The kindness of strangers

Lately I've been kind of bumming about the state of our society today: rude, obnoxious people who are in such a rush that they become oblivious to the world functioning around them. It seems lately I've stumbled across all kinds: the woman on her cell phone (not hands-free) in the monsterous SUV who tried to cut me off and pass me on the left--on a one lane road, mind you; the senior citizen that couldn't get out of the market fast enough and almost mowed me down in the process (I know I'm moving a little slower nowadays, but the 5 people in front of me weren't exactly moving at a jackrabbit's pace, either); the woman who interrupted my little one's Enchanted Castle experience because she just couldn't let her voice mail pick up (instead, she answered her phone with a quick, "I'm at the Enchanted Castle, can I call you back?" Seriously, you couldn't turn the ringer off for a half hour and let voice mail do your dirty work?)

All of this, combined with a few other choice incidents have really bummed me out of late. Are people so self-absorbed nowadays that they can't see beyond their own needs?

Well, I got a little attitude adjustment today, courtesy of a problem I was having with a website I'm working on. The site--which isn't live yet, so I can't go into too much detail--has a main menu going across the top of the page; each category has it's own drop down menu. Directly below that is a flash movie--nothing fancy, just 5 photographic fades. Problem is, the drop down menus are created in javascript, and the flash movie is, well, duh, it's flash. And little did I know, but certain web browsers (ahem, PC web browsers) layer flash as the top most layer--which means that my fancy little drop down menus were hidden behind the flash movie. Not exactly what the client was looking for (or me, for that matter).

So I spent a good part of yesterday looking for the solution; fortunately, this is a common problem (whew, it's not just me!). Unfortunately, the common fixes I found weren't doing anything to remedy this problem. I even enlisted Mattio in the process (during halftime, of course), and he kept coming up empty as well. So I turned to a flash forum.

I wasn't expecting much, to tell the truth; but I posted my problem (as well as the numerous solutions I had tried), and within hours I got a response. The genius behind the response hooked me up with a clever little download, as well as some fancy script. Mattio tutored me on where to put it in my code, and voila! In 5 minutes we had the site working the way it should.

So thank you, strange genius on the flash forum, for not only helping me solve a complex problem with your javascript/flash wisdom, but also reaffirming my faith in the kindness of strangers. Now, if only there was a forum in cell phone etiquette...

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