Mr. Otis Regrets

Como se dice “Whoopsy” en Espanol?

According to a story surfaced on Gizmodo , the luxury high-rise tower, which started construction in 2007, was originally designed for 20 floors. But the the developers decided to push the design to include 47 floors with 269 homes. When completed, it will be Benidorm’s highest building at 650 feet.

There seemed to be just one important oversight: In going up to 47 floors, designers forgot to take into account room for an elevator shaft. El Pais reports that the architects on the project resigned in May 2012.

The building “represents a long story of incompetence,” according to El Pais. The coastal town had a building boom that led to the nickname “Beniyork” for its skyline of high-rises.

But then the recession hit. Intempo’s developer, which had once advertised the building as the “banner of the future,” and the bank that provided the loan for construction both went bankrupt in 2009. The building has cost €100 million so far.

“We had heard reports on the elevator last week when we listed the building to generate advance interest,” wrote Terry Walker, a spokesperson for Walker Property Spain’s London office, in an email to Yahoo News.

Saturday Song

What does it sound like when two people who don’t like each other make kick ass music? The Civil Wars shows us.

3D Weekend Five: Greatest Animated Bromances

The last (maybe) in the Greatest Bromance Series:

5.  SpongeBob & Patrick from SpongeBob Squarepants: If Lucy & Ethel were cartoon sea creatures…

 4.  Mowgli & Baloo from The Jungle Book:  The bear *tried* to be a mentor, but he was too much of a boob, and his young charge usually ended up saving HIS neck.

 3.  Robin Hood & Little John from Robin Hood: A lovely nod to Errol Flynn & Alan Hale, Sr.

2.  Charlie Brown & Linus from the Peanuts specials:  He’s the only one who’s ever seen worth in CB.

 1.  Bugs & Daffy in every Warner Brothers cartoon ever:  Don’t all brothers fight?

 Apologies for being a week late with this.  If my family had frequent flier miles for our local ER, we’d be on our way to Tahiti by now.

Credit Where Due

I know that most people who get into deep debt on credit cards do so through their own foolishness and lack of discipline. That being said, there are few industries this side of pronographers who are as repulsive as credit card companies — a broad statement with many exceptions no doubt. They make short term borrowing too easy while simultaneously making their agreements too one-sided and complex an d ultimately too difficult to dig out of if one does act foolishly. So seeing this story (h/t: Consumerist) about a RUssian man who read the fine print of a credit card offer, changed it and then obligated the credit company to grant him interest free unlimited credit makes me smile wide. From Russia Times:

A Russian man who decided to write his own small print in a credit card contract has had his changes upheld in court. He’s now suing the country’s leading online bank for more than 24 million rubles ($727,000) in compensation.

Disappointed by the terms of the unsolicited offer for a credit card from Tinkoff Credit Systems in 2008, a 42-year-old Dmitry Agarkov from the city of Voronezh decided to hand write his own credits terms.

The trick was that Agarkov simply scanned the bank’s document and ‘amended’ the small print with his own terms.

He opted for a 0 percent interest rate and no fees, adding that the customer “is not obliged to pay any fees and charges imposed by bank tariffs.” The bank, however, didn’t read ‘the amendments’, as it signed and certified the document, as well as sent the man a credit card. Under the agreement, the bank OK’d to provide unlimited credit, according to Agarkov’s lawyer Dmitry Mikhalevich talking to Kommersant daily.

“The opened credit line was unlimited. He could afford to buy an island somewhere in Malaysia, and the bank would have to pay for it by law,” Mikhalevich added.

Agarkov also changed the URL of the site where the terms and conditions were published and hedged against the bank’s breaking of the agreement. For each unilateral change in the terms provided in the agreement, the bank would be asked to pay the customer (Agarkov) 3 million rubles ($91,000), or a cancelation fee of 6 million rubles ($182,000).

I don’t know Russian contract or commercial law, but he certainly has a good argument. I don’t think it’s a fraud since he did it openly and the bank accepted the application. Why should the individual be alone in bearing the risk inherent in not reading documents? If he failed to read the fine print the bank would nail him to the wall. So yeah, he’s too clever by half probably, but I wish I’d thought of it. :-)

Saturday Open Thread

On this date in 1977, President Jimmy Carter agreed to give the Panama Canal to the People’s Republic of China… er… Panama.

Do it till you're black and blue

This Afternoon’s Broadcast is Brought to You By…

in honor of -fritz’s birthday…

Friday Open Thread/Happy Birthday, -fritz-!

fritz13For our favorite Deutsche mark, who keeps us in krullers & koffee.

Happy, happy day, darling -fritz-!


Light 'em up

Chicago’s just full of baseball anniversaries today, this one a few miles north of that below softball-esque travesty (Chet Lemon is the man, though) …

Nothing But Blue Sky…

Breaking Bad begins its 8-episode final run this Sunday on AMC. In that vein… meet Dr. Donna Nelson from the Univeorsity of Oklahoma… the show’s science adviser who keeps Walter White sounding authentic — but no too authentic of course. From

Meth could never be as blue as Walter White’s signature Blue Sky meth. “When you crystallize anything that’s colorless, which methylamine crystals are, they usually come out with a yellow tinge because of impurities,” says Dr. Donna Nelson, a professor of chemistry at the University of Oklahoma. Unlike most chemists who grumble about molecular errors they spot while watching TV, however, Nelson has a forum to do something about it: She has been volunteering as Breaking Bad’s science adviser since season two, making sure that Walt’s science lectures (and pedantic tutorials to Jesse) actually made sense. But just because she deals with hard facts as a scientist doesn’t mean that she isn’t willing to grant artistic license. While she did tell show creator Vince Gilligan that the meth’s “blue was a little too blue,” she recalls that “I think he wanted Walt to have a trademark. So, it’s a little exaggerated. That’s OK. It’s not supposed to be 100 percent factual.”

Nelson first made contact with Gilligan after reading an interview he gave to Chemical & Engineering News in which he admitted the show was in need of some assistance when it came to making Walt a believable chemistry wonk. “I thought, hey, this is an opportunity to build a bridge,” she said. “I knew how much the chemistry community wanted to see correct science in movies and television, and that they also wanted to see scientists presented appropriately.” Too long has popular media been getting it wrong, she said. Like when a rocket ship is seen flying through space “and you can see the smoke coming out of the rocket and it’s rising,” she laughs. “We know it’s ridiculous.”

More at the link. And here’s the awesome teaser again: