Letting the tiniest bit of power go to your head

Freecycle has had its ups and downs for me. I’ve scored a lot of great stuff, gotten rid of a lot of stuff I didn’t need before.. and then also gotten FLEAS from some unknown item (now i’m not sure whether it was baby clothes or the rug, but it was one of the two, damnit!)..
With the good always comes the bad I suppose, not everything is always going to go perfectly- but i’d have to say the absolute WORST part of freecycle is the local moderators.

I hope where you are that they aren’t overbearing nitpicking morons, but around here that’s what they seem to be.
I realize there are people to keep in line and rules to follow- but to me it seems as though these few people are on a massive ridiculous power trip. Over FREECYCLE. It’s not even a paying gig, what’s the point of turning into Vlad the Impaler and going apeshit just because someone doesn’t quite get their subject line correct?

It started off pretty innocently, I suppose. The amount of rules and emails I got pertaining to the rules seemed WAY over the top, and were so long I doubt anyone who signed up for freecycle even bothered reading the whole thing because no FREE yahoo group should be so incredibly specific and detailed in the amount of rules they have.
That wasn’t the end of being reminded about the rules, though. It seemed like every time ONE person in the group fudged something up a little, every single person in the entire city received the rules, again.. and not just ONE email about the rules. Try three.
Three every single time someone messed up. This equals maybe three times a week. So not only was I getting ALL the freecycle emails for convenience so I didn’t have to log on to the board in order to read all of the offers, but around 9 of the same emails reminding me of the rules i’d already been given a week as well.

Talk about beating a dead horse. People are stupid. People forget rules. This is a free service, you can’t expect everyone to do everything perfectly, right? Well, the moderators of my local freecycle certainly expect everyone to be prim, proper & perfect.

I still wasn’t too bothered by it. It’s easy enough to click delete and go about my way. No biggie.

Then came one of my first posts to the “Wanted” section. I’d read the rules pretty thoroughly, I am a fast reader.. sure, maybe I skimmed, but I thought I had a pretty decent grasp of how to word things and what not to say. I had asked questions to the moderator before when I had posted about giving away 2 gallons of milk we couldn’t use, and got a snarky sarcastic response instead of a helpful one like I had expected from the moderator of a group who is so insistant on things being done the right way.. certainly wasn’t going to be asking any more questions if I was going to be treated like a moron.

So I went ahead and posted about needing baby items.

Very shortly after I received a not-so nice letter back from one of the moderators saying something along the lines of “freecycle is not a charity! you can not post this!”
My immediate response? “wow… what a BITCH”
Of course, I didn’t say anything in response, but it definitely got under my skin.
It didn’t end there.
Like an angry elementary school teacher, the moderator of freecycle then chose to use me as an example and email all members of the local freecycle telling them what I had done (without using my name, but of course) and that this was FORBIDDEN!

I can’t tell you how many times i’ve seen posts just like the one I tried to post get through, with no problem, without them being used as the scapegoat for another bitchfest.. which is one of the main reasons I thought it was ok.
What could I do though? E-mail the moderator back and say I didn’t appreciate being used as an example- especially when it wasn’t in the rules that I couldn’t post what I had asked for?
Not worth my time.

Those had seemed to be the only negative incidents i’ve personally had. Sure, the emails with the rules were still coming multiple times a week.. but again- DELETE, not hard to do.

And then we have today. My breaking point. I’m fat, bloated, hot, uncomfortable, irritable.. and just itching to bite the right person’s head off. In other words, people really shouldn’t fuck with me.

A lady who constantly posts offers about kids items, that i’ve constantly tried to get and never have, posted about a glider ottoman. I have a glider, but no ottoman, so it seemed perfect.
I e-mailed and said we’d love to have the item if still available. She responded the next day (today) saying it was ours, and any time we could pick it up would be fine because she would just leave it outside (a normal thing to do on freecycle).
I responded with that I thought we would be able to swing by before going to the store. I didn’t give a time, as I wasn’t sure when we’d leave.. and since she’d said it would just be outside and that any time was fine I didn’t figure an exact time would be necessary.

Things didn’t exactly go my way and we weren’t able to pick it up on the way to the store. I asked Thomas to pick it up while I got Holden down for a nap.. thinking he would, didn’t happen. I suppose that was the biggest mistake there, but still, pretty innocent on our end.
When i’d realized Thomas hadn’t gone, i’d hoped to just be able to leave right away right then and go, but if you’ve read my blog you know my stomach doesn’t quite agree with things I want to do and I got horribly sick. No reason, just SICK. It was not pleasant.

When I went to check my email so that I could email this woman and let her know what was going on and why we hadn’t gotten it yet- there was already an email waiting for me..
You can probably guess by the tone of this post that it was not too pleasant. To summarize, it said she’d been “waiting all day” and if we weren’t there by 4:30 (which was in 15 minutes from when I finally got to read the email) she was going to give it away to someone else.

I wrote back and explained what had happened and said we could be there soon but there was no way we could make it to her house by 4:30, but that I understood if she wanted to give the ottoman to someone else.
Now, I didn’t expect her to keep it for us, I had hoped she would be understanding and give us the benefit of the doubt… that didn’t happen.
She bitched about how I should have told her sooner and a few other not so lovely things and immediately after I saw she had reposted the item.

Her reposting the item wasn’t really what got under my skin, it was how she handled the whole situation. I probably should have just left it alone, but like I said before, I was just waiting to tear into someone.

