Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Open Letters to Stupid People, Part 2: Daisy Johny, Who Is Applying For a Loan In Charlotte

Honestly, I didn't think this was going to have to be a series.

Dear Daisy Johny Who Is Applying For a Loan In Charlotte,

Did you really think this was a good idea? Do you honestly hate receiving email so much that you would arrange to have your financial information sent to a total stranger, just to keep your inbox pristine? Or are you perhaps just so stupid that when you were typing in the address for where to send your login name and password, you totally forgot to check the spelling?

(By the way, I agreed to the user terms for you. Hope you don't mind. I also set your security question.)

Granted, the bank you chose (Bajaj Finserv) is slightly more attuned to your need for privacy than you are, and they won't give the total stranger you sent your password to total access to all of your personal and financial info, unless she knows your birthdate, which is nice of them. But they did give me your phone number, so I guess I could just call you up and ask.

In short: Seriously. Just accept the occasional email, would you?

The Person Whose Email Address You Used

p.s. Your loan was approved.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Top Gear's Take Your Car to Work Day

 From the intensely amusing British car show Top Gear (Now on Netflix streaming!), a trip to work in the world's smallest car. I saw this two days ago and it's still making me giggle at random intervals. Particularly at the part where he drives past the newscast.


Monday, August 29, 2011

You Know How It Is

A couple of the SOBs I have to work with:

What? It's Monday.

Friday, August 26, 2011

What Would You Name Them?

I don't have any faith with my ability with fish tanks-- I can barely keep an african violet alive on my desk. But if I did, and I happened to have $350 lying around and some space in the living room, I would totally get this personal jellyfish tank:

Isn't that amazing? Don't tell me that's not amazing.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Department of Story Ideas: The Meat-Eaters

The Inspiration:
A conversation over lunch during which someone mentioned ongoing efforts to create lab-grown meat. Apparently, it needs to be kept moving by the application of electrical shocks in order to develop properly. You see where I am going with this.

The Story:
As above, with some minor variations. Rather than using muscle cells directly from domestic pigs, the researchers choose a hardier variety of wild boar, genetically crossed with goose for flavor. In addition to the electricity the pieces of meat are given rudimentary nerve systems to increase their mobility and improve their texture and the ability to digest a variety of food sources so that manufacturers can alter the feed according to material prices. Everything is going great, until one night, when the power goes out to the feeding tanks and the meat gets hungry. . .

The Pitch:
It's Jurassic Park meets bacon.

The Tagline:
"Dinner is coming. . . for you!"

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Shoesday: For Whom the Belle Ships

Hey, I said I was stocking up.

Acquired: One pair of shiny black Belle by Sigerson Morrison flats, as a guard against the coming flatpocalypse. They'll be perfect once I add the padded heel inserts necessary for my bony mutant heels from trying to chew their way to freedom, and blisters.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Are You Pondering What I'm Pondering?

Science Tip of the Day:

When applied to dry ice, 70% ethanol does not remain liquid.

I does, however, provide you with the means to make the World's Nastiest Snowball.

Science: Providing you with information you can use, but probably shouldn't.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

"Fancy": A Revisionist Version

You know how sometimes there's a song you really kind of like, but you can't stand to listen to it because the lyrics are basically about how if you're a poor woman all you're really good for is prostitution? Well, for me, Reba McEntire's "Fancy" is that song. I have to admit, the chorus is very catchy, and she sings it with conviction, but I just can't get past the fact that the story she's telling is basically, "We were poor, so when I was a teenager my mom told me my only chance in life was to sell myself to men, so I did and now everything turned out great." Which doesn't strike me as the most woman-positive message you could send, so I thought I'd try my hand at fixing it up.

