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Wednesday, August 9 12:00 AM ET

BBspot Mailbag

Now you too can enjoy my Inbox without the annoying spam. Every week I get some amazing e-mail. Some amazing because of the sheer cluelessness of the sender, some because of the time and energy that went into crafting them and some are just simply amazing.

Swiss Army Suggestions

I asked for requests on Swiss Army type knives in the BBlog and got a few suggestions from readers...

From: Joe
Sent: Friday, August 04, 2006 3:25 PM
Subject: Swiss Army Knife

I recommend the Deluxe Tinker.

I carried one for years until I went to see W speak in Canton, and it was seized as a WMD. They were supposed to keep it for me, but a gun-banning Democrat apparently snuck in and took it first. ;)

Anyway, it's very pocket sized, and has two blades, three screwdrivers (including a phillips), the requisite bottle openers, tweezers, and toothpicks - plus small pliers and scissors, both of which I have found invaluable.

I also have a translucent gray SAK that's the ultimate computer geek tool, with all sorts of screwdriver fittings, etc., but it's wildly too big to carry in my pocket. And I still have a regular Tinker that I was given back in '92 or so as a groomsman gift - and it outlasted the marriage.

Hope you enjoy whichever knife you choose. Just leave it in your car when you go to a political rally.

And watch your fingers.

If I watch my fingers, I'll bump my head.

From: Alyssa
Sent: Saturday, August 05, 2006 5:29 PM
Subject: Swiss army knife

Second one's my fav. Good luck!

Nice, but not really what I'm looking for.

From: Phil
Sent: Tuesday, August 08, 2006 9:46 AM
Subject: Swiss-army knife thoughts.

1) BBspot is a great website.

2) I'd suggest going for a leatherman-style, rather than a Swiss-army style.

Swiss Army knives, for any reasonable amount of functionality, get too wide, too fast and tend to include a lot of stuff that you'll never find a good use for (or, given your track record, you /will/ find a use for but will sadly die in the execution thereof). I speak of things like the "awl", "fish scaler", "saw", 3-7 /other/ knife blades besides the big one that's the only one you really need in the first case.

The Leatherman Juice S2 (which I carry and use every day after having gotten one as a groomsman's gift) has a very pocket-friendly profile (fits unnoticed in the little change/knife pocket on my jeans) and has all the stuff you might actually use on a daily basis - 3 flathead and 1 philips screwdriver, a knife blade, scissors, bottle/can opener, pliers, wire-cutter/stripper.

Hope this helps, but I've got the horrible fear that you're just setting yourself up for a gruesome (yet oddly humorous) death in the near future if you insist on always having a knife-type-device on your person. Good luck.

These knives look more like what I need, and I promise that if I die a horribly comic death because of it I'll write about it.

From: Jeff
Sent: Tuesday, August 08, 2006 1:01 PM
Subject: Swiss-Army-type knife

After all the mishaps you've had, I can't believe you're asking your readers to recommend sharp objects. I recommend that you stay away from them (or at least the knives with built-in scissors).

I won't hold anybody liable, and I might get some good injury stories out of it.

Weekly Limerick

The winner of this year's Geek Limerick contest has volunteered to write a weekly limerick for BBspot. I haven't decided where to put it yet, so this week's I'll put in the Mailbag..

From: Seth

Though he rants against all of the Jews,
Gibson's films will still get good reviews.
 His career will survive;
 Lethal Weapon Part 5
Features Mel in a car with some booze.

Site Suggestions

I got a few site suggestions the past week, and one irate complaint...

From: Karafias
Sent: Thursday, August 03, 2006 11:48 PM
Subject: RSS for your blog?

So I use RSS for your site, it's nifty to always know when new articles are up. Anyways, I notice there is no RSS feed for your blog. Perhaps that would be a good future improvement for your site?

Ask and ye shall receive.

From: Steve
Sent: Tuesday, August 01, 2006 4:01 AM
Subject: Feature request

Have you thought about adding a way for your readers to add and read comments about your daily links? I think that would be a very nice thing to have.

I thought about asking for a way to do that for articles as well, but on second thought, I prefer the way it is for those - folks send you e-mail, and then we read your picks in the Mailbag.

I've often thought about adding comments to the link, but didn't want to bother with policing the spammers and goatse posters.

Sent: Sunday, August 06, 2006 7:44 AM
Subject: Re: Dead Baby Joke

I've been a long time reader of BBSpot (must be a good 4 years or so now), the RSS even has a place right on the bookmarks bar, taking up valuable real-estate (I have a lot I have to check daily), but I've become steadily impatient with the BBloopers, both in frequency and content. It used to be great satirical articles constantly, but now its just a daily 'mistake' on some random website. More often than not it's a completely vague connection rather than a legitimate mistake, and even more often some 'hilarious' auto-generated advertisement that may have a connection in content to the subject of the article that has the supposed BBlooper.

Now the latest one, titled "Dead Baby Joke" has popped up in my RSS feed. I clicked on it, and something has made me wonder where you guys have slipped up. At what point does having a laugh at the expense of a child's death become funnier than having dumb people desperately looking for an nonexistent Nigerian millionaire. I'll tell you, never. You should keep your sense of humor in check, because there are some things that funny, and then there are things like this that you just don't make jokes about. Rather than having absolute tasteless crap like this take up space on my bookmarks bar, I think I'd rather have something I, or any other person with half a sense of humour, would want to read.

I actually hope that you would post this in your mailbag, or at least run a poll to gather the opinions of other visitors to your website about the BBloopers. I honestly think that they only serve to drag down an other wise great website. I really would just cut them out of your site all together as all they seem to be (and truthfully probably are) just filler material for when you can't be bothered to think up a new article. Oh, while I'm here doing this I might as well point out that the whole Flash Games thing is a bit of a waste of time. We all know how to get to for this kind of time wasting rubbish.

By the way, this is the first time that I've ever actually complained about anything in any form of media. I actually do like and care about your website, which is why I am writing in. Do you think that first time visitors are going to be amused by visiting your site, and the first thing that hits their eyes is DEAD BABY JOKE LOL? Not anyone with any good sense of humor. Please keep it more like The Register rather than like 4Chan.

Pretty harsh I think. Each week on BBspot I find 35 new links, post 5 new BBloopers, post five new content pieces, make fun of 5 personal ads, create a new poll, write up the BBspot update, and recently post every day in the BBlog, so when he says "I can't be bothered to think up a new article" rings false to me.

The link is entitled Dead Baby Joke and I posted a warning on the home page about it. I don't do tasteless stuff very often, but this was funny.

When you put up so much new content each week, it's likely that there will be sections people don't like. Some people come just for the links and think the articles suck. Some people like top 11 lists, others think they are trite. Some people couldn't care less about the BBlog, others complain when I don't post there (thanks mom!). And trust me, there are some people who even like the BBloopers. I realize that not everything will appeal to everyone, but as a business I need to offer enough content to enough people to keep doing this as a job.

What do you other readers think?

That's all for this week!

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