June 18th, 2008

Please Stand By

We here at MadMup.com are experiencing technical difficulties. The hard drive in my computer has died, and none of my attempts to salvage it have been successful. Yes, it happens to computer guys, too. And all those times you’ve been told by a computer guy to “back up your stuff”? They don’t do it like they ought to, either. It wouldn’t be that bad except for the year and half of digital pictures stored on the drive that I can’t get back.


So, yeah, I’ll be back when I can be. Feel free to read through the archives in the meantime.

April 18th, 2008

Who Needs Tote Bags?

Pledge drives produce conflicting feelings in me, and I can’t be the only one. I’m talking specifically about the pledge drives that radio stations do, as I rarely run across the TV ones, and even more specifically about a station here in town. I realize that non-profit stations need to raise money somehow, but there has to be a better way, doesn’t there?

Most of the chatter they do to try to convice you to chip in can be pretty much summed up in the last thing Kramer says in this quote from an episode of Seinfeld entitled “The Pledge Drive“:

Nana: Hello, I’d like to speak with Jerry. This is his grandmother.

Kramer: Oh, uh, Nana. Hello.

Nana: Tell Jerry I’m sorry, I’m going to have to write him some new checks.

Kramer: As long as you’ve got your checkbook out, how about forking a little over to PBS? You watch the station, don’t you? You don’t want to be a freeloader.

Here’s this station that I’ve been sort of nonchalantly listening to when BAM! – pledge drive week. Now, rather than just listening, I’m being confronted with the fact that by not chipping in, I’m being an awful, awful person.

Sure, I realize this sort of thing is a necessity. It’s nice to not have to hear commercials all the time, and the people that work at the station should get paid for what they do. In fact, there was a time in my life where I really wanted to work in radio. I still wonder every now and again if I’d have been any good at it. So I can understand that part of it.

But the hassling! These normally friendly people are saying things like “Only 5% of our listeners have donated” and “If you’re not a part of this, you’re missing out” and all it sounds like to me is a couple of knuckle-cracking thugs looking around and saying, “Nice radio you got here. Be a shame if anything happened to it.”

So I’m equal parts ashamed and annoyed, the first because I can’t bring myself to donate and the second because I can’t bring myself to stop listening to them badger me. I’m some sort of sadistic freeloader, which seems like a contradiction in terms.

The good thing is that the pledge drive is over now. I guess we’ll see if there’s still a station to listen to in a month.

October 12th, 2007


My apartment complex has recently come under new management. In the week since, I have received three letters from them, all taped to my front door. Whenever I see one of these upon arriving home, I check to make sure that other people have them, too, as I always suspect I’m being evicted: “Dear sir, the combination of your evil cat and your propensity to keep respectable hours has made you unfit for our complex and you are forthwith being asked to find another place of residence.”

Earlier this week the letter taped to the door said something about them repaving the parking lot, so I’d need to find another place to park on Friday and Saturday. This makes no sense to me. Why pave a parking lot on a weekend? Isn’t that the most likely time for people to need parking? And it’s not like there’s a plethora of parking in the area, either. I suspect that if I park in the Domino’s lot a half-mile away that I’ll get towed, and there aren’t too many other options.

Yesterday there was another letter and… well, I’m not too sure what it means:

During the beginning of the road resurfacing we found it needed extensive repairs. As of Friday October 12, 2007 you will need to move your car. the company working on the road will notify us when the cars need moved. Sorry for the inconvenience. We will notify you as soon as we are made aware of the date. [Minor detail deleted] Also we will be notifying you because we will be painting the doors soon.

That’s a direct quote. Any thoughts on this one? I thnk I’ve been notified, but apparently I will be notified again. I’m also not sure how I’ll know when the doors are painted, because I’m not sure where they’re going to leave the note.

I already didn’t like apartment living, and this isn’t helping.