Aug 052011

I get a lot of e-mails from blog readers and Gypsy Journal subscribers.  Some of those e-mails tell me about new places we should visit, or share our readers’ experiences at places they visited after reading our stories about them. Others offer suggestions about ways I can improve the blogs, or things we can do to make our RV rallies better. Still other readers write to ask questions about the RV lifestyle, or why we do things the way we do.

Whatever the topic, I always appreciate hearing from all of you, and I  try hard to answer each e-mail as soon as possible. But I have to admit, sometimes I just don’t know how to respond. There is a thin line I sometimes walk between trying to figure out a way to give a polite reply, and wanting to let Bad Nick do my talking for me.

For example:

Q. Do you know of any free campgrounds with full hookups in moderate climates where we can stay on a long term basis; an entire season or year around?

A. No, but if you find one, please ask if they have a spot for me too.

Q. I’m from Europe, where the RVs are much  smaller. Why do you Americans insist on buying such big RVs?

A. Have you seen some of us? We need big RVs!

Q. I was at an American Coach rally a while back, where the factory had techs on hand to do repairs for free or at low coast, which was a big hit. As a goodwill gesture, have you thought about absorbing some of the costs of repairs attendees have done at your rallies?

A. No, but I have thought about asking our rally attendees to pick up some of the costs of keeping my motorhome running, as a goodwill gesture. 

Q. Why do RV parks charge you to use their dump station if you are not staying there? It doesn’t cost them anything.

A. Well, if you don’t count the cost of purchasing the property, building the RV park, the cost of maintaining the RV park, taxes, employee wages, wear and tear on their infrastructure, and a couple of dozen things I forgot to mention, you’re right, it doesn’t cost the RV park owner anything at all!

Q. Your subscription rates (or prices of your books; or charges for your RV rallies) are too high. Do you have discounts for people on fixed incomes?

A. You have a fixed income? Can you fix mine, because it’s broken and never reaches far enough to make ends meet!

Q. You have two rallies a year, eastern and western. Why not a third one that floats around to different parts of the country?

A. Mostly because I’d like to stay married. Miss Terry insists on having a day or two off every year in which we’re not busy planning a rally, running a rally, getting an issue ready to send to the printer, or mailing the issue out to our subscribers.

Q. Why do mobile RV techs charge so much ? I had one come out to work on our water heater. All he did was make an adjustment or two, and he charged me $75!

A. Actually, he only charged you $15 to make those adjustments. The other $60 was for knowing what adjustments to make.

Q. Why do I have to pay the same price for a digital edition as a printed one? It doesn’t cost you anything to print and mail out a digital copy.

A. Mostly because I need to support this lavish lifestyle of mine. And because some subscribers try the digital edition for a while and want to switch back to printed, or vice versa. We also have snowbirds who want the printed version when at home, and the digital when traveling. I’m not smart enough to figure out how much to charge when they switch back and forth.

And then we have this one, which came in yesterday in response to my comments about waking up with back pain.

Q. Not to be rude, but do you think if you lost 50 or 75 pounds, that might not help your back?

A. Gee, why would I think that was rude? If I lost that much weight, my clothes wouldn’t fit any more, and I’d have to stay in bed or walk around nekkidd.

But here is my all time favorite, from several years ago, and my reply:

Q. Are you and Terry married? I ask because you often refer to her as “Miss Terry.” I want to subscribe to your paper, but as a born again Christian, it would offend me to send my money to people who are living in sin.

A. Yes, Terry and I have been happily married for years. I call her “Miss Terry” as a term of respect and affection. But please, DO NOT send me your money, because I can absolutely guarantee you that sooner or later, I’m going to do or say something that will offend you! It’s only a matter of time.

Thought For The Day – Only our individual faith in freedom can keep us free.

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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  26 Responses to “How Do You Answer These?”

  1. Thanks for the laughs! 🙂

  2. Funny stuff. Thanks. A couple expressions come to mind, “You can’t fix stupid” and moreover, “You can’t make this stuff up!”

