Guest Expressed: “5 Ridiculous Washing Machine Fails”

Today Alex Bell visits us to tell some harrowing tales of washing machine fails. Enter Alex:

Those that own a washing machine, as most of us do, will more than likely have come across difficulties at some point. This may be an overflowing number of suds, a phone accidently locked inside or a washing machine which seems to operate with a mind of its own.

Of course, not all mistakes are as common and for some people the shortcomings of their washing machines are nothing short of epic fails. Here are five examples:

1. Bricking It

Ever imagined what it would be like to watch a washing machine self-destruct? It appears some wish to find the answer to this more than others. One individual decided to wash not clothes, but a brick! The end result being a washing machine set to self-destruct mode. Such a demonstration showcased the device to hold a mind of its own, passersby claimed the washing machine moved several feet prior to taking off.

2. Washing Machine Fail – Young, Dumb and Living Off Mum

Showcased in BBC Three’s documentary ‘Young, Dumb and Living off Mum’, the show followed a series of teenagers as they tried to conquer life’s daily tasks in a bid to fend for themselves. As a new task arose, the teenagers were showcased placing not only clothes in the washing machine but placemats. They then went on to put washing up liquid as opposed to washing powder in the drum of the machine. The entire episode of course ended in chaos; both the participants and the kitchen were completely covered in suds.

3. Junior Wash

Another epic fail to take in to consideration is the moment a foolish couple decided to teach their son a lesson by putting him inside a washing machine. Not only was this incredibly irresponsible but it was also highly dangerous. Despite the fact a sign on the wall of the laundrette read ‘junior wash’; we can’t imagine it was meant to be taken quite so literally – although perhaps the parents would disagree!

4. Soggy Moggy

A women’s cat most definitely used up one of its nine after being subjected to a 1 hour and 45 minute cycle. The tabby that lived to tell the tale went through quite an ordeal and was only spotted when her owner heard unusual noises coming from inside the glass-fronted machine. Once the scared animal was retrieved, the owner claimed she had in fact shrunk to half her size. The feline was immediately rushed to the local vets where she was treated for shock. She is now said to be making a full recovery.

5. Overflowing

Overflowing suds may look funny on the TV; this isn’t however quite the case when it happens to you. One woman found out the hard way when she accidently used regular laundry detergent as appose to HE detergent in her brand new high efficiency washer. The end result, a kitchen full of unwanted suds! The only upside to this is the fact her kitchen floor will remain spotless for the foreseeable future.

This is a guest post by Alex Bell who thoroughly enjoys making fun of household appliances when not blogging. He spends the rest of his free time trawling through Youtube for funny videos.

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Flash Fiction: “High stakes”

This post is another entry into the Flash Fiction contest at DudeWrite. Last entry was a success, so why not try again? The rules are the same as last time, but with a different prompt, so:

1) The post should be under 500 words

2) The post should start with: “Never one to turn down a dare…”

Let’s go!

Never one to turn down a dare, Sam was already on his fourth brownie of the evening. “Good progress so far,” he thought.

Earlier today he’d taken all the necessary steps to prepare a high quality batch. He scored a whole ounce of the “most bestest” weed from his grammatically challenged buddy Jon. He’d gone to the supermarket and brought home an expensive brownie mix along with the purest sunflower oil he could find. He dug around the kitchen drawers and found a dust-covered frying pan of just the right size.

A great recipe was a mere Google search away – there was no shortage of advice on the Internet. Sam had settled on an article entitled “How to make the perfect weed brownies”, because perfection was obviously very important in this matter. Several hours later Sam had sixteen delicious-looking brownies ready for consumption.

The first three brownies went down fast and without any noticeable effects. Now, in the middle of his fourth, Sam had suddenly gotten an epiphany. “Everything that happens is, like, already in the past!” Sam screamed out loud at nobody in particular, while bolting upwards from his chair. Sam was excited. He chewed through the fifth brownie while considering the implications of his ground-breaking discovery.

