Thursday, July 31, 2008

Filesharing Deal

Cory Doctorow: Filesharing Deal Will Drive Swapping Underground

Cory Doctorow says it well and succinctly. This deal circumvents the law, and punishes us:
...the new scheme allows ISPs and their pals in the record industry to randomly shake up your connection like a snow-globe, dropping some or all of your services – whether you're using your VoIP phone to speak to your dying granny in Australia or downloading the latest hit single from the guy who did the "Crazy Frog Song".

Sounds like fun when you're in a Rift Raid in LOTRO...


Saturday, July 19, 2008

(Finally!) Some Pics from England

I'm finally starting to get film developed from my trip to England last year.

I have lots'n'lots more film to go, but at least this is a start.

I'm not done tweaking descriptions -- as I go through notes and check my guides, I'm liable to add much more detail. And you will notice I am just slightly fond of castles...


Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Bragging on a Friend

I just have to brag on a friend of mine. We've been writing buddies for years, sharing stories, and critting and proofing each other's work.

She was approached by a new zine starting up, and asked if she had any short fiction. So she dusted off an old piece and submitted it. They not only liked it, but asked for more, so she'll be doing a short series, continuing the storyline began here:

Bitter Chivalry

Congrats, Shannon!


another work story

Remember I shared a story or two from my experiences working in an electronics store?
Okay. This one is a doozy. I recall it vividly, and although I can't guarantee every word is remembered verbatim, it's doggoned close.

My hands splayed on the glass counter, and I wished I could draw the coolness of it into myself to keep me calm as I watched the irate customer enter the store and approach carrying a store bag. You could almost see the steam coming out her ears.

So much for an uneventful Monday evening.

She dumped the contents of the bag on the counter with malicious glee. Parts scattered across the glass top and I swept them all back into a pile before they tumbled to the floor.

"May I help you?" I asked, smiling my sweetest smile, but inside I was disgusted; she had not even tried to put the telephone back into the box neatly. Thanks, lady, more work for me.

"Yes, you can give me my money back! This phone is no good. I let it charge all weekend, and it still won’t work!"

I did not know, still do not know, how affective my sweet and cheerful attitude is, but I used it anyway. It was better than sighing in resignation at the situation. Or crying. Or running out the back door screaming and tearing my hair.

"Let me just check it out," I said soothingly, smiling apologetically. "Company policy. I have to inspect every return. It’ll only take a minute."

I did not fume aloud that it would have been easier if she had neatly repacked the bloody telephone in the box so I could quickly inventory it. Returns must include the receipt, the original box and packing, and all contents. Returns or exchanges for defective merchandise require that I test the original item purchased, if possible.

"Just give me my money and check the phone later. I’m tired of dealing with you people! You’re a rip off, that’s what you are! I was without a phone all weekend because of this defective piece of junk!"

"I’m sorry, Ma’am. It will only take a moment," I replied calmly, but she continued her barrage. I gritted my teeth as I pawed through pile in front of me.

Then...something caught my eye, jumbled among the wires and accessories—a clear, sealed plastic bag. I held it up. "Ma’am, the phone charges better if you insert the battery."