I held back though. Just wrote back simple saying that I was sorry, but when you’re 7 months pregnant and have a toddler things don’t always go according to plan- but that I wasn’t technically a ‘no show’ (which is a big no-no in my local freecycle, and something she had said I was in her email) since she had said any time was fine and that she’d just be leaving the thing outside anyways.

What’d she do? She reported me to the big bad moderators who sent me this lovely little nugget:

We have received the emails that show that you have been a no-show.
Please do not request Offers if you do not intend to pick them up
when you say you will.
Offerers make their plans according to when you plan on being
there, even if they say anytime is ok to pick up.
Once you have mentioned a specific time, they have the right to
expect you about that time. Once that time is past it is their right to
schedule a pick up with another person.
Putting off a pick up till it is convenient for you is rude, and repeated reports of this will be cause for you to lose you membership…..as will responding rudely to a member.
Please consider this your 1st no-show warning. Members are allowed only 3
warnings before they are removed from the group.
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.
Senior Owner…(my area)freecycle”

That got my blood absolutely boiling. So now i’ve been used as an example, spammed with the same emails over and over about really stupid rules, and now i’m being treated like a child and warned for something I technically didn’t do wrong?
Preggo don’t think so!

I wasn’t a no-show since she, as I said, was going to LEAVE THE ITEM OUTSIDE and said any time was fine. I never even gave her a definite time, and she never even responded to the email where I had said I would come before going to the store “if that’s okay?”. When I didn’t show up, I emailed her and explained to her the situation and even said I was sorry and that I understood if she wanted to re-post the item for someone else. Were my bowels any of her business? No, and why should I have to walk on eggshells for someone trying to throw something out that i’m willing to come and pick up? Apologizing and giving a brief explanation of why things didn’t qite work out should have been enough for anyone.

If someone had done that for an item I had posted (and actually, they have), would I report them as a no-show to the cunt moderators to be cussed out? Nope, sure wouldn’t. Shit happens. Life gets in the way. Things don’t always go as planned. Who wouldn’t understand that?

The morons of freecycle, that’s who.

Did I respond to the moderators, finally, after being shit on multiple times by them in the past? I sure as shit did!
Still, I think I took the high road in my response compared to how they treat people:

“I was not a no-show. I’m 7 months pregnant and got sick and didn’t have time to email her to tell her I would be late, and when I did have time and apologized she wouldn’t hear any of it. I also told her I understood she was to give it to someone else.
I don’t appreciate things being pinned on me when I can’t control not being able to leave the bathroom for hours.”

After I sent that.. I still didn’t feel quite satisfied, so I sent another just to top it off:

“And I did not respond rudely. I told her I UNDERSTOOD that it was within her rights to give it to someone else because I was not there when I thought I could be. I also apologized.”

My guess as to what will happen next? I’ll probably be removed from freecycle for being rude to the holier-than-thou moderators, OH NOES! As if it’s totally impossible just to go and get another e-mail address and sign back up!

Really, I just felt the need to vent about this beyond-ridiculous situation and perfect example of some fat immature housewife with nothing better to do but crack her imaginary e-whip over a free yahoo! group because her life at home just isn’t fulfilling her. And it probably makes her feel powerful, when really.. she just looks stupid, overbearing, and desperate.

Power hungry freecycle morons.
I hope your local freecycle doesn’t treat you like a diaper-crapping mouth-breathing idiot! If they do, I hope you don’t sit back and take it. People like that deserve to be put in their place.

Posted on July 26, 2009 by Holdin' Holden 6 Comments
Holdin' Holden

About Holdin' Holden



  • This is making me angry just reading it second hand. You were probably way nicer in your email to them than I would have been. ha!

  • I shouldn’t have been so nice! But you know how out of proportion stupid people blow things (ahem.. sarah palin and the letterman comments). THey probably think I was threatening their lives just by explaining what I ACTUALLY said.

    The sad part? It looks like the moderators claimed to have ‘received’ my emails, meaning the chick forwarded them along and still i’m being ‘reprimanded’ like a 5 year old.

  • This is such stupid shit. It really is. The “any time” comment allows you to come and pick it up at 11:59pm that day if you so choose. It’s not like she was waiting around outside all day for you to come and get it. It was outside! Just chillin’.

    Screw those dumb bastards, both the one whom gave it away again after what 5 hours, and the moderators. I feel like the moderators have always been after you for some reason, it’s not like you were ever mean to them. I remember someone once said “Anything for a baby” and you posted something “Anything for…” whatever it was. And they got all pissy. “PLEASE BE SPECIFIC ABOUT YOUR NEEDS”, or some shit.

    They irritate me.

  • that’s exactly what it was, Thomas. I’d seen muktiple ‘anything for baby’ posts so I didn’t think it was an issue, so I posted, and got reamed, then made an example out of.. and then what did I see multiple times afterwards?
    ‘anything for baby’ posts without the same repercussions or being made an example out of.

    Y’know, I bet the moron moderator is one of those twats who stalked my blog for a long ass time, since there is a link in the signature of my email. although somehow I get the feeling the moron doesn’t know how to work a link.

  • Some people are nuts. A lot of the cheapcyle/freecycle people around here probably think I am! I have the WORST luck on those sites. Idk why and I probably never will, but I believe I have given up on them for the most part.

    You are just so awesome that they’re jealous lol! Sad that they have to resort to these measures. Grow up, people!

  • Yeah, if someone is coming to pick up something and I leave it outside for them, I leave it there a few days before I ask what’s up. I leave things covered or on the porch where they won’t get wet – why do I care when they get it? Things have been in my house or office weeks before I realize I need to give them away.