One of the things I've been excited about with the new house is being able to entertain friends and family in a non-cramped space. We're so lucky in Arizona that we can be outside for a big portion of the year, so I wanted a patio set that would seat 6 for dining outdoors from October to May (see, Arizona is awesome!). So I naively began my search for a patio set, and quickly realized that a 7-piece set can easily cost the same as a Geo Metro. Good lawd! People want some serious money for a table and chairs. So I turned my attention to Craigslist, where I hoped to find a gently used set to last us a couple years, possibly to be replaced with more of an "investment" piece later.
Craigslist kinda drives me nuts. There's all sorts of junk on there burying the gems and good deals. And the pictures people post? Really, folks, if you're going to try to sell a sofa, take the laundry off of it. I found an ad for one patio set that said in the description "does not come with cushions." And the picture showed why: they'd apparently been ripped off by a rapid boar and there were only remnants left. Not to mention, the table itself had what looked to be rotten leaves on it. Take some pride in what you're selling, and take the 5 minutes to hit it with some Windex. Proper staging is key.
So anyway, I responded to a couple of ads over the last couple days, and didn't hear back. Bummer, because they looked to be nice sets. I sent another email last night when I got home for a third ad. I asked for a description of the set as there were no photos. About an hour later, I got a reply from the owner describing the set. I couldn't tell you what it looked like, though, because I couldn't get past the email address.... &#^%$babes69 at aol.com (where &#^%$ are other letters to conceal the whole addy).
Where to begin? First, "babes69?" Really? That's how you want to present yourself to people? Call me crazy, but I'd feel like a douche when people asked for my email address and I responded "it's, uh, &#^%$ b-a-b-e-s-sixty-nine..." How old is this person? And how have they not been told to sign up for an appropriate email address? That was one of the first things we learned in college - get yourself an email address that lacks mention of any body parts, sexual acts, recreational substances, or implications of promiscuity. Just your name, maybe with a dot or an underscore at blahblah.com. That's it. First impressions, in business, and in life, are everything, and "babes69" isn't a good one. I can't help but imagine some sleezy guy sitting in front of his computer eating Fritos chili pies in his sweatpants. When he's not eating, he's probably taking duck face self-portraits in his bathroom mirror and posting them on the singles section of Craigslist. Who knows what that poor furniture has seen or been through. Ew.
Secondly, AOL? I know it's still around because I know other people with AOL addresses, but it still amazes me to see one. I wonder if I could pay "babes69" in 1,500 free hour CDs. I'm sure I have some in an old box somewhere. Those CDs are as good as money, you know. Remember how we all got those CDs and we'd go sign up for AOL and search by keywords and go in chat rooms and enjoy the sound of "you've got mail" for 1,500 hours, and then when the account ran out, you'd have to wait for a new CD, get a new handle, and start all over? How many CDs has "babes69" gone through in 15 years? Maybe "babes69" used to be "babes1" so the answer to my question is actually 69 CDs.
Clearly, I don't think this is the set for me. Lord knows what "babes69" has been doing with it or where it's been. Thanks, but no thanks. I went to a large box store which will remain unnamed and ordered a new, untainted set for the same amount of money. "Babes69" will have to find someone else to buy his unfortunate patio set.
Also, I did a little guest blurb over at Amanda's blog that you should check out. Sheen Watch 2011: It's full of win.