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No blog pick today...let me tell you why (longest post ever, but please read) [-]
Well, yesterday my wife got a call saying that a delivery man was on their way to our apartment with our lost piece of luggage (if you haven't been keeping up with this story, this luggage contained both our digital camera and camcorder, as well as all the pictures and videos from our trip). So, this is great news, right? Wrong!

The bag gets here, we open it up, take out the camera bag and it's empty! Someone stole our cameras and all our memories! And there's no doubt it was stolen...to get to these cameras someone would have opened a latch, undid a zipper, taken the camera bag out of the larger bag, undid the velcro, undid ANOTHER zipper, and taken out the cameras.

Now, the value of these electronics is somewhere in the neighborhood of $700. They were my Christmas present to my wife, and my wife's birthday present to me. Both were bought full knowing that we were going on this trip, and wanting to be able to remember it forever. But what's more than that, is all the memories that we will never get back. We saved up a long time to make this trip (we're both just students), and we took a ton of pictures and video under the assumption that chances are we'd probably never be back (we wanted to make the trip before kids were holding us back).

So, there's a good chance that the airline won't be refunding us for our lost luggage. There's a thing called the Montreal Convention that says that high-ticket items such as electronics and jewelry should be kept with the passenger at all times and not checked into the cargo hold. Of course, this was our intention, but in light of the hightened security due to the terrorist threats on transatlantic flights, this was not an optiotn. However, my wife read in the New York Times that despite this situation, they must abide to the convention. In any case though, I don't see any plausible situation that sees us receiving any sort of compensation for our lost memories.

It makes me sick that people like this exist out there. That someone would exploit the situation, with lots of people vulnerable and scared, to rob us (and I'm sure many others) of valuable goods and other priceless intangibles.

So, I spent most of yesterday on the phone, bitching and arguing and flat-out screaming at idiots who wouldn't even acknowledge that yes my stuff was stolen. They wouldn't use the word stolen, they kept referring to it as "missing." Anyway, I get done with that and log on here, thinking I'll make a quick pick for tomorrow and I have something along the lines of the following comment waiting for me to moderate:
"Bobby, I can't believe you are charging people to be on your shitty little blog. This blog used to be cool, but now I see that you were just in it to screw us all out of our money. "Premium Blogs" are about a big a scam as those "I'm a Nigerian king and I need your help and will pay you hansomely" emails. And, of course you won't let this comment through to your blog...guess you never heard of something called "free speech""

So, first of all, this person doesn't know what free speech is. If you think you can go into "Burger King," stand there and continuously yell "Burger King sucks, don't eat here," and NOT be removed by the police, you are dead wrong.

Secondly, I'm not CHARGING anyone. The link exchange is going on the same as before. "Premium Blogs" are an optional donation! OPTIONAL!!! And what's more in exchange for this OPTIONAL donation, I am providing you a service in the form of additional blog exposure and traffic.

Plus, it just makes me sick that I've angered this person so much when with all that has happened to me recently, even if I did forcefully "charge" every single person I've linked to the minimum $1.00 of "Premium Blogs," and even if all of them did willingly fork over the money, I still wouldn't have enough money to recoup the losses I've suffered from theft.

After reading this, I deleted it, and said "F this," I'm going to bed. So, really...am I a bad person here? (I'll be back tomorrow with our first "Premium Saturdays")
26 Comments:
  • At 12:22 PM, said…

    wow. So sorry to hear about the photos & videos. I know the camera & equipment can be replaced, eventually, but the photos never can. You have my heart-felt sympathy on this matter!
    Does your home insurance or car insurance have a travel option to look into -- or do you have AAA? Sometimes there are hidden clauses in these that can be used. I wish you the best in dealing with the beaurocratic crap that comes with such a loss.
    And I see nothing wrong with deleting negative comments about your site -- it is yours afterall. If someone doesn't care for it, then good riddance, they can go somewhere else. Let us who love your site enjoy it! Looking forward to your first Saturday Premium Bestest Blog.
    Get some rest & try to relax ~ morgen

     
  • At 12:37 PM, said…

    hey of course u r not a bad person here..just chill !

    people do seem to be quick at snapping at others.... but most ppl tht protest too much do it on the other persons property because thts the only way to get the other persons attention !

