Archive for June, 2018


Bobcat in a Box Opening #2

Despite the title, you will not find a “Bobcat in a Box Opening #1” since I posted that to my Facebook for family and totally forgot that I could put it here as well.

Bobcat in a Box is a subscription service inspired by the on-line comic strip “xkcd”. The service searches the internet for items that have free shipping and meet the price-point you set. The bot that does the searching sends you things based on key words you put in and also words you tell it to avoid. You can tell the bot that the packages are intended for children of various ages if you want to be sure not to get things that would offend the receiver.

My family, like many others, has a White Elephant exchange. This year, we are going to use Bobcat in a Box to buy the presents. I had each family member give me some keywords and am feeding them to the bot in batches of eight at a time. I intend to do this for at least five months and started back in April. Most of the packages are being put aside to be opened at Christmas. I am occasionally opening a package to be sure we are on track.

As you can see, this package contains a flat multi-tool with a sleeve to hold it so the knife part doesn’t cut me when I reach for it. There is also a key to what the various parts do. Unfortunately, the back of the card, where the descriptions are, is in Chinese. Fortunately, I know someone who speaks Chinese and can translate for me. I wouldn’t want to use something in the unapproved manner.

I believe I got this because of either or both of the keywords “travel” and “Scouts”.~~TSG




A Good Week to Find Things

As most of you know, I like to dumpster “dive”. I don’t think I can actually call it “diving” since I never get into the dumpster. That is just crazy unless you are very young, strong and agile. I have a group I check every week and sometimes they yield salable or usable items. This week, one held a gift bag in which I could see a card stuffed with lottery tickets. When I pulled out the bag, I found a small bottle of wine (still sealed and suitable for cooking) and discovered that some of the tickets (they had been scratched) were winners. A few of the tickets had expired. So, $3 worth had to be discarded. But, one of the still valid cards was worth $15. The Found Money Fund is very happy.

The Found Money Fund is where I keep any money I find during the year. FMP made me a lockbox to keep it in. I usually end up with about $30-40, which I spend at the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales. With this ticket and another I found in the trash at Kroger, I have a total of $25 so far this year without the bits and bobs of change I usually find on the ground or in vending machines. This looks to be a good year for holiday shopping.

As you might expect, I also look in coin change machines I pass to see if anyone has left me something. Today, I scooped out three dimes. When I went to put them in the fund, I discovered that one of them is a Mercury Dime from 1942. It’s worth a maximum of $4.50 in mint condition. Mine is probably worth about $1.25. Still, pretty cool!

I forgot to take a picture of the lottery ticket before I cashed it, but here are pictures of the dime. May the coming week be as good to you!~~TSG