Monday, October 29, 2007

Flickr Fetishists

Seth sandwich
Originally uploaded by Mirka23

I can't decide if it's amusing or creepy when someone who clearly has a fetish marks one of my photos as a favorite on flickr. Let me point out that the photos in question are all definitely non-sexual. The first time I noticed this was with this photo I took at a friend's magic show. Three people added this as a favorite, and when I looked at other favorite photos by these users, I found that they were nearly all photos of women wearing boots, or stepping on someone, and sometimes the boot was being licked.

The next one to get this kind of attention was a scanned photo of me and a friend, about 10 years old, wearing shorts and knee socks. This was favorited by two people, one of whom seems to have a fetish about knees and/or shins, the other of whom seems to have a more specific children-wearing-knee-sock fetish. This is definitely more on the side of full blown "creepy." Enough so that I keep trying to tell myself that maybe there's some other explanation for having tagged 122 "favorite" photos of sports teams, class photos, and other little boys and girls wearing knee socks. This one creeps me out enough that I'm not even going to link to the photo.

The latest is kind of the most amusing. I love watches, and I seem to be particularly drawn to watches that are kind of impractical (in other words, hard to read for some reason or another). I took a bunch of photos of them, and created a flickr set. Last year, one watch/wrist fetishist left some comments on one of the photos. That account has since been deleted. But recently another person has taken up the thread. Who knows, maybe it's the same person. All I know for sure is that he (I know, I'm being presumptive here) has 465 favorite photos of women's wrists, arms and hands. Many of them wearing a watch or bracelet.

The weird thing about these watch people (if they are in fact two different people) is that both of them have tried to engage me in participate in their fetish activity. None of the others left comments, but both of these people not only left comments, but also asked me something along the lines of "Do you have any other watches?" The recent one peppers in some innocuous seeming compliments about the beauty of the watch, and the wrist it is on, but I'm not falling for it. If you must fetishize my watches, people, you'll have to do it on your own.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Geek = Sucker

I am pissed off at Geek Monthly magazine. For some reason they think it's ok to punish their early adopter readers.

See, I bought the first two issues of the magazine. It wasn't brilliant literature, but it covered a lot of the kinds of things that I like, and it looked pretty slick. So I bought a subscription - $39.95 for a year, which was six isues (see, despite being called Geek Monthly, the magazine was only coming out bi-monthly). The first issue I received in my sub was issue #3. It arrived so much later than it appeared on the stands that I had already bought a copy at the store, but that's not entirely their fault, I suppose.

However, at the same time they announced that they were truly going monthly, and I immediately noticed that the new subscription price was $39.95 for 12 issues. Surely they'd give me the rate that was active when I received my first issue, right?

Issue #4 came out. Then, for no apparent reason, the next issue was considered a double issue. It was the exact same size, but numbered issue 5/6. Inexplicably, issue #7 was only given out to people who went to Comic Con, and somehow I missed it. Oh wait, apparently you can also get it with the final issue of some magazine called Rocket... but it wasn't sent out to subscribers of Geek Monthly. So the next issue I got was issue #8. Where I learned that the subscription price has now gone down to $19.95 for a year (12 issues).

Now, it's come to my attention that issue #9 came out last week. I haven't received my copy yet, and that reminded me that I should check on the status of my subscription. Tried sending an email via the link on their site marked "For questions about your subscription to Geek Monthly." The email bounced. No phone numbers listed on the site, but there is one in the magazine. So I called today.

I tell the woman on the phone my situation, and she tells me that the reason I didn't get issue #7 is: "it doesn't exist." (And yet they have the audacity to use the cover on their subscription card, above). She also informs me that my subscription is up "with the last issue." Let me recap - I've received 4 issues:

  • #3 (which I had already bought)
  • #4
  • #5/6
  • #8
For which I paid $39.95. That means I've paid $10 an issue. That's 166% of the cover price. And 625% of the current subscription price! That is completely screwed up.

Oh, she offered me the option to renew my subscription at half price - only $9.99 for another year. Are you kidding me? I explained that this was ridiculous, and they absolutely had to extend my subscription. She put me on hold for a while so she could talk it over with her manager. Eventually she came back and said that my subscription has been extended to March. "How many issues is that?" I asked. "Eight," she said, "it's a year." So... basically, I'm getting 2 extra issues (over the original six I was supposed to get).

I should have pushed this further, but I was at work, I was already having a really crappy day, I had already spent too much time on the phone with this woman, and I had to meet with people about work-related things.

So, I concede this round, Geek Monthly magazine. But I will be calling again. And you should probably keep in mind that your dissatisfied customers are exactly the kinds of people who would complain about it in their blogs.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

America's Next Top Drunken Ho

This evening I went out with some friends from work. Someone mentioned that we were seeing a lot of really weird people out, doing weird things. What I saw when I was on my way home topped all the others.

On my block, there was a group of about 6 drunk chicks, standing around what looked like a discarded bar stool. Two of them had taken off their jackets and shirts and were posing together, in their bras, on the stool. A third chick was taking their picture. I had to step over the pile of clothes on the ground and walk through this group in order to get to my apartment. They seemed about to wrap up, but as I walked through the chick with the camera says, "Oh, Karen's here! You ready Karen?"

I looked at her and said, "uh, no" and kept going. Honestly, they kinda freaked me out a little.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

The OC's Bagel Cutter

This evening at my mom's we were sitting around talking when the topic turned to TV. My sister's boyfriend, Luke, admitted that he kind of enjoyed The O.C., having recently watched an entire season on DVD with Carla. For some reason I can't recall I mentioned the bagel cutter a few times and Luke asked me why I was talking about that. Carla was mystified as well. I said something along the lines of...

Well, the father is this Jewish guy from New York and he married a blonde Californian woman, but they love to eat bagels and that represents how he holds on to his roots. Plus everyone's always meeting up first thing in the morning and talking about important things and having a bagel. It's a very unique and pivotal item in their household.

Then Carla got caught up in the discussion and took it one step further, pointing out that the bagel cutter takes this very New York thing and adds a weird Orange County twist - a specially designed contraption, as if they can't just cut a bagel with a knife, like a normal person would.

Luke looked kind of surprised and amused and asked if I had thought about this bagel cutter a lot, or if I had read about it on blogs or something. I said neither, though I was aware that the bagel cutter was a beloved and significant object on the show, I came up with this analysis about it on the fly. I don't know if he believed me.