I'll need to invest in a new set soon), premium cable or Tivo. My Mac computer is 5 years old and I just learned that it doesn't have enough memory for me to even invest in additional Mac upgrade software to install it. So I don't have the computer equipment to download TV shows off the Internet, nor do I feel the need to. I almost always watch a program "live" unless I have other plans, at which point I set my old-fashioned VCR to do the work. Nor do I care that I don't have this equipment.

Only once did I tape Jericho the entire time it was on this past season, and I also think I did it once for Ugly Betty. Other than that, all I've taped is older stuff that aired during weekdays when I was at work or old movies overnight.

There have been only a few times in my life that I watched what was at the top of Nielsen ratings. I'm 46, which means that I was born in 1961 and so I am older than most of the Jericho Internet posters. Although I remember watching morning and afternoon children's programs in the 1960s, I didn't start watching prime time on a regular basis until I started fourth grade, which was in 1970. I vividly remember watching The Brady Bunch and The Partridge Family when they originally aired after that. Yet, ironically, most people don't realize that those two shows were never in the Top 10. They hung around longer because there were so few options for TV 37 years ago.

These are the highly rated programs that I watched when they first aired:
From the 70s:
Roots and Roots II
The TV debuts of Gone With the Wind, The Sound of Music, The Poseidon Adventure, Jaws and Earthquake (remember, they had never appeared before on the small screen because there was no media for that)
The Mary Tyler Moore finale
The first few seasons of The Waltons and Little House on the Prairie
I didn't watch All in the Family, because both my mother and I hated the annoying characters. I am too young to have watched Brian's Song and the finale of The Fugitive when they aired originally. I only have vague memories of the Apollo programs.

From the 80s:
The MASH finale
The Day After
Almost all of St. Elsewhere and Family Ties
I didn't watch Dallas, Dynasty, The Cosby Show, etc.--they simply were not to my taste.

By the 90s most everyone had acquired cable and VCRs, so viewing got more fragmented. I didn't watch Friends, Seinfeld, ER, etc.--again, they were not to my taste.

As for the millennium, well, I go to the movies pretty often. There have been only a few shows in the past seven years that I've watched that made it past a second season, and that is a discussion for another day.

I have been convinced for years that the folks chosen for Nielsen ratings boxes are planned in advance. As you can see, almost never in my entire life have my viewing choices matched that of the Nielsens. I think that whoever or whoevers operate the company choose persons/families in advance that it thinks will like the shows that its employees and managers personally like. Or the networks pay the Nielsens to choose families that watch program that the networks themselves want to succeed.

I do remember one week in 1969? 1970? when my mother got a little calendar in the mail that I think was from Nielsen. It asked her to monitor all the shows that we watched in a week--my dad, my mom, me and my two younger sisters. I wonder if her list at the end of the week matched up with what everyone else who received a calendar that week. I also remember her getting paid maybe a dollar to fill it out. And I wonder if Nielsen still does the temporary weekly calendars.

I know this sounds very paranoid/conspiracy theory, but it has been going on far too long to be a coincidence. After 35-plus years of reading about the Nielsens, I think I'm a pretty good example of the person whom Nielsen chooses to ignore.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

May 18, 2007, Yahoo auctions

These are the items I have for sale this week on Yahoo.
Ideal Velvet jeans and shoes 2101852356
1999 Mattel Rosie O'Donnell doll 210187696

