Amoeblog

THE $84,000 PHONE BILL

Posted by Billyjam, December 19, 2007 05:45am | Post a Comment
No matter how bad your phone bill ever gets, odds are it will never come close to that of the Canadian oil field worker who recently was stunned upon receiving an almost $84,000 cell phone bill. Turns out that the Canadian, a 22 year old named Piotr Staniaszek, who is an oil and gas well tester in rural northwest Alberta, mistakenly thought that he could use his new phone as a modem for his computer as part of his unlimited monthly browser plan for 10 Canadian dollars from Bell Mobility, a division of Bell Canada. Or at least, that's what his dad (his designated press rep) is telling the media.

But that was far from the case, hence the hefty phone bill. Apparently he was online a lot, all the while thinking that he was on his $10 a month unlimited plan, as he downloaded movies and other high-resolution files oblivious to the later per-minute charges they would incur. "He's working in the field sometimes, alone, in the shack. What to do? Drink vodka or go on the Internet?" Staniaszek senior said, in defense of his son. "Now it's C$85,000 and nobody told him," he said.

According to the invoice, his son rang up about $59,000 in charges in November, and they have since  climbed to around $84,000. But then, after he protested and it got a lot of media attention, first in Canada and then beyond, the Bell company reduced it considerably out of "goodwill" -- making it now the much lower and affordable amount of $3,365. But even that is too high says the 22 year old, who still feels like $10 a month is what he should be charged, so long as he doesn't do it again.

A Bell spokesman said the plan is not intended for downloading files to a computer, and that's clear in his contract. Meanwhile, Poppa Staniaszek said his son did not want to talk to the press after the interest his story has received and that he is afraid to use his cell phone and incur more long-distance charges.

The Art Of Dying

Posted by phil blankenship, December 18, 2007 11:27pm | Post a Comment
 






PM Home Video

The Employee Interview XIII: Kaitlin

Posted by Miss Ess, December 18, 2007 03:56pm | Post a Comment

Kaitlin
4 years employment
Photographer Extraordinaire

ME:  What was the first thing (band/song/moment) that got you into music-- like,shirley temple good ship lollipop really into music? 

KL: The Beatles and The Beach Boys are my earliest music memories.  Actually, I still have a Shirley Temple record that was the one record I would beg my dad to play for me.  “The Good Ship Lollipop” was my song!

ME:  Seeing as you are one of the biggest Beatles fans currently working here, I think this is a really important question for you:  Who is your favorite Beatle and why?

george harrison dark horseKL:  George.  I wept the day he died.  I think I always identified with him.  John was wonderful, but in a more outspoken way, whereas George was always thoughtful and understated.  He lived his live quietly and peacefully.  I once cut a quote out of a magazine where George tells what he said to the intruder who stabbed him at home: “I just shouted 'Hare krishna, hare krishna!'”  Oh, George.

ME: Yeah he really was the Dark Horse.  Which Beatles track is your favorite?

KL:  Well, there is a different answer every day, but “For You Blue” on Let It Be is one of my favorite George tracks.  “Cry Baby Cry” on the White Album.  “I’m Only Sleeping” on Revolver-- I dig the backwards guitar.

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AIR FRESHENER IS NOT FRESH AIR, NOT NEARLY

Posted by Billyjam, December 18, 2007 03:54pm | Post a Comment

Yesterday I had one of those moments of uncanny coincidence -- one that makes you go 'wow' because the exact person or thing that you happen to be thinking about appears right there in front of you. Only in my case it was the thing that I was just reading about that hit my nose.

I was sitting on the bus, lost in this great article in the latest (Dec 07) issue of Arthur magazine (the one with the Amoeba Records ad on p27) about the dangers of household chemicals when this strong chemical odor hit my nose. The source of this overpowering toxic stank was the fresh nail varnish that the young mother directly behind me was applying with precision to her long fingernails. Meanwhile, the article in Arthur titled "Kick Out The Chemicals" that I had just started reading tackles this exact same topic: the toxicity dangers of everyday household products such as nail polish, hair dye, air freshener, window-glass cleaner, etc.

Equally important, this wonderful article, written by regular magazine columnist Molly Frances, also offers many safe non-toxic alternatives to these dangerous products that so many of us use daily or are exposed to daily. This list's cheaper and a million times safer alternative cleaning tools include white vinegar, baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, borax, tea tree oil, cheap vodka, lavender oil (for scent), cut up rags (to avoid wasting paper towels), and an empty spray bottle.

That's all you need to clean the bathroom or kitchen floor. More than you need, in fact. Frances suggests for natural, non-toxic floor mopping to get a bucket of hot water and simply add vinegar and a drop of Bronner's (vegetable-based) soap."

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MAGIC

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, December 18, 2007 01:56pm | Post a Comment
There have been very, very few times in my life that I have heard a new song on the radio--  commercial radio-- that makes me stop, pull over, and turn it up. And yes, I am forced to listen to commercial radio in my car because I dont have anything but a cassette player and an AM/FM band. I'm that ghetto. But anyway, the other evening I was driving home, and I happened upon the middle of song that blew my mind. I couldn't quite place the vocals, they were male, and the arrangement was decidedly un-KFOG, the channel it was on.

Now, I'm no musical encyclopedia, but I am good at guessing who's who on the radio, especially when its the same 12 songs that they play over, and over, and over. But this time, hmmm... No. I couldn't quite place it. The refrain was magical: "The girls in their summer clothes, in the cool of the evening sky; the girls in their summer clothes, pass me by." I'll get to the melody soon, but those lyrics really got me. I love songs that can be read two ways. For example, if you listen to Cat Stevens' "Wild World" closely, he's actually not sending off his love with, er, love. No, he is being extremely passive aggressive. "The girls in their summer clothes" could also be read two ways.


  First, he is enjoying watching pretty girls walk by. And second, he is enjoying watching pretty girls walk by who are completely ignoring him because he's a loser. I love it. I listened a bit closer. Could it be? Nah... but maybe. It sort of sounded like an overproduced... Bruce Springsteen? His single from his latest album underwhelmed me, to say the least, so it couldn't be him.

Plus he never has songs that sound like that; a Phil Spector take on Big Star, in my best estimation. No, this had to be some cool indie band that was getting all Americana. I kept listening. The song told a story about a guy who gets up, puts on his jacket and heads out the door. OK, totally Springsteen.

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