Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Falling Out Of Like

There is this site for those of you who don't know called "Im In Like With You". "IILWY" or "Ill-wee" as us users call it was a place for games. They have knockoff's of Tetris, Pictionary etc. but they also have word/question games. The latter games built a tight community of users. People would ask questions like "The Worst Place For Your Pants Is..." and then other users would spend points to bid their answers.

The answers can be witty, boring, disgusting, whatever a user thinks of. After the game is over the creator chooses a winner, that winner becomes a contact and then those two can interact through chatters and instant messaging. That was how I met a community of people that I call friends, some that I actually know now in the physical world.

I found the site in December 2007 via a blog post by Seth Godin. 6 months later, I'm done with the site. At least for a while. The reason? In the words of the guys on Outkast's Aquemeni skits when they realized "Pimp Trick Gangsta Click" was not all that: "It don't play right". It lost it's functionality. Things are broken. Including my heart. Well the last might not be true but it is very unfortunate.

You know how myspace let's you know how many profile views you have? Well IILWY did the same thing. Until it went into a technical coma from god knows what. Look, I'm not a fucking Doctor or a web programmer so I don't know what happened. The result: Everybody has the same number of profile views. It's not even zero either. It's some random number like 1612 or probably the date of the Magna Carta signing. This hurt the culture of the site because it made the site communist in a way. Everyone was equal, no one was rewarded with seeing or having others see how many profile views they have gathered in their time on the site. It might sound ridiculous but small things make big things.

The site also encountered other problems. Random downtime a la twitter, a somewhat stable IM system, an e-mail system that stopped showing new messages, bids that disappeared and finally we lost our homepages that we used to see when we logged on to the site. There wasn't a whole lot of communication coming from the Wizard behind the Oz as to why the site was as stable as Britney Spears' mind state and it frustrated many users.

One person in this community of users that I was a part of that communicated and hung out away from the site and in real life decided he was done. It was like dominoes. Others including myself decided the cons outweighed the pros and we left too. This is what can happen to a site that experiences technical difficulties. Hell, how many whale pictures will be enough for the users of twitter before they decide the hassle of trying to use the service isn't worth it? I don't want anyone to get me wrong, I do hope that it regains it's functionality at some point, I think it has a lot of potential to hit it big.

All in all I am grateful that I found the site and that it was made in the first place. The community that was created amongst the users introduced me to people I probably would never have met. Not only did we make our own community away from the site, some of us met in real life, danced, hung out, got drunk and slept on each others floors. It just goes to show you what can happen when you build something that attracts a crowd. Relationships are funny that way, they can sprout from the most unlikely of soils.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Hot Garbage Magical Subway Ride

It started maybe around 3:40 pm Saturday. I was on the bus listening to a song that sampled an old joint that you might remember. It goes like "she's a bad mamma jamma" but a rapper also added to this praise of a woman by saying something like "she had an apple bottom and a pony tail". And right at that moment some Spanish chick with an apple bottom and a pony tail sat down in the seat in front of me. Nice.

I finally got to the Greyhound station at around 4 and saw a couple that looked like they could have been inbred. I know, I'm so nice right? The station looked so shitty it reminded me of Port Authority in NYC. The man of the couple is standing over an arcade machine and playing with it's attached steering wheel despite not depositing any coins. Then he grabbed a plastic gun on another arcade game and made gunshot noises. Despite not depositing any coins.

The couple then appeared to wrestle with each other. Perhaps I'm mistaken. It could have possibly been a mating ritual they picked up from their parents...most likely grizzly bears. This Greyhound station needs to be taken behind the shed and put down.

At the risk of sounding like I'm an elitist, a snob or that I am too good for this station and it's paying customers, I am too good for this bus station and it's paying customers. Now there is a lady across from me talking to herself. Oh did I mention, the big guy, Figure 1.0 of why you shouldn't mate with your cousin is reading a Star Wars paperback. I'm so judgmental but who cares. I felt like writing.

It's the day after I got back to Binghamton NY. The change is too dramatic to even use the word dramatic to describe it. Yellow automobiles don't litter the streets. I don't see gay guy's with shiny silver shoes, no berry's are pink, no smell of hot garbage and the only subways around sell sandwiches.

NYC definitely has it's pluses and minuses. It is an overpopulated, dirty place but it has a lot going for it. It taught me some things too: There are a lot of dirty mafuckas in this world, Mimosa's are good if you had vodka on the rocks in abundance the night before and brunch exists. Seriously, brunch is new to me. I sometimes have breakfast in the afternoon but I don't complicate it by calling it brunch. I also learned Brooklyn > wherever the fuck you live in NYC.

But that's not all. I learned that your pockets get raped continuously by the city's cost of living. Taxi's have better monitors than my desktop PC. Jazmine's floor is rather comfortable when you're drunk. I learned I can navigate the subway system like a big boy and make it to my bus home just as they are boarding. Thus I avoid the pre-boarding security check and I don't get caught with the rifle taped to my leg. I kid, I kid...or do I?

Monday, June 9, 2008

Jobby Job

My week will consist of job hunting. Though our economy points out that it is not hunting season. I decided to finally get out there and get a job that doesn't come in plastic, in ounces or one that has the possibility of making my criminal jacket thicker than my winter one. I hope you appreciate my jest, I think I pulled off the beginning of this blog post quite nicely, although my dear friend Trickah would tell me to "get over myself".

Anyway, the topic is employment. And me getting some. And me getting money, getting fresh and using fresh for me to get some. I kid, I kid (I'm on a roll, I need to deprive myself of sleep more often). This is my first job...if I get hired. At this moment I am thinking about finding something in either journalism, printing, or at any music store I can find. By journalism I mean, me talking myself into a job at the local newspaper, putting rubber bands around freshly printed papers. Whatever get's me that ole foot in the door!

As far as printing goes, sure why not? If I can find a screen printing business around here that will let me in without any experience besides iron on cartoon character shirts that I made when I was a kid, I'm in business! And last on my favored jobs list, music. Anything involving music. If I can get a job making ivory piano keys shine like Seal's forehead after singing "Fly Like An Eagle" for 2 days straight, I'm down for it. If I can get a job at Guitar Center selling guitar picks with the Grateful Dead bears emblazoned on them, I'm down for it.

All in all this is my mission. I have accepted it. I gots to get me that bread, skrilla, scratch, cheese, dividends etc. After failing to get an internship at local music studios I must find a way to be productive this summer, in this heat. Still thinking about being a phone sex operator or any other voice freelance work though. If you need an intimidating voice, I'm your man! A Minister Farrakhan voice? I'm your man! OK, that's enough pimping my services for today. Have a good one.