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Posts tagged “Houston

Thumbtack’s 10 Best Photo booth Rentals In Houston


Photo booths at parties? They haven’t replaced what we used to have at parties, like say, how DJs largely replaced live bands.

Instead, they’ve become an enjoyable addition to parties. Like Photographers and then videographers.

Not every party wants clowns, magicians, balloon animals, or face paintings, but images of a good time are intrinsic to a party, and the Photo booth niche adds value to the party by increasing the Fun Factor: Like bartenders and caterers.

So I Googled Best Photo Booths in Houston and a website called Thumbtack came up. Thumbtack announces their 10 Best Photo booth Rentals in Houston.

Well I live in Houston, so that’s exactly what I’m looking for. After all, I have some friends and family doing this as a main business or sideline, I’d like to see if they make the cut.

What is Thumbtack’s 10 Best Photo Booth Rentals In Houston?

I click the link, the homepage comes up, and then a block box (one of those menu boxes that block you from exploring the site until you answer questions – like a paywall only more cloy and intrusive).

*Before we show you our Top Ten Photo Booths, are you here for (Check One)

Photo Booth Rental or
Video Booth Rental?*
 
Photo Booth Rental, Duh!
 
*NEXT*
 

*We’re asking you a few questions so we can bring you the right pros.*

The Right Pros? So by that statement there are actually More than 10 Best or does it mean that I’ll get less than 10 results?
 
*NEXT*
 

*What type of event are you hosting? (Check One)*

 
My type of event isn’t listed so I check, *Special Occasion*.
At this point, if there are seven different options of Top Ten. This then, is a Top 70 list.
 
*NEXT*
 

*Which of the following best describes your role? (Check One)*

5 options this time, which means Thumbtack has a 120 Best Photo Booths in the city of Houston alone. And you know, that’s a considerable dilution factor right there.
 
I check *Party Host*
 
*NEXT*
 

*Is your event indoors or outdoors? *

 
Finally, a relevant question for a city with frequent storms.
 
I check Indoors (add 10 more “Best” to the 120)
 
*NEXT*
 

*What kind of booth do you need?*

 
What Kind of Photo BOOTH do I need? A Photo Booth! I’m here for the 10 Best Photo Booths!
They give me three options and here is the thing. Now the 10 Best is up to 160 Best but you know what? Photo Booths are an exceedingly thin slice of a city’s event entertainment industry, which in itself is a luxury and so a thin slice of any city’s industry. After all, there are plenty of Hotels, Party Halls, Theaters, Nightclubs, Restaurants, Theme Parks, even plain old Bars that will rent suites, rooms, space, upstairs, the basement, back patio, or their entire operation with all extras covered, for a party. Freelancers assembled piece-meal for a stand-alone event are a minute fraction of a fraction here.
So if this this much drill-down minutia is required to find a 10 best list to suit me, Thumbtack really has nothing to offer. It’s like buying into a franchise Photo Booth operation. What’s the point? There’s not a Photo Booth franchise operation out there that has established a national or even state-wide reputation that makes a difference to potential customers.There’s no established, reputable Photo Booth franchise equivalent to, say, WOW 1 DAY PAINTING or ILOVEKICKBOXING.
Out of curiosity though, I click the middle choice.
 
*Camera With Backdrop*
 
I must admit, I’m wondering what kind of bizarre Photo Booth company turns away potential clients who don’t want a backdrop?
 
*NEXT*
 

*What kind of pictures would you like?*

 
Oh you’ve got to be kidding me! Three choices! Now up to 190 Best In Houston. Two of them are print or digital.
 
Print OR Digital?!?
 
In this digital age there are Photo booths that cannot or will not do both? Seriously?!?
 
Again, out of sheer curiosity and a rapidly falling opinion of Thumbtack, I choose the middle one. Print.
 
*NEXT*
 

*Would you like props provided?*

 
200 Best Photobooths in Houston now. Thumbtack’s  Bright Red 10 Best is now a pastel pink 200 Best. My tank for putting up with this nonsense is now empty. Stubbornly driving on the fumes of curiosity I pick,
 
*Yes*
 
*NEXT*
 

*How many guests are you expecting at your event?*

 
5 more options. We are now at the 250 Best Photo Booth Rentals in Houston, mark. Damn! The city of Houston has So Much More than 250 freaking Photobooth companies that a list of the 250 Best is possible? How many more Photo Booths didn’t make the cut because they are merely Great but not The Best?
 
On the last drop of trusting anything Thumbtack has to offer, I choose the middle one again.
 
*NEXT*
 

*How old are your guests?* (5 more choices)

 

THAT’S IT!*. I refuse to believe that there are so many thousands of Photo booths in Houston that anyone could cull a 300 Best. Moreover, I refuse to believe (and I certainly don’t want to deal with), Photo Booth companies that draw the line over customers who do OR don’t want a backdrop, customers who do OR don’t want props, and customers who may have more OR less than, 100 guests!

In fact, I don’t want to deal with any luxury company that is so uncomfortable  with establishing a relationship with a client, that they would use an entity like Thumbtack to have potentials fill out an online-style medical form.

F U THUMBTACK!

*But really that wasn’t it. I drilled through four more menus (15 – count ’em – 15 menus with no end in sight) before I finally quit.

