Business Tip of the Week- Being negative ain't so bad ya'll

It's been a rough time in Etsyville™ lately. We're all feeling a bit winded I think. And for those of you fighting the good fight on issues you care deeply about, or for those who wonder why they bother- this one's for you.

Being negative ain't all that bad ya'll. Do people call protestors 'negative nancys' or those who speak up against corruption 'whiners'? Nope. Well they may, but they don't get much press. Maybe in some weird fringe newsletters but not in the big publications.

But I digress.

Being critical is the basis for all scientific thought. Having worked in research for many years I can tell you that I never once heard a co-worker say, 'I love the lab.' In fact, most of us hated the lab. It was big, cold, the acoustics were awful and it regularly smelled like burnt agar and rat guts. So why did we go there everyday? We loved our work. We loved that we were discovering new things which one day, maybe just one day would save some bastard we didn't even know. Yes, even you. But we were still "negative" and constantly complained about our facility, were critical about our data, and showed up every day and night trying to make things better.

You had the guy who clipped his toenails in the lunchroom sink. You had the other guy who would bleach his glassware and get it all over the counter, which you'd always lean up against when you coincidentally weren't wearing your lab coat. Then there was that visiting scientist who would tell you how cluttered the lab was and how her home lab back in East Bumblefuck was so much better. And my favorite, the safety techs who wouldn't get that you had to put radioactive tape on your pens just so people would stop stealing them. They didn't see the humor or the necessity of your actions.

Etsy is like that too. To many of us, this place is just a lab. It's a place where we get to do our work. But we don't love it. It has things like bleach everywhere (treasuries on your profile). It has the guy who leaves the toenails in the sink (resellers) and it has the people who always say it's better somewhere else (AF promos). We even have the safety techs who don't get humor or necessity (the ones who report my threads so they get moved to Etc). We stay though because we love our work and this is a place to get it in front of people. Just like we stayed at the lab with its radiation, rat guts and arrogant researchers- it was where the funding and space was to do our work. 

And we liked the people we worked with. Why? Because they helped us improve. They helped us ask the the guy who clipped his toenails in the sink to kindly refrain rather than puking all over him in a show of defiance. The Etsy community is like that. I have had many kind souls talk me down from puking all over admin's desks to relieve frustration. You know who you are and I thank you. 

Bottom line is give the negative, critical people a break. And if you are one, don't beat yourself up. One can't exist without the other. If everyone were positive all the time you'd end up in a giant pool of positive goo. I imagine it to be like that stuff the bodies were submerged in during 'The Matrix'. And if everyone were negative well, it would be a universe full of Simon Cowells. And he's a multi millionaire who dates a string of gorgeous women, and has his every whim catered to. Who wants a life like that?

So good luck to all of you who are positive. In some ways I envy you because I'm sure you have a lot less stress. You see the cup as half full whereas I see that someone's just slipped the date rape drug into your drink. We all must exist together though and maybe one day one of us negative nancys will save your life. Or at least give you some advice and a supportive ear when your shop gets unexpectedly shut down. It's just business though, right?

Thread on Etsy forum

Business Tip of the Week- Sourcing ethical materials

Materials. From the french word, 'merde'. The Latin 'mater'. The piglatin 'aterialsmay'.

They are what we use to make our crap. We grow our beads and mold our yarn to create the most lovely little things that hopefully others will find cool enough to pay us for. Like a poet uses words or a prostitute uses a condom, we use clay and fabric.

So it is only natural to want to insure our materials are of the greatest quality and sourced as humanely as possible. After all people who buy handmade want ethically created items otherwise they could just go buy stuff at Target.

Then again no material is sourced without an impact. Even if you grow your own soap, it is still sucking up valuable molecules from the environment. You think yarn comes out of a box? No! A seed is planted and baby yarns are harvested to get the finest and softest skeins. We are killing baby yarns to make the hats that the buyers want.

Remember, matter can neither be created nor destroyed. So you really aren't destroying anything regardless of what you use. Unless you are god, the molecules you rearrange in the creation of your own items will continue to be rearranged long after your demise.

So go ahead and kill the baby yarns, slay the soap seedlings, fish for the gold... cause one day it will go back into the earth and be fertilizer to grow the vegetables you'll have on your table. And without vegetables there's not enough fiber in your diet which can cause you to get really backed up. So thank the person who rapes the beads, harvests baby skeins, and strip mines the soap. Without them you'd be full of shit.

Then again some humans in fact emit methane which is a cause of global warming. So the bottom line is, you are the problem. Kill yourself and save the planet. It may not help your business, but stop being so selfish you twit.

Etsy forum thread

I want to heckle Wayne Rooney like Stephen Hawkins :)

In the 'Did you ever wonder' file...

Who invented the term 'shit load'?  And what is it exactly?

I found myself wondering about this today.  I said, 'I have a shit load of work to do.'

And really, why does a shit load mean a lot?  Was it named after someone's particularly large shits?  Like is it descended from viking times when some large warrior named Thorgrim had a particularly humongous excrement and his clan said, 'What a huge load! Oh my goodness Thorgrim leaves extremely large loads of shit in the latrine! Don't go to the bog after him!'

And over the years, as it happens, rather than referring to it as 'Thorgrim's large load of shit' when describing something massive, it was shortened to 'shit load.'

Because obviously most people's shits aren't anything to really worry about I would've thought.  If your boss said, 'you've got a shit load of work before you go on vacation' and then dumped a regular sized turd in your file, you'd think, 'oh, that's not so bad. At least it's not an elephant bollocks load.  That would've been troubling.'

Awesome art on Etsy!

In the 'What's crossed my mind today' file...

So I've been thinking.

I am starting to become convinced that some men only have children to prove they have had sex with someone else.  Probably a woman if I'm being honest.

But seriously folks, do you ever walk down the street and see a woman with a child and say, 'God in heaven who slept with her?  She's got a face like a bag of mashed up twats!'

If you do say that, you're probably a woman as men don't think like that.  You know the old joke- 'What's the fat bit around the vagina called? A woman.'  We're sort of mobile vaginas to them.

Mobile vaginas.   Good band name.