revjim.net

October 31st, 2003:

Helicopters

[ People ]

Humble Roots
(click to enlarge)

Helicopters

Zoe

West Lafayette, IN

Nikon D100

Road to Somewhere other than Here

[ Nature ]

Humble Roots
(click to enlarge)

Road to Somewhere other than Here

Grapevine Lake
Grapevine, TX

Nikon D100

A Piece of History

[ Nature ]

Humble Roots
(click to enlarge)

A Piece of History

Grapevine Lake
Grapevine, TX

Nikon D100

Humble Roots

[ Nature ]

Humble Roots
(click to enlarge)

Humble Roots

West Lafayette, IN

Nikon D100

Fingers of Fall

[ Nature ]

Fingers of Fall
(click to enlarge)

Fingers of Fall

West Lafayette, IN

Nikon D100

Blurred Reflection

[ Objects ]

Blurred Reflection
(click to enlarge)

Blurred Reflection

Texas Ren Faire
Plantersville, TX

Nikon D100

Trees of Marble

[ Places ]

Trees of Marble
(click to enlarge)

Trees of Marble

Texas Ren Faire
Plantersville, TX

Nikon D100

Cell Phone Service Providers

Ugh.

Both T-Mobile and AT&T wireless offer the phone I want with "affordable" (relatively speaking) plans. There are a few differences.

First, let’s look at T-Mobile.

The phones we’d probably buy will total $499.98. $249.98 of that will be refunded via mail in rebate. That leaves $249.98 in equipment charges. Our plan, for two lines of service, will be $49.99 plus an extra $10/mo for unlimited nights (we don’t actually need the unlimited nights, I just added it in to make the plans match better). This gives us 400 peak minutes, unlimited nights and weekends and unlimited mobile-to-mobile minutes for $59.99/mo. Add $9.99 per line for unlimited t-zones (internet) service, and our monthly bill is $79.97. Each line has a $35 activation charge which adds $70 to our one time expenses.

To recap, that’s $319.98 (+$250 in rebates) out of pocket now plus $79.97/mo.

Now let’s look at AT&T Wireless.

The same phones as above will run us $99.98. There are no rebates to deal with. Our plan, for two lines of service, will be $59.98/mo. This includes 600 peak minutes, unlimited nights and weekends, and 1000 mobile-to-mobile minutes. Add $19.99 for 8MB of internet serviceon my phone and $12.99 for 4MB of internet service on her phone and our monthly bill is $92.96. Each line has a $36 activation charge which adds $72 to our one time expenses. Additionally, if we’re willing to sign a 2yr contract, our bill we decrease by $10/mo. But let’s assume that we don’t, for now.

To recap, that’s $171.98 out of pocket now plus $92.96/mo.

If you look at the additional out of pocket costs for going with T-Mobile and divide it over the length of the contract you increase T-Mobile’s monthly bill by $12.33, bringing it to $92.30. If you ignore those few extra cents, over the course of one year, each provider will cost us the same amount of money. However, with AT&T Wireless, we’d be getting 200 extra minutes of peak usage, but would have to deal with those pesky bandwidth limitations and the possible overage charges there.

In order to make my next calculation easier to read, let’s stretch the cost of equipment out over the contract period for both providers. With monthly service charges and equipment, T-Mobile would cost $106.64/mo, and AT&T wireless would be $107.29/mo.

Now, let’s consider the differences over a 2yr contract. AT&T wireless waives the activation fees on a 2yr contract, T-Mobile does not. Additionally, AT&T wireless decreases the cost of each additional line of service by $10 on a shared plan with a 2yr contract. So, let’s do the math. T-Mobile, stays unchanged. AT&T wireless one time fees will decrease by $72 and monthly fees will decrease by $10. That means, over two years, T-Mobile would cost $93.30/mo while AT&T wireless would be $87.13/mo.

AT&T wireless is $0.65 more per month with a 1yr and $6.17 LESS per month with a 2yr.

I get MORE minutes with AT&T wireless, but we don’t really use them. I get unlimited mobile-to-mobile with T-Mobile, and Justin, Joel, Emily, Brad and Morgan are all on T-Mobile. Those are the people I call most so, even if we did need the extra 200 minutes, that would more than make up for them. Additionally, we don’t really need unlimited nights with T-Mobile, which decreases our cost by $10/mo in both cases. On top of that, trying to deal with 8MB/mo of internet bandwidth may or may not work out. I’ve never had my usage measured that way, so I don’t really know what to expect. Add to all of that the fact that I don’t really want to sign a 2yr contract, and T-Mobile starts looking better and better, But, I also don’t want to shell out $569.96 in equipment charges right now and then wait for my rebates to come in the mail. That has always scared me. So, in that respect, AT&T wireless looks better.

Through in one additional fact… AT&T wireless has better phones. In this particular case, we’re getting phones that both providers have. But, overall, AT&T has a wider selection, the choices are newer technology and they seem to be more on top of it.

I don’t know. It’s all too confusing. Give me apples to apples damn it. Let me tell you what I need, and you make a plan around it. Stop trying to fuck me everyway that you can. I hate the numbers game. I hate the "well, what if I use more than that one month, and less than that the next". It’s like buying car insurance: "should I get the rental reimbursement, or not? Hey, honey, do you think we’ll get in a wreck in the next, oh, 12 months?".

What do you think would be best for me?

And yes… I do overthink everything.

Halloween costumes and social stigma

Every Haloween, if I’m given the occasion to dress in costume, I generally try to select something humorous, slightly statement making, and perhaps just a tad bit offensive but not enough to really piss anyone off.

I was speaking with a co-worker just now, a black woman, who informed me that, one year for Haloween, she was a Ku Klux Klan member. She wore the entire white hooded outfit and carried a large cross. I laughed and told her that I didn’t believe her but she insists that it’s true and has promised to bring pictures on Monday.

Now, despite my comfort level with myself, my social beliefs, and my idea of humor and light-heartedness, I believe I would find such a costume too offensive to wear, myself. I wouldn’t be offended to see someone else in it, but that’s too much for me, personally, to bear. The same would go for any costume that would spark hateful feelings in massive numbers of people. But, of course, there is a very fine line here. I wouldn’t have any problem dressing as the UniBomber, Timothy McVey, Osama Bin Laden or Ted Bundy. I would not, however, dress as Hitler, a KKK member, or any of the boys from Columbine. I’m not exactly sure what causes me to draw the lines where I draw them. While the discussion of that line within myself might be an interesting topic to discus, I more interested in another aspect.

What would be more offensive to you: A white man dressed as a KKK member or a black woman dresses as a KKK member? Or would they be equally offensive? Or perhaps not offensive at all?

Discuss.