All posts by Mitch Mitchell

I'm an independent consultant in many fields, so I have a lot to share.

A Bad Day In The Life Of A Diabetic

I am a Type II diabetic. Every once in awhile, I write about things on this blog related to diabetes. That’s not necessarily because I feel I need to tell people about my struggles and successes, but because I don’t think that people who aren’t diabetic know what we can go through sometimes.

When I talk about it, I don’t only talk about things that affect diabetics. I have talked about the dangers of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and sugar alcohols. But I did talk about the day I was diagnosed as being diabetic, and I have given some diabetes information here and there.

Now I’m going to tell you a quick little story about my day, just to give you an example of why it’s important for me to try to pay attention to what I do, and what I go through here and there.

During the week, I’ve been sticking to a recent eating plan. My glucose was out of control for maybe three weeks, and I know stress brought some of that on. One thing that helps me overcome stress is putting myself on plans and schedules. In this way, since I set it up, I tend to follow it closely enough to get things done, no matter what they are.

Some quick numbers, since I’ll be talking numbers in this tale. A good glucose range is supposed to be 80 – 120. Some people don’t necessarily do well in that range, and I’m one of them. For me, I should be between 100 and 140. When I’m lower than 100, I get lightheaded and just don’t feel well. That doesn’t happen often, but once last summer I got down to 44 after a very strenuous walk in a lot of heat, and in late spring the same thing happened again, only I didn’t have anything to check the level, but I remembered the feeling after recovering some.

Anyway, during the week, I was averaging around 155, which isn’t bad; slightly high, but way better than the 244 I had averaged during that 3 week period, and better than the 223 I had last Sunday. I give myself the weekend to kind of be worse than perfect, but I might have to rethink that strategy a little bit.

This morning, after a day where, I’ll admit, my wife and I weren’t quite perfect, my reading was 238. My wife gave me breakfast, which was grilled cheese sandwiches, which is good and bad at the same time. I had it on wheat bread, but it does have a touch of HFCS and enriched white flour, another thing not quite as healthy. Then she gave me a cookie she’d bought at the farmer’s market yesterday. I took my medication, which includes my injection, and I figured I would be fine.

After about 90 minutes, I got overly tired. It can come on quickly, and so I went to lay down. My wife said she was leaving to go to do some shopping, and it’s Sunday so I figured it was a great day to take a nap. I went to sleep and slept for about an hour. I woke, but I was extremely groggy. The phone rang, and I barely grabbed it; it was my wife asking if I wanted anything while she was out. I hung up the phone, felt like I just couldn’t move, and went back to sleep. I slept for another hour, awoke, and still felt just as bad. I knew this wasn’t good.

Timing is everything; my wife came home within a couple of minutes, and once she made it back to the bedroom I asked her to bring me some water. Cold water sometimes helps me snap out of it, and with the cold water, I at least felt like I could move again. I came to the computer, ready to do some work, and I noticed problem number two; I couldn’t read the screen. With the browser, I can make the letters bigger, but for TweetDeck or Mailwasher, which I use to check my email before downloading it to my computer, you can’t increase the size. I couldn’t read either, and that was a warning sign.

I knew I had to check my glucose, which I did, and it was 311; ouch! That doesn’t usually happen if I inject when I eat, but today it did. I knew that the water had probably brought it down a little bit, which allowed me to get out of bed in the first place, but that was scary.

I knew I had to eat again, as it had been 5 hours, so I got something to eat, then gave myself a second injection, a smaller dose, which isn’t part of my plan, but I had to get this under control. My wife and I also went out for a walk, to try to stimulate the blood flow. At least I was fully awake at this point, and the walk went smoothly enough.

We got home, and I came to the computer; I could see again. Whew! Now, the thing is that I’m supposed to wait at least 2 hours until after I’ve eaten to check glucose again, and I’ve just checked after 2 1/2 hours; my glucose is at 91; ouch! I’ve brought my glucose down 240 points in 2 1/2 hours, which might be a bit extreme. It’s easier lower than where I want it to be, so now I have to eat something again. That’s not a bad thing because during the week, when I’m doing well, I eat every 2 1/2 hours to 3 hours anyway, smaller meals to stimulate the metabolism, which also helps me lose some weight, along with the exercise. But I hadn’t thought that, even with the exercise, I would see a number like that.

