Things that suck; Things that rock

Things that suck

  • Quickflix, because the last three DVDs they’ve sent us were faulty. (Actually, the two copies of Dr Strangelove might have been the same disk.) Double suck for the Fargo DVD being faulty in the last fifth.
  • The thread starting here. Just looking at it in all its threadly glory will give you an idea.
  • Stimulants. I can run on caffeine and pseudoephedrine when ill, but they both make me feel kind of hyper-well, so I drive myself into the wall and only find out when the effects wear off.
  • Andrew’s machine’s BIOS which not only won’t work with USB keyboards (recall, he has no working PS/2 ports) but which also periodically fails to give him a usable mouse.
  • Laptop prices in Australia. Let’s review one culprit, the IBM T series direct from Lenovo. In the US, it starts at $1 399. In Canada, it starts at $1 499 (US$1270 or so). In Australia, it’s $2 599 (US $1920 or so). Yeah. I can’t work this one out. I’m not exactly taking advantage of economies of scale when I point out that it would cost me about $100 to ship one from the US.
  • Stores that don’t put the price on things above a certain price. I mean, if I have to ask, which I’m disinclined to because then I’ll get a sales pitch and I tend to do my consumer research before hitting a store, it’s not like the mere fact of having to ask will make me more likely to pay a huge amount for something. SCUBA stores are a bit weird about this. They’ll happily show off a new $3999 set as their top-end kit for the season or three (I’m talking rec diving here), but they’ll never ever put a price on a wrist computer, which tend to be about $500-$600 in Australia. (See above re laptops for the weird price differences from North America.) Camera stores are more consistent. C’mon, it’s not like I don’t know the current price range for low-end DSLRs, I just want to know if you’re selling at RRP or not.

Things that rock

  • I just experienced my first ever hard-drive failure. Fortunately, not only was everything important to me backed up, I also found the sole remaining copy of my GPG secret key after hunting through several household computers.
  • LeisurePro, who have just shipped me my new baby, despite being a bit dubious about a non-US card, and my initially giving them the wrong expiry date. First person to rip them off with an unjustified chargeback on a foreign card, you will feel the back of my hand.