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Over 4 years ago, in January 2006, I treated myself to a laptop bag. I hadn't actually gotten to see one or hold one before ordering it, but the reviews I saw on the bags from this Seattle company, Tom Bihn, were overwhelmingly positive. I already had a "Brain Cell" laptop sleeve from them to protect my laptop. Now I wanted a bag that would hold my Brain Cell.

I settled on their "ID Messenger Bag", and picked my colors. I believe the bag was $140 when I bought it, which seemed like a lot. It has been worth every penny. After over 4 years of almost daily use, there is virtually no wear showing. Most bags would wear out after a year or two, but this one lasted. Definitely makes it worth the extra money.

Then, a month or so ago, I picked it up and part of the stitching attaching the shoulder strap came loose. On a whim I checked their website and found that they do repairs. No charge if it was a manufacturing defect, otherwise let them know what and they'll get you an estimate. After how long I had been using it, it absolutely did not fall into the manufacturing defect category!

One of the beautiful things about Tom Bihn Bags is that they are all handmade at their factory in Seattle, so if it was sent in for repair, it would be fixed right where it was originally made.

I sent my request for an estimate, and was very pleasantly surprised when I got an email back telling me they'd cover the cost of the repair. Wow! I was completely expecting to pay $25-50. A free repair on a 4+ year old bag? Now that's customer service!

I wanted a couple accessories (an organizer pouch, luggage tags, etc.) so I put an order for those in with the bag when I sent it in. I also put an Official Stunt Double Moose in the bag's Moose pocket along w/a point & shoot camera, since real Moose isn't allowed to travel unsupervised. Less than a week after the bag was received by Tom Bihn, it was repaired and back home! OSD Moose got to visit Tom Bihn's retail store, and got pictures. And the accessories I wanted? The ones I gave them my credit card number for? The note that came back with the bag & Moose said that they were included at no charge!

Now tell me, with service like that, who wouldn't recommend this company to everyone they know? Yeah, Tom Bihn gets my recommendation just based on the incredible quality of their bags, but their awesome customer service just reinforces it!


My ID with Moose in it:
Tom Bihn & Moose


Stunt Double sitting atop a mountain of Brain Cells:
At the Tom Bihn store in Seattle

The biggest problem with Tom Bihn bags is that they don't wear out, so you can't talk your husband into letting you get another one!
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Here's Moose with the w00tstocker's he's met so far:
(can you hot link Facebook photos? We'll find out & if not I'll upload 'em somewhere else tomorrow. It's late, yo.)

Paul & Storm (although in this picture Storm & Paul is more accurate, but sounds weird):


Adam Savage:


Bill Corbett:


And w/Phoenix ComiCon, Moose should have Wil Wheaton added to his collection before w00tstock too.


BTW, if you are a Moose fan, but we haven't connected on Facebook, he does have his own account: http://www.facebook.com/moose.snyder. He never adds anyone, but he accepts all friend requests. No, I haven't completely lost it yet, Moose does not have a Twitter account, although he is narcissistic enough to be contemplating a Flickr account with nothing but pictures of himself...
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OK, I lied. I never got around to posting anything today. But I did get a picture put up on Flickr (and realized that I didn't have a Moose set on Flickr yet! The horror!).

So here is a picture of me and the Fabulous Moose with the super awesome, funny, and adorable Chris Hardwick, aka Nerdist.

Chris Hardwick

Even tough I'm not totally thrilled with this picture it is MUCH better than the first try. I love my [livejournal.com profile] hellbob, but he's really not that good at taking pictures of me with other people.
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I'm already at 33 37 votes for the Official Quark Expeditions Blogger contest!

It's not a lot of votes compared to the 3848 I need to win, but it's an excellent start. It has already put me ahead of 3/4 of the entrants.

I'm already all the way up to page 8 7 when the entries are sorted by popularity. Once I hit 50 votes I'll be up to page 5. At 100 votes, page 3.

To bump the last guy off of the first page, I need 295 291 more votes. There are only 5 people with over 1000 votes, and only 1 of them is over 2000.

I have 43 more days to collect votes. I've got some ideas for getting more votes. I've started to implement some of them. I really want this, but I don't want to be too pushy.

But, I will be sending emails. Some to specific people asking them individually for help. Some to groups asking for help more generically. My family already got the "You're my family, you HAVE to vote for me" email.

Also, I'm not above bribery. If you're a teacher and you get your class to vote for me, I will send your class messages/videos/postcards/whatever from Antarctica while I'm there. If you are famous and you use your fame to tell people to vote for me, I will mention your awesomeness as I blog from Antarctica and pimp your product, be it book, music, whatever.

