Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Let's test out this remote blogger thing, shall we?


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

True Story

So last night I order this .

I get the following email.

Thank you for your recent purchase. We are a third-party reseller on Amazon, and this means we are responsible for shipping the products we offer. If you purchased other products at the same time, then they will be shipped separately, either by Amazon or another third party.

May we ask you some questions regarding your order? NO RESPONSE IS REQUIRED, and we will not delay the shipment of your order if you choose not to respond, but please double-check your order at the very least.

1) Could you please verify your mailing address?


Some customers accidentally specify an older address, causing a delay in delivery. If this happened to you, please reply to this email and include your updated address.

2) Could you please verify the contents of your order?

Order ID: 102-2658043-4919409
Order Date: 21-Feb-2011
Quantity: 1
Description: COMBO Sticky Pad w/Grantwood Logo BLACK
+ FM Transmitter/Car Charger iPad/iPhone/iPod BLACK
Price Each: $ 22.99
Total: $ 22.99
Subtotal: $ 22.99
Sales Tax: $ 0.00
Discount: $ 0.00
Shipping: $ 3.99
GRAND TOTAL: $ 26.98

Some customers accidentally select the wrong product and/or specify the wrong quantity. If this happened to you, please reply to this email and include any changes to your order.

What do you get when you cross a snowman with a vampire? FROSTBITE.

Normally we ship the next business day after your order.

SHIPPING METHOD: USPS First Class (Post Office)
DELIVERY TIME (on average): 3-7 business days (US), 7-20 business days (International)

We will send you another email confirming the shipment of your package, and this email will include a delivery confirmation number, which will allow you to determine if a delivery has been attempted.

Thank you for your support.

Customer Support
Grantwood Technology LLC
phone: 440-239-1885

------------- End message -------------

I’m reading this and I’m thinking, wow, what a great “Hey are you SURE you got everything right?” email. Because you know, of you didn’t, other people messed up too, so don’t feel like a total dumbass.

Then I see the joke. See it? Right after Notes About Your Order.

Now I have had this awful cold for four days and feel like garbage, Kinley has started seizing again, Gabriel also has the cold and I’m pretty crankified. But this cracks me up.

So I send this back.

Q: What is the best way to talk to Count Dracula?

A: Long distance.

Yep, everything looks good.

and I get this back

Why was Santa's Little Helper so depressed? LOW ELF ESTEEM.

Sean Mills, Co-Owner

Grantwood Technology LLC
Engle Rd Ste P

Middleburg Heights OH 44130
Phone: 440-239-1885
Fax: 440-378-5931

This sent me and the boy into gales of cackling. For the next hour we just walked around the house going “Low Elf Esteem! ahahhahaaaa....”

See this is just the kind of customer interaction I was talking about when I started bluedotshops.com the whole “Hey there’s a person involved.’” aspect rather then the vacuous Tweeting where everyone is shouting over everyone else and no one is paying attention.

SO, yeah, if I ever need anything like this again, Sean is my man. Not, you know, just because he had one of the best worst jokes EVER but because he engaged on a human, goofy kind of level.

They also have this Ipad Holder which is totally going on my list as it would be great for camping. I have the Element rigged so it would be like a tiny drive in.

Anyhow, my point is, while it’s important to be you know, professional and stuff, it’s just as important to pay attention. Paying attention is really a form of small kindness and hey, we could all use more if that.

Friday, February 11, 2011


Maybe least productive Friday ever. You know like, when you sit in front of your computer and just look for time wasters? Yep. I took a shower, and got dressed. Pretty much my big accomplishment for the day.

Now I'm going to pick up the boy and have ice cream.

That's as far as I've gotten.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Helping Hearts Silver Broken Heart

Silver Broken Heart

This is a beautiful piece donated to the Helping Hearts shop. 100 percent of the sale goes to Lucinda's family and shipping is free.

Helping Hearts

Satchel click here to visit shop

This bag is now listed at the Helping Hearts shop for sale. All proceeds go to Lucinda and her Family and shipping is free. If you have had your eye on it, now is the time to snap it up and do good work in the process.

