Tuesday, July 29, 2008

What Is this Crap?

An Original 19th Century Crapper

When plumber Thomas P. Crapper had his name associated with indoor plumbing I am certain he had no idea that crap would come to be associated with so much diverse excrement. I should like to add the following crap to the pile:

Printer Ink Cartridges

Recently I had to purchase an ink cartridge for my Lexmark X5150 all-in-one printer/scanner. I have been extremely happy with his printer and it continues to do an exceptional job after three years of use.

The problem (crap) is that when I purchased the replacement ink cartridge I found that the price had increased to two and a half times what I previously paid for replacement ink cartridges! That one cartridge now costs more than I paid for the Lexmark X5150 machine! Worse than that, when I checked out of Office Depot, the clerk informed that I could purchase a new all-in-one printer/scanner for the same or less cost as I paid for the Lexmark X5150 !

Is this a marketing ploy by the manufacturer? Is Lexmark—which has its corporate headquarters about 80 miles east of me in Lexington, Kentucky—increasing ink costs to force folks to purchase new printers?

Whatever the answer, I believe that paying more for an ink cartridge than one pays for the machine that holds it is pure, 100% crap!

Internet Postings of the Personal Data of Others

Recently, after more than a year in hibernation, I reactivated my blog, UCC on the Net in which I provide links and a synopsis of information on the Internet related to the United Church of Christ, the denomination that ordained me as a minister. (I figure that is the least I can do since my health prevents me from doing what I truly desire, pastoring a church).

Yesterday I found a blog, Clerical Whispers, published by an Irish Roman Catholic priest who identifies himself as Sotto Voce, that had posted an excellent spiritual biography of Senator Barak Obama. I was so impressed with Clerical Whispers that I have subscribed to the blog via Bloglines.

The problem (crap) isn’t the blog or the post; it is a comment someone left on the blog directing folks to Obama's mother's original Social Security Number Application!

Why would anyone post this? Who, may I ask, is so inquisitive/prying as to want to view it? To me, whoever posted the application on the Internet is worse than a gossip monger—i.e., pure, 100% crap!


  1. Dear Sir,
    Indeed what a wonderfull biography about Senator Obama. Lately here in Europe we get to know the Senator a little better. I'am just wondering, when i go and vote(in Holland), the thing i do is reading all party's election programs and dicide how real is the program when one is financing it.To me, and of course I can be very wrong, in America the person instead of the program is more important. Frankly i don't know or care if the prime minister is married, or what his religion is.
    Of course I Vote, because if i don't i can't have any critic on my gouvernement for 4 years and there is nothing like a good dicussion about all the things that are wrong, as if i could do a better job.
    Sorry about the rambling.
    I've been reading your blog for some time now and i think it's great.
    Kind regards, Elka (The Netherlands)

  2. OfficeMax can refill most cartridges for a fraction of the cost. It might be worth checking out.

  3. It must be a Lexmark printer thing because we discovered the same thing, the ink cartridge costs more than we paid for the printer in the first place, but we do what we must. That is quite the commode there.

  4. printer carts are horrendously expensive. get alex onto them - he'll sort them out!

  5. Anonymous: Yes, it was an excellent biography about Senator Obama.

    Regarding the election of the U.S. President, I fear your observation is on target.

    The way it used to be was that no one knew who the presidential candidates would be until the party convention during the summer before the November presidential election. The way the primary system is now set up, the presidential candidates are now know long before the conventions. And that really underkines the conventions.

    The way it used to be is that during the conventions a political party would hold meeting and develop its “party platform”—the list of principles which a party supports. The candidate for president wasn’t chosen until after the platform was completed and how a candidate stood on that platform was once one of the deciding points that deligates to the convention used in selecting the candidate.

    The way it is now, with the candidate chosen long before the convention, the candidate controls the party’s platform. I suppose that this is the result of the American obcession with the “cult of personality”—or, perhaps, the underlying desire of a decaying democracy to have a king, not a president.

    I hope that in some ways provided at least my view into the crazy U.S. presidential process.

  6. Nobody sells printers to make a profit. They make printers to sell ink which is where the money is. When you weigh up the average cost of a cartridge vs. the amount of ink in it, it works out that ink costs about $2000/gallon. Almost as much as gas!

    Using generic ink makes no sense. It may save money but if it isn't made specifically for your printer's nozzle size and is too thick it will clog the nozzles. There is no economical repair when that happens so you will soon find yourself buying a new printer.

  7. Wall Mart carries generic carts for the lexmark printer at half the cost of a lexmark cart. I ought to know I have one of those naty things mt self it's a X4200 series.
    Hugs and God's blessings. mike g.said that.

  8. :

    Thomas: OK! I’ll check out OfficeMax.

    Sassy Mama Bear: You may be right. The salesman at Office Depot, where I purchased the cartridge, pointed out that Cannon and HP cartridges are much less expensive.

    Maxxo: You right! Alex probably knows more about my printer that I do since the furball has been napping on it for years.

    Anonymous: I believe you are right. It’s just as Gillette invented the safety razor not to sells razors but to sell replacement blades.

    Mike Golch: OK, Mike! I check out Wal-Mart, too.

  9. I have the same printer, Math went on the web and got the ink loads cheaper. Hope you don't mind nick, i copied the divorce cakes, found them hilarious.

  10. well i just bought a hp printer scaner for 70bucks and that was a week ago and it tells me i have no ink left that is crazy!

  11. Strangely I also have a photo of a loo on my blog... how strange is that?

  12. Queenie: Thanks. I shall check the Internet for a better price. BTW, the price I paid for that one cartridge at Office Depot was $83.00.

    Chica: Not necessarily crazy, Tiffany. As the commenter above wrote: they make printers not to sell printers but to sell ink.

    Mutley the Dog: I looked at the loo on your blog. I like mine better.

  13. honestly i am scared of Obama winning. But that is me, a loely Canadian hopeful that "the man" won't mess up our nice oil industry.

    I always thought that inventing something would be cool... but then i learned early those guys got some nasty nick names.. hehe..

  14. Check Walgreen's on filling those ink cartridges.

    I think the 'crapper' pictured here is much prettier than ant I've seen. :)

  15. I remember it wasn’t too long ago that some folks got into serious trouble for publishing the passport applications of McCain, Clinton, and Obama. I should think that this falls under the same category.

    As for printers and ink, I let my office manager handled that stuff. (I never was the “hands on” pastor you have been).

    Peace, my dear friend.

  16. Lovely crapper!
    Obviously, the owner does not have young boys. Just sayin'.

    And the ink cartridges? I feel your pain.

  17. As Cousin CD would say "I hear ya, I feel ya."

    When y'all find the answer please lets us know.


  18. I do not understand how someone could obtain Obama's mother's original Social Security Number Application. Unless they worked for Social Security.