Saturday, September 1, 2007

My first book now under my control

I published my first book, Learn to Program with Visual Basic 6, in November of 1998.

The rights to the book were purchased by Apress in July of 2003 when my original publisher, Wrox, went out of business.

In September of 2007 I asked for, and received the rights to the book from Apress, with the intention of self publishing it via own imprint, Smiley Publishing.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Monday, July 9, 2007

Saladworks Reply to my letter of July 6, 2007

I just received this email from Saladworks in response to my letter of July 6, 2007.

I don't know about you, but if I write to the President of a company (which I did) I don't expect a reply back from his R-E-C-E-P-T-I-O-N-I-S-T. However, I must say, the response was pretty prompt (July 9th)

From: Maria Gherman

Dear Mr. Smiley,

Thank you for taking the time to write us. However, I regret to inform you that the regular Honey Mustard dressing will not be part of our menu. We have done extensive research with our dressings, and an overwhelming number of customers preferred the Low Fat Honey Mustard to the regular dressing. We do not like disappointing customers, but we understand we can’t please everyone. I’m sorry to hear you no longer eat at our locations. I hope you give us another chance and choose another dressing from our variety of choices. Thank you once again for your comment.


Maria Gherman Receptionist S A L A D W O R K S
Eight Tower Bridge 161 Washington Street Suite 225Conshohocken, PA 19428Office: 610.825.3080 Fax: 610.825.3280

This email message and any attachments are confidential. If you are not the intended recipient, please immediately reply to the sender and delete the message from your email system. Thank you.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Saladworks Letter concerning their new Fat Free Honey Mustard Dressing

I previously mentioned my distaste (is that a pun) for the new Honey Mustard Saladworks Dressing.

Here's a letter I just placed in the mail.

John D. Smiley
July 6, 2007

Salad Works Incorporated
Eight Tower Bridge
161 Washington Street
Suite 225
Conshohocken, PA 19428

Dear Salad Works:

I’m writing this letter to express my dismay with your new “Low Fat Honey Mustard” Salad Dressing. I am no longer able to get your classic Honey Mustard Salad Dressing, which has been a staple of my BLT salad since my wife introduced me to your restaurant last year.

I primarily patronize your Delran Store (Pat Harrison, Proprietor) and the very helpful employees there tell me, in answer to my complaints and pleading for a return to the classic Honey Mustard, that there is nothing that can be done---that if I want Honey Mustard salad dressing I must endure the tasteless (or should I say horrific tasting) low fat style.

As background, I am a 52 year old male---I run 6 miles in the morning 3 times a week, I’m 6 foot 1 and 160 pounds---I’m in great shape for my age, and I really don’t need Saladworks telling me I need to reduce my calorie content---I have managed my calorie intake very well on my own, thank you!

Your Low Fat Honey Mustard so disgusts my wife and I that we have tried 3 different types since---and have finally settled on your Russian dressing as the only acceptable alternative. Your Russian dressing, by the way, is probably twice the number of characters of your original Honey Mustard---well done!

If you wanted to offer a low-fat version, fine—but why add a dressing and eliminate another one?

According to my records, my family and I visited Saladworks 40 times in 2006, spending $673—this year, so far, we’ve visited 49 times, spending nearly $1,000 (my son and his girlfriend are big fans also). In general, we average two visits per week.

However, it may interest you to know where I ate my dinner on Tuesday and Thursday of this past week---Panera Bread. That’s right, Panera Bread, of Delran. Your policy has sent me to a competitor. Their salads aren’t as good as yours, but their dressing is acceptable.

Businessmen know that it takes ten times the cost to acquire a new customer than it does to retain an existing one—congratulations, you’ve lost one, and if your Low Fat Honey Mustard helps you acquire the ten that it will take to replace me, good luck—I doubt they’ll be as loyal as I was.

Please let me know when you will be once again offering your delicious Honey Mustard Dressing (with the fat). In the meantime, I’ll be at the Delran Panera Bread. You can reach me via email at

Please pass my regards onto my friends at Saladworks of Delran.

Very Truly Yours

John Smiley

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Comcast Digital Voice in Cinnaminson---Problems

Anyone else picking up the 1210AM 50,000 Watts on their Comcast Digital Voice service in Cinnaminson, NJ?

The 1210AM Transmission Tower is about 1/2 mile from my house---in fact, I can it right outside my window as I post this.

Contact me and I'll let you know what Comcast's solution was to my problem.