Screwed in France!

March 10, 2008

Argh! I’ve been screwed in France of all places.

I’m good at security. I shred all documents that have anything on them. I review my statements. I only have 2 credit cards. I use PayPal online whenever possible. I don’t do fly by night transactions and whenever possible I use Discover Card. But when they don’t take discover I use my debit card.

However, I am not very good at checking my accounts. I will look once during the month and then go over my actual statements at the end of the month. But today I happened to check and see if a deposit at an ATM had been posted, and I see strange POS transactions pending on my debit card. A quick call to Kelli and she had no idea either. All today:
MES L3 ADUP $17.04
MARIOAUD $194.39
MARIONAUD $37.16
France Telecom $23.40
Rel. CEDRE $41.15
MAXIMS $10.90
PROD REG FRANCE $165.83
RELAIS H $54.66
RELAIS H $35.78
RELAIS H $38.39
. . .
and so on. I’m not in France. I have an ATT phone. I don’t know what that other crap is!

I called my bank and asked them what was going on . The point of sale for all that was FRANCE. Again, I’m not in France. They canceled my card immediately. But, here is what’s strange, even though they are “pending” and I still have my money – they have it frozen and are obligated to release it! It’s my money!!! Screw that. I have to wait and “contest” the charges once they actual post and they take my damn money. The worst part is the bastard was spending Euros and I have to suffer not only a poor exchange rate, but cover the conversaion charges. DEATH. The lady on the phone said it should not be an issue contesting this and I had her put a note in saying I caught it INSTANTLY, even as charges were being made.

The last charge on that card was on a government website. Before that it goes way back, so who knows.

On a happier note I got tickets to Phantom of the Opera today (on a different card).

Also, as a point of clarification: my no fast food pledge does not mean “eat healthy,” just no fast good. Arby’s, BK, McDonalds and the like.

Too irritated to really post anything else. Stupid Frenchmen.

- Jesse

Categories: General.

Gone Campin’

March 3, 2008

February is over! Thank the gods. I am giving up something each month this year just for the hell of it. I went with no pop in January and no alcohol in February (which I promptly reintroduced to my system on the 1st). March is no fast food month.

Fisrt flower of springOver last weekend Kaldun and I grabbed the dog, filled the car, and headed to Okmulgee State Park which is only an hour and a half south of Tulsa. The three of us (Bacchus was there, Igasa is a bit too wild) enjoyed a couple of 70+ degree days and 55 degree nights. Kevin and his son Noah met us down there on Saturday afternoon to head to the shooting range, cook on a camp fire, and drown a few worms.

Kevin and I each grabbed portions of our arsenals to teach the kids firearm safety/show off how cool the dads’ are to theKaldin shooting a .22 wee-ones (lest they forget). We brought a pair of AK-47s, a 12 gauge, a .40 S&W and a .22 long rifle with enough ammo to qualify as real Senator Inhofe electing Oklahomans. I have been drilling Kaldun on the basics for some time (never point a toy gun at people, always point at what your shooting at, trigger on the finer only if you intend to fire, you kill it – get your knife because you’re eating it) so it went pretty smoothly. after a brief rundown of the standard rules (safety on, don’t touch unless your firing, firing line reminders, never go down range, check your and others ears before firing etc.) one kid got to take the empty rifle and show us he listened. He then got one round and if he fired it following all the rules he got another… until we were comfortable enough to let them shoot series of rounds at a time.

And they did well. Kaldun had to go sit in the car once for touching the gun when he wasn’t firing (literally touching, but this was not the time ot be lenient with the rules) and they both would just set the gun on the ground when they were out of bullets… but otherwise they did very well. Ok, Noah did start to check down the barrel when he was out of ammo but his dad was all over that situation.

Kaldun was a relative ace with the 22. He had never shot even a BB gun before and he averaged 4/10 shooting clays at ~40 yards. He enjoyed shooting the .40 but the gun itself was a bit heavy and since he was never allowed more than 1 in the chamber it wasn’t as much fun (laying down you can’t drop a rifle and accidentally shoot someone, with a pistol you could). He even got to squeeze off a single round from the AK with significant help. When he saw me shooting trap he wanted to try the 12 gauge but I convinced him that might not be a good idea and they ran off to have a mud fight well behind the scenes.

Kaldun the fishermenWe drown some worms (no fish), burned some logs, and offed a few beers (it was March 1st, not February any longer!) before climbing into the sack on a clear and Chilly night. Kaldun was fine the whole time (but-for a little excessive fire playing ::insert my moms snicker here ::) and Bacchus was a model camping dog catching 2 Racoons trying to sneak into our camp, a deer off in the distance, and a park ranger coming for fees (each greeted with a low growl alerting me to their presence, not a chomp). Otherwise I think we saw MAYBE a dozen other people all weekend. Good times had by all.

The rest of the images for the camping trip can be sen here.

- Jesse

Categories: General.