Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Facebook Groups II: Freecycling With a Vengeance

In addition to the fun and frolic of my Moms in My Town Facebook group, I joined a Freecycling group, partly because I wanted to get rid of some stuff and liked the idea of giving it to people who specifically needed it and partly because one of my friends is an admin, so I was already seeing it and I figured I should contribute something to pay back for the entertainment value alone.

The purpose of the group is supposed to be solely to keep things out of the landfill - it's been specifically stated that it's not a charity. Many people in the group, myself included, are bad at remembering this. An offered item is posted, and then people are supposed to comment that they're interested. They are not supposed to comment on why their need for the item is greater than anyone else's. Many of them do. You're allowed to give your item to whoever you want, of course - either the first person who comments, the first person who can pick it up, or by FOP, Fair Offer Price, which means you wait a little longer for people who aren't on Facebook as often, and then choose someone by draw or however else you want. You think if I offer kids' clothes and there's a single mom in the mix, I don't give them to her? And then I feel bizarrely guilty, because it's not supposed to be a charity. There's this weird, playing-God feeling that springs up when you have twenty people vying for your Tinkerbell pillow case or sappy Precious Moments figurine, and I'm not sure how long I can take the pressure.

Then there's the whole 'things you maybe shouldn't Freecycle' aspect. I guess if you want to take someone's half-used makeup or deodorant that's your business, but really? And the skanky schoolgirl lingerie? Think this, but less fabric and more thongish. A woman replied "interested for my daughter", and I thought "so your daughter's a stripper? How sweet of you to be so supportive!" And the creepy manikin thing made out of diapers - the owner wanted assurance that the doll would be left whole, not broken down for diapers. Uh-huh, that's enforceable, and not at all weird. And someone setting up an apartment that was in 'urgent need' of a mop and bucket (yep, totally reasonable) a bread-maker (um, you know you could just...) and a deep fryer (wait, WHAT now?)

And don't even get me started on the spelling and grammar. Okay, get me started on the spelling and grammar. I know a lot of people are on their phones, so it's not fair to judge. I judge unfairly. I know a large portion of the population has trouble knowing where to put apostrophes, I've tried to make my piece with that. But I didn't know 'threw' instead of 'through' was a thing - as in 'please keep me in mind if first exchange falls threw'. Over and over and over again. One woman posted an offer, promised an item to someone, then changed her mind and wanted to trade the item for an 'excersize ball' of which she was in dire need. It's not actually allowed to ask for a trade, you're supposed to offer all items freely, and some discussion was spurred on this subject, which meant that the phrase 'excersize ball' was repeated many, many times. I finally messaged my friend the admin and said "I guess I'm not allowed to stipulate that my item will only go to someone who doesn't overly abuse the English language, huh?" She replied "No. But think of the spectacular drama that you would inspire - most of it incomprehensible."

I'm not a nice person. Unless you have twins who desperately require Groovy Girl dolls and Percy Jackson books by the week-end and you don't get paid until Monday. Then I've got your back.


Julie said...

i keep meaning to put up our basketball net on freecycle. how about i spell it "freeh bahskit baol knet" should get coms good hits.

Nicole said...

Okay, I'm still laughing about this: "There's this weird, playing-god feeling that comes into play when you have twenty people vying for your Tinkerbell pillow case or sappy Precious Moments figurine, and I'm not sure how long I can take the pressure."

And who sells sexytimes schoolgirl outfits? I mean, there's no way I'd sell mine!


Helen Abbott said...

OK Allison, I haven't commented in awhile, but this one made me guffaw. Awesome.