Jaybird is Birdmojo on Xbox Live and Jaybirdmojo on Playstation's network. He's been playing consoles since the Atari 2600 and it was Zork that taught him how to touch-type. If you've got a song for Wednesday, a commercial for Saturday, a recommendation for Tuesday, an essay for Monday, or, heck, just a handful a questions, fire off an email to AskJaybird-at-gmail.com

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31 Responses

  1. Avatar Maribou says:

    Mostly what Jaybird said.

    1) I haven’t been reading much this week and I want to read a lot. I also want to listen to podcasts a lot and watch TV a lot and sleep a lot and clean out the fridge a lot. We’ll see which lot wins.

    2) About 2-3 other things that are all not really my story to tell but which may involve a fair amount of sitting around in hospital rooms, running errands, etc. Because a friend is, among many other equally valid ways of being one, the person who shows up. Plus hospitals actually feel reassuring to me for reasons I won’t get into here, so that makes them a lot easier on me than on most people (also easier on me that sitting at home wishing I could help is!).Report

  2. Avatar Brandon Berg says:

    Why was the story embargoed?Report

    • Avatar Maribou says:

      I wasn’t sure how he was planning to tell it and as flimsy as our pseudonyms are, it somehow didn’t seem like a thing to talk about publicly online while it was actually happening.

      Random old-fashioned irrational paranoia, basically. “This is dumb but it’ll go away once it’s been a while, so can you hold off?”Report

  3. fillyjonk fillyjonk says:

    I’ve read that card-thieves make some small purchase first, that’s unlikely to arouse suspicion, to see if the card (or number) still works. Then they go to town.

    I’ve had my card number stolen a couple of times. At least once I’m pretty sure it was a gas-pump skimmer because there was a (later) news report of them being found on some gas pumps in my area about the time the number was stolen. The first time my card number got stolen was the worst – a purchase I tried to make got denied, and when I called the company (because I knew how much credit I still had on the card and it would have been more than enough) they told me the outfit (a music shop in freaking California) and to call them.

    Music shop was like “Can’t do anything, man, you’re on the hook for the money”

    Called the credit card company back and reported to them. They said they’d get the charges removed and send me a new card, and they did.

    Both other times the card company called me about “Hey, this is an unexpectedly large amount of money spent on this card, is this you” (Once, the guy called me in my office and said “Are you in Las Vegas?” and I said “I’m in my office in Oklahoma, so, no” and he kind of laughed and said “I thought so, I’ll deny these charges and issue you a new card – apparently the person tried to book a hotel room for a week on my card)

    They also used to call me about overseas purchases but haven’t recently. I don’t know if the rules on that have changed or if the time I sighed and told them, “If it’s a bookseller or a yarn shop in the UK, you can almost 100% bet it was me that made the purchase”

    Weekend plans this weekend are sort of minimal: my research student and I are going out to relocate the transects she will be resampling, and I have a meeting Sunday afternoon (which I thought, in my confusion and upset about my dad – who is doing better now – was last week). Other than that I plan to try to recover from the first week of classes. This was a long week.Report

    • Avatar Maribou says:

      “I’ve read that card-thieves make some small purchase first, that’s unlikely to arouse suspicion, to see if the card (or number) still works. Then they go to town.”

      Yeah, that’s what this guy did. It’s just that his version of going to town was literally to take a taxi (not even an uber!) across town to the dollar theater, go to a movie, and then eat at a very yummy non-expensive family restaurant (their biscuits are amazing).

      Hard not to feel sorry for instead of mad at such a criminal.


      I’m glad your dad is doing better now. First week of classes is always a wipeout too. Good luck with the recuperating.Report

      • Avatar Doctor Jay says:

        I am more than a little surprised to find that Black Bear Diner has spread to Denver. Surprised and pleased.

        You see, I have dined at the first Black Bear Diner in Shasta. Also in Redding and Yreka, and maybe in Ashland (or is it Medford?).