    It would be fine to assume that most folks will say or ask something from behind their keyboard that they wouldn’t when speaking face to face (and this is something that drives me nuts about the internet, but let’s not go there) but the fact of the matter is, I’m pretty sure I’ve met some of these people, and they’re just as dim in person….
    It’s sad really.

    Silence is usually the best reply, but I liked your answers.

    Keep it between the ditches.


  3. Great blog! You are so clever!!

  4. Nick,

    I imagine that opening you emil box is like the line from Forrest Gump: My momma always said, “Life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.”

    Further comment — the lack of intellignece is appaling.

  5. i-n-t-e-l-l-i-g-e-n-c-e

    old fingers don’t work too well

  6. Too funny!

  7. Nick, you are PRICELESS. Love you and your responses.

  8. Loved the blog today!

  9. Just goes to show you that idiots are still a plenty in this great country.

  10. Im kinda insulted that none of my questions made your top 10 list – maybe you like me after all.

  11. Todays post was marvelous – all those things we want to say but are (darn it) too polite. Thank goodness for Bad Nick.

  12. I always enjoy your blogs and read them with my coffee every morning. Today’s made me chuckle. Thanks for the laughs.

  13. They walk amongst us every day and the worst part of that is they also breed!

  14. When I read the first few questions, I thought you had to be taking creative license–no one could have asked such things! But, then I continued down the list and recognized some of the other questions/comments (such as the one from yesterday’s blog) and realized that they all had to be true. Takes all kinds–and gives the rest of us a laugh to observe them. 😀

  15. No wonder we’ve had problems with some of the people we park next to! We once had a “caring” neighbor start our campfire and burn our wood while we were away for a couple of hours. OK, it was nice to have it going when we got back, but then don’t go inside your RV right away because it’s chilly out. I should have gave them a bill for the wood they burned up while we were gone. It takes all kinds.

  16. Great answers to those pesky questions. Those questions must really make you wonder about people.

  17. I just don’t understand why some people expect every thing to be FREE. Every working person (technician, campground owner, doctor, attorney, etc) has to make a living. They have to pay bills just as we do. While I appreciate free or a reduced rate, I also understand a reasonable fee for a job well done is not only expected but required to keep the system (economy) functioning.

    All the people who want every thing to be free never seem to do any thing for someone else for free. “Who me?” They say, “I have bills to pay. I need the money.” Oh, really!?!?!?!?!

    Are their brains to let? Did they miss Economics 101? Are they selfish? Are they users? Are they for real? Do they honestly believe the world owes them stuff for free?

    I agree with Muriel, It’s scary to think they walk among us and breed!!!!!!!

  18. “There is no such thing as a stupid question!” Well…you’ve proved that’s a myth.

    We run a fulltime business from our RV and there are always those few people who ask, “Can you reduce your price for me?” Sure…and we’ll reduce the amount of work to reflect that discount!

    Thanks for priceless blog that made me smile.

  19. I don’t know about everybody else but as I age I find myself bugged by stupidity. Is that an aging thing or is the country “dumbing down”?

  20. Loved all your replies. The “born again christian” annoyed me the most. I am a born again christian myself, but I don’t tell everyone that I have to pay for services that it will offend me if they aren’t. I certainly hope the “born again christian” doesn’t think they are sin free.

  21. thank you for such a great blog. After a semi-long drive today to get to our next destination and thanking the computer gods for letting us at least get a signal on the air card that did work among the trees. It was nice to get some humor. Stay safe

  22. Q. I was at an American Coach rally a while back, where the factory had techs on hand to do repairs for free or at low coast, which was a big hit. As a goodwill gesture, have you thought about absorbing some of the costs of repairs attendees have done at your rallies?

    A. No, but I have thought about asking our rally attendees to pick up some of the costs of keeping my motorhome running, as a goodwill gesture.

    Well, I think I certainly do my part!

  23. Quit patting yourself on the back, Greg. It’s been at least two weeks since you’ve fixed anything for me. 🙁

  24. Great blog! I laughed until I cried. Thanks…

  25. I enjoyed your entry today greatly!!!!!!!!!!

  26. Good ones. Just remember, there’s no Constitutional amendment that provides protection from being offended… least yet.

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