He had seven more brownies to go if he were to show David up. As he started on his sixth brownie Sam decided this was going to be a piece of cake. Or…a piece of brownie! Sam burst out laughing. Piece of brownie! Oh man, that was priceless! Hahahaa! Sam was sure that the neighbours could hear his uncontrollable laughter, but he just couldn’t help himself – it was the funniest thing ever.

Several minutes later Sam found himself on the floor of the kitchen, still clutching his stomach. He had calmed down, but was now starving and feeling low on sugar. He needed something sweet right away. As he pulled himself up to a semi-standing position his eyes fell on the plate of six leftover brownies. They looked so good. Sam launched himself at the brownies, devouring two of them in one go and biting viciously into a third one…

…a powerful wave of paranoia hit Sam without any warning. What if David wanted him dead? That way he’d have the flat all to himself! He tricked him into this, didn’t he? Sam couldn’t let that happen. He needed to get to a hospital. Pronto!

***

When David came home he found Sam unconscious on the kitchen floor. It took David only seconds to take in the scene: the plate of brownies, the messy kitchen…and a small transparent bag on the kitchen counter. David smiled. He walked over to Sam and gave him two quick slaps across the face. Sam opened his eyes and sat up abruptly, staring at David with a puzzled expression.

“Dude, I think you may have forgotten something?” said David, holding the unopened bag of weed in front of Sam’s face.

My “Unresponsive Scammer” Collection

Hi all,

I am currently stranded without any money in the country of Lisompo, which you may have heard of, but definitely haven’t. Also, I’m afraid I’m dying of old age, which really sucks when you’re only 30.

If you don’t act immediately to transfer a million dollars out of my account into yours, all is lost! Because that’s how banks work!

Please send me your bank information details and I’ll tell you how you can send me money that you’ll never see again.

Yours,
Daniel

So…yeah…today’s post is about scammers again. Ever since the wildly successful “My correspondence with a scammer” post, I have been writing back to scammers in the hope that they’d bite. Unfortunately, none of them have displayed the same combination of cluelessness and dedication as Linda Hicks, so I haven’t gotten any real conversations going yet. I promise to keep trying!

Nevertheless, I wanted to share with you a few of my responses to scammers, because I find them quite amusing (if I do say so myself, which I just did). Maybe some of you will find inspiration in these and start your own conversations with scammers? Maybe nothing at all will happen? The possibilities are virtually endless!

This may seem like a bit of a lazy post strategy. That’s because it totally is! I don’t want to use the work excuse again, but we do have another project “sprint” at work that started 10 days ago and will continue for another week. So I decided that instead of falling off the radar completely this time, I’ll share my inbox with you.

As with the Linda Hicks post I censor all website links, but leave the rest of the email content untouched. Enjoy:

Scammer 1 – “Let’s Succeed Together”:

Hi,

My name is Angie Scott and I would really love to tell you how nest-expressed.com can rank even better in Google.

I’m a SEO expert working at SEO Sheriff and while doing a research for some of my partners I found your email address and decided to contact you at once.

If you are interested I will be happy to send the additional information and all the details needed to make it happen.

Thanks,
Angie

My response 1:

Hi Angie,

How are you? Hope you are as well as a whale under a spell (it’s a saying we have in Iceland)!

Thank you very much for contacting me! I would certainly be interested in receiving details, information, and other paraphernalia from you pertaining to the offer.

By the way, I love the subject of your email – “let’s succeed together”. That’s so well put! I am a fan of succeeding and I absolutely love togetherness too. Combining those two is just like dipping a cookie in chocolate milk! Have you tried that? Delicious!

Anyways, hope to hear from you,

Daniel

PS: Pardon my ignorance, but what does SEO mean? My guess is Site Enhancement Organisation?

Scammer 2 – “Advertising”:

Good day,

My name is Ben and I run a website [name] I really like the quality of articles you publish and I think that the target audience on your site would even benefit if you were to link to mine in your posts.