I've gotten a few retweets already. I've also got some Facebook repostings of it, and an LJ repost. THANK YOU everyone who's voted and/or reposted.

I went and got a bit.ly address to use. I wanted to keep it short, but couldn't get cold, brr, brrr, or frozen so my short url to get to my voting page is http://bit.ly/frzn. Just remember it by thinking that it's too cold for vowels. LOL Feel free to spread that url around wherever you can!

Rick has said before that when I set my mind to something I make sure I do it. Well, he hasn't seen anything yet.

I WILL WIN THIS TRIP TO ANTARCTICA.

There are so many places I've wanted to travel too. Of all of them, Antarctica is the one I am least likely to be able to pull off on my own. It would require winning the lottery. Thanks to this contest, I don't have to win the lottery, I just have to have the most awesome friends on the entire internet!

So remember everyone, vote early and vote often*!
*Only real human beings with personal email addresses may register to vote. One vote per person.

http://bit.ly/frzn
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Moose is off to another adventure. Non-LJ Pete & Paula just picked him up today so they can take him on their trip to Africa later this week. They are going to Ethiopia to pick up their new son! This will be continent #5 for Moose. Just Australia and Asia left after this.

Writercon was in Minneapolis this weekend, and while I didn't go, I got to meet one of my LJ friends who was in town for it!
[livejournal.com profile] nwhepcat had twittered to me that she was here and that we should meet sometime this weekend. So after P & P left with Moose I headed on down to the Mpls Radisson. We didn't succeed in finding a coffee shop, so we ended up at Block E in Applebee's. It was actually the same place I sat and chatted with [livejournal.com profile] allegraconbrio when she was in Mpls for work and I got to meet her. So now that I've done it twice it is officially a trend. When meeting LJ fanfic friends we will go to Applebee's.

Once again I have survived meeting an internet friend and they weren't crazy or a serial killer. Not sure how long that luck will hold out... Luckily I have [livejournal.com profile] hellbob to give me advice when I'm going to meet someone. "Don't die. Don't let anyone wear your face."

Besides meeting [livejournal.com profile] nwhepcat, I got to see someone I'd met a couple years ago. This picture was taken in Las Vegas:
MooseXander
Flat Xander was with [livejournal.com profile] allegraconbrio on the "Vegas, Baby! Hookers & Blow!" trip. Today NWHepcat had him in her bag. She pulled him out for a picture when we stopped to take a picture of the coolest manhole cover I have ever seen:

Grilling in Minneapolis

I googled it and it was part of the first major public art undertaking of the Minneapolis Arts Commission in 1984. They commissioned 11 artists to design manhole covers, and they're on 6th & 7th Streets between Nicollet and Hennepin.

Sometime when Moose is back home I think I need a picture of him on the grill!
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Do you still need a 2009 calendar? You should buy a Moose calendar! You can order them HERE!.

It's got pictures of Moose on four different continents. It's got pictures by [livejournal.com profile] chebutykin, [livejournal.com profile] genevra, [livejournal.com profile] mcpenguin, and me. It's also got Moose. Lots & lots of Moose!

Everyone totally needs one of these. Go buy it now.

Preview the photos

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I ♥ Sinfest. In this post from back in August, Moose declared that he did not support Palin. It looks like the other mooses out there read that & added their support...

SinfestMoose
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I don't post a lot about politics, but I just have to make this post on Moose's behalf. He would like to state that he does not support McCain & Palin. What does he have against them, you ask? It is this, from the U.S. News & World Report article, 10 Things You Didn't Know About Sarah Palin!

MooseStew


Yes, Moose would like to state for the record that he just can not support any member of any political party that EATS his family!

In other news, Moose likes boobies!


Photo © 2008 the super awesome Moose travel companion [livejournal.com profile] chebutykin!
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Well, my [livejournal.com profile] hellbob made it home safe and sound from his New York City Adventure!
I'm sure he'll post lots of details about it soon.

He brought a pile of postcards home for me, and an awesome pair of socks!
New York Taxi socks!
sock
Uploaded with plasq's Skitch!


Moose couldn't go on the trip with Hellbob since he's on his way to Ecuador and then the Galapagos Islands with [livejournal.com profile] chebutykin. So I sent a Stunt Double Moose with him instead. :)

They saw Grand Central Station:



They saw some really tall buildings:



They saw the New York City Public Library:

Re: NYCPLlion

And they met some natives:

Re: ETMoose

And, of course, [livejournal.com profile] hellbob & [livejournal.com profile] kaldeth's evening ended with the Police concert which Stunt Double did not go to. I'll let Hellbob rave on about the concert. :) But I will say "Hooray!!!" for the fact that Hellbob brought me back a Chip Freakin' Kidd designed Toast In The Machine T-shirt!!!

toast
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For years I've resisted making Moose his own LiveJournal...

