Hot Camera Action

So I bought a Canon 10D. It’s completely incredible. I am amazed at how awesome this camera is. But that’s beside the point. I knew it was going to be awesome.

The point is I bought it from State Street Direct who gave me a very good price and very cheap overnight shipping. About $80 better than anywhere else on the price and about $100 better for the shipping. Here’s the catch: They would not give me a tracking number, no matter what I said. They said it was for security reasons. They also would not ship to my work address unless I could have it added to my credit card which my bank would not do.

So, like most people I work all day and cannot stay home and wait for the UPS guy who needs a signature. I paid for overnight shipping but the way it was going to go was:
Day 1: Order the thing.
Day 2: Guy shows up, no one home, leave note. I sign note saying please leave camera at UPS and I’ll pick it up.
Day 3: Guy sees note, leaves camera at UPS.
Day 4: I can pick it up.

Instead I left a note on the door with a signature asking the guy to please take the package right back to UPS so I could get it after work, which he did. Unfortunatly he didn’t leave me a note with a package id or tracking number so UPS wanted nothing to do with me.

So I ran down to the UPS place after work and begged and pleaded and they hooked me up.

That’s not the point.

This is the point.

The point is that for whatever absurd security reasons State Street has for not giving me my tracking number I had to go through a pile of hassle and be worried for two days that I got completely screwed out of $1500, which for me is a hell of a lot of money. These people required me to fax a copy of my credit card and drivers license to them, respond to a email and talk to them on the phone so they could verify the order but their “Security Policy” would not allow them to give me a tracking number so I will not buy from them again. The $Whatever I saved is not worth the bother of chasing down the UPS guy and worrying that I got fucked.

Here is the other point.

I noticed while shopping around that a lot of places will not ship to an address that is not on your credit card. Well, I learned that most debit card companies, i.e. banks will not add additional addresses to their card. I don’t know about you, but I buy everything with my debit card. I don’t have credit cards because:
1) I would go completely insane and be in millions of dollars of debt and…
2) No one will give me one.

So, if because of fraud, e-commerce is going the way of so damn much security that I can’t use it, then what the hell good is it? It would have been easier, less stressful and only slightly more expensive for me to drive to Topeka and buy the camera from a human than what I did instead. E-commerce is about convenience and if it’s not convenient it’s worhtless.

This worries me greatly for a few reasons. One is that I really like e-commerce. I’ve used it quite a bit. I buy books, music, mints, t-shirts, gifts, software and all kinds of shit on the net and I don’t want that to go away. But also, I make a lot of money working in the field. I don’t want that to go away either.

Do I have any ideas or solutions? Of course not. I’ve been drinking all night. How much can you expect from me? This camera kicks ass though. I recommend you buy one; but maybe not from State Street.

Also, since I didn’t mention it before, you should buy an iPod too. I got the 15GB one and it’s very cool. I am also writing some software for transferring music to it because the stuff that comes with it for Windows is just terrible. My software is called vPod (my creativity is just overflowing) and I am going to release it this weekend. Excited? I sure am.

More Prids

Went to see The Prids again last night at the Hurricane. The more I see em the more I like em. Their on-stage energy is awesome. You can tell they really want to play for you.
After their set everyone was all riled up and cheering, begging for more. The bassist chick asked if it was okay and it was so they did. You could tell she was visibly worn out from the set. I think their sets are so short because they just run out of juice to keep going.

The Prids

Went to see The Prids in Lawrence last night. Excellent show, but far too short. Seemed like they only played for about 20 minutes. In any case, they kicked ass. Reminded me very much of New Order. The female bass player was very good and really carried the music. First time I have seen a bassist wearing a wrist band cause she needed it. Very quick hands 🙂

I managed to get pulled over the second I pulled away from the bar. I was parked in a angled parking space and if I had pulled out straight I would have been facing the wrong direction so I pulled out and did kind of a u-turn. Did it right in front of a cop and he didn’t appreciate it. No ticket, which was nice of him. He did point out that the cheapest ticket in Lawrence is $93. Woops.

So anyway, if you like good music go check out The Prids when they come to town.

Water Landing

“In the case of a water landing between Kansas City and Las Vegas you can use your seat cushion as a floatation device. Clasp the cushion to your chest, put your arms through the straps and jump out into the dirt.”

This was the start of my Southwest flight to Vegas this morning and the flight attendants were funny the whole way. The captain also gave us updates every 15 minutes or so on speed, altitude, landmarks and so on. Little things, but it really made a difference in my mind about the flight. It was almost… bearable.

A Moment’s Respite

I just got back from NJ after a long weekend with Kelly. We had a great time; or at least I had a good time, and I am pretty sure she did too.

I got to spend 2.5 hours sitting on the runway in Philly for my flight back. A storm was brewing in Pennsylvania so we sat there to see what it was going to do. The best part was when the captain told us they were going to release one plane for takeoff and that plane was going to report back if they made it through nice and smooth. I’m glad I wasn’t on that plane.

Both flights out and the entire flight back shook like a heroin addict going cold turkey. I think it would be really interesting to see a graph that had like two lines. One showing average turbulance for flights without me on them, and one showing average turbulence for flights with me on them. I think I am being punished, and I am not sure for what.

I managed to be kinda sorta good about my diet in New Jersey. I only had two slices of pizza, one cheesesteak and half an order of cheese fries. That’s about 1/4 of what I would normally eat in the first day of a visit, so not bad. I lost 2 pounds over the weekend which is good. I would have been perfectly happy just not to gain any 🙂

Tomorrow I get to wake up super early, fly to Vegas and work on setting up our trade show all day and then fly back, landing after midnight. 5 flights in 6 days might just break me. I am terrified of flying and I’m usually nervous and jittery a day or two before and after every flight. This time I won’t even be finished being nervous from the flights east before I have to go west. If only there was some button I could press that would knock me out for a prescibed amount of time. Someone needs to drug my milk.