Thursday, April 14, 2005


read "please play again".

I don't go to Tim Horton's very often. It's not that I don't like their products. In fact, I like them very much. I can't say no when asked if I would like a donut or muffin with my large, one sugar, which is way I don't often go to Tim's. Today for example I ordered an apple fritter with my soup. It was still warm when the counter-chic handed to me. I ate it first. Before my soup. Oh baby it was good, but that's not what I want to bitch about, how could I, it was...

Anyway, this Roll up the Rim contest has gotten shitty. I used to win all the time but this time only twice. The first time it was a free donut, which I lost and the second was a free muffin, which was bran and made me need to shit at work. I think I have mentioned how I feel about that.

And it's not just me. Everyone I talk to is also coming up dry on the winner side. It seems to me that Tim Horton's has not bothered to increase the prize pool along with the increase in coffee sales. Last year Tim's grew by 20% same-store sales. Were there 20% more prizes. I doubt it! Although I can't actually say for certain they didn't.

So I present the Arthur Factor for analysis.

Cups of coffee purchased during the RUTRTW contest: 23

Cost of goods purchased: $28.75

Cups of coffee normally purchased over similar period: 2

Cost of goods purchased: $2.50

Total prize value (including the lost donut) $1.74

Net benefit to Arthur: ($24.51)
(not excluding the shits I got from the bran muffin)

Now say there are at least 500,000 people across the country who like me increase Tim's coffee consumption during the contest (I just pulled the figure out of my ass. It's not significant in any way). That would mean an increase in sales of $12.2 million. Of course I checked the Tim Horton's website for odds of winning, which turned out to be 1 in 9, which nearly corresponds to my actual results, which means I have nothing to complain about other than being just slightly below average in terms of odds.

Friday, April 08, 2005

I'm outa here.

I have decided to pursue the creation of my new political party with much more vigour. I will not be writing for some time, not that I write all that much now. I would however like input. I am creating a moderate but progressive federal political party, fiscally responsible and socially accountable. What would you like to see? Email me at and let me know.

My job forces me to interact with the public on a day to day basis. It's the same job I have had for about 7 years, although the employer has changed twice and I now work for myself. In that time I have interacted with a lot of people. What has become painfully clear to me is that a majority of people are more likely to take advice from some clown on the TV or a guy a work who knows somebody that knows something, rather than me.

"I read on the internet...."! Gawd I hate those words. I know when a client comes into my office and begins a conversation with "I read on the internet" or if they are carrying a copy of a weekly magazine that had an investing piece in it, it's going to mean a swift but certain pain in the ass for me.

There have been so many times in my seven years in the financial business that I have wanted to look a client squarely in the eyes and say "you're a fucking moron, now get out of my office!" Oh ya, that would be sweet.

I'm not saying I am right all the time. Fuck, I'd be happy being right most of the time! Well okay, some of the time, but my point is this. Okay, I don't have a point I just wanted to vent a little, no wait, I do want to make a point and it's that people have stopped questioning the source of the information they accept as truth.

We are living in a time when media outlets are quoting bloggers as sources of information. Is it the bloggers that are to blame? No, of course not, not even the ones that are just making shit up. It's the public. The consumer is to blame for accepting this. One of my favourite movie quotes is from Men In Black. J asks: "why the big secret? People are smart, they can handle it." K responds: "a 'person' is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals and you know it."

The heart breaking thing is I think it's true. People, the collective consumer I have grown to hate, although I make my living off them, are a bunch of panicky, dumb and dangerous animals. Oh well, what can you do?