Das Poop

Helping Hearts

Helping Hearts

This is the shop where sellers have donated goods to raise money for Lucinda and her family. Please visit and check back often as new goods are being added every day, several times a day. My Bird satchel will be going there for sale as well as a few other items I haven't listed yet.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011



11-year-old dies from injuries suffered in house fire

Posted: Feb 03, 2011 6:40 AMUpdated: Feb 07, 2011 10:45 AM
CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - An 11-year-old boy has died from injuries he suffered in a house fire which occurred last week and efforts are underway to assist the family with housing and other expenses.
According to a family friend, Kevin Boardman died at the burn unit at Palmetto Health Children's Hospital in Columbia, SC, late Saturday.
"It's hard, the family is just taking it an hour at a time, one day at a time," Sheryl Jacoppo, a neighbor and family friend of 10 years.  "I think it's going to be like that for a while, they're still in shock."
On Sunday, friends of the Boardman family raked through the charred rubble of their 6200 Springdale Drive home trying to find anything to salvage from the blaze which destroyed most of the home, and killed most of the family's pets.  Well wishers also left teddy bears outside the home in memory of Kevin.
He and three other family members were hurt when a fire ripped through their home around 5:20 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 3.
Roger Moody told police around 5:25 a.m., he heard his neighbor across the street yelling for help.  When Moody looked out his window, he saw Bob Boardman's house on fire and Moody immediately called 911. 
When Charlotte firefighters arrived three minutes later, Boardman, his wife Cindy, and their 17-year-old son Timothy, were outside. 
Robert Boardman told firefighters that Kevin was still inside the burning house.
Kevin ran down the stairs halfway, but went back up to his bedroom to check on his animals.  Firefighters found him in his room surrounded by his animals.  They removed Kevin and brought him outside.
The boy was critically injured and the three other family members suffered serious injuries. 
Robert Boardman's co-workers have set up a fund to assist the family with medical and living expenses.  If you would like to make a donation call 704-568-7804, or toll free at 1-866-761-1292.   
As of Monday morning, funeral arrangements are still incomplete.  
Copyright 2011 WBTV. All rights reserved.

This is Lucinda's family. She's loved and respected by many members of the Etsy community and has had a shop there for a very long time, Designedbylucinda. 

I'm supposed to be writing about what happened and distribute information and what not but I'm just so angry, this is just so wrong. It's surreal. 
When I first read about what happened I cried and cried and then I had to explain to my son, who will be eleven next month what happened and he cried.
He's never heard anything like that or seen his Mom cry. Kids shouldn't die and they shouldn't have to consider death or how awful it must have been and they shouldn't have to comfort their mothers. I shouldn't have to convince my son our house won't burn down. Life is hard enough, this isn't right.
There shouldn't be a family out there, right now, trying to understand or come to terms with what we, as parents, fear the most.

Kids should grow up and move out and make decisions both bad and good, but it's wrong when they die. It's wrong. It's obscene. 
And what do you say? It would kill me? How will you go on? It will get better but it will never go away and you'll learn to live with it? Mothers and Fathers should not have to go through this. How do you go through? Really, that sort of assumes there's another side to come out of. 

This is wrong.
No, you express what you can and walk away feeling like it's nowhere near enough and can't ever be. And then you get pissed and try to be helpful.
So I'm trying to be helpful and Lucinda, I am so very, very sorry. This should never happen. Never. I'm sorry about the pets too, I know that is a huge loss. I can't even begin to express the anguish so many of us feel right now. 
Some of us are good friends, some of us are acquaintances  and some of us just know you from the forum. But most of us are parents and that is a common bond. Hundreds of people you've never met grieve with you. And we'll try and do what we can.
There has been a PayPal account set up for donations for Cindy and her family.

It is:


Cards and small items (I was thinking gift cards as well) can be sent to:
Boardman Family Fund
Knight Communications
10150 Mallard Creek Rd.
Suite 201
Charlotte, NC 28262

The family has asked that clothing or large items not be sent at this time as they are in temporary housing. 
Over the next few days Etsy sellers will be selling goods and donating the proceeds. I will list those items as they come up and include my own. 

