It’s Just Another Day by Rick London

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     It’s just another day.   When I awakened that McCartney’s tune “Another Day” came in and out of my mind…though for the life of me, I couldn’t remember all the words.  So I looked them up. Don’t you love The Internet?

     Every day she takes a morning bath, she wets her hair

 Wraps a towel around her as she’s heading for the bedroom chair

 It’s just another day….

     I got out of bed, kissed my wife, and brushed my teeth (maybe I should brush my teeth first in the future), and asked myself, “Why did that particular album have such an impact), and, now that I’m 58, how far have I come since that time?

     I was 15 years old (1970) when the album was released.  I was still wearing out my fifth copy of the White Album which had only been released a year prior to that.   Imagine how prolific the Fab 4 had been.  Imagine.  And now McCartney was flying (nearly) solo with Wings (including his late wife Linda). 

    I grabbed some clean sweats (my latest haute’ couture) and headed toward the fridge only to notice I was out of SILK organic soy milk which has become my latest daily breakfast (along with organic coffee du Kroger’s own “Simple Truth” brand) .   These are not product placement posts, friends, I promise. I doubt those folks even know I have a blog much less even who I am.

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     So, I hopped in the car and headed out to Kroger to get some more SILK and ended up finding another $62.75 worth of stuff we needed (after my Kroger card discount), purchased it and headed back home.   By then, Lee had already drunk her daily green tea breakfast and was on her second digital design for her gift line, and I’d not created anything for my own.  My mind was on one thing and one thing only.  Liquid soy protein milk.  Have I lost it?  Nahhhh. I’d never had it to lose.  

      After my “fix”, I headed for the computer to check my  email, only to find I could not send or receive any.   Only an error message that looked like my computer had been breached by the Chinese, taken to the pawn shop, and sold for $50.   I knew what it meant.  My feeble webmail was full and I had to empty it which took about 20 minutes out of my day.   I thought once I was an entrepreneur, people would run to my side to tackle such chores like that but nooooooooooo.  So I emptied the email box while Lee was making our delicious morning fruit/veggie smoothie.  Ever since she started making them over a year ago, she always asks me if I want one. I have never once refused. 

     So I look up at the news as my email slowly empties to see the talking heads tell me my country is going out of business.  My first thought is, “Is the cost of living in Tahiti high” but then remember I love where I live and nix that thought immediately and know, having worked in news, that things are never as bad as reported.  If news were reported as a “neutral static event” not many ads would be sold.

       I sit down to digitally design some products but nothing comes to me, so I write this blog instead. It’s just another day…….

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Rick London is a writer, cartoonist and designer.  He founded Londons Times Offbeat Cartoons & Funny Gifts in 1997 which has been Google #1 ranked since 2005 and Bing #1 ranked since 2008.  He is married to popular wildlife/nature photographer Lee Hiller-London who runs the nature blog HikeOurPlanet.com.  You can follow them both on Twitter @RickLondon & @LeeHillerLondon. 

Beware Of The Sighs Of March by Rick London

 March is almost here. It marks several anniversaries that usually only I remember because they were milestones in my life.

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     On March 10, 2007, my late dog “Thor” died in my arms on the floor.  The vet believes (from his teeth) that he was approximately 22 years old.  Some don’t believe me when I tell them but actually for dogs on the b.a.r.f. diet (biologically appropriate raw foods) that is about medium age.  Many have reported having had dogs that lived to be close to thirty (human years) and cats that lived into their twenties.   There is a lot on the Internet about the b.a.r.f. diet for pets.  Thor went vet-free until nearly the end.  And he was an extremely happy soul all the way until his final journey on this planet. 

      March 19th marks the 15th anniversary of Londons Times Cartoons.  I announced that it was 15 years last year but I was mistaken.  I started it on March 19, 1997, and this year marks the 15th.  It had other names “London’s Bridge” and then “London’s Fawg” and finally I settled for “Londons Times”. I instinctively knew that might not be such a great idea by 1999, but we had so many cartoons with that credit at the top, I felt a bit silly trying to change it again.   Some of the web analytics assured me that most people looking for it, type in London Times. I didn’t believe it at first until people would call or write or whatever and call it “London Times”.

     I published our 15th anniversary book last year on Kindle, but it didn’t sell nearly as well as the 1st one, so maybe I’ll re-release it.  Who knows. I usually don’t know until the day or the day before I decide to do something like that; that seems oh-so-important, but of course is not at all.

     Occasionally people would ask me, “Won’t that big newspaper in London, England come after you for swiping their name?”.   Actually no, since their name is The Times Of London and only those who are not aware of that call them The London Times.  Other’s would say, “Are you strange? Isn’t your name Stetelman and ya’ll were part of that real estate group down in S. Mississippi?” 

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Yes, but nobody could remember, pronounce, nor spell Stetelman.  That is, in fact, fine in a town with a pace as slow as the one in which I was raised.  But, try living your life in New York City or Los Angeles or Washington, D.C. spending half your days spelling or pronouncing your name when you’re moving at warp speed, and you listen to advice.

      I had an agent in Washington who was younger than me, but smarter, and he asked me, “Have you ever considered changing your name to something easier?”  My first response was, “How does Floyd Stetelman sound”?   He didn’t even smile.  He said, “If you are going to ever make it, you better have a name someone can remember.”

     I suggested “London”.   He said that London is a great name and easy to remember but “why London”.  Well that was my mom’s maiden name.  He said “Go with it”.  That was 1988 and I’ve used it ever since when doing cartoon, writing or design business.

    One of the most interesting observations to me, after a lifetime of spelling my name for people, and how uncomfortable they feel for having to ask, is how comfortable they feel saying, “London, oh like the city”.  My wife, Lee Hiller-London, more often than not uses her own last name “Hiller” in her work.  I like her name. It’s easy to say and spell, and we get our business done rather quickly sans any spelling for anyone.  Now maybe I’m making a mountain out of a mole Hiller.  Or maybe just a bad pun. Sorry baby.  It was there…in my head, so I typed it.  X0x0  Sigh! 

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Rick London is a writer, designer, cartoonist and songwriter.  He founded Londons Times Cartoons in 1997.  It has been Google’s #1 ranked offbeat cartoons & funny gifts since 2005 and Bing’s #1 since 2008.  He also founded Rick London Designs which is a wisdom/life/motivation/inspiration quote gift shop where he designs gifts of famous quotes with graphics of those who penned or said them.  He is married to Lee Hiller-London founder of Lee Hiller Designs where she designs her own brand of unique gifts and home decor. Both enjoy hiking in Hot Springs National Park which is their home, and Lee Hiller-London is a professional wildlife and nature photographer.  You can follow them on Twitter @RickLondon and @LeeHillerLondon.