    I put commnet moderation on mine, i love the delete key on my laptop those times.its too bad u cant do the same with people u meet :)

     
  • At 12:44 PM, said…

    Dude. That seriously blows. I hope you're still going to try to write a letter to the airline. Maybe at least you can get some vouchers or coupons or something. I'm sure the baggage handlers had a field day when it was announced everyone had to check EVERYTHING. Motherfuckers.

    That guy's an imbocile. He obviously A. didn't pay attention to the details of your guidelines, B. doesn't understand anything about marketing and advertising, and C. is a douchebag.

    Just ignore him. I'd say 99% of the people who link to you don't feel that way. Either they see it as an opportunity to get some really cheap extra exposure for their blog (and really, that $1 we would pay you to be a premium blog would result in getting dozens, if not hundreds more readers, which could result in many more ad clicks for the blogger, which = $$$, so it pays for itself), or they don't feel the need to promote their blog any more than their regular listing. But getting so riled up about an optional feature? That takes a special kind of stupid.

     
  • At 1:56 PM, said…

    You're not in the wrong. It's as simple as that. You're not in the wrong, in either situation. If only the world didn't have people who ignored logic and would stop and think for just one second longer. Sadly enough, that's not life, but life doesn't stop. Keep on rocking with this blog, man, it's awesome, and good luck with the camera fiasco.

     
  • At 2:10 PM, said…

    BG,
    I would simply say to your detractors, "If I'm in this MERELY for the money, I'm a pretty stupid entrepreneur." You are not gouging anyone, you are not DEMANDING anything from anyone. There are no victims here, just volunteers. Myself, I find your site has helped me to join a community of bloggers and helps me to push my own site very cheaply. Sorry about the theft. Keep fighting. I had a problem with an online travel service last year ($110 a day to rent a car because no other cars were available???), and guess what? I got reimbursed for the huge amount over what was quoted me. Here's what I did, right off the bat. Enlisted the help of the NYS attorney general's office. And, believe me, once Lalalocity saw that, it got their attention, along with letters to AGs in Florida and Texas. So, bring out the heavy artillery early in your efforts with the airline.

     
  • At 2:12 PM, said…

    p.s. your memories are not really taken away...many travel writers (Paul Theroux, Pete McCarthy) have written great books deliberately written w/o images, except for word images

     
  • At 2:38 PM, said…

    Paulie:

    I know I still have my mental memories, but if you knew my wife, if you have seen our apartment, you would realize how important pictures are to us. Look at any wall, any table, and you'll see a picture frame with wedding pictures, honeymoon pictures, pictures of our dogs, pictures at the beach, pictures from when we were just dating, pictures of us as little kids, and of course, lots of pictures of friends and family...

     
  • At 3:07 PM, said…

    I'll be honest with you. I tried to read and understand what you are saying. You are too complicated. I'm a simple person. I write simplyand I understand only logicless writing. I can understand logic. But not twisted logic. That throws me down.

     
  • At 3:29 PM, said…

    Wow, this sucks. I'm so sorry you are having to go through this. Also, don't worry yourself about some lame commenter, you can't please everyone. There are plenty of us here who understand what you are doing with the Premium Blogs thing and think your site rocks big time! :-)

    Go read some blog submissions and have a great day, despite it all. It will get better.

    Karen H.

     
  • At 4:44 PM, said…

    I would be surprised if you are the only ones on your flight that this has happened to. Search the net and see if you can find other in your situation and make a huge fuss over it. Try you're local news papers, etc. If you make enough fuss the airline will have to do something about it.

    Thiefts from luggage has suddenly become a huge problem here in the UK. This week a flight arrived at Gatwick and every bag had been slashed with a knive. A lot of high value items were missing and an enormous storm has broken out.

    The airlines know very well that it has happened and I suspect that they will be embarist into action.

    If an airline had lost my camera I would be shouting from the roof tops until I got compensation. My camera equipment is eveything to me. As you say, nothing will replace your photographs.

    Good luck with your fight.

     
  • At 5:15 PM, said…

    I'm very sorry for your loss. I know how it feels to invest a lot in creating memories that you assume you'll have for the rest of your life, only to lose them. I sincerely hope that someone from the airline/airport gets held liable for what happened to your valuables.

     
  • At 5:31 PM, said…

    Sorry for the losers out there

     
  • At 6:02 PM, said…

    I am also sorry to hear about the loss of your cameras. Yes, it pretty much sucks and the airline situation/ illogic sure doesn't make it better. I think you should keep at it, becuase they think that you will get tired and go away and that they (the airline) won't have to reimburse you for your loss. Don't step away from it. They just want to win by wearing you down- so don't let them.