        Yes, we quite like them. Yes, the biscuits are good.Report

        • Avatar Maribou says:

          @doctor-jay No, not Denver, Co Springs. It’s been here as long as I can remember. *looks into it* probably about 10 years. figured it was one of those moderate sized chains but had thought more like 3-6* than the 20ish? 30ish locations they have now. Including 2 here in the Springs. How funny that they’re common where you are from 🙂

          * There are a lot of tiny family-based chains that have an outpost in Co Springs for some reason. Panino’s is my fave. Last I checked all their other locations were in Minnesota.Report

        • Avatar CJColucci says:

          I had no idea Black Bear Diner was a chain. I thought it was just a local diner you recognized.Report

    • Avatar dragonfrog says:

      Something like this happened to a prof of mine – he gave a waiter his card to pay for a restaurant meal in Tokyo, a moment later they were back asking him to take a phone call from the credit card company. Apparently he had just checked into a hotel in Singapore with the same card.Report

    • Avatar Marchmaine says:

      I’m amazed at how good the credit card companies are at catching fraud and protecting me, the unsuspecting customer.

      Every couple of years one of our Card numbers (not the card) is swiped… a few charges later and the Card company sends a text… never paid a dime for the fraudulent charges. Eventually I canceled a CapitalOne card because they seemed to get stolen more than seemed reasonable… plus they annoyed me by declaring war on Quicken, and the reality is that I need my accounting software to work more than I needed a dime-a-dozen credit card to work.

      So they missed out on all my fabulous Ostrich wear purchases.

      Not withstanding my new CapOne replacement card, I also tend to stick with a company… so I sometimes wonder if they a) have more data on my spending patterns, or b) bump me up the priority monitoring queue for lifetime spend, or c) bump me up the queue for running a lot of expenses through the card to consolidate payments on a monthly basis (like Utilities, Internet, and other recurring bills).

      Or maybe none of the above and I just desperately want cold algorithmic logic to pretend it has feelings for me.Report

      • fillyjonk fillyjonk says:

        I don’t ever charge all that much on mine, and I’m one of those freaks who pays it off in full every month (I use the cards as mainly a convenience so I don’t need to carry cash and so I can order stuff online). I have two cards from different credit unions (one is a low-limit card I use for gas pumps and online purchases, on that grounds that those both seem to be common ways of getting the number swiped). I also have a Target MasterCard, which is a chip and pin card (all my cards are chip cards, that is the only one that asked me to assign a PIN to it), That one came after the big Target breach (which I missed by virtue of being busy and not having shopped there during the breach period). I figured Target would be more paranoid about card security after that.

        I guess I get 5% off at Target when I use it there but other than that I feel like card hopping for perks is more effort than I care to go to. I rarely fly so I don’t need frequent-flyer miles, that sort of thing.Report

      • Avatar Damon says:

        I had a foreign yearly subscrtipion charged out of switzerland for 10 years…every year the charge was hung up and I had to call or get called to authorize it…you’d think they’d learn.Report

        • Avatar Marchmaine says:

          You’d think… I don’t work FinServe anymore for my software, but trust me, they’re working on it… I get briefed on all the “success” stories.Report

          • Avatar Damon says:

            I’ve noticed that it HAS gotten better…just not fixed I guess. Anyway..I stopped that sub a number of years ago…Now I just worry about not having a chip and pin card when in foreign lands.Report

  4. Avatar dragonfrog says:

    I’ve been feeling kind of antsy – haven’t really left the house much since Monday; the air quality index has been in the “maybe try not breathing” range all week It rained overnight, and just like that it’s clear and fresh and expected to remain so on the weekend.. So I will do some errands, mostly just so I can get on my bike and feel my body moving.

    The rest of the family is away this week, so I’ve done various quiet-house things so far – mostly reading for uninterrupted hours at a stretch.

    A friend of mine did some exploring of new bike trail recently and discovered that you can now ride to the next town to the northeast entirely on trails and a couple of stretches of quiet back roads, about a four hour round trip plus breaks. So I might do that this weekend.Report

    • Avatar dragonfrog says:

      It seems I do a big excursion like this every year or so, and am reminded that I’m a year or so more arthritic than last time I did this.