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

May 15, 2007, Jericho's cancellation

Man, I'm batting a 1,000 here, in two different ways.
Jericho was cancelled today. I don't have much luck with post-apocalyptic or PA-like premise shows. Most of them never get their situation concluded. Jericho's in good company: Lost in Space, Battlestar Galactica (the one, the only, the original, my all-time favorite TV series), V, Surface and the one I have a vague memory of watching, The New People, all got cancelled before their storylines ended. I've learned over the years that it's not just me that's left wondering; quite often the cast members themselves are bothered by it. The only similar show I've ever seen that got its story finished was Star Trek: Voyager. You will notice that every show I've listed was panned by the critics and all of them are looked upon contemptously by many contemporary snarky younger viewers. The reasons I liked the shows are the same reasons they hate them: because the characters for the most part are nice and friendly to each other and are at least somewhat idealistic.
Now, as for the other reason I'm batting a thousand. My TV viewing schedule last fall looked like this:
Sunday, 10 p.m., ABC, Brothers & Sisters, which I enjoyed at first but then the characters got too confusing to keep track of and the storyline just got too weird. I've not been watching it regularly since then because I've lost a bit of interest.
Tuesday, 9 p.m., Fox, House. This season, the characters and their soap opera relationships, the "who's sleeping with whom" and the fact that the characters were looking like they weren't bathing regularly took precedence over the weird diseases. Again, I've lost interest.
Wednesday, 8 p.m., CBS, Jericho. The best PA series I've seen since my beloved Galactica. Cancelled. Wednesday, 9 p.m., ABC, Lost. The first season was one of the neatest program I'd ever seen. The second season killed off too many of the interesting original characters and brought in too many new boring ones. The first half of the third season managed to be both sickeningly violent and boring at the same time. I didn't return when it returned from its hiatus, and I never will. 10 p.m., CBS, CSI: NY. The only one of the CSI/Law & Order shows I've ever seen. I have a wimpy stomach and don't give a damn about cop shows and the only reason I watched this one was because I like Gary Sinise. But again, this season got too soapy and boring and the subject matter was sometimes just out-and-out gross.
Thursday, 10 p.m., ABC, Six Degrees. My sister and I both really liked this show, but it got put on hiatus, returned for two episodes, and then got cancelled. I'm not watching anything in its place.
Various times, ABC, Men in Trees. Was cute at first, then got raunchy and I started to lose interest.
Oh, and last fall ABC Family showed Everwood reruns at 6 p.m. weeknights. It was wonderful to see the series again and I taped the second, third and fourth seasons. But as soon as the series got through its first run, Fam discontinued it. I haven't watched Fam since.
The only bright spot this spring has been Ion's airings at 6 p.m. Sundays of the reruns of Galactica. Sometimes the highlight of my week.
No wonder I go to the movies so often....

Sunday, May 13, 2007

May 13, 2007, auctions

I'm slowly scaling back the items I am listing on Yahoo. Last week's items hardly even had anybody looking. When I am set up at Brass Armadillo I will tell you more about that.
These are the two items I have for sale this week.
1990s Grolier Barbie backpack 211452680
1989 Hasbro Maxie Freshly Gathered Floral 211452217.
This is the link. If it doesn't work, you can try copying and pasting.

Saturday, May 5, 2007

May 5, 2007, need a new sale website

I hope that someone (or some business) comes up with an auction site for collectibles. Not ebay. Ebay does not suit the needs of the small-time, part-time seller of collectibles. It used to be that way, but it isn't any more. And no one has come up with a suitable replacement. I tried Yahoo but had almost no success and now its auction site is being discontinued. So I will discontinue listing items for sale on the Internet. The web is no longer a viable option for selling Barbie and other doll items made between 1972 and 1999.
This is what is needed:
1. A site that allows sellers to accept Paypal e-check or cash payments so you won't have to pay the fees for the use of Paypal. Being forced to accept credit cards, and then being forced to pay fees on Paypal payments--both credit cards and e-checks--is an utter waste of money.
2. I never minded paying the placement and final fees on ebay, but because they've increased so much in the past two years, you have to have a fairly significant profit to cover them. Between the Paypal fees and the selling fees, one has to increase the prices of each item at least $5 to cover the costs. And with older small collectibles, that often prices them beyond the cost of what they are worth.
3. A site that does not permit sales of items under 5 years of age; a site that does not permit placement of brand-new electronic or computer equipment; and a site that does not permit sale of new genuine and/or fake designer purses or new official and/or bootleg DVDs and CDs. In other words, collectible items only, items that are no longer available in stores.
4. A site with a more workable, less bug-gy listing program. Something that is compatible with dial-up, Macs and older computers and won't take 30 minutes per item to list.
5. A site without the arrogant opinionated assholes who dominate ebay's Seller Central, convinced that the only acceptable options on ebay are finding items to sell that cost 50 cents wholesale that can be resold for $100 apiece, and then the only payment acceptable is Paypal.

Next week, I will be heading to the local antique mall. I was there last night and saw that many booths are now open. I will return to selling the old-fashioned way, by actually having the merchandise out in public and setting my own prices. In the meanwhile, I am waiting out ebay's 180 day waiting period until I can actually official resign from that website. I think it will be sometime in October. I haven't placed anything for sale on ebay for weeks, and when I did have stuff for sale, I believe I sold only one item since before Christmas.

Friday, May 4, 2007

May 4, 2007, Yahoo auctions

These are the items I have for sale this week on Yahoo. If the link doesn't work, you might try copying and pasting.
Or if you want to look at the item numbers:
1994 Beverly Hills pink striped bedding, 243452747
1999 Bubble Fairy Christie, 231911100
1989 High School Jazzie, 24354441
unknown Ginny and Muffie style clothing, 243457914
I'm ending the listings on Wednesday evening because I am going out of town on Thursday and won't be back until Sunday.