----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ ----------------------------------------------- */ The Fabulous Adventures of Astera: Writer/Actress for Hire: More Bizarro Craigslist

The Fabulous Adventures of Astera: Writer/Actress for Hire

Meet Astera (aka: me), a star in her own mind. Our plucky little heroine has embarked on not one but two difficult, low-paying career paths: writing and acting. Witness the menial jobs! The unreasonable demands! The quirky friends and family! And the glimmer of success just ahead! Through it all, Astera maintains her core beliefs: 1) She is destined to be fabulous 2) Everything is more fun with a cocktail.

Monday, May 02, 2005

More Bizarro Craigslist

Craigslist has been an unceasing font of amusement for me lately! And, dear readers, I want to share that amusement with you. Yes, I'm unselfish like that.

This latest Craiglist post is far too long and complex for me to reproduce here, so please visit the creative gigs section and read it for yourselves. You won't be disappointed. Here's the gist of it: a bunch of geeks are looking for someone who can come up with a snappy name for their domicile. Why? Well, as they say themselves, "because we're geeks, that's why, and we like to name things. That way we know what domain to get for the house servers." Oooh-kay. Sure. That's perfectly reasonable. They then offer a bulleted list of requirements, complete with footnotes! Your reward, should you come up with the winning apartment name? Baked goods, an invitation to the housewarming party and $5 U.S. cash money. But hey, that actually works out to a decent per-word rate.

Here's what I don't get: How is it that these people can come up with a post that, when printed out, takes up two full pages, but they can't come up with two or three words to name their apartment? Clearly, they have a strong command of the English language. The post is spelled and punctuated correctly, which is more than I can say for much of the writing that has come across my desk from so-called professional writers. The posters are creative and have enough of a sense of humor to come up with lines like, "The contest begins immediately and ends when either we receive a submission we all like or we give up hope and faith in humanity. If redundancy becomes a problem, I will post rejected submissions here and/or set up a website with a database that will filter the mail and do so for me automatically." Oh. Well, maybe that last part wasn't supposed to be funny, but it was funny to me. (And according to AP style, it really should be "Web site," but perhaps they're using their own house style. Just an aside.)

Maybe they can't come up with a name because they are computer geeks, not word nerds. There is a difference, you know. Computer geeks care about domain names and programming languages. Word nerds, like me, care about AP style and whether "life cycle" should be one word or two. (It's two words, my executive editor be damned!) I know I'm not a geek because I have no idea what the "hoopy frood" to which these posters refer is. That's okay. (Yeah, yeah, AP says it should be OK.) I'm happier being a word nerd.

But I digress. This post just proves my point about Craigslist. In its depth, you can find just about anything you're looking for. And even some things you're not.

2 Comments:

  • At 12:13 PM, Anonymous Relsqui said…

    I'm going to make this fully recursive in a minute by linking back to it from my LJ. But I wanted to answer some of your rhetorical questions first. (That's right, I'm starting a sentence with a conjunction. Muahaha!)

    Of the three of us, I'm the one who actually wrote the thing, and you and I have a lot in common word-nerd-wise. My excuse is that I'm the child of a lawyer and a proofreader. (My sister and I were each given a copy of Strunk & White at a young age.) That explains the punctuation. As for being able to come up with two pages of ad and not a house name . . . that hadn't occured to me, but it's hilarious.

    Actually, we did come up with a few possible house names, but none of them really stuck, so we figured we'd open it up to suggestions. It got me a lot of interesting emails, including yours.

    For the record, the "if redundancy becomes a problem . . ." bit was indeed a joke. It benefits from the ambiguity, though. (I COULD actually do that, but it would be way more trouble than it's worth.)

    I love craigslist. It's free, it's easy to use, it's honest-to-god useful, and we got about twenty times as many responses to that oddity as we did when we were looking for a housemate. (I'm told that ad was pretty good too, actually.)

     
  • At 12:15 PM, Anonymous relsqui said…

    P.S. Read Douglas Adams's Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy for the hoopy frood reference. (It's in the movie too, but subtlely and without explanation.)

    P.P.S. What the hell? Blogger will let me italicize but not underline? That's dumb.

     

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