It Sure Looked Good In The Driveway…

When I was 19 years old and in my second semester of college, I made a impulse decision to buy a sports car on a whim.  Yes, I traded in my reliable car because I thought the sports car would be cool, fast and get me the attention that I thought would be beneficial to me.   Little did I know in that moment of my youthful indiscretion, that purchase would almost literally blow up in my face a few years later.  You see, and please don’t judge, I bought a 1986 Fiero “…’caus it looked cool.”  Now for anyone who knows what a Fiero is, you know it was a disaster of a car.  For anyone that doesn’t know what a Fiero is, it was a disaster of a car.  It was not very fast, it was a mid-engine with hardly any room except for me and a date (probably the reason I bought it if I am completely honest).  It was sleek and had a great stereo system.  But that is about all the benefits it had to offer.  Oh, it looked tough, but as they say here is Texas, “it was all hat and no cattle.”  And to make matters worse, I bought the darn thing not knowing how to drive stick.  Somehow, I got it to my parents’ house where my dad took one look at it, shook his head, smiled in disbelief and proceeded to give me that look that only a son could interpret as “you complete fool!”  Anyway, he took me out that afternoon to learn to drive a stick shift transmission.  Within 4 hours I succeeded…to burn out the transmission.  We had it towed back to my parents’ home where my dad chuckled as he told me, “It’s sure going to look good parked in our driveway.”  He knew it would be parked there for a while because I did not have the $2,000 to fix the transmission.  He was right.  It stayed in the driveway while I bummed rides from friends, rode my bicycle and took the bus.  Anyway, I eventually got it fixed.  It was not cool, it did not get me dates, it was average in speed, it burned up a lot of gas and oil, the paint faded and the girl I was trying to impress at the time (who later became my wife) was not impressed at all.  A few years later, the engine caught fire in front of a paint store with my future wife in the passenger’s seat who gave me the same look my dad gave me.  Long story short, I fell for a “Shiny Object” that I thought would make me great and successful.  That was the mindset of a 19-year-old “complete fool” as my dad and wife implied.

Fast forward more than 30 years later.  I’m looking for an online business where I can have the FREEDOM I want on my terms.  See my first blog post for the context.  I started to do the research and found so many ways to make money online.  There were so many videos, so many posts, so many adds and so many “Shiny Objects” to buy.   Almost everyone came with a promise of untold riches in just a few months.  They said stuff like:

  • Send me $7.00 for a complete blueprint
  • Minimal effort needed
  • Just a few steps to riches
  • Quit your job in just a few months
  • Buy my products [without a mentor or plan]
  • Make your own products and sell them easily
  • Look at my paychecks
  • Retire your spouse by this time next month [again without a plan]
  • Etc…!

I know you’ve seen them.  The videos and adds made it sound so enticing, so easy, so attainable and without much effort or knowledge.  And I almost fell for it.  I was about to hit “buy” on one of these Shiny Objects when my dad’s voice rang loud in my ears.  I could just hear him saying, “buy it, it will look good sitting on your desk, you fool.” So, I hit back space and did not but it.  I am one of the lucky ones that did not fall for the bait.  Instead, I researched and researched.  I read up on reviews and looked at unbiassed testimonials.  I talked with many people in online business programs and came to a solution.  A solution I am so proud to have found.  I found this guy, Dean Holland, who was mentoring a bunch of successful people to help them achieve success on their own terms.  He runs a program called Internet Profits.  I ordered this free book called The IceBerg Effect and read it on a quick plane ride.  I then reread the book.  It did not promise that an online business would be easy.  It promised that with a lot of hard work, a lot of training and the proper mindset I could achieve success over time-NOT OVERNIGHT.  He was the first one to be honest with me.  So, I jumped in and asked him to be my mentor via his program.  More on that in another blog.  And I listened and listened…I did not hear my dad’s voice in my head.  And even more important, my wife was supportive.  The business is Affiliate Marketing, and I am loving every moment of this journey.  Not because I have made a ton of money, yet, but because I am content and free to work hard to get what I want and what I deserve.  I am on my way.  What about you?  Have you fallen for a shiny object?  I hope not.  If so, it’s not too late to do research and find the right object which can lead to the FREEDOM so many of us desire.  If you are interested, please subscribe to my newsletter here for more information.