For more information, when someone has high diabetic numbers, the blood thickens, and doesn’t run through the body all that well. That can make one sluggish, but it can do a host of other things to people as well. For me, it makes me logie, but if it gets too high it can also affect my eyesight. I don’t need to be doing that sort of thing all that often, as it’s not good for me, or any diabetic, long term.

However, it’s better lower than higher, so I’m not all that upset right now. At least I can see, and I can eat something and bring it back into a normal level. Still, this is what some diabetics go through, which is why I wanted to mention it here. This isn’t a joke, folks; sometimes, it’s pretty scary. And another scary thing is that there are a lot of you walking around right now, suffering some of the same things, meaning you might be diabetic, and you don’t know it yet, or aren’t paying attention to the signs. I know many people who found themselves in the emergency room with numbers in the 500’s because they kept ignoring signs until they finally crashed.

That’s a terrible thing to have happen to you; read my story of how I learned I was diabetic, which is one of those links above. Please pay attention to what’s going on with you, because the sooner you find out, the sooner you have a chance to take care of it.

Oh yeah, it sometimes brings on depression also; I need to keep a check on that as well.

Bayer 561440 Ascensia Breeze 2 Blood Glucose Monitor System

Bayer 561440 Ascensia Breeze 2 Blood Glucose Monitor System

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Reviewing Visitors

Last night I watched a short video on a site called Inside Adsense. The title of the article was Speeding Up: The Basics And Analytics, which was kind of a goofy title because, if you ask me, the video had nothing to do with the title.

Anyway, in the video, which is about 4 minutes, the presenter talks about ways to check the type of traffic you’re getting based on looking at a few specific areas. One of those, the one I’m going to talk about here, is Visitor Loyalty. This basically states how often someone decides to come back to your website, or in this case, to my blog. It doesn’t tell how it knows who they are, and it doesn’t tell you who they are, but it knows.

I decided to look at some statistics, and of course I wanted to share with all of you. I’ve also looked at visitors before, but never at this stat, I don’t believe. I’m also doing two different time periods, one current, and one from last November, when this blog was humming.

For now, I’m choosing June 1st to June 30th. First I look at just general visitors information. During this period, I had 1,301 visitors, 883 absolute unique visitors, which means never been here before. People stayed an average of 2 minutes and 18 seconds, which means enough actually stayed around to read what I had to say. And it said I had 64% of absolutely new visitors. That percentage different from the number of visitors and absolute unique visitors, which comes in around 68%, and my thought is that the 64% represents people who have never been here before, whereas the other group has been here before, but hadn’t been by in a very long time.

Next I looked at Visitor Loyalty. It starts with that figure of 64% of new visitors, which are also one and done; thanks for coming, sorry you had to leave so soon. The rest of the figures are intriguing, though. They’ll tell you how many people came twice, three times, up to 8 times, then you get divisions such as 9-14 times, 15-25 times, 26-50 times, 51-100 times, 101-200 times, and finally 201+ times. All of these comprise my remaining 36%. My highest is people who’ve come back more than 200 times, at 11.61%; wow! There’s true loyalty, I must say. Next is twice at 6.15%, followed by 101-200 times at 3.77%, and 9-14 times at 3.54%. That’s a total of 326 visitors.

One other interesting statistic is looking at what they term Visitor Recency. This shows the percentages of how quickly visitors come to see your content. My figure is at 88% within 24 hours of posting; nice! I’m wondering if a lot of that is the Twitter factor or the subscriber factor, since all my posts show up on Twitter immediately, and of course if one subscribes to a feed they’ll know about it pretty quickly also.

Now to compare this period to November. In that month I had 1,602 visitors, 867 of them absolute unique visitors. They stayed on the site an average of 5 minutes and 59 seconds; nice. And my absolutely new visitors was around 52%.

More comparing, out of that 52%, my highest group of people coming back to the blog was from 101-200 at 12%, 2 times at 7.7%, 51-100 times at 7%, and 15-25 at 3.9%, totaling 491 visitors. And, the final statistic, my Visitor Recency figure was 92.5% within 24 hours.

This points out some interesting things. One, some of my readers have stuck with me through a lot, and I thank you for it. There’s also a lot of new readers who visit, which is great, but I’m not capturing all of their attention since their bouncing quicker than in the past. Probably many new people who visit this blog take a look at one other post, since that’s the second highest number, and then decide it’s not for them; gotta keep ’em coming. What’s a great figure for visitor loyalty? I’m not really sure, but I’m not necessarily mad at either of the figures I have.

