I have got myself on this Freecycle mailing list, for reasons which I can no longer remember. They facilitate the passing on of unwanted household goods with the stated aim of keeping stuff ‘out of landfill’.
So if you have an old TV or rabbit hutch or pair of roller skates you no longer want, you can easily give them to someone else. That’s the idea. You can also ask for things too. The rules forbid being too fussy or specific in your ‘Wanted’ postings. After all, you shouldn’t look a gift-horse in the mouth. (What is a gift-horse, by the way?)
One posting today caught my eye:
OFFER: Used pillows
Re-offered due to no pick up.
Description Have at least 4 used pillows available.
Can be used as pillows or for cat/dog bed.
Pick up ASAP. Please state when you can collect.
This evening or tomorrow-sat am would be good. no time wasters.
As I read through it, I hatched a plan to ask a few questions about the pillows. Colour, age, filling material – that sort of thing. I was going to arrange a collection time, and then just not show up.
Imagine my sense of frustration and disappointent when I got to the last sentence. That put paid to my little scheme!
I have been browsing greetings cards, and wondering what a visiting Martian would think of our quaint custom. In particular, what it would deduce about 21st century Western society from the preponderance of weak jokes about sex, golf, ageing and alcohol.
What kind of sloppy web design lets me sign in and poke around my messgages, view my watch list and purchase history, and do other signed-in things but then bounces me out when I actually try to bid on something?
Come on, eBay. I know I am not the only one in this frustrating loop. Can’t you stop counting all the money you are making for a moment and attend to this basic fault?
Whilst you are at it, why not make the whole website a bit more slick and up-to-date? eBay still feels like it was put together by some college nerds back in the ’90s.
In August 2010 I wrote about joining Quidco. It’s a cashback service for a wide variety of retailers – both online and bricks-and-mortar.
I’m not talking about loyalty points or Air Miles either. They pay real money into your bank. Sometimes the deals are quite mouth-watering and so far I have received over £300 from them.
What’s the catch? None, really. It’s just another way in which retailers can compete for your business. Quidco do take the first £5 per annum from your cashback earnings which I think is very fair.
They also pay you just to walk in to participating shops, whether you buy anything or not! For this to work you need the Quidco app on your smartphone. It uses GPS to tell you what tempting deals are on offer nearby, and if a store is offering a ‘check-in’ incentive you just tap a button on your phone when you are inside the premises to register your presence. OK so it’s usually only 10p or 15p but if you are passing by anyway it seems churlish not to spend a moment browsing their wares.
Click here to join Quidco