      It was a great ride, a lot of fun, but my knees are angry with me today.Report

  5. Avatar atomickristin says:

    What am I doing this weekend?

    Honestly, you’ve made minor credit card fraud and a day out on the town sound mighty appealing…Report

  6. Are you sure that the “thief” realized it wasn’t their card? Especially in light of what Maribou said about it not being an uber but a taxi? I can imagine that occasionally two cards might look alike and someone could just accidentally pick up another’s card without really thinking about it.Report

    • Avatar Maribou says:

      @gabriel-conroy Oh yeah, we’re 99 percent sure. Jay didn’t give every little detail (and I’d rather he didn’t) but we didn’t notice the loss right away, so – in brief the whole first day there were only testing patterns, the next day there were testing patterns and then in the space of a very short time, a bunch of “splurges” of gradually increasing size.

      I expect it’s possible if we’d ignored it another day, we’d see some major purchases. But then again, maybe not!Report

  7. Avatar LeeEsq says:

    The few times I’ve been victims of credit card theft it was because somebody figured out my numbers without physically taking the card. I suppose this is better than actual theft. My credit card company was able to figure out something was wrong because they used it to purchase things that I would never have purchased like power tools.Report

    • Avatar Maribou says:

      @leeesq The most bizarre fraud I’ve ever seen was the time I went to pay for my tattoo and the card got declined because someone had made a $180,000 charge to our account. (I had to sit on the floor when I heard the number.)

      Needless to say, we didn’t have anything like a $180,000 limit on our credit card. It took a little while on the phone to resolve but only because the lady on the other end had never seen anything like that before either. Eventually it got escalated and went away – took about maybe 20 mins on the phone, nothing more – and then we never heard much about it again. They didn’t even send us a new card that time because they were able to determine the hack hadn’t even used our account numbers.

      I did some research, and it turns out credit card companies occasionally get attacked in a concerted way by people who grab a lot of money on a bunch of accounts at once like that, and then the money all goes to some untraceable account and the people are never heard from again.Report

      • Avatar Jaybird says:

        “Did you spend $180,000 at the Taco Shack?”

        “Um… no?”Report

      • fillyjonk fillyjonk says:

        How the heck does a company even permit a charge like that? If I go $1 over on my low-limit card that I use for gas, it gets denied right there. Or are the rest of y’all just special and the banks know I’m a broke (and cheap) college prof?Report

        • Avatar Jaybird says:

          You know what? That’s a great question. I mean, we paid less than that for our house.

          Though I suppose the more relevant stat is that our credit limit is *LESS* than $180,000 so you’d think that the credit card company would have known to deny it.

          (It’s that number that tells me that it wasn’t anybody at the shop. I mean, if they added a $12 tip instead of a $2 one and Maribou asked me “did you spend $22 at the Taco Shop?”, even if I thought I remembered only spending $12, I’d have probably said “that sounds like me… maybe I bought my co-worker lunch?” and that’s a grift they could have run with for years.)Report

          • Avatar Maribou says:

            @jaybird @fillyjonk I explained this to Jay at the time — but no one permitted anything.

            Hackers hit the system at a higher level than CC numbers, changed a bunch of small purchases to giant purchases (only on one side), siphoned off the money, and got the hell out burning their bridges behind them.

            I would normally have been shocked to learn about something like this, but during that experience I did some research and credit card companies literally *expect* to lose literally billions of dollars a year to theft/fraud. Like their “acceptable loss, we’re doing fine, no need to change how things work” optimal number is in the billions.

            It’s a whole ecosystem.Report

  8. Avatar J_A says:

    As I frequently brag about, I travel a lot for work, so I ring charges in many places. I’ve always been curious about the algorithm that my bank (a too big to fall one) uses to assume it’s me versus some fraudulent charge. They’ve called me once to check (Rio) and blocked my card preemptly once (UK) because apparently I hadn’t answered their call. If I ever meet @veronica in person, I’ll pester her until she explains it to me.

    They do call when I make significantly large purchases. Later, I’m getting texts instead of calls. I guess it saves on the caller’s salaries. Damn, there’s another job lost to automation.Report