“Be true to the game, because the game will be true to you. If you try to shortcut the game, then the game will shortcut you. If you put forth the effort, good things will be bestowed upon you. That’s truly about the game, and in some ways that’s about life too.”  – Michael Jordan

“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

And as usual, a few very bad DAD JOKES

Why did the car’s engine break up with the transmission?  It just couldn’t handle the pressure anymore.

 What do you call a car that’s out of gas?  Exhausted!

Until next time, STAY FRESH!


32 thoughts on “It Sure Looked Good In The Driveway…”

  1. I like the car analogy, particularly I think the part about how you did not know how to drive it! Lots of these programs people buy work fine IF you know how to drive them…. unfortunately, many buyers don’t, and they don’t come with an instructor!

    Sounds like you have found the right vehicle for your business and it DOES come with an instructor, so well done and all the best

  2. I loved the car story, it really made me smile. I remember my brother doing something very similar. So funny.
    Good luck on the path, you’ll make a solid trail for people to follow- and they will!

  3. Thanks for the laugh. We don’t really need to impress anybody and your analogy with the car proves it because your wife married you in spite of the car not because of it.

    No matter what, enjoy the ride and learn how to use a clutch. I still wish automatic transmissions weren’t the only choice available when buying a car. That’s how I learned to drive back in the day.

    1. Thanks, Kate! I was lucky to find my wife who was not impressed with the cover of a book but by its content. So many will not know the joy in finding the correct friction point to get from neutral to first gear. This is so much like this business! Thanks for the visit!

  4. Thank you for sharing your story and the valuable lessons learned from past impulsive decisions. It’s inspiring to see how you have taken a more informed and cautious approach in your online business journey, avoiding the allure of “shiny objects” and conducting thorough research to find the right path to success. Your dedication to learning and growth is evident, and it’s great to hear that you are now on a fulfilling journey toward achieving the freedom you desire. Keep up the amazing work, and keep the dad jokes coming!

    1. Thank you, Alison! I was really luck to lean my lesson early in what has value may not be what is on the outside or how fancy it looks. And, I do like a good dad joke! 🙂

  5. Ernie, There is surely a correct plan for success. You and I are in this for substantial payout. When you find the right “vehicle”, that is the time to put the pedal to the metal. We have found , I believe, the right vehicle! Let push forward for the highest success. Thanks for sharing your history.


  6. I love your dad jokes! I’ll keep an eye out for your posts so I won’t miss any of them 🙂

    And, I love affiliate markeitng, it’s an awesome business model for sure.

  7. This is such an important issue, the shiny object syndrome, and the way you avoid it is through research and listening to people who are important in your life.

    In your case, you are super lucky to have that support.

    Loved the Michael Jordan quote. “Be true to the game, because the game will be true to you. If you try to shortcut the game, then the game will shortcut you. If you put forth the effort, good things will be bestowed upon you. That’s truly about the game, and in some ways that’s about life too.”

    A lot of truth and power in that statement.

    Thank you for sharing

    1. Hi Eleanor – Yes, this is super important! Shiny objects are just shiny until they get tarnished. And I agree that support on all fronts is key. Many in my circle may not believe in what I am doing, but I will persist! Cheers and thanks for the visit!

  8. Ernie, I love your story about the car it’s brilliant. I’ve done a similar thing regarding shiny objects and products to do with an affiliate marketing but luckily not with cars. I’m a big petrol head and I know cars really well and I don’t do things on a whim. Having said that I have bought courses and things that promise all sort of stuff and that don’t deliver. You are absolutely right now we’ve got Dean. We’ve got the right product to the right coach and the right process. Very soon you’ll have a flourishing business, I hope. thank you so much all the best thanks, Atif

    1. Atif – Thank you so much for your comments. I envy you that you didn’t make a mistake with cars. 🙂 I am hopeful that our continued persistence will produce dividends. I am also grateful that we are no longer looking for shiny objects but have found a program that works for us. I look forward to both of our success my friend. Cheers, and thanks for the visit!

  9. Hi, Ernie! I love the car example! It is so easy to get sucked into a deal that looks pretty but doesn’t have much to offer, especially in the online world.
    Like you, I did my research and read The Iceberg Effect before investing in anything. Still, my husband continues to hear the promises of get-rich-quick and hints at trying new things. I hope to get my business system in place and running very soon to prove I do know what I am doing.
    As Atif says, we just need to trust the process, and we’ll be up and running soon enough 🙂

    1. Hi Nakina! Thank you so much for your visit and comments. While my wife is supportive, many in my circle may think I am crazy. Possibly so, but I am finding fulfillment so far. Plus, I have made so many friends from afar in this community. Thanks for being one of them!

