I have to be careful with this post, because I don't want people to think that I've fallen off of the deep end or that I am into conspiracy theories, but here goes: I'm almost convinced that our phones are monitored MORE than the tech companies admit. Is my phone listening to me?

After work today, I drove by Academy and Dick's to look at fishing rods and reels. I didn't purchase one, thinking that I would do some research online when I got home.

On the way home my sigo called, so I pulled into a parking lot to speak with her for a few minutes (I had the top off of the Jeep, and there's too much wind for a hands-free call).

While we were talking, I mentioned to her that I had gone to Academy and to Dick's looking for fishing gear - specifically, a rod and reel.

When I got home, I opened up my computer to the dashboard of this website (the "back end" as we call it; the pages that allow us to type up these posts), and, right there on my company's page (a page that the average person can't access, btw - you must have a password) is an ad for rods and reels. Not just any advertisement for rods and reels, but an Academy advertisement.

Am I just being paranoid? Is it a Christmas Miracle, or just a coincidence?

I read that Google has access to over 70% of all credit card and debit transactions in the United States, and that "the internet" knows so much about our activities that it can pretty much guess correctly the items in which we would show interest.

Can it be coincidence? Or is it a coincidence that I am paranoid AND they hit me right in the bull's eye with their marketing?

It's instances like these that make me want to throw all of the "smart" stuff away.