Sunday, November 04, 2007

More (Mis)Adventures In Craigslistland
(originally posted at

Reply to:
Date: 2007-11-01, 6:14PM PDT

Hey, guys. It's me again. However, it seems like the message ain't exactly getting through, because yet again, crap with varying level of usefulness is littered where it really doesn't belong. C'mon. It's NOT THAT HARD. Regardless of its state, there are proper channels to get rid of your crap. If it's not usable, send it to the local dump or recycling facility yourself. If it's still usable, donate it to charity. Heck, even put up a notice on the community bulletin board. Or better yet, use Craigslist. Last time I did this, two out of three items were gone in less than 12 hours.

Yes, I'll admit that some of these items are quite sizeable, and without a car, it makes it a bit of a pain in the butt to cart around. But even still, local charities will actually pick some of this stuff up for you IF YOU ASK.

Look people. Even if your mom does live here (which she might), it's still YOUR responsibility to clean up after yourself. Dumping it wherever the heck you feel will not only raise the ire of your neighbours and the strata, but will also mean that the strata garbage pickup guys will charge us more for it.

Up for grabs is the following.

1. Bookshelf. It might be made out of wood, or it might be made out of particle board with paper covering to vaguely resemble wood. The thing is pretty tall and wide, so it'll hold a lot of books. Or, it'll hold a lot of picture frames and figurines. Or, you can take it apart and use it for firewood. I don't frickin' care, just get it out of here.

UPDATE: The bookshelf is actually made out of aluminum, painted to merely look like wood. But that's kinda moot because somebody already has picked this up, so it's gone. Thanks, Telly! You rock!

2. Cat exercise gym. I'm guessing this thing is used, and most likely has residual traces of whatever cat used it (I won't go into graphic details...this is a family website). If you Febreeze or bleach the hell out of it, it might be clean enough for your cat (but all those extra chemicals might give you cancer). But, you know how finicky cats can be. Failing that, you might be able to turn it into some crazy art project. Spray paint and sparkles not included.

3. Acer CRT monitor. I don't even know if this thing works. If it does, hey, free monitor. If it doesn't, you can convert it into a fish tank or you can use it as a prop in an independent student film if you're doing a remake of "Office Space" (although yes, I know that they used a copier). I don't care what you do with it, really. As long as it's legal (although if you're using it on your computer to download MP3s, I *GUESS* that's okay).

Like last time, I cannot and will not vouch for the quality or workmanship of any of this stuff, nor will I be held responsible for anything that happens as a result of you picking this stuff up. If your cat pulls up a random staple from the cat gym and requires emergency veterinary surgery, that is YOUR problem. If the bookshelf collapses and destroys a priceless China set, I don't care. If you actually attempt to turn the CRT monitor into a fish tank and you forget to unplug it and get electrocuted, lemme know so I can inform the guys who give out the Darwin Awards.

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Saturday, November 03, 2007

Survival of the (Un)Fittest

"Mensa membership exceeding, tell me why and how are all the stupid people breeding."

"The Idiots Have Taken Over", by NOFX

While watching Akeelah and the Bee, I started thinking about the current education system and how much it is preparing children for life outside of school. Technology has had a large impact over education, both positive and negative. Technology means that kids have the potential to learn at a geometric rate (kinda like Skynet), but at the same time learn facts without fundamentals. And, they don't really know how to spell.

During my time on, between meeting people, I was on the message boards. One particular group was dedicated to profile reviews. Given my current occupation and school background, I took it upon myself to review people's profiles, partly for general appeal to target audience, but more often than not, for grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

The most common spelling mistake I would point out is "a lot." The number of times I was correcting it was highly indicative of several things, one being the low level of spelling skills among an unfortunate percentage of the users on that site. The other being lack of motivation to read and do some level of edits before submitting for review.

I'm not sure if it's just overuse of spellcheckers that have caused this (why bother learning to spell when MS Word is going to automatically correct it for you?). Either that, or it's severely de-emphasized in the school system. However, I can still recall 10th Grade English class, where the teacher was STILL telling us the difference between "a lot" (a large quantity) and "allot" (to distribute or mete out).

Um...isn't that something that you're supposed to have nailed in THIRD GRADE?

Spelling gaffes are a surefire way to blow credibility in anything, whether it be a resumé, visual presentation, or advertisement. I'm still thinking of a public service ad on the bus where they actually used "who's" (contraction for "who is") instead of "whose" (possessive article).

Stuff like this truly makes me feel better about my level of job security, given the fact that there will always be a "need" for it. But, being that no one notices spelling until something is spelled wrong, it doesn't necessarily mean that anyone will appreciate it.

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