  10. Quite often we hear to not get caught up in the shiny object syndrome. Nice way to make a shiny object stand out – with a story from over 30 years ago.

    You certainly stress the importance of doing research to find that right object leading to the freedom most of us desire.

    1. I truly appreciate your visit. I feel research is very important. It is sometimes tedious, but so necessary at times when trying to make a good decision. I am glad I did the research to find this program so that I can continue to attempt and persist in making this a successful venture. I wish the best for you, my friend!

  11. Ernie,
    I totally remember the Fiero too – such a cool car, right? It’s funny how sometimes those shiny objects can end up causing more trouble than we expect. Anyway, speaking of staying focused, we must apply that same principle to our current business. We’ve got to stick to the plan and not get distracted by all those tempting new opportunities. Affiliate Marketing may not be a walk in the park, but with some hard work and dedication, it can definitely pay off. Wishing you all the best on this journey!

    1. Hi Sherri! Just writing my latest blog post made me remember a lot of funny things I did in the past as a youth and also as an adult. All of these things are learning opportunities. While buying the Fiero may not have been the best decision, it was a valuable lesson for me and something to look back on as I continued to strive to make good decisions in the future. Thank you so much for your visit and please accept my best wishes!

  12. Oh wow, what a great post… quite a vivid and expensive lesson to learn as a young man. Things are not always as they appear in life; the lesson here is not to buy anything impulsively, and one must always realize that things are usually too good to be true, especially regarding good sales copy. Research has been my best friend for a few years now, and I try hard not to let my impulsive mindset take over my wallet. I can see now that you are on track and will do well because Dean has your best interest in mind.

    1. Hi Vanessa! Yes, it was a good lesson! But also, a good lesson. I have learned so much from it and other stories from my youth and try to apply what I have learned when I make decisions now. The research I did was pretty extensive but I’m glad I did it as I have landed in a very good place with Dean as I’m my mentor and coach. I have also found that I have other mentors in this group as I learn from them, their successes, and their challenges. I truly appreciate your visit!

  13. Ernie
    Everything is so fast-paced in today’s world that it becomes quite easy to be impulsive with things. Buying that car isn’t much different than buying shiny objects online from gurus. They’re all lessons learned in life. The good thing is you found Dean, who I like to refer to as a hidden treasure. We are lucky to have him as our mentor. We all must learn the hard way sometimes, but as long as we learn, that is the key. Thanks for a great post.

    1. Hi Meredith! Yes, yes, yes! Life is so fast and there are so many fast things that cause distractions for us. We’re always looking for the next better thing and sometimes we miss the best thing which is right in front of us. I’m excited to be on this journey, I’m hopeful and I have a lot of faith that this will be successful. I see you also have Dean as your mentor. We made a great choice, right? Thank you for your visit!

  14. Hi Ernie, what a great story. Yes, I can empathise, I hate to admit but I have had the misfortune to fall for a couple of shiny objects myself. Having come across Dean was a revelation; he is a breath of fresh air in terms of his enthusiasm to help people like us. I wish you all success under his guidance.

    1. Hi Andy! Thanks for your visit to my blog. We all have those mistakes in our past that we can learn from, but the important thing is that we learn and not repeat them, right? I agree with your comments on Dean. His energy and enthusiasm is contagious and I find every time I listen to him, I feel I can conquer the world. He is a great mentor. Best wishes, friend!

    1. Hi Kelli – Thank you for your comments and your visit! I find that I like to tell stories to help stress a point, or just get a laugh. Best wishes and again, thank you for coming to my blog.

  15. Ernie, you are a PHENOMENAL and captivating story teller! The Fiero story was absolutely entertaining… and I actually laughed out loud (woke the dog up even). You make an incredible point about the false and overpromises that people in this industry try to tout… It’s very enticing, and similar to you, I almost fell for it too. I’m grateful I decided to seek my counsel elsewhere.
    EXCELLENT blog post, truly. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and how your story provided a practical application to modern-day affiliate marketing. Well done.

    1. Hi Lauren – You’re comments to my blog post absolutely made my week! I do love to tell stories. I don’t know why, but I just try to relate everything to something that I’ve either done or plan on doing and it always seems to make a good story or a good laugh (at least in my head 🙂 ). I follow your blog pretty close. So, your comments that my blog provide practical application is incredibly important to me. Thank you for your visit, and I look forward to both of our successes!

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