Addendum:

Don’t want to fill out Thumbtack’s exhaustive Client Application?

Fine then! No 2017 10 Best for you!

You have to settle for Thumbtack’s 2016 9 best.

Here it is.

Thumbtack’s 9 Best of 2016 Photo Booth Rentals in Houston

Best of 2016


pb300Here’s a Best Of for you,
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Are your shelves still too empty?

Look for my story Cedo Looked Like People, in the anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt. Available from Crystal Lake Publishing and available in Print for $12.99 or eBook for $2.99.

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Also available from Crystal Lake Publishing, the film making guidebook, HORROR 201: The Silver Scream. Reap the rewards of movie making experience from the likes of Myself as well as Ray Bradbury, John Carpenter, Wes Craven, Tom Holland, Jeffrey Reddick, George A. Romero, Keith Arem, Richard Gray, and many more. $19.99 in Print or $3.99 in eBook.


FOR MY SISTER LETY


Haven’t wanted to talk about this for a long time, but here goes.

Some of you may remember my sister Rachel who died from Ovarian cancer in 2014.
My sister Lety was having stomach problems that year, but ignored them and kept it from the rest of us so she – like us – could focus on doing whatever we could to care for Rachel.

After Rachel’s death, Lety’s pain was too much, she went to the hospital in November, and was diagnosed with stomach cancer.

There was well over a year of Chemo which seemed to help until late May of this year. Treatment was stopped as her cancer metastasized and Chemo would only make it worse.

Since then we did whatever we could to make Lety’s days as great as possible. She appeared to be doing pretty good without the Chemo and enjoyed long walks with the dogs.

We began to hope for some kind of remission.

5 weeks ago it suddenly hit her hard and it went quickly downhill from there.

2x4letyMy sister died September 19, 2016.

We buried her September 26.

Lety’s happiness was giving to her friends and family. She was one of those people who could be counted on to be first to help with anything and everything. Such people have difficulty being the one who needs help, but it was because of her powerful character that she was the center of all our lives.

Lety is luckier than most, however, because she died surrounded by love. This unemployed little woman who would not, could not stop volunteering to physically help and be there for everyone, spent her last two weeks surrounded by a seemingly endless stream of people, who could gain nothing from their final compassion, but to know that Lety would be happy to see them one last time.

So many more came from all over the world. People Lety kept in touch with but had not seen in years. They came from other cities, other states, other countries. Not all of them arrived in time.

The funeral procession of cars was so long the police cleared the traffic on the I-45, in the fourth largest city in the U.S., so that the remains of one of Houston’s economically poorest citizens could travel to the final resting place.

To Leticia: for 21 years you were my Sister from another Mother.

Goodbye.


You Could Be A Perfect Fit


Cotton Candy on a Waffle Cone, Mission Beach, California

Cotton Candy on a Waffle Cone, Mission Beach, California

I’m job hunting, which means I updated my resume on Monster.com and Career Builder. What that also means, and I understand this in advance, is that phone sales people and general idiots and companies that manufacture and sell general idiots, will call me.

I have not opened my phone and address up to the general public, who tend not to be idiots. But I have opened myself up to the general idiots who rent a broom closet and landline phone in an office building or public storage facility and seek to sell jobs to people like me.

So I have calls from unknown phone numbers go straight to voice mail for weeding.

The voice mail I speak of today is from what sounds like a woman and went like this,

“Hi, dis messab ib bor Ebwab. Ebwab, bis ib Besseshblubbublah. Bis craw ib regarbing bor Debblobby Bumbaclod stubee bawwing Houston, Texas. I came acrob uh job orberbor Ebub Mumumum, be Blumbumblum da resume ab Momber.bom. Bib ib in behalb ob BluBlurBubub. Bleb crawme ab blimbompum. Be bimb you could be a perfect fit. Aga, bis ib Besseshblubbublah. Blee craw me ah 800-XXX-XXXX. Bangbu n hab a grabe’ay.”

I couldn’t detect the tell-tale audio fuzz of a bad connection, but what else could it be? The phrase, “You could be a perfect fit” was the only part of the entire thing that made any sense. Maybe I’d been listening to a Vogon speak poetry and, for but a moment, a Babel Fish swam in and out of my ear.

I’m not sure if this is a job offer or a sales pitch, but whatever it is, it’s going down in Houston, Texas and I could be a perfect fit.

Well, what would you do if you were looking for a job (not to mention curiosity)? Naturally I called the number. I got a voicemail in what sounded like the same woman’s voice,

“Hi. Yuub hab reab Besseshblubbublah ah Debblobby Bumbaclod ob Houston, Texas. Pleeb leeb ah bois maid an I bill craw you bebor embbaday. Bangew bor crawing am habba nice day.”

I’m stunned, which is a few houses up the street from surprised.

I make myself some lunch.

I watch a few brief YouTube videos.

I watch a little TV, flip around the channels.

I call a few friends and we chit the chat.

No problem. It is not my hearing or my phone.

I cannot figure out this language, dialect, accent, slang, nothing!

I’m not calling this person with the atrocious grasp of English an idiot, as I have no ability to perceive her intellect at all.

I have traveled the world, but never heard anyone speak like this in my life.

Yet they have a business in Houston, Texas!

And!

And!

And!

They think I’d be a perfect fit!?!