By Raymond Douglas Davies
(Additional lyrics by Daisy James)

I remember it all very well lookin' back
It was the summer I turned eighteen
We lived in a one room, rundown shack
On the outskirts of New Orleans
We didn't have money for food or rent
To say the least we had no loot
Then Mama spent every last penny we had
To buy me an interview suit

Mama washed and combed and parted my hair
And she told me to stand up straight
Then I stepped into my brand new suit
That was pinstriped and charcoal gray
It was a linen-blend and it fit me good
Standin' back from the lookin' glass
There was a job candidate where a half grown kid had stood

She said here's some nice pants Fancy don't let me down
Here's the number for the jobs board Fancy don't let me down

Mama picked up my new notepad
And she kissed my cheek
Then I saw the tears wellin' up in her troubled eyes
When she started to speak
She looked at a pitiful shack
And then she looked at me and took a ragged breath
She said your Pa's run off and I'm real sick
And the baby's gonna starve to death

She handed me a heart shaped locket that said
Illegitimi non carborundum
And nodded as I threw away
My wad of chewing gum
It sounded like somebody else that was talkin'
Askin' Mama what do I do
She said be nice to the administrative assistants Fancy
And they'll be nice to you

She said here's the classifieds section Fancy don't let me down
Here's your Monster account Fancy don't let me down

Just remember everything I've taught you,
because if you want out
Well it's up to you
Now don't let me down you better start
movin' uptown

Well, that was the last time I saw my Ma
The night I left that rickety shack
The welfare people came and took the baby
Mama died and I ain't been back

But the wheels of fate had started to turn
And for me there wasn't time to lose
And it wasn't very long 'til I was waiting
In a temp agency in my sensible shoes

I knew what I had to do and I made myself this solemn vow
That I's gonna be successful someday
Though I didn't know when or how
I couldn't see spending the rest of my life
Playing a sucker's game
You know, I might have been born just plain white trash
But Fancy was my name

Here's your company dossier Fancy don't let me down
Here's your annual reports Fancy don't let me down

It wasn't long after that I got a job
Filing papers and printing spreadsheets
And one week later I was a permanent employee
In a five room office suite

I worked late, on weekends
Got a night-school MBA
Then I got me a nice apartment
And an off-lease Cabriolet
And I ain't done bad

Now in this world there's a lot of small-minded people
Who'd never think I could achieve
And criticize Mama for telling me
No matter what, always believe

But though I ain't had to worry 'bout nothin'
For nigh on fifteen years
I can still hear the desperation in my poor
Mama's voice ringin' in my ear

She said, here's your one chance Fancy don't let me down
Here's your one chance Fancy don't let me down
Don't let folks tell you, you can't do
'Cause if you want out, well it's up to you
Now don't let me down
Your Mama's gonna send you uptown

Monday, August 08, 2011

Where's Tomato?

There is exactly one fully ripe fruit on this plant. Can you spot it?

Sunday, August 07, 2011

Great Moments In Marketing Idiocy

Sometimes you come across a new product that is so apt, so perfect in its service to the market, that you marvel that it hadn't been invented earlier. And sometimes you see an ad for designer patterned maxi pads.

Insane? Yes. But bear in mind, it could be worse.

Friday, August 05, 2011

How About I Just Dislike You Because Your Song is Boring?

Apparently, we're doing pop songs based on irritating eighties advertising catchphrases now:

I can't wait for "Where's the Beef [Dance Remix]"

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Shoesday: The Wrong Goodbye

If there is one truth in life, it is that loss is the only constant. So it is with inappropriately maudlin blog post openings, and so also with shoe brands. One of my favorites, Sigerson Morrison (along with its spinoff line, Belle) has just fired its founders/designers/namesakes, and I am moving ahead with the assumption that it will not be the same again. And by "moving ahead" I mean "hoarding examples of the current line like they're sheets of plywood and a hurricane is coming." Which was made easier by the fact that virtually everything on their website is marked down by 70%, though it turns out that the stated availability is somewhat deceptive.*

There are, of course, other shoes in the store. But what I loved about the Sigerson Morrison line was that they could manage to be cool and different without veering off into outright lunacy**, and that is something I suspect they will not be able to maintain under the new corporate management.

On the plus side, I may have a slightly easier time holding on to my money.

*This post was going to go up yesterday, except that I had just started writing it when I learned that the majority of my order would not be shipped to me because they did not actually have those items in stock, despite the fact that they were still listed on the site, and I was too annoyed to feel like writing something praising their style.
**Well, mostly.