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December 29, 2010

Gift Card Arbitrage


OK, so you got a gift card or three for stores you'd never frequent no matter what.

Guess what?

You can sell them for real cash money.

Stephanie Clifford's December 10, 2010 New York Times story related how gift card exchange and management sites have arisen to ease your pain.

She wrote, "Plastic Jungle is the biggest of the sites. It buys unwanted gift cards, including electronic gift cards, paying a discount depending on how popular the issuers are. It currently pays $92 for a $100 gift card from Target, for instance, but $70 for a $100 card from Baja Fresh."

"It sells gift cards, too, also at a discount, so that a $100 Target card can be bought for $97. (Its prices fluctuate throughout the year.)"

"Unlike sites like Craigslist that offer gift cards for sale, Plastic Jungle validates 'every card received by us before we pay out, then guarantee that it will work as promised,' he [Bruce Bower, Plastic Jungle CEO] said. When someone buys a card at its site, Plastic Jungle mails it to the purchaser, or sends the buyer an online code, and it can be used immediately. It deals only with cards that cost $25 and up."

"There are several competitors with similar models, including GiftCardRescue.com, Cardpool.com and MonsterGiftCard.com, but their inventories were smaller; Plastic Jungle recently had about 670 cards for sale, and the others had about 100 or fewer. There are also pure exchange sites, like TheGiftCardTrader.com, where consumers can swap cards between each other."


"In the last year, Plastic Jungle has grown quickly, selling about $10 million worth of gift cards, Mr. Bower said. That is about five times the business it did a year ago."

December 29, 2010 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Military Blouson


By Aloha Rag.


100% cotton.


Made in Japan.


Model is 5'11" and is wearing size x-small.



December 29, 2010 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

ToneCheck — "Emotional spell-check"



Robotic impulse control.


Free, the way we like it.

[via Jascha Hoffman's item in the December 19, 2010 New York Times magazine. He wrote, "ToneCheck, an e-mail-outbox filter that works as a sort of emotional spell-check, offers typists a chance to reconsider their words before hitting 'send.' If the content of a message exceeds a preset threshold for negative emotions like anger or sadness, the e-mailer is confronted with a warning and a chance to revise. Drawing on the opinions of thousands of people who have been paid to evaluate the emotional charge of various phrases, the software can also detect unseemly levels of positive emotions like affection or elation.]

December 29, 2010 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

What's inside?


Answer here this time tomorrow.

December 29, 2010 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (8) | TrackBack

"Tron: Legacy" — The Shoe: Episode 2 — Take the Choo train


Above, the sequel to the December 20, 2010 Episode 1: Jimmy Choo snake and mesh stilettos, $1,095.

[via Horacio Silva and the New York Times

December 29, 2010 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Leonardo da Vinci Eye Chart


"A mirror image version of the traditional eye chart you'll find in the optometrist's office."

11" x 17" on glossy 12 point paper.


December 29, 2010 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

matte is the new black


Forget shiny shiny liquid metal mirror finishes on cars: that's ovah.

Now comes matte black as an option on high-end cars like the Mercedes-Benz SL550 Night Edition with matte-finish (above) and the matte-finish Aston Martin V12 Vantage (below).


There's plenty of matte room at the bottom, however: "The coming 2012 Ford Focus (below) was given the matte treatment for the Ford display at the L.A. auto show," according to a December 27, 2010 USA Today story.


Forget the polishing cloth: now you'll want sandpaper and steel wool for touch-ups.


December 29, 2010 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Hottest Watch Ever? "Convergence gone mad"


Wrote Shea Connolly on Retro Thing, "I picked up this unique watch/lighter at a garage sale as a teen in the late 80s for $2 (price tag remains on box). I've never seen another one like it. Always thought it was an interesting combination. I have a small collection of vintage novelty watches, and this is my favorite."

Once again I say to Paul Biba: stand down.

[via Richard Kashdan]

December 29, 2010 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

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