So, I have a proposal. I want to sponsor your regular posts. You simply continue writing articles – as you normally do, they are very good! And in the end of your article – state: “This article was written in association with [name], educational resource about the most famous scientists. Save on Textbooks online.”

You can change the text of the “bio” if you would like to edit something.

If it is possible to upload a small website logo by the bio – that would also be great. It’s like sponsored posts, but you do not have to write anything extraordinary – just your regular updates, which I like very much!

Kindly, write me back if you are interested – how many sponsored posts you would accept from me and what would be the price. If you have expected publication dates – let me know too.

Thank you very much for running such a great website!

Ben Anderson

My response 2:

Good day, or, as they say where I come from, “Good day”!

First of all, congratulations on running a site that is dedicated to scientists and their famousity – you’re saving lives, I’m sure!

Secondly, I fully agree that my target audience would benefit from learning about scientists that are famous! We all know that juvenile humour and science go together like spare ribs and watermelon!

I’d like to suggest a bio, more along the lines of:

“Love sciency stuff? Love websites that begin with “f”? Then you’ll love [name]! Head on over and get your science on!”

What do you think?

May I ask, if I may, which one of my articles was your favourite? The one with the cat going on hunger strike? The one with a list of things you shouldn’t eat together with marshmallows? Or a third one? I’m just curious, so that I know what quality content to keep delivering!

Until the next point in the space-time continuum,
Daniel

Scammer 3 – “Hello Dear”:

Hello Dear,

My name is Miss Aminata Bangali, resident in Ghana, Africa: The main reason I have decided to contact you today is to seek your assistance to help me transfer my INHERITED MONEY DEPOSITED IN A SECURITY AND FINANCE COMPANY in MADRID SPAIN to your country for investment.

I am the next of kin to the DEPOSIT, but because I lack experience and the situation with me here as a refugee, I decided to contact you to stand as my Trustee and Representative to release the money from the company and transfer it to your country..If you are interested, please let me know and I will give you the full details..

Thank You,
Miss Aminata Bangali.

My response 3:

Dear Aminata,

Thank you for contacting me, resident of Europe, Earth!

The wise teachings of the Seven High Lords of Gratitude tell me that all good deeds must be performed when requested. Therefore, I hesitate not at all when assistance of mine you ask.

Please relate the details of this to me in full and I shall carry your burden on my broad shoulders like Hercules, or at least like “The Rock”.

May you be blessed by the All-Seeing Star of the Cossacks in the sky,
Daniel

Guest Expressed: “Ridiculously Expensive Pencils”

Today Angela Stone takes us on a journey through the majestic land of pencils. You never knew how much you needed an expensive pencil until this article! Enter Angela:

There is expensive, there is ridiculously expensive, and then there is just ridiculous. Take, for example, Ashrita Furman’s 76 foot long, 21,500 lb, $20,000 pencil housed at the City Museum of St. Louis. With all due respect to the Gateway City, the pencil itself is a mockery of all things graphite. It is too big, too unwieldy, and for the connoisseur of pencil artistry, a deliberately ridiculous example of excess.

Pencils are an instrument of the soul, and should be treated with the respect they deserve. From Thomas Edison to John Steinbeck, they have been used to shape and capture the human existence. Nearly every American has grown up feeling first the sturdy grasp of thick learning pencils and later the steady lines of the standard yellow #2. They are a right of childhood, a marker as we make our way to adulthood.

Yet little do most of us know that these simple bastions of youth have been secretly conditioning us to accept failure. Indeed, the days of the .08-cent pencil may have delighted our greedy parents, but that time is past. Today, the world has grown to offer us choice – choice that forces us to recognize both the inadequacy of the cheap pencil, and to learn appreciation for the joys of a proper, high-class writing instrument.

With all their many shapes and sizes, it is easy to see how many could confuse lazy simplicity with true artistry. Luckily, luxury brands like Louis Vuitton and Hermes have taken up the challenge of providing good, quality pencils like the Hermes Arlequin H Pencil. Bound in leather, and with a price tag of only $85, the Arlequin H is not only an affordable first step for many pencil buyers, but a favorite for children.