    On a positive note, at least you got to take this great vacation with your wife! That's got to be a good thing.

    Take it easy!

     
  • At 7:36 PM, said…

    Dude, that stinks for real.

    My camera was a gift to me, so it wouldn't be so much of a punch if it got stolen (money-wise).

    But man, I'm sorry, I guess some people just live wrong and steal things.

    Hopefully you'll recover quickly from that...maybe like find a camera as good or better, but on sale or something.

    Bummer!

     
  • At 8:37 PM, said…

    Wow, well. Wow. I know this is too little too late, but perhaps next time you could take the memory card or tape or whatever out of the camera and camcorder? It's better to lose just the electonics and not the photos with them, right?

     
  • At 9:25 PM, said…

    Bobby,

    Sorry for your bad experiences and losses on your vacation. I think that the airlines are responsible for most of the grief. I've heard numerous stories about the employees.

    I just returned from a vacation at the beach myself(MB-SC). We drove down with my wife's live-in grandkids and I had a wonderful time being alone. The peace and quiet was great. Didn't even take a computer.

    About the negative comments, don't worry about them and use them to your advantage. No one that comes to your site is forced to respond in any way.

    As long as your are giving free publicity, everyone is happy. I've followed and been part of your blog since the beginning. You have put a lot of work into this endeavour and have probably helped a lot of blogs get traffic.

    As I stated above, use the negative comments to your advantage and don't erase them. You could make one great post about these and the nature of people.

    I wish you and your wife the best and will start updating my blogs again tomorrow.

    God Bless,

    C. Oxford

     
  • At 10:13 PM, said…

    I am so sorry to hear about the stolen camera and equipment... It is a rather sick idea to go through other people's luggage and then steal stuff from inside of it... and all in a high security area.

    Wish you all the best in at least getting a compensation from the airline...

     
  • At 1:44 AM, said…

    Really sorry to hear about your camera etc. I know how you feel. Our iPod was stolen by a tradesman while doing work in our house. Of course, we can't prove they did it, but we feel so violated.

     
  • At 11:41 AM, said…

    Ouch!! I think you had a bad day. There's nothing I can say that will replace $700 (plus the photos of your happy times) but now you;ve got a reason to go again next year. I'm really sorry it happened and karma will catch up the idiots who did it eventually. Like Morgen said you need to look into insurance and everything.

    And on the other point: I think this is a great blog. It's nice that you give peopple the choice to get extra exposure without losing what they already have. Thanks for doing a wicked job.

     
  • At 1:13 PM, said…

    It's a bad feeling to be robbed. It's a good feeling to be able to vent your frustration on a blog and be heard by your audience of supporters.

    Good feelings. Bad feelings. At least when we have feelings, we know we are alive!

    Sorry for your losses, Bobby.

     
  • At 1:31 PM, said…

    Bobby-

    Find out about the airport's security cameras. If they will not check on this, contact an attorney. No airline wants to be sued for it is lousy publicity.

    I still defend your right to charge or do whatever you want. I really enjoy your blog.

    Bud

     
  • At 2:04 PM, said…

    Oh that really sucks. And you know it seems it's most likely EMPLOYEES of the airport SECURITY division that did it! It's such a feeling of violation when as a nation we've already been violated enough by causes created by the terrorists.

    And about the comment of your "shitty little blog"... Blogs are personal. Your site, do what you want! I willingly donated to your blog, my traffic did increase, and I got a whole lot more return and pleasure from giving you those pennies than I ever get from the occasional "donation" I willingly make to the Lottery guys :)

    Blog on dude... you have a well put together site. So sorry about your shitty trip experience.

     
  • At 4:35 PM, said…

    Another lost camera, sort of... http://lostcamera.blogspot.com/2006/02/camera-unlost-but-not-quite-found.html

     
  • At 2:41 AM, said…

    Sorry to hear about it. Hopefully both of you will soon get over it.

     
  • At 4:11 PM, said…

    Found your blog through a friend (http://a-homesteading-neophyte.blogspot.com/) and this was the first entry I read in total. I'm so sorry! That sucks! All of it. Here's hoping the thief is a blogger and comes across your story and returns your footage, if not the equipment.

     
  • At 4:14 PM, said…

    P.S. I have a friend who wraps her dirty underwear around anything she cares about in her suitcase :)

     
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