One final thing to throw in here, since I’m talking about visitors. Out of my top 10 visited articles in the month, only 4 of 19 were written in June. My fouth highest was written last November, third highest written in January. That’s probably not a bad thing, having older posts that still bring visitors to the blog.

So, there you go. More information you probably didn’t need, but information that, if you’re on Analytics, you might think about looking at to figure out something about your visitors.

Visitors Guest Chair, Air Grid Back with Leather Seat

Price – $159.99

Do We Hate Marketing So Much That,…

I recently watched an interesting video from John Chow called How I Make $40,000 a Month From a Blog. It was pretty neat, as he explained how he makes his money. One can’t be mad at him for making money, and though he states he makes it all from blogging, it seems there’s a lot more involved than him just blogging. It’s about an hour, and I encourage y’all to check it out.

Anyway, he talked about a few things he does that, I have to admit, irritate me when I visit his site. I’m not one of those people who hates ads, but I do hate popups, popunders, and now these things that end up on top or on the bottom or sometimes both on these pages, that you have to close to see more of the content.

One of the people there asked him about it, and he said that since he added all those things he’s converted more people and gotten them to give him their email addresses than he had before. When asked if he was worried about losing visitors, he not only said no, but he said “if they’re not really buyers, and I’m trying to make money, why would I worry about them?”

It’s an interesting point, and I’ll say now that I might have missed a word or two there, but that’s pretty much what he said. He’s not saying he doesn’t care about his readers; he’s saying he cares more about buyers.

It’s interesting because many of us are looking at finding different ways to make more money online in some fashion, and I’m not sure all of us have the stomach to do it in the way that will make us some serious money. Some of you may remember when I wrote a post asking if we can stomach sales, and I know for myself that I haven’t had the stomach for it across the board.

Sometimes, it does take that big decision as to what we’re here for, the fun, or the money making part. How bad do we want it, or need it? And, just because someone else wants it and needs it, is it fair to castigate them for it? I don’t hate on anyone who makes money; I want my own money. What I wonder is whether some folks go too far in making that money. We’ve discussed how some internet marketers seem to send us 2 or 3 sales letters a day, but that’s not the majority of them. We always have the right to unsubscribe, but do we have the right to hate the way they’re making their money, especially if it’s legal? Is there one of us who thinks these guys, who aren’t spammers because we did give them our information, are worse than the banks and credit card people, who put us into the financial mess we’re presently in?

Just something else to think about as we contemplate our money-making selves.

Baseball’s All-Star Game Reference Guide 1933-2007: 78 Games in 74 Years

Price – $26.36

Google Announces Its New Operating System

Of course the rumors were always out there, at least for the last year, so when Google announced to day that they were coming out with their own operating system, some people were surprised, but many people who dabble online were wondering just what they thought they were doing.

This might end up being a good OS, but who’s going to know? Unlike Microsoft, it’s hard to imagine that Google will be able to convince a lot of computer makers to switch to their new OS just because they’re Google. Some might be inclined to try if it’s free, which it just might be, but it’s not going to gain a lot of attention initially, if at all.

Still, they had to do it, just as Microsoft feels they have to try to get into the search market stronger with their latest effort (how many is this now?), Bing (does anyone else ever want to break out into a song when they see that?). But one has to wonder what the ulterior motives of it all is.

Yeah, I’m sounding like a conspiracy guy, but let’s look at this for a minute. First they come out with Google Apps, which mimic all the Microsoft Office products only it’s a free online service. However, you store all your records on Google’s servers; do we really know that they don’t have the capability to scan all those records and do something with all that information?

Then they do an end-round on Firefox by developing their own browser, which they say will be faster than any other and work better with Google since they developed it. Mozilla supposedly really didn’t know until late that Google was working on the project, and when they found out, along with the rest of us, we all questioned what the relationship would be with the Mozilla Foundation, whom Google used to fund; they still might.

To date, Microsoft is still leading on office products (by the way, who else asks themselves why Microsoft has both Office and Works, yet they’re not compatible with each other?), and Mozilla is still holding a strong second. Truthfully, I think Chrome is still down around 5th, but don’t quote me on that one. I don’t know all that much about Google Apps to be able to talk about why Microsoft is still killing them when it’s free, but I do know about Firefox enough to talk about it.