Meanwhile, Louis Vuitton offers even more for those pencil buyers looking for a decent pencil at a still modest price. For $255, the Golden Agenda Pencil features a thin frame and a refined golden brass finish. You will have to hurry to a store though, as of right now, the deal is just too good to be true, and the store is sold out online.

Reaching into quality pencils, we begin to find true majesty in Yard O Led’s Sceptre Amethyst Pencil-Paneled Barley Finish and Perfecta Pencil with a Victorian finish. With elegant lines and a delicacy made for the angels, at $475 and $425 respectively, these feather-light pencils may just make your hands shake under the weight of their beauty.

It is true, the world is full of magnificent pencils, and yet none can hold a flame to the greatest ever created. A limited edition produced by the Graf von Faber-Castell Collection in 2008, the Perfect Pencil was made of 240-year-old olive wood and 18c-white gold. Coming complete with an end piece to protect the tip, an extender with built in eraser and sharpener, three quality diamonds, and a price tag of $12,800; money truly is everything. Sadly, with only 99 of these majestic pencils ever created, most will have to settle for the non-limited editions that cost a meager $250.

Some will call these pencils ridiculously expensive; I choose to call them a necessity. After all, when a man cannot afford to buy a $450 dollar pencil, there can be only one reason; frivolity. He has spent his money on things that do not matter, and therefore should not be pitied. Food, groceries? What good are they without a pencil to write the picture of the soul?

Angela Stone wrote this article on behalf of Promotional Pencils, where you can create your own custom pencils (for a lot less than what these pencils are going for).

Faint memories

If you’re familiar with my “memory lane” series then you know they’re usually about hilariously embarrassing stuff happening to me. Well, this one is different, for once.

OK, just kidding. It’s about hilariously embarrassing stuff happening to me. Rejoice, you heartless crowd that laughs at my pain!

I draw my inspiration from fellow blogger Ria, who had written about her near-fainting experience.

Because I have no shame whatsoever, I not only steal her topic, I also “one-up” her with my story. Unlike Ria’s half-hearted almost-faint, I actually managed to faint in a spectacularly humiliating way. Here goes…

In case any of you need an illustration for “goes”

Once again, this was during my Copenhagen Business School years. Along with my studies I was working as a freelance journalist for the university newspaper’s English section – CBS Cornet. I wrote about diverse topics like the university’s internationalisation efforts, international students and the different international programs CBS offered.

One winter day I was biking to the editor-in-chief’s office to discuss an article I was working on. The day was rather cold and I was wearing a hat, scarf, coat and gloves – pretty standard issue equipment for cold winter days. Upon walking inside I felt a bit overheated, due to the temperature contrast between the outside world (winter) and the inside (a lot less winter).

I made my way to the editor’s office. We launched into a discussion about sources and angles for my article (the angle was probably “internationalisation”). After a minute of conversation I started feeling…not-quite-right. My heart was racing and my head was spinning, and I wasn’t even a lead singer of a rock band singing about falling in love.

“Oh baby, you make me feel like I’m about to faint real bad!”

I tried to brave through the conversation, because paying attention to clear signals your body is sending to you is overrated. At some stage Bjørn (our editor) stopped abruptly, looked at me and said: “OK, Daniel, I just want to let you know that you’re as pale as a bed sheet and you’re sweating like crazy”.

Now, you know you’re in denial of your symptoms when other people start pointing out things you should be very capable of noticing on your own. If I were smart I’d have replied with: “Correct, Bjørn. All signs indicate that my physical condition is deteriorating at an alarming rate. Urgent measures are required to rectify the situation”. Interestingly, that’s also what I would have said if I were a robot.

As it happens, my actual reply was more along the lines of: “Guess I better lay off drugs. Hehe.”

Bjørn chimed in with some similarly offhand comment a la: “Yeah, cocaine will do that to ya”.

Drug abuse is such a light-hearted topic

Having poked fun at my pre-faint symptoms we continued our conversation…for about thirty seconds more. It was at this stage that I realised that Bjørn had been replaced by a blurry blob shape and that his indistinguishable words were coming at me from a tunnel hundreds of metres away.

