Archive for the ‘where’s george’ Category

Esperantists: Humorless or Just Don’t Get It?

April 27, 2012

OK, this is a bit of a rant.  Months and months ago someone on a forum I frequent put up a pretty fun game called The Universal Vending Machine. The principle is that you put a coin, or any other unit of exchange (including miscellaneous objects and impossibilities) into a totally black vending machine I.E. you can’t see what’s in there, nor what you are choosing, and the poster to the forum after you tells you what food, object, whatever you get from the vending machine. This game has been going on a very long time.  Apparently no one has wearied from thinking up imaginative objects to put in the machine nor of funny or related things to come out.

So I decided  to spread the fun around and put an Esperantized version of it over on Lernu.net, about the happeningest place for Esperantists on the internet.

(sound of virtual crickets chirping…)

OK, I did put it in the humor section, months passed and I thought maybe it would do better in the etc.  section. After all folks seem to be having fun there too.

One guy responded appropriately and then…

(sound of virtual crickets chirping…)

Still wanting to spread the fun around, I gave up and put the English version over on the forums of Where’s George.  It’s been a smash hit since day one.

So, are Esperantists just bereft of a sense of humor, lack imagination sufficient to play the game, or do they just not get it?

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Betwixt and Between

January 19, 2010

Sometimes I feel that I choose my hobbies poorly. They seem to contradict each other. I like to register my paper money on WheresGeorge.com, but I also strive not to have singles (Georges) because I try to use dollar coins wherever possible. Also, I occasionally stamp an ‘ad’ for dollar coins on the reverse of my singles in the hope it will spur someone on to asking their bank for dollar coins (and then hoping they will use them, thus getting them into circulation a bit more.)

I’m also an Esperantist and a Lutheran (Missouri Synod). Esperantists tend to be left leaning folks. Lutherans (Missouri Synod) tend to be right of center on many things. This puts me at odds (in my mind) with those who speak Esperanto. (One of my fellow Esperantists was ranting away one on politics and indirectly called me a fascist.  (He didn’t know my political leanings at the time.))

This of course puts me about where I’ve always been, on the outside of the group. I’m even on the fringe of my railroad buddies because I specialize in the railroad stations, not on the locomotives.  Ah well, Jen la vivo.

I Found ‘George’

January 6, 2010

Today I went to our local Weis supermarket to pick up some supplies: bread, milk, tissues. I received as change from the self-checkout a 5 dollar bill marked for ‘Where’s George’ This is the first one I’ve seen since I became a ‘Georger’. With anticipation I drove home, put the groceries away and came down to the computer. This bill is rather folded and wrinkled, where could it have traveled in its life?

I entered the denomination, series date and serial number into ‘Where’sGeorge.com‘ and lo and behold, a hit.  This bill started in the state of Delaware. That’s it. Darn.

On the other hand, so far I’ve never casually met an Esperantist while out and about, so perhaps this hobby isn’t quite as obscure as Esperanto.

More Obscure than Esperanto

December 18, 2009

I think I’ve found a group more obscure than Esperantists. They call themselves ‘Georgers’ and the track paper money. Once again, I forget how I first encountered this phenomenon. I do remember at one point in my life, possibly when I worked at the UPS Store finding a dollar bill marked in red:  ‘Trace this Bill   http://wheresgeorge.com

Somehow I encountered this recently and checked it out.  It’s based on a website and looks like a fun, yet possibly unfulfilling hobby. I’ve entered in about $500 worth of bills in the last month or so and have zero hits to my name. (I had to scavenge about the house and look for the Christmas money in my wife’s drawer.)

The idea is that you go to the website: wheresgeorge.com and input your zip code, the bills denomination, series # and serial number. If you sign up for a free account, you can be notified if any of your bills receives a hit, ie someone else, somewhere enters it on the website.

As I said though, the folks who are hardcore about this call themselves ‘Georgers’. They even have gatherings from time to time.

Unlike Esperantists, who can pretty well hide when not actively speaking Esperanto, to be a Georger, one has to go out and spend dollar bills with red marking on them.  At times, these markings are noticed and met with derision from cashiers, (perhaps more derision than those of us who spend dollar coins.) The fun side is when you get a hit on one of your bills and you can see how far it’s traveled. Try it, you may like it.