UEF FORUM  this will take you to the UEF thread for more information.

Links to Community Efforts & Info -

For ongoing updates, and more information on how to help:

Community Quilt for Lucinda:

Etsy Thread for Condolences:

But right now I am going to snuggle with the boy and appreciate what it means that he is still here. Maybe later I can try and understand why another Mother's son is not. 

Virtual is not Disposable

I am not a Sim. I think that perhaps I need to go into virtual friendships with this disclaimer. Why? Because there is an aspect of Virtual relations that really bothers me and that, as of yet, I have to see happen in real life.

In real life when there is a conflict, a discussion happens. When people I am friends with, or in a group with, shoot, even at the dog park, disagree, we talk. What has happened to me, twice, once with a friend and now a group online, is that either all communication stops or as in the group, a dismissal with no recourse or explanation.

Then, people tell me it shouldn't bother me. Well, it does. Because I don't see the difference between investing IRL and investing virtually and I don't think virtual friends are worth less then those you actually have to look at to interact with. I don't think online relationships demand less respect.

Unless of course, I'm missing something and in real life some people just cut and run and then hide.  IRL you have to have a discussion that the other person can participate in in real time. Virtually, you can send an email and then you just never have to respond.

Now obviously in both cases, I upset someone. In both cases I was and remain clueless as to what that upset was. It was easier to get rid of me then to allow redress. And that bothers me. I  haven't figured out if it's simply the lack of fair play, or maybe I don't like feeling like I upset someone, maybe it's because I really didn't want to join but did anyway. Maybe I really dislike chickenshit tactics or all of the above and more.

In both these cases I had invested time and energy and was encouraged to talk freely. In both cases they parties involved sort of knew me, so ME wasn't something they weren't familiar with. In the case of the friend, turns out 'm not the first, so that sort of tells me it's not personal. Not that I'll ever know.

With the group, it bothers me because there was no warning or opportunity to correct whatever mistake I had made. It was just an Off With Her Head! governance. I was "Incompatible". IRL this would not have happened, or if it had it would have been considered dysfunctional and unfair unless the offense was egregious.

There would be discussion about whatever I was doing/saying and how it did or didn't work and so on. Well, in my lifetime that's how it has gone anyway. My experience has been that usually groups you are invested in just don't dump you. Because you aren't something that is disposable, you have merit, you are a person. With you know, feelings. You are worthy of the uncomfortable conversation.

But because this is virtual I'm "Not supposed to let it bother me." Why, exactly? My feelings aren't virtual. Nor is my investment, or my confusion or the humiliation I feel. That is all very real. I'm not crying in my cups, but yes, I'm upset. When did it become normal or ideal not to be? I won't die from being upset and I'd like to think neither will you, having read of my upset. Isn't being upset normal?

I don't like being discarded and then being assured it doesn't 'really' matter because it's just online. Never mind me, never mind the people who were counting on me to do something and have no idea why I went *poof*.

Now a team is certainly entitled to cull it's membership as it see's fit, how it see's fit. But this post isn't really so much about that. It's about how I'm not supposed to be bothered by it and the very real lack of care that seems to be becoming more and more acceptable. Because it's "just an online thing." I'm supposed to just suck it up because it's online and so the common courtesies aren't afforded and that is what, ok?

I'm hearing that my experience isn't unique and that disturbs me if that is the way we are headed. Consideration for 'real' relationships because it can't really be avoided and none for virtual because it easily can. My virtual friends matter as much to me as my real ones and frankly, I don't consider that to be overly emotional or dorky or whatever.

The people I interact with in a common arena, whether it's a team or a group of what have you, I pretty much think they are entitled to that same courtesies my workplace folk would be. People are people, regardless of where they are or how one is communicating.

