The Jake Files

June 7, 2006

Freedom!

Filed under: Chandler,Economy & Business,Entrepreneurship,Self-employment,Work — Amazing Jake @ 9:49 pm

Today was my first working day as a business owner.  The dust of Corporate America will no longer cling to MY feet!

Of course, everything didn't go as planned.  After 13 1/2 hours, I got to see the kids and the Amazing Mrs. Jake for about a half hour before they all went to bed. The delivery van was backed into in a hit-and-run in the parking lot last night, so the former owner and I have to figure out whose insurance pays for the damage.  I also found out that two key employees will be leaving at the end of June, so I've only got a few weeks to learn the business, then train replacements.

But, the good news is, I came home with a lot of cash and checks to deposit tomorrow.  And, I don't have any useless meetings to attend tomorrow, nor do I have to answer to anyone but my customers. 

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June 6, 2006

6-6-06: Bad Omen or Just Another Day?

Filed under: Chandler,Economy & Business,Entrepreneurship,Self-employment,Work — Amazing Jake @ 9:38 am

So today is Tuesday June 6th, 2006, or as the hysterics are referring to it, 6-6-06! 

So is there anything to worry about on this auspicious day?  I sure hope not, as I will at long last be closing escrow on my new business later today.  The Amazing Jake will be a tax-paying employer of legal employees as of 6am tomorrow.  

The lease has been approved, legal structure completed, business insurance and payroll service obtained, workers' comp insurance and credit card processing almost complete.  Fourteen hour days begin tomorrow.

I just hope Armageddon doesn't happen after I sign my papers today. 

May 26, 2006

Gas Price Hysteria

So, I'm catching up on some things around the house today, and the familiar segments have been airing on Fox News Channel:  high gas prices, combined with the Memorial Day Holiday, equal financial disaster for consumers.  Sound familiar?  I don't like gas prices going up any more than anyone else, but let's put this in perspective a bit.

According to this site, the distance between Phoenix and Sedona (an appropriate Memorial Day get-out-of-Phoenix destination) is 125 miles. 

A quick Google search found this site, which gives today's high and low gas prices in Chandler as $3.02 and $3.14 per gallon.  Split the difference for an average of $3.08.

Pick your gas-guzzling environment devastator of choice, but for this example we'll use a generic SUV getting 18 MPG.

If my public school math instruction holds true, we find that it will take $21.39 to purchase the gas for a hypothetical Memorial Day jaunt to Sedona (125 miles / 18 MPG = 6.944 gallons required for the trip, times $3.08 per gallon = $21.39 for the total gas price).  Now imagine that the price of gas goes up to $3.35 per gallon.  Surely that would prevent us from enjoying our holiday weekend, would it not?  Suddenly the price of gas for the trip would go from $21.39 all the way up to $23.26!  That's shocking!  Congressional inquiries are sure to follow.  Now imagine that the price of gas goes up to $4.00 per gallon.  The rivers will run red and the clocks will turn backward!  But, the cost of our holiday excursion will only be $27.78, merely $6.39 more than at the average price of $3.08 per gallon.

Now I know you're thinking, "Amazing Jake, that makes sense on paper, but Al Gore says the planet's going to explode if we don't stop driving so much.  What are we to do?" 

To that, I offer the following:  Just do as Al Gore does. (click on the screen cap of Michelle Malkin).

One final thought.  A gallon of Evian water costs $6.40 per gallon.  Now I know we don't consume Evian water at the same rate as gas in our cars, but COME ON!  It costs money to produce goods and services.  Give the unscrupulous windfall profiteering capitalists a break.  They give us jobs and an affordable product that makes it possible for our mobile economy to exist.

May 16, 2006

Unofficial Voting Results

Thanks to reader A.M. for alerting us that unofficial election results are in already.

And as she points out, it didn't appear to be close:

Trinity Donovan – 8,367 total votes (5,631 early, 2,736 today)

Jeff Weninger – 7,610 total votes (5,260 early, 2,350 today)

Becky "No Action" Jackson – 4,638 total votes (3,546 early, 1,092 today)

Congratulations to Trinity and Jeff!

Don’t Forget to Vote Today

Today is Election Day, so don't forget to vote in the Chandler City Council Elections!

It looks like Jeff Weninger finally got a website up and running, so check it out.  I've made it clear that Jeff has my vote, and I also voted for Trinity Donovan.

