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[personal profile] onib
First off, taxes are finally on their way. I prefer to be done by now, but stuff came up (besides life stuff, I couldn't find last year's return and needed some data from it to finish this year's return...and of course Maryland requires data from your federal return rather than your W-2s like a reasonable state). Anyhow, we're not getting close to the windfall of last year, but at least it's in the positive direction, so that'll be nice. I'd like to thank the IRS for going out of its way to constantly remind me to claim my Federal Telephone Excise Tax credit. It may only be an extra $40, but now it's my extra $40.

I would now like to use this space to make two complaints, or air some pet peeves if you will. First of all, why is it that every time I go to Wal-Mart, I look at the long lines in the normal check-out aisles and pass them up to go to the short self check-out aisles. Now, I like self check-out aisles (although I have to give Amy a hard time for wanting to use them every time we go grocery shopping). However, it seems that I have the worst luck with them, but only at Wal-Marts. I always end up behind someone who has apparently never used one before and must slowly read every word on the screen before scanning each and every item. Then, they can't figure out how to use any of the payment options or have forgotten money altogether. You probably know I'm an extremely patient fellow. I don't get upset easily at people who are unfamiliar with technology, but how does this happen every time I go to the store?!? Yes, that's a petty peeve, but when your next in line and you still have to wait 15 minutes, it's gets a little frustrating.

My other peeve of the moment is with TV show DVDs. We signed up with Netflix a while back, and have really been enjoying watching TV shows that never played on channels we watched, or we didn't know to look out for originally. It's great if for no other reason that you can easily cancel the rest of the series if you find you don't like it. Sometimes, you find some real gems. For instance, I totally love Dead Like Me. It's from the mind of the same guy that brought us Wonderfalls and the similarities are numerous. I'd highly recommend it to any of you. Mighty fine show! So, anyway, on to the pet peeve. It is one more television DVD series that puts all of the deleted scenes from the entire season on the first disk. What is up with that? The new Doctor Who season is doing the same thing. That's well and good for people who own the box set, but why would you number the DVDs, and then make viewers have to watch them out of order so that they don't spoil anything for themselves?

Yeah, ok, those are fairly colossally petty annoyances, but sometimes it's only the little things that truly drive you up the wall.

Date: 2007-03-14 09:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bethje.livejournal.com
I showed my cousin Wonderfalls, and she told me that I needed to watch Dead Like Me. One day I will. One day.

But I am a major netflix enthusiast.

Date: 2007-03-15 03:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] onib.livejournal.com
You should definitely add it to your queue. After seeing the first episode, I thought of you in particular as someone who would really enjoy it. The narrative voice of the show is extremely close to that of Wonderfalls without just being a straight-out copy.

Date: 2007-03-14 10:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] moominmuppet.livejournal.com
I'm totally with you on the deleted scenes issue, and I'll add in a peeve for disks that fail to include a "Play all" option for episodes and for screens full of special features (one disk I found made you individually select and play every deleted scene, even though few of them were longer than 30 seconds -- irritating!)

MASH Season 1 is lacking a "Play All" for the eps, and it's driving me nuts when I'm trying to watch in the background while accomplishing other stuff.

And I'm totally with you on Dead Like Me -- great show, gone too soon.

Date: 2007-03-15 04:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] onib.livejournal.com
I haven't run into any that bad, but I know exactly what you mean. Even if you are devoting your full attention to the scenes, you don't want to have to keep manually flipping through them every couple of seconds. I think the tech people that put together the layouts to DVDs should be forced to go through them for several hours before deciding that not including a simple "play all" is acceptable.

Date: 2007-03-14 10:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gwalkmaur.livejournal.com
In regard to the first one - You think that's bad, everytime Amy and I go shopping and use one of them, it yells at us. Okay, at me mostly. Not that I'm doing it wrong and that I'm unfamiliar with technology, but..."BEEP BEEP BEEP PLEASE CHECK THAT YOU HAVEN'T PUT THE WRONG THING IN THE BAG"...when I'm nowhere near the bag...

Date: 2007-03-15 04:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] onib.livejournal.com
It knows you work in a different grocery store. Technology can get very jealous. If it smells another scanner on you, it gives you a hard time.

Date: 2007-03-15 04:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] beautyofgrey.livejournal.com
I'm the person in front of you in line. Not that I don't know how to use the damn thing, it's just every time that I do, something goes wacky. It runs out of paper for the receipt. I key in the PIN wrong, but instead of being given the option to re-key it, the service person must come push her magic buttons. It beeps at me mercilessly because the item in the bag was not heavy enough. Etc etc etc.

Date: 2007-03-15 03:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] onib.livejournal.com
You know, I think I'd still be pretty understanding of your situation in these cases. Technology messes with us like that a lot. When traveling to visit a friend's wedding, we stopped by the grocery store to pick up a bouquet of flowers. We needed 3 workers to get the system to allow us to buy that one item. It wasn't heavy enough to register by itself, and if you tried to push the scale, it would be too much.

The people in front of me tend to have more problems with themselves than with the scanner. :P

Date: 2007-03-15 07:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mythfish.livejournal.com
Both Wonderfalls and Dead Like Me are great. I watched Dead Like Me without realizing any of the Wonderfalls people had anything to do with it, and I kept thinking, "Man, George sure reminds me of Jaye." And then I figured out why.

Date: 2007-03-15 08:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] onib.livejournal.com
Yeah, I heard some good things about Dead Like Me, then I found out about the Wonderfalls link, and that was more than recommendation enough.

Date: 2007-03-15 08:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] haggis.livejournal.com
I really like the self-serve tills, except in Asda where they are for some reason much more bossy than other places and where the person in front of me always seem to have bought alcohol (which needs to be checked by one of the staff to prove you're not underage). Or people who wander off half way through to get more stuff!

Date: 2007-03-15 08:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] onib.livejournal.com
In Maryland, Delaware, and Pennsylvania (the three closest states), alcohol cannot be sold anywhere but approved liquor stores. So, we don't have to worry too much about that. Of course, grocery/department stores do tend to sell cigarettes which have to be age verified.

I had a wander-off the other day. I'm just staring at this person while they walk away from their checked purchases to look through the shelves a little more. I always say that people never surprise me anymore, but somehow, they find a way.

Date: 2007-03-17 02:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] vovat.livejournal.com
The recent Simpsons DVD's have the option of playing the deleted scenes within the episodes from which they were deleted (by means of pressing a button when an icon shows up on the screen), as well as a set of all of the scenes with commentary. I think the set is usually on the last disc, which makes a lot more sense than putting them on the first disc.

Of course, I think the real issue is that TV DVD sets aren't usually made with Netflix in mind. They probably figure that, if you haven't seen all the episodes, you can just put the first disc back in after you have, since you buy all of them in a set anyway. And that's obviously not possible if you've already returned the first disc.

Date: 2007-03-19 01:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] onib.livejournal.com
The Simpsons DVD sounds like it's set up pretty well. It'd be cool if more shows fixed up their disks like that.

I did consider that if you really wanted to see the scenes without spoiling the show, you could re-add just the first disk after the series ends, but that's just annoying.
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