Just back from a week at a Sheraton timeshare (a tax free barter courtesy of my Merger for a Burger, a wholly owned subsidiary of my LLC, Close your deal for a tasty Meal). It must have been the heat, because upon my return, I apparently became Larry King. Note to droma, seatexan and all other millennials, Larry is a Hall of Fame interviewer, first on nationwide radio and then CNN, before slipping over to the dark side RT (which, btw, why in the world is this on US television?) but also was known for his USA Today column, often just an odd collection of thoughts and frequently, non sequiturs https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dK6qcvrF-4I
I haven't received a moderator 'like' since, gosh, who knows when - but I post I'm going away and the Like board lights up with communitymanagers clicking away - things that make you go hmmmm.
Speaking of CMgr - hey nathalief, nice work on reducing the prominence of the Exclusive News in trending, along with Latest Content, these are worthwhile revisions to the forum and might help increase participation, thank you. You should take a lesson from the Appropriate Team though and highlight the improvements. Heck, they slash benefits and brag about it; $10 F & B coupon (lose wine and cheese Welcome Amenity); to help customers book rooms on short notice, we have moved cancellation policy back to 3 days; "we listen to our customers" you don't like the Cat. 5 Certificate, poof, it's gone, you're welcome; and our favorite, as a favor to Insiders, we have removed Hotel Reviews; etc etc etc
I was down in Orlando. Here's a photo (the lighting was bad) of jsucool76 jasper100 and myself at the Diana Ross concert at Doc Phillips concert hall. Naah, just kidding; I was banging around all week with fratboy pals, jsu was editing the summertime family favorite, A Clockwork Orange, and we're keeping the reveal of the jasper appearance a secret until Tipple 2 to increase signups.
On a side note; I was inspired by jasper to post on Facebook a picture of me kayaking (a bogo, which is how I like to travel - deals and value; it can be a Fairfield or a St. Regis, but give me a deal and I'm happy as can be) and wanted to be where no one else had ever been, so I labeled it kayaking in a volcanic crater in Lake Tanzania (which doesn't exist). Got double digit likes, but not one inquiry as to where the heck it was. Next week I'm posting a photo of the Munsters, so that I get a lot of "beautiful family" comments.
My SPG Platinum card came in handy; not only did it save me 10% on food and drink (15% on Starbucks stuff), but it also earned me a two hour later checkout (and remember, it wasn't even my timeshare). There is a real benefit of the tangible product coupled with "the schmooze" that makes for a persuasive case. painedplatinum let me know when your fancy, schmancy, mobile app earns a late timeshare checkout.
And speaking of schmooze - bpelican joins arkwright as the second forum intellectual in a month to misname me (Eric and Etc), but that's ok, I know I'm still #1 in their hearts. normanp, good having you on board, it appears we may need some bench strength in our intellectual starting lineup.
Speaking of SPGers - aren't we glad brianandlin rebounded from that tramatic Bud and crisps tragedy. As rickyzackybobby wrote, Arne underestimated the intensity of the SPG loyalty. Now, there's few smarter than Marriott (and Arne) when it comes to acquisitions, so when I hear that Marriott was surprised by the small amount of overlap between the loyalty programs and the 'rabid' nature of SPGers, (which wouldn't have surprised any reader of the forums) it reminds me what a lucrative deal the purchase was for Marriott (as later proven by the stock price). Marriott could have easily known far more about both issues given today's Big Data abilities, but it wasn't material. For Marriott to respond with a prompt 11.4% counteroffer ($12.2 to $13.6) and still make a killing financially, shows me how much opportunity there was in the deal (and why Starwood needed to be put on the block for capturing value). The SPGers and their intensity are valuable to us Marriott loyalists, in that hopefully, Marriott will resist their natural inclination to 'enhance' the benefit program the way the airlines have. Hang tough SPGers, we're all pulling for you.
The intensity of the SPGers also goes to show what many of us have written for years regarding the Freddies. Marriott winning 10 years in a row doesn't necessarily indicate that it is the best program, but rather the most popular, with far more members to vote for their favorite (sort of like Bud Light is America's favorite beer).
Just finished watching the entertaining Genius on Nat'l Geo about Einstein, which brings me to brightlybob's theory of point value relativity. Holy cow, that's some mind bending stuff bbob (good thing that wasn't on the billable hour meter or we'd all be chipping in for his next trip to China). A tip of the cap to bejacob, who once again demonstrates his courage in posting 'risky' statements - no need to demur b.e. that's good stuff, keeps the forum lively and on track, one way or another. Much as I bust your chops about being the 'teacher's pet' that B stands for badger, an independent, fierce, thinker - go man, go and thanks for all you do.
And while we're feeling frisky, pluto77, not only an entertaining slice of snark, but a tech breakthrough (well at least for me) posting an image on a status update, very impressive; fortunately for all, apparently, I have yet been able to post links or images on my Status.
Which reminds me, rlswider you must attend Tipple 2 to serve as my goodwill ambassador at my, Erc Irks booth (where we'll give away old Marriott pens of hotels, Hollywood Renaissance, no longer in the family).
Good to see californian, calfornian (I can't remember or find, what she goes by) back in the game. She was actually the first Insider I ever met (Laguna Beach) and has a lot to offer, so let's hope she can find the vortex opening again.
platpboy4ever - if you add all of the Concierge properties 'to your list' you are going to have enough points to capture the SPG Experience bidding war for Jeff and/or Elan's Trip to Mars; although I believe azdesertrat should win the 500 points, Armenian bread, who'd of thought, good stuff!
And of course I couldn't post w/o mentioning by bestest bud, the AV Geeks among AV Geeks, iahflyr.
Warning: Marriott benefit appreciation from Erc: my United Silver earned me not only an EconPlus on the way down, but First Class (for two) on the way back - amazing. Isn't it fascinating how with First Class (and a few 12 year old single malt scotches - Glenfarclas) the flight goes so much faster (there's that theory of relativity again).
I was going to write a review of the Sheraton, but I want to help vaboywnder last at least until Labor Day, but suffice it to say that the Sheraton Vistana in Buena Vista Fl was a great stay, the staff was very personable and competent and the offerings were attractive (nice lunch places, even a cigar and whisky flight night - yeah baby).
Happy 150th Birthday to peymanagement, yogib and all of our Canadian friends. Yes, I know enough about our neighbors to the north to know that they kicked our fannies (that word makes bbob weak in the knees, if he can use lumme, I can use fanny) in the War of 1812, but I still love their poutine.
And speaking of anniversaries, Happy Anniversary to nationwide, which brings me to the close of this post. I'll go grab my coffee and bask in the fact that for 14 minutes, I'm ahead of the widget king.
If I didn't mention you, know that I'm thinking about you, apply for a look no further slip from fistuk send it to rls, and meet us at our booth at Tipple 2. Keep on keepin' on Insiders, Great day to be alive!