Almost done with shopping. One last trip to get things no one needs; completely unnecessary. But I like those last minute trips. Last night I went to get a gift card at a certain store; asked for a certain amount.
“Done and done,” the clerk said.
“Well - no. You’re just starting to do it. Doing and doing, you mean.”
She looks up. “Do you want this card?”
I knew she would play, because she had that attitude. I explained that I figured she had to say the same thing over and over all day and really, really appreciated it when customers were witty! You know, played with the script. Really adds to the experience, doesn’t it?
“More than you can imagine,” she said. Then I went to the Container Store to get a laundry basket. The old one, made of wicker, is falling apart, and leaves little pieces of wicker all over the floor.
“Can I help you find a wonderful Christmas gift?” chirped a short and merry clerk.
“Not at all,” I said. “It’s not a gift. At least it had better not be. It’s a laundry basket.”
“A symbol of drudgery.”
“Well, the best gift I ever got for Christmas was a dishwasher!”
“That’s different. That’s labor saving. This is just . . . labor.” She pointed me to the basket department, and I picked out an item identical to what we had, and had fallen apart. But it had lasted ten years. At the register the clerk asked if I was a POP member. I said that I was not.
“Would you like to sign up to be one?”
I could feel the entire line of shoppers behind me stiffen. So of course I said “and inconvenience everyone else waiting? Why of course!” Ha ha. “No, just kidding.”
“Thank you,” said the lady behind me.
“My gift to you all.”
I don’t know why I act like this, but it keeps me interested in rote chores, and rarely goes wrong. Yesterday I also had to go to Target - there’s a stunning development - and pick up some extra Christmas cards, because I hadn’t bought enough. (I never buy enough.) The clerk was very apologetic, because they had run out of the breakaway stock.
That’s - bad?
“It was perforated and you just fold the cards in half and you have two cards. All the website has right now is this.” She pulled the cards out of the sleeve. There were two cards per sheet with an indented line in the middle. “You have to cut them.”
“Oh no. That’s bad.”
“I know and I am so sorry. Do you have one of those - those, cutter things?” She mimed the great sharp arm of those, you know, cutter things.
“Not a lot of call for bulk cutting around the house,” I said. “I suppose I could use a scissors but my wife is not going to be happy if I cut them wrong.”
“I am so sorry.”
“It’s not your fault. But I really don’t want to pay full price.”
“I can give you ten percent off.”
“But this isn’t what I ordered. And they have to go out tomorrow. Can I speak to a manager?”
But then something occurred to me.
“Do you have one of those, you know, cutter things in the back?” Because we all know they have things in the back.
“Yes,” she said.
“Do you suppose you could cut them?”
“I could try.”
Do or do not, there is no try! I wanted to bark, but that’s always struck me as a stupid line. So wise, Yoda! So wise.
She went in the back, and came back with perfectly cut cards. I thanked her so much and said my wife would be happy.
“Well, kept your neck off the chopping block!” she said.
“Oh, it’s a worn a groove,” I said.
Hey, let's bang on link chum again. CBS.com uses Taboola, a service that serves up link chum in sloshing buckets; I’ve noticed that one new player is frank151, which paid someone to design and host this crap. Of course I had to click on it, just to see which fake ads they used.
The headlines on the first page:
Seriously Disturbing Vintage Advertisements
These vintage advertisements are so shockingly offensive you won’t believe they were allowed to print this stuff!
Written by a moron, full of fakes. Utter shite, as they say. Here’s one of the ads they BANNED and is so OFFENSIVE you will be SHOCKED and UNABLE to believe they were ALLOWED to run it!
Jeezum Crow, what fools. Oh, there’s more:
Do they know it's fake? As in, Worth 1000 photoshop-contest-take? Are they really that credulous?
Making a bad parody is one thing - that Winston ad gets everything wrong - but falling for a bad parody is the result of ignorant people who have no knowledge of anything that happened before 2004.
Says the site itself: "Frank151 is an internationally recognized Media Company publishing premium print + digital content since 1999. "
O really. Seems they put out a zine, and indeed the main page is not all chum. But to me it’s a worthless brand. Everyone on Taboola is worthless, from BuzzViral to Cyberbreeze to SheSpackle to whatever. It makes the internet a stupider place.
It’s not the ads I mind, it’s the scattershot wide blast of drivel that doesn't even try to provide something I want. They have a page about opting out, which consists of information about twiddling with your browser.
BTW, take a look at their crack staff.
Holy Crow. Do you see it?
I saw it right away. It's like the Maltese Falcon of bottles. The stuff dreams are made of.
Motto: "Incorporated in 1904." Or so the website seems to say. But that's not where it began!
"In 1884, Rudolph Kremmling established a general store in the town, and as ranchers occupied the surrounding areas, more services were established in Kremmling to meet their needs."
Needs having been met, the town was incorporated.
And so today:
As you might have noticed, this isn't your typical Main Street entry.
Some Buckaroo Revival work on the awning, and sign from a David Lynch movie:
Naught left of the smithy's place but the facade:
A local history says this was Mr. Kremmeling's second business location, long ago. Mr. Hoare was born the year of the Columbian Exposition, and died the year of Reagan's election to the presidency.
A thrift shop, with the town's signature awning:
That lamentable glue-on stone: it left no corner of the country untouched.
Masons! Masons everywhere!
An oddly Dutch building, except it's not entirely Dutch.
The URL from the Masonic directory 404s.
The high sign: a big investment. We had one by our station; I still remember the way it creaked in the wind.
When there's nothing up there, the sign just says keep going.
You know, of course, what this is. Or was:
Beautiful little streamlined 30s place. The round window, the curved glass round the corner - wonder what it was.
Need a room?
An image search for old postcards pulls up something interesting on the first hit, and explains why I went to this town in the first place.
Just don't. I mean, it's tempting, but don't. If you do, don't mention my name.
Fortify yourself before you head into the great beyond.
A few motels to close out the penultmate week of the year. This page stops updating at the end of the year, if you recall. If you don't, then you may be angry and confused when it's replaced by Restaurant postcards, but I don't think we'll have that problem.
See you around.