People make mistakes, they misspeak, they are misunderstood and everyone has a bad day. I've said my share of things I felt stupid about later. I've been misunderstood and have aways appreciated the chance to explain or apologize. Because when people allow you to do that, it means that even though you made them uncomfortable, pissed, whatever, you rate enough to be heard, if not agreed with.

Unless they kicked your dog, everyone deserves a conversation, if not a chance to make amends.

It bothers me. IRL it's like getting a call saying "We don't want you anymore." and then they hang up and don't return your WTF? call. Because they can and then there you are floundering and gobsmacked. Isn't online tidy?

When it stops bothering me I'll know it's time to stay offline for good. Because virtual or not, I am not a throwaway and I refuse to treat anyone else as if they are. Virtual or not, you deserve the same consideration as someone I have to deal with because they are standing right there, flesh and blood.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Ballston Art and Craft Show

Call for Local Artists
The Ballston Arts & Crafts Market is searching for artists for the 2011 markets. By Abby Albright January 31, 2011

I sat down to talk with Jessica Blaszczak, the wonderful Markets Coordinator at the Ballston Partnership. Blaszczak is responsible for running the Ballston Arts & Crafts Market (http://patch.com/A-JhK), the only 100% handmade market in Arlington. She also put on this year's first-ever Holiday Artist Boutique (http://patch.com/A-cvgY)

Blaszczak is currently reviewing applications for the 2011 Markets, the deadline is THIS Wed., Feb. 2, but she will review applications after that based on space. The modest Blaszczak is also the artist of This Little Piggy
(http://www.thislittlepiggymarket.net/home.html), her adorable custom piggy banks! 

Hurry and get your applications (http://ballstonarts- craftsmarket.blogspot.com/) in now.

Patch: What is the call for artists about?

Blaszczak: Planning for the 2011 Ballston Arts & Crafts Market is in full swing! We're now looking for both new and returning artists to apply to the upcoming season. We're starting one month early in April, so the submission deadline for applications is earlier this year--Wed., Feb. 2. (Submissions received after Feb. 2 will be reviewed on a rolling basis and are subject to availability.)

Patch: Who is eligible to enter?

 Blaszczak: Local artists (NOVA, DC, Baltimore, etc.) are all welcome to apply! We are Arlington's only 100% handmade art market, so no mass-
produced, commercially produced items are eligible.

Patch: How many artists will be selected? Blaszczak: This is a tough question! There are 35 exhibitor spaces per show, but since some artists participate in multiple shows and some only participate in one or two, it's hard to say. My guess would be about 100+ artists per season.

Patch: Where and when will the market be held?

Blaszczak: The Ballston Arts & Crafts Market is held in pretty, tree-lined Welburn Square (http://ballston.patch.com/listings/welburn- square) between North Stuart and North 9th Streets, right across from on the Ballston Metro. 

We set up from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. the second Saturdays of every month from April to October. For exact market dates, please visit our blog at http://ballstonarts-craftsmarket.blogspot.com/ (http://ballstonarts- craftsmarket.blogspot.com/).

Patch: Will we see some of our favorite artists from last year?

Blaszczak: Absolutely! You'll see a bunch of returning artisans from last season, like Herban Lifestyle (http://herbanlifestyle.com/), Melissa Lew (http://www.melissalew.com/), Bette's Bags (http://www.bettesbags.com/), Steven L. Miller Words and Images (http://www.SLMphoto.com/), The BumbleBee Studio (http://TheBumbleBeeStudio.com/), and BoxBoy Demented Decoupage (http://www.boxboyboxes.com/)--just to name a few.

Patch: What should Arlingtonian's be excited for about this year's market?

Blaszczak: The talent this year is off the charts! Every year, word seems to be spreading about our community market, so the participating artists keep getting better and better. I'm also really excited about the bands performing this year. Really great stuff.

Patch: What else would you like to know Ballston to know?

Blaszczak: We have a lot in store for our exhibitors and visitors this year--artist raffles, craft demos, awesome music, free giveaways and many more surprises, so please keep checking the blog for updates and come out and support Arlington's best and only 100% handmade market!