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andrew gardner
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147 followers
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andrew's posts

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I take an #AnimalRights lens to the #pokemon game mechanics, because I love talking animals, Pokémon, and game mechanics.

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I've had the top post on /r/toronto all day.
Really opened up a can of bicycle-hate from this city!

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Raise your pet virtual stache, like a Tamagotchi, but harrier.
A simple HTML5 game I made to fund raise for Movember.

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I done went and guest blogged for the TVA.
Vegetarian Food Festival, ho!

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Only 3 days left to get yourself a pair of #vegan , #eco-friendly, and ethically made in the USA shoes from Nicora Johns. They're only 115 pairs away from reaching their funding goal!

Black Sock and Dark Gray Sock,

I have recently reviewed your application to be jointly considered a pair of socks, fit for my wearing today.
I regret to inform you that your request has been denied.
While in most normal lighting conditions, and given the low-hanging nature of my pant cuffs, you could pass for the same colour, the fact remains that, Dark Gray Sock, your length is significantly shorter than that of Black Sock. Additionally, Black Sock has a refined texture, for high comfort, which Dark Gray Sock lacks. The pairing of you both would result in an uneven distribution of comfort through the day, eliminating any positive feeling that I'm spoiling myself with comfort today. Such feelings are important to me.

As laundry day grows nearer, and I get more desperate for passable pairs of socks, your file may be re-opened, and your application reconsidered.

-Andrew Gardner

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So my goofy email got me interviewed for the Star and the Globe and Mail:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/industry-news/marketing/shoppers-drug-mart-will-help-you-escape-the-zombie-hordes-but-not-officially/article12359560/

http://www.thestar.com/business/2013/06/05/is_hilarious_customer_service_response_really_from_shoppers.html

Shoppers has distanced themselves from the response. What a dumb move. This is viral marketing you can't buy!

UPDATE: Today was a crazy day regarding this post - Shoppers Drug Mart contacted me trying to identify who sent it, and a few news outlets too!
The writer identified himself as Mark Oliver - http://markoliverfiction.wordpress.com/ - I did not know him before this. This is just a happy, magical interaction that took place, and I wish him the best in his writing. This was a lot of fun!

to: customerservice@shoppersdrugmart.ca

Hi guys,

I received a piece of mail today in my mailbox with your letterhead on it. At first I was alarmed, because any mail with "drug" in the title immediately raises a red flag with me, but then I looked you guys up and saw you were legit, so that's not my concern.

No, my concern today is that the piece of mail was addressed to someone, Matthew [REDACTED],who is not currently a resident of this house, [REDACTED].

Naturally, I can draw one of two conclusions from this: 1) that Matthew is a previous resident of this address, and has not updated his address information with your system for over 3 years (the approximate time that I've lived here), in which case, please contact him about his up-to-date address information, and send no further mail to this address. Or 2), and I may be going out on a limb here, Matthew is a future resident of this address, and seemingly against the laws of causation, your computer system has this information, and prematurely mailed an advertisement to him before he's actually lived here.
It's this second case that I really need to delve into here, and again, hey, maybe it's a long-shot, but I have many questions about the future, and generally don't like passing up opportunities to address them to those who might have the answers.
Is this future address retrieval the result of some one-time glitch, or is it repeatable? Are the conditions to repeat it known? If the answer is no, I can maybe help you find out how it happened, but I'll need access to your lab.
Has anything other than an address come from the future through this computer system? Dire warnings? Advanced technology schematics? Again, they may be difficult to interpret, and I'm pretty handy with reverse-engineering things, so access to your lab is probably required if you want me to have a look.
I'm kind of on the edge of my seat here, and my brain is frantic with possibilities for what we could do with this time-gateway you may or may not have unlocked. If it turns out the course of history is indeed pliable, not fixed, then we can maybe avoid future disasters and get a real taste of utopia in a mere matter of years. This would, all in all, be very favourable press for the Shoppers Drug Mart brand, and would definitely allow citizens like me to overlook the fact that the word "drug" is in your name.

Any info I can get about this would be most helpful. I work full-time, so access to your lab would need to fall around work hours - I'm sure we can figure something out.

Thanks! And here's to a glorious tomorrow!

[EDIT: Updated with their fun response]
response:

Hello Andrew,

Thank you for writing us. We apologize if you have been receiving mail from Shoppers Drug Mart that was addressed to another customer. Unfortunately, we cannot comment on any research projects that we may currently be conducting. However, we would appreciate it if you could provide us with some additional information that would help us determine when the mailer you received was sent. Could you please let us know if it contained any of the following advertisements?

1)     Now at Shoppers Drug Mart: Everexis
Cure any disease instantly with Everexis! Great for headaches, colds, cancer and more! With no known side effects, nothing can possibly go wrong!

2)     20X The Points on Meat Products
Got the Everexis munchies? Fill your strange and unspeakable hunger and get 20X The Points!

3)     20% Off Everexis Antidote
Everexis left you slow, lumbering, and quick to anger? Take the Everexis antidote. It hasn't been fully tested, but it certainly can't make things any worse!

4)     Hide in a Shoppers Drug Mart Refugee Shelter
With over 1,200 locations still standing across Canada, Shoppers Drug Mart is the ideal place to hold up and hide from the hoard. Ration Nativa Cheese Puffs and Life Brand Vitamins while you wait for rescue! Blood samples will be required for admittance.

5)     Wheat, Glorious Wheat
Exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart! Rebuild society with wheat, a traditional non-synthetic foodstuff from the before-times. Act fast, as quantities are extremely limited.

If you did not see any of these promotions, please disregard this message. We will simply update our customer database. As our mailers are often sent out in advance, you may still receive additional mail over the next few weeks. We appreciate your patience while the update is processed.

Regards,
Shoppers Drug Mart Customer Service

My fellow Americans, star-date 2344,
Yes, time-travel is a thing now, and we all know that I win the upcoming presidential election. I wish to emphasize, however, that you do still have to vote for me.
You see, unlike my opponent, Zipp Romney, I believe in a paradox-free America. The paradox that would emerge from my simultaneous election and defeat would be just the distraction from real issues that the Republiquarks want.
So vote for me, Starrack Obama, like you already know you did-will.
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