Let’s have a little experiment today. I’m going to tell you three things and write a short paragraph about each of them. Only one of those things is true. It’s up to you to decide which one it is. Okay, ready to play?
1) I seldom play the lottery because the odds of winning are pretty slim. But every once in a while when I’m in a convenience store paying for something and I have a buck or so in change coming, I’ll buy one of those scratch off tickets. Yesterday I bought gas at the local stop and rob and my credit card wouldn’t work at the pump so I had to go inside to pay. Just for the heck of it, I bought a lottery ticket. Back in the Explorer, I scratched the little squares off and I won $5,000. Hey, it’s not a fortune, but it will pay for a nice cruise!
2) Terry is a cat person and I’m a dog person, but we thought we had reached the point in our lives where we didn’t want the responsibility of a pet anymore. All that changed the other day when I saw an ad online for German Shepherd puppies. If you know me, you know I love German shepherds, so we went to take a look, “just for the heck of it.” Now we’ve got a lovable little bundle of fur peeing on newspapers and chewing on our shoes.
3) We thought our RVing days were over when we bought the house and sold our Winnebago diesel pusher, but as it turns out hitch itch is a disease you can’t get over very easily. We will never go fulltime again, but we still want to travel, so we are the proud new owners of this beautiful 2010 Pleasure Way Class B motorhome.
Okay, which one of those three is true? Think about it before you answer. Did we come into some unexpected money. Hey, it could happen! Do I have a new puppy to love? You all know how much I love getting a puppy fix. Or do we have a motorhome parked in our driveway. Think about. Which is it?
The answer is, none of them are true! What? Wait a minute, didn’t I say one of those three things are true? Yeah, I did. Guess what? I lied.
Can you believe it? People actually lie on the Internet. You’re kidding me, right? It was on the Internet so it has to be true. They can’t put things on there that aren’t true. Everybody knows that.
Yeah, people do put stuff on the Internet that they make up. Why do they do it? I don’t know. I think sometimes they just want to stir up trouble. Or maybe they just want to see how many people will actually believe the BS they’re throwing down. Or, they may be idiots who really believe what they say even if there’s no basis in fact. But don’t worry, if you put it out there, people are going to pick it up and start spreading it around.
A case in point is the current flap over Pilot and Flying J truck stops. According to some clown who posted something online, he is a professional truck driver and he pulled into a Flying J somewhere and they were taking down the American flag. He claims when he asked why, an employee told him it was because the company does not want to offend foreigners. That’s all it took. His nonsense went viral and Flying J started getting flooded with emails from irate people saying they will never do business with such an anti-American company again.
I help moderate a large (52,000+ member) RVing group on Facebook and I can’t tell you how many times myself and the other administrators have taken down links or stories about this. Yesterday alone I received 14 emails from people wanting me to help spread the word and put those traitors out of business. And that doesn’t count all the instant messages I got on Facebook saying the same thing!
Okay, here’s the real story. First of all, Flying J is an American business started by a Korean War veteran 60 years ago. Here is their statement about this issue, right from the horse’s mouth: Our current policy is that an American flag can only be displayed at our locations if it can be flown according to military protocol. What many may not know is there are very specific rules and protocols to properly fly a flag; everything from how it’s raised and flown, to how it’s lit at night. Our goal is to ensure we show the flag the respect it deserves at our locations that fly the red, white, and blue. We are currently working to ensure that the flag poles at the locations that have a flag pole are repaired and in proper working condition to do so.
Flying J is very RV friendly and a popular fuel stop for RVers. Many of their locations include RV fuel islands, designated RV parking lanes where you can overnight for free, and RV dump stations. Pilot/Flying J is also a contributor to many charitable organizations that benefit veterans, including Bunker Labs, Fisher House Foundation, Operation Honor Guard, Special Operations Wounded Warrior, and Wreaths Across America.
Folks, if you get this nonsense forwarded to you, just delete it. Don’t add to the problem by blindly forwarding it on to everybody in your mailing list. What if I had written something online saying that your business or the company that you work for is un-American? How might that impact you personally? What if I wrote something online that said you were a pedophile, or a deadbeat who didn’t pay your bills? How would you feel about that?
You don’t have to be the person who originally starts an Internet myth, but you are part of the problem if you forward it on. It takes all of two minutes to do some quick online fact checking before you click send or share on something. If you’re too lazy to do that, please do me a favor and unfriend me on Facebook and take me off your e-mail list.
Congratulations Dave Tousseau, winner of our drawing for an audiobook of Big Lake Honeymoon, the seventh book in my Big Lake mystery series. We had 93 entries this time around. Stay tuned, a new contest starts soon.
Thought For The Day – My people skills are just fine. It’s my tolerance for idiots that needs work.