But I couldn't resist making him a Facebook profile. So many people were putting up pictures with Moose in them and I wanted to be able to tag him. :)

You can find Moose's profile here: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1350234686
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Werner Herzog's film Encounters At the End of the World is going to be playing at the Lagoon on July 11th! The site only lists one day, but I'm guessing that is the day it starts its run there.
I wanna go see it!
It'll be so cool if [livejournal.com profile] mcpenguin is in it. And I'll get to see some of the places that [livejournal.com profile] mcpenguin took Moose when he was down there. No Moose on film though. He wasn't down in McMurdo at the same time as Herzog.

If you aren't in Minneapolis and want to know when you can see this documentary, THINKFilm's got the schedule HERE.

Unfortunately, [livejournal.com profile] tx_cronopio, there are NO Texas showings listed. :(
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Moose has been officially disapproved of by Cinnamon, the Disapproving Rabbit.

Click here for Cinnamon's blog

CinnamonMoose
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...and he brought a CD with some pictures!
More to be posted later (I have to watch Supernatural, dontcha know?!!)

FrozenMoose
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I still haven't gotten any pictures from Moose's current adventure, but I did get an update on him from [livejournal.com profile] mcpenguin:

"well, the little guy has been to the south pole, been up ob hill, and over to the scott hut, and up by the rollcage mary on the hut ridge trail.

oh...he's got a thing for black russians now."
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I've got the basic structure for Moose's website done! It's not perfect yet, and it doesn't have all its content yet, but it's out there on teh intarwebs!

http://www.dreamflyte.com/Moose/home.html
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I feel like such a geek. I just made Moose his own gmail account.
MooseAdventures@gmail.com

To defend my geekery, I did this because I'm making a Moose website for my HTML class. But still...
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Moose has arrived in Antarctica! Yay!

[livejournal.com profile] mcpenguin posted:
i am now the proud guardian of....wait for it....wait for it.....one smaller-than-i-had-expected stuffed moose!
so now, i have to figure out what to do with a stuffed moose.


So if you ever decide to mail yourself to Antarctica, pack enough food for just under a month.
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For all you kids who have just recently joined the twisted world of Ms. HellZiggy, here is the story of teh Moose, because [livejournal.com profile] southernronin asked me about him and it's been quite a while since I posted the story:



I got Moose in January, 1996 shortly before me & [livejournal.com profile] hellbob moved down here to the real world. My friend Becca, who was our roomate in Fargo, and I came down to the cities a couple weeks before we moved so that we could do laundry. We were so poor that it was cheaper to do it that way because Kathy let us put the gas on her gas credit card & we used their washer & drier. When we stopped in Alexandria for gas we each got a matching Moose because they were cute. We wanted to both get the same one since I was going to be moving away. A month later I was going to Vegas for [livejournal.com profile] scubagrrl's wedding & I had to go by myself because we couldn't afford for [livejournal.com profile] hellbob to go to, so I took Moose along as a good luck charm. Since I went for the weekend with $100 cash & my return ticket home and still had about $5 when I got home I decided that he worked as a good luck charm. Then a couple months later [livejournal.com profile] hellbob & I went to a concert with Jeanine and while there I found Moose in my bag. Since he had snuck in with us we included him in some pictures I took. After that I took him with sometimes and took pictures of him and at some point it turned into Moose always coming with. His first big trip was Arizona and since then he's travelled with me to LA twice, Vegas again, Seattle & Washington state and Toronto.

Here he is in LA. He went to a taping of the Tonight Show with us:


He's also been photographed with several people, mostly at sci-fi conventions. Now he also travels with other people. [livejournal.com profile] genevra & [livejournal.com profile] akdar took him on a 2 week tour of Italy, Jeanine took him to Mexico, [livejournal.com profile] chebutykin has taken him to BNAT in Austin, TX, and to Puerto Rico and a co-worker took him on a Caribbean cruise.

Here he is at the Grand Canyon:


He actually has his own photo album in my gallery at: http://www.dreamflyte.com/gallery/main.php?g2_itemId=1958

When I went to Toronto I had more people ask me when I got home if I got Moose's picture taken with James Marsters than if I had.
I got to have my pic taken with James and I asked him if he would hold Moose for the picture and he did.



One of the most recent celebrity encounters he had was with Penn & Teller:

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