Monday, June 25, 2012

How to Assemble a Wheelbarrow

I decided to put my new wheelbarrow together, so I carried the big pieces and the box that contained many parts to the living room, and looked for instructions. The only instructions were four drawings on the box flaps, but they were numbered, so how hard could it be?

First you need to know that there are really seven steps, but that’s okay, because with my instructions you won’t need pictures of the three additional steps.

Step 1:  Using shortest bolts, attach wood handles to metal thing. Do not tighten nuts until all parts are together. Done. This is gonna be a breeze. Disregard fact that bolts were inserted backwards.

Step 2:  Fit steel bar into slots on two other pieces of steel. Study picture and wrestle steel for 20 minutes until deciding to proceed to Step Three and come back to this.

Step 3:  Stack and study 84 additional parts that must be properly balanced, aligned and held in place while fitting five inch bolts through bucket and all these pieces. Realize it is not possible for one person to do this, even if the bolt holes had been drilled in the right places. This step also requires the parts from Step Two that have not yet been assembled.

Step 4:  Go to kitchen to see if there is any wine. Sip wine while pondering Step Two.

Step 5:  Review Step Three. Scream profanities while tossing parts around the room. Play with wheel, wondering what else you can use it for since it will never be attached to wheelbarrow. Apologize to wheelbarrow for calling it a piece of shit and pack up parts.

Step 6: Go to kitchen to see if there is any more wine. Chug wine and carry all parts back to garage.

Step 7: Call son-in-law, who assembles wheelbarrow in ten minutes, with eyes closed.

***You may want to print these instructions, as they also work for bikes, patio furniture, and installation of flat screen televisions.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Don't Scan Me When I'm Gone

I just read about a business that offers a “fresh interactive service to family and loved ones to keep memories alive.”

They make a stainless steel plaque with a QR scan code to attach to your headstone. Then anyone with a cell phone(a smart one) can scan the code, which will send them to a website with photos and stories about you. They can also POST COMMENTS INSTANTLY!

Turns out that the “quality interactive web page” is a Facebook page.

I have a few questions.

What does QR stand for, exactly? Queerly Revealing? Quack Radar? Can anyone buy this and attach it to the dearly departed’s headstone?

“Coach Smith. He wasn’t very nice. And he smelled funny.”

“Here’s Aunt Matilda, who invented prostitution.”

Oh, the trouble it could cause. 

What if you accidentally stuck Uncle Harry's scan code on Aunt Helen's headstone? It could create horrible misunderstandings on Facebook. Imagine that.

Maybe you could just put the obituary on it, which would be cool for future generations to see. But how long until scan codes go the way of the 8 track tape and VHS? Or film? Remember needing film in order to snap a photo?

I imagine visitors placing flowers on a grave, and saying “What the heck is that?” and some guy trimming weeds in the cemetery replies “That’s how people used to find information on their deceased loved ones…and family...and complete strangers.”

It just seems wrong to me to be browsing (and “posting comments instantly”) on Facebook while visiting the cemetery.

If you like this idea, why not just make your Facebook page public before you croak?  Easy peasy - those at your grave who just can't help themselves can search and find it. For free. No QR scan code required. They can check in to see who checked out.

I want my Facebook page to go before I do. I do not want it resurrected for profit or keeping memories or anything else. Period. 

What do you think? If Facebook is here to stay, how long do you plan to have a page?