to the person who tried to steal my identity

hacker-cartoonTo the person who tried to steal my identity, or hack my online account, or whatever it was you were trying to do, a few things:

1.) In case you didn’t notice, you failed. You failed because you were stupid, you failed because you did a sloppy job of whatever it was you were trying to do, and you failed, mostly, because I’m smarter than you are. I got notice of your attempt about 8 seconds after you made it, and I’d put a stop to it about 30 seconds after that. You may think your kung fu is awesome, but mine is better.

2.) As a side note, geez, you picked a crappy target. Not just because it was never going to work, but also because, dude, there was hardly any money in that account. This is like the time someone stole my backpack at the Theatre Arts building on campus, only to learn there was a notebook, a pen, and fifty cents inside. They actually ditched it about 50 feet away from where they’d taken it — probably totally disgusted at the slim pickings. I have to imagine you felt the same.

3.) You’re still a scumbag, though. A lazy, sitting in front of their computer and trying to find ways to take other people’s money scumbag. For the record.

4.) You didn’t get a cent of my money, and you weren’t able to compromise any of my accounts. I’ve stepped up encryption, initiated fraud protection on my credit report and there isn’t a thing you or any other run of the mill thief could do to me at this point. But — thanks a lot, loser. Because of you I spent a lot of my quality time on the phone with customer service agents, waiting on hold, taking notes, arguing with various institutions, and being aggravated in general. You didn’t steal any money (not for lack of trying) but you stole my time, which is even more valuable, so you pissed me off pretty good.

5.) Lastly, I have a suggestion. Try not screwing over your fellow man, or if you must, do us all a favor and use your pathetic skills to go after bigger, more reprehensible fish. Instead of trying to steal from your brothers in the trenches, next time go after some morally corrupt corporation. Preferably one of the ones that kept me on hold the longest over the past week. One of those under-taxed, given-personhood-status, total scum of the universe ones that have plundered our economy, spoiled our environment, or tried to get involved in the day-to-day operations of my uterus. Next time, screw over someone who deserves it, not someone who has $77.25 in a savings account and wasn’t born yesterday.

earning money swagging

SwagBucksTwitterLogoI waste a lot of time online. On my phone, on my iPad, the computer. While I’m watching TV, while we’re eating dinner, whatever. I’m using surfing around aimlessly, in between more vitally important tasks like refreshing my Facebook feed.

A couple months ago I was obsessed with playing QuizUp. Like, constantly. I was as focused as I was back in 1993, when my friend Paula and I spent countless hours playing Yahtzee on her Apple II (high scorers forever!). And after awhile, it started seeming pointless. All these hours answering questions about “Friends” and “How I Met Your Mother”, and nothing to show for it. Surely my time futzing around online could be put to better use.

As a side note, right around then, I learned to great sadness that we wouldn’t be getting $200 of onboard credit on our next Disney Cruise (maybe 2016, maybe 2017). You used to get this, along with a discount, any time you booked a return cruise while still on the ship, and then you could just keep moving the reservation until you were ready to cruise again, even for years and years. Well, Disney doesn’t let you do that anymore — you have to actually take the cruise within 18 months, or you lose the 200 bucks of ship credit. Bummer.

So, I decided to put my online time to better use. Without making a chore of it, without spending much more time online than I used to anyhow, I started spending time on Swagbucks. I had an account there already but had never really tried to make much of it. The theory is, you do surveys, watch videos and ads, maybe sign up for special offiers (I never do those, though, as they often cost money, which defeats the purpose), and earn Swagbucks. And you can trade Swagbucks in for gift cards, to places like Target and Amazon, or even for straight-out money, through your PayPal account.

I’ve been “Swagbucking” for just short of 2 months now, and I’ve earned $100. Yep, that’s 100 bucks! 🙂 Yay! My goal was to at least replace that $200 onboard credit for our future cruise, and I’m half-way there already. Now I’m going to see how much we can put towards the cruise altogether, since it’s years away it might be a nice tidy sum.

But, it’s not a job. Some days I spend more time on it than I do on others. Sometimes I rack up a lot of Swagbucks, and sometimes just a 100 or so (cash equivalent: one dollar). I refuse to make it a chore. And it’s probably not worth your time if you don’t surf as aimlessly as I do, or if you don’t have the spare time I admittedly do. But for me, it’s a far better way to spend my aimless time online than anything else I’ve done.