Firefox is the bomb because of all the add-ons you can attach to it, which can do so many things. Neither IE nor Chrome nor Opera or anyone else can make that claim. Sure, even with the new Firefox 3.5, which I like, we all know that Firefox isn’t the fastest browser out there; Opera has always made that claim in the past (turns out that lately it might not be true). But it’s the most customizable, therefore the most fun and the most productive.

So, what about the Chrome OS? It’s best feature might be that there won’t be any viruses for it for a long time. The worst features is that, from what I’m hearing, it might not work with any of the Microsoft products on the market right now, and it’s unsure how they’ll work with other products. Sure, there’s Google Apps, but it’s not universally used, so at some point you need more in an OS than being able to tell people to load it, then go online to do everything. And, just to mention this, but right now it’s only for notebooks.

All that, and then there was this article from PC World titled 5 Ways Microsoft Will Bring the Hurt to Google Chrome OS that’s an interesting read. Microsoft isn’t just sitting around waiting for Google to catch up.

I’m certainly not the biggest Microsoft fan out there, especially when it comes to Vista, but one has to acknowledge that Microsoft is firmly entrenched in our computer lives, and we’d really be in a lot of mess if we had to deal with another operating system that has limits to what it can allow us to use and do.

It should be an interesting battle over the next five years.

Sony VAIO TT Series Laptop Intel Centrino Core 2 Duo SU9300 1.2GHz Notebook

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If I Wanted To Make Money On A Blog, I Would,…

Well, that is the question, isn’t it? What would I, or you?

Most of the money I’ve made comes from one of my content websites, which is a great thing. The problem with it is that it’s limited in scope. In other words, the people who come there come because they absolutely need the information I give them, but that’s it; they’re not buyers. The reason I make so much money off that site is because, obviously, they must get information from me, then see something in one of those Adsense ads that they think will give them more, or different information, and off they go.

I’ve always said that this blog wasn’t necessarily meant to make money. That’s kind of a misnomer, or at least it’s incomplete. When I started this blog, I wanted a place where I could talk about anything I wanted to talk about, and put up some of my affiliate banners and products, just in case someone saw something they just had to have. As Mirjam said, the products don’t always match what I’m writing about. As I said back, it’s never been much of a concern of mine.

The truth is that, for this blog, there aren’t products that match up to most of what I’m talking about. For instance, I talk about blogging; what products are there that I’m going to advertise? I talk about websites I visit; what products are there that I’m going to advertise? I talk about writing; you see a pattern here? Every once in awhile, I touch upon a subject that fits something I can market, and I’ll pop that in there, but it’s rare.

So, it’s not that this blog doesn’t make any money; it’s that it doesn’t make much. But that’s okay; I put my stuff up there, talk about some of it from time to time, and who knows, right? By the way, just to clear this one up, over my almost 450 posts, I’ve probably had about 15 clicks total from this blog on any of my affiliate stuff, including those posts where the topic and the product/banner ad matched. So, saying that my products should match the content doesn’t hold water.

But let’s go here for a minute. We’ve all probably talked at one point or another about niche blogging. I’ve talked about someone I knew who found a niche in hydroponics and was doing well monthly in earnings because that’s all she wrote on. So, back in December, I decided to embark on something I knew okay, but that I’ve gotten to know much better, that being my finance blog. Though I move around from topic to topic, the general theme of the site is finance, and nothing else.

This is the definition of a niche blog. And just how much money have I made from this blog? As of today, for the entire run of the blog, I’ve made a whopping 72 cents; that’s it. And I made that on Adsense. I have some 300×250 ads on that site all geared towards financial things, and I have Adsense.

I even put on this video thing that Sire recommended that, if people decided to watch it, I think I’d make money off it. Nada, nothing, almost zip. One click on an affiliate ad in six months; not very popular, is it? If there’s any consolation, I made that money in June, so maybe it’s ready to start breaking out, being relatively recent.

What this points out is that it’s not only finding a niche, but the right niche. If you can’t write more than one article a month, and even then you’re running out of ideas to write about, you might want to consider writing about something else, then figuring out if there’s a way to make money doing it.

Anyway, throwing it out to y’all to share your thoughts. If you were to start a niche blog today, one that you hoped would really make money, what would you write on?