hitler is bad news

StumbleUpon is a toolbar you can upload to your internet browser that is the only legal version of crack i know.  as you click the “ Stumble!” button, you are sent to various web pages that match your personal preferences. if you rate the sites you like by clicking the “like” () button, and rate the sites you don’t like by clicking the “dislike” () button, StumbleUpon finds pages that like-minded people have “liked” and sends them to you.  similarly, a person with similar interests to yours might get sent a page that you “liked”.

but the best feature, in my mind, is that you can easily send something to a friend that you want them to see.  let’s say i’ve found a pair of shoes that i’m on the fence about. do i love them? can i live without them?  with the web page open, i send it to eric through Stumble. i am prompted to enter a message, and when i am, i write “what do you think of these?”  on the other end, eric will click his “Stumble” button and the shoes will appear with a toolbar at the top that displays my message.  he can easily hit “reply” and include his response.

StumbleUpon is the neatest thing ever, but it is also the biggest time sink known to man.  i hide it at work, but sometimes, when i’m on a boring conference call, or avoiding monthly database entry, i un-hide the toolbar and click away.  eric is my Stumble buddy, and when ever we send things to each other, we’re in serious danger of hosting an entire conversation via stumble.

Eric: i like them. but not sure they’re worth that much.

Me: yeah…that’s how i secretly feel too.  how are you, by the way?

Eric: i’m all right. how are you doing? any fun weekend plans?

the best part is, the entire “conversation” will appear with the same website for the shoes.

so the other day, eric posted on twitter that he was asked out on a date.

curious, i Stumble his tweet to him and asked “with who? tell me everything.”

eric then clicks reply, and his tweet is sent back to me with a note saying “he’s originally from germany but lives in boston. he is often in san francisco.”

i click reply.  “do you have a picture?”

he replies with a new page that, this time, is simply a picture of hitler. “this is the only picture i have of him.”

a conversation ensues, all over a picture of hitler.  i ask more questions, eric shares more details, and eventually the conversation evolves off of the subject.

“so,” i reply, “what else is news?”

not yet taking our conversation to email, which we usually do when we realize how ridiculous we are, being by talking through Stumble, eric replies with his news–which is, unfortunately bad news.

even though the news makes me sad, the delivery makes me laugh.

i take a snapshot and send it – via email – back to eric. “henceforth,” i write, “all bad news must be delivered by Hitler.

a few minutes later, eric sends me an email back.

“i needed that laugh,” he writes. “so, thank you.”

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