Tuesday, July 10, 2012

It's Freecycle, not FREAKcycle

Being the tightwad frugal zealot that I am, I just love freecycle. Over the years, we have been blessed with some wonderful things, thanks to the generosity of random strangers. 

In addition, I love giving away things on freecycle whenever I need to declutter or downsize. The very vast majority of people are polite, courteous, thankful, show up when promised, etc. "No-shows" are extremely rare, unless you are offering junk that people leave on your porch after driving by and glancing at it. So don't offer junk. If I'm getting rid of something because it is old, broken, stained, etc - it needs to go in the garbage. No reason to make someone drive to my house just to pick something up and then put it in their garbage can at home. 

Last but not least, being on the freecycle email alerts can provide some interesting, umm, entertainment. Such as when a lady offered several dozen empty (as in, used) Capri-Sun pouches. What??!? Turns out, people make all sorts of creative items out of them. Just google it

But some people? Who feels safe going to the house of a complete psycho, no matter what free item they are offering? Especially when your offer is for a Kombucha tea "mother", or something of the sort. Not me!

How about this person's disclaimers at the end of every one of their offers:

I do not check my e-mail every two minutes: do not expect an immediate response. Multiple requests for this item will be deleted. Replies not containing the exact line as this message, will be deleted. I do not call/text. What you see, is what you get. Please don't ask.
Please provide specific day/time for pickup. Please keep in mind that I am a daytime morning sleeper and usually do not awake before 2 (sometimes later); however, pickup is 24 hours.
My favorite lines are the very last ones:
Please do not ask if you: 
Have been a no-show 
Did not say "thank you" after getting something 
Are not capable of reading and following directions

"Yes, hello, sorry I am emailing for the fifth time, but it's been ten minutes since your item was listed and I have not heard back from you yet. I'm not sure if I used the correct subject line the first few times - did you get my emails? Would you prefer to talk/text? Also, I was wondering if you are giving away anything else besides what was in your original post? Anything at all? I'm just not sure I am capable of reading and following instructions. THANK YOU IN ADVANCE, and I promise I will show up when I say I will."

Somebody needs to get a dog to train instead of trying to re-educate random strangers on manners. Even if you have those "standards" - WHY broadcast it and look like a freak???

Neurotic, much? Maybe I'll just go to the store and buy it new instead, thankyouverymuch. 


  1. I wonder if she wants a thank you note as well:

    Most dear Random Stranger:

    Thank you with every inch of my heart for the garbage bag of toilet paper rolls. The children to whom I teach art will truly think of you when they make their crafts. Indeed, I made each of them write a letter to you as well. Your generosity knows no bounds,

    Ever so sincerely,

    Sheesh, if she's got such an issue with people perhaps freecycle is not the place for her. Or at least move to a 'I'm putting it in such and such alley, first come, first serve.'

    I hope you're staying cool over there, lucky #7 better be an easy labour just to pay you back for his summer birthday!

    God bless Dad, the six, and especially you and seven during this time,


  2. I had to smile. :) I use Freecycle too and have also experienced some of what that poor lady has.

    There are people who give quite a bit away frequently on Freecycle and that lady's post ending is indicative of the nonsense they receive on a regular basis.

    It is similar to what some of us do on Craigslist:

    "Don't bother spamming or attempting to scam me; I will NOT respond. I do not deliver. Cash only." Etc. People try to take advantage and I'm sure that lady is only trying to avoid an excessive amount of annoying emails.

  3. You should try renting a house on Craigslist. I put in the ad: NO SMOKING.

    Then I got an email. I'm on disability for asthma and I use oxygen, but I only smoke in the garage.

    KABOOM! Next.......... After that I was tempted to put, NO SMOKING WITHIN 5 MILES. THAT MEANS YOU.

  4. I like kombucha! Not enough to make it ... but there are good probiotics in it.

  5. Um...needs oxygen for asthma...

    and smokes...

    and evidently has an inability to put two and two together...

  6. What's wrong with kombucha? I'm surprised you aren't a proponent.

  7. I, too, and a big fan of Freecycle. I usually offer more than I ask, and I have been given some really great things (my most recent acquisition was a treadmill that is really cool and had a great cancer-survivor story behind it so it was sort-of like the stars aligned and I was supposed to meet this person for even just that brief moment of picking it up at his house). But I agree, people can be really weird about their expectations and the "Wanted" ads always blow me away if it's a user I'd never seen. The moderators in the group I belong to are pretty good at reminding people of the rules (offer something before you ask for something if you are new, common thank you courtesy, make sure to go back and post if your want was fulfilled or your offer was taken). It's a great way to keep things out of landfills and if you don't want to have a garage sale, it's a nice way to get rid of something that still has value if you don't need money for it.


Your KINDLY WORDED, constructive comments are welcome, whether or not they express a differing opinion. All others will be deleted without second thought.