I wiped a copious amount of sweat from my forehead and told the Bjørn-shaped blob that I’d like to go to the restroom to splash some cold water on my face. The blob let out some noises that sounded like approval. Encouraged by the blob’s supportive tone I proceeded towards the door in a determined, zig-zagging fashion.

I made it as far as the door. The last thing my conscious mind registered was a close-up image of my hand reaching out for the door handle. Then the door slowly slipped out of my field of vision as I fainted and fell backwards onto the floor.

Because I have never fainted before I was quite confused as to what had happened. I remember being semi-conscious, yet unable to open my eyes and feeling like I was lying under a truck filled with lead. I recall actually thinking I was dead and being upset at the unfairness of having died at such a young age.

Why me, oh misleadingly adorable harbinger of death, WHY ME?!

When I came to I was still on the floor. Bjørn was sitting behind me and lifting the top part of my body upwards. I vaguely remember him telling me about his healing experience as the medicine man in Australia, but in all honesty this could’ve very well been a figment of my after-faint mind. He gave me some water and sat me down on a chair to prevent me from attacking the floor of his office with my body for a second time.

In a few minutes I have made a full recovery. I visited the restroom and cleaned myself up. Thereafter, Bjørn and I completed our discussion about the newspaper article. Both of us have displayed incredible denial skills and to this day neither of us have spoken about the incident again. Well, until I did it in this post. Don’t you all feel special?

How about all of you? Any chronic fainters out there? Have you fainted in a public and embarrassing way? Do tell…

________________________________

Entering this post into this week’s DudeWrite line up. Head on over to DudeWrite to check out some great posts from male bloggers.

Guest Expressed: “Scott Bartlett & Royal Flush”

Today I’m happy to welcome a special guest and a fellow humourist – Scott Bartlett (yup, that’s his smiling mug on the left). A while back Scott reached out to see if I’d like to participate in his blog tour and help promote his newly released novel called Royal Flush. I agreed, because I’m always happy to help fellow humour writers and because I’m secretly hoping for 47,23% of the book’s future revenues.

So now, without further ado, I give the word to Scott:

Hey, Nest Expressed readers! I’m Scott, and I come to you today with a guest post as part of the blog tour for my humour novel, Royal Flush.

I want to write about the sort of thing that inspires fiction writers—about what, exactly provides the grist for stories. I’m going to do that in reference to my book, and to do that, I’ll first have to tell you about said book. Which, incidentally, is a very blog-tourish thing to do.

So that worked out well.

Royal Flush asks the question: can a man who throws his dates in a dungeon succeed romantically?

It’s about a man known only as the King, who rules a land known only as the Kingdom—a land unrestricted by geography or history. The book is divided into four parts, and in each one the King fails spectacularly with yet another woman. (Whether he fails in the final part is something I can’t divulge here, of course.)

It may not surprise you that the chief inspiration for this story was a high school career completely devoid of romance. Not for lack of trying, though—I asked out numerous attractive girls, and was rejected by them unanimously.

I wasn’t bitter—in fact, the sheer consistence of it began to amuse me. My self-esteem was intact, too, being a helpless egomaniac. But I started to think about the sorts of person likely to encounter utter romantic failure. I decided it might be funny to write a story about a man whose lack of luck with the ladies stems from being incredibly depraved and moronic.

At this point I feel I should note that I did not base the King on myself.

Do you believe me?

Anyway. The point I’m trying to make is that no matter how fantastic a story is (I’m talking about a story’s relationship with reality, not its quality), the inspiration usually comes from normal, everyday things. And with its tendency to flout the laws of physics and logic, its zombie advisor, and its passing mention of dragons, Royal Flush is fairly fantastic.

