Stand-in Pet Shop: the Direct Product-Exposure Marketing

Is this YOUR dog?

Pet-Cart of Dogs

I was driving in Beirut today, and I saw this.Now, it is not the first time I see this pet-shop stand-in, or perhaps, pet-cart is a more accurate term. Regularly, this man parks his car – it is not always a Jeep – to display small-sized white dogs, for sale. Take the upper road parallel to the Ramlet el Baida coast, and chances are you will know exactly what I am talking about. On the days our salesman declares as business days, the dogs spend the whole afternoon, if not the whole day, come rain or sun, on a car’s roof with no food, no water, and without the ability to move much.I have heard from reliable sources that these dogs are stolen. Now, before jumping to conclusions, let’s analyze the odds:

  1. the dogs reportedly seen are all white – which is, as far as I understand, a very sought-after color for animals,
  2. most of them seem to have had some kind of haircut in the past
  3. most of them are bichons, or bichon-type dogs,
  4. they are sold without any kind of documents, and no hints as to where they are from or if they have had their shots.

As much as I would like to have faith in this man and his honest possible intentions of joining pet-less households with houseless pets, the odds seem very likely that these dogs are, indeed, stolen.In the past few months, I have heard of dog thefts – dog snatching – occurring at an increasingly alarming rate. Dogs are perceived as an easy ‘product’ when it comes to turn-over and traceability, and this follows from an opinion of animals shared by the majority of the people in this society as ‘products, goods, stuff you own’. When paralleled with these people’s idea of walking dogs as included in a foreign housekeeper’s job description, it is easy to make some inference*.

Please help return these pets to their loved ones by sharing…

* an increasing number of people have been reporting their dogs being stolen, and it is especially the case when these dogs are usually walked by a housekeeper who is, one must agree, less likely to be thought able to defend herself as she does not speak the language and is not in her comfort zone.

Happy New Year: Take the Jump!

Children playing in the sand at Lido Beach: Sarasota, Florida

[mp3_embed playlst="" colors="#1F55B2" id="2" nums="2"]Boy, was this year was full of surprises or what?Some of us found out what they really wanted to do, some of us decided to say yes – others to say no, some of us had their first child, and some of us decided this was their last stop. We all learned something. And hopefully, we all made real choices. Real choices that we are very excited to carry with us into this new year.And this is the time when we mostly reassess the year that has passed. Have you changed? Did you finally quit smoking? Did you lose weight? Are you happy? I sure hope you are.The truth is, the advent of a New Year is rarely accompanied by a total redistribution of Life’s cards. But, who cares? What is most important is that you feel excited about it. The cards are in your hands, after all. Continue reading

Learning from Others’Mistakes

Ever been in a situation where you stopped to think: “How would I have reacted if this was my client at my workplace?”Ever, then, thought to yourself that mistakes that big are not likely to occur where you work, and how you go about doing what you do?The truth is, when we step out of the office, most of us become the ‘random detached client’ who demands the minimum standard of ‘user experience’ wherever he or she goes. This translates to the client getting what he or she has paid for, and being treated with courtesy. The client also expects the company to keep its promises; in the sense that if you advertise as the provider of ‘everything you might ever ask for’, I expect to find a pretty wide range of things that would fool me enough to fall for that idiom. The random detached client is that person who does not care if you are having a bad day, if there are way too many people you need to serve, or if you just ran out of the product you are known to serve best (like, salmon, at Japanese restaurants). But here is the catch: the random detached client is perhaps one of the easiest to impress. It’s right there in the name – detached. If you manage to impress that person, you have gained a customer.So, when those of us who have office jobs leave the office and become clients, how often do we think that we have earned the right to ‘not be too understanding’? Very often. It is only natural. Continue reading

Honey, you’re home!

Hi! I’ve just moved my blog from to I wanted all the goodies, so a few FTP tricks here and there, quite a bit of confusion, and two or three moments of low blood pressure later, and there we were, home.All seems fine and dandy, however, all my images appear absolutely humongous. I’m very sorry for that. So, promise ;) I will work on fixing it tomorrow.

Jean-Michel Jarre at Beirut Souks

Yesterday, someone very dear surprised me with two front-row seats tickets to Jean-Michel Jarre’s concert. Jarre is one of those musicians/performers/producers who knows everything and anything about the concerts he does, using lights, laser, and fireworks to supplement his already captivating shows (more about him).Initially, I had not intended to go. But once the previous arrangements subsided, and once presented with the tickets, I had no excuse to miss out on the concert. Continue reading