For those who haven't made up their minds yet, let me give you this to think about on your way to the polls today. (more…)

May 11, 2006

Goodbye Corporate America!

Filed under: Chandler,Economy & Business,Job Loss,Self-employment,Unemployment,Work — Amazing Jake @ 11:28 am

The Amazing Jake is soon to be a small business owner.  As regular readers know, I've been searching for a new career since March 20th of this year, and as I wrote about yesterday regarding my brief absence from blogging, I spent a lot of time over the past week and a half ruminating over my future.  Last night I made an offer on an existing small business in Chandler, and the current owner accepted this morning.

So, now begins the due diligence process.  Assuming everything checks out with the financials, business equipment and fixtures, etc., I'll close on the business at the end of the month. 

It's a little disconcerting to take such a huge chunk out of your personal savings.  But, I feel more stress-free than I have in a long time.

May 10, 2006

Geo’s Exchange with Councilman Orlando

If you haven't read Geo's email interview with Councilmember Orlando yet, you can find it here.  His followup phone conversation can be found here.

As I've stated before, I am not in favor of the recall.  I understand Orlando's and Sepulveda's reasoning for wanting Pentz out as City Manager, I just don't agree that those reasons are grounds for terminating him.  What I really disliked, however, was the tone and manner of the meeting, and the fact that it appeared to be a predetermined agenda that Pentz would be fired after the review.  THAT's what got me fired up, yet I STILL DON'T SUPPORT THE RECALL.  Recalls are supposed to be for malfeasance or illegality in office, not for unpopular decisions.  And, it's only one decision among many more that the council makes.

Don't sign the recall petition.  Don't vote for the recall if there's an election.  It's divisive and unwarranted.

‘Jackson for Action’ Not What Council Needs

Thanks to Geo for pointing out this opinion on AZCentral.com from last week:

Wasn't it about 12 years ago, when Patti Bruno was first running for City Council in Chandler, that there was such an outcry from the people of our city that she not be allowed to run for, let alone be elected to, the council because she was affiliated with the Chandler Chamber of Commerce? (more…)

Local News Roundup for Wed May 10

Raises to Bring Workers' Pay Up to Standards – Edythe Jensen, AZCentral.com

Just a thought: How enthusiastic were the councilmembers to increase pay PRIOR TO the Pentz forced resignation?  I know this has been a study in the works for a while, but it was the first thing I cynically thought of when I saw the headline.

GOP Spins Democrats' Signs – Paul Giblin, East Valley Trib

Haven't paid much attention to Pederson yet, as I think he's going to get pasted in the election.  The whole slogan "No one's senator but ours" is, I think, a loser, as it turns on the electorate feeling like Senator Kyl's in someone's back pocket, a la Duke Cunningham. 

Workers Welcomed as Long as They're Legal – Sarah N. Lynch, East Valley Trib

Huge Intel Layoffs 'Unlikely' – Mike Burkett, Chandler Independent

Notice how they say "Huge" layoffs, and don't say "NO layoffs?"

Budget Reflects Changing Focus – Mike Burkett, Chandler Independent

Anger to Draw More to Polls? – Mike Burkett, Chandler Independent

Downtown's Future to Rely on Past – Mike Burkett, Chandler Independent

KTAR Gains AM-FM Simulcast – Diane Arthur, The Business Journal

It will be interesting to see how this impacts the talk radio market in Phoenix.  We already had Stern on FM prior to his defection to satellite, and now they're advertising Tom Leykis for the afternoons.  Will the KTAR simulcast prompt KFYI and/or KKNT The Patriot to do the same?  Personally, I hope so.  KFYI has a great signal, but KKNT960 could really use the additional audience that FM would provide. 

New Poll: Napolitano, Kyl Maintain Leads in Re-election Bids – Mike Sunnucks, The Business Journal

AOL to Layoff 300 in Tucson Call Center – The Business Journal

Residents Begin Recall of Sepulveda, Orlando – Laurie Fagen, San Tan Sun News

Council Runoff Election Q&A – Laurie Fagen, San Tan Sun News

Enjoy!

Google Video of Mark Pentz City Council Meeting

Regular reader A.M. alerted us to the following video clips on Google Video that contain the infamous April 10th City Council meeting.

Part 1 (6 hours 14 minutes)

Part 2  (3 hours 50 minutes)

Part 3 (3 hours 18 minutes)

Enjoy!

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