The Kingdom Crier provides another example. Run by Editor Duke Edward, the Kingdom Crier is the seemingly all-knowing news outlet that busies itself with publicizing every embarrassing detail of the King’s personal life. It’s more of a tabloid, really, and in the past the King has attempted to shut it down by ordering its entire staff beheaded. But such is the tabloid’s popularity that legions of peasants gathered to picket the castle’s drawbridge until the King rescinded the order.

Inspiration for the Kingdom Crier came from my distaste for tabloids, which I developed during my three-year stint working at a grocery store.

I took Introductory Linguistics in university, and in every example sentence the teacher used to illustrate English word order or whatever else, the same two people seemed to get recycled endlessly: John and Mary. “John and Mary took a picnic basket with them to Signal Hill.” Et cetera.

Thus was the Traveling Linguists’ Guild born—a group of nomads who travel from place to place, working on their unified theory of language. They drag two prisoners around with them named John and Mary, who they use in presentations.

The Traveling Linguists’ Guild comes to the Kingdom to ask the King a small favour. Their unified theory is nearly complete—it applies to every language they’ve encountered, except for that of a single troublesome tribe, who they ask the King to exterminate. The King agrees.

Did I mention that the King isn’t based on me?

Scott Bartlett has been writing fiction since he was fifteen. His recently released novel, Royal Flush, is a recipient of the H. R. (Bill) Percy Prize. Click here to buy the ebook ($3.99) or to order the print book ($12.99).

Guess Who’s Back?

No, it’s not Elvis Presley. He’s dead, remember? Ooooor, is he?

Anyways, it’s just me.

Hope it’s not a let-down after I’ve gotten your hopes up with the whole Elvis thing!

My girlfriend and have returned from the fun-yet-hectic family trip. We have slept in eight different places in four different cities during the past two weeks and are now patiently waiting for this incredible achievement to be entered into the Guinness World Records.

We’ve had our good share of drinking, minor injuries and other fun things. We’ve met a bunch of interesting characters. One of them was a girl of around six. Whenever she misspoke she would perform a “system reset” by closing her eyes, shaking her head side to side and saying “oi-oi-oi” in rapid succession. Another one was a guy who complained about amateur guitar players always choosing to play depressing songs. I’m not sure I’ve noticed this trend, but then again, my attention span is…wait, where was I?

What does this have to do with anything?!

In my home town of Kharkov we’ve come across this classically “Engrish” sign for the Children’s Railroad:

To put in two ends comes true free of charge!

In a tiny town of Mestecko in Czech Republic we’ve come across this simple and straightforward road sign:

It’s like two drunk guys arguing while giving you directions…

All in all it’s been great, but I wish it lasted longer. That’s what she said.

Also during the holiday I’ve gotten a pleasant surprise. Remember the “Pulling The Plug” piece I’ve submitted to DudeWrite’s flash fiction contest? Well, it’s been picked as the winner by 2 out of 3 judges, as well as getting the most popular votes, along with another great story from Chiz-Chat. You can read more details and the judges’ comments at DudeWrite, in case you want to, like, read more details…and the judges’ comments.

But enough about me, let’s talk about a few other humourists for a moment.

Another awesome surprise was Martin Bannon sending me a signed copy of his recently released Senseless Confidential. It was waiting for me in the mailbox yesterday when I arrived. I have won Martin’s “leave a comment, win a book” competition. At this rate I think I should start playing the lottery. That’ll teach me to make stupid decisions like playing the lottery! I haven’t started reading the book, but knowing Martin and judging from the great reviews it’s been getting I’m already excited to check it out.

Also I have finally started on Martin Little, Resurrected by Ella Medler. I must shamefully confess that I’ve only gotten through the first two chapters for now. However, it’s already clear that it will be a fun read! Though hey, don’t listen to me, check out the reviews for yourself.

Finally, I will have a special guest on the blog this Wednesday. His name is Scott Bartlett and he’s doing a blog tour for his book Royal Flush, which is also collecting great reviews. So you’ve got that to look forward to now!

How about all of you? Have you had any vacation? How has your life been without my posts in it for a whopping two weeks? Same? Slightly not the same at all? Kind of the same, yet also different?